"Six Samurai", known as "Six Warmen" (
The archetype also receives implicit support from the "Shien" archetype as well as various monsters, Spells and Traps from the main "Six Samurai" series.
The overall theme of "Six Samurai" is a futuristic feudal Japan setting, combined with supernatural elements.
Another common theme is there are different monsters belonging to a different Attribute for each reincarnation of "Six Samurai": "The Six Samurai", "Legendary Six Samurai" and the recent "Secret Six Samurai".
The crest of "Secret Six Samurai" features kunai-like details, a reference to the kagemusha.
The original Six Samurai monsters debuted in Strike of Neos and depended on having another "Six Samurai" on the field to activate their effects. They also all shared the effect of "If this card would be destroyed you can destroy another "Six Samurai" monster you control instead".
Storm of Ragnarok introduced the "Legendary Six Samurai" series, providing further support for the original Six, as well as support for summoning their own Synchro Monster, "Legendary Six Samurai - Shi En".
Deck Build Pack: Spirit Warriors introduced the new "Secret Six Samurai" sub-archetype, as well as the first "Six Samurai" Fusion Monster, "Secret Six Samurai - Rihan". These "Six Samurai" have various effects focused on banished "Six Samurai" monsters, as well as banishing themselves to protect "Six Samurai" monsters on the field.
LINK VRAINS Pack 2 released a Link Monster for "Six Samurai", which was imported to the TCG in Chaos Impact Special Edition; "Battle Shogun of the Six Samurai", a Link-2 monster that searches out any card that can hold Bushido Counters, including the powerful "Gateway of the Six".
|Attribute||The Six Samurai||Legendary version||Legendarys' Final version||Secret Six Samurai|
|DARK||Irou||Shi En||Great Shogun Shien||Doji|
|FIRE||Kamon||Mizuho||Hand of the Six Samurai||Genba|
|WIND||Nisashi||Kageki||Chamberlain of the Six Samurai||Fuma|
|WATER||Yaichi||Shinai||Spirit of the Six Samurai||Hatsume|
|EARTH||Yariza||Kizan||Grandmaster of the Six Samurai||Kizaru|
|LIGHT||Zanji||Enishi||Enishi, Shien's Chancellor||Rihan|
"Six Samurai" were radically altered by the release of Storm of Ragnarok. With the release of the "Legendary Six Samurai", their strategy has shifted very rapidly from one of a normal Aggro Deck to a low monster search based Aggro Deck.
The addition of "Legendary Six Samurai - Shi En" is one of the major factors that has shaped the change, with his ability to negate a Spell or Trap card once per turn. "Legendary Shi En" is easy and quick to Summon, using "Legendary Six Samurai - Kageki" and "Kagemusha of the Six Samurai" (searchable by "Shien's Smoke Signal", "Reinforcement of the Army", and "Gateway of the Six") or by using "Elder of the Six Samurai" and "Asceticism of the Six Samurai" to Special Summon "Kagemusha of the Six Samurai", with a high DEF to reliably stay in play, he is now the key card of "Six Samurai" Decks.
In addition to "Shi En", "Legendary Six Samurai - Kizan" has also had a major effect on the play style of the Six Samurai. The ease with which he can be Special Summoned and searched has greatly increased the speed of the Deck and allowed it to use fewer monsters. He can either be Normal or Special Summoned, and, in the presence of two or more other "Six Samurai" monsters, gains 300 ATK/DEF bringing him to 2100 ATK.
Since the release of Storm of Ragnarok, "Six Samurai" have run far fewer monsters than they used to. The reason for this is their access to large numbers of search cards. They may use "Shien's Smoke Signal" and "Reinforcement of the Army" to boost their effective monster count.
The "Six Samurai" have access to amazing draw power in the form of "Six Samurai United". It is effectively a +1 when used, and the Bushido Counters it generates can be used for "Gateway of the Six". Bushido Counters are collected by Summoning "Six Samurai" monsters. In addition to "Six Samurai United", a popular option is to run "Upstart Goblin" to boost the Deck's consistency, using the argument that if they manage to get their field properly set up, the extra Life Points will not matter anyway.
With the release of their Link Monster, "Battle Shogun of the Six Samurai", "Six Samurai" are now able to build around usually having Gateway of the Six. This means that "Six Samurai" Decks are now focusing more on infinite loops, especially with both "Legendary Six Samurai - Mizuho" and "Legendary Six Samurai - Shinai". This lets "Six Samurai" gain infinite counters, allowing them to keep adding to hand "Six Samurai" monsters or summoning back "Shien" Tuners such as "Shien's Squire". By using these Tuners to summon "PSY-Framelord Omega", "Six Samurai" are able to infinitely loop cards such as "Gagaga Cowboy", even with the more accessible "Daigusto Emeral" Limited in the TCG.
"Gateway of the Six" defined "Six Samurai" as a Deck capable of creating infinite advantage loops with "Legendary Six Samurai - Mizuho" and "Legendary Six Samurai - Shinai". With the release of "Battle Shogun of the Six Samurai", access to these loops got consistent enough that two more were discovered that could be utilized to give the Deck infinite advantage, destruction, and recursion. This means that modern "Six Samurai" are capable of easily infinite looping powerful cards like "Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier" to banish an opponent's entire hand or even FTKing with cards like "Gagaga Cowboy".
Red/Blue Infinite Advantage Loop
- The main infinite loop for Six Samurai is the "Red/Blue Loop". This requires either 2 of either Legendary Six Samurai - Mizuho or Legendary Six Samurai - Shinai, 1 of the other, along with "Gateway of the Six" with 4+ counters on it.
