Card Trivia:The Winged Dragon of Ra

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  • During the Tournament Finals arc, a new effect of this card was revealed in each Duel it was Summoned.
    • In Jonouchi and Rishid's Duel, when Rishid Summoned the counterfeit copy, he revealed that "Ra" gained the ATK of the monsters that were Tributed to Tribute Summon it.
    • In Mai and Marik's Duel, when Mai Summoned it after taking it from Marik with the effect of "Amazoness Chain Master", the first power of "Ra" was revealed: "God himself will serve the player to utters the ancient text" (hieratic text that only appeared when "Ra" was Summoned). This text had to be spoken aloud in order to unlock it from Sphere Mode and gain control of "Ra". As Mai was unable to, Marik did so, and he gained control of "Ra", transforming it from Sphere Mode to Battle Mode.
    • In Bakura and Marik's Duel), the second power of "Ra" was revealed: When Special Summoned from the Graveyard, its controller could pay Life Points to increase its ATK by the same amount. This ability was known as "Point-to-Point Transfer" ("One-Turn Kill" in Japanese). Additionally, when Special Summoned from the Graveyard, it could attack instantly, attacking all monster's on the opponent's field and then attacking the opponent directly.
    • In Jonouchi and Marik's Duel, the third power of "Ra" was revealed: the God Phoenix, also known as the "Final Form". In this Mode, it was capable of attacking instantly.
    • In Yugi and Marik's Duel, a different effect or addendum to a previous effect was revealed each time it was Summoned.
      • The first time it was Summoned, it was revealed that the Phoenix Mode of "Ra" is immune to destruction, can attack during the opponent's turn, and that this attack can destroy another God Card.
      • The second time it was Summoned, Yami Marik revealed that he could Tribute other monsters to increase the ATK of "Ra" by the Tributed monsters' total ATK.
      • The third time it was Summoned, it was revealed that even in Battle Mode, "Ra" is immune to the effects of God Cards that are lower in the divine hierarchy.
  • UDE representatives used a copy of "The Winged Dragon of Ra" which had a different image and the hieratic text in the place of the flavor text.[citation needed]
  • In the manga, anime and several video games, "The Winged Dragon of Ra" depended on being Special Summoned from the Graveyard to activate certain effects. In contrast, the OCG/TCG version of "Ra" cannot be Special Summoned.
  • The first art for the legal version of "Ra" looks very different from its original version. It is gold-colored instead of the dull yellow from the old version; it has 4 claws instead of 3 on the original; it has the shoulder pads and arch that the anime features while the original did not; it has a feather tail instead of a long lizard-like one (this is actually different from the anime); it has an eagle-like beak without any teeth (as featured in the Season 5 opening and in the manga version of the Millennium World arc, but not in any episode of the anime). However, later reprints of the legal version have used the original art.
    • The anime design for "Ra" has never been used in TCG/OCG card art.
  • The effects of the legal "Ra" differ significantly from its original counterpart: The original was not affected by any effect regardless of the current turn, and most notably was not unable to be Special Summoned. Several of the effects of "Ra" have been reconstructed in the form of other cards in the TCG/OCG.
  • Marik Ishtar stated in Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist - Volume 024 that the "Ra" was the most powerful of the 3 "Gods", even being considered in another class between the three "Gods". This foreshadowed the Divine Hierarchy.
  • This card's first print as an Effect Monster did not have a border around its artwork. All reprints that use that same artwork also lack a border.
  • In the anime and manga, despite using "The Winged Dragon of Ra" many times, Marik never Tribute Summoned it; instead, he always Special Summoned it from the Graveyard with "Monster Reborn". Instead of gaining ATK from monsters Tributed for its Tribute Summon, Marik used its ATK increasing effects (although the first time he used it in a Duel, he took control of it from Mai, so it had ATK due to the monsters Mai Tributed for its Tribute Summon). Whenever any other Duelist Summoned "Ra" in the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime, it was Normal Summoned.
    • In Yu-Gi-Oh! GX episode 085: "Rah, Rah, Ra!", Franz Tribute Summoned "Ra", but used its ATK increasing effects regardless, and even used Yami Marik's version of the hieratic chant. When Jaden Special Summoned it from Franz's Graveyard, he used its ATK increasing effects.
    • No Duelist in the anime has ever won a Duel after Normal Summoning "Ra".
  • The background of this card's primary artwork was used in the video game Yu-Gi-Oh! Forbidden Memories as one of the Forbidden Ruins wall designs. In the international version of Forbidden Memories, the hexagrams in the background were replaced with hexagons, despite them not being replaced in this card's international artwork.

