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

Spirit Reaper

This card is not destroyed as a result of battle. Destroy this card when it is targeted by the effect of a Spell, Trap, or Effect Monster. If this card successfully attacks your opponent's Life Points directly, your opponent discards 1 card randomly from his/her hand.

Type - Zombie / Effect
Card Number - DR1-EN024

Card Ratings
Traditional: 4.08
Advanced: 4.67

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

Date Reviewed - 01.26.06


ExMinion OfDarkness
Spirit Reaper

Even WITH Dark World out, he's still sick and wrong.

Players just aren't scared enough of Dark World to not play this guy until they actually see the Dark World monster hit the table in front of them. Our most recent SJC champion ran double-Don and double-Reaper on his way to the top, even with Dark World being legal at the time, and it sure didn't stop him.

Even if the opponent is running the anti-discard deck, Spirit Reaper isn't a dead draw like Don Zaloog is; he's still a powerful defensive wall that either makes the opponent waste a Smashing or a card effect to get him out of the way. Next duel, side out Dons, leave in Reapers.

Without Scaepgoat in threes, nowhere near as many people are playing Trample. Lack of Trample + lack of monsters being played who can take Reaper out on his own = Reaper still holding his own even without the discarding.

3.5/5 Traditional
5/5 Advanced


Stats                : Spirit Reaper is a Level 3 Monster, allowing it to attack under Level Limit-Area B and Gravity Bind.  It is a hardy combination of Dark and Zombie, giving it much, much support.  It is very weak in terms of ATK and DEF: 300 ATK and only 200 DEF.  At least this means that it can easily be searched via Sangan or searched and Special Summoned via Last Will, Mystic Tomato, and Pyramid Turtle’s respective effect, and slips under Messenger of Peace.  Of course, Spirit Reaper is played for his effects…


Effect(s)            : Spirit Reaper has three effects.  Two are supposed to be positive while the third is supposed to be restrictive.  However, it is possible to have the two good effects backfire or the third effect prove useful.


The actual effects are that Spirit Reaper cannot be destroyed as a result of battle, that it lets you randomly discard a card from your opponent’s hand when you attack them directly with Spirit Reaper, and that Spirit Reaper will destroy itself if it is targeted by an effect.  Note that if it is attacked by a card with an “auto kill” effect, like a Ninja Grandmaster Sasuke or Mystic Swordsman LV2, those count as effect kills, and Spirit Reaper still dies.  If Spirit Reaper attacks directly and the damage is prevented, it won’t cause a discard.  At least one point of damage must go through, so a Kuriboh, or Waboku, or Mask of Weakness would prevent the discard (and in the latter’s case, trigger the self destruct, but only after the damage step).  An effect that would destroy Spirit Reaper that targets it will be what destroys it; it’s just that if it survives an effect then it blows itself up anyway.


Uses and

Combinations  : This is one of the best defensive cards in the game, especially since it is very easy to search from the deck and Special Summon with the slightest adherence to a theme.  Even without that support, it will usually cost the opponent one other card to get rid of it.  If not removal, then a Snatch Steal or the like, and that’s very useful.  If it stalls long enough for you to get ahead, you can switch it to ATK and press the advantage.  Usually, you’re only risking about 1500 LP or so doing this, and it can be well worth it.  It can also be useful with Creature Swap; kick it into ATK mode and swap it for whatever they got then have every Monster of yours attack.  Just make sure it’s for a serious gain (preferably for the win) unless you have access to Trample or a convenient way to destroy Spirit Reaper afterwards.


Trample is, of course, the natural enemy of Spirit Reaper; it can’t die and has a pathetic DEF, so it’s practically a doorway to your LP against Trample effects.  Likewise, effects that target during battle without destroying a Monster, e.g. Gravekeeper’s Assailant can destroy Spirit Reaper due to its self-destruct mechanism, which changes the amount of Monster’s on the opponent’s side of the field, which triggers a replay.


Although rarely seen, there are some fun combos with Spirit Reaper.  It is a natural partner for Strike Ninja, “holding down the fort”, so to speak, when Strike Ninja pulls his disappearing act.  Spirit Barrier is useful since it means that Trample and Direct Attacking Monsters won’t score any damage for going “through” Spirit Reaper.  Perhaps the most fun is Staunch Defender: Spirit Reaper will blow itself up, but it has already been ruled that if the Monster Staunch Defender forces your opponent to attack is destroyed, they can’t attack anything at all.


Most of the time though, it’ll be used like I said in the first paragraph.




Traditional       : 3.5/5-Very nice: forces the use of that Monster removal ahead of schedule.  It is very lame using a Raigeki on just a face up Spirit Reaper.


