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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day

 

Throw #61

Black & White

Date Reviewed: June 16, 2011

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 2.13
Limited: 3.87

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


Baby Mario
2010 UK National
Seniors
Champion

Throh #61/114 (Black and White)

We finish the week by looking at the two martial arts Pokémon from Black and White. Having martial arts Pokémon is cool I guess (though we’ve been down this road before with Hariyama and the Hitmons), I just wish they had come up with better names. I mean, Judo is all about holds and throws so the Judo Pokémon is called . . . Throh. Yep, moving on . . .

Throh definitely has some things going for him as a Pokémon card. He’s an unevolving Basic (won’t take up much deckspace) with a more than respectable 100 HP. Psychic Weakness is probably one of the better ones to have right now. I racked my brains to see if I could think of any good psychic decks in HGSS-MD and all I could come up with was Muk UD/Vileplume and some kind of Mew Prime toolbox that didn’t just rely on Lost Zoning Pokémon with Gengar Prime. The Retreat cost of three is horrible however you look at it, but then Switch is fast becoming a staple card.

If you want a bit of minor disruption, then Throh’s first attack, Circle Throw, will provide it for [F][C]. It does 30 damage and forces your opponent to switch out their active. Unfortunately, they get to choose the Pokémon they switch out for, so expect this to backfire sometimes as your opponent takes the opportunity to retreat their starter for free and bring up a main attacker. On the other hand, if your opponent has nothing ready to go, it could cause them some inconvenience. Storm Throw (anyone see a theme here?) is a decent second attack, doing 80 damage for the acceptable cost of [F][F][C]. A nice bonus is that it hits through Resistance which can come in handy when facing playable cards like Yanmega Prime, Mandibuzz, and Jumpluff.

Throh is certainly not a bad card: it has decent HP, fairly-costed attacks, and even a reasonable damage output. The trouble is that it’s not quite enough to build a deck around especially because it’s an unevolving Basic and leaves you with nowhere to go after that. Even as a tech, it’s somewhat slow and needs more turns of Energy attachment than you would like to invest in it. Maybe I’m missing something, but for me, this falls somewhat short of competitive playability.

Rating

Modified (HGSS-on): 2.25 (a real nearly card: slightly cheaper attacks might have made it more viable)

Limited: 3.75 (easy to set up, hits pretty hard, and has good typing – very good in this format)


Otaku

Throh is a Basic Fighting Pokémon, which makes it easy to work into your deck and should usually provide favorable type matching: Fighting Weakness is quite common and while Fighting Resistance is usually one of the most common types of Resistance, Resistance as a whole seems to be becoming less and less common. 100 HP is great for a Basic Pokémon, even one that can’t Evolve. Psychic Weakness and no Resistance aren’t so hot, and even with the aforementioned great HP. Fortunately Psychic Pokémon are not often brute force attackers, so besides some very common support that is soon to rotate out (Uxie Lv.X) you won’t have to worry as much. Likewise Resistance is only a matter of missed opportunity: plenty of cards lack it so it isn’t really putting Throh at a disadvantage. The three Energy needed to Retreat does hurt, though: you’ll probably only want to run this in a deck packing retreat aids or simply where it can go down fighting.

Throh has two attacks: Circle Throw and Storm Throw. Circle Throw requires (FC) and hits for 30, plus forces your opponent to change out the Defending Pokémon. Your opponent does get to choose, so you its more irritating than devastating, but against certain decks or with the right support, it can pose a problem for your opponent. Storm Throw just brings some nice damage at 80 points for (FFC) and ignoring Resistance. One hit of this will put the hurt on most Pokémon, and two hits should KO all but the biggest or those with enhanced protection other than Resistance. Both attacks give you a solid return for their Energy being invested, even factoring in that a Basic Pokémon that can’t Evolve needs to be quite potent to compete with Evolutions.

