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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

 M Blastoise EX

- XY BREAKpoint

Date Reviewed:
March 31, 2016

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Standard:
Expanded:
Limited:

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

Back to the main COTD Page


aroramage

Ahh yes, Mega Blastoise, once again getting the...wait, I already did this yesterday. Ah well, it's pretty much the same as before, just gotta figure out which one between XY and Generations that you'd wanna run. 

So to start, XY's got one attack in Hydro Bombard, a 3-for-120 strike that can hit 2 Bench-sitters for an additional 30 damage apiece. Basically, it's a straight upgrade from Blastoise-EX (GEN)'s Hydro Press, which only dealt 100 damage, hit 1 Bench-sitter for 20 damage, and costed 4 Energy. Basically, if you paired up XY's Mega with GEN's EX, you'd get a solid upgrade. Not necessarily a monstrous powerhouse, but it'd be decently powerful. Just be wary that those 3 Energies are all Water Energy, so no quick charging to that attack. 

That being said, let's actually take a look at Generations' M Blastoise-EX! Once again, the developers felt the need to boost the cost of his attacks up like with his previous evolution, but maybe for that extra Energy, it'll be worth more in the long run. And for 4 Energy, we get Dread Launcher, which deals a whopping 180 damage!! That's more than most other Megas can hit at the moment, and that's really saying something about him! There is a slight catch though; with that power comes the risk of a coin flip that could cost you 2 Energy if you land tails. 

So is 180 damage worth it, given that it costs 4 Energy, might end up with you losing 2 Energy and not being able to use it again right away, and is on a slow Mega Evo with no Spirit Link? Well...that's really the caveat to playing with either copy of M Blastoise-EX, that last bit. Without a Spirit Link, they're too slow to be properly competitive with all the other Mega EXs. So with that last bit out of the way, is it worth it? Probably! 

Let's face it, every Pokemon-EX that's not a Mega will get CRUSHED by this card barring Wailord-EX, and at the end of the day, it's a 50/50 chance to not be able to use it again right away. On the other hand, it's also a 50/50 chance to USE IT AGAIN RIGHT AWAY!! So yeah, it's a very risky maneuver, but compared to a safe shooting 120 and 2-30s that can 2HKO most anything and otherwise set up for the next shot of whoever comes next? 

...actually that one does sound better huh? 

Rating 

Standard: 2/5 (mostly what hurts is the lack of a Spirit Link card) 

Expanded: 2/5 (seriously...just give them Spirit Links) 

Limited: 4.5/5 (or are you just waiting for the XY sets to rotate out?!) 

Arora Notealus: I wonder what would happen if they had combined the Mega mechanic with their BREAK mechanic? Like, still have Mega-EX and all the rules that apply, but also let them choose from the attacks beneath their Pokemon as well? That way Mega-EX can have Abilities the way BREAK Evolutions do without worrying about not being able to attack. Then again, that would have probably made them too powerful... 

Next Time: A living legend descends upon the masses.


Otaku

As promised it is time to cover M Blastoise-EX (Generations 18/83) in more detail.  Nothing has changed since yesterday.  The Water-Type still hits nearly all Fire-Types and some Fighting-Types for double damage due to Weakness, but the amount of decks where that will matter is low right now.  Water-Type has some great support cards and unlike yesterday, if Blastoise-EX is worth using it might behoove it to cash in on Archie’s Ace in the Hole.  As a Mega Evolution without a Spirit Link card, something I had hoped Generations might address, Archie’s Ace in the Hole is the only way to avoid losing approximately a turn and a half; one turn for the normal prerequisites of Evolving in general and your turn ending as a result of normal Mega Evolution.  220 HP is the low end of the typical Mega Evolution score; still enough that most of the time M Blastoise-EX can take a hit, sometimes even two or three against decks that have incomplete setups or aren’t focused on raw damage in the first place.  As usual though, nothing is safe from OHKOs.  Grass Weakness will be a bit worse here than on Blastoise-EX in the sense that here it will matter just a bit more often due to the increased HP; attacks that would otherwise have just failed to score a OHKO or perhaps even missed it by a solid margin will instead do the deed.  Lack of Resistance is typical and I won’t dock the card any points for it, high HP scores like those of Mega Evolutions are a bit more likely to make it matter.  The Retreat Cost of [CCC] is too high to bother paying, at least at full price, unless you’re a bit desperate.  Try to include an alternative to retreating, either at all or at full Price. 

Like all Mega Evolutions without an Ancient Trait, all M Blastoise-EX has is one attack.  In this case it is  “Dread Launcher” for [WWCC], buying 180 damage and a coin flip.  The attack does the same damage either way with the coin flip just determining whether or not you’ll have to discard two [WW] attached to M Blastoise-EX itself (“tails” is the discard, of course).  180 damage is not as impressive as it was prior to Mega Evolutions.  There are several things this will not OHKO, however when we look at what they are we see 

·         Pokémon protected in some manner (including HP buffs)
·        
Virizion-EX (170 HP + Resistance)
·        
Chesnaught BREAK (190 HP)
·        
Team Aqua’s Kyogre-EX (190 HP)
·        
Team Magma’s Groudon-EX (190 HP)
·        
Wailord (BW: Dragons Exalted 26/124) (200 HP)
·        
Mega Evolutions which are not Water Weak
·        
Wailord-EX (250 HP) 

More of those have or currently see competitive play than I prefer, but give problems to almost every similar attacker (like Safeguard Pokémon).  Virizion-EX is the only real exception that stands out and it is only legal for Expanded play.  As such, this is still enough to at least consider trying in a deck, and as such we’ll review Blastoise-EX and the other M Blastoise-EX for any potential help they may provide; otherwise one would just use Archie’s Ace in the Hole. 

