Tribute, called Release (Japanese: リリース Rirīsu) in the OCG and the Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's and Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL anime series, refers to a method of sending a monster(s) the player controls to the Graveyard. It was previously referred to as to offer as a Tribute in the TCG, called Sacrifice (
Monsters can be Tributed in two ways:
- As requirement for a Tribute Summon/Set.
- By card that specifically uses this term (as a cost, effect, or as part of a Summoning condition).
Unless a card specifically states that you can Tribute monsters in your hand or under your opponent's control, such as "Forbidden Arts of the Gishki" and "Reptilianne Vaskii", you can only Tribute monsters you control (on the field).
Tributed cards do not need to end up in the Graveyard to still be considered Tributed. For example, Tributed cards banished by the effect of "Macro Cosmos" will still be considered to be Tributed, so the cost of cards such as "Horn of Heaven" can still be paid while "Macro Cosmos" is active.