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Pojo's Yu-Gi-Oh Card of the Day

Armed Dragon LV3

Dragon / Effect Monster
During your Standby Phase, send this face-up card to the Graveyard to Special Summon 1 "Armed Dragon LV5" from your hand or Deck.

Type - Wind / 3 / 1200 / 900
Card Number - SOD-EN013

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale 1 being 
the worst.  3 ... average.  5 is the highest rating

Date Reviewed - 10.13.04

Armed Dragon LV5
Rare / Ultimate Rare

Dragon / Effect Monster
Send 1 Monster Card from your hand to the Graveyard to destroy 1 face-up monster on your opponent's side of the field with an ATK equal to or less than the ATK of the sent monster. During the End Phase of a turn that this card destroyed a monster as a result of battle, send this card to the Graveyard to Special Summon 1 "Armed Dragon LV7" from your hand or Deck.

Type - Wind / 5 / 2400 / 1700
Card Number - SOD-EN014

Armed Dragon LV7
Ultra Rare / Ultimate Rare

Dragon / Effect Monster
This card cannot be Normal Summoned or Set. This card cannot be Special Summoned except by the effect of "Armed Dragon LV5". Send 1 Monster Card from your hand to the Graveyard to destroy all face-up monsters on your opponent's side of the field with an ATK equal to or less than the ATK of the sent monster.

Type - Wind / 7 / 2800 / 1000
Card Number - SOD-EN015

Tranorix Armed Dragon Family

I'll say right now that I don't like multiple reviews. I feel focusing on more than one card at a time detracts from the attention each individual card should get. But anyway, let's get on with it. The Armed Dragons are very impressive monsters, but unfortunately they usually get passed over in favor of the Horus Dragons. I have noticed, however, that people usually combine both sets into one deck; and I've seen mixed results...

Lv3 is worthless. Its only purpose is to bring out Lv5; if you ignore that, it's just a monster with very crappy stats. What hurts is that you need to have it on your side of the field during your Standby Phase, meaning if you Normal Summon this thing, you have to keep it alive through your opponent's next turn. Not extremely difficult, but definitely not guaranteed...but when you DO pull of Lv3's effect, you get to get rid of the little guy to summon the much-better Lv5.

With an ATK of 2400, Armed Dragon Lv5 is pretty impressive. He's also a Dragon, so he can be summoned via Lord of D/Flute – a nice bonus. You can discard a monster from your hand to destroy a monster on your opponent's side of the field with less ATK than the monster you discarded. Discard another Lv5 and you kill everything from Jinzo down. Discard Blue Eyes and you’ve taken care of just about everything people will consider playing. It’s definitely a nice effect, but it shouldn't be relied upon to save you; your hand may very well not contain anything worth using with Lv5. That aside, if Lv5 kills a monster in Battle, you can send it to the GY during the End Phase to Special Summon Lv7.

Armed Dragon Lv7 is obviously superior to his two counterparts, but he has one big weakness: You can only summon him through the effect of Lv5 (or Level Up). He is a nomi monster, meaning that even if you do summon him properly, you can't bring him back from the Graveyard later on. His effect is similar, but better, than Lv5's. Discarding a monster from your hand will now destroy ALL monsters on your opponent’s field with ATK equal to or less than the discarded monster. You can just imagine the destructive potential of that one...discard another Lv7 and you basically just used Raigeki. It's definitely useful, and 2800 ATK is definitely solid.

All in all, the Armed Dragon family can be just as effective as the Horus family. I personally wouldn't recommend combining them unless you know what you're doing; I've seen a lot of failed decks that try to incorporate both themes. Pick one and go with it until you really see what each one can do; THEN make your decision.

Traditional Format – CCCC: 2/5
Traditional Format – Armed Dragon Deck: 3.5/5
Advanced Format – Armed Dragon Deck: 4/5 
Coin Flip Today is a triple fun review as we review a triple fun lineup! Expect some length from this review, kiddos, and I'm not using my standard I-SUC system of Introduction-Stats/Cost,Usability/Effect,Combos for rating! Instead, I'll review the Armed Dragon decktype.

Well, Armed Dragon is a beast. The Level 3 and Level 5 variants are somewhat lackluster - LV3 is a weak monster that you won't be able to keep out on the field for long, and has no effect of its own besides the standard LV effect. It can slip under Gravity Bind, but so can Masked Dragon and Twin-Headed Behemoth. Masked Dragon, by the way, is an excellent way to get him out for your standby phase, if you want to bother with it. Level 5 has a very decent attack, and the effect, albeit weaker than Tribe-Infecting Virus' similar effect, will at least serve for some quick destruction. You can just dump and revive him, too, if you don't want to use LV3 or sacrifice a monster. After destroying a monster in battle, you can pull out LV7.

