Hello all. Once again it has been a while since i have posted. My last post was a video of me going through my Big Basics/Raichu/Garbodor list that I played at UK Nats, not exactly keeping up with things am I?
Well I have been busy with a few things and I have some great ideas in the pipeline which I hope will come to fruition in this sort of transition between seasons, I really hope I can grow this blog into something bigger.
Anyway onto the article. By now you should all know that next season the standard format will be Boundaries Crossed and on so we only actually lose 2 Supporters (Cilan and Hooligans Jim and Cas) not exactly anything to worry about. So we’ll have all of our favourite supporters and more to be able to draw upon (get it)..
Seeing as most decks will still utilise these tried and tested supporters I thought it would be worth taking the time to have a better look at the new supporters that we have received from XY and Flashfire and whether you should consider them when building decks.
So let’s get going.
XY Theme Decks.
Tierno – Effect: Draw Three Cards.
Only found in the XY theme decks Tierno has gone a bit unnoticed. Probably because it’s a reskinned Cheren which is pretty bad. Outclassed by most draw supporters in the format and has very limited use. Next.
Professor Sycamore – Effect: Discard you hand and draw 7 cards.
Again another supporter with an identical effect to a card we already have in the format: Professor Juniper. Having been reprinted a couple of times already I didn’t think we needed another one but this will ensure we have this card available for probably the next two seasons. Obviously we all know this is a very strong card and basically every deck runs 4 of this (remember you can only have either Sycamore or Juniper in your deck as having more than 4 cards with this effect would be broken). The only question you should be asking yourself here is which artwork do I prefer? No reason why you wouldn’t play this in everything.
Team Flare Grunt – Effect: Discard an energy attached to your opponents active Pokemon.
Much like Team Plasma Grunt this is a very underwhelming card (grunts suck), the only thing I like about this card is the artwork. Being able to discard an energy and disrupt your opponent is always good obviously but this effect is not strong enough for a Supporter. Even being able to choose what Pokemon to discard the energy from would be nice, though it still wouldn’t make this playable. As a sort of positive note quite a lot of decks in the upcoming format will be utilising special energy (DCE, Strong Energy etc) and now Enhanced Hammer has rotated energy discard from trainers depends on either this or Crushing hammer (now without the aid of Sableye) but I believe using a draw or search supporter to be the wiser choice. Maybe it’ll find it’s place in a deck in the future if a super powerful energy card is printed but until then you’re better off playing something useful.
Cassius – Effect: Shuffle 1 of your Pokemon and all cards attached to it back into your deck.
Now this card has an interesting effect. I was unsure as to whether this would be good or not when i first saw it but now that it has been confirmed that we will be getting a reprint of Super Scoop Up in Furious Fists it loses it’s uniqueness a bit. I would much rather play 1 or 2 SSU and hope to hit at least 1 heads and still be able to play a Supporter for the turn. Yet another Supporter that doesn’t quite cut it.
Shauna – Effect: Shuffle your hand into your deck, then draw 5 cards.
A new draw supporter is always welcome and who doesn’t like to draw cards? I briefly went over this in my deck profile for Nats. It’s a solid, consistent card. But unless you are going super aggro with something like Speed Lugia I would recommend N over this, it can be nice as an extra draw support to supplement N though.
Blacksmith – Effect: Attach 2 Fire Energy cards from your discard pile to 1 of your Fire Pokemon.
Being a set aiming to provide Fire types some support Blacksmith is the main supporter with this in mind. We saw Michael Pramawat using this in his Pyroar/Charizard deck that made top 2 at US Nats. The idea is to get fire energy into the discard with Ultra Ball/Fiery Torch/Juniper and then use item cards Bicycle and Roller Skates for draw. With Seismitoad coming into the format next season this maybe be a slightly riskier strategy but it certainly does what it was intended for. Pyroar will still be around next season so this will see play!
Lysandre – Effect: Switch 1 of your opponent’s benched Pokemon with his or her active Pokemon.
Yes it’s what Pokemon Catcher used to do before the errata. Another very strong card, most decks will include at least 1 or 2 copies of it. This can supplement catcher, miss all of your catcher flips? Well use a Lysandre instead. Very useful for getting out of a lock as the only Supporter lock at the moment is Stoutland from Boundaries Crossed which you will probably never see. Utilise it well and always be wary of your opponent’s ability to use this card against you as you’ll see it a lot.
Pokemon Center Lady – Effect: Heal 60 damage and remove all special conditions from 1 of your Pokemon.
Is this card good? Well it’s certainly not game breaking. You’re probably better off using Max Potion or Super Potion to heal damage and use either Audino from BCR or Virizion EX to prevent special conditions. We also now have Full Heal being reprinted which again being a trainer is preferable to using a supporter. It’s nice that it does two things in one but is a little underwhelming for a supporter card.
Pokemon Fan Club – Effect: Search your deck for up to 2 basic Pokemon, reveal them, and put them into your hand.
With Level Ball rotating soon this is a nice way to get your basics out early especially if you play stage 1 or 2’s in your deck. It’s not as good the previous card that had a similar effect, Pokemon Collector which let you search for 3 basic Pokemon. But as it is it’s not a bad card. Decks that rely on evolutions and that need setup can consider running maybe 1 or 2 of this and then using items for draw support. I defintely think this card will have some uses this season.
And there we have it. I’ve briefly given my thoughts on the supporters from the last two sets, hopefully it’s given you some sort of insight into the usefulness of them all.
Pre releases for Furious Fists start this coming weekend (2/3 August) and once all the scans are up I’ll be doing some analysis on any interesting cards. I have a new deck profile coming soon as well which I’ll be presenting in video form so keep an eye out for that.