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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day

 

Muk Lv. 49

Platinum

Date Reviewed: March 8, 2011

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 2.08
Limited: 3.25

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

Muk (Platinum)

Today’s review Pokémon is one of those busy cards with a lot going on. All of that text must mean there is something good about this card? Right?

Muk PL has a solid (for a Stage 1) 100 HP, Psychic Weakness (but it’s only a +20), and a horrible Retreat cost of three, so switching cards are pretty much obligatory. It also has an odd PokeBody, Sludge Cell, which allows you to remove two damage counters between turns if he is affected by a Special Condition. In effect, this gives him a net healing ability of one counter per turn if he is Poisoned: nice, but . . . this is a format where OHKOs are the norm on anything that is not spectacularly big and tanky.

For one Psychic and one Colourless Energy you get Strange Poison: an attack that does an underwhelming 30 damage but does give you a coin flip: heads and you Poison your opponent’s Pokémon; tails and Muk takes the Poison (which triggers the Body). You can see the synergy here, but it doesn’t really amount to much. You are either getting 40 damage for two Energy (meh), or using Muk’s minor healing ability.

At least there is some more synergy going on with the second attack, Strange Sludge. That’s just as well because with a cost of [P][P][C], it’s very expensive and slow (no Double Colourless acceleration for you!). The base damage of 50 is atrocious for the cost, but if Muk is Poisoned, you hit for an extra 20 and inflict Confusion (the lamest of all the Status Conditions).

There are two problems with the card really. Firstly, you need a reliable way of Poisoning Muk to get any benefit from his attacks and Body. Two Energy coin flip attacks are just not reliable or fast enough to be worthwhile, forcing you to run some support in the form of Skuntank G and a Stadium. Secondly, even if you do pull off the self-poison strategy, the rewards are very mediocre: a Stage 1 that hits for 70 + Confusion for the steep cost of three Energy. It just isn’t enough to make Muk a viable candidate for competitive play.

If you like the self-Poison strategy, try something simpler, faster, and more effective in the form of Seviper CL. That’s my advice.

Rating

Modified: 1.5 (slow, and a lot of effort for an underwhelming reward)

conical 3/8/11: Muk(Platinum)
 
It's still Poison week, so it seems sort of fitting to review Muk, given that he is, you know, made of toxic sludge.
 
Muk is weird, in that unlike other poison-based Pokemon, Muk would actually rather poison itself rather than the opponent. This is due to the Body, which heals it some when affected by a Condition. It can do so via Strange Poison, which can poison Muk on a coin flip. Or, you could use Skuntank G to poison both active Pokemon without relying on a coin flip. Sadly, the poison still takes effect, and reduces the healing via Sludge Cell, making it a worse Nidoqueen RR in competitive play. Strange Sludge does more damage if Muk is Poisoned, and confuses the target, but that's only 70 damage for a 3 energy attack that can't be sped up with Double Colorless Energy. I'll give Muk props for creativity with poison, but that's about it.
 
Modified: 2.25/5
Limited: 2.75/5 (Given some Stadiums and the common Skuntank G, this could be kind of annoying.)
Combos With: Skuntank G

Otaku

Our second card this week is Muk Lv.49, released back in Platinum. Like all recent video game Poison-Type Pokémon, in the TCG it is represented as being a Psychic Type. As I stated yesterday (and will repeat the next few days) this is a solid Type to be right now merely from Type matching: you see a decent amount of Psychic Weakness in this format. Being a Stage 1 Pokémon is a drag, since we have a lot of strong, Basic Pokémon that can fake Evolving by Leveling Up, and Stage 2 Pokémon that can abuse the heck out of Rare Candy, giving Stage 1 Pokémon very little of an advantage over either of them. Muk Evolves from Grimer, and there are only two Modified legal options: one from Platinum and one from Undaunted. Both are Psychic, Basic Pokémon with 60 HP and a hefty Retreat Cost of two. The older version from Platinum enjoys a superior Psychic +10 Weakness, while the Undaunted version reverted back to the standard damage doubling Weakness. The Platinum version also can attack for no Energy, and that attack searches your deck for another Grimer and Benches it. The Retreat Cost and this attack make it the superior choice: you really don’t want to have to attack with Grimer as it is there to Evolve into Muk, and the other attacks are a bit pricey for what they do, which is probably very little before being KO’d.

