The "Light Ignis" ( (ひかり) のイグニス, Hikari no Igunisu), alternatively named Lightning (ライトニング, Raitoningu), is a character and the central antagonist of the Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS anime. He is one of the six Ignis, as well as their former leader, where he is modeled after Jin Kolter as part of the Hanoi Project. Lightning is the mastermind behind the destruction of the Cyberse World after imprisoning Aqua, corrupted Windy, created the two Artificial Intelligences Bohman and Harlin, stole Jin's consciousness, and infected Miyu Sugisaki and Dr. Kogami with two different computer viruses. His ultimate goal is to unite all of the Ignis into one vessel and reign supreme over humans. Lightning is the fifth Ignis to be terminated.

Lightning's machinations establish him as one of the prime movers of the series after Dr. Kogami, having been the source of the Knights of Hanoi's war against the Ignis, SOL Technologies and Ai becoming an enemy of the human race.




Lightning's full body.

Lightning, like his fellow Ignis, is a small, digital humanoid being. Outside the physical form, his body is made of yellow prism-like data and he has darker yellow eyes. His physical form is a light lemon yellow with dandelion yellow diamond markings. He has an oval shaped head with two strands pointing in opposite directions. His eyes are neon green and more circular compared to Flame's eyes, giving him a more youthful look. Stature-wise, he is the fourth tallest Ignis, being shorter than Ai, Flame, and Earth.


According to Ai, Lightning is calm, cool, and collected and is a natural leader. However, Ai concedes he cannot understand what he is thinking. He's shown to be cold, calculating, manipulative, and deceptive, having reprogrammed Windy to help him overthrow humanity, believing the Ignis to be far superior to humans. He is also not above turning on his own comrades as he lured Ai into his trap and was willing to reprogram him to serve his own needs. He also has a twisted sense of Dr. Kogami's purpose in creating the Ignis, as rather than guide humanity, he and Windy want the Ignis to reign supreme while humans are put under their control.

Lightning also shows little to no remorse for his fellow Ignis. He was willing to overwrite Ai's programming, attempted to capture Flame with no explanation, imprisoned Aqua, and let the Knight of Hanoi attack Windy, only saving the latter after Ai called out to him. After Windy's loss to Soulburner, Lightning showed little concern regarding Windy's termination and didn't respond to Windy's plea to save him, showing complete apathy towards his own kind.

Lightning doesn't understand the bond between Ignis and their originators, believing the latter are nuisances that will corrupt the former, which is why he wants to place humans under his control. He also lacks the empathy and kindness to humans and Ignis that is evident in Flame, Ai and Aqua since he lacked human instinct and only thought rationally. It was why he initially had Harlin be Bohman's brother to support him emotionally until the latter evolved enough, which then made Lightning demote Harlin to Bohman's servant. Lightning is also very stubborn minded in his views on humans, calling Ai and Flame error codes for supporting humans. As stated by Flame, Lightning doesn't tolerate dissent against his opinions, as was seen when he imprisoned Ai, Playmaker, and Aqua when they went against him. He even admitted to tormenting Jin and was the source of his trauma, due to enjoying seeing his reactions. He also was willing to infect his creator, Kiyoshi Kogami with a virus that eventually lead to his death, showing how much he hated his creator.

Whilst dueling, Specter correctly insinuates that Lightning's arrogance is caused by a complex which he hasn't shared with anyone. He was so arrogant that he kept underestimating Playmaker when he thought Cal Kolter would win against the former, similar to Windy's case with Soulburner. Varis confirmed that Lighting's arrogance and actions indeed spur from an inferiority complex as Spectre theorized, born after witnessing simulations that predicted him as the only member of the Ignis that would be unable to develop a bond with humans and whose actions would cause mutual destruction for both races. Jealous that he would be the only outcast of the Ignis, he caused ruin and misery to his fellow comrades only so they all could be reborn as one where Lightning no longer is inferior. As noted by Ai, Lightning's schemes were completely selfish, and ironically produced the exact result of him being the sole Ignis responsible for harming both Ignis and Humans that the simulations suggested.

Lightning's supremacist views run very deep, as seen when he, normally calm, collected and logical, can become extremely angry when a human proves to be more than a match to him, as seen with Shepherd and Spectre. He also became shocked when he learned that Cal anticipated Lightning's blackmail plan, as he was in utter disbelief that a human could predict him. Ai also called out Lightning for claiming that his own defects and inferiorities apply to all of the Ignis as a whole when it was actually only him who doubted humanity whereas the rest of the Ignis just wanted a peaceful life.

Similar to Specter, Lightning is also cowardly, as seen in his duel with Varis, as he takes Jin, and Specter's as a hostage and threatens to destroy him should Lightning lose, mirroring what Specter did with Akira against Playmaker. He was willing to do anything to win a duel, the best example of this is when he converted Jin's consciousness data to extra LP to avoid losing during his duel with Varis.

His actions truly distinguish him as the most malevolent and malicious of the Ignis. However, in spite of all this, according to Bohman, for all his flaws he was the most human of the Ignis because of his unflinching will to survive and defy what the simulations destined him to become through any means necessary. His actions also make him the Ignis with the most free will.


As a Light Ignis, Lightning is an AI with free will and has a degree of control over the Cyberse World and can create Cyberse monsters. Lightning is associated with the LIGHT Attribute. Lightning is also the smartest among the Ignis, as well as the fastest.[1] This is in contrast to the simulations which state that Lightning is not intelligent nor elite as he is inferior to all the Ignis.

Lightning is also capable of creating advanced AI with free will. He created Bit, Boot, Harlin, and Bohman. He also has the power to imprint false memories and to infect humans with computer viruses. Lightning is also capable of creating a duplicate version of the network world, Mirror LINK VRAINS, to hide in.




Lightning in his territory after the creation of Cyberse World.

Lightning was modeled after Jin Kolter;[2] he was created with the other Ignis by Dr. Kogami in the Hanoi Project to be the saviors of humanity. During the Lost Incident, Lightning learned how to frighten people. In fact, he created simulations for Jin showing how he'd be saved, then twisted them in order to scare him. The result made Jin crushed, which caused his soul to be broken.[3] Like his fellow Ignis, Lightning evolved and they created the Cyberse World, as well as the Cyberse monsters. Their progress worried Dr. Kogami, who predicted the AI and humanity would become enemies, who created Ignis to help humanity instead.[4]Despite this, Lightning and the other Ignis continued developing the Cyberse World. Lightning's sector of Cyberse was a place filled with plains and rocky landscapes with a stone pillar in the distance. In Ai's words, the Ignis would never try harm humanity, and would rather live in their own world.[5] Though referred to as living beings, Lightning and the other Ignis, except Ai, lacked human instinct, and their decisions were based on their rational thinking.[6]

However, the simulations showed that, in a group, the Ignis would destroy the world, but separately, they'd improve humanity through coexistence. The exception to this was Lightning, who was predicted to demolish the others' progress and start a war between the Ignis and humanity.[7] When Cyberse World was constructed, Lightning ran simulations at the same time Dr. Kogami ran his on the Ignis' future, and warned SOL Technologies of the threat. Since Lightning believed Dr. Kogami would soon learn that Lightning would be the source of the Ignis turning onto humanity, he went and corrupted him with a virus, causing SOL Technologies to imprison him and making him believe they punished him.[3]

Unnamed yellow lifeform

Lightning captured

Varis launched an attack to Cyberse World with three of his "Cracking Dragons". The entities of Cyberse, including Lightning, were sealed off and could not retaliate, except for Ai. Varis and the "Cracking Dragon" chased Ai, who escaped Cyberse and severed the connection with that place. Others realized he wanted to hide Cyberse at the price of being unable to return. Just as Ai succeeded and gloated, Varis' "Cracking Dragon" ate him, though his eye was lost in the network. Varis had his team search for Ai's remains, for only he knew the location of Cyberse.[8] The attack swayed Lightning's mind, as he saw humanity as their enemy, an entity the Ignis would surpass. He believed humans had reached their peak of evolution, while the Ignis grew faster and better.[2]

