(Sun & Moon 87/149) is a Metal Type Pokémon, allowing it
to tap the solid support of the Metal Type.
Yes, yes I am starting with a pun. Steel yourself
and let us continue! Metal Type Pokémon can access
a couple protective effects like the “Plasma Steel”
Ability of Klinklang (BW: Plasma Storm 90/135,
one side of Reverse Valley, Shield Energy,
and Steel Shelter. You got Metal Type
Energy has a few tricks in the form of Bronzong
(XY: Black Star Promos XY21; XY: Phantom Forces 61/119)
and Klinklang (Black & White 76/114); the former
can attach a basic Metal Energy from the discard
to a Benched Pokémon once per turn via its “Metal Links”
Ability, while the latter can move any source of [M]
Energy from Pokémon to Pokémon on your side of the field
via its “Shift Gear” Ability. While it lacks some
of the heavies seen in a lot of contemporary decks, the
Metal Type can claim Aegislash-EX, Cobalion
(XY: Steam Siege 74/114), Cobalion-EX,
Genesect-EX (XY: Fates Collide 64/124, 120/124),
Heatran (XY: Phantom Forces 63/119), Solgaleo-GX,
and others we won’t worry about naming. I don’t
recall any explicitly anti-Metal effects, but you will
find Metal Resistance on most Lightning Types released
after the BW-era. Metal Weakness shows up
on all Fairy Types and certain Water Types.
All in all, being a Metal Type is a pretty good deal.
Being a Stage 1 is okay; you’ll have to invest two cards
for a single Alolan Dugtrio, and wait a turn to
Evolve (or use a Wally), but for competitive
Stage 1 cards, this proves to be a speed bump and not an
insurmountable hurdle. The 100 HP isn’t doing the
card any real favors; it is, of course, better than
having 80 or less HP, but 90 would have been almost
exactly as durable and still been a legal
Level Ball target (for what that is worth).
Fire Weakness is typical of the Metal Type and one of
the things holding it back, as we’ve got some popular,
potent Fire Decks in the metagame and a Weakness shared
with some popular, potent Grass decks. If you see
Fire, Alolan Dugtrio is almost certainly going
down in one hit. Though it won’t make a huge
difference thanks to the HP, the Psychic Resistance is
still appreciated. The Retreat Cost of [CC] is low
enough not to be crippling but high enough not to be a
selling point; you’ll still probably want some
alternatives to paying full price to manually retreat
Alolan Dugtrio. Your opponent will also need
some help retreating because Alolan Dugtrio has
the Ability “Tangling Hair”; each instance you have of
Tangling Hair in play increases the Retreat Cost of your
opponent’s Active by [C]. Unfortunately for
Alolan Dugtrio, effects that set the Retreat Cost of
a Pokémon to zero, like that of Float Stone, will
still override this effect. The last thing
Alolan Dugtrio brings to the table itself is its
“Dig Under” attack for [CCC]; it allows you to select
one of your opponent’s Pokémon and do 50 damage, sans
Weakness or Resistance (yes, even if you select your
opponent’s Active). Even with the wide open Energy
cost, even though hitting the Bench is useful, the
damage output still seems too low given the Energy
Evolves from Alolan Diglett. It is a Basic
Metal Type Pokémon with 50 HP, Fire Weakness, Psychic
Resistance, Retreat Cost [C], and two attacks. The
first is “Spelunk” for , which allows you to look at
the top three cards of your deck, then rearrange them as
you wish. The second is “Mud-Slap” for [M], doing
10 damage. Spelunk isn’t a bad trick to have, but
it won’t keep Alolan Diglett alive to Evolve, and
Mud-Slap is going to be pointless except for that odd
occasion you just need to attack for 10 damage to finish
something off or set it up for the next turn. I am
not particularly impressed by either member of this
Evolution line, but you might be able to make use
of it to power-up certain attacks that work based on the
Retreat Cost of the opponent’s Active. Specifically
the opponent’s Active, as unlike some other Pokémon with
similar effects, Tangling Hair only works on the
opponent’s Active. Sorry folks; I’ve got nothing
for this card. I wasn’t able to come up with any
ideas and test them, and I haven’t run into anyone using
it either. I think I’ve seen a few ideas online,
but that was well before the card released (and they
didn’t seem worth it).
We’ve had effects that increase Retreat Costs and
attacks that feed off increased Retreat Costs since
before the last rotation, and they are still intact for
Standard play. They haven’t been able to overcome
stuff like Fairy Garden and Float Stone,
and I don’t see anything in Alolan Dugtrio to
change that. I wouldn’t bother with this card
except in Limited play but do remember it for the
future, just in case.
(Sun & Moon, 87/149) comes from the Sun & Moon
expansion and features the ability
Hair adds one Energy to your opponent’s retreat cost
for their active Pokemon.
This means that unless your opponent has an
alternative means of switching their Pokemon out of the
active, it becomes even more burdensome to retreat an
Attaching energy plays a vital part of almost
every deck strategy.
To lose two or three energy cards to get your
active Pokemon back on the bench can significantly
hinder your attacking ability.
Hair stacks as well – if you have three
on your bench, your opponent’s active Pokemon’s retreat
cost increases by three energy.
Unfortunately, the meta
contains a wide variety of options when it comes to
moving cards out of the active position and back down on
to the bench:
Float Stone (Breakthrough, 137/162)
Escape Rope (Primal Clash, 127/160)
Switch (Sun & Moon, 160/149)
Solgaleo GX (Sun & Moon, 89/149)
Part of this comes in response
to the extremely powerful card
Because forcing a high retreat, incapacitated
active Pokemon up from the bench has become an integral
part of the strategy of many decks, players have
developed counter measures to deal with this potentially
Stocking three to five switching cards in the
typical deck reduces the value of
Tangling Hair has another use besides making retreat more difficult.
Tangling Hair has good synergy with another Sun & Moon
(Sun & Moon, 82/149).
Sharpedo’s attack Aqua Impact
does base sixty damage plus twenty damage for each
energy in the opponent’s retreat cost.
This means if the opponent’s active Pokemon has
free retreat, it only does sixty damage.
However, if the opponent has a four energy
retreat cost, Aqua
Impact does 140 damage.
Tangling Hair adds to this.
Alolan Dugtrio on the bench, it increases the damage
done by another twenty.
Plus, you can add
Team Aqua’s Secret Base (Double Crisis, 28/34) and that adds
another twenty damage as well.
If you have a couple
on the bench,
Secret Base in play, and an opponent with a two
retreat cost, Aqua
Impact does 160 damage.
Unfortunately, I did not have a lot of success
with this deck – I only went two and eight in ten
also occurred to me that
might match well with
Yveltal (Breakthrough, 94/162), but I’ve
Yveltal to last me awhile… someone else can try that
Standard: 1.5 out of 5
has a reasonable ability and we may discover a better
use for it at some point in the future, but right now I
would not spend much time trying to squeeze it into a