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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

Plasma Energy  

- Plasma Storm

Date Reviewed:
February 19, 2013

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.33
Limited: 4.00

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

Plasma Energy 

The release of a new Special Energy card is usually something to get excited about. Just look at the spectacular cards we have received in the past – Double Rainbow, Scramble, Call and many more. Some have been format-changing, some have been downright rubbish (*looks at Bounce Energy*), but they have all at least been interesting. 

When you look at Plasma Energy . . . there is a bit of a sense of disappointment as there is nothing on the card itself that promises anything: it is a Special Energy, it is a Team Plasma card, and it provides one Colourless Energy. That’s it. It doesn’t become a Rainbow or a DCE when attached to a Team Plasma Pokémon or anything like that it’s just . . . a simple Colourless Energy. So what’s the big deal? 

As you will probably have guessed, the things that make Plasma Energy good are the other cards that work with it. This is where it starts to get interesting. With Colress Machine, you can accelerate Plasma Energy from you deck to your Plasma Pokémon. With Plasma Frigate, you can remove the Weakness from any Pokémon that has a Plasma Energy attached. As far as Pokémon are concerned, we are pretty limited after only one set, but already we have Lugia-EX (which needs Plasma Energy to attack) and Articuno-EX (which needs it to inflict auto Paralysis). Infernape PLS and Snorlax PLS would also find the Colress Machine/Plasma engine invaluable for Energy acceleration. 

As we see more and more Plasma Pokémon, so we will see more and more of this card. I have no doubt that Pokémon will succeed in making Plasma a competitive new mechanic, and this card plus Colress Machine is its Energy acceleration . . . think of how good Energy Gain was for SP decks, and you’ll get the idea. 

Rating 

Modified: 3.5 and rising (will be a key component of future Plasma decks)

Limited: 4 (assuming you pull the Pokémon and Trainers to use it) 


Otaku

If you are reading this, I forgot to write an introduction.

 

Stats

Plasma Energy is a Special Energy card, so unlike basic Energy cards it is still restricted to four copies in your deck.  The symbol in the upper right hand tells you that the default Energy value for the card (such as when it is not in play) is (C).  There is also a handy blue border, small reminder label in upper-right-hand corner of the card art labeled “Team Plasma”, and Team Plasma’s crest in the background behind the effect text to remind you this is a Team Plasma card in three different ways.

 

Effects

Plasma Energy states that it provides… (C) Energy.  That is all.  Pretty underwhelming, but this card is meant to act as a trigger and a resource.

 

Usage

Like Retro Energy (EX: Legend Maker 82/92), this card is all about what it can trigger or be targeted by.  Perhaps the most important is Colress Machine.  You can read up on that card here, as it was our number five choice for the Top 10 Promising Picks of Plasma Storm.  The short version is that it allows you to select one of your Team Plasma affiliated Pokémon in play, search your deck for a Plasma Energy, and attach it to said Pokémon; that’s very good.  All Team Plasma Pokémon released so far have at least one (C) Energy in their attack costs.

 

The other Trainer that requires it to have any significant effect is Plasma Frigate (BW: Plasma Storm 124/135).  While you could theoretically run it just to discard other Stadiums, which would be a waste; its effect states that a Pokémon with a Plasma Energy attached has no Weakness.  It works for all Pokémon; Benched Pokémon don’t apply Weakness or Resistance anyway, but it is significant to know it works for your opponent as well if they meet the criteria, and it works for both Team Plasma Pokémon and those that are not!  You can click here for more our review of this card… provided you are reading this after the review of Plasma Frigate has been posted.

 

Three Pokémon released so far have attacks that have a bonus effect when Plasma Energy is attached to them; the Team Plasma aligned versions of the Legendary Bird Trio!  All three are Pokémon-EX with 170 HP with Fighting Resistance, a Retreat score of one, and two attacks.  Articuno EX (BW: Plasma Storm 25/135, 132/135) is a Water-Type with Metal-Weakness.  For (WCC) it hits for 60 plus 10 points of damage to each of your opponent’s Benched Pokémon.  For (WWCC) it hits for 80, and if you have a Plasma Energy attached, scores Paralysis.

 

Moltres EX (BW: Plasma Storm 14/135) is a Fire-Type with Water Weakness.  Its first attack for (RC) does 30 points of damage and has a mandatory coin toss; get heads and you discard an Energy attached to the Defending Pokémon.  Zapdos (BW: Plasma Storm /135) is a Lightning-Weak Lightning-Type and for (LC) it also does 30 with a coin flip dependent effect; this time “heads” prevents all effects of attacks done, including damage, to itself.  For (RRCC) or (LLCC), Moltres EX and Zapdos EX (respectively) have differently named attacks that do the same thing; 80 points of damage with an extra 40 (total 120) if the attacking Pokémon in question has at least one Plasma Energy attached to it.

 

All three have promise, but also face some big hurdles, the biggest being most support you would consider running with them has been proven with other Pokémon, Pokémon that have performed so well it is unlikely the preceding three could best for deck space.  I have some ideas for some very odd builds, but due to circumstances I have zero play testing with these decks, and being brutally honest the odds are low that my concepts would be overly strong if they are even functional.

