“Your destiny is already decided.” At least, that’s what Aster Phoenix believed. For most of the character’s time in the series, he believed everything that happened was preordained by destiny itself. It’s a fatalistic viewpoint, but after he proves capable of defeating Jaden, a protagonist who only lost two other times his entire series, it’s hard to argue with.
Working as the perfect companion to Aster’s philosophy and status as a rival to Jaden, Aster’s deck relied on the power of Destiny Heroes, a collection of dangerous looking monsters that granted him multiple victories over the course of Yu-Gi-Oh! GX. For this list, we’ll be looking at all of his deck and talking about the absolute best cards from the teenage dueling prodigy.
10 DESTINY HERO - DREADMASTER
Aster’s deck was never short on impressive boss monters. Dreadmaster’s effect allows him to destroy all other monsters the player controls besides Destiny Hero monsters, then special summon up to 2 Destiny Heroes from the graveyard. Y’know, like the two that were tributed to summon him. Then, during that turn, Dreadmaster grants all Destiny Heroes an immunity to being destroyed by battle, and allows the player not to take damage with battles involving those monsters. If there’s one drawback, it’s that Dreadmaster’s attack is equal to the ATK of all other Destiny Hero monsters the player controls, and depending on how things play out this could be rather low.
9 D - FORMATION
Formation required Aster to use counters, which can always get a little messy, but the slower pace of the game helped it a lot. Plus, it gained counters off of things which happened naturally during the course of gameplay: having Destiny Hero monsters destroyed. After two or more Destiny Heroes were destroyed, D – Formation could send itself to the graveyard to add up to 2 cards with the same name from the Deck or Graveyard. Like this, Aster could refill his hand for the purposes of new fusions, or more likely, summon a Destiny HERO boss monster, like Plasma or Dogma.
8 D - MIND
D – Mind was a souped up version of D – Spirit, a card which allowed a player to special summon a monster from their hand when they didn’t control any Destiny Hero monsters. Though D – Spirit is decent enough, it still requires the player to have the card they want to special summon. Though D – Mind can only grab level 3 or lower Destiny Heroes, it special summons them from the deck, meaning it only requires itself to work. This is also an easy way into summoning Doom Lord, which is a quick way to banish an opponent’s monster for free.
7 DESTINY END DRAGOON
Destiny End Dragoon is a special fusion monster which was created by the Senrigan Group, the organization responsible for sponsoring Aster and keeping him supplied with great cards and fancy suits. Destiny End Dragoon is made by fusing the other two Destiny Hero boss monsters in the deck: Plasma and Dogma.
That’s quite a bit of work considering all the tributes they require, so Aster is rewarded for his trouble by getting a 3000 ATK and 3000 DEF monster which can destroy his opponents monsters and inflict damage equal to their ATK. Then, if someone does get over Dragoon, it can special summon itself simply by banishing another Destiny Hero in the graveyard. It’s only weakness is that it locks Aster down from battle the turn it uses its effect, but something had to happen to balance it.
6 DESTINY HERO - DOOM LORD
Doom Lord was a sneaky good card. Though it had a measly 600 ATK, it didn’t need to be especially strong thanks to its ability. Doom Lord was able to remove from play any monster on the field at the cost of sacrificing it’s attack. The card’s cost was largely irrelevant, as there was no reason to leave it on the field when the point of all HEROes is to fuse into something else. The opponent’s monster returns on the second standby phase after the card’s activation, but by then they’re already two turns behind—and missing a key card.
5 DESTINY HERO - PLASMA
Destiny Hero – Plasma is pretty weak for it’s summoning requirements. A level 8 which requires three tributes and has 1900 ATK would be infuriating in most cases. But concerns about the card’s power go out the window considering it’s effect allows the card to equip a monster on the opponent’s side of the field to Plasma, granting it half that monster’s ATK and whatever effect that monster has. It also gains an additional effect if D-Force is face up on top of the deck, becoming immune to the opponent’s spells and traps and negating every monster on the opponent’s side of the field. Given how D-Force stops someone from drawing, this additional effect basically ensures a duel is closed out.
4 DESTINY HERO - DOGMA
Destiny Hero – Dogma is an incredible card no matter how we look at it. The only reason it’s not used today is it requires the commitment of running other Destiny Heroes. But Dogma special summons itself by tributing three monsters including a Destiny Hero. Once it’s on the field, for every Standby Phase it exists, it halves the opposing player’s life points. It also has 3400 ATK, meaning whatever the opponent has left won’t be around for terribly long either. This card serves as an incredible closer and is easily the best of all of Aster’s boss monsters.
3 DESTINY HERO - DISK COMMANDER
Disk Commander has an incredibly simple effect. Whenever it’s special summoned from the graveyard, the player can draw two cards. But in Yu-Gi-Oh, the major resource system is the cards in a player’s deck, making this a devastating ability.
It was nerfed in the actual card game to allow only one usage per duel, which should inform most on how excessive things could get. Previously, it had no limit to how many times it could be brought back, meaning it could provide almost endless resources for the controlling player. There’s plenty to say about the weaknesses to Aster Phoenix’s deck, but one weakness it doesn’t have is a lack of draw power.
2 DESTINY HERO - MALICIOUS
Destiny Hero – Malicious comes with a simple enough effect. It can be removed from the graveyard to special summon another from the deck. With that ability, it’s understandable why Malicious’ ATK and DEF are so small—a pathetic 800 for both. If it were actually strong, it’d be a cheap way to get a big body on the field. Even as is, the card made a few appearances in Aster’s duels...and was incredibly relevant in real life. Malicious boosted countless decks during the Fusion and early Synchro era of Yu-Gi-Oh, as a free monster which showed up on the field for essentially nothing.
1 DESTINY DRAW
Every Yu-Gi-Oh fan has at one point or another mentioned the phrase “Destiny Draw” during one of their duels. But to be fair, this is legitimately one of the best cards both in and out of the anime. Destiny Draw allows a player to discard a Destiny Hero to draw two cards. This combo worked incredibly well with Destiny Hero – Malicious, which could banish itself from the graveyard to summon another Malicious from the deck. In other words, with Destiny Draw and Malicious, Aster got two cards and a monster on the field for free. Given he had support like this, no wonder he was able to beat Jaden and Zane.