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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day

 

Blastoise #13/95

HS Unleashed

Date Reviewed: May 28, 2010

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.33
Limited: 3.33

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
Top 4 UK Nats

Blastoise (Unleashed)

 

Today’s card is the Promo card from the set. It seems that with HGSS sets we are getting Promos that are at least semi-playable, and that’s a very good thing.

 

This card even got some proper hype when the Japanese translations came out. If you go on Pokémon websites you will see more people trying to build decks with this card than anything else from the new set. Let’s see if it deserves all of this attention.

 

Blastoise is a Stage 2 with a good 130 HP, an unpleasant Retreat cost of three (better find room for those Warp Points), and the very worst Weakness in the game (x2 Lightning). See Monday’s review for details of why this is an appalling handicap for any card. If you can’t be bothered, I’ll just say one word: Luxray.

 

Blastoise comes with a Pokémon Power, which is almost always a good thing. Wash Out allows you to move one Water Energy per turn from a Benched to an Active Pokémon. That’s a fairly useful ability which can act as pseudo acceleration and conserve the Energy you have on the Field.

 

The thing that really gets Blastoise noticed is the attack. Hydro Launcher can hit ANY of your opponent’s Pokémon for 100 damage. That’s huge. That’s a OHKO and a Prize on any Claydol, Uxie, Azelf, un-Levelled Up SP Basic, most Stage 1s and even the odd Stage 2 (like . . . ummm . . . Jumpluff).  Before we get carried away though, it’s obvious that such a ludicrously powerful attack is going to come with some serious drawbacks. In this case, Hydro Launcher costs [W][W][C][C] to use, and it sends two Water Energy back to your hand.

 

Normally, that massive cost would be enough to condemn Blastoise to the binder. It seems that it would take at least 3-4 turns to get it powered up, and even then you could only use the attack every other turn. Luckily, there is a solution in the shape of Feraligatr Prime.

 

Feraligatr Prime’s Rain Dance Power lets you attach as many Water Energy as you like per turn to any of your Water Pokémon. So, with enough Water Energy in hand, you could get Blastoise using Hydro Launcher in one turn, and have it attacking every turn.  Sounds pretty broken doesn’t it? Until you realise that this combo relies on setting up two Stage 2 Pokémon, one of which is an easy OHKO for the most popular card in the format, and on maintaining a hand full of Energy.

 

For those reasons, Blastoise/Feraligatr just seems too slow and clunky to make a really big impact in a metagame characterised by very fast, disruptive decks, most of which seem to play Luxray GL. If you CAN ever get this set up, and avoid the OHKOs, then this deck would be a serious beast. Would you be able to do that consistently in today’s TCG environment? I doubt it. Maybe when and if the format slows down . . . but not until then.

 

Rating

 

Modified: 2.5 (Ridiculously powerful in theory, but waiting for a slower format)

Limited: 2.5 (maybe if you also pulled Floatzel UL . . . but getting a combo like that is unlikely in Limited)

 

Combos with . . .

 

Feraligatr Prime . . . bringing back memories of old school Rain Dance decks!


Otaku

Name: Blastoise

Set/Card#/Rarity: HS – Unleashed 13/96 Rare

Type: Water

Stage: 2 (Evolves from Wartortle)

Hit Points: 130

Weakness: Lightning x2

Resistance: None

Retreat: CCC

Poké-Power: Wash Out

As often as you like during your turn (before your attack) you may move a Water Energy attached to 1 of your Benched Pokémon to your Active Pokémon.  This power can’t be used if Blastoise is affected by a Special Condition.

Attack: (WWCC) Hydro Launcher

Return 2 Water Energy attached to Blastoise to your hand.  Select 1 of your opponent’s Pokémon.  This attack does 100 damage to that Pokémon (Don’t apply Weakness or Resistance for Benched Pokémon.)

 

We have an abridged review today, but not because we have a bad card.  In fact, it’s almost the opposite.  Blastoise has average (for a Stage 2) HP and is hurt by having the worst possible Weakness in the current format, lack of Resistance and hefty three Energy Retreat Cost.  However it is helped by having a great attack.  That’s right; the Poké-Power isn’t what makes this card, though it’s a decent back-up option.  It’s the attack that matters here: 100 points of damage is just enough to slaughter most Benched supporting Pokémon and not-fully-Evolved Pokémon.  Historically if it has been enough to dominate the metagame, it’s at least been a serious contender, even when requiring a hideously complicated combo to get it off turn after turn.

