I’m not sure what surprises me more: that there’s a Yu-Gi-Oh card called Cockadoodledoo, or that a card called Cockadoodledoo is actually good. Originally printed in the Judgment of the Light set (JOTL-EN083) featuring cards from the ZEXAL animated series, this Ultra Rare Level 5 Tuner is much more than it first appears. This chicken would be reprinted at ultra rare in the 2014 Mega-Tins Mega Pack, as a super rare in 2018 Advent Calendar, and at common in one of the Legendary Hero Decks.
With 1600 ATK and 2000 DEF, the Winged Beast Cockadoodledoo seems nothing to write home about for a Level 5 monster. But, the effects on this monster is where this rooster gets interesting. If there are no monsters on the field, you can special summon Cockadoodledoo from your hand as a Level 3 monster! That’s pretty neat. But, if your opponent controls a monster, and you don’t, you can special summon Cockadoodledoo as a Level 4 monster!
There’s only one drawback to Cockadoodledoo. If he leaves the field for any reason, you banish him instead of sending him to the graveyard. This is sad, but considering how versatile he is, it’s worth the cost. As a tuner, he can help summon just about any Synchro Monster there is. Also, because he can modulate his level, he can also be useful in summoning Rank 3, Rank 4, or Rank 5 XYZ monsters. Plus, special summons are extremely important for successful Link chains, too.
Cockadoodledoo has even seen some competitive play. Way back in late 2014 and early 2015, two copies of the chicken could be found in the sideboards of Qliphorts decks like this one. The occasional Extra Deck Monarchs list would main-deck a single copy as tribute fodder for the various Monarch monsters. Finally, Cockadoodledoo would become a main stay in the ABC-Dragon Buster archetype, seeing play at two copies in ABC decks recently as April 2018.
Being able to be Level 3, Level 4, or Level 5 depending on the situation is quite a boon in any Synchro-happy deck, but also facilitates XYZ and Link summons in today’s YuGiOh. This is a very good card, despite how silly the name and art would make it seem. While it’s been absent from top-level play since ABC’s heyday, the chicken still found room in some Duel Links decks well into 2020. In 2022, Cockadoodledoo has emerged on Master Duel, finding its way into Simorgh, Cyberse Combo, and Invoked P.U.N.K deck lists!
In the wacky, wonderful game of Duel Monsters, you never know if this little chicken finds its way back into the competitive scene. As it would appear, with its nifty special summon and level modulation effect, it’s more than just a meme! So, if you’re looking to add a cute, adorable card to your YuGiOh collection that may find its way into one of your decks, Cockadoodledoo is definitely one worth grabbing.