The effect is interesting. Most of you will immediately make the parallel to Tribe-Infecting Virus, but that's not quite what this is. See, with Tribe, you could discard a Sinister Serpent or a Night Assailant and have taken no real loss - with LV5, you need to 1 for 1 each of your opponent's monsters, and ram the rest. It doesn't touch face down monsters, unfortunately... But that's where you begin to include a few things to assist it. First off, next set, we will be getting a level 7 monster with 2800 attack that can be normal summoned without tribute with its attack and defense halved. A good deal of the time, that is equivalent to a Raigeki, and even without a LV7 or a LV5, you can summon it to the field and use it as a weak 1400. Second off, if you include Light of Intervention, you can keep your opponent from surprising you and not have to worry about Armed Dragon not killing a monster. Finally, a few Goblin Attack Forces and Giant Orcs will give the deck high-powered attackers that also serve as Raigekis. Oh, don't forget to include a Final Attack Orders, as that will keep the GAF and Giant Orcs in attack as well as reduce the need to actually use your Monster-Raigekis. Just attack instead of discarding if they only have one monster on the field.

So, here, I'll list an example of what I would run as an Armed Dragon deck. (Championship format, of course.)

Monsters: 18
2x Armed Dragon LV7
2x Armed Dragon LV5
2x Armed Dragon LV3
3x Goblin Attack Force
3x Spear Dragon
3x Giant Orc
Cyber Jar
Breaker the Magical Warrior
Tribe-Infecting Virus

Magic: 13
Pot of Greed
Change of Heart
Swords of Revealing Light
Snatch Steal
Heavy Storm
Forceful Sentry
Premature Burial
3x Level Up!
3x Stamping Destruction

Traps: 10
3x Light of Intervention
3x Final Attack Orders
Call of the Haunted
2x Magic Drain
Dragon's Rage

Note that I suck at making Armed Dragon decks (and noted this when I tried to make one a few months ago). This is just what I would use as my base. 
ExMinion OfDarkness Armed Dragon Lv. 3/5/7

This is our first of 3 reviews this week where we look at multiple cards in the same monster line -- reminds me of Pokemon days where Squirtle and Wartortle had to at least be mentioned to adequately review Blastoise.

I'll only briefly look at the lower levels, saving the strength of the review for the higher levels.

Level 3:
Only 1200/900. However, this isn't as bad as it doesn't have to kill a monster in battle to level up to 5 -- it just has to be on your field at Standby. Call of the Haunted + Lv. 3 = quick Lv. 5.

Level 5:
Jinzo-like attack strength and non-searchable by things outside of the Level family. An important note: YOU MAY OFFER A TRIBUTE TO TRIBUTE SUMMON THIS CARD NORMALLY. You do NOT have to go through Level 3 to get to this guy. This card gives you an ability we've since overlooked in the XYZ cards -- a discard of 1 card to get rid of one card. The problem hers is it requires a very specific discard -- a monster card that's stronger than the opponent's monster on the field. This means you can't just use Sinister Serpent with it every turn (as all discarding was meant to be!) This card has to kill a monster in order to level itself up, which brings us to:

Level 7:
One of the in-demand ultras of the set, Armed Dragon Lv. 7 wields great power. 2800 ATK and a built-in way to kill multiple monsters. The specific discard is bad for most things -- it still doesn't get rid of face-down monsters, so that Stealth Bird that's plaguing you won't be hurt...but a Sinister Serpent can be sent to get rid of ALL of their stupid Scapegoats (which is BIG in Advanced.)

I would say that this card's Witchability (in Traditional) is a pro but it isn't; you want this card in the deck, not in the hand...unless you have two of it, take the one from the deck, and discard the other one for the effect.

This card had the potential to be really, really broken, but the way his discards work bring him well short of that. It's a Tier 2 deck to build at best.

Traditional -- 1.5/5 -- There are better decks to play. They're called cookie-cutters. Some deviation from the norm is understandable if the deck can hold its own against the hand negation and Envoys, but this deck just won't cut it.

Advanced -- 2.75/5 -- Mass removal is good, but the specific type of mass removal provided with the Dragons can be worked around by an opponent. 
Snapper Armed Dragons LV3, LV5, and LV7

Today (and for the remainder of the week) we’ll be reviewing more than one monster each day. And as you can probably guess, they will be the more popular of the LV monsters. Today’s cards are the Armed Dragons, the forgotten LV lizards of SOD.

