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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day

 

Vileplume #24/90

HS Undaunted

Date Reviewed:
September 13, 2010

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.50
Limited: 2.50

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

Vileplume (Undaunted) 

Hi, and welcome to a couple of short weeks of card reviews here on Pojo’s CotD while Pojo takes a well-earned break.  

Anyway, we kick off this week with the most anticipated card of the Undaunted set. Sure, there are a few other cards that work as tricky techs in existing decks, but today’s card is the only one that really offers up the possibility of a new competitive archetype. 

A quick look at the card is enough to tell you that what Vileplume has to offer is nothing to do with its mediocre stats (120 HP, Fire Weakness and a Retreat cost of two), or its very average Dazzling Pollen attack ([G][G][C] for 70 damage or 50 and Confusion, depending on a coin flip). To find out why this card is getting so much attention, we need to look at that PokeBody: Allergy Flower. 

Almost from the beginning of the TCG, Vileplume has often had Trainer locking abilities (see Dark Vileplume and Vileplume EX for details), and you can clearly see Vileplume’s family history in Allergy Flower. This Body stops both players from using Trainers, and it works from the Bench. Obviously, you build your deck to minimise the disruption to your strategy. You can’t use Rare Candy when Vilplume is out, so Spiritomb AR (which also locks Trainers!) and Broken Time-Space are your friends, as are draw/hand refresh Supporters: Copycat can really excel in a Vileplume deck as your opponent is likely to have a large hand full of Trainers that they can’t play. 

While your deck should be built to cope without Trainers, your opponent might not be so lucky. SP decks will be denied access to their crucial cards (Poke Turn, Energy Gain, Power Spray), while other Stage 2 decks won’t be able to evolve with Candy. Basically, you aim to slow your opponent down and leave them with a bunch of unplayable cards . . . but how can you then take most advantage of that situation? 

Certainly not with Vileplume itself and its sub-par attack, but there are some good options around. The most straightforward is probably Bellossom LA: it’s from the same evolution line as Vileplume so it takes up less deck space, and it has an attack that can take good advantage of its benched cousins. For the low cost of [G][C] Blend Pollen does 40 damage + 20 more for each Vileplume or Bellossom in play, giving you a total damage of 60-120 per turn plus a flip for Burn. That is pretty good for the cost and with Trainer lock slowing the game down, such a set up is not impossible. The most popular choice as a partner for Vileplume seems to be Gengar SF though. With Gastly SF adding to your Trainer hate, and Poltergeist able to hit for huge damage if your opponent is stuck with a hand full of Trainers, it would seem to be an obvious (and good) combination.

Before you go thinking that this will be the deck to dominate the upcoming Battle Roads, you should be aware that there are some commonly played cards which are very effective counters for  Vileplume. The ever-popular Dialga G LV X will shut off the body completely, while Luxray GL LV X, Blaziken FB, and Pokémon Reversal are all capable of dragging it out and either sniping round it, or just KOing it outright with something like Uxie LV X or Drifblim UD. Nevertheless, a wise player will bear Vileplume in mind when deckbuilding and find room for some more Supporters themselves, or maybe use a card like Chatot MD to refresh a hand full of useless Trainers. 

Expect this card to have a big impact in the near future, even if it won’t always win. 

Rating 

Modified: 3.5 (a new archtype, but not an invincible one by any means)

Limited: 1.5 (Trainers are so rare here that locking them with a Stage 2 is a waste of effort) 

Combos with . . .

Spiritomb AR
Gengar SF
Bellossom LA
Copycat 

virusyosh

Welcome back, Pojo readers! Today we're reviewing what was probably one of the most hyped cards from the HS Undaunted expansion. Today's Card of the Day is Vileplume.

Vileplume is a Stage 2 Grass Pokemon. Grass Pokemon see a fair amount of play in the current metagame, as Jumpluff is a fairly common deck and you will occasionally run into a Scizor/Cherrim build. Most Grass Pokemon are also commonly played due to their really good effects as support Pokemon, and Vileplume is no exception. Vileplume has 120 HP, which is average for a Stage 2. Psychic Weakness is interesting: It isn't Fire, so Vileplume is relatively safe from Charizard and Blaziken FB, however Vileplume does need to watch for Mewtwo Lv. X and the Pixies in a random AMU deck. No Resistance is unfortunate, and a Retreat Cost of 2 is average: Payable for sure, but since Vileplume is generally a bench-sitter, you should probably use Switch or Warp Point or try to have it avoid the Active position to begin with.

Vileplume has a Poke-Body and a single attack. The Poke-Body, Allergy Flower, is Vileplume's major selling point. While Vileplume is in play, neither player can play Trainer cards from their hands. Probably the most notable thing about this power is that it also works while Vileplume is on the Bench, making it slightly more reliable than Spiritomb for consistent Trainer blocking. In fact, Vileplume has already been found in some Gengar builds to make Poltergeist do huge amounts of damage. Just be sure that you don't end up playing Vileplume when you aren't set up, because not being able to play Trainers will definitely affect you, too.

