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cover
This is a cool Book!

Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day


 

Rockets Sneasel ex - TRR


Date Reviewed: 12.31.04

Ratings & Reviews below

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale
1 being the worst.  3 ... average.  
5 is the highest rating.

Hedgefoxidna Rocket’s Sneasle EX

Well, slow to get going, but when goes almost unstoppable. This card is being used in most of the succeeding darkdraggy/darktrode decks.

Unlimited: Need a big bench, three nrgs, 2 of them being darkness, not to useful here, what don’t you
use the regular neo sneasle. >_< 1/5

Modified: This card is being used in draggy, but as shown to me by my TO (Meg45) Electrode EX might prove to be more versatile. Still, take your pick, both are good cards. Other than darkdraggy, however, I don’t
see this card being used much. 3.5/5

Limited: Pretty bad. Unless you don’t pull 2 darkmetals, this card is pretty much useless, not to mention you need to put those nrgs on. 1/5
 

Johnny Blaze
Rockets Sneasal ex – The artist formerly named Prince would love this card. Purple Rain. Is that Purple Rain Sneasal is attacking in? Anyways this is a real cool looking card.

It does suffer from low HP as an ex Pokemon and is not suitable at all in Unlimited play so I’m not going to even score it there.

Modified: 3/5 – Combined with Dark Dragonite and Dark Electrode, Sneasal ex can be made into such a formidable force dealing 80 damage on turn 2 with a R energy by using his Dark Ring attack. Drag Off for 20 with a Dark energy and bench manipulation is nice too. It doesn’t get a higher ranking though because of the ex curse.

Limited: 2/5 – If you can pull Dark Metal energy or Rocket’s Energy then you might want to consider but otherwise Sneasal is pretty useless with his Energy specific requirements.
 

Otaku

If you think this review is too long to read, just skip straight to the scores and then read the summary for a concise overview!

 

Name: Rocket’s Sneasel ex

Set: EX: Team Rocket Returns

Card#: 103/109

Rarity: Pokémon ex

Type: Darkness

Stage: Basic

HP: 90

Weakness: Fighting

Resistance: Psychic

Retreat: (C)

Attack#1: (D) Drag Off [10]

Before doing damage, you may switch 1 of your opponent’s Benched Pokémon with the Defending Pokémon.  If you do, this attack does 10 damage to the new Defending Pokémon.  Your opponent chooses the Defending Pokémon to switch.

Attack#2: (DDC) Dark Ring [30+]

Does 30 damage plus 10 more damage for each of your (D) Pokémon in play.

 

Attributes: Rocket’s Sneasel ex has an interesting name.  Why?  Because it tells you two important things: it gets to make use of the pretty spiffy Rocket’s Pokémon supporting cards and it is a Pokémon ex.  Being a Pokémon with an owner in its name has a slight drawback as there are a few Trainers you won’t be able to make use of.  Being a Pokémon ex has become more of a disadvantage since there are several cards designed to hurt (either directly or by helping all but) Pokémon ex, and of course, when a Pokémon ex gets KOed your opponent gets two prizes instead of one.

 

Rocket’s Sneasel ex is a Darkness-Type Pokémon.  Darkness is one of the best Types in the TCG, only rivaled by Metal: There is nothing Resistant to Dark Pokémon, a few things that are Weak to them, and most importantly, you can use Darkness Energy to get extra damage.  Just remember that should you play this in Unlimited, there are some cards that are designed expressly to counter Darkness Type Pokémon.  None are really great, but they exist.

 

Rocket’s Sneasel ex has 90 HP.  This isn’t great for a Basic Pokémon ex, as the ones that see play tend to have 100 HP.  For that matter, amongst Basic Pokémon ex, it is rare to see more than 100 HP, like Rayquaza ex has.  If you are wondering, I have been having a lot of discussions where I have to explain that no Basic Pokémon ex has more than 120 HP and of the seven that do, only Zapdos ex sees significant play.  Now, while I said that this isn’t great, there is an upside: it is unaffected by a commonly run counter to Pokémon ex is the Stadium Card Desert Ruins, which places a damage counter on Pokémon ex with maximum (uninjured) HP of 100 or more.  90 HP also isn’t too bad when you consider that it is 30 more than the original Rocket’s Sneasel and all plain Sneasel from previous sets.  It is also 10 more HP than Sneasel ex.  You can also use Rocket’s Hideout (thanks to the most recent version’s new wording) to increase Rocket’s Sneasel ex to 110 HP.  Even for a Pokémon ex, that’s pretty spiffy.  I wouldn’t want anything less than 90 HP: thanks primarily to Desert Ruins; it appears to be the minimum acceptable HP for a Basic Pokémon ex.