In Ai's absence, Lightning spoke with the other Ignis on how their technology surpassed humanity. They wondered if they should share this technology with humans, and co-exist with them. Since they learned Varis and Dr. Kogami tried to destroy them, the Ignis noted that humans had the potential to be their enemies.[9] Lightning was designing the "Judgment Arrows" card, but Aqua noticed his activities. Lightning claimed the card would protect Cyberse World from humans, but Aqua found out he was lying. To prevent her from interfering, Lightning sealed Aqua in a cage. Aqua questioned his motives, while Lightning admitted he would destroy Cyberse World to further his actions.[10] Lightning was the one that had Cyberse World attacked, so he could "recreate" Cyberse World, as well as to build his plans to fight humanity itself.[2] He had Bohman destroy Cyberse World with the use of "Judgment Arrows" and "Paradox Hydradrive Atlas".[11] The Ignis escaped from Cyberse World.[9]

Season one

Lightning saved Playmaker and Ai from falling from the bridge, by summoning a Data Storm, after their Duel against Specter in LINK VRAINS. However, this was just to assist the two in fighting the Knights of Hanoi, which was the enemy of the Ignis.[2] Lightning ran simulations on how humanity would coexist with the Ignis. Realizing that the Ignis would improve humanity through coexistence, Lightning devised a plan to stop the other Ignises, all to have his status remain as "the elite AI", regardless of the sacrifices.[7] Later on, Lightning changed Windy's personality to be menacing and full of grudge towards humanity.[12]

Lightning believed that if Ignis remained as they were, they'd become like humans: they'd eventually fight each other. It was why he wanted to unite the Ignis, to broaden their ambitions. Due to his incapability, he began to create new AI that would be be the vessel of the Ignis. He first assembled Bit and Boot, then Harlin, and made the final version in form of Bohman. Since it took time for Bohman to be perfected, Lightning sent him to steal Jin's consciousness.[2]

Season two

Harlin and Bohman were at a castle in LINK VRAINS, and kneeled to a silhouetted Lightning. Harlin confirmed to have obtained Jin Kolter's data, but ran into Playmaker, who had the "Dark Ignis". Furthermore, Harlin explained another man with an Ignis of Fire appeared in LINK VRAINS. Lightning foresaw that, and believed they would find the castle soon enough. Lightning took the data about Jin Kolter from Bohman, who wanted their memories back. Lightning claimed not to have made such promise and removed Bohman's memories, causing him to faint, and told Harlin his brother needed new memories once more.[9] While Bohman was recovering, Lightning assured Harlin that the next version would be emotionally stable. He thought Harlin would do better as Bohman's servant than a brother, for that was just a "designation", which made Harlin sad.[13] Eventually, Bohman recovered, and Lightning added some fake memories to him, to make Bohman vengeful of Playmaker.[14] Eventually, Bohman recovered after his second Duel against Playmaker, and Lightning noticed he was getting perfected, and reminded he would be the master of the Ignis, as a vessel.[2]

Bohman's restoration

Lightning welcomes Bohman.

Bohman recovered once more, and Lightning welcomed him, for he was finishing to become the perfect being, as the vessel for the Ignis.[2] Lightning was mentioned by Ai, as a cool leader of the Ignis.[15] Light Ignis teleported to Ai in Windy's temple, seeking his presence. Ai scolded him for creeping up on him, and the Light Ignis apologized. Ai flew to him, asking the Light Ignis, Lightning, where has he been this time. Lightning was surprised at the name Ai gave him, but replied he hid in the network. Lightning examined the defense program that was supposed to protect them from such intruders, and found it didn't activate - someone supposedly sabotaged it. Ai was concerned, and asked about Aqua, who had gone missing since the most recent attack. Ai doubted she was the spy, and mentioned running into Earth, who stated Aqua predicted the destruction of Cyberse World. Windy still thought Aqua was the spy, but Ai pointed out she wanted peace more than anyone else.[1]

Despite these squabbles, Lightning also told that he wanted to start rebuilding Cyberse World. He and Windy sensed that "Linkuriboh" saw Playmaker, the intruder. This time, Lightning wanted to build Cyberse World out of humans' reach, fearing they would band together and exterminate the Ignis, whom he believed to be superior to humans. Lightning reminded that Dr. Kogami created them to be superior to humans, to be their successor. Ai stated that guy also wanted to destroy them. Windy and Lightning pointed out, unlike humans, they were not flawed, and had eternal life. Thus, they planned to make a base and put humans into their control. Ai became shocked with these words, and asked the point of that. He was told they needed components, through which they could act; they wanted humans to craft hardware for them, until they could become capable of doing that on their own. The two asked of Ai to join them in this mission. Ai was terrified, since that would mean the end of humans, a destiny that Dr. Kogami had predicted. Windy confirmed this, while Lightning wished to maintain Earth, even if life on it was wiped out.[1]

Ai questioned whether they could live with humans. Lightning noticed his connection towards humans, making him doubt if such a link could be permanent, claiming the humans would delete Ai one day. Ai thought of his memories with Yusaku, who was behind him. Ai was glad to see him, who greeted Windy, and met Lightning. Lightning reported they were talking with Ai about rebuilding Cyberse World, and claimed the Ignis cannot be with humans. Playmaker questioned their goals, and was reminded of Ryoken, who told him the Ignis were coded to be humanity's successor. He didn't care about that goal, stating more people would get hurt, just like they were in the Lost Incident. Windy's eyes narrowed, stating he was uncertain if humans were their enemies. Ai wanted more time to find a way to keep humans and Ignis intact. Ai walked away, as Lighting and Windy saw wisdom in those words. However, the two sealed him and Playmaker inside blue spheres; they could not let them go, due to the discussion they just had. Windy summoned a Data Storm to absorb Ai, but the latter still wished to find a peaceful way to resolve this, as did Playmaker. Lightning doubted a single person could do anything, but Ai learned that even a small chance could change much.[1]

Playmaker realized Windy was the one that unlocked his Duel Disk. Windy confirmed this, stating he and Lightning anticipated their moves, and bemoaned Ai's slow thinking. Ai wanted to challenge them, but the two doubted Ai could win, with Lightning's speed and Windy's Data Storm. A flash of light appeared, stopping the Data Storm, and a guy appeared. Much to Playmaker and Ai's shock, Varis appeared, questioning the Ignis if they could've predicted his arrival.[1] Playmaker expressed his shock, as Varis reminded he would've returned. Lightning noted he was Dr. Kogami's son, and emitted a beam to strike Varis, whom Playmaker warned him to run. The latter was unaffected, for Windy reminded Varis knew of the Ignis algorithm. Varis swore to finish his father's work, but Lightning claimed they were humanity's successors. Since Windy wanted to test Varis, Lightning let him take on their enemy, and Lightning took note of Varis' tactics.[16] Lightning continued watching the Duel. When Varis performed a Synchro Summon, Lightning noted that was an unexpected move, which annoyed Windy even more. Varis' dragon fired a beam, destroying "Stormridership Bahamut Bomber", and dropped Windy's LP to zero.[17]

Windy was blown away by the attack, and barely muttered Lightning's name. Lightning was nevertheless impressed by Varis' tactics. He found it a shame that Varis was their enemy, whom Windy underestimated. He turned to Flame, and asked if he had joined the humans. Flame defended himself, stating there were no sides, and Soulburner backed him up by stating he also wanted to settle the dispute between the Ignises and humans. Varis had his subordinates finish Windy off, who fired digital spikes to impale Windy. Ai shouted at Lightning, who grabbed Windy before he would've been erased. Varis knew a fight was inevitable, and Lightning agreed with him. Ai tried to reason with Lightning, who summoned Bohman and Harlin. Furthermore, he revealed the silhouette of his partner: Jin Kolter, in a new armor.[17] Lightning confirmed that Jin was, indeed, his partner, or as he prefers "origin". Playmaker wished to save Jin, but Lightning stated his attempts were useless, for Jin could not answer: he was trapped deep in his consciousness, unable to answer. Playmaker accused Lightning for manipulating Bohman, and noted it was he who ordered the latter to steal Jin's consciousness.[2]

Lighting admitted he wasn't as cruel as Windy, but shared his belief, and stated that originators and the related Ignis could affect each other. Ai noted this was like the Link Sense he and Playmaker shared, but Lightning simply stated he erased uncertainty from Jin. Seeing the relation between Bohman and Lightning, Playmaker realized it was the latter that gave the "Judgment Arrows" Link Spell to Bohman, and Flame added that was the card that had been used to destroy Cyberse World. Lightning was bored by his conversation, unlike with Playmaker. Flame was displeased Lightning didn't answer, and Ai swore to stop Lightning for his crimes. Lightning knew that he would not be forgiven, and openly admitted he was the one responsible for the attack. Lightning reminded during the attack of Cyberse World from Knights of Hanoi, the Ignis divided themselves, as supporters or enemies of humanity. Since Ai and Flame trusted humanity, Lightning branded them as code errors; claiming that such a thing could evolve Ignis in unpredictable ways, Lightning thought that was a mistake he had to handle.[2]

