|It is with heavy hearts that we mourn the passing of our game's creator, Kazuki Takahashi.|
"Crystal Beast", known as "Gem Beast" (
There are seven main Crystal Beasts, each representing a different gemstone and animal. Their boss monster, "Rainbow Dragon", requires 7 different "Crystal Beast" monsters in order to be Summoned. In addition to the 7 main "Crystal Beasts", there is an eighth "Crystal Beast", "Crystal Beast Rainbow Dragon", which is based on "Rainbow Dragon" rather than any specific gemstone.
In the English dub, each of the "Crystal Beast" monsters, except "Ruby Carbuncle", imitates the voice of a real life movie celebrity.
The "Crystal Beasts", whose original name is "Gem Beasts", as their name says, are all animals which have each a different kind of gem in their bodies. Their different gems' colors form the seven colors of the rainbow, reflecting the name and design of their ace, "Rainbow Dragon". Their nomenclature is "Crystal Beast (gem) (animal)", and their attack names are "[gem] [body part/attack]".
The Advanced Crystal Beasts have almost the same attack names as their standard counterparts, but with the addition of "Dark" between the gem and the attack/body part.
|Color||Crystal Beast||Origin||Attack name||Unique effect|
|Red||Ruby Carbuncle||Ruby||Carbuncle||Ruby Sonic||ルビー・フラッシュ
|Special Summon as many "Crystal Beast" monsters from its controller's Spell & Trap Zone as possible when it is Special Summoned.|
|Orange||Amber Mammoth||Amber||Mammoth||Amber Stomp||アンバー・スタンプ
|Redirects an attack targeting another "Crystal Beast" monster on its controller's side of the field to itself.|
|Yellow||Topaz Tiger||Topaz||Tiger||Topaz Incisor Shred||トーパズ・バイト
|Gains 400 ATK when attacking an opponent's monster during the Damage Step.|
|Green||Emerald Tortoise||Emerald||Tortoise||Emerald Cutter||エメラルド・カッター
|Changes one of its controller's monsters that attacked this turn to Defense Position once per turn.|
|Blue||Cobalt Eagle||Cobalt||Eagle||Cobalt Wing||コバルト・ウィング
|Returns a "Crystal Beast" card on its controller's side of the field to the top of their Deck once per turn.|
|Indigo||Sapphire Pegasus||Sapphire||Pegasus||Sapphire Tornado||サファイア・トルネード
|Places a "Crystal Beast" monster from its controller's hand, Deck, or Graveyard face-up in their Spell & Trap Zone as a Continuous Spell Card when it is Summoned.|
|Violet||Amethyst Cat||Amethyst||Cat||Amethyst Power Pounce||アメジスト・ネール
|Attacks the opponent directly, but the battle damage it inflicts when using this effect is halved.|
|Visible spectrum||Rainbow Dragon[a]||N/A||Dragon||N/A||N/A||Special Summons itself from the hand when a "Crystal Beast" monster battles, also it can be banished while treated as a Continuous Spell to Special Summon 1 Level 4 or lower "Crystal Beast" monster from the Deck with its effects negated and add 1 "Ultimate Crystal" monster from the Deck to the hand.|
- Card game original support based on "Rainbow Dragon"; not one of the original 7 "Crystal Beast" monsters.
"Crystal Beast" Decks tend to have a wide variety of searching options for putting "Crystal Beast" cards on the field, either Summoned as monsters or placed in the Spell & Trap Zone as an effect-less Continuous Spell Card, and they have a couple of extra drawing options to speed up the use of the Deck. Because of these effects working in conjuction, "Crystal Beast" users can wind up many cards ahead of their opponent, and the various searching options facilitate the Summoning of "Rainbow Dragon" far quicker than would otherwise be possible. The archetype also supports come-from-behind wins quite easily due to the double whammy of "Crystal Abundance" and the Field Spell Card of the archetype, "Ancient City - Rainbow Ruins", which gains a new effect for every "Crystal Beast" Continuous Spell card you control.
One thing that becomes apparent almost immediately is the overall age of the archetype: Of the seven Main Deck "Crystal Beast" monster, only two manage to make the cut to be rated good, those two being "Crystal Beast Sapphire Pegasus for being an excellent playstarter and "Crystal Beast Ruby Carbuncle" which has the ability of filling your entire field with monsters with relative ease. "Crystal Beast Amber Mammoth" draw attacks to itself, which is almost irrelevant without any protection on its own; "Crystal Beast Amethyst Cat" can be become a laughably weak direct attacker; "Crystal Beast Topaz Tiger" can reach 2000 ATK via its effect and has nothing else going for it; and "Crystal Beast Emerald Tortoise" can switch your own monsters into defense after attacking, which is supposed to protect you from retaliation damage due to your opponents attack, but is ultimately useless. Lastly, "Crystal Beast Cobalt Eagle" isn't exactly the cream of the crop either, but can help recycle "Sapphire Pegasus".