 

Rocket’s Sneasel ex suffers a Weakness to Fighting-Types.  This makes it very susceptible to Neo Discovery Tyrogue in Unlimited, which is a pain as it is a common supporting Pokémon.  In Modified, watch out for the handful of diverse, good Fighting decks: Monarchy, containing Fire Red/Leaf Green Nidoking and Nidoqueen, Hidden Legends Machamp, specializing in hurting Pokémon ex, Magma decks oriented around Team Magma’s Groudon, and usually something a little more local in the last spot.  Now, considering how many diverse decks I am mentioning, it sounds like a horrid Weakness… and it is, compared to an Electric Weakness, which really has only one or two standout decks.  When compared to Fire and Water at the same time, you begin to realize that Fighting is really a moderate Weakness to have for Modified.

 

Rocket’s Sneasel ex has the most obvious Resistance for a Darkness-Type Pokémon: Psychic.  This is primarily useful right now against Sandstorm Wobbuffet and some “random” Psychic decks you’ll run into.  Still, that Wobbuffet used to be in the bulk of decks, and is still a very common sight.  It uses Flipover, and attack that does 50 damage to the opponent and 10 to itself, so Rocket’s Sneasel ex will only take 20 while Wobbuffet hits itself for half that much.  If Gardevoir/ex decks can recover (Boost Energy, a key card for that deck, is possibly returning in another set or two), then the Resistance will be useful against it as well.  All in all, this is a solid Resistance.

 

Rocket’s Sneasel ex has a singe Energy retreat cost.  This is pretty easy to pay, so long as you aren’t chucking precious Darkness Energy.  Having the second best retreat is a real strength in the long run.

 

Abilities: Rocket’s Sneasel ex has two attacks.  First let’s look at Drag Off.  First appearing on Dark Machoke from the original Team Rocket set, Drag Off seemed sub-par back then.  I mean, you do get to bring up a Benched Pokémon, and Rocket’s Sneasel only hits them for 10 damage.  That was before several important changes: Pokémon needing a lot of Energy to attack (Modified), a lack of draw back free bench manipulation (Modified), WotC-era “Baby” Pokémon with their 30 HP protect by the “Baby Rule” (Unlimited), the restriction of a single Retreat per turn (all formats), and the advent of bench sitters (all formats).  As this attack is powered by a single Darkness Energy, should you use the actual Darkness Energy card, you’ll be doing some nice early game bench disruption (I think Torchic wants to be active) with some decent damage.  If you have two actual Darkness Energy cards attached, you can OHKO a benched Baby Pokémon in Unlimited (avoiding the Baby Rule).  Note that by the wording, in 2-on-2 play, the opponent chooses which of his Active Pokémon get benched.

 

The second attack, Dark Ring, seems to have been adopted from Wigglytuff ex: (DDC) yields base damage of 30, which is really quite paltry for what you put into it: you paid for 40, and this is a Pokémon ex.  Fortunately, you also get an additional 10 damage for each Darkness-type Pokémon you have in play.  So unless you face the obscure Promo Smeargle, you’ll be hitting for a solid 40 damage, or what you paid for.  The possible additional 50 damage, since you have to work relatively hard for it is an okay bonus for being a Pokémon ex.  Again, Darkness Energy makes a significant difference: if you manage a completely Darkness-typed bench, you just need two Darkness Energy cards attached (plus that third random Energy) in order to hit that magic 100 damage a turn.

 

Uses/Combinations: Rocket’s Sneasel ex is a little to Darkness-dependant on Darkness Energy and Pokémon to be played in just any deck.  If you have a deck that already runs Darkness Pokémon and assorted sources of Darkness Energy, then this sneaky weasel might be worth the hassle.  If the deck is also a Rocket’s Pokémon oriented deck, then it becomes a very real consideration… at least, that’s what is apt to be true for Modified.  For Unlimited, I might consider trying it out to back up the classic Sneasel… as a “Baby Killer”.  Of course, I’d also include Team Magma’s Hideout so that I could just use one Darkness Energy for Drag Off.  Given the raw annoyance power of Baby Pokémon, and the fact that you just need to take out the Tyrogues first, it could be worth it as either an opener (die Cleffa!) or as a cleaner (die forgotten Cleffa!).  Also, you have to love bringing Slowking up to the active slot.

 

Ratings

 

Unlimited: 3/5-Yes, Neo Genesis Slowking and Baby Pokémon are annoying enough to warrant this card just being “good”.  A card that can hunt those things well is useful, especially as a Basic Pokémon.  Just watch out for Tyrogue.  If the deck already has a few normal Sneasel, this one might be worth a look.

 

Modified: 3.75/5-So close to being great it’s scary.  Why?  Well, it shows potential with Dark Dragonite/Dark Electrode:  if you set it up first, you can probably maintain a steady stream of OHKOs to quickly beat the opponent and keep them from setting up.  Even without them, it can possibly be combined with just a lot of basic Darkness Pokémon and just try to set up quickly on its own.

 

Limited: 1/5-It would be nice if you could guarantee pulling a Dark Metal Energy.  As is, it will probably be unable to attack.  If by some miracle you do pull three to four of them and mostly Darkness-type Pokémon then this can become pretty sick pretty quick.  That’s just so unlikely though.

 

Summary

This card has use as a hunter in Unlimited and as a solid attacker in the right decks for Modified.  That being said, as a Pokémon ex it can be quite a big gamble, and of course there are other options available.

 

 


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