You know, it’s been quite a while since we saw
Shaymin in Land
Forme make it on to a card.
The last time was way back in Platinum, I believe.
Shaymin UL was a big card
last format, and the EX version has seen some play since
its release, but personally I prefer the cute hedgehog
thing over the annoyingly bratty Sky
Forme that featured on those
cards (see the Giratina
movie for details on that).
This Shaymin is an
unevolving Basic with 70 HP.
Not huge, but decent enough for what it is. You would
have to be fairly unlucky to see it KO’d on the first
turn, though it’s not beyond the realms of possibility (Tornadus-EX/DCE/Stadium/PlusPower,
for example). The Fire Weakness is not an issue right
now (though obviously that’s subject to change), but I’m
a bit disappointed to see no Resistance. I don’t usually
complain about this (it’s pretty routine), but
Shaymin normally does better
than that, with Fighting Resistance for the Sky
Forme and Water for the Land
Forme. The retreat cost of
one seems reasonable but, as we shall see, it’s that
which will effectively prevent the card from seeing
first attack is Call for Family, costing
just one Energy of any Colour.
We have all seen this many times before in various
versions and usually it’s pretty good. In this case it
allows you to search your deck for
two Basic Pokémon and put them on your Bench.
It’s a great way to start if you are playing a deck that
likes to set up multiple Basics quickly, especially as
this format lacks other kinds of multiple Basic search (eg:
Pokémon Collector, Roseanne’s Research, Call Energy).
The problem is that we already have a Pokémon which can
do this job, and it’s a bit better than
Emolga DRX has the same HP,
the same attack, a useful Fighting Resistance and,
retreat. Now you might think this doesn’t matter:
both Pokémon need an Energy
to use Call for Family, so what does it matter if
Shaymin has to discard it
when retreating? Well, the first time, it probably
doesn’t matter (unless you want to conserve it for
Energy Switch), but never underestimate the benefits of
having a free retreater to act as a ‘pivot’ Pokémon . .
. going up after a KO and then switching out for free
when you are ready to attack. Of course you could always
use Skyarrow Bridge with
Shaymin, but the point is
that with Emolga, you don’t
So, that one apparently minor, but oh-so-important
difference will be enough to keep
Shaymin out of decks. It
does have a
second attack, Leaf Drain, but it’s really not worth the
effort: two Grass Energy for 30 damage and 30 heal. Even
here Emolga outshines it by
being able to do 20 for one Energy.
Sorry Shaymin, you are
slightly worse than something we already have and that
means no play for you.
Modified: 2.5 (the tl;dr
for this review is: just play
Limited: 4.25 (grab your Basics, thin your deck: it’s
the way to go in limited)
Jebulous Maryland Player
Shaymin is a Basic Grass Pokemon with 70 HP. It is
weak to Fire and has a retreat cost of 1. It is
searchable by Level Ball.
'Call for Family' costs 1 energy, searches your deck for
2 Basic Pokemon, and puts them on your Bench. This kind
of attack is great for setting up. Emolga and Lapras
(and loosely Foongus) have similar attacks. With
Catcher in the mix, it's almost impossible to set up
Stage 1s or 2s without throwing 2 of the Basics down on
1 turn (and hope your opponent can't knock out both in
the same turn).
'Leaf Drain' costs 2 Grass and does 30. If you flip
heads, it heals 30. The effect is not good at all and
the damage output is a little low for having to have 2
Where this card falls short is the retreat cost. Emolga
is the same HP and attack cost, but has a free retreat.
You have to understand how good that is. Set up with
Emolga, they Catcher KO one of your Bench, then you
bring Emolga back up. This allows you the option to
retreat (for free) or do another 'Call for Family'.
More options with Emolga (especially now since it has a
Combos With: ...