A Very Special Pikkdogs Pikks Three: Vanilluxe, Unown (Cure), and Steelix Prime.

by Pikkdogs ~ December 5th, 2011.

A big hello to all you OHKOers out there.  This is Pikkdogs and his extra-dimensionary sidekick Pedro here with a Pikk Three article.  If you couldn’t guess it from the title, this Pikk Three has a theme.

Like a Prom?

Well kind of.

Can the theme be “Springtime in Paris?”

How could that be a theme for a Pokemon article? There are no French Pokemon.

I guess so.  If there were French Pokemon I would bet they all would have  no attacks and the “Surrender” Ability. 

Probably. As I was trying to say a while ago, this Pikk Three article has a theme.  The  theme today is “Special Conditions.”  All three of our cards have something to do with special conditions.  Vanilliuxe can paralyze the defending Pokemon, Unown can remove Special Conditions, and Steelix Prime is untouchable by them.  Special conditions were never really that big in Pokemon outside of Pre-Releases, so its nice to see them actually seeing competitve play.  So before we offend any other nationality, let’s procede to the article.

Card #1-Vanilluxe-Noble Victories

Description– Vanilluxe is a stage 2 Water Pokemon with 130 HP. a Metal weakness, and a 2 retreat cost.  It has two attacks.  The first attack, “Double Freeze,” costs WC and lets you flip 2 coins.  If you get 1 heads the attack does 40 damage and parlyzes the defending Pokemon, if you get 2 heads it does 80 damage and paralyzes.  The second attack, “Frost Breath”, does 60 damage for WW. 

Analysis-  Let’s start out with the stats. 130 is fairly good for a stage 2, nothing great but nothing bad either.  The metal weakness isn’t bad but with Kyurem doing so well, people are bound to play Scizor Prime or Steelix Prime at some point.  The 2 retreat cost is average.  The first attack is workable and the second is fairly average.

Vanilluxe was released in the Noble Victories set and has seen some play in its short time in the format.  It has seen play in a deck of its own with Vileplume as its partner, it has also seen play in Mewbox.  It even won a City Championship here in Michigan, so the young card has tasted victory already. 

 As mentioned Vanilluxe is still a very new card, yet it has come to be known as the card that has brought back special conditions to releveance.  Until recently, many of the best players didn’t know what exactly happened under Paralysis or Confusion, thanks to no good cards having these effects.  Now with cards like Vanilluxe, special conditions are back. 

Vanilluxe is not a great Pokemon alone but with the help of Vileplume and Victini, the Vanilluxe deck is making its way up to the top tiers.  Victini is of course used for his “Victory Star” ability, which let’s the attacker re-flip if he/she so chooses.  With the help of Victini it is very unlikely that you will ever not paralyze your opponent with “Double Freeze.”  Vileplume is there to make paralsyis hard to get rid of.  If there were no item lockds the opponent could stock up on Full Heal or Switch to get out of paralysis.  So with Victini and Vileplume, Vanilluxe is a deck that you should watch out for. 

Personally, I go back and forth with Vanilluxe.  For some decks the trainerlock and paralysis combo will be too much to deal with.  But for others, they can adjust and take out Vanilluxe fairly easily.  Vanilluxe really only will average about 60 damage per turn, which is not that good.  If you can break the paralysis lock a couple of times, (with things like Unown Cure) you should be able to beat Vanilluxe easily.  The deck also is fairly slow and vulnerable early in the game.   

Final Rating8/10- I expect big things from Vanilluxe in the future.  Even though I think that people will successfully tech against it if it becomes very popular, for right now it seems very hard to beat.  Even if people are successful in teching against it, it should be a popular rogue choice in the next couple seasons. 

Card #2- Unown (Cure)

Description– Unown Cure is a 50 HP basic Psychic Pokemon with a psychic weakness and a 1 retreat cost.  Its attack, “Hidden Power”, only does 10 damage for one psychic energy.  Its Poke-Power is called “Cure”, and it allows you to remove all Special Conditions from your active Pokemon when you play Unown from your hand to your bench. 

