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YuGiOh! (Yōgiō), is an animated television series that started out as a manga. The Series started in 1998 and has gone through many reincarnations through its numerous seasons. The popular anime exploded from just being an animated weekly cartoon, to filling the stores with YuGiOh! books, trading cards, action figures, DVD‚Äôs, video games, and a variety of other YuGiOh! related items.

YuGiOh! was first created as a manga by Kazuki Takahashi. Takahashi had been writing manga since 1982 but it was not until he created YuGiOh! in 1996 that he found true success in his field. When Takahashi first started the manga, he wrote about two of his characters playing a game that was then called‚ "Magic and Wizards". This was Takahashi's little play on the popular card game Magic: The Gathering. The game was only to be in two of the books, but he received so much feedback about it that he decided to run with the game and to build the character's world around it.

The name of the game was changed from ‚"Magic and Wizards" to‚"Duel Monsters" when the manga was picked up for animation in 1998. The story behind YuGiOh! is that of a boy, Yugi Mutou (or Yugi Moto in the English version), who possesses an Egyptian relic known as the Millennium Puzzle. This triangular object houses the soul of an ancient pharaoh, known through most of the story as Dark Yugi. Yugi Mutou plays "Duel Monsters" well, but it his alter ego, Dark Yugi, that often takes over in order to beat the various enemies found in their world. Yugi has friends, namely Katsuya Jonouchi, Anzu Mazaki, and Hiroto Honda. His main nemesis is named Seto Kaiba, and occasionally Yugi and his friends find themselves fighting along side Seto, instead of against him.

The invented card game in the YuGiOh! manga and animated series has become a real card game. The first version was created by Bandai in September of 1998, but was quickly sold to Kanomi, who started releasing the cards in December of 1998. The current version of the Duel Monsters card game is extremely collectible and features a huge array of different cards. There are three main types of cards:

  • Monster Cards
  • Spell Cards
  • Trap Cards

Monster cards are fairly self-descriptive. They are different monsters that are meant to attack, and defend, the player. As the purpose of the game is to avoid losing life-points, monster cards are very valuable, as they are one of the easiest ways to take another's life points. Spell cards can make monster cards stronger, or they can make their opponents cards weaker. Trap cards are often turned face down and are sprung on the opponent after a move has been made. These cards can be very helpful when used at the opportune time.

The YuGiOh! video game part of the franchise has sold over 17.5 million copies of the game world wide. They are the perfect way for the YuGiOh! enthusiast to feel as if they are truly part of the show. In the show, all of the monsters come to life, either digitally or truly depending on the episode, which is impossible with the card game. The video game takes the card game to the next level, and with a version available on every major game system there is, it is easy to access to play.

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