Muk has a solid 100 HP for a Stage 1 Pokémon. This isn’t enough to be a real advantage, but at least it isn’t starting out with a deficit like yesterday’s Toxicroak. Psychic Weakness +20 is actually a pretty tame Weakness: to give you an idea Uxie Lv.X doesn’t OHKO it! No Resistance is disappointing but common. Three Energy to retreat is high, but expected; given the Grimer both require two Energy we should probably be grateful they only upped the cost by one.

Muk has a Poké-Body and two attacks; somewhat impressive for an Uncommon card. The Poké-Body, Sludge Cell, removes two damage counters from Muk between turns if it is afflicted by a Special Condition. So when Poisoned, Muk nets one damage counter removed. Even if you fail both Burn checks, you’d break even. Any Burn Check you make and the remaining Special Conditions essentially grant a free Potion between turns. I can’t find a ruling for order resolution, except one stating that it is the controller’s choice whether to remove two damage counters and then place one for Poison, or place one for Poison then remove two for the Poké-Body. As you can tell, it isn’t much of an issue since decks don’t rely on Special Conditions or expect them to last. I like this Poké-Body and find it creative and somewhat useful… but this format makes Special Conditions almost pointless.

The attacks tie into the combo. For (PC), you get Strange Poison. It does 30 points of damage and gives you a coin toss: “heads” Poisons the Defending Pokémon, and “tails” Poisons Muk, which Muk actually likes. It really likes it, since the second attack is Strange Sludge and for (PPC) it does 50 damage, but an extra 20 and automatic Confusion if Muk is Poisoned. If both attacks could ditch one Psychic Energy Requirement for another Colorless one, this could be a really fun deck. It still might be, but it will really have to work at it. Running Vileplume to deny Trainers is again the obvious combo. There is also another Muk you could run with it which we will review tomorrow.

In Limited play, you’ll find this card great so long as you can afford to run enough Psychic Energy to reliably power it up. The “okay” HP is actually good here, the damage output goes from questionable to good, and most importantly Special Conditions and healing are crazy good. Muk will be quite the beast once it gets powered and can Poison itself.

Ratings

Modified: 2.5/5

Limited: 3.5/5

virusyosh

Welcome back, Pojo viewers! Today we are continuing Pick Your Poison Week with everyone's favorite large pile of sludge, Muk. Today's particular Muk is from Platinum.

Muk is a Stage 1 Psychic Pokemon. Psychics like the pixies and Gengar are commonly seen, but outside of those and a few other supporting roles, not much is really that common. 100 HP is decent for a Stage 1, meaning that it should be able to take at least two hits in our Modified metagame, while being sufficiently high for use in Limited. Psychic Weakness definitely hurts, but considering it's only +20, it could be much worse. No Resistance is unfortunate, as is a huge Retreat Cost of 3. Make sure to use Warp Point or Warp Energy to get Muk to the bench.

Muk has a Poke-Body and two attacks, which seem to work in synergy with one another. The Body, Sludge Cell, removes two damage counters from Muk in between turns if Muk is affected by a Special Condition. This works very well with Skuntank G and a Stadium card in play, as Muk will be taking 10 damage and removing 20 between turns, which is a net gain of 10 damage healed. Although a net gain of 10 HP healed each turn may not seem like a lot, when the condition is easily met, every little bit helps.

Muk's first attack, Strange Poison, also works in concert with Sludge Cell. The attack deals 30 damage for [PC], Poisoning the opponent if you flip heads and Poisoning yourself if you flip tails. While not terrible, if the aim is to poison yourself, you are probably better off going with the combo given above. However, this attack can be decent if your opponent is sufficiently weakened, or you don't have enough energy to use the next attack.

Strange Sludge, Muk's second attack, starts off at 50 damage for [PPC], but deals 20 more damage and Confuses the Defending Pokemon if Muk is Poisoned. This attack was clearly made to work in conjunction with Strange Poison and Sludge Cell, but also works perfectly with Skuntank G. While 70 damage and auto-Confusion is good, it's probably too slow to work in Modified. In Limited, however, Muk can be quite a good Pokemon if you pull a lot of Psychic.

Modified: 2/5 It's very interesting, but too slow for the format. Three energy for 70 damage just doesn't cut it anymore.

Limited: 3.25/5 Not bad at all, especially because this is a slower format. However, keep in mind that this is also the set in which most of the SP engine was released, so look out for your opponent's SP Pokemon.

Combos With: Skuntank G


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