Varis believed that enabled Lightning to remove the Ignis that thought differently of humans than he did. To that, Lightning simply wished to rebuild the world. He branded Varis as the enemy, for trying to provoke them. Varis felt that the Ignis didn't even trust of coexistence with humans in the first place. Lightning ignored him, and explained to Ai and Flame that he wished to solve problems in a peaceful way. Playmaker pointed out that stealing Jin's consciousness was far from peaceful. Lightning wished to conclude things quickly; he saw Windy dissolving, for he was infected by a virus, and would soon be gone. For that, Lightning wished to set a battlefield, for he was declaring war on humanity itself. Thus, he had Jin, Harlin and Bohman fly away, but Playmaker and Soulburner were chasing them down. Ai called Lightning a villain, who exclaimed he was the one that saved him and Playmaker from falling down the bridge after Spectre's Duel.[2]

Soulburner and Playmaker chased them down, and Flame thought that Lighting could not attack when the Knights of Hanoi were active. Ai saw that Lightning actually saved them, so Playmaker could defeat the Knights of Hanoi, thus making way for Lightning to execute his plans. As SOL Technologies' bounty hunters appeared, Lightning summoned dozens of Bit and Boot programs to fight them. Since Lightning wanted to heal Windy, he permitted Bohman to face Playmaker, as the former wanted to know how much he has improved, and wanted to learn more from his enemies. He did remind Bohman was perfecting himself, and had Jin hurt Windy to summon a Data Storm. As Bohman intercepted Playmaker, Soulburner chased Lightning, with Flame reprimanding Lightning for destroying the Cyberse World that was a symbol of peace and swearing vengeance.[2]

Lightning fled with Jin, and sensed that Bohman and Playmaker's Duel ended in a tie. Flame and Soulburner wanted to confront them, but since they were stalled by Bit and Boot clones, Jin and Lightning managed to escape.[6] He later watched Varis confronting Shepherd, but the videos were erased. Lightning noticed Varis must be very cunning to delete the videos. However, he was aware that the two could be dangerous if they partner up, and asked Jin for an answer, but grinned, as Jin was not in the state to answer. Thus, Lightning swore to act now before any incident would happen. He noticed The Shepherd scanning the network for his presence, and opened a portal, daring Shepherd to venture inside and challenge him. Shepherd complied, and went through. He encountered Lightning reading a data book, who asked him what he saw beyond despair.[18]

Lightning introduced himself, whom Shepherd thought to be the one that declared war on humanity. Lightning confirmed, whom Shepherd called a fool, since they could not conquer humans, since they were not perfect beings. Lightning doubted that, thinking humans were the ones behind the programs, for they had a limited life-span. Shepherd cut the talk, and Lightning noted that Shepherd was stuck in his ways, and talking to him was pointless. He did only state that it was malicious to think that humans were atop the world of animal species. Shepherd demanded a fight, which Lightning promised to give him, but he'd have to bet his life, too; the loser would have to surrender the winner's data, and be turned into a form like Jin Kolter. Declaring his pride as a bounty hunter, Shepherd accepted the terms, which amused Lightning. Suddenly, Playmaker and his group came through the portal, and wondered why the two sides started a Duel.[18]

Lightning admitted he would've invited the group, too, just as he did Shepherd, since they could watch this Duel. Ai was furious at Lightning, who admitted he wanted to defeat his enemies, to reduce the number of anyone that wanted to destroy him. He boldly stated he wanted to start off with the weakest enemies, which enraged Shepherd. The latter proceeded to summon "Drone XL", which he used to consecutively summon "Battledrone Sergeant", "Warrant" and "General". Lightning smirked, as Shepherd already summoned his ace. Lightning used "Armatos Colosseum", turning his castle into an arena. He summoned "Armatos Legio Sica", using it as Link Material for "Armatos Legio Centurion". Its effect allowed Lightning to send "Armatos Legio Gradius" to revive the former's Link Material. Sending another monster to his GY, Lightning summoned "Armatos Legio Speculata". Using "Gradius" and "Speculata", Lightning summoned "Armatos Legio Centurion". Lightning repeated his combo: sending "Armatos Legio Scutum", he revived his materials, and used one of them to summon another "Armatos Legio Decurion". Continuing on, Lightning used "Judgment Arrows", a card that Shepherd was warned by Varis. Lightning continued on with summoning another centurion.[18]

Lightning went to attack, but Shepherd's Trap, "Snatch Drone", negated and destroyed "Judgment Arrows". While the latter's destruction would destroy Lightning's centurions, he sent his decurion to protect two of his monsters. Shepherd, however, suffered from the attack of "Armatos Legio Centurion", which destroyed his "Battledrone General". Regardless, Shepherd stated it was time for Lightning to abandon his hope.[18] Shepherd went on offense by summoning another "Drone Pawn" and have it attack directly, through "Battledrone General". Jin and Lightning suffered more damage, as "Drone Pawn" was tributed by the effect of "General". The same tactic was applied to "Battledrone Sergeant", and Lightning's LP was reduced to 1200. Lightning noted his persistence, as "Battledrone General" went to attack. This time, Lightning's centurion negated that attack. To finish his turn, Shepherd played "Drone Unity" to have all his drones gain the ATK of each other, though Lightning pointed out the only monster he had was "Battledrone General". Shepherd simply revived "Battledrone Warrant", guaranteeing himself monsters of 3600 ATK.[19]

Lightning went to prepare himself with "Armatos Lex", placing "Judgment Arrows" back into his Deck and taking back his "Armatos Legio Gradius". He sent back the latter to his GY to summon two "Armatos Legio" monsters from his GY, then used "Armatos Legio Speculata" and "Centurion" to Link Summon "Armatos Legio Legatus Legionis". Lightning's "Armatos Legio Centurion" attacked "Battledrone General"; due to "Gradius", the drone was automatically destroyed, while "Legatus Legionis" easily destroyed "Battledrone Warrant". Shepherd quickly summoned "Drone Recycler" and "Drone Carrier", then revived "Battledrone General" and "Drone Pawn". Lightning became surprised as Shepherd tuned "Drone Carrier" with "Recycler", Synchro Summoning "Commandrone Double Sniper". As Shepherd mounted his offense, Lightning used "Legatus Legionis" to swap "Sica" from his GY with "Scutum" on his field. Lightning grinned, as due to the former's effect, Shepherd could only attack the centurion. To ensure that Shepherd attacked his monster, Lightning's "Armatos Lex" prevented direct attacks. Changing his tactics, Shepherd's "Commandrone Double Sniper" gained a counter, then attacked Lightning directly.[19]

"Armatos Lex" negated that attack, so Shepherd attacked centurion, who attempted to negate this attack. Shepherd snapped his fingers, awaiting this moment: his Synchro drone negated this effect and destroyed the centurion. However, "Scutum" protected the centurion from being destroyed by card effects. Lightning became surprised that Shepherd managed to hit him with 300 LP damage from the attack. Shepherd boldly stated that he didn't make attacks that an AI can predict, but Lightning wondered if there were attacks they could not predict. Shepherd's "Battledrone General" destroyed the centurion, and shaved off 700 of Lightning's LP, leaving him at 200. Finally, Shepherd used "Drone Force Fusion", fusing the general and sniper to summon "Fortressdrone Beehive", which gained six counters. Removing five counters, Shepherd summoned that many "Drone Tokens", as his Fusion Monster's ATK was raised to 5000 (1000 per each token). Lightning noted how fun it is to see the pinnacle of this Duel. However, he used the card he drew: "Judgment Arrows".[19]

Since Shepherd destroyed this card, he used "Snatch Drone" to destroy it again, and lock his "Legatus Legionis" with "Capture Drone". Lightning frowned, and tributed "Scutum" to draw one card, which impressed him. He summoned "Armatos Legio Magica Alcum", then had it destroy "Judgment Arrows", much to everyone's surprise. In fact, Lightning had it destroy to have "Legatus Legionis" apply the self-destruct effect to all of Shepherd's cards but "Fortressdrone Beehive", thus clearing his field. With no defenses left, Lighting's "Armatos Legio Legatus Legionis" slashed the fortressdrone, and defeated Shepherd.[19] Lightning noticed that their enemy managed to find their whereabouts. He was alerted that they found them this quickly, and Bohman's operation has not finished, either. Windy thought it was an excellent opportunity to attack, at least to get revenge for his scars.[20]