Blastoise-EX (XY 29/146, 142/146; XY: Black Star Promos XY30) and Blastoise-EX (Generations 17/83) have a lot in common.  Both are Water Type Basic Pokémon-EX with 180 HP, Grass Weakness, no Resistance, Retreat Cost [CCC], no Ancient Trait, no Ability and two attacks.  Blastoise-EX (XY 29/146, 142/146; XY: Black Star Promos XY30) can use “Rapid Spin” for [CC] to hit for 30 damage while forcing both players to change out their respective Active Pokémon.   For [WWW] it can use “Splash Bomb” for 120 damage and a coin flip; “tails” means 30 points of self damage. We looked at it here when it was new, or rather some of the other reviewers did as I thought I had quit the game at the time (...I got the PTCGO working on my computer, hence my return not much later).  Looks like baby_mario and HEZ got it about right.  Yesterday’s Blastoise-EX (Generations 17/83) sports “Hyper Whirlpool” for [WCC] which hits for 60 damage and gives you a coin flip to try and discard an Energy from the opponent’s Active.  The second attack, “Hydro Press”, costs [WWCC] and does 100 damage to the opponent’s Active plus 20 damage to one of your opponent’s Benched Pokémon (your choice which).  Like I said in its review, these are useful effects but either need to hit harder or cost less Energy.  Not that I want another aggressive opener that can double as a main attacker, but Blastoise-EX (Generations 17/83) just doesn’t do enough for what it costs. 

M Blastoise-EX (XY 30/146) has the same everything as today’s version except for its attack and non-gameplay-relevant bits (like its collector number).  For [WWW] “Hydro Bombard” does 120 plus 30 to of your opponent’s Benched Pokémon.  While not horrible, whether thinking about it when it was first released or considering it now, it really is outclassed by what works.  Bench damage can be a great thing and over two turns you’d be able to hit up to four different Benched Pokémon for 30 damage (or two for 60 or one for 60 and two for 30) if enough are present while taking a highly probable 2HKO against the opponent’s Active, but that wasn’t enough to justify giving up a turn back then and still isn’t enough now (or to warrant using Archie’s Ace in the Hole on it instead).  This isn’t too likely to help today’s version as part of a tag team but only because of how difficult it is to get into play; since Dread Launcher falls short of OHKOing the biggest stuff, something up front doing some Bench damage while still hammering on the Active would have been welcome.  Doesn’t seem to be any real competition, either. 

So is there a use in either Expanded or Standard play for M Blastoise-EX (Generations 18/83)?  Probably not but it is a lot closer than yesterday’s subject.  Even in Standard you could just build a Water based beatdown deck using Archie’s Ace in the Hole to put M Blastoise-EX into play.  Double Colorless Energy, Mega Elixir and/or Mega Turbo can call help it power up.  While you cannot slap Fighting Fury Belt on it to boost HP and damage (you can attach it, but it won’t do anything) you still have Muscle Band if you want to worry about a few edge cases or one of several other useful Pokémon Tools instead.  If you are really worried about discarding Energy (sometimes it is to your benefit, but usually not) go with Trick Coin so you can reflip the first tails.  I am thinking Bursting Balloon is the best option, even if discards itself.  It will still fend off Pokémon Tool F cards and anything that attacks and damages M Blastoise-EX will have six damage counters placed on it.  This can OHKO small Night March attackers without burning an attack or drop other Mega Evolutions into OHKO range of Dread Launcher.  I suppose if you want to buff its own HP and protect against Confusion, you would almost have a legitimate use for Heavy Boots.  Palkia-EX (XY: BREAKpoint 31/122) could help with Energy acceleration and function as an alternate attacker, but it might be better to just use some of the non-Pokémon based options.  Regice can use pretty much everything I recommended for M Blastoise-EX but is a Basic and not a Pokémon-EX; not only can it avoid certain protective effects but it brings its own built into its “Resistance Blizzard” attack. 

I wouldn’t expect to win anymore more than a very, very small and laidback tournament with this M Blastoise-EX and even then it will require a lot of luck to avoid almost guaranteed auto-losses, but if you insist you might manage a functional deck for Standard play.  Same goes for Expanded except there is more competition here without a lot more assistance, so it scores a bit lower.  I have seen nothing about Generations Limited format events.  I am not able to attend any so I have not looked too hard but given how this set is being released, seems like they just are not happening.  Still on the unlikely chance you and your friends get together to do it on your own or maybe just as a local OP kind of thing, I’ll tell you that M Blastoise-EX is reasonably strong.  The catch as always is you need to not only pull it but Blastoise-EX as well.  If you do manage it go ahead and include it on the off chance you’ll have the opportunity and the need to Mega Evolve. 

Ratings 

Standard: 2/5 

Expanded: 1.8/5 

Limited: 3.5/5 

Summary: M Blastoise-EX isn’t quite a OHKO machine but Dread Launcher is a solid attack and you could try to get it into play via Archie’s Ace in the Hole.  The effort you would put into doing so is probably better used on something else, but this is nowhere near as far behind M Gyarados-EX as I would have expected.


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