Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel: Thunder Dragon deck build (2022)

A classic archetype.

Image via Konami

One of the first Effect Monsters to be released in the Yu-Gi-Oh! card game was Thunder Dragon. Thunder Dragon didn’t see much play in the early days of the TCG, but over the years, an archetype centered around the deck was brewing. Konami released a wide swath of different “Thunder Dragon” cards, making this archetype not only viable, but powerful as well. And, many of those cards are in Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel.

So, how can you build a Thunder Dragon deck in Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel? Let’s go over our recommendations.

Monsters

Thunder Dragon Monsters are pivotal to setting up big plays. Here’s a look at recommended cards:

  • (x3) Maxx “C” – Handtrap that adds draw power, as one card can be added to hand per Special Summon during the turn it was activated. Very helpful in also dissuading opposing players from swarming the field, especially since this deck prefers to go second in most cases.
  • (x3) Ash Blossom and Joyous Spring – Can negate a multitude of different cards, including Maxx “C.”
  • (x3) Aloof Lupine – Can banish one Monster from hand and deck when Normal Summoned. Ideal targets are Dragondark, and Dragonhawk.
  • (x3) Thunder Dragondark – Can be discarded, and add another one of this card to hand. Can add one Thunder Dragon card to hand when banished.
  • (x3) Thunder Dragonmatrix – Has multiple effects, but mainly used either as a target to summon Colossus (while on field), or for Thunder Dragon Titan’s effect.
  • (x3) Thunder Dragon – Will very rarely be summoned, but its effect will be used to thin deck, and set up for Thunder Dragon Colossus.
  • (x2) Thunder Dragonroar – Semi-limited card. Adds a banished Thunder Card to hand, and can Special Summon a Thunder Dragon Monster from deck in Defense Position.
  • (x1) Thunder Dragonhawk – Limited to one copy. Can be discarded from hand, and can then Special Summon banished Thunder Dragon card. If Dragonhawk is sent from the field to GY or banished, can shuffle any number of cards from hand to deck, and then draw the same number.
  • (x1) Thunder Dragonduo (optional) – Can be Special Summoned by banishing one LIGHT or DARK Monster from the field. Not needed, but can be used as an extra way to banish Dragondark.
  • (x1) White Dragon Wyverburster (optional) – Can be Special Summoned by banishing one DARK Monster from GY. Synergizes well with the deck, since it runs both LIGHT and DARK Monster. Really should only be used if you plan on running the Dragon Link variant.
  • (x1-x2) Black Dragon Collapserpent (optional) – Can be Special Summoned by banishing one LIGHT Monster from GY. Should only be used if you plan on running the Dragon Link variant.
  • (x1-x2) Batteryman Solar (optional) – Can send one Thunder Monster from deck to GY when Normal or Special Summoned.

The key to this deck is the Extra Deck, but the Main Deck Monsters are, nonetheless, important. Thunder Dragon Main Deck Monsters are mainly used to set up the board for the Extra Deck. Cards like Thunder Dragon and Dragondark are needed to help set off Colossus’ effect. Aloof Lupine can help set up the board by getting Dragondark in the banished area, or Dragonroar, in order to get a Monster on the field for Colossus.

Other cards that can be used for this deck include Chaos Dragon Levianeer, Nibiru. The Primal Being and Nemesis Corridor. Additionally, Despia Monsters also synergize well with Thunder Dragons.

Spells

Now, let’s go over the Spells:

  • (x3) Allure of Darkness – Can banish a DARK Monster from hand (i.e. Dragondark), and draw two cards from the deck. Adds draw power.
  • (x2-x3) Thunder Dragon Fusion – Used to Fusion Summon either Titan or Colossus. Can also add a Thunder Monster from deck to hand, when banished from GY.
  • (x2) Called by the Grave – Banishes Monster from opponent’s GY and negates its effects. Mainly used to negate handtraps.
  • (x1) Gold Sarcophagus – Limited to one copy. Banish one card face-up from the deck. Will be added to hand in the second Standby Phase after activation, but primarily, this will be to target Thunder Dragondark and very rarely ever gets handed back to hand.
  • (x1-x3) Chaos Space (optional) – Not the best fit, but can be used with the right deck setup. Send a LIGHT or DARK monster from hand to GY, and then add another LIGHT or DARK Monster that can’t be Normal Summoned or Set (White or Black Dragon)
  • (x1-x2) Lightning Storm (optional) – Not needed, but can be used to remove cards from the field. Destroys Attack Position or Spell/Trap Cards from the opponent’s side of the field. Must possess no face-up cards to activate.
  • (x2-x3) Crossout Designator (optional) – Can negate handtraps staples, and Spell/Trap staples that are also run in your deck.
  • (x3) Forbidden Droplet (optional) – Quick-Play Spell that can reduce ATK of opponent’s Monster, and negate its effect at cost of sending card(s) to GY from hand or field, equal to the number of targeted Monsters.
  • (x2) Cosmic Cyclone (optional) – Quick-Play Spell that can banish a Spell or Trap, at a cost of 1000 LP.
  • (x1) Instant Fusion – Special Summons a low Level Fusion Monster from the Extra Deck. Can be used to summon Kaminari Attack, which can be sacked off Colossus.
  • (x1) Harpie’s Feather Duster (optional) – Staple Spell that destroys all Spells/Traps on the opponent’s side of the field. Can be used in lieu of Lightning Storm.

