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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

Top 10 Plasma Storm

#9 -
Klinglang 

- Plasma Storm

Date Reviewed:
February 5, 2013

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.80
Limited: 3.00

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

#9 Klinklang 

Our #9 card has generated a lot of talk in the build up to Plasma Storm’s release. Of course we already have successful Klinklang decks in the format (it won US Nationals after all), and here they get another toy to play with . . . one that perfectly fits the existing strategy of tanking any and all of the damage that can be thrown at it. 

Klinklang is a Stage 2 Metal Type Pokémon with a solid 140 HP. The Fire Weakness is not usually an issue (though that may change in response to this card), the Psychic Resistance is . . . ok I guess, and the Retreat cost of three at least makes it a target for Heavy Ball. It has a mediocre attack in Heavy Bullet: 70 damage for three Energy and a coin flip for 20 to a Benched Pokémon. None of that really matters of course because Klinklang’s job is to sit on the Bench and support its fellow Pokémon. 

It does this through the Plasma Steel Ability, which prevents all damage done to Metal Type Pokémon by your opponent’s Pokémon EX. It’s not hard to follow player’s thought processes as they saw the potential for a combo deck. With Klinklang PLS, you are invulnerable to attacks from EX Pokémon (the most common and effective strike force in the game). Combine that with Shift Gear Klinklang BLW and Max Potion and you can heal off any damage you might take from non-EX attackers. There is even a solution to non-EX Fire Pokémon being used to counter this deck: the new Plasma Frigate Stadium eliminates Weakness for any Pokémon with Plasma Energy attached. Ok, so the choice of Metal-Type attackers to use in the deck isn’t spectacular (Cobalion NVI and Cobalion-EX, basically), but they are good enough to get the job done and when you are effectively immune to everything, who cares, right? 

What I hope that last paragraph makes clear though is that you need a lot of combo pieces to reach that state of blissful invulnerability. Without Plasma Frigate, tech Fire Pokémon like V-create Victini or Moltres NEX can run through your deck, or at least take out the Klinklangs and wreck your defences. Without Klinklang BW, you can’t heal off damage from non-EX decks. Without Klingklang PLS, your whole strategy falls apart against EX decks: your attackers aren’t good enough to trade blows with the likes of Keldeo and Rayquaza. Against Garbodor decks that shut off all the Abilities, you are in real trouble. In theory, if this deck sets up its Stage 2 Pokémon in time it is incredibly strong and will almost certainly win against any deck that isn’t thoroughly prepared for the match up. In practice, if one of the combo pieces fails to emerge, or if the deck has its set up blitzed by a speed orientated list, then it will struggle. 

There is a lot of potential here, but the deck will need to be built and played very carefully in order to realise it. I expect it will get a fair amount of play though, so I advise everyone to test the match up and make sure they have some sound answers to the Klinklang combo. 

Rating 

Modified: 3.75 (can you imagine what the mirror match will be like? *Shudders*)

Limited: 1.5 (Ability is worthless and attack is poor) 

virusyosh

Greetings once again, Pojo readers! I've been very busy for the past few weeks, but things are finally going to settle down now, and that means I should be able to do more reviews! We're reviewing our Top 10 cards of Plasma Storm this week, so be sure to check back to find the cards to look out for in the new set. Today's Card of the Day is a fairly hyped support Pokemon. Our #9 card of the countdown is Klinklang.
 
Klinklang is a Stage 2 Metal Team Plasma Pokemon. Metal Pokemon weren't all that common in the pre-Plasma Storm metagame, with only the Shift Gear Klinklang-based decks seeing some play, but Klinklang should probably serve to change that, at least for a little bit. As a Team Plasma Pokemon, Klinklang gets support from cards like Colress Machine and Plasma Frigate. 140 HP is standard for Stage 2, and Klinklang should be able to take at least one good hit before being Knocked Out. Fire Weakness is not a huge problem anymore, as Ho-Oh-EX and friends are rare due to the dominance of Blastoise/Keldeo. Moving on, Psychic Resistance is good against the omnipresent Mewtwo-EX, and a Retreat Cost of 3 is quite a bit, but expected from this Gear Pokemon (and also makes it searchable with Heavy Ball).
 
Klinklang has an Ability and one attack. Plasma Steel protects all of your Metal Pokemon from damage by your opponent's Pokemon-EX. This is a very powerful Ability, as Sigilyph (a single Pokemon with this effect) has been quite effective with this type of Ability, and Klinklang should help other cards like Cobalion-EX see play. Unfortunately, Plasma Steel only affects your Metal Pokemon, so it is somewhat restrictive, but even still, this Klinklang should be a nice addition to Shift Gear decks as well as its own new archetype.
 
