The last time we saw Yugi Moto (Dan Green) and his friends they had once again saved the world and finally laid to rest the spirit of the Pharaoh, who resided in the Millennium Puzzle worn around Yugi’s neck. It’s now a year later and Yugi, Joey (Wayne Grayson), Tea (Amy Birnbaum), and Tristan (Greg Abbey) have bigger concerns than the end of the world. They are about to graduate from high school and things will never be the same again. But before they get to walk across that stage and receive their diplomas, strange things begin happening across the globe. People are beginning to disappear without a trace.
While the gang is focused on what they are planning on doing for their future, Yugi’s biggest rival, Seto Kaiba (Eric Stuart), is focusing on the past. Having been defeated in a match of Duel Monsters by the Pharaoh, who was inhabiting Yugi’s body at the time, Seto has nothing else on his mind but the humiliation of his loss and how he will bring back the Pharaoh so he can crush and humiliate him. Yet the only way to do that is to find the lost Millenium Puzzle, put the pieces back together, and unite it with Yugi. Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that will work as even Yugi himself believes that he has seen the Pharaoh for the last time.
Using all his resources, Seto locates the pieces of the puzzle only to discover that there is a third party interested in the treasure. A strange new kid who everyone seems to know but doesn't remember, Aigami (Daniel J. Edwards), is looking to stop the Pharaoh from returning as Aigami is a recipient of great power bestowed upon his people by the Pharaoh’s departure and will lose that power if he should ever return.
Stealing two pieces of the puzzle to thwart Seto’s efforts to restore it pushes the tech genius to create a winner-takes-all tournament between the three. But this won’t be just any old tournament. Seto has devised new and improved duel disks, and Aigami will be taking them into the Shadow Realm where you not only lose the match but your soul.
The Blu-ray is presented in 1080p High Definition 16x9 Widescreen 1.78:1 with a 5.1 Dolby Digital Audio tack. The video quality is sharp and clear. The digital animation of the Duel Monsters adds another dimension that stands out and really pops on the screen. The audio has a good immersive quality and fills the room, making the viewer feel as if they were standing in the middle of the battle arena.
There are four special features on the disc. “Favorite Moments with the Cast” covers past films and television shows with video segments interspersed. “Q&A With Dan Green” and “Q&A With Eric Stuart” are rapid-fire questions at the voice actors about the show. “Show Us Your Cards” is a giant collage of fans who sent in pictures of themselves with their favorite cards. The camera moves around the collage, zooming in randomly for closeups. It’s a nice salute to those who have been loyal over the many years.
And my favorite part of the Blu-ray set is that it comes with an exclusive trading card that can be used with the game. I’m not sure if they all contain the same card but mine was an Egyptian God Card, Obelisk The Tormentor.
Overall, Yu-Gi-Oh!: The Dark Side Of Dimensions is an excellent addition to the franchise. It remains true to the original show adding elements of humor, friendship, and monster-fighting action that we’ve come to love and expect. In some ways, it was actually better than the television show, as a storyline that might take a season to resolve was resolved in 90 minutes, which made for quicker action and more exciting battles. The only downside is that it’s much more difficult for the uninitiated to follow along with how the game is played. Sometimes I even had difficulty figuring out how some of the more powerful monsters were summoned so easily and I’m pretty well-versed in the universe. But it really didn’t matter as the story was fun and engaging and left me wanting more. I am hoping that there will be more films to come.