Special Summoning condition

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Special Summoning conditions refer to conditions Monster Cards have in their card text that restrict the circumstances under which they can be Special Summoned.

General conditions[edit]

Cannot be Special Summoned[edit]

The condition "Cannot be Special Summoned" prevents the monster being Special Summoned by any means.

Monsters with this condition can still be Special Summoned by effects that ignore their Summoning conditions, such as "Spell Gear".

Original First erratum
This card cannot be Special Summoned. Cannot be Special Summoned.

Cannot be Special Summoned from...[edit]

The condition "Cannot be Special Summoned from..." prevents the monster being Special Summoned from particular locations. They can be Special Summoned from other locations as normal.

The only locations that monsters have been specifically prevented from being Summoned from by their own Special Summoning conditions are the Graveyard and Main Deck, although many monsters have conditions that functionally result in them being unable to be Special Summoned from other locations.

Monsters with such a condition can still be Special Summoned from these locations by effects that ignore their Summoning conditions, such as "Time Maiden".

Original First erratum
This card cannot be Special Summoned from... Neither player can Special Summon this card from...
Second erratum Third erratum
This card cannot be Special Summoned from... Cannot be Special Summoned from...

Cannot be Special Summoned from... unless...[edit]

The condition "Cannot be Special Summoned from... unless..." prevents the monster being Special Summoned from particular locations unless the Summoning player pays an additional cost when they would Summon it. They can be Special Summoned from other locations as normal.

The only monster to have this condition is "Tyrant Dragon".

Cannot be Special Summoned, except by...[edit]

The condition "Cannot be Special Summoned, except by..." prevents the monster being Special Summoned, except by a particular method.

Examples include only being able to Special Summoned by the monster's own effect, a particular card, a particular group of cards, or by Pendulum Summon. Different types of restriction are often worded differently.

Monsters with such a condition can still be Special Summoned by effects that ignore their Summoning conditions.

Cannot be Special Summoned except from...[edit]

The condition "Cannot be Special Summoned except from..." prevents the monster being Special Summoned, except from a particular location.

The only monster to have this condition is "Felgrand Dragon", although the Ritual Monster "Nekroz of Sophia" has a similar condition.

Special Summon Monsters[edit]

All Special Summon Monsters have some specified method by which they can be Special Summoned. They normally cannot be Special Summoned by other methods from non-public knowledge locations (hand, Main Deck, face-down Extra Deck, or banished face-down); they normally can be Special Summoned from public knowledge locations (field, Graveyard, face-up Extra Deck, or banished face-up), as long as they were first Special Summoned properly (i.e. by the intended Summoning method).

While in a public knowledge location, Special Summon Monsters cannot be Special Summoned except by the proper method, unless they have previously been properly Special Summoned while remaining public knowledge. This restriction applies even to effects that ignore the Summoning conditions.

Must be Special Summoned...[edit]

The condition "Must be Special Summoned by..." means that the monster is a Special Summon Monster that cannot be Special Summoned except by the listed method. Monsters with this condition are commonly referred to as Nomi monsters.

Monsters with such a condition can still be Special Summoned by effects that ignore their Summoning conditions, from public knowledge locations (only if they were properly Special Summoned) or from non-public knowledge locations (even if not).

Extra Deck monsters and Ritual Monsters can also have this condition. While those monster card types normally can only be Special Summoned by the method for that monster card type, this condition overrides that, making the listed method the only way to properly Special Summon them.

Original First erratum
This card can only be Special Summoned... This card cannot be Special Summoned except...
Second erratum Third erratum
Must be Special Summoned... and cannot be Special Summoned by other ways. Must be Special Summoned...

Must first be Special Summoned by...[edit]

The condition "Must first be Special Summoned by..." means that the monster is a Special Summon Monster that cannot be Special Summoned from non-public knowledge locations except by the listed method. Monsters with this condition are known as Special Summon-only monsters, and are also commonly referred to as Semi-Nomi monsters.

Monsters with such a condition that have been properly Special Summoned can be Special Summoned from public knowledge locations by any effect, but otherwise cannot be Special Summoned from those locations (even by effects that ignore the Summoning conditions). They can be Special Summoned from non-public knowledge locations by effects that ignore the Summoning conditions, regardless of whether they have previously been Special Summoned properly.

Extra Deck monsters and Ritual Monsters can also have this condition. While those monster card types normally can only be Special Summoned by the method for that monster card type, this condition overrides that, making the listed method the only way to properly Special Summon them.

Original First erratum
This [monster/card] can only be Special Summoned... Must first be Special Summoned...

Must first be Special Summoned by... and cannot be Special Summoned by other ways except...[edit]

The condition "Must first be Special Summoned by... and cannot be Special Summoned by other ways except..." means that the monster is a Special Summon Monster that has one method to be properly Special Summoned and another method that can Special Summon it once it has been properly Special Summoned. The only monster with this condition is "Vennominaga the Deity of Poisonous Snakes".

Monsters with such a condition can only be Special Summoned from public knowledge locations by the proper method or the other listed method; they can only be Special Summoned by the other listed method if first Special Summoned by the proper method.

Monsters with such a condition can still be Special Summoned by effects that ignore their Summoning conditions, from public knowledge locations (only if they were properly Special Summoned) or from non-public knowledge locations (even if not).