These cards may be a reference to the seven kings of Ancient Rome, but with the addition of "Delg the Dark Monarch", this is somewhat doubted, though "Delg the Dark Monarch" may be a reference to the eighth king of Rome in the book of Revelation. (Rev 17,9-11 : "Here is a clue for one who has wisdom. The seven heads represent seven hills upon which the woman sits. They also represent seven kings: five have already fallen, one still lives, and the last has not yet come, and when he comes he must remain only for a short while. The beast that existed once but exists no longer is an eighth king, but really belongs to the seven and is headed for destruction.")
These cards may be considered as an opposite to the Elemental Charmers.
Each has a unique ability that activates upon their Tribute Summoning, dealing with the removal of cards, although Kuraz the Light Monarch and Delg the Dark Monarch do not require to be tribute summoned or even normal summoned to trigger his ability. Another similarity that these cards share is that they all have 2400 ATK and 1000 DEF and are Level 6, with the exception of "Zaborg", who is Level 5.
"Monarch" Decks tend to be very aggressive and powerful, because "Monarchs" destroy the opponent's assets just by hitting the Field, and they are strong enough in ATK to be able to press their advantage and destroy nearly any lower-level monster the opponent may happen to use in response. Monarchs have no real weaknesses other than decks that strictly run Zombie World, which almost completely shuts down the "Monarchs", and their insatiable need to generate Tribute fodder for more "Monarchs" to be Summoned and that they cannot use their effects when Special Summoned (with the exceptions of "Kuraz" and "Delg".)
- Tokens: Many tokens have restrictions on how they can be used, but some sources, like "Dandylion", "Fiend's Sanctuary","Phantom Skyblaster" "Goka, the Pyre of Malice" and "Stray Lambs", have few limitations on their tokens.
- "Reborn Tengu": This is perfect for tribute fodder, for if you tribute it, another one will spawn and if it's destroyed by battle you have another one ready as tribute fodder.
- Special Summon From Hand: Some monsters Special Summon themselves from the hand, and that saves the Normal Summon for a Monarch. The better ones include "Cyber Dragon", "Evil Hero Infernal Prodigy", "Gilasaurus", "Jester Confit", "Level Warrior", "Spell Striker", "The Tricky", "Vice Dragon", "Oracle of the Sun", "Naturia Cosmobeet", "Battle Fader", and "Swap Frog" in Frognarchs variants.
- Trap Monsters: These provide both Tribute Fodder and defense against the opponent's tactics, but they are easily destroyed.
- D.D. Survivor and D.D. Scout Plane: When these cards are banished, they automatically return themselves to the field. Use "Banisher of the Radiance", "Banisher of the Light", "Dimensional Fissure" or "Macro Cosmos" to keep them coming back.
- Treeborn Frog: So long as you control no Spell or Trap cards, this card will come back every turn. This drawback reduces the card's effectiveness in some builds, but it provides some defense in case of a cleared field.
- Level Eater: By reducing the level of a high-level Monster, this card revives itself from the Graveyard; each Monarch, except "Zaborg the Thunder Monarch", can spawn up to two.
- Destiny Hero - Malicious: Its effect lets you banish one copy in the Graveyard from play to Special Summon another from your Deck. This card is particularly effective for its Deck-thinning function.
- Spirit Reaper' and Marshmallon: These cards cannot be destroyed in battle, making them good walls to use until you get the Monarch you need. Several other monsters have similar abilities, so options are plenty to suit different Deck styles.
- Soul Exchange This card can gain extra advantage by allowing opponent's monsters to be Tributed for Monarchs. Best used to summon "Kuraz" or "Delg" as their effects already restrict them from attacking upon being summoned.
- Chain Summoning, Double Summon and Ultimate Offering: These cards allow multiple Normal Summons to occur in a single turn, very good for getting out Tribute Fodder and multiple Monarchs. This is particularly effective with "Samsara Kaiser".
- Instant Fusion: At a cost of 1000 Life Points, this card can bring out a low level Fusion Monster for Tribute fodder.
Monarchs can be difficult to overcome due to the fact that they destroy cards simply by appearing, but there are still some good strategies against them. These include:
- Divine Wrath, Forced Back, Solemn Judgment, Solemn Warning, Pulling the Rug: These cards negate the Monarchs' Summon, and thereby their effects, and remove them from the field, essentially wasting the Monarch user's efforts.
