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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

Spinda

- Primal Clash

Date Reviewed:
April 21, 2015

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Standard: 1.8
Expanded: 1.9
Limited: 3.75

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale.
1 being horrible.  3 ... average.  5 is awesome.

Back to the main COTD Page


aroramage

YOU SPIN MY HEAD RIGHT ROUND RIGHT ROUND LIKE A RECORD BABY RIGHT ROUND ROUND ROUND 

Alright, obligatory song reference over. Spinda here is an adorable ball of fluff that can't stop spinning around, and that's gonna translate to his card!...somewhat. Really, Spinda's biggest shtick is his Ability to just...well, kinda be Spinda. How many other cute cuddly bear-like creatures do you know just teeter here and there? 

On the plus side, Spinda's attacks are both only 1 Energy apiece. And since they're both Colorless, you can pretty much run Spinda in any deck! That's always nice! So what does Spinda bring to the table? Well first it's Staggering Steps. Sounds interesting, so what does it do? Well, it's a coin flip attack! 

WAIT NO COME BACK, I HAVEN'T EVEN GOTTEN TO THE BEST PART 

It's a coin flip attack...to figure out who's Confused! That's right, you flip a coin, and depending on the result, either the opponent's Pokemon is Confused or Spinda is! Now lemme start by saying Confusion is only "okay" in terms of Status Conditions. Obviously, Paralysis and Poison are near the top, but the rest are all...a bit iffy. Sleep is okay, Burn is just a might bit inferior compared to Poison, and then there's Confusion. All Confusion does is force the opponent to flip a coin, and if they don't get what they need, their Pokemon takes damage.

It used to be the case that manual retreat ALSO required a coin flip. That's no longer the case, and that's why Confusion is the worst Status Condition. It doesn't cause damage every turn, it doesn't keep them from attacking, and it's so easy to get around! Now I know what you're thinking: "But EVERY status can be gotten around by retreating!" Well it didn't used to be that way with Confusion, but since they removed that, Confusion is just below Burn on my list of Status Conditions, so Staggering Steps is a let-down. 

Uproar's not much better either. Alright, so it does 10 damage to each of your opponent's Pokemon, but that damage doesn't increase on subsequent turns, doesn't hit for Weakness...ever, and it's hardly worth justifying running Spinda in your main slot. Guess that's why he ended up as a Common, huh? Oh well, at least he's amusing to look at. 

Rating 

Standard: 1/5 (both attacks are cheap but definitely not worth running) 

Expanded: 1/5 (not gonna do much better here) 

Limited: 2/5 (to be honest...it's a little hard to judge how he'd do in Limited. Sure the spread damage can set-up KOs, and Confusion might hold off the opponent for a bit if you're lucky, but even so, there are just so many better options to take - so many better things to do!!) 

Arora Notealus: I always liked the idea that no two Spinda could have the same spots in the same places the same way, you know? Apparently the chances of that happening are less than 1 in 4 BILLION. To give you an idea, you are more likely to get struck by lightning, hit by a meteor, eaten by a shark, finding your soulmate, and winning the lottery than you are at finding two Spinda with matching spots. 

Next Time: Pierce them heavens, man. PIERCE THEM GOOD


Otaku

The second of my late, late articles, today we look at Spinda (XY: Primal Clash 115/160).  It is a Colorless Pokémon which is… kind of lackluster.  When the game began, nothing was Colorless Weak or Resistant but then after a while they added it in and now they have reverted back; never hitting Weakness is actually a deficit with how the game currently operates while never having to worry about Resistance is only a modest bonus.  In terms of support, there are some good Colorless-Types and a little bit of supporter (Aspertia City Gym) which is good but not great and there is even one piece of anti-Colorless Pokémon support out there in the form of Haxorus (BW: Dragon Vault 16/20), which can hit a Colorless-Type for 120 at a cost of just [CC] (otherwise it hits for 60).  Not really a concern, just a fun bit of trivia.  Again thanks to Weakness being so important, as well as more and more Types gaining dedicated, high profile support, that leaves Colorless hurting.  A lot of the great Colorless-Type attackers of yesteryear are just that; either rotated out or no longer high performing.  You might still see a Lugia-EX deck but things like “White Tea” - mono- or near mono-colorless deck are lucky to be considered budget Expanded decks. 

Spinda is a Basic Pokémon and that is as good as it gets.  Its 80 HP is small, so its probably a OHKO unless your opponent’s set-up is a mess: even against a typical Seismitoad-EX lock deck, if they get the full Muscle Band/Hypnotoxic Laser/Virbank City Gym combo going, Quaking Punch scores an effective OHKO.  Weakness just makes things worse as most Fighting-Types that see competitive play can do 20 or 30 for [F]... which means a Muscle Band or Strong Energy results in a OHKO.  There is no Resistance but that isn’t a huge issue since it is both the norm and even if present, Resistance is usually a small bonus and not a major advantage.  The Retreat Cost of [C] is good, though it tends to be expected on a small Basic not known for being slow or heavy in the video games.  It is easy both to pay and recover from having paid the Energy, and anything that lowers your Retreat Cost turns it into a free retreat. Spinda has two attacks, both of which require just [C].  The first is Staggering Steps: you flip a coin and if “heads” the opponent’s Active Pokémon is Confused but if “tails” Spinda Confuses itself (I know that feeling).  The second attack is Uproar, which hits all opposing Pokémon for 10 damage.  Staggering Steps has a decent name but is bad; Uproar however has some potential. 

For the record, there is one other Spinda in Expanded and Standard play alike: BW: Boundaries Crossed 115/149.  10 less HP and just one attack, but otherwise the same as today’s offering.  It’s lone attack is Whimsy Tackle for [CC]: a “tails fails” job that only hits for 30 damage when it does succeed.  We won’t be using this one alongside today’s and it certainly isn’t competition.  So… what brilliant deck do I have for the XY: Primal Clash 115/160 version?  Well, nothing specific.  A Basic that can do 10 spread just seems to valuable to pass up and worth experimenting with and while it is begging to be OHKOed in response, it is only worth a single Prize when that happens (barring effects that alter such a thing).  In Expanded, enjoy that it is Level Ball compliant while in Limited play run it unless you’re running a +30 deck; its HP lasts longer, Staggering Steps isn’t quite as bad and Uproar is even better! 

Ratings 

Standard: 2.75/5 

Expanded: 2.85/5 

Limited: 4.9/5 

Summary: Yes I really wrote a CotD this short!  Spinda isn’t all that complicated but it offers inexpensive spread on a Basic Pokémon (even if it is a bit on the small side).  While there are cards like Mountain Ring and Mr. Mime (BW: Plasma Freeze 47/116) to block spread damage, I still like the speed and minimal requirements of this card versus what it does.  I doubt this will star in its own deck, but it might have the potential be be a small part of something better.


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