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"Penguin" monsters' ATK and DEF are usually unremarkable, instead focusing on their effects. "Penguin" monsters' effects are primarily focused on returning opponent's cards to the hand. Many "Penguin" cards have effects that support returning cards on the field to the hand.
The "Penguin" archetype is a thematically loose series of cards, and only formed a central theme and playstyle long after its initial members' release. Because of this, several "Penguin" monsters don't have effects that properly support the central "Penguin" playstyle, and some are members of other archetypes and support these archetypes more than they do to "Penguin" (e.g. "Fluffal Penguin"). The "Penguin" monsters that can be considered the key members of the archetype are those that either specifically support the "Penguin" archetype, or support the archetype's central playstyle involving Flip effects and returning cards to the hand.
Though the archetype was thematically disparate for a long time after its release, "Penguin Brave" and the monsters featured in its art forms a sub-series of "Penguin" monsters with a related card lore and connected card art.
- Supports "Penguin" cards
- Has Flip/Bounce-related effect
The "Penguin" archetype focuses on returning cards on the field to the hand with cards, such as with the effects of "Penguin Soldier" and "Penguin Ninja". The central monster in the strategy is "Penguin Brave", who Special Summons a "Penguin" from Deck, and can flip it face-up as a Quick Effect, giving the player control over when to trigger the monsters' flip effects to disrupt the opponent.
"Penguin Squire" is the main way by which the deck summons "Penguin Brave". "Squire" is a Tuner that Special Summons itself from the hand when the player sets a monster, can flip a friendly set monster face-up, and can modulate its levels so that it can Synchro Summon "Penguin Brave" with the set monster. A second important monster is "Nopenguin", who is an extender that can revive itself in the GY, and has a continuous effect that banishes cards bounced by "Penguin" cards, greatly increasing the disruption power of "Penguin" cards.
"Royal Penguins Garden" is the main searcher for "Penguin" monsters, and combos especially well with "The Great Emperor Penguin", whose level in the hand can be reduced to 4 with the effect of "Royal Penguins Garden", allowing it to be Normal Summoned and use its effect to Tribute itself and Special Summon 2 "Penguin" monsters from Deck.
The archetype is quite weak at swarming and has an average resource acquisition and recovery rate, meaning that it is best played in a control style, backed up with powerful traps and staple cards.