- Mask of Restrict, Fog King or Zombie World: These cards effectively prevent Tribute Summons and as a result prevent Monarchs from hitting the field and activating their effects (except for Kuraz or Delg since their effects activate when Normal Summoned without a Tribute or when Special Summoned too).
- Vanity's Fiend, Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo, Archlord Kristya: These cards can completely shut down Frognarch/Formula Monarch decks, as they rely heavily on Special Summoning to get out tribute fodder (Treeborn Frog, namely) and Synchro Monsters. This is particularly deadly against builds that don't use Soul Exchange.
- By Order of the Emperor, Destiny Hero - Plasma and Skill Drain: These cards negate on-field effects, turning Monarchs into beat-sticks. "Grave of the Super Ancient Organism" can be used to limit "Kuraz" and "Delg" use, but it is not recomended since it targets only special summoned monsters and they can still be tributed if needed.
- Intercept: Lets you take control of a Monarch right when it gets summoned which can be a nasty surprise for most Monarch users.
- Blast Held by a Tribute: Even more destructive than a "Mirror Force" since it also inflicts damage, but not as reliable as other methods of getting the better of Monarchs, since there is a chance that they will destroy this card before they attack.
- Prime Material Dragon, Stardust Dragon and Destruction Jammer: Counteract effects that destroy cards. Note that they won't be able to stop "Raiza", "Thestalos", "Delg" or "Caius", since they don't destroy cards.
- Turbo Warrior: His effect makes him immune to "Zaborg", "Raiza", "Caius", and "Kuraz's" effects and he has just enough attack power to be able to destroy any of them in battle.
- Rivalry of Warlords: This card prevents having more than one Type of monsters on the field. It also prevents a new Type from being summoned, including Tribute summoning; so if the opponent controls a "Gravekeeper's Spy", they cannot Tribute it to summon any Monarch (except for Delg). "Gozen Match" is not recommended as an alternative as most tributes are DARK and "Caius" is the most used Monarch.
- Ritual Cage: It protects Ritual Monsters from most Monarchs and makes them waste their effect.
- "March of the Monarchs" is almost a must since it will protect your Tribute Summoned monsters from the effects of any kind of card that try to target them or destroy them, making them a lot harder to be demolish, though it comes at the cost of denying you access to the Extra Deck.
- "The Seal of Orichalcos" is a great, if not the only, option to give all your Monarchs the boost they may need. It affects only your monsters no matter the attribute or the type. You can only use it once in duel, but since it's hard to destroy, it may be all you need. Like "March of the Monarchs," the "Seal" prevents you from using your Extra Deck, so you must know whether or not you need to Xyz Summon.
- Gorz the Emissary of Darkness may save you while in a pinch. Not only can he hold his own with 2700 ATK, but the Token that he summons can be used as a Tribute for a "Monarch".
- Royal Oppression (Traditional Format only) Disrupts any Special Summons as the Monarchs are unaffected. In this case, you should use extra Normal Summon effects in order to bring out the Monarchs.
Tutor Loop MonarchEdit
This uses a string of tutors to make sure that there is always tribute fodder. The chain goes like this: Nova Summoner, then Shining Angel, then UFOroid, then UFO Turtle, then Masked Dragon, then Troop Dragon. If you have three of each card and use 3 of each before searching out a different tutor, you can withstand up to 17 attacks and still have tribute fodder. Other useful cards include: Super-Nimble Mega Hamster, Ryko, Lightsworn Hunter, Obelisk the Tormentor, The Winged Dragon of Ra, Treeborn Frog (you can search with Mother Grizzly), Sangan (Traditional Format only), Nimble Momonga, Reborn Tengu, Double Summon, Pixie Ring (most of the tutors in the loop have 1400 ATK), Spirit Barrier (most tutors summon monsters in attack position), Soul Rope (use to get another loop started) and Mirror Force.
Monarch Control is a Deck that quickly Special Summons monsters to the Field and Tribute those monsters to summon a "Monarch" monster and activate their effects to gain more Field advantage. Some good Tributes are "Spell Striker", "Samsara Kaiser", "Marshmallon" and many more. Each "Monarch" has unique effects to gain Field advantage when Tribute Summoned, this will be the key of winning with this Deck. The "Treeborn Monarch combo" might work at this Deck, since Treeborn Frog shall always be Summoned from your Graveyard, allowing a Tribute fodder for the Monarchs. "Gorz the Emissary of Darkness" is a great addition to this Deck because this can be Tributed for Monarchs and when your Field is empty, you can Special Summon this. "Light and Darkness Dragon" is also a great addition because it will protect the "Monarchs" from getting destroyed and when this card is destroyed, you can Special Summon a monster from your graveyard to be Tributed for a "Monarch". Also, a good addition to this Deck would be some 'searchers' like "Mystic Tomato" or "Shining Angel" because if it is destroyed by battle, you can search for another monster, ensuring a monster to tribute for a "Monarch" during your next turn.