Vileplume's attack, Dazzling Pollen, does 50 damage for [GGC], but can deal 20 more if you flip heads and auto-confuses if you flip tails. The attack is a bit on the expensive side, so Vileplume should mostly be sitting on the bench.

Modified: 3.5/5 I think that Vileplume has a great place in the current metagame, and will eventually find its way into quite a few top builds. Trainer denial is ridiculous in any format, and with SP variants being so reliant on Trainers, Vileplume may end up being great against them. Being able to help Gengar do tons of damage is also a great thing as well.

Limited: 3/5 It's a Stage 2 and hard to get out, but the Trainer lock here is still great and Dazzling Pollen is a nice attack for Limited. If you get it out, you'll probably win.

Combos With: Gengar SF


Otaku

Name: Vileplume
Set/ID/Rarity:
HS – Undaunted 24/90 Rare
Type:
Grass
Stage 2:
Evolves from Gloom
HP:
120
Weakness:
Psychic
Resistance:
None
Retreat Cost:
CC

Poké-Body:
Allergy Flower
Each player can’t play any Trainer cards from his or her hand.

Attack: (GGC) Dazzling Pollen [50+]
Flip a coin.  If heads, this attack does 50 damage plus 20 more damage.  If tails, the Defending Pokémon is now Confused.

-------------------------------------------------

Ah, this reminds me of my lovely, lovely black rose! @}-

No, not that one… or that one… or them… or… wow there are way too many people, groups, and movements that use the name or term “black rose”.  Still, I will continue to use it to refer to Dark Vileplume.  With the abuse of Trainers, I was always fond a card that could shut them down.  Especially when we finally had all the support for it years later to build some fearsome decks running my all time favorite Pokémon, Snorlax. 

Today we look at Vileplume from HS – Undaunted.  A Stage 2 Grass Pokémon, it clocks in at a good 120 HP.  It has to cope with a double Weakness to Psychic Pokémon; it is good that they appealed to the (video game) Poison half of Vileplume for the Weakness, but a bit bad since Fire Weakness might actually be safer: I believe more Psychic Pokémon gain the ability to OHKO Vileplume than Fire Pokémon would.  The lack of Resistance is predictable and unfortunate as always, and a Retreat Cost of two Energy isn’t bad but is high enough you might want to pack some (non-Trainer) answers for it. 

The Poké-Body is what can make this card: shutting down all Trainers.  Unfortunately for Vileplume players this is the modern definition of Trainer that still makes things more complicated instead of simplifying: just learn from so many other games by designating “normal” Trainers as Normal Trainers.  Then effects like this could specify “all Trainers”, “Normal Trainers”, etc. as needed.  Even with the ability to play so many “used to be Trainer” cards, it is still a stinging blow to most decks: you only get one Supporter card per turn, Pokémon can only have a single Pokémon Tool equipped, etc. 

The attack, Dazzling Pollen, is fancy filler, I am afraid.  The triple Energy investment should yield at least 60 damage on a Stage 2 and instead, this merely has you flip a coin to decide if it is really 70 total damage or 50 with Confusion.  I can only surmise that the attack is intentionally weakened to compensate for an expected-to-be potent Poké-Body. 

As stated, the card won’t block things like Supporters so it can’t achieve a total lock on its own.  There are some cards you can run to remedy that, but all I found seemed to block Supporters via an attack and many times the attack also blocked Trainers!  Still, since many such Pokémon were Basic Pokémon with inexpensive attacks, this could be worth it.  Combined with building your own deck to utilize disruptive Supporters you may be able to leave your opponent with a hand of dead Trainers!  You might even want to risk the seemingly suicidal tactic of relying on Raticate from Arceus as your main opening attacker.  You’ll have to quickly evolve into it but for a single Energy, you then get to look at your opponent’s hand, discard a Supporter you find there, and use the effect.  This would still have to be an opening Pokémon or cleaner and not your deck’s main attacker: Raticate doesn’t do any damage with the attack and doesn’t look to have the staying power to rely on its second attack.  If you can block Trainers and Supporters, though, you should have ample time to set something else up to attack.  Perhaps a better alternative is to work very hard to create a deck that locks down something else (like Poké-Powers) so again, your opponent is relying on just a single Supporter each turn for most of their progress? 

I really would love to see how Unlimited play treats this card: many older players neglect to utilize Supporters in my personal experience.  Spoiled by all those old, powerful Trainers they forget that many Supporters offer unique opportunities no Trainers can quite match.  In Limited play, this might be a good pick if another set is being run alongside it: there just aren’t that many Trainers in this set to worry about, though at least inflicting Confusion is more useful. 

Ratings 

Modified: 3.5/5
Limited:
3/5
Combos With:
Psyduck (Platinum 87/127) 

I am still selling my former collectables on eBay.  I’ve had a lot of hobbies over the years, so at various times I’ll have comic books, manga, action figures, and video games on the auction block.  You can take a look at what’s up for bids here.  I usually add new stuff on Wednesdays and Saturdays.  Just a reminder, Pojo is in no way responsible for any transactions and was merely kind enough to let me mention the auctions here. ;)


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