Advanced        : 4/5-This card is getting quite common now.  If a deck is Dark or Zombie, it needs a real good reason to not run this card.  Then it works in most other decks as well.


Limited            : 5/5-This card is sick here, as it can often ensure you at least don’t lose.  Yes, there are many useful effect Monsters in the sets Spirit Reaper is in, but getting it all off to blow up Reaper is far from easy.



I am starting to understand the desire for a Restriction or Semi-Restriction of Spirit Reaper.  At least for the moment, I believe the effectiveness of Spirit Reaper comes from certain inherent flaws with the game design; if those flaws are addressed, he remains good but not broken.  Given the low odds of this and the effectiveness of Spirit Reaper in the current format, I worry.  In other words, Spirit Reaper is a good Monster: use it unless it clashes with another theme.



Spirit Reaper is the Metagame holder of card advantage. Spirit Reaper
is always meant for that little attack for the amazing effect of
discarding a card.

But Spirit Reaper doesn't stop there, it can't be destroyed in battle. Making Spirit Reaper a wall and tribute bait for next turn if you wish to is game breaking. Spirit Reaper will though be destroyed if it is targeted by anything.

The reason Spirit Reaper is game breaking is because it limits ways for the opponent to break open the game. Spirit Reaper has got to be one of my favorite cards because it is so reliable.

If Spirit Reaper isn't in your deck there better be some good reason.
But for me, 3 Spirit Reapers cause a good environment for my safety of life points and a dangerous one for my opponent.

Traditional: 4.5/5.0
Advanced: 5.0/5.0
Art: 4.5/5.0

Hey even 5.0/5.0 Silver Age, Golden, Modern..........Coin Flip can continue this....

Coin Flip
Spirit Reaper is insanely better than Don Zaloog.

Right now, the decks to be playing are contesting for the #1 slot. This gives you leverage over all of them. Don Zaloog is crap, friends, against almost every single deck out there. Against a Stein OTK, both suck. Against a Dark World, Spirit Reaper has the advantage of letting the opponent's large 2300 ATK monsters know they can suck it. Against flipflop control, a Dekoichi will not suicide into it for a -1. Against Warriors, it can sit there and relax while large armies roll right into it. Against Bazoo, it laughs at all 5 monsters they have on their field and then laughs again.

The logical problem with Don is that he dies very easily to Breakers without counters, Dekoichis who have recently flipped for an extra card, Mystic Tomatoes, D. D. Warrior Ladies, opposing D. D. Assailants… The card dies easily to everything in the environment. If you think it's a good idea to do something like, Iunno, kill a Sangan with this, you're dead wrong. Arguably, the only monsters with under 1400 ATK have already replaced themselves if you're doing battle damage. Magical Merchant? Huh, it flipped. That's a +1. Magician of Faith? You betcha. Sangan? That'll replace itself soon enough. Mystic Swordsman LV2? Oh yeah. But that's alright, right? Because you still did damage and killed a monster…

Nope. Don Zaloog is weak. He falls into the third category of monsters I wrote about in my review of Shinato… He has to pull his effect off so that he can replace himself, because otherwise he is a worthless card. Don Zaloog will die. He will die quickly and he will die painfully, probably by looking at Breaker the Magical Warrior's sword with his one remaining eye for the short period of time he still has it. Good game.

Spirit Reaper has all the same stuff… Lower ATK, yes… Dies if targeted whatsoever, yes… Hell, not as searchable, yes… But the lower ATK and the not searchable are, in respective order, not an issue and a misnomer. Don Zaloog has access to two searchers in the game, RotA and Mystic Tomato. Spirit Reaper has Mystic Tomato and Pyramid Turtle. The low ATK is counteracted by the effect which makes its stats not matter. It cannot die by battle. Don Zaloog can only dream of such effectivity.

And the targeting thing isn't that big a deal. The few cards that actually target in your average deck are Brain Control/Soul Exchange (if Soul Control), Nobleman of Crossout, Snatch Steal, Sakuretsu Armor and Call/Premature. Not being able to revive him is a small loss, Nobleman of Crossout isn't an issue, and him killing himself is actually a pretty good thing; imagine the pain that would be caused by seeing your discarder Snatch'd or Brain'd from you and then having your hand destroyed by him.

Hell, Spirit Reaper didn't even get an art edit. It wins SO much.

Spirit Reaper: 1092657019432
Don Zaloog: 0

Traditional: 1.3/5
Try discard here, and you will die miserably.
Advanced: 5/5


Spirit Reaper

Welcome to the card that sees more abuse then a red-headed step child in this format. This is your big "Tomato control" guy really. Its been cookied by the increase in aggressive decks. He has two purposes. When you need the time you can use it for stall/defense against the opponent's threats. Then when the time is right he can switch to the offensive spectacularly by nailing resources from the hand.

