Ascend Monsters are a type of Monster Card. They are red with a feather pattern.
These cards are placed in the Extra Deck. Like other Extra Deck monsters, Ascend Monsters cannot exist in either the hand or the Main Deck (even with card effects). If an Ascend Monster would be moved to the hand or Main Deck, it is returned to the Extra Deck instead. If a card like "Transmigration Break" or "Degenerate Circuit" is applying, the Ascend Monster would be banished rather than returning to the Extra Deck.
If an Ascend Monster is not Ascend Summoned first, it cannot be Special Summoned from the GY or while banished (unless it specifies another way to properly Special Summon it).
Ascend Monsters have the following features; they do not have Levels; they have Pendulum like effect boxes, but instead of Scales, the upper section has a circle in the left side of the box that shows the Ascend Monster's Phase; their monster texts lack material lines that are the standard to all other Extra Deck Monster Cards.
Ascend Monsters can be Summoned by an process called Ascend Summon. It involves placing an Ascend Monster from the Extra Deck to the Ascend Zone (which is the same as the middle Spell & Trap Zone). This process can only be done once per turn. While in the Ascend Zone, Ascend Monsters are treated as Continuous Spells and are able to be effected by cards that affect Spell Cards, however as the Zone is no longer a Spell & Trap Zone once a Ascend Monster is placed, they are unaffected by cards that affect Spell & Trap Zones while in the Ascend Zone. If the Ascend Monster would to be destroyed or shuffled from the Ascend Zone, it returns to the Extra Deck face-down. An Ascend Monster in the Ascend Zone cannot be removed from the Ascend Zone except by card effect. Once in the Ascend Zone, the player applies the Ascend Zone Effect.
Ascend Zone Effects serve the purpose of fulfilling the Ascend Monster's Summoning requirement. It involves placing AP on an Ascend Monster until it equals its Phase, upon which it does not gain more. How the Ascend Monster gains AP varies, some require resources while others require a condition to be met once per turn. Some can only gain AP once per turn, while others have no limits. AP can also be obtained during the Main Phase by Tributing Ascend Monsters in Monster Zones whose combined Phase is lower than the Phase of the Ascend Monster in the Ascend Zone, upon which the Ascend Monster in the Ascend Zone gains AP equal to the combined Phase of the Tributed monsters, or by outside card effects.
After the Ascend Monster has enough AP in the Ascend Zone, during your Main Phase you can remove all AP from the Ascend Monster to move it to an empty Main Monster Zone. Ascend Monsters never go to the Extra Monster Zones. This does not overlap with placing an Ascend Monster in the Ascend Zone, allowing you to place a monster in the Ascend Zone the same turn you Ascend Summoned an Ascend Monster.