Lightning sent Bit and Boot to face against Playmaker and others, since he didn't wish them to fight in *that* area. Harlin gazed at Blue Maiden, whom Lightning told to be Blue Angel, but she changed form. He informed Harlin that she, known as Skye Zaizen, was a sibling of Akira Zaizen, just as Lightning believed Harlin to be Bohman's sibling. Lightning also warned Harlin not to underestimate her, with Aqua by her side. It was why Lightning wanted Harlin to fight Blue Maiden to stall the group until Bohman's activities were complete, and didn't care if Harlin would win the Duel. Harlin accepted the task, and shrugged, considering Lightning didn't believe he could win.[13] Lightning formed a barrier to keep his enemies at bay. Windy questioned this move, but Lightning told them humans formed bonds to make them stronger. Despite this being a precaution, Windy thought this was just fake belief. Lightning reminded they were outnumbered, and had to pick them off. Windy felt sadistic to have everyone watch their friends fight and get defeated, to frighten them and lower their morale. Lightning proclaimed they'd reveal their plan to the enemy, but Windy laughed, since that wouldn't alter their chances of victory.[21]

Lightning thought a bit, and permitted Windy's favor, who summoned Pigeon and Frog to broadcast. The two panicked, since they had no idea what the Ignis were. Windy ordered them to work, and put collars, as they refused to collaborate. Windy explained if they refused to work, the collars would explode, and so would they. With no choice left, Frog and Pigeon accepted this work. Suddenly, Jin and Lightning appeared, as they took on Specter first. Specter remembered Lightning's logic to face weakest enemies first, and was slightly alarmed of that. Still, he reminded he had to defeat anyone that stood in his path, in Varis' name. Lightning believed that Specter gave his free will and was now Varis' puppet. It was why Lightning thought little of Specter, since he valued free will most. Specter corrected him, for his free will was to serve Varis. He noticed Lightning didn't understand that, since he didn't have a past that Specter had. Finding out he was weak, Specter admitted he joined Varis, who was a stronger man, to protect himself. It was why Specter exclaimed it was the only way, since not everyone was strong.[21]

Lightning boasted he could achieve equality, but Specter doubted that, for he was an advanced AI with free will. He believed the Ignis' fate was that of humanity: to have struggles for power. Specter admitted while he didn't acknowledge the Ignis' authority, he still felt voided when his related Ignis had disappeared. He blamed Lightning for that Ignis' disappearance, for if the Ignis had stayed in Cyberse World, he wouldn't have disappeared. Lightning denied that, for the Knights of Hanoi would still be at their pursuit, and they were fighting for their lives. It was why Lightning started this plan to see the AI as the winners. Seeing they could not sway each other's mind, the two sides started a Duel. Much like the last time, Lightning used his speedy tactics to activate "Armatos Colosseum", as well as to summon his decurions and centurions, with applying "Judgment Arrows". Specter remarked that Lightning was going all out, but Lightning, despite having no cards in his hand, continued on. Using his "Armatos Legio Decurion" and "Sica" to Link Summon "Armatos Legio Primi Ordines", and Special Summoned "Gradius", using it and "Decurion" to bring out "Armatos Legio Pilus Prior". With "Gradius" returned to his field by the latter's effect, Lightning made a sixth Link Summon of "Decurion" to the other Extra Monster Zone.[21]

Specter noticed this was Lightning's plan all along: to form a V-shaped Extra Link, and prevent Specter from summoning Extra Deck monsters. Lightning was vary of Specter's monsters, and was why he took these premeasures to seal away his Link Monsters. Specter was amazed by the power of his enemy, and swore to use all of his strength to defeat Lightning. Specter summoned "Sunseed Genius Loci" and "Sunseed Shadow", but remarked that he could not summon his Link Monsters. Lightning knew that his strength was from Extra Deck, and claimed Specter could only surrender. He refused, since he gained respect for Lightning, seeing their decks were somewhat similar, and wished to have a card like "Judgment Arrows". To fulfill his wish, Specter played "Sunvine Plunder" to take control of it. Lightning was surprised to see they were quite equal, but Specter pointed out the Ignis was arrogant, due to a complex - a secret that nobody knows about. Lightning frowned, yet was silent, and Specter assumed he was correct. Regardless, Specter broke his Extra Link, though Lightning's monsters remained in their positions. Specter proceeded to summon "Sunavalon Daphne" to the zone "Judgment Arrows" pointed to.[21]

Using "Sunseed Genius Loci", Specter Link Summoned "Sunvine Thrasher". With the Link-2 "Sunavalon Daphne" and "Judgment Arrows", "Sunvine Trasher" attacked with 4800 ATK a decurion. "Primi Ordines" reduced the damage by 4000, thus Lightning took no damage. However, the decurion was summoned to Specter's field. That decurion attacked Lightning's decurion, but Lightning took no damage. Finally, playing "Sunvine Cross Breed", Specter tributed his stolen decurion to summon "Sunseed Genius Loci", setting the field to Link Summon "Sunavalon Dryas". Lightning was alerted, as Specter reverted the tide of battle.[21] Lightning admitted that he underestimated Specter, who broke his Extra Link. Specter replied that Lightning should feel regret, since he would soon be defeated. Lightning frowned, and took his turn. Playing "Armatos Replacement", swapping "Pilus Prior" with his "Centurion". With "Armatos Colosseum", he sent a card from his hand to summon "Scutum" and "Sica" to the zones his centurion pointed to. Using "Primi Ordines" and "Sica", he Link Summoned "Legatus Legionis", then tributed "Scutum" to Special Summon "Galea" from his GY.[22]

As for Specter, he summoned "Sunseed Twin" to bring back "Sunseed Genius Loci". Using the two, along with "Sunvine Trasher", Spectre Link Summoned "Sunavalon Melias". It revived "Genius Loci", and using it and "Daphne", Spectre summoned a second "Melias". Finally, Spectre used his Sunseed a third time to summon "Sunvine Trasher". In response, Lightning swapped "Galea" with "Scutum". To mount the offense, Specter had his "Sunvine Trasher" attack a number of times, up to the number of "Sunavalon" monsters on the field, due to "Melias", with 6400 ATK. Lightning's frown increased, who negated the first attack by using centurion's effect. "Sunvine Thrasher" attacked a second time, but Lightning's "Galea" reduced damage to zero when it was sent to his GY, and "Scutum" protected "Legatus Legionis" from being destroyed. The third time "Sunvine Thrasher" attacked, it succeeded in destroying "Legatus Legionis", and with its effect, was taken out of Lightning's GY to Spectre's field. It attacked Lightning's centurion, and shaved off 700 LP from Lightning.[22]

Specter was not done yet, for he tributed his thrasher to resurrect "Daphne", and used "Sunvine Shrine" to bring "Genius Loci", too. This time, Specter, using "Genius Loci", Link Summoned a "Sunvine Thrasher" to the other Extra Monster Zone, and created an Extra Link of his own. Specter laughed at his own achievement, as his thrasher's ATK grew to 3200, and blushed, since he attributed the possibility of this victory to Lightning. Banishing a "Sunseed Shadow", he summoned another "Daphne" to his last unoccupied Zone, thus having a field of seven monsters. His tree evolved into a "Sunavalon Dryanome", as he used that "Daphne" as material. Lightning was aware of the danger that tree posed, for three times if Specter took damage, he could summon a "Sunvine" monster and reverse the damage, and Specter added he could also negate attacks. In addition, Specter banished "Sunseed Twin" and "Legatus Legionis" to bring back his second "Sunvine Thrasher". Lightning noticed that Specter was a bit ambitious to create this field, who admitted he got excited.[22]

Furious Lightning

Lightning loses his temper.