This Deck relies on reusing the effects of "D.D. Survivor" and "D.D. Scout Plane" with the help of "Macro Cosmos" and/or "Dimensional Fissure", which will allow the said monsters to keep coming back each End Phase, allowing you to Tribute Summon a "Monarch" each turn. Other cards that are commonly used in this Deck are "Cyber Valley," some of the other D.D. Monsters, like "D.D. Warrior Lady", "Soul Absorption", which can give its controller massive Life Point gain each turn, and "Gravekeeper's Servant", which can make a lock for all of your opponent's Monsters, preventing them from attacking for as long as they cannot send a card from their Deck to their Graveyard. You can use "Enemy Controller" to tribute a "D.D. Survivor" or "D.D. Scout Plane" and take control of one of your opponents monsters. Then tribute it for a Monarch, and the "D.D. Scout Plane" or "D.D. Survivor" will return in the End Phase. "Crush Card Virus" in Traditional Format can be used with "D.D. Scout Plane" as it will still return during the End Phase. By using "Divine Knight Ishzark" via battle you can increase your opponent's banished cards, and have a finishing move with "D.D. Dynamite's" effect.
An alternative to a Monarch Control Deck is an Apprentice Monarch Deck, which uses cards like "Apprentice Magician", "Crystal Seer" and "Old Vindictive Magician" to gain the upper hand in a duel. "Old Vindictive Magician" destroys your opponent's monsters and "Crystal Seer" gives you extra cards, giving you more strategies to play with. "Apprentice Magician" summons those monsters in the Damage Step when your opponent can't do much about it. These monsters are also very good tribute materials for "Monarchs".
There are many options to support the "Monarchs"; it really just depends on what works for those playing Monarch Decks. However, the "Treeborn Frog" method seems to work the best since you waste less resources to Summon the Monarchs.
Perfect Circle MonarchEdit
This Deck uses the "Destiny Hero" engine to get an advantage in their game, but with the banning of "Destiny Hero - Disk Commander", it has become less effective. These are Graveyard based Decks that can easily bring out a level 8 Synchro Monster or draw cards.
See also:Perfect Circle
Since release of "The Duelist Genesis" booster, there has been a new Monarch Deck called Psychic Monarchs. Cards like "Krebons" and "Psychic Commander" stall with their effects, then you can tribute them for a Monarch or use them for a Synchro Summon. "Emergency Teleport" helps search both monsters. Now that "Emergency Teleport" is now at 3, due to the September 2012 ban list, your ability to Synchro Summon level 8 monsters and summon Monarchs has been sped up.
This Deck relies on using "Gadgets" to continuously add new Gadgets to the hand to serve as tribute fodder, along with obvious tribute fodder monsters such as "Treeborn Frog". One of the key cards of the Deck is "Ultimate Offering". "Ultimate Offering" allows the constant summon of "Gadgets" to add more "Gadgets" to the hand, while then Tributing them for "Monarchs". Due to the removal effect of most "Monarchs", this Deck has a high OTK rate.
This Deck relies on using cards that Special Summon, such as the Attack Position effect of "Morphtronic Celfon", to Special Summon a "Morphtronic" Monster, then Tributing that for a "Monarch". Cards such as "One for One", "Junk Box", "Morphtronic Repair Unit", and "Call of the Haunted" are highly recommended. "Morphtronic Boomboxen", "Morphtronic Boarden", "Morphtronic Magnen", and "Morphtronic Cameran" can protect your "Morphtronics" so you can tribute them for any Monarch.
Deck has a similar purpose to Frognarchs. You have "Tytannial, Princess of Camellias" to give the ability to stop you opponent. You have "Spore" as a tuner. You also have "Dandylion", "Naturia Pineapple", "Naturia Cherries", and" Treeborn Frog" as tribute fodder. You can also use "Mark of the Rose" to gain "Monarch" control. The downside to this Deck is that if you cannot main only Beast-Type and Plant-Type monsters in your graveyard, "Naturia Pineapple" becomes useless.
Or you run the Genex Undine engine with Genex Controller to thin the deck with the help of the plant monsters. You will always have a hand and keep something on the field.