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See, I know my two Heroes aren't powerful by themselves, but if I can form them together, it's another story.— Jaden Yuki on the Fusion potential of "Elemental HERO" monsters.
"Elemental HERO" (Japanese:
They were designed by Kazuki Takahashi, and are themed after comic-book superheroes from the anime and are based off natural elements in the manga.
"Elemental HERO" Decks focus heavily on Fusion Summoning. Most of these fall into two primary "Elemental HERO" monsters categories that can be fused with one another. Normal Monsters from the TV series (Named Materials for Fusion Summoning) and manga counterparts that are retrained versions with effects (Fusion Materials are generic). See 'Grouping' section for more information.
"Avian", "Burstinatrix", "Clayman" and "Bubbleman" are often grouped together because there is at least one Fusion Monster for each pair of them (except "Avian" and "Clayman"), as well as "Elemental HERO Electrum" using all 4 as Fusion Materials.
"Sparkman" was introduced very early on and is usually on cards like "Fifth Hope" and "HERO's Bond". "Sparkman" has the most fusions of any Elemental HERO, other than "Neos", with a grand total of 6 ("Thunder Giant", "Tempest", "Shining Flare Wingman", "Shining Phoenix Enforcer", "Plasma Vice", and "Darkbright").
The manga "Elemental HERO" monsters (unoffically called "Omni Heroes") are also grouped together since they don't have fusions with the anime "Elemental HERO" monsters. These include "Ocean", "Woodsman", "Heat", and "Lady Heat".
The Elemental HEROes' designs are based after the western comics' heroes. In the Japanese version, their nomenclature is "Elemental HERO (term related to its element) "man" (for the masculine heroes, with the exceptions of "Prisma" and every "Neos"). The only feminine heroes are "Burstinatrix", "Lady Heat", "Poison Rose" and "Shadow Mist" (the first two having "Lady" instead of "Man" in their Japanese name). Some of the names are changed in the English version.
As the name says, the "Elemental HEROes" each represent an element of nature. In western culture, the main elements are fire, water, air, earth, light and darkness, but in eastern culture, more elements are considered, such as lightning, wood, metal and ice, though ice is many times not considered since it's part of "water".
The manga doesn't follow the same theme as the anime, but the heroes are still based around those same elements.
"Elemental HERO" decks mainly focus on swarming the field with Fusion Monsters, using cards like "Polymerization" and "Miracle Fusion". For "Elemental HERO" Fusion Monsters with specified names, "King of the Swamp" and other Fusion Substitute Monsters are very useful. They also have access to Rank 4 Xyz Monsters due to cards like "Elemental HERO Bubbleman" and "A Hero Lives". "Instant Fusion" can also be used to summon "Elder Entity Norden and a level 4 WATER monster, then Xyz Summoning "Bahamut Shark" and using it's effect to summon "Toadally Awesome". Lastly, they can be used as a bridge to the "Masked HEROes".
As with the release of the "Omni HEROs" (Attribute-specifc Fusion Monsters), as well as the 2 Extra Deck "Vision HEROs ("Vision Hero Adoration and "Vision HERO Trinity"), all "Elemental HEROs" can be fused together with each other, as well as other "HEROs". The "Omni HEROs" basically allow the "Elemental HEROs" to exist in any deck focused on an archetype of monsters with the same Attribute, and each Attribute allows these "Elemental HEROs" access to Attribute-specific support cards, such as "Salvage".
Perhaps the best part of an "Elemental HERO" deck is the search/recovery power. Cards like "Salvage", "Shadow Mist", "Blazeman", "Legacy of a HERO", "Fusion Recovery", "Elemental HERO The Shining", "E - Emergency Call" and "Reinforcement of the Army can be used to go into many pluses.
There is a great combo using Mask Change, Elemental HERO Absolute Zero, and Masked HERO Acid. First fuse any HERO monster and a Water Attribute monster with Polymerization, or any card that can fuse monsters, to get Elemental HERO Absolute Zero. Use Mask Change to send Elemental HERO Absolute Zero back to the Graveyard and summon Masked HERO Acid, remember that when Elemental HERO Absolute Zero is removed from the field, it destroys all of your opponent's monsters, and Masked HERO Acid's effect says that when it is summoned to the field, all of your opponent's Spells/Traps are destroyed, effectively clearing your opponent's field. This combo works perfectly because Masked HERO Acid only needs a Water Attribute monster like Elemental HERO Absolute Zero and a Change card to be Summoned.
Lastly, due to their high recovery and "Elemental HERO Honest Neos", "Elemental HEROes" won't be stopped by disabling Special Summons as their non-Fusion Monsters can stand on their own until Special Summoning is allowed again.
- "Elemental HERO" Decks lack protection on their own, and need generic protection cards outside of the archetype.
- Unless you're using "Masked HEROes", they have very little Quick-Play and Trap Cards to use, so they are unable to disrupt the opponent's plays, save for "Honest Neos" and "Absolute Zero".
- "Gozen Match" is particularly annoying due to their many Attributes.
- Finally, "Skill Drain" and/or "Angel O7" can cease and desist "HERO" effects, which would be significant against these Decks because without substantial Spell/Trap support, many of the "HERO" monsters, including quite a number of "HERO" Fusion Monsters, do not possess significant sustainability stat-wise whilst on the field.