Analysis– Unown Cure was probably mostly used as a proxy for Unown R last format, but now it is actually seeing play because of Vanilluxe.  It would be easy for any deck to tech in one Full Heal into their deck to get rid of paralysis, and then just Junk Arm it when needed.  But, because most special conditions deck play Vileplume, items are useless in this situation.  What is needed is a Pokemon that can heal special conditions, that is Unown Cure. 

Even though Unown can do something most Pokemon cannot do, it still is a tough play.  That is because of two major reasons.  One reason is that it only works once.  Since “Cure” can only be played when Unown is played to the bench, if you want to use “Cure” again you are going to have to also run Seeker to pick him back up.  Another reason is that if you start with Unown it will be an easy prize for your opponent. It only has 50 Hp so most Pokemon will be able to knock it out really easily, so if it ever hits the field when Vileplume is not in play, look for the opponent to use Pokemon Catcher on it to get  an easy knock out. 

Final Rating7/10- I wish there were some other way to get rid of Special Conditions during item lock, but there are not that many ways.  Unown Cure is probably the simplest way.  It will force you to play at least 1 Seeker, but those 2 cards might be enough to turn the tide in a Vanilluxe matchup. 

Card #3- Steelix Prime

Description– Steelix is a stage 1 Metal Pokemon with 140 HP, a fire weakness,a psychic resistance, and a whopping 4 retreat cost.  It has the “Perfect Metal” Poke-Body which makes it invulnerable to Special Conditions. It has two attacks. The first attack, “Energy Stream”, does 30 damage for CC, it also lets you attach an energy from the discard pile to Steelix.  The third attack, “Gaia Crush”, does 100 damage for MMCCC, and let’s you discard any Stadium in play if you so choose. 

Analysis– Well, let’s start with the stats. 140 is great for a stage 1, only Wailord can trump that number.  The Poke-Body is great for a format that could be rich in Vanilluxe and Chandelure.  The first attack isn’t great, but does work great with the second attack.  With “Energy Stream,” “Gaia Crush” should be easy to use and very powerful. 

Steelix has seen some play in the past.  It came out in the Unleashed set, and instantly was put into a rogue deck.  It had Blissey Platinum around to help heal it.  With Blissey and Poke Healer +, Steelix was a very hard deck to beat.  However, the deck was done in by Blaziken FB Lv.X and the popular SP decks of the time.  It did see a little play after that but not much.  Play stopped after the rotation of July 2011, until the Ross Deck was perfected.  At fall regionals this year, Ross Deck was played with Steelix and did fairly well.  It never really caught on thanks to the popularity of Reshiram.  But, now that special conditions are back in the format Steelix might start to see more play. 

The main weakness of this card is of course the fire weakness.  With Reshiram being one of the most played decks, it is hard to reccoemend Steelix Prime to anybody.  The fire weakness hurts this card very much.  It does work well in the Ross Deck and is very fun to play, but it is just very hard to overcome the fire weakness. 

Final Rating7.5/10– It has been a good card for a while, but will now be the time that it takes the leap to being a great card?  I just can’t say that with Reshiram being so popular.  However, if Vanilluxe matches Reshiram in the amount of play seen, Steelix Ross will be a great deck.

So that’s all we got for today.  What do you have for us today Pedro?

Well, another reminder to get your donations ready for the Onehitko.com challenge.  That should be something pretty fun.  

Did you know Pedro that in his last article Ed revealed that he and his wife are about to have their 4th kid.   

I did notice that. By kid, you don’t mean baby goat do you?

No. I’m talking about an infant human.  Big congrats go out to Ed.

Why should we congratulate Ed, all he did was have sex?  I assume his wife is doing most of the heavy lifting?

I suppose so.  Anyway, congrats to the Mandy family our thoughts are prayers are with you guys. 


You share the same sentiment?

No, I was saying the name of a random Pokemon. 

Okay, good night everybody.


Category: Pikks Three | Tags: , , ,