The prior paragraph deals some harsh critisism to the monster line-up. However, the monsters play a secondary role in "Crystal Beasts"; the real power comes from the Spell & Trap support. "Crystal Bond" is an absolutely insane +1 in card economy for "Crystal Beasts", as it searches for a "Crystal Beast" monster and puts another one into the backrow. Combine this with "Crystal Beacon" and you can summon four monsters with two cards: Play "Crystal Bond", searching for "Sapphire Pegasus" (as the hand card) and any other "Crystal Beast" (excluding "Ruby Carbuncle) as backrow, play "Sapphire Pegasus, searching for another non-"Ruby Carbuncle" card for the backrow, play "Crystal Beacon" summoning "Ruby Carbuncle" and summon the monsters in the backrow via "Ruby Carbuncle's" effect. This is only one of the applications for these two cards and there is more to come. "Crystal Abundance" is a variant of "Soul Charge", except without the drawback and with a neat in-build field nuke. "Crystal Blessing", "Crystal Promise" and "Rare Value" are all situational cards, but can be considered for the deck if necessary. The aforementioned "Ancient City - Rainbow Ruins" has a plethora of effects, which bring negation, card draw and monster summoning in one neat package. Lastly, "Rainbow Bridge" brings even more consistency by making almost every Spell/Trap card in the archetype searchable, and should always be played at maximum.
However, all of these brilliant cards do nothing if they aren't supported by a winning strategy. Unfortunately, all "Crystal Beasts" lack in the stat department and, as mentioned before, their effects will not make the opponent cower in fear. For this reason, the "Crystal Beasts" are supported by yet another small groud of monsters called "Ultimate Crystal". This group consists of four monsters: "Rainbow Dragon", "Rainbow Dark Dragon", "Rainbow Overdragon" and "Rainbow Dragon Overdrive". "Rainbow Dragon" is the original boss monster of "Crystal Beasts", sports a massive 4000 ATK, can boost itself even further and gives the player the option to reset the board. "Rainbow Dark Dragon" is, as the name suggests, the dark version of the original "Rainbow Dragon" and trades the overall useful effects for an effect that effectively makes you go all-in while only receiving ATK boosts in return. It relies heavily on the Field Spell "Advanced Dark to be summonable, as there are no Dark attribute "Crystal Beasts" released yet. "Rainbow Overdragon" can be summoned via "Ultimate Crystal Magic", which unlocks its effect to reset the field completely, a common trend with the most powerful cards of the archetype and thus not at all unique to it (read: not worth jumping all these hoops for). It is much easier to summon it by its own effect by simply tributing an "Ultimate Crystal" monster, after wich it can reach 7000 ATK by banishing "Crystal Beast Rainbow Dragon". "Rainbow Dragon Overdrive" is the second "Ultimate Crystal" Extra Deck monster, and comes with its own Summoning condition, which requires one more material than "Overdragon", but is overall easier to achieve than summoning "Overdragon" with "Ultimate Crystal Magic". Summoning Overdrive by its own procedure also powers it up with 7000 ATK points if 7 different "Crystal beasts were banished. Furthermore, it can tribute itself, reset the field and summon back a horde of Crystal Beast monsters, making for a powerful boardbreaker and OTK enabler.
The "Advanced Crystal Beast" line up features upgraded counter parts of the original 7 "Crystal Beast", with more powerful version of their effects, however, they all rely on "Advanced Dark" to stay on the field, as they immediately send themselves from the Monster Zones to the GY while "Advanced Dark" is not on the field. On one hand, "Advanced Dark" is highly searchable in the deck not just by staples like "Terraforming", "Set Rotation" and "Metaverse", but also by the in-archetype cards "Advanced Crystal Beast Cobalt Eagle" and "Bridge of Salvation", and "Advanced Crystal Beast Amber Mammoth" can protect it from destruction. On the other hand, "Advanced Dark" itself boast no noteworthy effects that makes it worth playing on its own and forms a lynchpin for the deck in that its removal will also send any ACB monsters to the graveyard immediately, which a savvy opponent can exploit with Spell Destruction Quick Effects to interrupt combos on the player turn. "Advanced Dark" also turn any "Crystal Beasts" into DARK monsters, which does enable the summon of "Rainbow Dark Dragon", but interferes with the summon of Extra Deck monsters like "Lightning Chidori".
Furthermore, ACBs only support other ACBs with their effects, which limits their application. The reasons to play ACBs in a dedicated Crystal beast deck are still manifold; First and foremost, they still count as "Crystal Beast" monsters for any of their support cards, notably including the original "Sapphire Pegasus" and "Ruby Carbuncle" as well as, and most importantly, different names for the summon of the "Ultimate Crystal" monsters, thus increasing the different names to a total of 15. This means the player can run 7 different "Crystal Beasts" with just both versions of "Sapphire Pegasus", "Ruby Carbuncle" and "Cobalt Eagle", as well as "Crystal Beast Rainbow Dragon", slimming down the number of suboptimal "Crystal Beasts" severely. Additionally, even if they send themselves to the GY from the Main Monster Zone, they can still be placed in the S/T zone directly from the deck and then summoned from there by "Advanced Ruby Carbuncle". Even if they go immediately to the GY, they still count as "Crystal Beast" names there for the purpose of summoning "Ultimate Crystal" monsters. "advanced Dark will make all Crystal Beasts on the field have the sam Attribute, meaning they can be used to Link Summon "Curious, the Lightsworn Dominion", who can send "Bridge of Salvation" from the deck to the graveyard, allowing the search of one "Crystal Beast" Monster, as well as one field spell.
