Peering Into the Future

by Michael ~ August 8th, 2011.

Ed asked me to write something, so I did. Apparently, I’m part of this guest writer week thing. I hear guys like Jay and Pooka are also doing it! That makes me feel super duper special :P. It would be even cooler if I won a sweet T-shirt like this awesome guy I know did. Eh, you can’t win ’em all. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

I think I might start doing something like this where I write about upcoming cards currently receiving hype. For each card, I’ll analyze it and then give my opinion on whether or not I think the hype is worth it. You might think this article seems really premature. You might be right, and if this information turns out to be wrong, it’s whatevs. Everything is subject to change. PONT was “bad”, and then it was in an odd LuxChomp list that happened to win Worlds. You never know what the future holds.

You know, with Red Collection, we get a lot of, hmm, unique cards. We get some tools, some abilities, and then like 90 other filler cards. There is one Pokemon with an ability that definitely stands out among the others. That Pokemon is Victini, playfully dubbed FlipTini or reFlipTini. Let’s look at the stats.

Victini - Red Collection

1) Victini

Victini – Fire – HP60
Basic Pokemon

Ability: Victory Star
You can use this when your Pokemon flip coins as part of an attack. Ignore all results of those coin flips and reflip from the beginning. You can’t use Victory Star more than 1 time during your turn even if you have multiple Victini in play.

[R][C] Assist Power: 30 damage. Move all Energy attached to this Pokemon to 1 of your Benched Pokemon.

Weakness: Water (x2)
Resistance: none
Retreat: 1

There’s pretty much one thing that makes the card attractive. Low HP, a sub-par attack, a weakness to water. You don’t really want to attack with Victini. If, however, Victini gets into the active spot, it isn’t that difficult to get him sitting safely on the bench again, because he’s got just 1 retreat. The thing that DOES make the card so appealing is it’s one-of-a-kind, incredibly unique ability.

Whenever you call an attack that requires a coin flip, you flip. Let’s say it’s tails.  With a Victini on the bench, you can completely reflip the attack. That means you can just restart. Try again. Except-if you reflip-make sure you get heads this time. Come on. Don’t take advantage of this opportunity by failing a second time.

However, there are some things that needed clarification. Let’s say that Machamp SF was in format with this card. You send up Machamp and use Hurricane Punch. You flip two heads, which does 60 damage. With Victini, if you wanted to activate the ability, you’d have to reflip ALL of the coins, not just the two you missed. You have a potential of scoring higher damage, but you also have that chance of doing nothing. Victini is definitely a card that promotes gambling. Don’t be surprised if you see chain smoking, alcoholic, whore-mongering gamblers sitting across the table from you at a Pokemon tournament once this card gets released. It’s hittin’ the fan.

Now, you’re probably wondering what Pokemon could be used with Victini. Let’s take a look at a few.

Sharpedo - Triumphant

1) Sharpedo TM. Unless you’ve been living under the rock for the past few weeks, you probably heard about Justin Williams and his unbelievable performance at our past Nationals with Sharpedo-without Victini. He got one chance to score Sharpedo’s attack, and he managed to go 8-1, a testament to his gambling abilities, as well as Sharpedo’s incredible lock. If you want to read about it, check out his report on 6p quick(http://www.sixprizes.com/tournament-reports/justin-williams-2011-nationals-tournament-report-broke-format-4/). Let’s look at Sharpedo’s attack that screams Victini.

(D)(20) : Flip 2 coins. If both of them are heads, your opponent discards all cards from his or her hand.

Yikes! This card was really overlooked when it was released, for obvious reasons. You gotta flip a coin. That’s kind of a turn off. No wait-you gotta flip TWO coins. That’s really lame. No one likes flipping coins. It seems like coin flips can decide entire games. I mean yeah-the attack’s benefit is incredibly, but still, it was really difficult to pull off. But with Victini, the ability to discard your opponent’s entire hand seems a lot more plausible.

Doing some guesstimation or something like that, you have like a 43.something-47% chance of getting two heads. So even if you don’t get it, you have Victini to try again. Justin Williams single-handedly made people turn heads and look at his heads. Will Sharpedo/Victini see play? I’d say so. The deck is really simple to play, simple to build, and probably pretty cheap to make. However, with cards like Magnezone in format, where you can replenish your entire hand, the discarding factor of Sharpedo may not be as good. Of course, not every deck runs Magnezone, and you can use Slowking to manipulate top decks when and if you discard your opponent’s entire hand. Still, I wouldn’t be surprised to see this in a tournament, and even sitting at the top tables. Even with it’s fragile HP, it’s difficult to make plays  when you don’t have a hand.

While Sharpedo is definitely the most popular of the new flip attack Pokemon, it isn’t the only one. Let’s take a look at some other Pokemon, especially two that are making their debut in the newly released Red Collection.

Amoongus - Red Collection

2) Amoonguss

Amoonguss – Grass – HP90
Stage 1 – Evolves from Foongus

[G] Toxic: The Defending Pokemon is now Poisoned. Place 2 damage counters for Poison between turns.
[C][C] Body Slam: 30 damage. Flip a coin, if heads the Defending Pokemon is now Paralyzed.

Weakness: Fire (x2)
Resistance: Water (-20)
Retreat: 2

Amoongus comes with the typical attack with a flip paralyze. Attacks like these are BROKEN in a Pre-release, but not in the competitive scene. After all, the attacks do weak damage, so if you don’t get the paralyze-ation, then you did virtually nothing to the defending Pokemon. But now, with Victini, that’s about to change. Victini gives you a second chance, so you’ve got a much better chance of landing that crucial paralyze.