 

Lugia EX (BW: Plasma Storm 108/135, 134/135) flat out requires Plasma Energy to attack, and you can read about it here as it was our number two pick on our recent list.  It flat out requires you discard a Plasma Energy to use its only attack, and its Ability only works with its attack, so you will not see Lugia EX without Plasma Energy.  Unfortunately, Lugia EX may not be convenient enough for the relationship to flow in the opposite direction; I am sure many decks can run Plasma Energy but struggle to support Lugia EX.

 

Lastly for the Team Plasma Family of cards, there are two sources of additional draw power that Plasma Energy can help fuel. Skarmory (BW: Plasma Storm 87/135) and Team Plasma Grunt (BW: Plasma Storm 125/135) can draw you three and four cards, respectively.  Unfortunately both require you discard a Team Plasma card to do so.  The former (Skarmory) is a Basic, Metal-Type Pokémon with 90 HP, Fire Weakness, Psychic Resistance, and a Retreat of (C), and the draw is its first attack with an Energy cost of (C).  Its second attack for (MMC) does 40 while reducing the damage it takes by 20.  The latter (Team Plasma Grunt) is a Supporter… so both cards are hard pressed to justify running, let alone discarding a hard to reclaim Team Plasma card like this for such a small return.

 

Speaking of getting Plasma Energy back, right now the only non-attack based option (and you shouldn’t even consider the attack based options) comes in the form of Recycle.  An old Item first printed in Fossil and reprinted in BW: Emerging Powers, it is a “tails fails” effect that when it does work allows you to select a card and put it on top of your deck (where you could target it with Colress Machine, for the record).  Personally, I don’t think any deck uses Plasma Energy well enough to justify it, and even then making room for it is difficult.

 

Plasma Energy is a must run for any deck running an adequate amount of Plasma Pokémon or that desperately need to attempt to cover Weakness with Plasma Frigate, at least in Modified.  In Unlimited, it likely isn’t worth running at all, though again I am still grasping at straws when it comes to this format so feel free to test and find out if I am wrong.  Given the kind of speedy decks that win first turn and the challenge of even winning with a traditional donk deck, I am skeptical.

 

For Limited play, only run it if you get one of the many cards that gets an extra effect from it.  Colress Machine, Plasma Frigate, and Team Plasma Grunt are all Uncommons, and remember Colress Machine needs a Team Plasma Pokémon in play to target as well.  Skarmory is a Normal Rare, Articuno EX, Lugia EX, Moltres EX, and Zapdos EX are all “Rare Holo EX”, and only Articuno EX and Lugia EX are available as Full Art cards this set.  I’ve heard Full Arts termed Super Rare Holo cards, though I thought that would apply to the Rare Holo EX rarity (which are a step below), making them really “Ultra Rare” cards.

 

So… don’t expect to be able to use it in Limited, but enjoy it if you can.

 

Ratings

 

Unlimited: 1.5/5

 

Modified: 3/5

 

Limited: 3/5

 

 

Summary

This is another example of a card ill-suited to our scoring system.  It is exactly as good as it is meant to be, because it exists to simply be a target of or trigger for effects.  Some of those are quite good, but I don’t want to give too much credit here since it really belongs to those other cards, like Colress Machine.  So for now, it scores as above since it isn’t really good or bad; it simply is.

 

This did not make my list.  I thought it might be worth reviewing alongside Colress Machine, Plasma Frigate, etc. as a bonus, or even saving it for April Fool’s Day, since had we reviewed more of the above cards before… this CotD would have lost the bulk of its material.

virusyosh

Hello once again, Pojo readers! Today we're reviewing a card that doesn't do a whole lot on its own, but will likely have a key role in many upcoming decks. Today's Card of the Day is Plasma Energy from Plasma Storm.
 
Plasma Energy is a Special Energy card, meaning that you can only have four copies of it in a deck. Unlike most other Special Energy cards, Plasma Energy provides only a single, Colorless Energy, meaning that it won't go a long way for fulfilling Energy requirements (like Double Colorless) or fixing Energy types (like the Blends). However, like React Energy from several years ago, Plasma Energy's strength is in cards that reference it, such as Colress Machine or Lugia-EX. Colress Machine allows for fast Energy acceleration, and Plasma Energy is required for many secondary effects of attacks on Team Plasma Pokemon. Finally, since Plasma Energy is a Team Plasma card, it can also be used as a discard for Team Plasma Grunt, for example. All in all, there's not a whole lot to say about Plasma Energy, but it will likely be an important card in the game while Team Plasma is around, so be sure to look around for it.
 
Modified: 3.5/5 Plasma Energy is one of those cards where if your deck needs it, you'll run four, and if not, you probably won't run any. As such, Plasma Energy will work incredibly well in Plasma builds utilizing Colress Machine. Of course, be sure to look out for Crushing Hammer and (especially) Enhanced Hammer, as they can make your life very difficult!
 
Limited: 5/5 Plasma Storm Limited is full of Team Plasma Pokemon, and many of them need Plasma Energy for their effects, so this card is a very effective inclusion in almost all builds in Limited.


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