Stats (All LVs): LV3 has 1200/900 ATK/DEF, allowing you to get it with Witch of the Black Forest, Sangan, Masked Dragon, and Flying Kamakiri #1. Its stats aren’t ideal for such a low level monster, but are useable. LV5 has 2400/1700 ATK/DEF, which are good numbers considering it’s a level 5 monster, thus requiring a tribute. It isn’t searchable by anything, which brings it down a little. LV7 has 2800/1000 ATK/DEF, allowing you to search for it with Witch. The ATK is pretty good for a monster of such a high level, and considering it can only be Special Summoned makes it an even better card. All of the Armed Dragons are WIND monsters, which is the most neglected Attribute. They are also all Dragons, hence the word Dragon in their name. Dragon’s have always had a fair amount of support, and SOD has only given them more. Stats (LV3) – Adequate. Stats (LV5) – Good. Stats (LV7) – Good.

Effect (LV3): LV3’s effect is not as good as the other LV monsters. All you need to do is have it face-up on the field during your Standby Phase, and you can send it to the Graveyard to Special Summon LV5 from your hand or Deck. Unlike the other LV monsters, that’s all it does. It has no bonus effect. And to bring it down further, it can only be done during the Standby Phase. This contradicts the other LV monsters, which can use this effect during the End Phase, assuming they’ve destroyed a monster of battle that turn. LV3’s effect has two sides to it though; with its low ATK, LV3 won’t be destroying much, so to take away that part of the effect is helpful to LV3. But, the problem then arises as to how you are going to get LV3 to last until your next Standby Phase without protection. Of course you can use cards like Waboku to protect it from attacks, but I think you’d rather save Waboku for LV5 or LV7. This small fact greatly brings down LV3’s playability. Effect – Bad.

Effect (LV5): LV5’s effect is much better than that of LV3; it does something other than Special Summon LV7. All you need to do is SEND one MONSTER in your hand to the Graveyard to destroy one of your opponent’s face-up monsters with equal or less ATK than the sent monster. I don’t find this first effect to be extremely useful; most of the monsters you’d come up against could be easily destroyed in battle by LV5, and you’d still have an extra monster in your hand. And, if your opponent managed to summon something stronger than LV5, what are the odds you would have a stronger monster in your hand that you would want to send to the Graveyard? But, if the chance arises that you wanted to use this effect, you can use it as often as you want as long as you have a monster in your hand. The second effect is all that is really useful with LV5. It allows you to send LV5 to the Graveyard during the end phase of a turn it destroys a monster IN BATTLE, to Special Summon LV7 from your hand or Deck. Please note it says in battle, meaning you can’t use this effect if you destroyed a monster with LV5’s first effect. This effect shouldn’t be to hard to use considering LV5 has a good ATK, allowing it to destroy most monsters your opponent might have. Effect – Adequate.

Effect (LV7): LV7 is basically equal to LV5. Send one monster in your hand to the Graveyard to destroy all of your opponent’s face-up monsters with equal or less ATK than the sent monster. The same problem with LV5’s effect exists with LV7 as well; most monsters your opponent would use would have a lower ATK than LV7, allowing you to destroy them in battle much easier. Of course, LV7’s is slightly better by working on all of your opponent’s face-up monsters, and not just one like LV5's. The only thing that lowers LV7’s score is that it can only be Special Summoned through LV5’s effect. This means its dead in your hand until you summon LV5 and use it’s effect, and as soon as LV7 is in the Graveyard, it’s going to stay there. Effect – Adequate.

Combos: You can use Level Up! on LV3 and LV5 to Special Summon the next level, allowing you to get a better monster sooner. You could also use Light of Intervention to make sure your opponent keeps their monsters face-up to allow you to use the effect of LV5 and LV7 with greater possibilities. Interdimensional Transporter would also help out LV7 to keep it on the field longer, extending its short life.

Usability: The Armed Dragons function in two deck types. One is a deck dedicated solely to the Armed Dragons, focusing on getting LV7 out as soon as possible, and continuously using its effect to ensure direct attacks to your opponent’s Life Points. Another deck to try them in is any form of a Dragon Deck. The Dragon Deck would probably not include LV3, and would instead use The Flute of Summoning Dragon to Special Summon LV5 from the hand, or even just Normal Summon it. I personally like the Dragon Deck idea better than an Armed Dragon Deck, only because the Dragon Deck would function better. But that’s just me…

And that concludes my lengthy review of the Armed Dragons. As much as I like the idea of the Armed Dragons, I don’t think they are monsters that work well. Try them out if you’d like, but don’t get your hopes up.

Advanced Format (All LVs): 3/5. The number of cards in your hand is irrelevant in Advanced, and there aren’t many mass monster removal cards, which Armed Dragons are good at.
Traditional Format (All LVs)t: 2/5. The number of cards in your hand is very important in Traditional, and there many better mass monster removal cards available, which don’t help out the Armed Dragons.
Art (All LVs): 4.5/5. I really like all the Armed Dragons. With the exception of LV7, they all look like they could be Toon Monsters. 


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