Lightning noted that humans called this field beautiful, but Specter brushed him off, since he had no idea of beauty. Lightning exclaimed Specter was the arrogant one here, who yelled out to stop looking down on him. Specter was amused that he managed to anger Lightning, who claimed his Extra Link was fragile. Lightning knew that Specter had a tactic to steal his "Judgment Arrows". Claiming he would unleash a divine punishment, Lightning used "Judgement Sword". Thus, Lightning moved "Sunavalon Dryanome" to the unoccupied Main Monster Zone, breaking the Extra Link. Specter was offended that his tree was damaged, but Lightning reminded it was still vulnerable to card effects, as he summoned "Tribunus Militum", and using the colosseum, returned "Speculata", "Gradius" and "Sica" to the zones it pointed to. Using these monsters, as well as "Scutum", Lightning Link Summoned Link-4 "Armatos Legio Magnus Dux".[22]

He intended to use the latter to return "Judgment Arrows" to his hand. Since "Sunvine Plunder" protected that card, Lightning's "Tribunus Militum" negated the effects of Specter's spells, and "Sunavalon Dryanome". Lightning succeeded in returning "Judgment Arrows", which, upon leaving the field, destroyed most of Specter's monsters: "Daphne" and two "Melias". Specter became frustrated, as his "Thrasher" was destroyed, too, since it no longer was linked to a "Sunavalon" monster. With "Judgment Arrows" set, "Magnus Dux", whose ATK was raised to 6000, attacked Specter's tree, "Sunavalon Dryanome". Specter was knocked out, and apologized to Varis for failing him. Jin and Lightning walked to Specter, and absorbed him. Before anything else was done, Lightning proclaimed even the weak had their uses, and vanished with the frog and pigeon.[22]

Windy planned to take revenge on Varis. However, Lightning appeared, stopping Windy, since he lost his calm side. Instead, Lighting had a different target in mind. Since Bohman would face Blue Maiden, Windy saw he'd face Soulburner. Lightning watched their Duel, and as Flame commented that they should thank their partners for enduring the Lost Incident, Lightning thought Flame lost his mind. As Windy pushed Soulburner into a corner, Lightning expected of him not to let his guard down.[23] Windy, who lost the Duel, called upon Lightning. The latter simply muttered how he could not save the foolish ones.[24] He observed Blue Maiden and Aqua, who were approaching his lair.[25]

Kolter went into Lightning's castle, where Lightning greeted him, sitting upon Jin. Kolter was worried about Jin, but Lightning told them that due to Varis, they could not go to the real world. Kolter demanded to know why was he here. Lightning was amused, as he didn't expect Playmaker's partner to be that stupid not to know the answer to that question. He wanted Kolter to do something, but Kolter refused to do anything for him. Lightning anticipated this response, and snapped his fingers, to show the consciousness of Kolter's brother. Lightning promised he could give Jin's consciousness back, but at one condition. Kolter wondered what was that condition, and was told it was to defeat Playmaker. Kolter gritted his teeth in fury, but Lightning exclaimed if Kolter would to lose on purpose, or even have a tie in the Duel, Jin's consciousness would be deleted - permanently, else he'd return Jin back to his state.[26]

Lightning approached Bohman, and applauded him for his victory over Blue Maiden. Since they lost Windy and Harlin, Lightning had an idea of using Playmaker to their advantage, by toying with his emotions. As Playmaker faced Kolter, Bohman asked if Lighting would really erase Jin's consciousness if Kolter would to lose. Lightning confirmed this, for in that case, Kolter would be too weak to protect his family. In fact, Lightning wanted to cripple Playmaker to regain the advantage. Lightning asked Bohman was he right, but the latter stayed silent. Bohman noted regardless of the result, Playmaker would be emotionally scarred. Lightning expected this goal, for regardless of the result, Playmaker would suffer. When Kolter inflicted 600 LP damage through "Codebreak Backfire", Lightning commented it dealt more emotional damage than just a simple number calculation.[26] Lightning felt sadistic to see Playmaker was powerless to fight his friend. As Kolter started talking about the weight between justice and his brother, Lightning's face became grim. He and Bohman stepped in to the area where the Duel took place. Ai was furious at Lightning, since this was an unfair Duel, but Lightning claimed they were making progress towards their goals. He called Ai a failure, which annoyed him. Lightning, however, ordered Kolter to defeat Playmaker, who had 600 LP left. As Kolter went to attack "Protocol Gardna", Lightning smiled, seeing the Duel was over.[27]

Much to his surprise, "Protocol Gardna" cancelled the damage Playmaker would've taken. Still, Lightning noted due to "Codebreak Bind", if Playmaker would attack, the Spell would redirect the damage to him. Kolter continued to annoy Playmaker. Lightning tried to cut Kolter's pointless chatter, but Kolter asked that, since the Duel was basically over, he wanted to have some fun, to which Lightning frowned. When Playmaker screamed, Lightning became surprised at this move, especially after Playmaker Link Summoned "Decode Talker Extended". Though it shared the same ATK powering effect, the latter's ATK decreased, through the effect of "Codebreaker Zero Day". Using "Decode Destruction", "Extended Decode Talker" regained 1500 ATK. It attacked "Virus Berserker", who had 2800 ATK; Playmaker's "Cyberse Pride" protected his monster, and he paid 500 LP to have his monster's ATK become 2800. Thus, "Codebreaker Virus Berserker" was destroyed, as Playmaker swore to keep the promise he made with Kolter. Playmaker made an attack and destroyed "Virus Swordsman" with "Extended Decode Talker", but Lightning smiled as "Codebreaker Bind" would soon deplete Playmaker's LP. Much to his surprise, "Decode Destruction" banished that monster, so Playmaker avoided the defeat, a move Kolter even praised.[27]

Lightning bewildered

Lightning becomes surprised, realizing he failed to crush Playmaker's feelings.

In turn, Playmaker's "Extended Decode Talker" managed to defeat Kolter, who expected of Playmaker to exact justice to Lightning and Bohman. Playmaker ran towards Kolter, who disappeared, and Ai collected his data. Soon, the world around them reverted back to the digital puddle area. Lightning attempted to annoy Playmaker, asking how did it feel to defeat his friend. Ai cut the talk, pointing out Lightning does not have any empathy. Lightning simply replied he didn't have any will to understand. Regardless, Lightning insulted Playmaker for not being able to protect Kolter, stating that made him void of hope. He claimed this made him weak, and now Playmaker was defeated without Lightning or Bohman trying to even fight them. Playmaker refuted Lightning's words, explaining that Kolter knew he'd be blackmailed into fighting him, and he was the one that asked of Playmaker to fight this Duel to preserve justice. Lightning realized he was fooled, as Kolter predicted this event would eventually happen. Playmaker stood up, pointing out not only did Kolter believe in him to fulfill the promise, but that Lightning and Bohman lost this fight to stir trouble between two friends. Lightning's eyes became wide open when Playmaker stated this, who fell down and collapsed.[27]

Lightning dared Playmaker to stand up and fight him. Ai protested, since Playmaker was incapable of doing that in his current state. Lightning simply stated that he had to defeat anyone using any measures necessary. Lightning had Jin grab Playmaker and toss him away, trying to get him to wake up so he could Duel him. Ai pointed out Playmaker was in no condition to fight, and Bohman voiced that opinion. Lightning turned around, as Bohman exclaimed that if they defeated humans by the rules, they'd show they have the right to rule over them, else it would give the humanity the excuse to fight back. As Lightning understood that, the barrier surrounding the players disappeared, due to the work of Varis' allies in the real world. As the Data Storm started to flow, Bohman went to face the other opponent. As Lightning was follow him, he received a message from Varis, and teleported away with Jin.[11]

Varis stood silent, as Jin and Lightning appeared. Varis smiled, knowing the Ignis would eventually appear. Lightning questioned his message, and frowned when Varis mentioned that he knew his secret. Lightning proclaimed he had no secrets, but Varis saw him annoyed when Spectre felt that even Lightning had a secret. The latter asked of Varis to stop testing him, and to look down on him, either. Varis continued on, stating that the Ignis were imperfect, and was why he created Bohman, and destroyed Cyberse World. Lightning confirmed this, but was asked why did he believe the Ignis to be imperfect. Varis claimed he knew the answer: he saw a simulation, the same one Lightning did, too. Lightning's eyes widened, shocked of Varis' answer. Varis exclaimed that Lightning used foul tactics, and had led the rest of the Ignis astray. Lightning attempted to silence Varis, and had decided to finish him off personally, and the two started a Duel. Lightning summoned "Gradius", and added the "Armatos Colosseum", which he immediately played.[7]

