And since last week we talked about
Dragonair, let's talk Dragonite!
Dragonite is pretty simple - he's a
powerhouse of a Stage 2 with some big drawbacks. That
becomes evident right away with Dragon Wave, a 2-for-130
hit that requires you to discard 1 Grass and 1 Electric
Energy. If Vikavolt weren't a thing, this attack would
probably be useless, but as it stands, you've got a
Stage 2 supporting a Stage 2 to deliver an onslaught of
constant damage from your deck - mitigated by recovery
cards like Brock's Grit and Super Rod - to smack 2HKOs
all over the dang place.
And then you get to Giant Tail,
which is a HUGE 5-for-200 strike...that only hits 50% of
the time. If you flip Tails, it does nothing. Ironic,
isn't it? There's some appeal to Dragon Wave at least,
but Giant Tail is a huge bust - you'll never want to use
it, you'll never want to put 5 Energy on Dragonite to
use it, and how would you even be able to use it if
you're constantly discarding Energy for Dragon Wave? It
really feels like the essence of a tacked-on attack,
like they didn't want to give Dragonite an Ability, so
instead they gave him a really bad attack.
Which relegates Dragonite to a
one-trick pony in a one-trick deck, and it's not looking
optimistic for him. Granted, his pre-evolution Dragonair
does provide some good incentive to play him with the
Energy boost, but Dragon Wave is the only thing that
would drive people to even pick up Dragonite for their
own Vikavolt-Dragonite decks.
...cause he ain't getting run in
Standard: 1.5/5 (a very niche card
with niche appeal, which is a shame)
Expanded: 1.5/5 (he's got
potential, but he needs another Stage 2 to do it)
Limited: 2/5 (which just limits
what he can do)
Arora Notealus: Dragonite has had a
hard-knock life as of late, and I think part of it stems
from his Energy costs, and another bigger part of it is
the cards he comes in on. At least the Colorless
Dragonite-EX could be playable, but Dragonite-EX (FUF)
didn't see that much play for Busting In, the Dragonites
from Roaring Skies either didn't do enough or took too
long, and when was the last time you even heard of there
being a Dragonite deck? Exactly.
Next Time: The lonely Grass Pokemon
shines a light to its friends.
(Sun & Moon, 96/149) is a tanky 160 HP Stage 2
Dragon type Pokemon.
We reviewed its prior evolutionary Stage 1 card
& Moon, 95/149) last week because of its potentially
game changing attack
has two attacks,
Dragon Wave, which for a Grass and Lightning energy
does 130 damage, and
Giant Tail, which costs five energy of any type but does a whopping
Both attacks have a significant
condition attached to them, however.
mandates that you discard both energy.
Giant Tail requires a coin flip to do any damage at all.
If you flip tails, you do no damage to your
opponent’s active Pokemon.
Keeping in mind last week’s
review of Vikavolt
(Sun & Moon, 52/149), I decided to pair that with
Charge, seemed to have a logical synergy with
Dragon Wave in
that you could potentially replace the energy discarded
also makes that five energy cost of
Giant Tail much more reasonable.
Optimistically, I threw them together in a 4-4-4
line of Dragonite
and a 3-3-3 line of
tossed in a couple of
Super Rods (Breakthrough,
149/162), a couple
Energy Recyclers (Ancient Origins, 72/98), a
Brock’s Grit (Evolutions,
107/108), 6 Grass Energy, 6 Lightning Energy, and a
whole lot of hope that this might actually come together
to make up a somewhat competitive deck.
In one game it was.
I had an enjoyable, fluid, comfortable match
against a Mega
Mewtwo EX (Breakthrough, 64/162) deck.
I managed to get a full bench full of Pokemon,
got them evolved early, perfectly used
Dragonite, and basically dominated one of the best
decks in the format.
In pretty much every other
game, though, it was barely competitive.
I did manage to win two out of ten matches.
The other match was against a mill deck, but my
opponent only got out a single Pokemon -
I donked it easily, but I think almost every
other deck in the game right now would have had the same
success in this position.
I will say that
up against stiff competition: in only one of the ten
matches I had the advantage.
My opponent had the advantage in five of the ten
matches, and neither of us had the advantage in the
Still, beyond the wins and losses, the overall
performance of the deck simply did not put forth a
consistent, competitive effort.
Standard: 1.5 out of 5
Much like many of the other Stage 2 Pokemon
in the Standard rotation right now,
simply can’t compete with many of the other high powered
EX and GX Pokemon.
Maybe if the meta slows down in the future it
will become more
competitive, but I would not recommend playing it