So this card is pretty good, right? Unfortunately, not really: I’d say that right now it is less than the sum of its parts. The big problem comes in speed: if you open with this right now, you could attach a Call Energy and not waste your first turn. As soon as the format rotates, that option is gone. The attacks I just went over suffer, because that “dead” turn drops the average-damage-per-turn pretty low: for an end investment of three Energy (and Energy attachments) Throh is hitting for under 40 points of damage per turn on average. Both the attacks are solid, it’s just this build on Throh doesn’t let it attack right away nor survive long enough to offset that dead turn. Speeding it up with extra Energy attachments seems overkill for what is supposed to be space saver opener/closer. Plus when Pokémon Catcher finally hits the west, Circle Throw becomes less important. Throh desperately needed its first attack to cost (CC) and his second to cost (FCC). Had that been the case, this would have been the Fighting Pokémon to splash into a mostly or even all non-Fighting deck. The second attack could have even gotten away with hitting for a little less damage, all because you could have use Double Colorless Energy to Circle Throw first turn and followed with Storm Throw on your second turn. Alternatively, this pairing on a great Stage 1 wouldn’t have been so bad because first turn you’d have been stuck as the Basic of the Evolution line anyway: as long as at least one version of a hypothetical Basic Pokémon to our hypothetical Stage 1 had a decent attack, then these two attacks would have worked fairly well. Quite well if this hypothetical Stage 1 had better stats/damage output than Throh does.

That’s enough create-a-card though. As is, Throh is ill equipped for Unlimited, a little to slow for either Modified format, and a dream in Limited play where a being a big basic with Bench disruption and the ability to ignore Resistance is amazing. Only real reason not to run it is you can’t afford to run enough Fighting Energy.


Ratings

Unlimited: 1/5


Modified (MD-On): 2/5

Modified (HGSS-On): 2.5/5

Limited: 4/5

Summary

Throh is quite close to being a good card, but the niche he is aiming for isn’t horseshoes or hand grenades, so close doesn’t count. A little too slow or a little too weak (but not both) for most practical uses, I wouldn’t trade all of yours away yet (let alone use them as coasters, as I’ve actually seen people do with their “unplayable spares”). He’s really just the right card or two away from being useful.

Check out my auctions on eBay here. Pojo is in no way responsible for any transactions, and merely lets me link to the auction in my reviews.

Mad Mattezhion
 Professor Bathurst League Australia
Throh (Black & White)
 
This is the big, red, judo loving tank from the Unova region, imaginatively named Throh. This Poke'mon looks like it received a severe beating with the ugly stick but can it be a beatstick in return?
 
Throh is a Fighting type non-evolving Basic with 100 HP, Psychic weakness, a retreat cost of 3 and two attacks.
 
That HP is respectable and the weakness probably won't be a problem any time soon (the death of Gengar SF, Nidoqueen RR and the pixies means that Psychic Weakness is no longer a liability). The retreat cost is not unexpected but it is still unpayable so Switch is a must. Being a Basic is great because you can use Throh aggressively to get the first hit in, but is speed really a strong point for tanks?
 
The attacks say that it isn't. Circle Throw is the first attack and deals 30 damage followed by a forced switch of the Defending Poke'mon (your opponent chooses the replacement). The cost is [f][c] so while the effect is useful, you have to attach manually 2 energy before you can attack, leaving you vulnerable to attacks on the dead turn.
 
The same problem persists with the second attack, Storm Throw. For [f][f][c] you deal 80 damage and ignore resistance, which is great because you have a guaranteed 2HKO on everything in the format, with the exception of Armourott. The downside is you have to spend 3 turns attaching the necessary energy which gives your opponent plently of time to deal the 100 damage necessary to knock Throh out.
 
Throh has great stats and the attacks could be workable, but only if you can get some energy accelration in place (impossible in the current card pool). Throh doesn't have the truly broken HP necessary to be a main attacker and the lack of speed stops it being a fast opener/closer. Whilever Donphan Prime is around to compete, this card will come off second best.
 
Modified: 2 (it could fill the same niche as Alomomola BW, but only if Fighting types get some energy acceleration)
 
Limited: 3.25 (it's a big Basic which can ignore resistance but it is energy hungry and you'll lose against the dragon twins if you don't get the first hit in)
 
Combos with: energy acceleration
 


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