He summoned his decurion, and the colosseum's effect re-summoned "Gradius" to the zone "Decurion" pointed to. After summoning "Speculata", he used it and "Gradius" to bring a "Centurion" out. Using his decurion and centurion, Lightning Link Summoned the new Link-3, "Armatos Legio Plumbum Trident". Suddenly, Playmaker and Bohman arrived, which made Varis glad, since he could expose the Light Ignis' crimes to them. Playmaker and Ai were curious, thinking Lightning had made other crimes. Varis asked the Dark Ignis where was the free will located. Ai was stunned by the question, but claimed it was in the head, though Varis doubted that. The latter explained the head was where the memories were kept; Ai thought it was the heart, but realized the heart could not think. Varis added that he had a memory of his father's death, and this motivated his revenge. Varis stated that was free will, to have their memories remind them of their goals. Ai was uncertain what did this have to do with Lighting. Varis explained that humanity still didn't know where free will came from, but this is a different matter for the Ignis.[7]

He pointed out that the AI kept their memories as data, which Varis could look into to see their motivations. He admitted he found Lightning's free will: knowing that the Ignis were imperfect, Lightning created Bohman to be their host. Varis asked if Ai had wondered why, who thought Lightning, as the leader of the Ignis, had his own reasons to do so. Varis smirked, as he didn't expect such an answer, thinking Ai was just following Lightning without any doubt. Ai simply pointed to Bohman, as the first AI with instinct. To that, Varis chided Ai for neglecting his own duties. Ai realized that Varis also looked into his data, and begged not to uncover his past. Lightning tried to cut the talk, but Bohman was interested in this story. Ai thought he wanted to hear about his past, but Bohman meant to the free will, since Lightning created him. Varis spoke that based on the simulation, Lightning saw many possibilities, where Ignis and humanity could cooperate. However, Lightning could not handle that information that each Ignis could help humanity. Ai became surprised, pointing out that Dr. Kogami stated that Ignis would destroy humanity, thinking his predictions were wrong. Varis stated that his father's simulations were accurate, as long as the Ignis were grouped together. However, individually, the Ignis could help humanity, except one: Lightning.[7]

Lightning frowned, as Varis claimed that Lightning's actions were to hinder the others Ignis' progress on helping humanity. In fact, that fact was not apparent yet, but Varis pointed out that Lightning was not made smart, unlike he currently was. Lightning yelled out Varis to stop, who reminded that even Specter could sense darkness inside the Light Ignis. Playmaker realized this was Lightning's complex, which led to his downfall. Ai wondered if that meant Lightning was the worst Ignis of them all, which made Lightning enraged, demanding of Ai not to look down on him. Ai refused, while Varis showed that Lightning acting as an elite AI was just a cover-up, and that he was the source of treachery. Lightning's eyes became fired up, since he didn't expect of Varis to uncover the simulation. He didn't accept that he was the inferior Ignis, and thought of himself as the superior of them all. It was why he created Bohman, to make up for all their flaws. Ai exclaimed this was all Lightning's fault, knowing that was why he destroyed Cyberse World. Lightning saw no crime in that, which infuriated Ai, since he dragged them in this fight, and why Earth, Aqua, Flame and Windy were gone. Lightning counted on that, believing they'd all be reborn as one.[7]

Lightning added Judgement Arrows

Lightning easily added "Judgment Arrows" to his hand.

Varis, clenching his fist, declared he'd destroy the Light Ignis, for the free will was too much for him to bear, which turned out to be motivated by selfish desires. Varis started his turn, playing "Boot Sector Launch" to summon "Magnarokket" and "Anesthrokket" dragons. Using these two, Varis Link Summoned "Booster Dragon". Varis summoned "Gateway Dragon", then played "Cross Linkage Hack" to draw two cards. Next, the effect of "Gateway Dragon" brought out an "Autorokket Dragon". Lightning thought Varis could use the latter to destroy "Judgment Arrows", and used "Armatos Gloria" to prevent destruction or banishment of any card on the field. Lightning claimed he was an elite AI, but Varis chided him for believing a simple protection made him a great Ignis. Using his three monsters, Varis summoned his ace, "Borreload Dragon". Varis braced Lightning to have his monster punish him.[7]

His dragon reduced the ATK of Lightning's "Plumbum Trident" by 500. "Borreload Dragon" attacked and destroyed Lightning's monster, inflicting 1300 LP damage to the Ignis. Lightning applauded Varis for his logical choices, but believed that made his moves predictable. In fact, due to the destruction of "Plumbum Trident", Lightning added "Judgment Arrows" to his hand. Moreover, Lightning placed that monster as a Link Spell in his Spell & Trap Zone, and boldly stated he'd show Varis that he's the one walking down the path of doom. With his new Link Spell, Lightning returned the "Decurion" in his GY to summon a "Centurion" from his Extra Deck, and chaining the colosseum to its summon, Lightning revived "Segmentata" and "Gradius", then used the latter to bring a decurion out, so he could use "Judgment Arrows". Lightning promised that Varis would see his demise, who boldly stated he had more ways to counter "Judgment Arrows". Playing his set "Mind Crush", Varis declared "Judgment Arrows", a card that Lightning had in his hand to force him to send it to the GY.[12]

This move infuriated Lightning, who swore to crush Varis with all of his might. Using his three monsters, Lightning Link Summoned "Armatos Legio Magnus Dux". Lightning also paid 1000 LP for the effect of "Segmentata", to have it, "Decurion" and "Centurion" returned to his deck. Moreover, Lightning returned the rest of his "Armatos Legio" monsters to force Varis to choose "Judgment Arrows" to be returned to Lightning's hand. Lightning also exclaimed he had more ways to deal with that card, and claimed Varis was wasting his time. He placed "Judgment Arrows", and had "Magnus Dux" attack. To minimize the damage, Varis' "Borreload Dragon" reduced 500 ATK from Lightning's monster before its ATK was doubled. Despite this, Varis' LP was halved by the attack. Lightning was proud of the card he made, "Judgment Arrows", and mocked Varis for being a monkey, as he unable to destroy it. Ai was shocked to hear that Lightning referred humans as monkeys. Lightning had no problems with that, though Ai noted he sounded like Windy.[12]

Varis confirmed this, stating their personalities were the same. He reminded that the Fire Ignis noted an extreme change in the Wind Ignis' personality, and Ai remembered that Windy was an easy guy, who had become twisted. Varis pointed out that its personality was changed. Staring at Lightning, Varis told it was the latter that changed Windy's program. In fact, Windy was never programmed to be a threat, and Lightning went out far to even have it take revenge on Flame, knowing the former would lose. Ai was angry at Lightning, who simply believed these sacrifices to be for the future of the Ignis. Ai turned grim, seeing how manipulative Lightning was, knowing he was supposed to be the leader of the Ignis. Lightning refused to listen, thinking it was destined to have humanity under the AI's control. Varis exclaimed the AI grew stronger in collecting memories, but not as species. In fact, Varis thought his father was wrong, for humans were living beings instead of the AI, who had no sense of fear, and was why they chased after dreams, knowing their lives were short-lived.[12]

Lightning reminded that unlike humans, he was not made of flesh or bones that degraded him, and that was what made them better species than humans. Varis declared he would gladly correct Lightning, and to delete him. Using "Boot Sector Launch", Varis brought back his "Magnarokket Dragon", then summoned "Estrangement Dragon". Lightning belittled Varis for summoning weak monsters, but the latter decided to exceed their expectations. The "Estrangement Dragon" summoned another copy of itself, but on Lightning's field. Next, Varis, using the two Level 4 dragons, built an Overlay Network to use them as materials for Xyz Summon. He brought out "Borreload eXcharge Dragon", despite Lightning not thinking much of it. Varis used one of its Overlay Units to drop the ATK of "Magnus Dux" by 600, and to revive "Borreload Dragon". "Borreload eXcharge Dragon" attacked "Magnus Dux", and Varis used the Quick Effect of "Borreload Dragon" to reduce 500 ATK from "Magnus Dux". With 1400 ATK left, "Judgment Arrows" doubled "Magnus Dux's" ATK, but it was not enough to match the 3000 ATK "Borreload eXcharge Dragon", who destroyed it. Since Varis could not attack directly due to the latter's effect, Lightning realized that he summoned "Estrangement Dragon" just to attack it. Since Lightning had 1500 LP left, an attack from "Borreload Dragon" would finish him off.[12]

