The Top 10 Impactful Cards of Emerging Powers

by Pikkdogs ~ August 19th, 2011.

Hey all you OHKOers!  Yes, it is finally time for Pikkdogs to release his list of the top 10 impactful cards of the next set.

Emerging Powers is your 2nd Black and White Set.  It is made up of cards that were in the Japanese Black and White sets, along with cards from the “Battle Strength Decks” and random Promotional cards.  A lot of people are a little upset about this set because the current Japanese set seems to be a lot better than our Emerging Powers set.  But, there are some good and impactful cards in this set. It is not one of the better sets we have seen in a while, but at least it’s better than Call of Legends.  The thing I hate most about this set is that there is that it has another rare Unfezant that is useless.  It seems like I pulled just about all of the BW Unfeazants, and now I feel like I’m about to get 150 more crappy Unfezants.  But enough about my hatred of Unfeazant, let’s take a closer look at the set to get at the best cards.

Honorable Mention (#12) Thundurus

Our first honorable mention of the countdown is Thundurus.  Thundrus has 110 HP, a 1 retreat, and a fighting weakness.  It’s first attack, “Charge” lets you attach a lightning energy from your deck to this Pokemon. Its second attack, “Disaster Bolt”, does 80 damage for LLC and a one energy discard.

At this moment I do not really see Thundurus as a great Pokemon in the modified format.  Some people have been talking about Thundurus being a secondary attacker in a Zekrom deck, but I don’t see that either.  It is OHKOable by Donphan Prime, and it takes 2 turns in the active spot to get charged up.  Perhaps later next year if Donphan Prime gets rotated this card could become good, but right now it’s too fragile and too slow.

Honorable Mention (#11) Cheren

Cheren is a supporter that lets you draw 3 cards.  It is kind of like Cheerleaders Cheer, except your opponent does not get the option of drawing 1 card.  I think this is a pretty good card and will see decent play.  If Cheerleaders Cheer were not in the format I think this card would be ranked around #6.  The reason why it is not is because this card will only replace C.C.  If a deck does not run C.C. they will not decide to run Cheren.  Cheren will just be switched in to decks that currently run C.C.  If I thought Cheren was a huge set above C.C. I would asl put it in, but it doesn’t seem to be that much better.

The format right now is really draw/hand referesh supporter heavy.  Cheren comes into a format where Professor Juniper, Professor Oak’s New Theory, and Judge are used a lot.  Cheren is really not in a position to challenge any of these supporters.  I don’t think that Cheren will see a lot more play then Cheerleaders Cheer has, just about the same.  For that reason although Cheren is a good card, it is not very impactful.

#10- Leavanny #7

At first glance Leavanny does not seem like a very impactful card.  It is a stage 2 Grass Pokemon with 130 HP, a fire weakness, and a 1 retreat cost.  Its second attack, “X-scissor” does 30 damage for GC and lets you flip a coin, if heads you can do 50 more damage.  But this card is possibly impactful because of it’s first attack.  “Nurturing” lets you search your deck for a Pokemon that evolves from one of the Pokemon on your bench, and put it on that Pokemon.  The current rules for this type of attack only allow you to place the next evolution line on the benched Pokemon.  This means that you can only go from basic to stage 1, not basic to stage 2 (even though the stage 2 does evolve from the basic).

This means that Leavanny is like a Spiritomb Ar with the “Darkness Grace” like attack.  This attack does not seem to great coming from a stage 2, but if put in the Lost Zone, Mew Prime can use “Nurturing.”  I’m not sure if this is a great startegy with Mew, but it does make it faster to evolve Vileplume, and Vileplume will be very important in the next season.  I am not sold on this card, but it could be somewhat impactful. 

#9-  Swanna

Swanna is a card that has received no hype, but it is good because it is a Donphan counter.  For WCC you can do 70 damage and a discard, with the “Air Slash” attack.  This makes it a pretty good Donphan counter.  Its stats are not all that great.  It has 90 HP, a 1 retreat cost, and a lightning weakness.

This will not be a great card, but if you need a Donphan counter, this card will take it out in one hit.  It also uses DCE, so it hits well into decks that already use that card.

#8- Recycle

Recycle is a simple Item card.  It lets you flip a coin, if you get heads you can put 1 card from your discard pile to the top of your deck.

This is not a great card considering the card does not go to your hand, and you have to flip.  But, this format is seriously thin on recovery cards.  If you do not use a supporter, you cannot get back evolution cards without Recycle.  I could see a lot of people running at least 1 Recycle since you can re-use it when needed with Junk Arm.