 

Here we’ll have to run two Stage 2 Pokémon (this Blastoise and Feraligatr Prime) but you’ll be able to shred the Bench.  What will keep this deck in line is it is totally Poké-Power dependant: if you can’t use either Pokémon’s Poké-Power you’re stuck hitting every other turn with Blastoise and thus really having to rely on Feraligatr Prime to attack.  Neither option sounds fun.

 

Speaking of Poké-Powers, I’ll point out that Wash Out at least creates the option of a non-Raindance fueled variant.  Since you can rip Energy from other Pokémon, anything with Energy acceleration (even onto itself) or that just has fantastic staying power and is hard to KO can eventually feed Blastoise.  Nothing really jumped out at me, but at least I can tell you readers what to keep an eye out for, either in new sets or perhaps sitting in a binder somewhere.

 

As a last note, if you can pull it in Limited, run it.  Stage 2 with respectable stats (for Limited) and the ability to destroy anything hiding on your opponent’s Bench while leeching Energy from whatever you’ve got hiding on your own.

 

Ratings

 

Modified: 3.5/5 

Limited: 4/5 

Combos with: Feraligatr Prime

 

-Otaku

Mad Mattezhion
 Professor Bathurst League Australia

Blastoise (HS Unleashed)
 
Here's the card you've been waiting all week for! Blastoise HSU has received a lot of hype, so the reveiw crew will now be giving our judgement of whether or not Blastoise is worth all of the excitement.
 
Nice picture, I must say. Blastoise at least looks violent, and Fukuda has done a brilliant job on his theme for the Water Pokemon in this set.
 
Now the stats. Blastoise sits on a standard but still healthy 130 HP with the dreaded x2 weakness to Lightning. No resistance is expected (why can't Watr have Fire resistance?) as is the retreat cost of 3, but that doesn't mean we like it. So far, survivability seems low.
 
Blastoise is packing a very nice power named Wash Out, which is pretty much a clone of the power used by Gardevoir PT, except that it works with W energy insted of P energy. For those who haven't seen Gardevoir, Wash Out allows you to move a W energy attached to one of your benched Pokemon to your Acvtive Pokemon, as many times as you like during your turn. It helps pay the retreat cost if you really have to, though more likely you'll use Warp Point/Switch and then move the energy to your new attacker. However, Wash Out is not the reason for the hype surrounding this card.
 
The reason this card was so hyped is because of the single attack. Hydro Launcher costs WWCC and makes you return 2 W energy attached to Blastoise to your hand. For that hefty cost, you get to pick one of your opponent's pokemon in play and smack it for a whopping 100 damage. Best of all, you aren't limited to picking a benched Pokemon, so feel free to drench the main attcker as well.
 
*imagines evil G.I. Blastoise carrying a bazooka, followed by gratuitous explosions and bits of shattered Claydols littering the battlefield*
 
The second reason this attack was hyped is because of the recent rerelease of Rain Dance through Feraligatr Prime. The general thought is that if you can get the cards into your hand quickly enough, you can get both Blastoise and Feraligatr into play by T2 and begin smahing your opponent's techs without mercy, leaving them completely behind with no place to run.
 
Unfortunately, we no longer have the completely broken draw power seen in Base set, so setting up that quickly is a major achievement which probably won't happen very often. Other points against this card are the increasing use of Manectric PT and Bench Shield, both of which prevent Blastoise from acting like a demented fire hydrant. Even more problematic, Luxray GL Lv X can OHKO the big turtle with just one assisting Flash Bite from Crobat G while Gengar SF has a field day with all of the support poke-powers Blastoise would require to be effective (the same reason Blastoise PT failed to live up to the hype).
 
Looking at all of the different factors, I'm still inclined to like Blastoise. That snipe is so tempting, and the power isn't bad either. Feraligatr Prime makes this a real threat and Blastoise PT could also be worked in for more snipes and acceleration. Uxie and Claydol provide enugh draw to give it a chance of working, and Exploud SV can be used to avoid the weakness issue. I don't know if anyone can pull it together and make a tire 1 deck out of Blastoise HSU, but that snipe (and the fact it was a Prerelease promo) means a lot of people are going to try.
 
My final word? Start stocking up on Bench Shields and Manectric. Even without Blastoise, you still have Garchomp C Lv X, Relicanth SV and Gengar Lv X to deal with.Heavy snipers are on the rise and getting worse!
 
Modified: 3.75 (it looks cool, it's a promo and that snipe means it will see play)
Limited: 3 (just get Floatzel into play, and you have a moster on your hands. Without Floatzel you'll have to settle for attacking every other turn though, which hurts a lot)
 
Combos with: Feraligatr Prime, Blastoie PT and Exploud SV


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