It seems weird, but this card has been getting a bit of
minor, low-key hype. Even minor hype for a Pokémon with
a single four Energy attack seems highly unlikely in
this format doesn’t it? Maybe we should really take a
look at this card . . .
is a Fighting Type Stage 2 with a bigger than average
140 HP. It has Water Weakness which probably wouldn’t
have mattered before Triumphant was released, but now
Gyarados decks are getting
popular again, could be a real liability (especially as
Gyarados resists Fighting).
Nidoking can at least boast
an awesome Lightning Resistance, even if the Retreat
cost of three is something it would likely try to avoid
So . . . why the hype then? To answer that question, we
need to take a look at the PokeBody, Pheromone Stamina.
This has the effect of giving
Nidoking an extra 20 HP for every
Nidoqueen in play, boosting
his HP to a theoretical 220 HP, or 240 with an Expert
Factor in the healing from
Nidoqueen RR’s Maternal Comfort Body (though you
can only use one per turn), and presumably this thing
NEVER DIES while it smashes Luxray
Notice I used the word ‘theoretical’. No-one running
this should ever assume that they are going to be
hitting those kind of
numbers. Even under ideal conditions, it is unlikely
that you will be setting up more than 1-2
Nidoqueen: there simply
won’t be time or Bench space for anything
else- after all, you won’t be getting that set
up with out help from Uxie
and Azelf, and that’s before
you even think about a back up
Nidoking and any other techs you might want to
Then there is the problem of speed. Not only do you have
the clunky set up, you also have the fact that Venomous
Horn costs [F][F][C][C].
True, it does do 80 damage (let’s call it 90 with the
auto-Poison), but for that kind of Energy, it’s pretty
much the minimum you would expect. While you try and
power that up (and bench Queens!), your opponent is
going to have plenty of time to come up with answers, or
just disrupt you with KOs to the extent that the deck is
never going to work.
So yeah, you can include me with those people who don’t
understand why this card is getting ANY attention. It
moves at roughly the speed of a tectonic plate and is
destroyed by two of the most popular decks in the format
at the moment, with Dialga G
LV X shutting off the body and
Gyarados smacking it for Weakness.
The revival of ‘Monarchy’ decks just got put on hold.
Modified: 2 (potential huge HP, but the concept doesn’t
Limited: 2 (There is a decent
Nidoqueen in the set, but are you really going to
pull multiple Stage 2s from 6 packs?)
Combos With . . .
Happy Thursday, Pojo readers! Our Card of the Day
week continues with a card from the HS Triumphant
expansion that received a fair bit of hype before the
set was released, but has seen much play since. Today's
Card of the Day is Nidoking.
Nidoking is a Stage 2 Fighting Pokemon. Fighting Pokemon
are somewhat common in today's metagame, as Machamp and
Promo Toxicroak G are rather common, with the occasional
appearance by things like Donphan, Relicanth, and Mankey
SV. 140 HP is good for a Stage 2, it means that Nidoking
should be able to withstand a hit or two. Water Weakness
is terrible with Gyarados's sudden surge in popularity.
Lightning Resistance, however, is quite awesome: Luxray
will have a much more difficult time making a dent into
Nidoking, whereas Nidoking can easily OHKO back.
Finally, a Retreat Cost of 3 is pretty terrible, so make
sure to use Warp Point/Warp Energy/Switch to retreat.
Nidoking has a Poke-Body and a single attack. The Body,
Pheromone Stamina, makes Nidoking have 20 more HP for
each Nidoqueen you have in play. This makes Nidoqueen RR
a natural partner for Nidoking, as Multiple Nidoqueens
on the Bench will raise Nidoking's HP to high levels,
and Maternal Comfort will remove damage counters between
turns. However, getting a Nidoking and multiple
Nidoqueens out at the same time will prove to be very
difficult, as getting out multiple Stage 2s can be very
difficult in our current metagame. Additionally, even
with a single Nidoqueen HP boost, Gyarados will still
OHKO with Tail Revenge as long as all three Magikarps
are in the discard pile, so keep that in mind if you
were thinking of running a Nidoking deck for Cities.
Nidoking's single attack, Venomous Horn, does 80 damage
and automatically Poisons for [FFCC]. This attack is
super-expensive, but works with the idea of having
Nidoking as a tank pretty well. However, 4 energy
attacks are simply too slow for the fast-paced Modified
format we have today, so this one may have to wait until
the rotation to enjoy great use.
Modified: 2.25/5 Nidoking's attack is too expensive for
the damage output, and Pheromone Stamina requires too
much setup to be effective in today's metagame. Being
Gyarados bait certainly doesn't help matters out,
either. Maybe after rotation this will see some play,
but not quite yet.