Heavy Bullet is the Gear Pokemon's form of offense, dealing 70 damage for two Metal and a Colorless, while also dealing 20 damage to one of your opponent's Benched Pokemon if you flip heads. While spread damage is still very nice, 70 damage isn't quite enough in the current metagame to be effective, so chances are Klinklang will be relegated to the role of a support Pokemon. Luckily, this is a role that suits it incredibly well.
 
Modified: 3.5/5 I can see the potential for a Klinklang-based Plasma Steel deck, but its viability will largely depend on how the rest of the metagame shifts with the release of this set. Metal attackers are relatively few and far between, with Cobalion-EX being the only notable one I can think of. That being said, Plasma Steel is a very powerful Ability, and is definitely one you should look out for at your upcoming State/Province/Territory Championships.
 
Limited: 4/5 Klinklang is also fairly useful in Limited, but for a different reason. Plasma Steel will likely not be a major factor here, but will definitely be welcome when your opponent does in fact play a Pokemon-EX. However, Heavy Bullet works incredibly well in this format, dealing solid damage all while damaging the bench. Overall, Klinklang is about as effective as most other Stage 2s in Limited, in that if you get it out, you're probably going to win, even more so if your opponent has an EX with no counter!

Jebulous Maryland Player

Klinklang
 
Klinklang is a Stage 2 Metal Pokemon with 140 HP.  It is weak to Fire, resistant to Psychic, and has a retreat cost of 3.  It is searchable by Heavy Ball.
 
'Plasma Steel' is an ability that prevents all damage done to your Metal Pokemon by attacks from your opponent's EX Pokemon.  This is why this card will see play.  In a format where EXs are reigning supreme, people will want to counter them.  Sigiplyph and Bouffalant both put up a good fight for EX Pokemon.  Klinklang borrows from the former by giving all Metal Pokemon its ability.  HOWEVER, after reading the text, it only prevents damage.  While damage is what will win/lose you the game, paralysis is effective in buying time to build up a strategy against the ability.
 
'Heavy Bullet' costs 2 Metal and 1 Colorless energy.  It does 70 damage and you flip a coin.  If heads it does 20 damage to one of your opponen't Benched Pokemon.  Not that great since Darkrai has a similar cost and auto-hits the bench.
 
So from what I heard, people have planned on pairing this with either the Klinklang that moves Metal energy around, or Cobalion EX.  We'll see what comes out as the competitive deck.  The ability is great if you can manage everything well.  Though smart players will learn to not rely only on EX attackers.  The problem is that they will need an attacker that OHKOs this thing.  I haven't looked back through all the cards, but I'm sure there is a Fire Pokemon with Colorless attacks (I know Reshiram off the top of my head).  Though it'd have to do 70 damage... And if one doesn't exist, then we might see some more Fire decks popping up.
 
Modified: 4/5
Limited: 4/5
Combos With:  ...
 
Questions, comments, concerns: jebulousthemighty@yahoo.com


Otaku

Today we are in for a treat: the Stage 2 Pokémon Klinklang (BW: Plasma Storm 90/135).  It clocks in as number nine in the Top 10 Promising Picks of Plasma Storm!  Most Stage 2 Pokémon have not made a good showing this format, so when they crack the Top 10 they are usually pretty amazing.  Let’s see if this card lives up to that, or is just pure hype.

 

Stats

 

Miscellaneous: Klinklang is one of the new Team Plasma Pokémon.  What that does and doesn’t mean is the subject of an article you can read here.  In short I’ll be referring to today’s CotD as Klinklang [Plasma] to distinguish it from other versions, and unless an effect specifies “Team Plasma” cards it won’t affect play.

 

Type: Klinklang [Plasma] is a Metal-Type Pokémon, which makes total sense given that it is a pure Steel-Type in the video games.  Metal Weakness isn’t huge but it does exist and sees some play.  Metal Resistance on the other hand doesn’t exist, at least not on anything still Modified legal, which is a plus.  There is no actual Type Support, but there is some support for Metal-Type Energy, which I’ll address later.

