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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

Sawsbuck #16

Emerging Powers

Date Reviewed: Sept. 20, 2011

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 1.37
Limited: 3.50

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

Baby Mario
2010 UK National
Seniors
Champion

Sawsbuck 16/98 (Emerging Powers)

I like the concept behind Sawsbuck and Deerling: Pokémon whose appearance changes subtly with the seasons. It was a really cool addition to the Black and White Pokémon games. Unfortunately, the Pokémon have yet to make any impact in the TCG. Let’s see if that is about to change.

Sawsbuck is a Stage 1 Grass Pokémon with 100 HP: all factors which substantially reduce his durability in the present format. The Water Weakness is a bonus (but not one that is likely to make a big difference), but the Retreat cost of two seems harsh. This is not a card that needs that kind of drawback.

Push Down, Sawsbuck’s first attack, does 30 damage for the cost a Double Colourless Energy. Not great, but it does have the effect of forcing your opponent to switch their active for another Pokémon of their choice. Although this mild disruption can be useful, it isn’t so attractive when you compare it to the effect of Pokémon Catcher (a Trainer where you choose the benched Pokemon), or even Muk UD’s Sludge Drag (where, again, you can choose). Take Down is probably even less appealing. The 60 damage for [G][C] is ok, but the 20 points of self damage really isn’t. Once again, we can find Pokémon that do similar damage for less cost, as well as being superior in other ways (Yanmega Prime with free Retreat, Donphan Prime with the ability to tank).

All of which leaves Sawsbuck as an outclassed, mediocre Pokémon. It would be foolish to run it in a competitive deck when there are so many better options.

Rating

Modified: 1.5 (yes there are worse cards out there . . . but so many better ones too)

Limited: 3.25 (cheap attacks, and the disruption is very useful in this format)

virusyosh

Greetings, Pojo viewers! Today we continue our reviews with yet another new card from Emerging Powers. Today's Card of the Day is Sawsbuck.

Sawsbuck, like many of the Pokemon we've reviewed recently, is a Stage 1 Grass Pokemon. Grass Pokemon aren't terribly common outside of Yanmega Prime and Vileplume. 100 HP is actually pretty good for a Stage 1, although the number is still a bit low for our format. Fire Weakness is as terrible as always, meaning that Sawsbuck won't survive against the likes of Reshiram, Typhlosion Prime, and Emboar. Likewise, Water Resistance can keep Beartic and Samurott at bay, at least for a little while. A Retreat Cost of 2 is surprisingly high, and you won't want to pay it very often unless you absolutely have to.

Sawsbuck has two attacks: Push Down and Take Down. Push Down deals 30 damage for two Colorless Energy, and forces your opponent to switch out. Not terrible, but this attack doesn't do that much damage for the cost, and while the switch out effect can be nice, it's probably just easier (and better) to use Pokemon Catcher. In Limited, this attack can be quite disruptive, just remember that your opponent gets to choose, so they can go to their heavy hitter that was benched and waiting to be powered up. Take Down deals a rather nice 60 damage for a Grass and a Colorless, but Sawsbuck deals 20 damage to itself in the process. Damaging yourself is never really a pleasant option (with some exceptions, like Zekrom), but the attack is serviceable in Limited. In Modified, Yanmega Prime outclasses Sawsbuck as a Stage 1 Grass-type, having more HP and dealing more damage for (usually) cheaper.

Modified: 1.25/5 Sawsbuck isn't useless, but it is badly outclassed by Yanmega Prime. Being a Grass-type is somewhat of a liability in this format, and unless you can do something really special, you won't see play. Sawsbuck doesn't make the cut in this regard.

Limited: 3.75/5 Sawsbuck is much better here. Grass overall is very strong in Emerging Powers, as Fire is very rare in the set and there are many good choices around which you can build a solid deck. Sawsbuck has a great HP score for the format, along with cheap attacks, Colorless Energy requirements, and decent damage output. You'll want to watch out for Take Down's self-damage, but aside from that, Sawsbuck is quite a solid choice in Limited.


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