Playing the official Yu-Gi-Oh Trading Card game requires use of three main types of cards to eliminate all of your opponent's life points. The game combines aspects of roleplaying and cards along with the strategies of chess and poker.
The basic rules of the game allow you to have decks between 40 and 60 cards each. Three essential card types include monsters, spells and traps. Monster cards have attack points and defense points when you try to lower someone's overall life points. Spell cards enhance the abilities of monsters, while trap cards protect monster cards from attacks and spells.
Each player starts with 8,000 life points and five cards in the hand. Draw a card on your turn. Decide to set any spell cards, trap cards or normal summon a monster. You may normal summon, which means bring into play one monster card per turn, unless you play a monster card with special abilities. This is called a special summon.
Lower your opponent's life points with a combination of monster card attacks and spell card abilities. Spell cards may increase a monster's attack points. Trap cards remain face down for one turn before you use them in play. You get a total of five monsters, two pendulum monsters, one field spell, and five spell or trap cards on your side of the field at one time.
The first person to lose all 8,000 life points loses the duel. A match consists of a best two out of three duels.