Limited: 3/5 High HP, decent Weakness, good Resistance,
a decent attack, and some Colorless Energy requirements
make Nidoking a decent pick for Limited. Of course, it
is a Stage 2 and Pheromone Stamina will rarely be
useful, but 80 + auto Poison for 4 really is pretty
decent in Limited. Chances are, if you get it out,
Combos With: Nidoqueen RR
One thing that interests me about Triumphant is that it
has the potential to be the next Stormfront: a set which
produces multiple archetypes that radically change the
game. However, unlike Stormfront, there are no Pokemon
that are virtually guaranteed to be archetypes, no
Machamp or Gengar which outright screams “Play me, I'm
awesome!*”(Ironically, the only Pokemon that could fit
that role in the set are Machamp and Gengar Prime.)
Nidoking, along with the previously reviewed Mew and
Yanmega Primes, fits this description.
*That being said, a screaming card would be rather
weird. So there you go.
Anyways, Nidoking combos well with Nidoqueen, gaining
+20 HP for each one you have in play. The best choice,
of course, is Nidoqueen RR, whose healing abilities have
been evident in previous formats. This strategy would
have been better served in a format with enough
consistency to assemble two Stage 2s at the same time,
but it can still be done, especially considering each
card's tanking abilities. Venomous Horn is crazy
expensive at FFCC, and 80 plus poison isn't great
damage. Then again, the one constant about tanking decks
is that its attacks may very well be horrible, so long
as it can stay alive long enough. That will be the
factor by which Nidoking should ultimately be judged.
Mad Mattezhion Professor Bathurst League Australia
Nidoking (HS Triumphant)
Hey guys, I managed to get online! Woohoo! Hopefully
I'll be able to solve my tech problems some time soon,
but until then I won't have much luck getting reviews
in. Stay tuned, I will get caught up!
Now the actual review. Nidoking is my favourite Pokemon
from the whole franchise (purple yet still monstrously
awesome, a truly rare combination!) and this card is
also a contender for the highest possible HP score in
the history of the game, so expect a lot of fanboy love
The stats: 140 HP (but easily boosted) Fighting Stage 2
with Water weakness, Lightning resistance and a retreat
cost of 3. These are classic stats of a high damage,
high investment Pokemon. Sadly, very few Pokemon with
high costs have ever proven playable, but hopefully
Nidoking can buck the trend!
There are 2 abilities, an attack and a pokebody. The
body, Pheremone Stamina, is the reson that Nidoking can
claim the current title of highest possible HP in the
game. Pheremone Stamina boosts Nidoking's HP by 20 for
each Nidoqueen you have in play, so with 4 'queens,
Nidoking can get 220 HP! Add expert belt for a whopping
240! Even in unlimited with cards like Low Pressure
system as well as recent cards like Expert Belt and
Shaymin (Ground form) Lv X, Torterra can't manage more
than 230 HP.
Sadly, I can't say that the body is all that brilliant.
While massive HP is always good, the tradeoff is usually
being unplayable in every other way. In this case, it
means you need 4 stage 2 Pokemon in play to get the
maximum effect. Still, the claim of Highest HP is not to
Now the attack. Venomous Horn pretty much spells it out,
since the attack deals heavy damage (80 to be exact) and
inflcits auto-poison. Sadly, the cost is FFCC, which
means a 3 turn minimum to attack and a fairly heavy
investment for which you would expect more damage. At
least Double Colourless energy can be used, but the
attack is a letdown on such an awesome Pokemon. It
should have 120 base damage with the auto-posion, or 100
base damage with a stronger posion (the
2-damage-counters-in-between-turns variety that is so
commonly seen with Toxic attacks)
The real problem with Nidoking is the lack of partners.
While Nidoqueen RR is awesome in every way and keeps
Nidoking healthy, the rotation removed Nidoqueen MT with
it's Mother Pheremone pokebody which would have been the
perfect for both boosting Nidkoking's HP and lowering
the attack cost (and it stacked!). Running 2 of each
Nidoqueen while running some Nidoking RR for the
defensive body (putting damage counters on the
opponent's attackers) would have made an awesome deck,
but I doubt anyone will try this Nidoking with 4
Nidoqueen RR's since Nidoqueen has so many other
partners that are much more powerful and popular.
However, you should never forget the Golden Rule:
Nidoking = AWESOME!
I have tried not to let my bias show through, but I do
believe that this Nidoking would have been viable if
Nidoqueen MT was still in the playable pool. That, and
Nidoking has a natural aura of power and majesty which
demands respect, obedience and will smack you into 3
separate dimensions if you so much as sneeze in the
Modified: 3 (High HP and synergy with Nidoqueen RR, but
it is ruined by an attack that should deal 40 more
damage and/or have a stronger auto-poison)
Limited: 3 (the Nidoqueen in this set is great in
Limited, so if you pull both add a point to the score)