They’re back! The cutest and most annoying Pokémon
in the history of the TCG . . . it’s the return of Neo
(Well, sort of).
Hello and welcome to Baby Week here on Pojo’s CotD!
The recent Heart Gold Soul Silver set saw the release of
a whole set of new Baby Pokémon. Although the Diamond
and Pearl and Platinum blocks also contained Babies,
these ones are somewhat different.
The first and most important difference is that the new
Babies don’t have the Baby Evolution Power, which means
they CANNOT evolve into Basics. Yep, that’s right, you
can’t evolve the new Pichu into Pikachu, or the new
Cleffa into Clefairy. The Babies from HGSS are
standalone, unevolving Pokémon. There are other things
they all have in common too: no-Energy attacks, 30 HP,
no Weakness, no Resistance, and no Retreat Cost. You may
think that leaves them pretty weak and vulnerable, and
you would be right, except for one thing . . .
They all have the Pokémon Power, Sweet Sleeping Face,
which means that, when asleep, they cannot take. What’s
more, each of their attacks has the effect of sending
the Baby Pokémon to Sleep, thus giving it a 50/50 chance
of damage immunity during your opponent’s turn.
In effect, Sweet Sleeping Face is very like the old Baby
Rule that used to apply to the Babies from the Neo sets,
which made the opponent flip a coin to see if they could
even attack an active Baby. Very frustrating, especially
when used with Focus Band. Even without it, though,
these Babies do have some chance of surviving when
active, although they are obviously extremely vulnerable
to anything that can do 30 damage on the first turn of
the game. They are also a liability on the Bench . . .
especially to Crobat G and a couple of PokeTurns!
We kick off our Baby Week with Cleffa, a card that
should definitely bring back memories for old school
players. Like Cleffa from Neo Genesis, Cleffa HGSS has
the hilariously-named Eeeeeeek attack, which allows you
to shuffle your hand into your deck and draw six cards.
The old Cleffa was near broken, thanks to the fact that
it pre-dated the introduction of Supporters. This meant
that a player could go through their whole deck with
cards like Bill and Professor Oak, play out as much as
they could, then Eeeeeeek for a completely fresh hand of
seven cards. The mechanics of the game are not so
friendly to Cleffa today, as we lack all the broken
Trainers. That doesn’t mean that Eeeeeek can’t be a
useful hand-refresh card (with the potential to stall,
thanks to its Power), but players may well prefer to
stick with Chatot MD which has double the HP of Cleffa,
and usually (not always) allows you to draw at least as
much as Cleffa does.
There are other options for hand refresh too, if you
prefer to use Supporters rather than your attack:
Lookers Investigation, Cynthia’s Feelings, Copycat, and
Professor Oak’s New Theory, will often do Cleffa’s job
as well, if not better.
It’s very tempting to try Cleffa out, just because it is
so old school. At the moment, though, cards like Cynthia
and Chatot are a safer bet. If and when they disappear
from Modified, there might be a place for Cleffa as a
tech in some decks.
Modified: 2 (nice to see it back, even if it isn’t as
great as it used to be)
Limited: 3.5 (draw/refresh is hard to come by here, so
it’s very useful)
Pokémon Organized Play Tournament Organizer, League Owner, Pokémon Professor and Judge
Pokémon Cards of the day for Tuesday, 2010-02-16:
& SoulSilver, #17)
HeartGold & SoulSilver expansion brings back
notable Basic Pokémon that are prevolved forms of other
Pokémon. These Pokémon are Cleffa, Igglybuff,
Pichu, Smoochum and Tyrogue. Unlike past
appearances, these Pokémon lack the ability to
evolve using any Baby Evolution Poké-Power into Clefairy,
Jigglypuff, Pikachu, Jynx, Hitmonchan, Hitmonlee or
Cleffa, Igglypuff, Pichu, Smoochum and Tyrogue share the
same Poké-Body, Sweet Sleeping Face. Its effect is
as long as the Pokémon is Asleep, all damage to it is
prevented. These Pokémon stand good chances to be
Asleep as their attacks initiate the effect.
The statistics for each of these Pokémon are consistent.
They all share 30 HP, have no Weakness, have no
Resistance, and have zero Energy Retreat Cost.
Eeeeeeek! Cleffa's attack, for no Energy, causes
you to shuffle your hand into your deck, and draw six
cards; it falls asleep afterwards. This is not a
bad attack for getting a new hand in either modified or
limited formats; however, Eeeeeeek can lose easily to
Claydol's Cosmic Power Poké-Power.
Welcome to Baby Week, Pojo readers! The first baby
we're reviewing this week is Pichu from the HeartGold
and SoulSilver expansion.
The new babies in this set are interesting, because
they have no way of legally evolving into their evolved
forms. This means that your Pichu can't evolve into a
Pikachu, your Cleffa can't evolve into Clefairy, etc.
However, babies haven't usually been played to evolve,
so this really isn't so much of a problem.
Pichu has 30 HP, which is quite low, but what we'd
expect from a Baby. All of the babies in HGSS have no
Weakness, Resistance, or Retreat Cost, and Pichu is no
exception. Having no Weakness or Retreat Cost is great,
but having a Resistance would really add to Pichu's
The new Baby Power, Sweet Sleeping Face, prevents all
damage done to Pichu from attacks while asleep. All of
the babies in HGSS have this as well, and it is a useful
power for increasing the lifespan of the fragile babies.
Unfortunately, staying Asleep is very difficult, since
the flip is in between each turn. Thus, it is really
easy for your Baby Pokemon to wake up, get hit for at
least 30 damage, and then your opponent takes a Prize
Pichu has a single attack, Playground, which allows
each player to search their deck for as many Basic
Pokemon as they want and put them directly on their
Bench. While letting your opponent set up is a definite
downside, Jumpluff HGSS decks will love making your
opponent have lots of Pokemon on their Benches to make
sure they do the most possible damage. Additionally,
there are quite a few support Pokemon that have powers
that only work if played from the hand (Uxie and Crobat
G come to mind). Even still, giving your opponent that
Gastly, Baltoy, or SP basic may not always be the best
thing in the world. After the attack, Pichu puts itself
to sleep, helping it stall longer with Sweet Sleeping
Modified: 2.25/5 While the set-up potential is very
high, there are many potential drawbacks. First of all,
you let your opponent set up too. From that, 30 HP
allows for your opponent to possibly net an easy KO.
Finally, even though Pichu definitely has a place in
setting up the Jumpluff deck, if your opponent realizes
what you're doing, they will probably not bother getting
any Basics to help foil your strategy.
Limited: 4/5 Pichu is a fantastic set-up card in
Limited, allowing you to fetch many Basics while
thinning out your deck in the process. Just be careful
if your opponent can set up faster than you.