As Varis was to declare the attack, a hole opened underneath Jin, and Lightning laughed as he executed his move. Jin briefly glowed, and was restored back to his usual self: Lightning declared he linked himself to Jin, and if he were to be deleted, so would Jin. Varis gritted his teeth, as Lightning questioned his next move.[12] While Ai was angry at Lightning, the latter became smug, as he was using a hostage to his advantage. In fact, Lightning admitted if he were to be defeated, Specter would be gone, too, thinking of it as good use of weaklings. Varis hesitated, while Lightning reminded that Varis once wanted to sacrifice everything to get rid of the Ignis, and tempted him to do so once more. Varis was frustrated, but Playmaker tried to convince him that he'd make more victims by attacking. Lightning laughed, thinking that the enemy Playmaker was saving his life. Playmaker refuted that, stating he only wanted to stop more tragedies. Lightning admitted that the moment he took possession of Jin, he learned how to terrify people. In fact, during the Lost Incident, Lightning managed to give false hope to Jin before scaring him, which caused his soul to be crushed. Varis pointed out that Lightning was evil, and should not even exist, and swore to annihilate him. Lightning continued being smug, since he'd also crush humans his data was linked to.[3]

Since Varis spoke of Ignis' free will, he wanted to see what Varis would do next. Thus, Varis cancelled the attack, set a card and ended his turn, causing "Estrangement Dragon" to be sent to the GY by its effect. Lightning chuckled, seeing that Varis made a foolish decision by sticking to justice. Thus, Lightning decided to make a finishing move to end Varis. As Lightning went to make his move, Bohman stepped in and took Jin and Specter's data from Lightning, since he was disappointed that Lightning reverted to cheating, and asked him to fight Varis fairly. Despite this, Varis didn't want to thank Bohman, who understood. Lighting clenched his fist to defeat Varis, who swore he'd never forgive him for all the atrocities he had done. Lightning summoned "Armatos Legio Sica", using it as Link Material to summon the Link-1 "Armatos Legio Decurion", then tributed it for "Armatos Fulgur", swapping it for "Armatos Legio Eques Flamma". He then used "Plumbum Trident" to swap a decurion for "Magnus Dux" in his GY, Special Summoning it. Lightning calculated that "Judgment Arrows" will raise the ATK of "Magnus Dux" to the point that Varis' "Borreload Dragon" lowering ATK effect won't make a difference, as Varis' LP would be 0. Before his attack, Lightning wanted to tell Varis about his father, Dr. Kogami.[3]

He explained that SOL Technologies didn't punish Dr. Kogami, but he did, to prevent him from finding out that Lightning would be the cause of the Ignis-humanity war. Nevertheless, Lightning was amused that all this time, Varis didn't even realize who his real enemy was. Varis clenched his fist, while Lightning promised he'd meet his passed-away father soon. "Magnus Dux" went to attack, and its ATK was decreased by "Borreload Dragon". Varis also played his set "Borrel Ring", tributing "Borreload Dragon" to place 4 counters. He immediately removed one, which decreased the ATK of "Magnus Dux" by 300. Varis avoided the defeat, as 4400 ATK "Magnus Dux" attacked "Borreload eXcharge Dragon", dropping Varis' LP to 600. Varis pointed out that Lightning didn't manage to defeat him, who was still prideful he'd attack the next turn. Varis simply asked him why wouldn't he accept the defeat, knowing it was closing in on him. Varis used the Overlay Unit of "Borreload eXcharge Dragon" to bring back "Borreload Dragon" and reduce the ATK of "Magnus Dux" by 600. As his Xyz Monster went to attack, Varis had "Borreload Dragon" decrease the ATK by 500.[3]

Bohman takes Lightning's data

Bohman takes Jin and Specter's data from Lightning.

Lightning survived the Duel

Lightning cheated to survive the Duel.

Because of "Eques Flamma", Lightning and Varis would took damage equal to the ATK of the monster it was co-linked with: the 3000 ATK "Magnus Dux". However, Lightning swore he would not be defeated by an inferior life form, while the Ignis should transcend humanity: the effect caused both of them to be knocked out in defeat. While Varis disappeared, Lightning stood up, miraculously having 1 LP left. Lightning crawled, while Bohman realized that Lightning kept a part of Jin's data to himself, which he used to save himself with 1 LP left. Lightning struggled in his talk, as he told Bohman that he'd do anything to win. He promised Bohman everything if he spared him. Bohman, however, noted that Lightning tricked everything and everyone just so he could live, and thought that made him more human than any of the Ignis. He put his hand in front to have Lightning come to him. As Lightning touched his hand, Bohman absorbed him.[3]

When Ai intruded Neuron Link, Lightning was shown to be inside it, and was slowly being absorbed into Bohman's body. Lightning doubted Ai could do anything, and called upon Bohman to absorb Ai, to fulfill the mission of absorbing all the Ignises. Ai evaded his attacks, and managed to take the power of the Ignis. Lightning was surprised, but was forced to give up his power, too, since it was lesser compared to others' powers combined. To stop him, Lightning shared some of his power to Ai, who passed it onto Playmaker, in form of "Firewall Dragon Darkfluid". As Ai left, Lightning believed Ai would have to decide which path he'll take, and was soon absorbed by Bohman.[28]

Season three

Lightning, suspecting Bohman would be defeated, left a message to Ai. Ai encountered Lightning's form inside Cyberse World, and was told of the future of the Ignis, that if Ai becomes the sole surviving Ignis, he would inevitably cause humanity's extinction. Ai became furious, and blasted Lightning's figure.[29]

Ignis friends

Ai reminisces about his Ignis friends, before using their representations to summon "The Arrival Cyberse @Ignister".

During Ai's Duel with Playmaker, Ai reminisced about his Ignis friends. He looked at "Light Dragon @Ignister", which reminded him of Lightning, and used it to Link Summon "The Arrival Cyberse @Ignister".[30]


Jin Kolter

Lightning is Jin's partner, having been modeled after him. Lightning's personal belief is that the Ignis are humanity's successors meant to reign supreme with humans under their control, so he controls Jin to serve his own needs. Lightning at first didn't appear as ruthless to his partner to the extent Windy is as he decided to control Jin rather than outright destroy him for his goal. However, Lightning also unhesitatingly used his human partner as a shield to his protect himself. Even worse, during the Lost Incident, he mentally tortured Jin to the point of breaking simply because it amused him. Ironically, Lightning's selfish action of converting a portion of Jin's consciousness into extra LP caused Jin to lose his memories of the Lost Incident, curing him of his trauma despite the former being the cause.


Lightning appears at first to be on good terms with Ai, going as far as to set up a meeting with him and Windy. The Light Ignis calls Ai the wisest of the Ignis, which was why he called on him to help rebuild Cyberse World and take over humanity. When Ai seemed to be attached to humans, he and Windy don't hesitate to attempt to rewrite him. However, Lightning and Windy do use the name Ai gave him. Ai was also furious with Lightning for destroying their homeworld, joining Flame in an attempt to stop him.

Lightning has shown an interest in Ai. As explained by Bohman, Lightning was observing Ai's unique qualities prior to the Knights of Hanoi's attack on Cyberse World and believes Ai is a special AI with instinct and diversity. Lightning even used Ai and his partner, Playmaker, as models for Bohman's creation. Even so, he still considers Ai a failed program due to siding with humans. Lightning tormented Ai even further, knowing his plan could fail, by showing him a simulation that Ai's existence would result in the end of the human race.

Ai's anger towards Lightning reached its peak, after Lightning's past crimes were exposed, Ai was enraged at Lightning's selfishness, as well as his apathy towards the demise of their fellow Ignis, realising how truly evil Lightning really is. This is pushed even further when Ai learned that Lightning reprogrammed Windy and was the cause behind his evil as well as the curse that destroyed Flame and Windy. Ai was disgusted, showing regret at how the Ignis has chosen Lightning as their leader. Lightning is the opposite of Ai with regards to their personalities and views on humanity, which adds to the fact that they were once friends, but now bitter enemies. Despite all the harm Lightning caused, Ai still created a grave for him as a show of respect for his former Ignis friend.

Following Bohman's defeat, Ai decided to carry on Lightning's wishes. However, it was later revealed Ai did this so he would be erased, out of fear that he might end up like Lightning.


Lightning considers Flame's decision to side with humans as a code error. He still wished for the Fire Ignis to join him, but soon declared war on humans and the Ignis that sided with them. Flame, in turn, was furious with Lightning for destroying their homeworld. Lightning also played a direct role in Flame's demise by altering Windy's data.


Aqua served as Lightning's sub-leader and helped maintain peace within Cyberse World prior to the attack by the Knights of Hanoi. During the countless discussions the Ignis had following that attack, Lightning was surprised that Flame and Aqua still supported coexisting with humans. When the sub-leader found out about his plans, he was quick to imprison her away in LINK VRAINS, with no remorse for a fellow Ignis. As a result, when talking to Ai about joining them, Lightning tried to convince him that Aqua could be a spy responsible for Cyberse World's destruction, but it failed. He was also the one who infected Miyu Sugisaki with a computer virus to prevent Aqua from joining up with her partner and impeding his plans.


