They're a clan that perfected magical rituals to weave the power of legendary monsters into armors via a magical mirror, and clad themselves into them. This power allows them to even control the power of the "Ice Barrier Dragons".
Presumably, after the end of war against Sophia and the ascension of Sombre and Kerykeion, Avance (who has grown into Great Sorcerer of the Nekroz) and Emilia (who has grown into Dance Princess of the Nekroz) have formed a family and given birth to a child named Shurit. They are also joined by a Dragon warrior called Exa.
The archetype is based on Ritual Summoning humanoids that are wearing armor modeled after deceased monsters. The "Nekroz" monsters are based on monsters from Duel Terminal archetypes, such as "Ice Barrier", "Gishki", "Mist Valley", "Ally of Justice", and "Fabled", and have similar effects; also, the Ritual Monsters are counterparts of existing Synchro Monsters (with the exception with "Nekroz of Sophia", who is the counterpart of the Effect Monster "Sophia, Goddess of Rebirth") from the aforementioned archetypes whose Levels range from 3 to 11.
"Nekroz" is a portmanteau of "necro" and "cloth/cross" ("Kurosu" can be translated to both words, both which fit the archetype's theme) refering to the armors (cloth/cross) based on legendary monsters (necro).
The "Nekroz" Ritual Monsters are counterparts of existing Synchro Monsters (with the exception of "Nekroz of Sophia") and feature similar effects. The non-Ritual Monsters serve as conventional ritual support, fulfilling tribute requirements and/or fetching key cards to maintain consistency.
Primarily, the "Nekroz" Ritual Monsters ATK or DEF stats are the same as their Synchro counterparts, while also having the same Level. The effects of those ones with Level from 3 to 6 are used to suppress monsters Summoned from the Extra Deck, while the effects of those ones whose Levels range from 7 to 11 give to the player more card advantage, mainly by destroying and/or banishing other cards. In addition, all of them feature a second ability that can be activated by discarding them; these effects range from protecting and empowering on-field "Nekroz" monsters to reviving them and searching for resources. This remarkable property alleviates the recurring problem with Ritual monsters becoming dead draws when the player does not have means of Ritual Summoning them. In addition, the discard-based effects of those ones with Level from 3 to 6 are Spell Speed 1, while the ones with Level 7 and above can be activated during either player's turn.
The archetype's Ritual Monsters are all Nomi monsters that can only be Special Summoned by Ritual Summon. Additionally, all of them (with the exception of "Clausolas" and "Unicore") have restrictions regarding the requirements that can be used for their Ritual Summons. "Catastor" and "Brionac" prohibit the usage of other copies of themselves as Tributes in their Ritual Summons, while one cannot Tribute monsters that share the same Levels as "Gungnir", "Valkyrus", "Trishula", and "Decisive Armor" to Ritual Summon them. "Sophia" can only be Ritual Summoned from the hand Tributing 3 monsters on the field with different Types.
