Pojo's Yu-Gi-Oh! news, tips, strategies and more!

Card Game
Card of the Day
TCG Fan Tips
Top 10 Lists
Banned/Restricted List
Yu-Gi-Oh News
Tourney Reports
Duelist Interviews

Featured Writers
Baneful's Column
Anteaus on YGO
General Zorpa
Dark Paladin's Dimension
Retired Writers

Releases + Spoilers
Booster Sets (Original Series)
Booster Sets (GX Series)
Booster Sets (5D Series)
Booster Sets (Zexal Series)

Starter Decks
Yugi | Kaiba
Joey | Pegasus
Yugi 2004 | Kaiba 2004
GX: 2006 | Jaden | Syrus
5D: 1 | 2 | Toolbox
Zexal: 2011 | 2012 | 2013
Yugi 2013 | Kaiba 2013

Structure Decks
Dragons Roar &
Zombie Madness
Blaze of Destruction &
Fury from the Deep
Warrior's Triumph
Spellcaster's Judgment
Lord of the Storm
Invincible Fortress
Dinosaurs Rage
Machine Revolt
Rise of Dragon Lords
Dark Emperor
Zombie World
Spellcaster Command
Warrior Strike
Machina Mayhem
Dragunity Legion
Lost Sanctuary
Underworld Gates
Samurai Warlord
Sea Emperor
Fire Kings
Saga of Blue-Eyes
Cyber Dragon

Promo Cards:
Promos Spoiler
Coll. Tins Spoiler
MP1 Spoiler
EP1 Spoiler

Tournament Packs:
TP1 / TP2 / TP3 / TP4
TP5 / TP6 / TP7 / TP8
Duelist Packs
Jaden | Chazz
Jaden #2 | Zane
Aster | Jaden #3
Jesse | Yusei
Yugi | Yusei #2
Kaiba | Yusei #3

Reprint Sets
Dark Beginnings
1 | 2
Dark Revelations
1 | 2 | 3 | 4
Gold Series
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
Dark Legends
Retro Pack
1 | 2
Champion Pack
1 | 2 | 3 | 4
5 | 6 | 7 | 8
Turbo Pack
1 | 2 | 3 | 4
5 | 6 | 7

Hidden Arsenal:
1 | 2 | 3 | 4
5 | 6 | 7

Brawlermatrix 08
Evan T 08
X-Ref List
X-Ref List w/ Passcodes

Episode Guide
Character Bios
GX Character Bios

Video Games
Millennium Duels (2014)
Nighmare Troubadour (2005)
Destiny Board Traveler (2004)
Power of Chaos (2004)
Worldwide Edition (2003)
Dungeon Dice Monsters (2003)
Falsebound Kingdom (2003)
Eternal Duelist Soul (2002)
Forbidden Memories (2002)
Dark Duel Stories (2002)

About Yu-Gi-Oh
Yu-Gi-Oh! Timeline
Pojo's YuGiOh Books
Apprentice Stuff
Life Point Calculators
DDM Starter Spoiler
DDM Dragonflame Spoiler
The DungeonMaster
Millennium Board Game

Yu Yu Hakusho
Harry Potter
Vs. System

This Space
For Rent

Pojo's Yu-Gi-Oh! Card of the Day
Daily Since 2002!

Solemn Judgment
- #GLD2-EN044 


Card Ratings
Traditional: 4.50
Advanced: Banned 

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

Date Reviewed -
August 28, 2013

Back to the main COTD Page




Solemn Judgment finally bit the bullet and also found it's way to being Banned.  This effects about anyone who plays the game.  You only had one copy at your disposal last Format, now you're left with a Solemn Warning.  This is something that needed to happen a long time ago.  I'm perfectly fine with incredibly powerful, game changing cards being Banned.  It's one less answer you know you'll see in every Deck to worry about.  At least until the next one shows up.

