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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

 M Gardevoir-EX
- XY: Steam Siege

Date Reviewed:
Jan. 4, 2017

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Standard: 3.75
Expanded: 3.65
Limited: 4.00

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

Back to the main COTD Page


Otaku

Clocking in at 18th place is M Gardevoir-EX (XY: Steam Siege 79/114, 112/114).  We first looked at this Pokémon here and to save time I’ll just let you read what I wrote here… except that is one of two reviews I missed that week, so time to remedy the situation. 

M Gardevoir-EX is a dual Type: Fairy/Psychic.  Both Types offer some useful pieces of support spread out in various manners.  Of those that focus purely on Pokémon Type, the big winner is Dimension Valley from the Psychic Type.  A bit of an issue because the Fairy Type offers Fairy Garden and when you see the attack, Sky Field is going to make a lot of sense as well.  Xerneas (XY 96/146; XY: Black Star Promos XY05; XY: Steam Siege 81/114) and Xerneas BREAK are useful pieces of [Y] Energy support.  Fairy Weakness is only found on Dragon Types past the BW-era, while Psychic Weakness is found on many Fighting Type and Psychic Type cards; it isn’t the largest combined Weakness group but it is solid.  Fairy Resistance isn’t a thing, but nearly all Darkness and Metal Type Pokémon have Psychic Resistance; good thing Resistance is just -20 damage.  The other aspects of being a Fairy/Psychic Type aren’t particularly important so we’ll move onto something that is: this is a Mega Evolution.  Yes, the name makes that obvious but we’ll need to remember that this card gives up an extra Prize when KO’d, has to deal with detrimental effects targeting Pokémon-EX in general and Mega Evolutions specifically, beneficial effects excluding Pokémon-EX, and the Mega Evolution rule ending your turn (barring Gardevoir Spirit Link).

The good news is that this card has better attributes and effects than it would as a regular Gardevoir card and there are pieces of Mega Evolution support like Mega Turbo.  None of the regular Gardevoir (or even Gardevoir-EX) received the dual Type treatment.  While being a Mega Evolution means it takes a little time and effort to hit the field (especially without ending your turn), that is much easier than being a Stage 2 like the normal versions of Gardevoir.  Its 210 HP is on the small side for a Mega Evolution but it is still enough to usually survive a hit and exceeds any regular Gardevoir by a sizable margin.  Metal Weakness and Darkness Resistance reflect the Fairy half of its heritage; no Weakness is good but there are a few worse to have right now than Metal Weakness, while Darkness Resistance may be the most useful at present.  Its Retreat Cost of [CC] isn’t good, but it isn’t bad either; if you must you can probably afford to pay it and the two Types bring additional options for dealing with it (Fairy Garden and Mystery Energy), though both may have other issues.  The solitary attack on M Gardevoir-EX is “Despair Ray” for [YC], doing 110 damage with the option of discarding as many of your Benched Pokémon as you wish for an extra 10 damage per.  If you dare sacrifice your entire Bench, that’s a 160 damage, but with Sky Field Despair Ray can hit 190 before other effects.  The 110 per turn is solid already thanks to the low cost, and with the effect 2HKOs are reliable while OHKO’s are possible. 

M Gardevoir-EX must Evolve via Gardevoir-EX (and preferably Gardevoir Spirit Link).  Gardevoir-EX (XY: Primal Clash 105/160, 155/160; Generations RC30/RC32) and Gardevoir-EX (XY: Steam Siege 78/114, 111/114, 116/114).  Both are Basic Fairy Type Pokémon-EX with 170 HP, Metal Weakness, Darkness Resistance, Retreat Cost [CC], and two attacks.  XY: Primal Clash 105/160 can use “Life Leap” for [Y] to do 20 damage while healing itself by an amount equal to the damage done, or “Shining Wind” for [YYY] to do 100 damage while negating its Weakness during your opponent’s next turn.  XY: Steam Siege 78/114 has “Link Blast” for [YC] to do 30 damage, plus another 70 (100 total) if it and the opponent’s Active Pokémon have the same amount of Energy attached to them.  For [YYC] it may instead use “Luminous Blade” to do 120 damage, but must discard an Energy from itself.  Neither Gardevoir-EX is great, but also neither is bad; these are solid stats and decent attacks, and in some situations you might be better off with one or the other… so run both.  There is also M Gardevoir-EX (XY: Primal Clash 106/160, 156/160; Generations RC31/RC32) to consider; other than being a mono Fairy Type it has identical stats to today’s M Gardevoir-EX (XY: Steam Siege 79/114, 112/114).  It does have its own attack and that is “Brilliant Arrow”, which costs [YCC] to do 30 damage per [Y] Energy attached to all of your Pokémon.  We looked at this card here and made it our #2 pick for the set.  I recall it saw some success, but don’t remember it being a major player, at least for long.  Fortunately it can play nicely enough with today’s M Gardevoir-EX, giving it a second chance. 