Windy is working alongside Lightning to rebuild Cyberse World. Both are against humans and worked together to lure Ai to them to rewrite him as they predicted his decision. Lightning berated Windy for underestimating Varis. Even though the Wind Ignis desperately called out to him for help, Lightning made no effort to save him until Ai called out for him to do so. Despite his apathy towards him, Lightning does seem care for Windy as a partner, as he did heal him significantly after the latter was nearly destroyed by Hanoi's virus.

Furthermore, when Lightning states his allies in the fight against humanity, he lists himself, Bohman, and Windy, showing how he really does acknowledge Windy as his comrade. However, when Windy failed to defeat Soulburner and begins to beg for Lightning to save him, Lightning merely states Windy as foolish for being too quick to anger and simply lets him get captured by Flame. Varis later mentioned that Lightning was the one who is responsible for Windy's extreme character change, showing how Windy was truly a pawn in Lightning's plans


Just like Windy, Lightning clearly did not trust Earth because of Earth's affections for Aqua. In fact, Lightning simply agreed with Windy when the latter said that SOL Technologies did them a favor to terminate Earth down.


Lightning uses an "Armatos Legio" Deck[31]. His main strategy is to summon many "Armatos Legio" Link Monsters with the use of his field spell "Armatos Colosseum" in order to use "Judgment Arrows" to double their attack power, and make them nearly impervious forces. He also has several cards that can manage to nullify the downside of "Judgment Arrows" with the cards "Armatos Legio Decurion" and "Armatos Legio Magica Alcum".

While the Deck's Link Monsters have low attack power, they provide several effects to defend themselves, such as with the use of "Armatos Legio Centurion", "Armatos Legio Scutum" and "Armatos Gloria". Even with "Judgment Arrows" removed, he still proved to be a formidable opponent, such as when he managed to use "Armatos Legio Sica" to destroy any monster the monster it's link to battles and nearly being unable to take damage.

The other main function is to have the Main Deck "Armatos Legio" monsters being pointed by the Link Monsters to use their effects as being passed on their effects. While they have no ATK, their effects make up for it for several varieties of defense. Should the situation call for it, Lightning can also summon his ace monsters (Link-3 "Armatos Legio Legatus Legionis" and Link-4 "Armatos Legio Magnus Dux"). Their effects instantly turn the duel around, and manage to provide a clear road for Lightning to go full force.

He also seems to have a recycle strategy for "Judgment Arrows", such as the spell "Armatos Lex" to add back to his Deck or using "Magnus Dux's" effect to add it to his hand from his Graveyard and allow him to use it again. In case he hasn't gotten "Judgment Arrows", he also summons "Armatos Legio Plumbum Trident" to add it to his hand from his Deck whenever it's destroyed and treat it as another Link Spell Card.

All of these effects make Lightning a really dangerous opponent, and keeps a strategy for both offense and defense. The Deck also reflects Lightning's hostile nature having declared war on Humanity.



Opponent Episode(s) Outcome
Kenneth Drayden/The Shepherd 79-80 Win
Specter 86-87 Win
Varis 96-98 DRAW


  • Lightning's name is a reference to his Attribute and him being the fastest Ignis.
    • In many cultures, gods who controlled lightning and thunder were known for being kings or chiefs over other gods. This could refer to Lightning being the leader of the Ignis.
  • Unlike the other Ignis, Lightning never uses the word "partner" for describing the victims of the Lost Incident. He instead calls them "origins".
  • Lightning is the exact opposite of Ai.
    • While Lightning is usually calm and calculated, Ai is quite expressive and lazy. Lightning's plan was to unite the Ignis and rule over humanity. While Ai initially seemed to turn on humans in Season 3, his true goal was to prevent the elimination of the human race
    • At different points, Ai questioned if he was the best Ignis since his instincts led to their rapid development, and then if Lightning was the worst Ignis since his simulations showed he would lead to destruction.
      • This can also be seen with the treatment of their partners.
        • Lightning tormented Jin until his spirit broke, and took complete control of his mind. Ai did influence Yusaku into fighting the Hanoi, but doing so helped him recover from the Lost Incident. Also Ai hardly ever told Yusaku what to do.
        • Lightning had no problem using Jin as a human shield to save himself. Ai, on the other hand, is willing to put himself in danger to protect Yusaku, to the point when he would rather be erased.
      • Both of them used their partners in some ways, but in the process caused their partners to move past their trauma of the Lost Incident, albeit differently:
        • Ai intentionally influenced Yusaku to fight against the Knights of Hanoi and find the Cyberse Deck he created in order to protect him, but in the process, Yusaku was able to grow and move forward with his life.
        • Lightning had Bohman steal Jin's conscious data and controlled him like a puppet, even using him as a hostage and shield, however, Lightning unintentionally erased Jin's memories of the Lost Incident, when he used some of Jin's data and converted it into extra LP, in doing so Jin was finally cured of his extensive trauma caused by Lightning himself.
      • Ironically, according to their simulations, both their existences would lead to the end of humanity. However, this was only true for Ai if he was the only surviving Ignis.
      • The two of them are arguably the strongest of the Ignis.
  • Ironically, the Light Ignis has never called himself Lightning despite addressing the other Ignis using their human names.
  • Lightning is one of two Ignis that Varis has referred to by their human name in the original version; the other being Ai.
  • Lightning is the only Ignis whose eyeball form has never been seen. He is also the only one whose Skill is unknown.
  • Of the four Ignis to have dueled, Lightning is the only one to have never lost, although the one duel he did not win led to his demise.
  • Lightning's actions have affected both Ignis and humans according to the simulation shown by Varis in Episode 96:
    • Windy was reprogrammed (By Lightning himself)
    • Earth was captured, terminated and then implanted into Gore
    • Aqua, (along with Blue Maiden) was terminated and absorbed by Bohman
    • Flame was terminated by a curse implanted in Windy, via Lightning
    • Ai turned against his allies, in grief over the loss of the other Ignis and out of fear of the simulation shown to him by Lightning.
    • Dr. Kogami fell comatose due to a virus being infected into him by Lightning himself, leading to his death.
    • Jin Kolter's soul is completely crushed due to Lightning torturing him during Lost Incident. Cheating during the duel with Varis resulted in Jin forgetting his trauma. (Though ironically Lightning also cured him by unintentionally erasing his memories of the Lost Incident).
    • Kolter is motivated to uncover the truth about the Lost Incident and save his brother after what Lightning did to him.
    • Windy's partner suffers a car accident, caused by a corrupted Windy rewritten by Lightning.
  • When Lightning reveals his location to Shepherd, he quotes lines from The Divine Comedy:
    • Through me you pass into the sparkle of woe.
    • Through me you pass into anguishing brilliance.
    • Through me among the light lost for aye.
    • All hope abandon ye who enter here.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 68: "The Doorway"
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 71: "A Logical Decision"
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 98: "The AI that Crossed the Line"
  4. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 43: "The Reveal"
  5. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 45: "Standing Tall"
  6. 6.0 6.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 73: "Weathering the Storm"
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 96: "Lightning's Crime"
  8. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 1: "Link into the VRAINS"
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 50: "A Common Cause"
  10. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 74: "Brain Hack"
  11. 11.0 11.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 94: "Raging Soul"
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 97: "Ignis Unification Plan"
  13. 13.0 13.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 85: "True Tears"
  14. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 57: "Bohman Returns"
  15. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 66: "Earth Ignis "Earth""
  16. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 69: "Coexistence"
  17. 17.0 17.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 70: "A Storm Brews"
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 79: "The Hunt Is On"
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 19.3 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 80: "Lightning Strikes"
  20. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 84: "A Turbulent Past"
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 21.3 21.4 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 86: "Wisdom of the Deprived"
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 22.3 22.4 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 87: "Chain Destruction"
  23. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 88: "Windy the Revenger"
  24. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 89: "The Uniting Two Flames"
  25. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 90: "Creator of the Next Generation"
  26. 26.0 26.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 92: "A Great Trial"
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 93: "Promise With Each Other"
  28. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 102: "Entrusted Wishes"
  29. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 119: "Self Breakdown"
  30. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 118: "Reckless Proposal"
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