Traditional:  5/5
Advanced:  Banned 
Art:  5/5 

John Rocha

It is no secret to why Solemn Judgment would be banned. It is not called the God card for nothing. The ability to negate summons, spells and traps is amazing. The only thing it can not negate is summons that is the result of a chain like Mystic Tomato and Abyssmegalo. Paying half of your life points is nothing if it stops your opponent’s big play or enables you to make a big push. You typically want to hold onto Solemn Judgment until later in the duel when paying half your life points is not so traumatic.
My guess is that they banned Solemn Judgment just because it is all powerful and they wanted to limit those powerful cards that stopped your big plays and were too powerful in much the same way as Monster Reborn, Heavy Storm, and Thunder King were banned or limited.
Traditional: 5/5
Advanced: 5/5


Solemn Judgment
Counter Trap
When a monster would be Summoned, OR a Spell/Trap Card is activated: Pay half your Life Points; negate the Summon or activation, and if you do, destroy that card.

September 2013 Status: Forbidden (From Limited)

Continuing our look at the banned list we now look at Solemn Judgement which has gone from Limited to Forbidden. Solemn Judgement is basically the ‘stop nearly anything card’ as it can negate summons as well as Spell and Trap cards from activating. For some the main feature of Solemn Judgement is its cost of half your life points, which can make it very expensive.
On one hand it is obvious why this was banned as it can negate 1 card the opponent plays and  a lot of people would be willing to pay the cost. On the other hand, it is balanced the cost is reasonable for what this card can do. It seems that Konami are trying to allow players to summon their big guns, since cards like Bottomless Trap Hole have been affected by the list.
Overall, a strange one to outright ban given it is a balanced card, unlike some other cards on the list, but for many it is one less card that can ruin your strategy.

Traditional: 4/5
Advanced: N/A (Forbidden)


YouTube Site

And we continue our Forbidden cards week with a more controversial change: Solemn Judgment.


Counter Trap Card

When a monster would be Summoned, OR a Spell/Trap Card is activated: Pay half your Life Points; negate the Summon or activation, and if you do, destroy that card.


This card is probably known by every player. It’s famous for being able to stop damn near everything (with notable exceptions such as Monster Effects). But would you believe me if I told you that for the longest time this card was considered bad?


Yep. It’s true. Back in the early days, the game was much slower and a lot less combo oriented. As such, the steep price it takes to activate Solemn Judgment was considered not worth it. It wasn’t until the TeleDAD format that this card started showing up, and in triples no less. During this time, Solemn Judgment was (ironically) considered the most skilled card in the game. A perfectly timed Solemn could grant you victory, while a poorly timed one could spell defeat. That format, while infamous for having only one Deck as truly viable, is looked back upon as one of the most skilled formats, and Solemn definitely took skill back then.


As the game evolved, and combos became more and more important, people began to realize that Solemn Judgment did indeed deserve the Limit it got in September 2009. This card can singlehandedly shut down the most important part of a combo, and therefore could easily shut down the opponent’s entire turn. Funnily enough, how powerful this card is partly relies on the existence of Heavy Storm. In faster paced formats where Heavy is legal, Solemn is powerful, but not stupid. But in slower paced formats where Heavy is banned (like March 2011 and the format we’ll be entering in a matter of days), Solemn suddenly becomes a lot stronger.


Given the fact that we are probably going to see a slower, but still combo-oriented, format, I think Solemn Judgment is a good ban. Only time will tell if we eventually decide it can come back, but I wouldn’t be entirely opposed to it.


Traditional: 4/5 (The FTK fiesta that happens in Traditional probably makes this less optimal)

Advanced: BANNED (5/5 when legal; it was usually one of the first Traps, if not the first, you considered adding to your Deck)


Art: 5/5 (It’s easy to see why this card coined the phrase “God Says NO!”)


Tomorrow: Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game World Championship 2013

Pojo I love comparing new Card of the Day reviews to old reviews.  Check out the Solemn Judgment COTD from August 2002.  Man, don't you feel old now?!


Today we look at my all time favorite Yu-Gi-Oh card, getting banned just as begin dabbling with the game again!  As I am not diving back into the game full force (not even using my own cards), this is not the review for someone wanting a detailed prediction of how the new Ban List will affect the game.


