Yu-Gi-Oh! Forbidden Memories

Video Description

In ancient Egypt, the dark mage, Heishin, wants to take over the kingdom of the pharaoh. So he duels Atem for ownership of the puzzle and the land.

While I like Yu-Gi-Oh!, I never got into the console games. I had several console games and never finished any of them. I loved the games on handheld consoles, however. Also, this game is rigged and basically cheats at the end, causing you to do hours upon hours of grinding to maybe (maybe) get good cards to actually beat the game. Or you can just resort to cheating by putting in card passwords (and infinite star chips) to cut back that time. Hey, if the game cheats, you can cheat as well. It’s permitted.

This game was known in Japan as Yu-Gi-Oh! True Duel Monsters: Sealed Memories.

This game was played using the PlayStation emulator DuckStation. Since most of the game has 2D elements, such as the story and cards, there was no reason to use widescreen.

My Rating:


In Ancient Egypt, the prince of the dynasty, Atem, is often playing with his friends, Jono and Teana. One night, he escapes his tutor, Simon Muran, to visit the his friends at the dueling grounds. They watch a festival where mages march around the shrine. The ceremonies become darker, with the high mage Heishin and his group of mages, including his right hand man, Seto, being responsible. With the fate of the world at stake, Simon Muran tells Atem to shatter his millennium puzzle before Heishin takes it. The puzzle is the source of great energy that Heishin is after and it must not fall into the wrong hands. After the puzzle is shattered, Simon and Atem wait inside the walls of the puzzle for someone, thousands of years later, to put it back together and save the world.

Yugi Moto wakes up from a dream of Heishin’s reign of terror. He’s in Kaiba’s World Tournament. His friend, Shadi, is there and he uses his millennium key on Yugi, allowing him to talk with the pharaoh Atem within the puzzle. Atem wants to go back to his time and gives Yugi blank cards. As Yugi defeats more opponents in the tournament, their millennium items go into the card. With all the items, Atem is able to go back to his original time.

Upon returning, Heishin’s mages have all the millennium items. Atem defeats all of the mages and gathers the millennium items, and Seto wants to help Atem find Heishin. After Atem defeats Heishin, Seto leads Atem to the Forbidden Ruins, which can only be opened by one of the dark, and reveals that he served as Heishin’s right hand man in hopes of stealing the millennium items. He claims the items only belong to the highborn, ones who are noble, such as him. They represent a pact, an agreement for trapping the powers of darkness. He plans on summoning the lord of darkness using the items and ruling over all.

Atem defeats Seto, but Heishin steps in and threatens to kill Seto if Atem doesn’t give him the millennium items. Atem hands them over and Heishin uses them to summon the dark lord, DarkNite. He’s the creator of the cards and has returned after thousands of years, but does not want anything to do with Heishin, so he traps him in one of his cards, burning it since it doesn’t deserve a place in his deck. He wants Atem to be part of his deck.

Atem defeats him, but DarkNite is not happy about this and transforms into Nitemare, whom he also defeats, trapping him back in his own time. Seto never returned to the ruins, and Atem became the greatest pharaoh.


Do you think this plays like a traditional Yu-Gi-Oh! game? It does not! While the basic premise of getting your opponent’s life points down to zero, or causing them to run out of cards still applies, some of the fake rules from Dark Duel Stories are present in this game. Here are some of the obscure rules. You can place any card from your hand, even if by today’s rules would require a sacrifice since it’s too powerful. You are required to play a card each turn, just one, and only one, even if your board is filled. Weird fusions are made from random cards in your hand, and you could get rid of your entire hand if you so desire just by trying to fuse and it not working. You can fuse monsters together, or magic cards and trap cards together to create ritual cards, power boost cards, or even other magic cards. You will draw a full hand of five on your next turn. An easy way of destroying your own deck. You can even use an equip card at the end of the chain to increase your monster’s attack power without having to wait another turn. You can also play a monster in face up attack mode. Weird right?

Also, cosmic sign advantages give the monster an additional 500 ATK and DEF. Unlike Dark Duel Stories where the card will just be destroyed entirely, at least it’s a bit more fair. Here are the following cosmic signs:

  • Mars ♂ → Jupiter → Saturn → Uranus → Pluto → Neptune → Mars ♂
  • Mercury → Sun → Moon → Venus → Mercury

Each card also has an attack animation, one for each cosmic sign you choose. It’s pretty basic, but also quite amazing that they put animations for each card in this game, along with different attacks depending on what cosmic sign you choose. There is a YouTube playlist with all the attack animations in the game.

Grinding for cards is also extremely tiresome since depending on how well you did in a duel will determine what cards you get, or rather have access to. At the best ranking, you can get the more powerful cards, but likely won’t. The chances are very low. Also after each duel you’re awarded star chips which is basically the currency of the game. The only time star chips are used is when inputting passwords from real cards. You can use star chips to acquire them. However, most of the good cards worth getting cost 999,999 star chips, which is basically impossible to achieve legitimately since the most star chips you could possibly get after a duel is five. It would take you 200k S-rank duels to get that amount, which would take 278 straight days of playing if you manage to start a battle, defeat an opponent, and get into another duel, all within in two minutes. Absolutely insane! So, it’s best to cheat. Especially since the final bosses cheat by starting with 20 cards at their disposal, most of all are the most powerful in the entire game and you cannot acquire through legitimate means, and they can see your face down cards. Fun stuff!

Since the game is rigged, the difficulty is also all over the place. It goes from easy duels at the beginning of the game, to basically impossible at the end. You need to grind for hours upon hours for the chance of getting anything good, and even then it’s a big ‘if’ you get anything good. If you have to face multiple opponents in a row, with no saving in between, and you lose a duel, you have to reload your save, losing all the progress you’ve made on those duels.


The style isn’t anything too special. The story part of the game is a visual novel. The duel field is a bit bland, with a completely black void behind it. However, pressing square when attacking will result in a battle animation, and there is a battle animation and 3D model for each monster in the game. You can view the artwork and description of each monster as well. The story artwork is also pretty neat too.

Sound / Music

The music is actually pretty good in the game. It’s catchy and doesn’t get too old, even if you hear it quite frequently.

Game Info

Yu-Gi-Oh! Forbidden Memories (Cover)
Developer: Konami
Publisher: Konami
Release Date: December 9, 1999
Platforms: PlayStation
Published: (updated: )


About the Author

Asphodel Gaming
Asphodel Gaming
I am a streamer and game reviewer that enjoys older games (PS1, PS2, PSP, Genesis, Dreamcast, Game Boy, N64, GameCube, and more), and indie games.
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