Ok, I have a little more free time now, so I'll write a review on my favorite card in the whole game...Dark Paladin! The first decks I ever bought were the Joey and Pegasus starter decks, so I had a Dragon deck and a Toon deck which evolved into a staller that I took apart. But at some point in their dueling life, everybody tries to build a Dragon deck.
The only three places you'll find this fusion is in a Spellcaster deck, a Dark Magician deck, or a Dragon deck.
Strategies and game play:
Inside a Spellcaster or DM deck, it's probably easier to summon but not as powerful as it could be without a whole lot of dragons. Just be sure to have a few cards in hand to discard for his effect and you'll be fine. But to REALLY get the most out of Dark Paladin, put him in a Dragon deck without a whole lot of tribute dragons (maybe one or 2, but make sure you have something to do with Dark Magician, Buster Blader, and/or any fusion subs you may have. Inside a Dragon deck with the right support, this fusion could become as strong as a god card! (side note: once while I was running it I got it over 10,000atk points!)
Combos with other cards:
Dragons....lots and lots of dragons. When your opponent plays a spell card, discard a Troop Dragon and increase the atk of Dark Paladin by 500. Get out Royal Decree and your opponent has to rely on monster effects. Get out Paladin of White Dragon and your opponent may as well forfeit unless they want to risk a HUGE hit at their lifepoints by slamming their DD Assailant or DDWL into Dark Paladin or PoWD.
Ways to counteract it:
When Dark Paladin is out on it's own, cards Sakuretsu Armor or Cyber Jar would do the trick. Other than that, stop the fusion with Magic Jammer or whatever.
A 500atk boost for EVERY Dragon monster in either graveyard or on the field is just killer. Plus a built-in Magic Jammer effect where you could discard even more dragons for even more power!
Dark Paladin has no recursion, which hurts it a bit. Also, if you don't have a hand to discard for his effect it spells trouble. To successfully survive in a Dragon deck, or any deck for that matter, he needs a ton of support.
In America, it's been an Ultra rare in MFC and DR1, and again as a promo in the Yugi/Kaiba dueling starter kit. In MFC, they accidently printed the promo image instead of the intended Ultra Rare image for their 1st edition cards.
Artwork and aesthetics:
You know me, I don't judge a card by its artwork...just a Dark Magician that looks more like a Warrior, no biggie. I like it.
In a Spellcaster or DM deck, I give this card a 7/10.
In a Dragon deck focused around it, I give it a 9/10.