 

Stage: Klinklang [Plasma] is a Stage 2 Pokémon; this is the worst Stage 2 be right now, though Stage 1 Pokémon aren’t exactly thriving either.  Basic Pokémon dominate the format, making it vary hard on a Pokémon that requires you play down its Basic form (Kling), wait a turn, and then either drop Rare Candy to go directly to Klinklang [Plasma] or Evolve into Klang and then wait yet another turn.  Either way, it is slow and unless those lower Stages generate advantage, something Klinklang [Plasma] will have to overcome.

 

Hit Points: Klinklang [Plasma] has 140 HP, enough to survive most attacks unless they aren’t augmented, but a second hit will almost always bring it down.  This is about as low as a Stage 2 Pokémon can get away with now, and is arguably good that Klinklang even rates this high: it actually has an abysmal 60 for its base HP stat in the video games, which is a little below average for all Pokémon, and significantly below average for fully Evolved Pokémon.

 

I wonder if it was just decided to make it that high to keep it “playable” or to reflect its good Defense and just barely above average Special Defense video game Base Stats.

 

Weakness: Klinklang is Fire Weak; this is a decent Weakness to have.  Most Fire-Type Pokémon are Water Weak, and thus the format is not friendly to most Fire-Type decks.  Finding a good Fire-Type to splash into decks isn’t easy; there are options but… specialized cards are specialized.  There are a few that show promise, or that already had decent decks, so it isn’t a free pass.

 

It isn’t the worst Weakness Klinklang could have been stuck with, either; two of the three component’s of the TCG Fighting-Type (Fighting and Ground) score double damage against Steel (video game’s version of Metal-Type Pokémon).  This is a bad format for Fighting-Weakness.

 

Resistance: Klinklang [Plasma] has Psychic Resistance -20; useful when staring down the commonly played Mewtwo EX (BW: Next Destinies 54/99, 98/99; BW Promo BW45) or Sigilyph (BW: Dragons Exalted 52/124), and thrilling simply for existing when so many cards lack any Resistance whatsoever.

 

Still, I have to bring out my soap box to give a quick speech: in the video games the Metal-Type equivalent – Steel-Type Pokémon – are Resistant to Normal, Flying, Rock, Bug, Ghost, Steel, Grass, Psychic, Ice, Dragon and Dark moves, taking only half damage from them.  Steel-Type Pokémon are also completely immune to damage from Poison-Type moves, zeroing out damage.  That is 12 of 17 Types, just over two-thirds of all Types!

 

The TCG Psychic-Type represents three of those (Ghost, Poison, and Psychic) and since moves are the same Type as the Pokémon using them, “Immunity” isn’t an option; even Resistance doesn’t work like the video games because there it halves damage but due to rounding issues, it just subtracts from damage in the TCG.  The TCG Types of Colorless (Normal and Flying), Grass (Grass and Bug), Metal (Steel), Dragon (…Dragon), and Dark (Darkness) would all be appropriate Resistance options.

 

While it would be quite a bit to squeeze onto cards, I really would like to see cards enjoy multiple Weakness and Resistance options… eventually, when the game has specifically been designed with this in account.  Colorless or Darkness Resistance would likely have been more useful than Psychic.

 

Retreat: Klinklang [Plasma] as a Retreat score of three; this is high enough you’ll want to pack options to lower it or bypass manually retreating at all.  If it proves to be an able attacker, you might also (or instead) include the support it would need to simply tough it out in the Active spot.  The upside of the pricey Retreat is that Klinklang is a legal target for Heavy Ball… and unlike most Evolutions, you can run the entire line with each version having the same Retreat cost of three (or more) and thus all can be legal search targets for Heavy Ball.

 

As I have been citing the video game so much, it is interesting to note that there Klinklang has an above average score for its Speed Base Stat.  It isn’t extremely high, but let us be glad Klinklang didn’t get stuck with a score of two.

 

Effects

 

Ability: Plasma Steel is very potent Ability, blocking all damage done your Metal-Type Pokémon by your opponent’s Pokémon-EX.  In a format dominated by Pokémon-EX this is amazing.  The format isn’t purely Pokémon-EX, so neither Klinklang [Plasma] nor its fellow Metal-Type Pokémon aren’t completely safe, and effects of attacks still go through the guard.  Some Pokémon-EX also have their own effects to neutralize Plasma Steel.

 

Attack: Heavy Bullet requires (MMC) and delivers 70 points of damage to the Defending Pokémon and 20 points to one of your opponent’s Benched Pokémon (your choice).  This isn’t terrible, but it isn’t strong enough to carry a deck.  Unless you have a compatible form of Energy acceleration, you probably won’t be attacking with Klinklang [Plasma], and even with it you would only use it in desperation or when for some reason, the 70/20 split is going to basically win the game.