Check out all eight of these previous reviews!  I do get a bit scary weird and rant-y in some of them.



Solemn Judgment is a Counter-Trap.  Being a Trap of course makes the card a relatively slow play – has to be Set and survive through your End Phase barring the effects of certain, other cards and you need to eat up a Spell/Trap Zone until after its resolved.  Not the harshest of requirements, and in exchange you enjoy that wonderful Spell Speed of three, only matched by other Counter Traps.  This has the added benefit of often blocking further cards stacking onto the resolution chain.



At the cost of half of your Life Points, you are able to negate the Summon of a Monster or the activation of a Spell or Trap.  You cannot negate the Summon of a Monster if the act of summoning it is resolving as part of a chain; this can get a little confusing as even some monsters that Summon themselves through an effect do so in chain, while very similar monsters have subtle wording differences that mean they do not.


While the coverage is not perfect, it is the most thorough in the game; while you cannot negate a Monster’s effect direction, you usually can just negate its Summon for the same end result.  It should also be noted that the cost is a “cost” in the game mechanical sense; if your opponent negates your Solemn Judgment, those Life Points are still gone.  In spite of the risk, this is an amazingly powerful effect; the fewer Life Points you have, the less expensive Solemn Judgment is to Activate, and unless the ruling was reversed you round up fractional Life Points and thus, you can always pay for Solemn Judgment.



Solemn Judgment debuted all the way back in the second English set, Metal Raiders.  Early on it was used sparingly; while it was incredibly versatile, the steep LP cost was considered far too much to run it or run it over the usual deck mainstays, though keeping at least one in your Side Deck was common.  Desiring to be different and being a huge fan of this card, I regularly ran three in my Main Deck for quite some time, whether appropriate (Suicide Beatdown) or not (most other things).  Eventually I gave up on it and stopped even running it in my Side Deck.  Then I ended up taking a break from Yu-Gi-Oh almost entirely and when I came back, Solemn Judgment was everywhere!  Why?


First, as the player base matured it began to figure out how to use Solemn Judgment well and how to properly value the effect.  A set Solemn Judgment that was nailed by your opponent’s Mystical Space Typhoon was like a free negation of said Mystical Space Typhoon; it might still matter an effect was in play that the successful resolution of a Spell Card triggered, or if your opponent was just “proving” your lone Set Spell/Trap wasn’t Mirror Force, but most of the time it was a good deal.  Collectively players had become skilled at quickly deducing the approximate Life Point value of cards and how negating a single piece of a huge combo could obliterate the combo.


Second, the game had gotten to the point where huge power players were the main method of winning.  While big plays have always mattered, it was now very easy to spot the “key card” that needed to be negated; sometimes because it was the only card your opponent actually needed to “play” that turn, with the effects snowballing into something massive.  The exact key cards often varied, so being able to stop a key Monster, Spell, or Trap with a single card elevated Solemn Judgment to a near and often true “staple”.  Half your Life Points are always worth it to guarantee the win or ensure you don’t lose this turn.


As Yu-Gi-Oh has developed over time all the aspects that made Solemn Judgment great have increased in prominence, not diminished.  It was often well worth 4000 Life Points (the cost when Activating a Solemn Judgment with full, starting Life Points) because either enough cards were wasted by the effect or you stand to gain enough Life Point advantage to compensate.  In fact, this makes Solemn Judgment too good; part of what made Solemn Judgment seem balanced before was the steep cost early game, usually hard to justify.


So the card I once touted as being perfectly balanced proved to be anything but.




Traditional: If you don’t win first turn, you probably want this down to prevent your opponent from winning on his or her next turn. 4.5/5


Advanced: We can no longer use it here. Forbidden/5



Unless it is brought back later (and I shudder to think of what cards could justify that), Solemn Judgment will now be “The best negation card you can’t play!”  Utterances of “God says ‘No!’” are now restricted to the Traditional format.

Copyrightę 1998-2013 pojo.com
This site is not sponsored, endorsed, or otherwise affiliated with any of the companies or products featured on this site. This is not an Official Site.