"Hunting Down the Hunter, Part 1", known as "Destined Duel! Astral vs. Kaito" in the Japanese version, is the twenty-third episode of the Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL anime. It first aired in Japan on September 12, 2011 and in the United States on May 12, 2012.
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Yuma yells at Shark to wake up and tries to wake him up but he can't. Kite returns with the Emperor's Key and wants Orbital 7 to do an analysis. After that he wants him that there's a gravitational force in the key leading to Astral World, then Kite tells him to get the key to respond.
Meanwhile at the hospital, Yuma finally tells everyone the truth about who Kite is and that Astral lives inside the key. Caswell thinks they might be researching the key using a computer and has an idea.
Next scene Orbital 7 tells Kite that he can't get the key to respond using equipment from earth, so Kite wants him to give away a material which isn't found in this planet but in the Barian World, however Orbital tells him that it's very rare, which leads Kite to tell him to give up his own one but it's precious to him because he cannot function without one. So Kite says it won't hurt if he gives up a little bit of it much to Orbital 7's dismay and does it anyway. The key is responding to the material.
Yuma and friends ask for Mr. Kay to help track down the key's location by using a Crashbug Virus, but he thinks it's a bad idea so Caswell talks with him privately and reminds him about the Crashbug incident when Number 34: Terror-Byte takes over him so he threatens that if he doesn't help, he will tell everyone he cause the Crashbug incident but Mr. Kay tells him to quiet down and then accepts.
The key makes a portal to Astral World and Kite plans to go through the portal but Orbital 7 doesn't want to enter the portal and decides to stay on earth to check the computers to make sure Kite safely leaves Astral World, so Kite jumps to the portal to the realm and looks for Astral.
At the lab, Mr. Kay activates the Crashbug virus hoping to locate the key, but when Cathy says that the virus looks a lot like it caused the incident, Bronk agrees, which frightens Mr. Kay, but Caswell defends him saying that he would never so such a thing since they know about the incident. Crashbug X then the virus is sent, the virus can't find where the key is but one of the Crashbug found it and it's revealed that the key is inside a warehouse owned by Mr. Heartland so Yuma and the others head there.
Kite finds Astral, who asks why he came here. Kite asks why Astral knows his name and he reveals he is alongside with Yuma and that he dueled him once. Kite then asks why Astral collects "Number" cards, and he replies that he needs them for his lost memories. Astral asks why Kite needs "Numbers", and Kite replies that he wants to know the secrets of those cards and decides to duel Astral for the "Number" cards. Astral tells him he will face a bad end if he loses but Kite still wants to duel him.
Yuma's deck lights up and he thinks Astral is dueling Kite.
Astral draws a card and sets Gogogo Golem in Defense Mode and sets the Trap Card Battle Break. Kite draws and summons Reverse Buster in Attack Mode and during battle, Astral can't activate any Traps, can destroy Gogogo Golem without applying damage, and gain 500 ATK.Then he sets a card. Astral is scared that if he has another monster with 2000 ATK or more, Kite will summon Galaxy-Eyes Photon Dragon and win. So he draws a card and summons Gogogo Giant and brings back Gogogo Golem in Defense Mode and also changes Gogogo Giant to Defense Mode, activates Double Defender and sets a card. Kite thought he was going to summon Number 39: Utopia but didn't trust his cards, so he activates Photon Hurricane so his Spells and Traps return to his hand, then sacrifices Reverse Buster to summon Photon Leo so Astral has to redraw his cards. Kite asks if he's afraid of Galaxy Eyes, Astral says so and tells him he's a smart Duelist and tells him he reminds him as Yuma but Kite objects, saying he only cares about Hart.
Yuma and his friends arrives at the hideout, then his deck glows again. Yuma tells everyone else that Astral is still dueling Kite but Bronk asks Yuma who Kite is and Caswell reminds him that he's a "Number Hunter". Yuma tries to open the door but can't.
Yuma keeps trying to open the door but it refuses to open and because of that, he gives up hope, but Tori walks up to him and slaps and yells at him for that (Tori slapping Yuma is cut in the dub; instead, she actually helps Yuma open the door and then the others do so), they managed to open the door thinking they're very strong but Yuma's Duel Gazer rings and it's Mr. Kay saying he used the virus to open the door.
The computer systems have been hacked so then Orbital 7 looks at the security camera and sees Yuma breaking into Kite's hideout thanks to Mr. Kay.
Astral decides to face his fear and stand up to Kite saying he's "kattobingu".
Featured Duel: Astral vs. Kite Tenjo
Turn 2: Kite
Kite draws. He then Normal Summons "Reverse Buster" (4/1500/0) in Attack Position. "Reverse Buster" attacks the face-down "Gogogo Golem". Due to the first effect of "Reverse Buster", Astral is forbidden from activating Spell and Trap Cards until the end of the Damage Step. At the start of the Damage Step, Kite activates the second effect of "Reverse Buster" to destroy "Gogogo Golem" without applying damage calculation and increase the ATK of "Reverse Buster" by 500 ("Reverse Buster": 1500 → 2000 ATK). Kite Sets a card.
Turn 3: Astral
Astral draws "Gogogo Giant" and subsequently Normal Summons it (4/2000/0) in Attack Position. Since "Gogogo Giant" was Normal Summoned, Astral activates its effect to revive "Gogogo Golem" (4/1800/1500) in Defense Position and switch "Gogogo Giant" to Defense Position. He then activates "Double Defender", which will allow Astral to negate one attack once per turn if he controls two monsters in face-up Defense Position. Astral Sets a card.
Turn 4: Kite
Kite draws. He then activates his face-down "Photon Hurricane" to return Spell and Trap Cards Astral controls to his hand, up to the number of cards he has in his own hand; both of Astral's Set cards and "Double Defender" are returned. Kite then Tributes "Reverse Buster" in order to Tribute Summon "Photon Leo" (6/2100/1100) in Attack Position. Since "Photon Leo" was Normal Summoned, Kite activates its effect to force Astral to shuffle all the cards in his hand back into his Deck and then draw the same amount of cards he returned. Kite's hand contains "Galaxy Storm", "Photon Circle", "Photon Spear", and "Armored Back".
Kite then activates "Photon Spear", equipping it to "Photon Leo" and granting it the ability to inflict piercing damage. "Photon Leo" attacks and destroys "Gogogo Giant". "Photon Leo" then inflicts piercing damage to Astral (Astral: 4000 → 1900 LP).
Duel continues in the next episode.
The following cards appeared in this episode. Cards in italics debuted here.