 

Synergy: There is definite synergy between the attack and the Ability, but it isn’t enough to make Heavy Bullet a key part of a deck’s attack plan.  If your opponent has few or no non-Pokémon-EX to attack with, it will suffice: this is especially important in the case of “few” since you might be able to safely take them out on the Bench.

 

Usage

 

Card Family: Klinklang [Plasma] has a huge card family: the Klinklang line has appeared in numerous sets and as a Team Plasma Pokémon, all their current support must also be considered.  I will begin with the lower Stages of the Klinklang line and other versions of Klinklang.

 

There are six releases of Klink: Black & White 74/114, McDonald’s 2011 10/12, BW: Emerging Powers 74/98, BW: Dark Explorers 75/108, BW: Boundaries Crossed 97/149 and BW: Plasma Storm 88/135.  There are four releases of Klang: Black & White 75/114, BW: Emerging Powers 75/98, BW: Dark Explorers 76/108, and BW: Plasma Storm 89/135.  Lastly (for listing purposes, at least) are the four options for Klinklang: Black & White 76/114, BW: Emerging Powers 76/98, BW: Dark Explorers 77/108, and of course today’s card.

 

All are Metal-Type Pokémon with Fire Weakness and Psychic Resistance; the consistency is appreciated, as nothing else makes sense for the Type, Fire Weakness is the better than the only appropriate alternative, and… well other forms of Resistance would have been nice, but given how no Resistance is the norm, I am just grateful for they all have Resistance regardless of to what Type.

 

As much as I want to break down every single card in this pool, we just don’t have the time.  So instead I’ll just list my suggested picks: BW: Dark Explorers 75/108 for Klink and BW: Dark Explorers 76/108 for Klang as both versions have max HP, somewhat useful attacks, and are legal Heavy Ball targets.  If you are not using Heavy Ball, then just avoid Klink BW: Boundaries Crossed 97/149 if you are not (the others all have some merit).  As for the other Klinklang, Black & White 76/114 is the only one worth running instead of or in addition to today’s card; the other two aren’t bad but just aren’t good enough to be competitive.

 

For Team Plasma support, there are a few that apply here.  Skarmory (BW: Plasma Storm 87/135) is a Basic Metal-Type Pokémon with 90 HP, Fire Weakness, Psychic Resistance, and a single Energy Retreat score.  Besides being a Team Plasma Pokémon itself, for (C) its first attack allows you to discard a Team Plasma card and draw three cards.  The second attack isn’t worth mentioning.  You could use this, but it isn’t worth it.  The few other Pokémon currently out that reference Team Plasma aren’t Metal-Type, making them clash with the deck’s theme, so they can wait until another time as well.

 

Colress Machine is an Item that searches out the new Energy card Plasma Energy and also attaches it to one of your Team Plasma Pokémon.  This would allow a Turn 2 Heavy Bullet, but again I don’t believe it is worth it in this deck.  Plasma Grunt is a new Supporter that allows you to discard a Team Plasma card to draw four cards, and this might actually be worth considering if the rest of the deck has enough Team Plasma cards to spare, but probably not given how Cheren (draw three, no other effect) hasn’t been very popular.

 

Modified: Despite having some issues with the potential Team Plasma support currently available, there is a deck waiting for this card; three decks if you are quite generous.  Klinklang [Plasma] can simply be the backbone of its own deck, supporting good Metal-Type attacking Pokémon like the new Cobalion EX (BW: Plasma Storm 93/135, 133/135) which are then immune to damage from all but a select few Pokémon-EX.

 

Klinklang [Plasma] can also be added as a single into decks built around other versions of Klinklang, with Klinklang Black & White 76/114 actually being part of a well known deck that has seen significant success, though its popularity and potency waxes and wanes according to the metagame.  The deck actually focuses on using a variety of Pokémon-Types, but if you can make room for that single Klinklang [Plasma], it both protects the backbone of this build (Black & White 76/114) from Pokémon-EX.

 

The third option (really a variation of the single true choice) you can go for a mostly even blend of Klinklang [Plasma] and Klinklang (Black & White 76/114), probably a 2-2 split.  This is basically taking the previous, successful Klinklang deck and focusing on Metal-Type Pokémon.  You can still run a few off-Type attackers, but they would be used sparingly.  It is hard to run a split like this and you have to lose or completely nerf the Type-matching aspect, but you retain the Energy moving capacity due to the Shift Gear Ability on Black & White 76/114, which means Max Potion shenanigans.  You also can rely more heavily on basic Metal Energy, which actually reduces one of the major risks of the traditional build.