As noted above, there are really only four Spell cards that are absolutely necessary for this deck. We do recommend using optional cards like Lightning Storm, Forbidden Droplet and/or Crossout Designator, to deal with floodgates and backrow. But, just make sure to keep the deck limit to 40.

Traps

Much like many of the meta decks currently seeing play in Master Duel, Thunder Dragons don’t run Traps at all. Instead, these decks typically make use of Spells that pop cards, add drawing power, and complement banish effects that are related to the archetype.

Extra Deck

Here’s a look at the Extra Deck options:

  • (x2-x3) Thunder Dragon Titan – Boss Monster of the deck. Can be Fusion Summoned with TDF, or Special Summoned by banishing one Thunder Monster from hand, and one you control. Has a quick effect that can destroy one card on the field when a Thunder Monster’s effect is activated in hand. The effect is ideal for a Monster that has quick effects (i.e. Dragonmatrix and Dragondark).
  • (x1) Thunder Dragon Colossus – Limited to one copy. Can be Fusion Summoned with TDF, or Special Summoned by tributing one Thunder-type Monster (i.e. Kaminari Attack, Dragonmatrix) on the field. 2600 ATK Monster that shuts down an opponent’s ability to add cards from the deck to hand, except by drawing. Big Turn 1 card.
  • (x1) Linkuriboh – Link 1 Monster that can turn one Monster’s ATK to 0 when targeted for attack. Need Dragonmatrix in order to summon.
  • (x1) Relinquished Anima – Can suck up a Monster on the field it points to, and equip it to Anima. Need Dragonmatrix in order to summon.
  • (x1) Cross-Sheep – Versatile Link 2 Monster that can Special Summon one Level 4 or lower Monster to field, from your GY, when a Fusion Monster is summoned to zone Cross-Sheep points to.
  • (x1) Some Summer Summoner – Link 2 Monster than can target one Thunder Monster in your, and Special Summon it to zone it points it. Like Cross-Sheep, can be used as an extender.
  • (x1) Knightmare Phoenix – Link 2 Monster that can destroy one Spell/Trap on field.
  • (x1) Predaplant Verte Anaconda –  Link 2 Monster that can gain Thunder Dragon Fusion’s effect and Fusion Summon Colossus or Titan. Limited to one copy.
  • (x1) Lyna the Light Charmer, Lustrous – Link 2 Monster that can be used in instances where the opponent is using LIGHT Monsters (i.e. Eldlich, Drytron). Can Special Summon one LIGHT Monster from the opponent’s GY to your side of the field.
  • (x1) Knightmare Unicorn – Link 3 Monster that can target one card on the field and shuffle it into the deck.
  • (x1) Apollousa, Bow of the Goddess – Link 4 Monster that acts as a major Floodgate thanks to its negation ability. Mainly a Turn 1 target.
  • (x1) Accesscode Talker – Link 4 Monster that should be Special Summoned with Link 3 Monster, as it can raise Accesscode’s ATK to 5300. Can also pop cards on the opponent’s side of the field.
  • (x1) Kaminari Attack (optional) – Should only be used if Instant Fusion is in the deck. Can be quickly sacked off for Colossus.
  • (x1) Hieractic Seal of the Heavenly Spheres (optional) – Should only be in the deck if Black or White Dragon are used. Can Tribute one Monster on the field (including itself), and return one card on the opponent’s side of the field back to hand.

Thunder Dragon decks typically run an eclectic selection of Extra Deck cards. The goal is to get Thunder Dragon Colossus & Titan out as soon as possible. Main Deck Monsters, as well as Extra Deck options like Verte and Kaminari Attack can help in that regard.

Additionally, Cross-Sheep and Some Summer Summoner are cards that can be used as extenders for Link 3 and 4 Monsters, like Unicorn or Accesscode Talker. The options this deck has, coupled with explosive effects that can be activated off the field, make it an extremely tough out.