It will not change the format, but I think it will see some play initially.  When we get some better recovery cards you probably will never see this card, but I think a lot of Battle Roads decks will run at least 1 Recycle.

#7- Tornadus

Tornadus is a Donphan counter.  It has 110 HP, a 1 retreat cost,a resistance to fighting, and a weakness to lightning. Its first attack, “Energy Wheel”, lets you move an energy from your bench to Tornadus.  This attack doesn’t seem great, but it does work well with Manaphy.  You can use Manaphy’s attack to refresh your hand, then retreat and move the energy to Tornadus.  His second attack does 80 damage for CCC and you must move an energy from Tornadus to a benched Pokemon.

The good thing about Tornadus is that unlike the other BW high HP Pokemon, it can use DCE.  It can also benefit from Emboar BW.  Tornadus’s main job is to stop Donphan Prime, which it can do.  Donphan can only do 40 damage to it with “Earthquake”, and Tornadus can 2HKO it.  Tornadus can be used in almost every deck, and fits well into a Reshiboar or any deck with DCE.

#6- Beartic #30

Beartic is one of the cards that has received a lot of hype since its Japanese release.  I for one am not drinking the Beartic Kool-Aid (and not just because upon searching for the card on Google I once stumbled on a gay pornography site), I just don’t think that it can make a good consistent deck in this format, but I have been wrong in the past.

Beartic is a 130 HP Water Pokemon with a weakness to metal.  His first attack costs WCC, is named “Sheer Cold”, and does 50 damage and prevents the defending Pokemon from attacking next turn.  Its second attack, “Icicle Crash”, does 80 damage for WWCC. 

Now not allowing the defending Pokemon to attack is really useful.  It will not be as good against Yanmega since it has free retreat, but it is harder to retreat Pokemon like Magnezone, Reshiram, Zekrom, and Donphan.  I could see a lot of people running this card in a BR deck.  I’m still not sold on it being a great card, but I think it will be impactful in the short term. But the lesson we learned today about Beartic is that if you do a Google search for the card make sure to spell the name of the card right, awful things can happen if you don’t.

#5- Great Ball

The #5 card is Great Ball…………..well sort of.  Great Ball was a card that I knew from the LA set that let you search your deck for a basic and put it straight to your bench.  This card was fairly good until most decks used Pokemon like Uxie, Mesprit, Azelf, Crobat G, and Chatot G that had coming into play Poke-Powers.  But this card is not your father’s Great Ball, it is actually your father’s Master Ball.

The text on this Great Ball allows you to look at the top 7 cards of your deck and grab a Pokemon you find there.  If this card came out a year ago I would not even consider running this card.  We had other trainer/item cards like Pokedex, Luxury Ball, Premier Ball, and Bebe’s Search that let you get the cards you wanted fairly easily.  Now a days those trainer/item cards are all gone, all we have is Dual Ball which only works on basic Pokemon and requires a flip.

If you have a deck that has about 20 Pokemon in it, and a lot of them are Legend Pieces or Evolution cards, then this card would work fairly well.  If you are just running a Yanmega deck, your proabably will not look twice at this card.  But, I could see this card being used throughout the time that it is in the format.  It will not be a staple card, but I could see it being used in some decks.  

#4- Crushing Hammer

Our #4 card is Crushing Hammer, which is again just a reprint of another card from our past.  This time it is a reprint of Energy Removal 2.  The text is simple, you flip a coin, and if heads you can discard an energy attached to any of your opponent’s Pokemon.

Now we have a similar card in the format, “Lost Remover”.  Lost Remover also lets you take an energy away from any of your opponent’s P0kemon.  But there are three differences; the first is that thre is no flip involved, the second is that Lost Remover only works on Special Energies, and the third is that energies that have been removed by Lost Remover go to the Lost Zone while Crushing Hammer puts them in the discard.  These differences are very significant.

A lot of people have complained about Pokemon Reversal because it was a very powerful card that required a flip.  If you weren’t happy about that, you probably won’t be happy about Crushing Hammer.  It will be frustrating having a game come down to a coin flip (because that is what removing an energy can do, especially in a format with Pokemon Catcher), but that is what I think will be happening.  Crushing Hammer is much more playable than Lost Remover thanks to the fact that it works on all energies.  I know that I was very skeptical of using Lost Remover because I never knew for sure if it was going to be useful.  You now know that Crushing Hammer will be useful because every deck plays energies of some kind.  The difference in where the energies go is not very substantial because it is hard to get Special Energies back from the discard pile anyway.  The chances are that it will not matter whether you put a DCE in the Lost Zone or the discard pile, your opponent will most likely never get it back.