|"Nekroz"||Level||Self-discard effect||On-field effect|
|Clausolas||3||Adds 1 "Nekroz" Spell/Trap card from the Deck to the hand.||During either player's turn, targets 1 monster Special Summoned from the Extra Deck, negates its effects and makes it ATK 0, until the end of that turn.|
|Unicore||4||Targets 1 "Nekroz" card in the Graveyard and adds it to the hand.||Continuously negates the effect of monsters Special Summoned from the Extra Deck.|
|Catastor||5||Targets 1 "Nekroz" monster in the Graveyard and Special Summons it.||If an opponent's monster Special Summoned from the Extra Deck battles a "Nekroz" monster, it is destroyed at the start of the Damage Step.|
|Brionac||6||Adds 1 "Nekroz" monster from the Deck to the hand, except another copy of itself.||Targets up to 2 monsters Special Summoned from the Extra Deck and sends them to the Deck.|
|Gungnir||7||Targets 1 "Nekroz" monster on the its controller's side of the field and prevents it from being destroyed during that turn.||Once a turn and during either player's turn, by the cost of a "Nekroz" card on the hand, targets and destroys any card on the field.|
|Valkyrus||8||Banishes 1 "Nekroz" card from the Graveyard, negates an attack and ends the Battle Phase.||Allows its controller to tribute up to 2 monsters from the field and/or hand in order to draw 1 card for each monster tributed.|
|Trishula||9||Negates the activation of an effect that targets 1 ally "Nekroz" monster.||Upon its Ritual Summon, banishes 1 card from the opponent's side of the field, hand (randomly) and Graveyard (without targeting them).|
|Decisive Armor||10||Targets 1 ally "Nekroz" monster and increases its ATK and DEF by 1000 until the end of that turn.||Targets, destroys and banishes 1 opposing Set card.|
|Sophia||11||By discarding itself along with a "Nekroz" Ritual Spell Card, prevents the opponent from Special Summoning from the Extra Deck during the Main Phase 1 this effect was activated.||Upon its Ritual Summon, banishes all other cards on the field and from both players' Graveyard.|
Their Ritual Spell Cards are very flexible and have additional effects and conditions that help to achieve the requirements of the Ritual Summons:
- "Nekroz Mirror" can banish "Nekroz" monsters from the Graveyard as part of the Tributes needed for the Ritual Summon;
- "Nekroz Kaleidoscope" is a unique Ritual Spell Card, that can be used to Ritual Summon any number of "Nekroz" Ritual Monsters, and can send, from the Extra Deck, a monster whose Level is the same as the total Levels of the intended Ritual Monsters; this versatility helps to maintain card advantage by keeping the monsters on the field and/or hand intact.
- "Nekroz Cycle" can Ritual Summon a "Nekroz" monster from the Graveyard, and is the first Ritual Spell that can do so.
Each of them also have a second effect that lets the player banish it and a "Nekroz" monster from the Graveyard in order to search for any "Nekroz" Spell Card, provided its owner controls no monsters.
There are also other cards that can give more options to the Deck, such as:
- "Djinn of Rituals" monsters: if used for a Ritual Summon, they give that Ritual monster additional effects, such as immunity against Trap Cards, effects that target it, or even preventing the opponent from Special Summoning (Traditional only).
- "Pot of Dichotomy": can be used to simply fill the Deck with "Nekroz" monsters and draw 2 cards, but also can be used to send Synchro/Fusion monsters back to the Extra Deck tributed by the effect of "Nekroz Kaleidoscope", while giving 2 free cards.
- "Mermail Abysspike": discard any WATER monster to add "Shurit, Strategist of the Nekroz" or "Nekroz of Clausolas". For example, discard "Nekroz of Trishula", add "Nekroz of Clausolas" and discard Clausolas for a "Nekroz Cycle" and Ritual summon Trishula from the Graveyard.
- "Herald of the Arc Light": In addition to providing a useful Continuous Effect that banishes cards sent from the hand and Deck to the Graveyard, "Arc Light" also acts as a deterrent against the activation of any type of effect; not only being able to Tribute itself to negate the activation and destroy the card, but also searching a Ritual Monster of Ritual Spell Card when it is sent to the Graveyard. It can either be Synchro Summoned through various means, or simply used as Tribute with "Nekroz Kaleidoscope".
Although this deck was extremely powerful in its prime, changes to the banlist throughout 2015 hit the deck's consistency and recovery power (including the banning of Shurit). In 2018, the deck received several new elements of support, including Link Format hardly affecting the deck due to how rarely it uses the Extra Deck for anything but Tribute fodder, and the release of the Impcantation archetype, providing the missing search and recovery power to the deck while also providing Tribute fodder and even access to, for the first time, a non-once per turn, inexact, generic Ritual Spell that does not require Normal Monsters to be played. Their downside of not being able to Summon from the Extra Deck is less serious, as mentioned above, and should this ever become an issue, they can simply be Tributed with Nekroz of Valkyrus.