- Mizuho activates her effect to destroy herself, Tributing Shinai for the cost. In the GY, Shinai's effect activates to add back "Mizuho" to the hand. "Gateway" then removes 4 counters to add "Shinai". As you control a "Mizuho"/"Shinai", you can Special Summon them both back, replacing the 4 counters you removed from "Gateway" to form a stable infinite loop. As long as another card on the field is also generating counters, this loop can be utilized to keep using the different effects of "Gateway".
Ama-Shogun Infinite Destruction Loop
- The purpose of this loop is finding the easiest way possible to infinitely destroy either your opponent's cards or your own. This is mostly for the purpose of getting your own cards in GY to use later. In the first repetition, you'll likely Tribute your second "Mizuho".
- (Assuming the Red/Blue Loop has already been utilized): Tribute another "Six Samurai" monster (Always leave a "Shinai" on field while looping), target the desired card and destroy it. Add back cards used from loop with "Gateway". Link Summon "Battle Shogun". Special Summon back "Mizuho" when you wish to destroy another card, Tribute your "Battle Shogun" in these later repetitions.
RBG Infinite Recursion Loop
- In the OCG where "Daigusto Emeral" is Unlimited, this loop is unnecessary. Two copies of "Emeral" should be used instead to keep returning the other from GY to the Extra Deck. This is a continuation of the Red/Blue loop to keep returning cards from GY using either the GY effect of "PSY-Framelord Omega". One key component of this loop is getting a "Shien" Tuner like "Shien's Squire" in play with cards like "Dojo", "Crystron Halqifibrax" or "Curious, the Lightsworn Dominion".
- (Assuming the Red/Blue Loop has already been utilized): Special Summon "PSY-Framelord Omega" with "Kizan", "Mizuho", and "Squire". Destroy "Omega" with the Ama-Shogun Loop above. Activate "Omega's" effect to shuffle into the Deck both itself and one other card in the GY.
Usually, a well-played "Six Samurai" Deck poses a big threat to Decks that rely on a few powerful Spell and/or Trap cards to function. It can lock down, or at least greatly stall, them in the early game and keep its' own field untouchable. Decks like "Elemental HERO" can be completely locked down by "Naturia Beast" and "Legendary Six Samurai - Shi En" as key spells like "E - Emergency Call" and "Miracle Fusion" become unusable. The same can be said about "Dark World" decks, which rely on many different discarding Spells.
The "Six Samurai", much like "Blackwings", require field presence to properly swarm. Any card that prevents them from doing so for a turn slows them down greatly. Past this, "Legendary Six Samurai - Shi En" and "Musakani Magatama" largely solve this problem. Because of their varied attributes, "Gozen Match" can create problems for "The Six Samurai". This problem can be solved by negating or destroying the card with "Legendary Six Samurai - Shi En" or "Mystical Space Typhoon". Cards that prevent Special Summoning, such as "Archlord Kristya" and "Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo" also greatly weaken this Deck. This can be solved by adding "Breakthrough Skill" and/or "Fiendish Chain" to negate their effects.
Monsters, that can, without destroying, remove monsters from the field are a big threat to Six Samurai strategy, since "Naturia" Synchro Monsters are usually kept at one of each in the Extra Deck. "Chaos" monsters, like "Dark End Dragon" etc., can easily overpower this Deck.
"Nibiru, the Primal Being" is possibly the worst enemy of Six Samurai decks, as the long sequences of Special Summoning leaves the samurai wide open and the predictability of the infinite loop allows an opponent to summon Nibiru at an exact moment to disrupt everything with little chance of recovery.
- Each Six Samurai has a different attribute, and those with polar attributes have opposite effects. Yaichi's opposite is Kamon, Nisashi's is Yariza, and Irou's is Zanji.
- Yaichi destroys face-down Spell/Trap cards, and Kamon destroys face-up Spell/Trap cards.
- Nisashi can attack twice and potentially destroy multiple monsters, while Yariza bypasses monsters entirely to attack directly.
- Irou's effect can take down monsters before they become a threat, and Zanji's effect can take out an already active threat.
- The Legendary Six Samurai have similar interactions between opposing attributes:
- "Shi En" takes care of Spells and Traps, while "Enishi" gets rid of monsters once per turn. Both effects can be activated during either player's turn.
- "Kizan" can summon itself if you have a different "Six Samurai" monster, while "Kageki" summons another "Six Samurai" when Normal Summoned.
- "Mizuho" requires "Six Samurai" to be tributed to activate its effect that destroys cards. On the other hand, "Shinai" need to be tributed to get a "Six Samurai" from the Graveyard (also, you can Special Summon one while controlling the other).
- Most card artworks featuring the Six Samurai and their supporting cards contain a heraldic crest/coat of arms (紋章 - monshō or 家紋 - kamon) representing the Six Samurai. The crest is composed of a bolded outer-circle and an inner-circle. The inner-circle contains six smaller dotted circles which are connected to each other (in a specific path) and 6 other irregular shapes that are likely to represent the initial Six Samurai. To date, the only Six Samurai related cards that do not feature the Six Samurai crest are "Great Shogun Shien", "Tenkabito Shien", "Shien's Footsoldier", "Shien's Daredevil", and "Shien's Castle of Mist". However, it appears that if you look at the art in some of the Shien cards that Shien and Elder have an alternate symbol between them, as evident in "Tenkabito Shien", "Shien's Advisor", "Elder of the Six Samurai", and even "Shien's Smoke Signal".