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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

Zapdos #41

Next Destinies

Date Reviewed: March 30, 2012

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.25
Limited: 4.25

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: See Below

Baby Mario
2010 UK National
Seniors
Champion

Zapdos (Next Destinies)

The Kanto Legendary Birds . . . when were they last playable? Probably back when Ho-oh SW featured in that ‘Skittles’ deck that has some (pretty minor) success. Before that you need to go right back to the days of Zapdos ex decks like ZRE. Recently though, Legendaries seem to have become a lot more playable and powerful than they once were. The trend really started with the SP Pokémon (Dialga G and Palkia G), and has continued through the Unova Dragons right through to the lastest EX Pokémon like Mewtwo and Regigigas. Will Zapdos ND be part of this new wave of good Legendaries? Let’s take a look.

Zapdos is a Basic Pokémon with a nice enough HP of 120. Sadly, this puts him in-range of unboosted KOs from the likes of Zekrom and Reshiram. On the minus side, he is Weak to his own Type (bad at the moment, as Lightning decks dominate), and has a harsh Retreat cost of two. One huge positive is that Zapdos has Fighting Resistance. This is important because all playable Lightning Pokémon (Zekrom, Thundurus, Eelektrik) are Weak to Fighting: having Resistance opens up the possibility of Lightning decks being able to tech Zapdos against Fighting, without having to go off-Type.

Of course, that would be pointless if Zapdos’ attacks were terrible but fortunately they are pretty good. Yes they are expensive, but remember that he is most likely going to be run in an deck which features Eelektrik NV and its Energy accelerating Dynamotor Ability. Random Spark costs [L][C][C] and does 50 damage to any of your opponent’s Pokémon. If you can get it working fast enough, this is great for sniping Tynamos, Oddishes, Magnemites etc before they get a chance to evolve. It is also useful against Bench-sitters like Vileplume UD and Reuniclus BW. Yes, it will take 2-3 turns to KO them, but those decks tend to be incredibly slow anyway and if you can take out a Vileplume to buy yourself even one turn of Trainers . . . well, that can be game-winning.

Zapdos’ second attack, Thundering Hurricane (great name!), has potential too. For the huge cost of one Lightning and three Colourless Energy, you get to flip four coins and do 50 damage for each heads. Now I wouldn’t for a moment suggest relying on this as a main attacking strategy (not even with Fliptini), but at the same time it is capable of OHKOing every single Pokémon in the game . . . including any EX with Eviolite! If you are using Zapdos to tech against Fighting Pokémon like Donphan Prime and Terrakion, then, thanks to Resistance (and maybe your own Eviolite), you stand a very good chance of KOing them before they get Zapdos.

Not every player will want to fit a copy of this card into their Zekrom/Eelektrik deck, but it is certainly a valid tech option if you find that your list needs something to counter Trainer Lock, or Fighting Pokémon. Or maybe you just want a sniper with a huge risk/reward second attack. Either way, Zapdos has made an appearance in some successful Lightning decks during State Championships, and he’s well worth testing in yours.

Rating

Modified: 3.25 (cute tech for Lightning decks)

Limited: 4.25 (big Basic that can snipe for Prizes and take down anything if you get lucky)


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