As this is a look back, I don’t have to guess how to run M Gardevoir-EX (XY: Steam Siege 79/114, 112/114).  As the year winds down we’ve seen it not win anything major, but still give a decent showing at multiple events… until the Dallas Texas Winter Regional, which gets us into 2017 as it was a two day event beginning on December 31, 2016 and ending January 1, 2016.  Not only did Xander Pero win the event with M Gardevoir-EX, but three others made the Top 8.  Having half a Top 8 feature any deck is pretty impressive.  Xander’s list is pretty straightforward, and I don’t have a link handy to it yet (the official tournament results weren’t up yet here as of writing this), but the short version is he focused on just M Gardevoir-EX (XY: Steam Siege 79/114, 112/114).  Sky Field made room on the Bench for Dragonite-EX (XY: Evolutions 72/108, 79/108), Hoopa-EX (XY: Ancient Origins 36/98, 89/98; XY: Black Star Promos XY71), and Shaymin-EX (XY: Roaring Skies 77/108, 106/108).  Hawlucha (XY: Steam Siege 97/114) and Rattata (XY: Evolutions 66/108) added some extra tricks to assist in KO’s.  Another interesting inclusion is Fairy Drop for some extra healing.  I wish I could explain more but this is not the M Gardevoir-EX deck that has been giving me problems on the PTCGO.  Well, disregarding a lot of good and bad luck which has been skewing my results across the board. 

On the PTCGO I’ve been alternating between M Scizor-EX and Yveltal-EX decks, both backed by Garbodor (XY: BREAKpoint 57/122) for Standard and mostly just sticking with Maxie’s Yveltal decks for Expanded.  The M Gardevoir-EX deck that has been plaguing me follow two alternate paths.  Thanks to how broken Weakness is as a mechanic, the M Scizor-EX deck doesn’t have a problem either way (though when I keep slamming into Volcanion-EX...) but what surprised me is Darkness Resistance being a significant factor.  The HP on M Gardevoir-EX means a OHKO is difficult, especially with today’s M Gardevoir-EX being able to attack for just two (or even one if Dimension Valley is in play!) Energy.  Some of these builds also used Fairy Drop, but others used Max Potion as these variants focused on reliable 2HKOs.  Either they used Dimension Valley to do 110 (plus the occasional bonus from Bench sacrifices) for one Energy or they even went with Fairy Garden and the full on Fairy deck so that they either would retreat, bring up a spare attacker.   Either cards like Xerneas (and its “Geomancy” attack) or Max Elixir (prior to Mega Evolution) set up multiple attackers ahead of time, or Mega Turbo used before or afterwards, including refueling the same M Gardevoir-EX that turn.  Also some of these use Xerneas BREAK and the other M Gardevoir-EX if you can’t prevent them from filling their side of the field with [Y] Energy. 

If you’re going to a tournament, I’d favor Xander’s list but that is because this deck kind of caught me off guard.  So yeah, it nearly missed 2016 but M Gardevoir-EX (XY: Steam Siege 79/114, 112/114) finally made good, and could be one of the stronger decks next year if Yveltal-EX remains strong.  I think the deck looks better for Standard than Expanded play, though Battle Compressor might assist in its setup.  For Limited play, it looks very good, provided you pull both and it doesn’t take too long to show up. 

Ratings 

Standard: 3.75/5 

Expanded: 3.65/5 

Limited: 4/5 

Summary: So I just spent nearly three pages explaining how M Gardevoir-EX was finally coming into its own but in the end, I didn’t even give it a full four out of five in either Standard or Expanded play.  I believe a large part of its success is that it frustrates Yveltal-EX and other Darkness Type attackers that are currently popular.  Same for any deck that can’t secure a OHKO against it, which is a good deal of the current metagame.  That doesn’t describe the entire metagame, however, so if Yveltal-EX and company slip again we are left with… a still fairly solid deck unless the Metal Type is the one to rise to the top. 

M Gardevoir-EX also only received a single voting point, but with its recent performance I went ahead and broke the tie between it and yesterday’s Ninja Boy in its favor.  It also tied tomorrow’s subject but I’ll wait until then explain why that card managed to take 17th place.


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