Yami Bakura runs Occult Decks focused on Fiend and Zombie-Type monsters. His Decks often employ lockdown strategies while concurrently disrupting and stunning his opponent from employing their strategic moves while trying to either instantly win through activating his "Destiny Board" by fueling his graveyard through Deck thinning Fiend-Type monsters or through using the "Cursed Twin Dolls" and "Goblin Zombie" to mill his opponent Decks. Yami Bakura makes use of lower level Fiend-Type monsters such as "Headless Knight" and "The Gross Ghost of Fled Dreams" to bait opponents into attacking them for fueling his Graveyard with Fiend monsters in order to Summon and activate his signature card "Dark Necrofear" effect. He also employs the use of monster effects to turn his opponent's attacks against them such as using his boss monster "Dark Necrofear" to control his opponents monsters or crippling his opponent Life Points when using "Zoma the Spirit". His monsters resemble creatures from role-playing games, which makes certain sense as in the first series, Bakura was into RPGs.
Bakura's initial Deck is a Disruption Deck, using cards like "Morphing Jar" and "Man-Eater Bug" to control the field and hand. This strategy was effective due to the specific nature of this Shadow Game against Yami Yugi, where the souls of Yugi and his friends had been sealed in their favorite cards which were added to Yami Yugi's Deck. Thus Yami Yugi focused on gathering them on the field to avoid having to discard them to the Graveyard, which Bakura exploited with "Just Desserts" to deal heavy damage since Yami Yugi controlled multiple monsters. Ultimately he was defeated when he played "Change of Heart", the favorite card of the true Bakura. Bakura's soul within the card defied Yami Bakura and allowed Yugi and Yami Yugi to restore Bakura to his body, trapping Yami Bakura in the card of "Lady of Faith" where Yugi destroyed him as the "Dark Magician".
During Battle City Yami Bakura uses his Occult Deck for the first time, with a new signature boss card "Dark Necrofear". This Deck was highly risky, often using lower level Fiend-type monsters and relying on baiting opponents into attacking them for fueling his graveyard in order to summon and activate his signature card "Dark Necrofear" effect. Against Yugi, Yami Bakura allowed "Dark Necrofear" to be destroyed to activate "Dark Sanctuary". Using the card's powers Yami Bakura was protected from Yugi's attacks and was able to recover his Life Points while draining Yugi's. He also used "Destiny Board" with the intent to eventually declare an automatic victory once he was able to complete its five-letter message. Against Yami Marik, Bakura focuses on making Yami Marik add "The Winged Dragon of Ra" to his hand with "Dark Designator" and claiming it for himself with "Exchange".
Yami Bakura plays another Fiend Deck when he confronts Seto Kaiba in order to gain the power of his "Blue-Eyes White Dragon" for his own purposes. He protects himself from attack with "Spirit Shield" and uses "Diabound Kernal" and "Spirit Illusion" to weaken Kaiba's "Blue-Eyes" so "Diabound" can destroy it and absorb its power. He also uses various tablet cards that symbolize the original Duel Monster spirits that were captured in stone.
In his final Duel of the series, Yami Bakura plays an Undead Lock Deck with the "Necro" monsters against Yugi Muto, which focuses upon winning the Duel by having one's opponent run out of cards. To achieve this he uses "Cursed Twin Dolls" and "Counterbalance", allowing his destroyed monsters to return to the field as "Ghosts" rather than going to the Graveyard and forcing Yugi to discard cards from his Deck each turn equal to the number of monsters in play. Due to this combo Yugi lost almost a dozen cards each turn, quickly depleting his Deck, while Bakura did not have to discard since his Graveyard had been "destroyed". As protection until Yugi's Deck was wiped out, Bakura utilized "Spirit Sword of Sealing" and "Narrow Corridor" to limit his attacks.