Using Amoongus, when you paralyze, you need something to prevent them from simply switching out of it. This is where the obvious combo with Vileplume comes in. I wouldn’t be surprised to see like an Amoongus, Sunflora, Vileplume, Yanmega type of deck to come into tournaments.

Of course, there’s another card that you can run with Amoongus: Mew Prime. Using Mew, you can swarm Amoongus, using Mew’s and doubles. It’s already been proven that Mewbox with Vileplume works, so fitting Amoongus into the deck as well as doubles seems like it could work really, really well. It’s probably gonna see some play, just because it trainer locks, as well as ya know, paralyzing.

Granted, simply evolving can get you out of the lock, and the fact that both Mew and Amoongus are both pretty weak isn’t great. Still, when you get paralyzed, you can’t do anything, and if your trainer locked, it’ll be a while before that Pokemon finally dies. Also, seeing as there is no Crobat G in format, the lock wont work as well as something like a Gliscor lock. Kingdra prime can probably be used, but still. I wonder if a deck like that will be popular. If nothing else, Amoongus warrants some testing.

Vanilluxe - Red Collection

3) Vanilluxe

Vanilluxe – Water – HP130
Stage 2 – Evolves from Vanillish

[W][C] Double Freeze: 40x damage. Flip 2 coins, this attack does 40 damage times the number of heads. If even 1 coin is heads, the Defending Pokemon is now Paralyzed.

[W][W] Frost Breath: 60 damage.

Weakness: Metal (x2)
Resistance: none
Retreat: 2

I’d like to say something about Vanilluxe, as a Pokemon. It’s probably like the stupidest Pokemon ever. Seriously. It’s an ice-cream cone. That’s pretty ridiculous. Some Unova Pokemon are cool, but this is getting pretty weird.

In any case, the first attack is what really draws people to it. For a (W)(C), you flip two coins. If you get even one heads, it’ll do at least 40 and then paralyze. It’s pretty ridiculous because it’s incredibly easy to get at least one heads. With Victini, your chances of getting Vanilluxe swinging and paralyzing are incredibly high. Really, you have 4 chances to get 1 heads. Just 1/4.

Problems with Vanilluxe are obvious: it’s a stage 2. That means you can get it, at the earliest, T2. You’re gonna need something to prevent them from switching, which means Vileplume. So if you run Vanilluxe and Vileplume, that means you gotta set up 2 stage 2’s. Magneboar tried this, and it sorta worked. And that’s probably the case only because Magnezone has built in draw. I mean if we had Spiritomb in format it’d be a TOTALLY different story, but, we don’t. So how can you solve a problem like this? Well, you do it the same way you use Jumpluff: Mew.

Yes, Mew is an incredibly versatile card. Mewbox with Vileplume works, so you could try just throwing Vanilluxe into the box instead of say Jumpluff. Unfortunately, it requires you to use a water AND a colorless. Still you can be attacking T2 with the Mew you used See Off with, and the stall you put up can give you some time to charge up Mews to attack.

Will Vanilluxe see play? That’s debatable. Running it as the stage 2 is the “sub-par” version of the deck. Running it with Mew is all right, but Mew is really fragile. Still, it’s incredibly easy to paralyze. You just need 1 heads.

Like comedy, I’m just working in the Rules of Three. I’ve covered 3 options for Victini. Will Victini see play? Yeah, probably. Will decks that rely on Victini be popular, tier1 decks? I can’t really say, at least right now. Victini is really fragile, and with Catcher coming out, it’s debatable whether or not Victini will be able to sit safely on the bench. In a deck with Vileplume, Victini can sit safely on the bench, but with Catcher a staple in almost every deck, it will be difficult to keep Oddish or Gloom alive with cards like Donphan and Yanmega in format.

Even if Victini doesn’t see a lot of play due to Catcher and it’s general frailness, it is definitely one with an ability that is unlike any other. It also seems to have a full art, which is pretty cool, and will definitely be a collectors card.

These are my thoughts on Victini. I hope you liked it. I’m not sure if I’ll do more articles. Maybe. We’ll see. Also, be sure to keep checking back to One Hit KO! throughout the week for more guest articles. It’s a refreshing change to the site. It’s pretty cool.

This article is part of OneHitKO’s Guest Writer Week for August 2011. Please check out all the articles in the series, and please give the authors your feedback in the comment section below.

  1. Michael’s article about upcoming Japanese cards.
  2. Radu’s article about his Mew/Muk/Jumpluff/Vileplume deck and how it can be made better.
  3. Pooka introduces Worlds 2011.
  4. Alan’s article about how to run a Pokemon league.
  5. Jay. H takes a look at past formats of the game.
  6. Jordan’s article about running rogue decks and his worlds decklist.

Be sure to check back throughout the week for more great articles from our friends!

Category: Card Discussion | Tags: , , ,
  • Ed

    May I be the first to ask…

    Is there a fungus Amoonguss?

  • Anonymous

    good job picking up on the paralysis thing, that could be pretty cool coming up. 

    Just a note, those who were expecting Pooka’s article today might be luckier tomorrow.  Pooka’s been a little busier lately, so hopefully we can get the article out soon. 

    • It seemed like the most obvious combo. I mean there are plenty of other things, like simply, more damage, but I felt like a deck that can consistently paralyze will be a big threat, so I decided to talk about these instead of damage.