Many people have taken a personnal preference of this guy over Don Zaloog for hand control slots. He's vicious when used intelligently and always annoying to see played.

dawnyoshi Let the other reviewers tell you how ridiculous Spirit Reaper is right now. You can’t escape a tournament without seeing two or fifty decks running multiple copies of this guy.

In traditional, you either are putting this guy into ATK mode so Magical Scientist just KILLS you, or you are allowing Dark World to kill you. Take your pick. This card doesn’t work here.

Advanced: 4.5/5
Traditional: 1/5

Dark Paladin
Spirit Reaper hmm...

What do you really want me to tell you about Spirit Reaper that you don't know. It can't be destroyed by battle, and is immediately destroyed if targeted. The first is good, but the latter is bad. Just wait for us (someday) to get Marshmallon, the superior Spirit Reaper.

It has the White Magical Hat effect, but with 300 attack, you'll need a clear field 99.85% of the time to get that effect. However, Airknight and Exarion Universe pawn this card, as does trample in general.


4/5 all around, and with good cause

Art: 3.5/5

You stay classy, Planet Earth :)

Spirit Reaper:
A card discovered by burn decks, that's good in any control-inclined deck.

Spirit Reaper is one of the best defenses in Yugioh.
He doesn't die unless your opponent does something other than attack it. This means your opponent has to use something he might have used to otherwise kill your Jinzo, DD Assailant, or Winged Kuriboh (heck, why not?).
Then, if your opponent has an open field and a hand with something in it, this guy/thing can "Reap" them for a spectacular 300 damage and one card. Everyone loves Don Zaloog, so why not love this? Use him if you find you lack field prescence, use Mystic Tomato, use Zombies, or like discarding cards (with weenies).

Traditional: 3/5 (too many better methods and mass
Advanced: 4.5/5

Share and enjoy,
Dark Maltos Spirit Reaper

Spirit Reaper rocks. Un destroyable in battle, and a nice built in discard effect. If Spirit Reaper tags up with Don, you’re in for some hurt.

This things abusable in a Zombie deck too.

THE stall monster, and a real lifesaver.

It’s not all good news though. If this card’s targeted, as we all know, it goes bye bye. That means Snatch Steal, Brain control or Game Controller and your walls been taken down. Oh and watch out for trample. Air knight is the master of this card. Spirit Reaper has too low stats to be truly safe in any mode, so use it’s discard attack wisely.

Still, Spirit Reaper owns. I’ve been running one long before they became tier one. I still use my original one.

Traditional 4/5 Control, AND dark - Lethal

Advanced : 5/5 - Tier one, a definitely should be in every side deck at least.

Art : 4/5 - I’ve always liked the design of a grim reaper.

Bob Doily
Spirit Reaper

+1 !!!1!!!one!!!1!shift+one!!1111 That simple +1 in card advantage could sum up reaper in a nutshell, but even in an era when generating +1s is key Spirit Reaper is so much more. His stats are amazing, Dark Zombie 3/300/200. Dark = chaos and Strike Ninja fodder. Zombie means playability in Zombie decks as both Pyramid Turtle and Book of Life are Reaper support. Meanwhile his lv3 allows you to get under both Gravity Bind and Level Limit-Area B, while 300/200 means searchable via the elemental searchers and Sangan. All in all he is extremely versatile.

If that wasn’t enough whenever he gets in a direct attack you get a +1. Now at first that sounds like a fair tradeoff, but with so much 1:1 removal and with the infamous Cyber Dragon to Reaper drop he has become a very important part of this format, essentially defining it right along with Cyber Dragon and D. D. Assailant.

And if his versatility and card advantage wasn’t enough, he survives in battle. So those decks that like to generate card advantage by killing off your monsters are essentially shut down by this. Living through battle is extremely nice, but once again the large amount of removal will let you get in further +1s from reaper. The only downside is that he is killed when targeted, a weakness, but a fair weakness for all the benefits that you gain.

Some are worried about Dark World, but the deck type is far to unstable to really be able to deal with current control decks. Yes it will hurt, but you will probably still win that game, and if you don’t you can always adjust your play style for game 2. Besides Reaper can always be a wall against the Dark World monsters…..

Overall, if you are running any sort of control deck right now, there is absolutely no reason not to main Spirit Raper, if not multiples as a lot of control decks are doing.

Traditional: 4/5
Advanced: 4.7/5

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