At the beginning of 2019, the deck got some of its resources back with Nekroz of Brionac becoming Unlimited. Most notably though, Shurit was moved from Banned to Limited, returning the archetype's best means of getting its biggest monsters onto the field.
- The main threat to the "Nekroz" strategy are cards that lock its owner's Deck from searching effects, such as "Thunder King Rai-Oh" and mainly "Mistake". This counter-strategy is especially threatening because it can single-handedly shut down the effects of "Clausolas", "Brionac", "Shurit", "Reinforcement of the Army", "Manju of the Ten Thousand Hands", "Senju of the Thousand Hands", "Preparation of Rites", and the second effect of their Ritual Spells.
- One can also use "Shared Ride" to take advantage of their many searching effects and gain a strong hand advantage.
- "Nekroz" Ritual Monsters are also vulnerable to effects that shut down in-hand effects, such as "Mind Drain", "Debunk", etc. "Imperial Iron Wall" can lock the Graveyard from the effect of the Ritual Spell Cards and the effects of "Valkyrus", "Trishula" and "Decisive Armor".
- "Nekroz" archetypes rely entirely on Special Summoning, so "Vanity's Emptiness", "Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo", or even their own "Djinn Releaser of Rituals" (in mirror matches) can detain the deck for a while.
- "Masked HERO Dark Law" is also very powerful, since it will banish any Tributes for the Ritual Summons while also banishing the Ritual Spell Cards themselves after their resolve, making the Deck run out of resources in the long run. It also banishes a random card from the hand after a searching effect resolves, potentially crippling the "Nekroz" strategy.
- Any decks that can utilize "Number 80: Rhapsody in Berserk" can use it to banish the Ritual Spells from the Graveyard, preventing them from adding a new one from the Deck to the hand with their effects.
- Cards that negate the effects of Spell Cards, such as "Naturia Beast" and "Spell Canceller", are also major threats to this deck as they stop the deck from Special Summoning any of its Ritual Monsters (albeit they can be easily mitigated with the monster effect of "Zefrasaber").
- "El Shaddoll Anoyatyllis" stops "Nekroz" decks in their tracks as its effect forbids any Special Summoning from the hand or Graveyard with Spell or Trap effects, essentially making all three of their Ritual Spells useless in the hand.
- "Virus" cards such as "Crush Card Virus" and "Deck Devastation Virus" will work well against them due to the fact they must discard monsters from the hand and destroy the ones they control on the field. Using "Eradicator Epidemic Virus" and declaring "Spell Cards" can rid their hand of any Ritual Spells they may have, and send any other Ritual Spells they may draw to the Graveyard.
- "Shurit, Strategist of the Nekroz", "Great Sorcerer of the Nekroz", and "Exa, Enforcer of the Nekroz" are all featured in the artworks of "Nekroz" Ritual Monsters whose Levels are divisible by their own Levels: 3, 4, and 5, respectively. "Dance Princess of the Nekroz" on the other hand, appears in the artworks of "Nekroz" Ritual Monsters whose Levels are prime numbers.
- It seems that the "Nekroz" armors have the innate ability to affect its wearer's age; the higher their Level, the older they become, and vice-versa.
- In Shurit's case, he's at his oldest when he wears Trishula's armor, as evidenced by "Nekroz of Trishula" having the highest Level (9) among his Ritual Monster forms.
- In Great Sorcerer's case, he's at his youngest when he wears Unicore's armor, as evidenced by "Nekroz of Unicore" having the lowest Level (4) among his Ritual Monster forms.
- Despite this, it seems that "Dance Princess of the Nekroz" and "Exa, Enforcer of the Nekroz" are unaffected by this phenomenon for some unknown reason, although Exa's body mass does appear to increase in his Ritual forms, with "Nekroz of Decisive Armor" featuring an especially bulky Exa.