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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day

 

Victreebel #11/102

HS Triumphant

Date Reviewed: Dec. 10, 2010

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.00
Limited: 3.90

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

Back to the main COTD Page

Combos With:
 

Baby Mario
2010 UK National
Seniors
Champion

Victreebel (Triumphant)

 

We end the week with a Pokémon that people really seem to like. (Maybe its ‘interesting’ relationship with James in the anime has something to do with it). I can’t say it has got any hype exactly, but lots of players seem to want to try it out. Are they wasting the time they should be spending practising for City Championships? Let’s find out.

 

At first glance, Victreebel doesn’t look all that promising. 110 HP is very, very low for a Stage 2. The Fire Weakness would hurt against Blaziken FB techs, but isn’t too disastrous in the present format, and the Retreat cost of two seems like a pain, but, considering the way that Victreebel is designed to work, it isn’t going to be too much of an issue.

 

Victreebel’s Tangling Tendrils PokeBody should give you some idea of how this card is supposed to work: as long as Victreebel is active, your opponent’s active has its Retreat cost increased by [C][C]. That looks like a handy way of locking them in the active slot, and you can (almost) seal the deal by running Vileplume UD and shutting off their access to switching and/or scooping Trainers like Super Scoop Up, Poke Turn, and Warp Point.

 

But even suppose you can keep an opponent’s Pokémon active, what do you do with it? The answer comes in the form of Victreebel’s Acidic Drain attack. Reasonably priced at [G][C], it may only do 30 damage, but it also Poisons AND Burns the Defending Pokémon (meaning it will actually do 50-90 damage, depending on flips, by the start of your next turn). At the same time, Victreebel will heal off 30 damage itself, giving it a decent chance of surviving while KOing the locked Pokémon over a couple of turns.

 

This kind of strategy works best when you can choose the Pokémon to lock (so it isn’t something that will just OHKO Victreebel and Retreat, or snipe around it). You could use a card like Pokémon Reversal or even tech in Luxray GL LV X, but the cool thing is that Victreebel’s Basic, Bellsprout, comes with Inviting Scent, an attack which allows you to drag something off the bench of your choosing. If you attach a  Memory Berry, then Victreebel can use this attack itself to switch in your opponent’s techs for cheap Prizes or send a direct threat back to the bench.

 

Victreebel is clever and combotastic. Yes, I’m not 100% convinced it’s tournament viable, and yes, the ever-popular Dialga G LX V laughs in its face and call its mum rude names, but it’s fun, very annoying to the opponent, and can even be pretty effective. I think they are all good reasons to spend some time trying this card out.

 

Rating

 

Modified: 3 (You could make a decent deck based around this card. How often can we say that?)

Limited: 3.5 (Marked down for being a Stage 2, marked up for being cheap and annoying!)

 

Combos with . . .

 

Memory Berry

Vileplume UD

conical Victreebel(Triumphant)
 
Today, we review a card that I am hype for reasons I can't justify. This should be a fun review.
 
Let's start with the pros. It's Body, Tangling Tendrils, is reminiscent of Dark Muk, increasing the defending pokemon's retreat cost. This could be harmful, especially for SP, who rely heavily on free-retreat basics. Yeah, they can Poke Turn the active, but I'm sure an SP player would rather use their resources aggressively, rather than to avoid being locked. As a bonus, Acidic Drain burns and poisons and does 30 damage AND heals Victreebel, which, combined with its Body, means that your opponent's active could be in massive trouble if they can't avoid the lock.
 
Speaking of avoiding the lock, let's talk about the cons. Your opponent probably won't try to pay the extra energy for the retreat cost, and will instead use a bevy of Trainers, such as Switch, Warp Point, Super Scoop Up, or Poke Turn for SP decks. Running Vileplume UD along with Victreebel helps limit an opponent's outs, though they still have Warp Energy, though admittedly most decks run 1 Warp maximum. Even so, running two Stage 2 lines in the same deck is generally difficult, even with the advantage of Trainer lock.
 
Clearly, while Victreebel has its disadvantages, most decks have too many outs for Victreebel to be competitive without reducing consistency. Perhaps an absurd optimist would declare that Victreebel's potential outweighs its negatives, but...you know, I'll be that absurd optimist. Victreebel/Vileplume for Worlds 2011!
 