"Dragon Ravine" can be searched by "Bridge of Salvation" and can send "Crystal Beast Rainbow Dragon" from the deck to the graveyard, to be used for the summon of any of the "Ultimate Crystal" Monsters. "Vaylantz Vorld - Koenig Wissen" and Vaylantz Vorld - Shinrabansho also work well witht he play staly of the deck, with "Shinrabansho" being able to special summon "Crystal Beast" Monsters from the Spell/Trap Zone while "Koenig Wissen" is active, thus triggering the effects of Carbuncle and Pegasus.
Being capable of swarming the field with whatever monsters are available is considered a good thing. Any "Crystal Beast" monster that would have been ineffective without further plays can now be used for Link Summons. The aforementioned combo of "Crystal Bond" and "Crystal Beacon" or "Advanced Ruby Carbuncle" allows for the summoning of most viable Link-4 monsters, like "Saryuja Skull Dread" or "Borrelsword Dragon"; the first one getting even better, since choosing four different monsters with the combo is incredibly easy and triggers all of "Saryuja Skull Dread's" effects.
"Crystal Beasts" also make for excellent Xyz material, as almost all members are either Level 4 or 3, giving access to the Ranks 4 and 3 toolboxes. "Sapphire Pegasus" and "Cobalt Eagle" being level 4 WIND monsters also enables access to Xyz Monsters such as "Lightning Chidori", "Pegasus", "Mammoth" and "Tiger" also being level 4 beast type monsters also open up another set of specific Rank 4 monsters. If running "Advanced Dark", this can allow Xyz plays requiring DARK monsters, such as "Raider's Knight" (which can then Summon "Arc Rebellion Xyz Dragon" as a finisher).
Primarily consisting of Beast and Winged-Beast-type monsters also makes them lend themselves to being integrated with the "Tri-Brigade" archetype, which similarly focus on consistency, swarming and cycling through main deck monsters to fill the GY to summon their boss monster "Tri-Brigade Shuraig the Ominous Omen" which can search a Beast, Beast-Warrior or Winged Beast type monster, adding to the deck's consistency.
"Nemeses" monsters Special Summon themselves by returning banished monsters to the deck, which offers a great way to recycle "Crystal Beast Rainbow Dragon" while offering extra bodies to perform Extra Deck summons with. "Nemeses Corridor" in particular is another Level 4 WIND attribute monster.
"Noble Knight's Shield-Bearer" is able to search either version of "Sapphire Pegasus" and is itself searchable by "Reinforcement of the Army and "Heritage of the Chalice". It can also search "Dynatherium as an extra level 4 WIND monster, or "Hop Ear Squadron", which can synchro summon "Vulcan the Divine" during the opponents turn as a disruptive play. "Heritage of the Chalice" can also search "Infernoble Arms - Hauteclere" which can quickly OTK the opponent if equipped to any of the deck's boss monsters or "Rainbow Neos".
Since the interactions with Monster Cards as Continuous Spells are not always obvious to recognize, here are some helpful tips regarding the issue:
- "Crystal Beast" support cards such as "Crystal Beacon" reference monsters in the Spell & Trap Zone. Because these effects do not specify that the "Crystal Beasts" must be in the said Zones as Continuous Spell Cards, you can use them even if they're being equipped by effects such as that of "Destiny HERO - Plasma".
- If a card such as "Macro Cosmos" is preventing cards from reaching the Graveyard, this will NOT prevent "Crystal Beasts" from using their effects to place themselves in the Spell & Trap Zone (as they would never hit the Graveyard in the first place).
- While "Dimensional Fissure" is active, "Crystal Beasts" in the Spell & Trap Zones that are removed from the field by cards like "Rare Value" or "Mystical Space Typhoon" will be sent to the Graveyard, not banished.
- The management of maintaining vacant Zones in the Spell/Trap Card Zones can be irksome sometimes for this kind of Deck due to the balance between "Crystal Beasts" in said Zone for certain support cards as well as regular Spell/Traps to help this Deck further, a possible annoyance that can be hustled via cards like "Xing Zhen Hu", "Xing Zhen Hu Replica" and "Seismic Shockwave".
- Cards like "Banisher of the Light", "Dimensional Fissure", "Masked HERO Dark Law" and "Macro Cosmos can cripple this Deck since you can't summon "Rainbow Dragon" with banished Crystal Beasts, albeit they're easily counterable with "Imperial Iron Wall" and "Chaos Hunter".