The Battle City tournament, featured a battle royal game of Duel Monsters, in the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga.

The battle royal was to determine the match-ups for the semifinals, between Dark Yugi, Katsuya Jonouchi, Seto Kaiba and Dark Marik. The first two players to lose were to Duel in the first semifinal and the other two in the second.



The Duel took place in the Duel Tower. Each semifinalist got into a pod, which would be elevated, as they lost Life Points, bringing losers to the top of the tower. The first two to the top would face each other in the first semifinal.[1]

Each player contemplated how they would like to be matched up for the next round.[2]

  • To defeat "The Sun Dragon Ra", Kaiba figured he would need two God cards, so he aimed to face Dark Yugi next, to acquire his God card, "Slifer the Sky Dragon".[2]
  • Dark Marik did not mind who his next opponent would be, due to his confidence that nobody could defeat "Ra", but if he had to choose, would select Dark Yugi to satisfy his craving to get rid of him.[2]
  • Jonouchi had hoped to Duel Dark Yugi, as a testament to his development as a Duelist, but was willing to put that aside, while he needed to defeat Dark Marik to save Mai Kujaku.[2]
  • Dark Yugi had motive to Duel all three; Dark Marik, his true enemy, Jonouchi, whom he had promised to Duel and Kaiba, with whom he was to have a fated Duel.[2] Ultimately, he decided he should face Jonouchi.[3]

Order determining

Battle royal card exclusions

Each participant chooses a card to exclude.

To determine the order of play for the battle, each participant removed one Monster Card from their Deck. They were to take turns in order of ATK of the selected monsters, starting with the highest. Kaiba was eager to take the advantage of going first and choose a high-ATK card, he won through the ante rule. Jonouchi was intent on saving his strongest cards for the Duel and choose a weak monster.[2]

  1. Kaiba: "Masked Beast of Guardius", 3300 ATK[2]
  2. Dark Marik: "Rekunga", 1700 ATK[2]
  3. Dark Yugi: "Feral Imp", 1300 ATK[2]
  4. Jonouchi: "Swordsman of Landstar", 500 ATK[2]


Turn 1: Kaiba

Kaiba Set[2] "Attack Guidance Armor"[3] and Summoned "Vorse Raider".[2]

Turn 2: Dark Marik

Dark Marik Summoned "Newdoria" in Defense Mode.[2]

Turn 3: Dark Yugi

Dark Yugi Set[2] "Remove Trap"[3] and Summoned "Big Shield Guardna" in Defense Mode.[2]

Turn 4: Jonouchi

Jonouchi did not get any Monster Cards in his opening hand, so he just Set[2] "Shield and Sword"[4] and ended.[2]

Turn 5: Kaiba

Big Shield Guardna defends Jonouchi

"Big Shield Guardna" defends Jonouchi.

Kaiba said he would teach Jonouchi the food chain of the fight and got "Vorse Raider" to attack him directly.[2] Dark Yugi hoped to preserve his and Jonouchi's Life Points and take out Kaiba and Dark Marik, so he got "Big Shield Guardna" to block the attack. Jonouchi was thankful of Dark Yugi's devotion to their promise, but still thought about how he needed to face Dark Marik.[3]

Kaiba mocked Jonouchi for needing Dark Yugi's help and commented on his low chances of winning in the semifinals. He suggested that Dark Yugi's determination to Duel Jonouchi was so he could have an easy opponent and guaranteed spot in the finals. Dark Yugi warned Kaiba to stop talking and argued that Jonouchi was a true Duelist who had won his way to this point in the tournament. Jonouchi requested that Dark Yugi stop and said he would see him in the next round. Dark Marik interrupted and suggested that they continue the battle.[3]

Turn 6: Dark Marik

Dark Marik decided that he wanted to face Dark Yugi and most get rid of the other two. He Set "Mirror Force" and Summoned "Lord Poison".[3]

"Newdoria" attacked "Vorse Raider", but having lower ATK, it was destroyed. This activated the effect of "Newdoria", which Dark Marik used to destroy "Vorse Raider". Since his monster was destroyed in battle, Dark Marik was to take 700 damage, but he activated "Spell of Pain" to make Jonouchi take the damage instead (Jonouchi: 4000 → 3300 Life Points).[3]

Dark Marik planned on protecting "Lord Poison" with "Mirror Force" and sacrificing it next turn.[3]

Turn 7: Dark Yugi

Archfiend of Gilfer's attack redirected

The attack from "Archfiend of Gilfer", being redirected

Dark Yugi Sacrificed "Big Shield Guardna" to Summon "Archfiend of Gilfer", which he used to attack Kaiba directly. Kaiba activated "Attack Guidance Armor", equipping it to "Lord Poison", making it become the target of the attack, but Dark Marik used "Mirror Force" to reflect the attack back to Dark Yugi, who used "Remove Trap" to cancel the effect of "Mirror Force". "Lord Poison" became the final target of the attack and was destroyed (Dark Marik: 4000 → 3300 Life Points).[3]