Modified:3/5
Limited: 4/5
Combos With: Vileplume UD
virusyosh

Happy Friday, Pojo readers! This week we are ending our COTD week with yet another Holo Rare from the new HS Triumphant expansion, and this card is probably my favorite card in the set. It's definitely not the best, but I really like it. Today's Card of the Day is Victreebel.

Victreebel is a Stage 2 Grass Pokemon. Grass has sort of been off-and-on as far as the current Modified format goes: Jumpluff HGSS used to be relatively popular, but has fallen into a certain amount of disuse recently. Additionally, Vileplume UD is commonly seen paired with Gengar in the "VileGar"-style decks, and you will occasionally see decks based around other attackers such as Vespiquen/Combee UD. Victreebel, however, requires its own deck to be most effective. 110 HP is low for a Stage 2, and can unfortunately be dispatched rather easily by heavy hitters like Gyarados. Fire Weakness is also pretty bad, meaning that Victreebel will most likely go down in one shot against the likes of Blaziken FB and Charizard AR. No Resistance is the worst kind, and a Retreat Cost of 2 is average, but one should probably use something like Switch, Warp Point, or Warp Energy.

Victreebel has a Poke-Body and an attack. The Body, Tangling Tendrils, increases the Retreat Cost of each of your opponent's Active Pokemon by two. This is very significant in the metagame today, as we play in a metagame that loves switching. Unown Q is commonly played to reduce hassle in retreating common supporting Pokemon, and free retreaters like Garchomp C, Crobat G, and Gengar are everywhere. Tangling Tendrils effectively ruins any chance of your opponent retreating these Pokemon effectively, and puts Pokemon with even higher retreat costs (Gyarados and Machamp come to mind) at an extreme disadvantage. Yes, it is true that your opponent can simply Warp Point or Warp Energy out of it, but Warp Point usage is dwindling in my experience with the presence of Unown Q, and Warp Energy is only commonly seen in a few decks. Therefore, if you want to make sure that your opponent's Active will stay that way, Victreebel could end up being a good option. Pair it up with Vileplume UD to block Warp Points and Poke Turns for even more stalling fun.

Victreebel's attack, Acidic Drain, works perfectly with Tangling Tendrils. for [GC]. it deals 30 damage, automatically Burns and Poisons the Defending Pokemon, and removes 3 damage counters from Victreebel. Normally I would say that a single attack dealing 30 damage on a Stage 2 is abysmal, but the number of useful added effects on this attack actually make it decent, albeit a bit weak on the damage side. Since your opponent will have great difficulty in retreating, there is a good chance that they will be taking lots of extra damage from the Special Conditions. Finally, by reliably healing itself, Victreebel greatly increases its survivability as a tank if the opponent can't OHKO it. It's just a shame that its HP is so low; as having 130 or 140 would have really made a huge difference.

So, what can work in a deck with Victreebel? There are a few options to consider, even though they may be a bit slow by current metagame standards. Vileplume UD was mentioned earlier, and works really well in conjunction with the flycatcher in order to provide a very nice lockdown on the opponent. Shaymin Lv. X (Land Forme) can increase Victreebel's HP, giving it more survivability. And finally, Heatran Lv. X can be used to ensure your opponent takes Burn damage every turn, though the other two options may be better. Spiritomb AR would also be a very good setup Pokemon for such a deck, putting pressure on the opponent early on by blocking Trainers from the beginning as well as evolving your slow Stage 2 lines. Memory Berry also works fairly well with the Bellsprout and Weepinbell from this set, as they have very good disruptive attacks as well.

Modified: 3/5 I think Victreebel could make a very fun rogue deck, and with just the right list, it might be able to compete in the current metagame. While it is true that Blaziken FB and Charizard eat it alive and it also has huge problems with Steelix Prime, many other decks that depend on lots of switching will be greatly hindered, maybe even enough to grind out a win. Additionally, depending on what next year's rotation is, this deck could even be more viable then.

Limited: 4/5 Victreebel is great here. At the Triumphant pre-release I attended, my only loss was to my girlfriend using this card. 30 damage may not seem like a lot for a Stage 2, but the constant Special Condition damage and reliable healing makes this a Pokemon to be feared.

Combos With: Vileplume UD, Shaymin Lv. X (Land Forme), Heatran Lv. X, Memory Berry


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