Gen IV was a time of great
innovation. Two screens to look at, new updated
graphics, the Physical/Special split, and fluid motions
on what was then the greatest handheld gaming device
ever. Pokemon was changed forever, and to celebrate they
gave us a multitude of new Pokemon, new evos for older
Pokemon, and a LOT of Legendaries.
Manaphy is one such legendary...and
it can breed.
Well, to make Phione at least, but
that's about all she can do. And here in the TCG, Phione
is so underwhelming the only available version of it is
also only the third version of the card ever made.
Manaphy on the other hand has gotten SO much more love,
but can you really blame the designers? Manaphy comes
right to your mind, but I'm pretty sure a few of you had
to go look up what Phione is - and yes, she's a real
Pokemon in fact - cause Phione is THAT forgettable. Just
one of the many injustices done in Gen IV's time.
Oh yeah, right, card reviews.
Manaphy here only needs 1 Water Energy to use each of
her attacks, so that should help, but does it warrant
using Manaphy in your Water deck? Of the two, I think
Deep Sea Swirl is the more useful, given that it's the
best of Birch and Sycaper - aka what Professor Elm did,
only in the form of an attack rather than a Trainer and
drawing only 6 cards as opposed to 7. You remember Elm,
right? No? Man I'm old...
Life Saver on the other hand is
just, "Hey, you got some Water Pokemon in the discard.
Maybe you'd like them in your hand?" So it's not much.
You may actually notice something about these attacks -
neither of them does any sort of damage. In fact,
neither of them does ANYTHING to the opponent's Pokemon
or the opponent! So the real question is, in such a
damage-intense format, why play Manaphy?
Well think of Manaphy's Deep Sea
Swirl the same way Birch's Observations from earlier in
the week could work, only instead of a debatable +6 or
+3, the attack can be a GUARANTEED +6. Dump your
Energies out on, say, Primal Kyogre-EX, play out any of
those Item cards you can while Seismitoad-EX isn't
hanging around, and then at the end of your turn, use
Manaphy to shuffle your deck and draw 6 cards! Not too
Sure, it's not gonna happen that
way most of the time, and you wouldn't want to use
Manaphy right when you're going to lose, but if you need
a way to set-up your attacker on the Bench without him
getting knocked around by your opponent, Manaphy's a
good way to get a fresh hand after playing yours out -
just in time to catch your opponent by surprise!
Standard: 2.5/5 (support all the
way, but a pretty good attack to do it with)
Expanded: 2.5/5 (possibly about the
same here, maybe even higher given the access to
searchers for Manaphy)
Limited: 4/5 (substantial draw
power, though you may end up shuffling cards into the
deck here in this format)
Arora Notealus: Manaphy can bond
with any Pokemon. She's the social butterfly of the
Pokemon world, which is really saying something coming
from the "Seafaring Pokemon." How does Manaphy even talk
to flyers? Do Wingull just soar over and ca-caw over
what the Pidgey in Kanto are saying to the Pidoves in
Unova? I don't THINK that's how that works, especially
when you get into bigger Legendaries like, say, Palkia
or Dialga or Arceus NOPE
Next Time: Hey remember when this
set had Ancient Traits? Wanna see the best one (in my