So after all that discussion do I think it will see some play, yes I do.  I am not sure how much play it will receive, but I’m sure it will at least be in disruption decks.  I could also see it becoming a staple, with Junk Arm being so popular.

#3- Gothitelle #47

The only actual Pokemon to be in the top 5 is Gothitelle.  It has 130 HP, a 2 retreat cost, and a weakness to psychic.  Its ability, “Magic Room”, prevents your opponent from play item cards when Gothitelle is active.  Its attack, “Mad Kinesis” does 30 damage for CCC, and will do 20 more damage for each psychic energy attached.

Decks next season will be unbeliebably trainer heavy, so having a trainer lock will be amazing.  I think trainer lock will be perhaps the best strategy in the next format, but I do not see Gothitelle in those plans.  I think that Vileplume is the way to go.

Even though Gothitelle does not item lock you, it does restrict the amount of damage you can do.  You will never realistically get 3 Psychic energies on it, and if you do that still will not even be 100 damage.  Realistically you are looking at a Psychic and a DCE on Gothitelle by turn 3, this means that your opponent has probably already setup and will probably be able to knock out Gothitelle. This is why I favor Vileplume, you can still attack with whatever Pokemon you want to attack with and have the item lock on.

But a lot of people are eying Gothitelle as a deck worthy card.  You will have the ability to have an item lock, while still use items yourself.  This means you can slow them down by not letting your opponent use Rare Candy, and then Pokemon Catcher up a basic to knock it out.  I think this card will see play early in the season and I think it will see play later, possibly 2 seasons from now when it gets a proper supporting Pokemon to go with it. 

#2- Max Potion

The second to the most impactful card in this set is Max Potion.  This card lets you remove all damage counters and energies on any one of your Pokemon.  While removing the energies is not good, it does work well with low energy attackers like Yanmega and Donphan Prime.

The Stage 1 Rush deck gets a lot better in this set because of trainers like Max Potion.  It is very hard to OHKO Donphan Prime, now with Max Potion most decks can only hope to 3HKO it.

I have tested this card, and although it is very hard to get the card when you really need it, it still is an amazing card.  The only problems I have with this card is that it increases your reliance on trainers and it along with Pokemon Catcher hurt the consistency of decks by making less room for cards like Professor Elms Training Method and Pokemon Communication.

Despite these weaknesses, I think I can still say that this card will see a lot of play and become a staple in a lot of decks.  This card will live up to the hype that people are giving it.

#1- Pokemon Catcher

Of course the most impactful card of this set is Pokemon Catcher.  Heck, Catcher is the most impactful new card since Garchomp C.  Not only will it be a staple, but it will change the way that people play the game.  Of course, like Crushing Hammer, Pokemon Catcher is a reprint of a card that was formally in the modified format.  That card was called Gust of Wind.  Pokemon Catcher is just like Pokemon Circulator in the effect that you get to change your opponent’s active, but this time you can choose which Pokemon gets switched in.

This dyanmic creates a lot scenarios.  You can bring up something that has a high retreat and then attack your opponents bench.  You can bring up something that has a high retreat and then attempt to mill your opponent’s deck.  You can also bring up techs and knock them out before they can serve their purporse.  Or, you can bring up a basic Pokemon and knock it our before it comes a scary stage 2 Pokemon.

I wish I could say more about this card, but all I can say that it is huge.  Catcher will be one of the most important cards in the format.  It will help usher in the rise of Vileplume and item lock, and it will see a lot of success in tournaments.  Pokemon Catcher is kind of like SP Pokemon in the fact that you either have to play it or play against it (item lock).

A lot of people are against Pokemon Catcher, but although it will be very impactful, it will not be bad for the game.  Because the format is relatively slow, it is hard to get Catcher when you need it.  This means that as long as each player is prepared  by either playing 3-4 catchers or playing Vileplume, the game will not be unbalanced. 

Overview of the Impactfullness of Emerging Powers.

Unlike Black and White, there are no big Pokemon in this set to build your deck around.  But, that does not mean that this set is not impactful.  Just one card can change the format around, and that is what we got with Pokemon Catcher.  It may not turn the game on its side, but Catcher will be in all non item lock decks.

Besides Catcher, cards like Crushing Hammer, Great Ball, Max Potion, and Recycle could be very impactful in this trainer heavy format.  And although I do not think they are the best cards, Pokemon like Beartic and Gothitelle could see play in some moderately successful decks.  This set may not be the best, but I would say thanks to Pokemon Catcher this set is very impactful. Feel free to leave your top 10 in the comment box.

So long and thanks for all the fish.

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