Egyptian history[edit]

  • Ra ( and later Amun-Ra; reconstructed as *ri:ʕu) is the ancient Egyptian sun god. He was the major deity in ancient Egyptian religion by the fifth dynasty. Identified primarily with the mid-day sun, the chief cult centre of Ra first was based in Heliopolis (ancient Inunu), meaning, "City of the Sun".
  • In later Egyptian dynastic times, Ra was subsumed into the god Horus, as Re-Horakhty (and many variant spellings). He commanded sky, earth, and underworld.
  • The color gold in Ancient Egypt represented divinity and becoming a god. In a myth, Ra, as a man, had golden-colored skin and lapis lazuli-colored hair. This is similar to the golden metal scales and the blue gem on its head in the card image.
  • According to E. A. Wallis Budge, he was the one god of Egyptian monotheism, of which all other deities were aspects, manifestations, phases, or forms of this deity. Ra itself, however, was also a monotheistic god. A Hymn to Ra (c. 1370s BC) was written to stress the pantheistic nature of Ra to combat encroaching polytheism. In it, several deities are described, not as beings in their own right, but certain forms of Ra. For example:
    • "Praise be unto thee, O Ra, thou exalted Power, who dost enter into the habitations of Ament, behold [thy] body is Atum."
    • "Praise be unto thee, O Ra, thou exalted Power, who dost enter into the hidden palace of Anubis, behold [thy] body is Khepera."
  • The Bennu bird (the Egyptian correspondence to the phoenix) is Ra's ba (soul) and a symbol of fire and rebirth. The sun disk, also shown as the hieroglyphic ⊙; Ankh, symbolizing the life given by the sun; Obelisk, representative of the rays of the sun and worshipped as a home of a solar god; Pyramids, aligned east/west; Falcon; Bull; Uraeus, a cobra commonly seen wrapped around the sun disk. As the sun, Ra was thought to see everything.
  • As Atum, Ra was believed to have fathered Shu and Tefnut, who in turn bore Geb, Nut. These in turn were the parents of Osiris, Isis, Seth, Nephthys, and Horus the Elder [Uncle of Horus]. All nine (except Horus the Elder) made up the Heliopolitan Ennead.

Hieratic text[edit]

  • In the Japanese version of the anime and manga, the hieratic text printed on the card lists three of this card's abilities. In the Japanese manga, when Marik and Atem read the text, hieratic text appears in the speech bubbles; in the Japanese anime, they chant an incomprehensible language.
  • The following is the translation of the hieratic text, produced by Seto Kaiba in Yu-Gi-Oh! - Duel 248 in the Japanese version of the manga.
    • 1st ability: "Ra shall acquire the power of three tributes. However, only those who offer the ancient incantation to heaven shall God follow."
    • 2nd ability: "God shall revive from earth. By offering the Ritual of Revival and his own life, one shall be united with God, and all enemies on the battlefield shall be incinerated."
    • 3rd ability: "In an instant, God shall become a Phoenix, and all evil spirits chosen by it shall repose on earth."

Great beast of the sky, please hear my cry.
Transform thyself from orb of light and bring me victory in this fight.
Envelop the desert with your glow and cast your rage upon my foe.
Unlock your powers deep within so that together we may win.
Appear in this Shadow Game as I call your name,
Winged Dragon of Ra!

Almighty protector of the sun and sky, I beg of thee, please heed my cry.
Transform thyself from orb of light and bring me victory in this fight.
I beseech thee, grace our humble game.
But first I shall call out thy name,
Winged Dragon of Ra!