Turn 8: Jonouchi

Jonouchi drew "Gearfried the Iron Knight" and Summoned it. Since Dark Marik and Kaiba had their fields emptied in Dark Yugi's turn, Jonouchi had an open shot at either of them. With 14 hours left to save Mai, he decided he wished to face Marik, so he elected to attack Kaiba directly (Kaiba: 4000 → 2200 Life Points).[4]

Turn 9: Kaiba

Kaiba Set "Ring of Destruction" and "Shrink" and Summoned "Blade Knight", which he used to attack Dark Marik directly (Dark Marik: 3300 → 1700 Life Points).[4]

Turn 10: Dark Marik

Dark Marik Summoned "Dark Jeroid" and contemplated on which monster to target with its ATK-reducing effect. Kaiba mentally urged Dark Marik to attack him, so that he could use "Ring of Destruction" to take away a large portion of his Life Points. Cautious of Kaiba's Trap Cards, Dark Marik targeted "Gearfried" ("Gearfried": 1800 → 1000 ATK). He then attacked "Gearfried" with "Dark Jeroid", but Jonouchi activated "Shield and Sword", switching each monsters' ATK with their respective DEF ("Gearfried": 1000 → 1600 ATK, 1600 → 1000 DEF, "Dark Jeroid": 1200 → 1500 ATK, 1500 → 1200 DEF). This would have allowed "Gearfried" to destroy "Dark Jeroid", but Kaiba activated "Shrink" to halve its ATK ("Gearfried": 1600 → 800 ATK), causing "Dark Jeroid" to win the battle (Jonouchi: 3300 → 2600 Life Points).[4]

Turn 11: Dark Yugi

What is a true Duelist?

Jonouchi interrupts Dark Yugi.

Dark Yugi examined the situations of his opponents; Kaiba had a monster and a face-down card, Dark Marik had a monster and no face-down cards and Jonouchi had no monsters or face-down cards. Having the monster with the highest ATK, he thought about who to attack. He Set a card and Summoned "Kuriboh" in Defense Mode.[5]

Dark Yugi was about to attack a monster, but was stopped by Jonouchi, who questioned him about what a real Duelist is. In conclusion, he said that Dark Yugi should not be protecting him for their promise to Duel each other. Being an opponent in the worst situation, he saw himself as the best viable target for Dark Yugi's attack, an opportunity Dark Yugi should take, as a real Duelist. He assured him it would not affect their friendship and vowed that they would meet in the finals, if they did not face each other in the semifinals. Dark Yugi understood and got "Archfiend of Gilfer" to attack Jonouchi (Jonouchi: 2600 → 400 Life Points).[5]

As Jonouchi's pod moved past Dark Marik, he mentally warned Dark Marik to brace himself.[5]

Turn 12: Jonouchi

While Jonouchi drew, he promised Mai that he would save her.[5]

Graverobber Spell of Pain

Jonouchi's "Graverobber" game changer

Jonouchi Set "Graverobber" and Summoned "Legendary Fisherman". Dark Yugi thought that Dark Marik might be the wisest attack target, but Jonouchi chose to attack Kaiba's "Blade Knight". Kaiba responded with "Ring of Destruction", which would destroy "Legendary Fisherman" and take out Jonouchi's remaining Life Points. However Jonouchi activated "Graverobber" and took Dark Marik's "Spell of Pain", allowing him to redirect the damage to Dark Marik (Dark Marik: 1700 → 0 Life Points).[5]

With his Life Points at 0, Dark Marik's pod ascended to the top of the tower, ruling him as a participant in the first semifinal. Dark Marik was not disappointed, but decided he would send Jonouchi to the darkness.[5]

Jonouchi had no cards left on his portion of the field, but that was what he had planned for and ended his turn.[5]

Turn 13: Kaiba

"Blade Knight" attacked Jonouchi directly (Jonouchi: 400 → 0 Life Points), sending Jonouchi to the top of the tower, as the second participant in the first semifinal. With Dark Yugi and Kaiba undefeated, they were ruled as the participants in the second semifinal.[5]

Cards used

The following cards appeared in this Duel. Each player excluded one card from their Deck to determine the order of play.

Seto Kaiba
Dark Marik
Dark Yugi
Katsuya Jonouchi


  1. Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 179: "The Dawn of Battle!"
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 180: "Cross Purposes!"
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 181: "The Deadly Rebound!"
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 182: "Eyes on the Target!"
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist Duel 183: "A True Duelist"
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