 

Unlimited: Pokémon-EX are not the dominant force of this format, and many games the Ability just wouldn’t factor in.  Thus despite the many tricks that would open up for it, Klinklang [Plasma] doesn’t have a place in Unlimited.

 

Limited: The Ability is unlikely to come into play here; when Pokémon-EX are often great to run, but they are a higher rarity and most in this set aren’t fast enough to get away with the infamous 39 Energy plus them build.  If you pull enough of the lower Stages to build a solid line, you also need a pool of Pokémon friendly enough to running a good chunk of basic Metal Energy, as Klinklang [Plasma] needs at least two in order to attack.

 

When it can attack, it is a fearsome site.  You won’t encounter a lot of Pokémon in Limited with 140 (or more) HP; Evolutions usually aren’t pulled alongside sufficient lower Stages to be worth running, resulting in significantly lower HP scores and damage outputs.  70 in one shot is enough to OHKO most Basic Pokémon in this set, and Bench damage is highly Prized in a format where retreating an injured attacker to avoid giving up a Prize is good strategy.

 

Ratings

 

Unlimited: 1/5

 

Modified: 3.8/5

 

Limited: 3.25/5

 

 

Summary

Klinklang [Plasma] has been extremely hyped by some and dismissed by others.  I believe it will be a viable deck, but as a counter to Pokémon-EX its performance will vary according to the metagame.  Klinklang [Plasma] will be great for a bit, decks will adjust to deal with it and it will lose steam, then players will abandon those changes to handle then current metagame threats and it will make a comeback, leading to players to adjust to deal with it and perpetuating the cycle.

 

I had this card as my number eight pick.

Mad Mattezhion
 Professor Bathurst League Australia

Hello again, it's another day on the internet as the Pojo review crew brings you number 9 on the list of promising prospects from Plasma Storm. Today's card under the spotlight is Klingklang.

Aside from having possibly the most onomatopoeic name in the history of Poke'mon, Klingklang has enjoyed some fleeting fame as the lynchpin in a rainbow Poke'mon EX deck just before the rotation of the HGSS block (when we lost the well-loved Rainbow Energy). Today's card doesn't promise the same energy moving tricks as it's BW cousin, but it does have an intriguing Ability all the same.

Klinklang's main reason for existing is Plasma Steel, which is an Ability stating that your [m] Poke'mon cannot be damaged by attacks from Poke'mon EX (non-damage effects apply as normal).

Each of the Poke'mon EX released has at least been tested, and every last one of them deals damage with their attacks. True, some of them have bonus effects (Articuno, Kyurem and Mew are culprits) while others hit the Bench (Raikou, Kyogre and Darkrai, to name a few) but every last Poke'mon EX is powerless to get around Plasma Steel, making your Metal Poke'mon effectively immune to the vast majority of leading attackers.

The rest of Klinklang's stats are mediocre at best. Being a Stage 2 is unexciting while ever all Poke'mon EX are Basic and Metal Bullet isn't going make your opponents cower in fear (although to be fair, it is a reasonable option whenever your opponent can't hit back and you don't have anything better on the table). The retreat cost is a heavy annoyance and the HP is less than stellar, 140 is a big number but we are all spoiled by the 150 average introduced for Stage 2 Poke'mon in B&W while Poke'mon EX have ruined our expectations for the next several years at least.

To end my rambling, Klinklang is here today because it can be mixed with its BW cousin and Max Potion to guarantee that your Metal Poke'mon are untouchable (Plasma Frigate can even remove the Fire Weakness). With Registeel EX, Cobalion EX and Cobalion NV around, the deck could be a contender.

Modified: 3.75 (massive potential throttled by the necessity of getting a pair of vulnerable Stage 2 Poke'mon up and running before your opponent can belt the living daylights out of your Klinks and Klangs, massive card draw and rapid evolution will be necessary for success)

Limited: 3 (about average in terms of attack power, Metal is an underrepresented type as usual which makes splashing the energy for Klinklang a risky move. Still, the possible bench hits plus the immunity to Poke'mon EX makes it a decent critter if you have multiple Klink and Klang)

Combos with: Klinklang BW, Plasma Frigate


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