Is It Playable? Blastoise Cold Flare

by coolestman22 ~ September 27th, 2012.

Hey OneHitKO people, it’s me, coolestman22, trying to get out another article because of the absence of our good friend, Pikkdogs. Today I will do another of my Is It Playable? articles where I review a somewhat controversial card from an upcoming set and try to determine whether it’s playable or not.

But you ask “What controversy is there around Blastoise?”. Well, remember back in the Summer of 2011 when Emboar had just come out and we were about to rotate to HS-on? Remember how everyone had said “ReshiBoar and MagneBoar are BDIF!”

I assume you also remember how wrong they were. Yes, MagneBoar did win Worlds, but only after a very poor U.S. Nationals performance. And ReshiBoar was never good. Never ever. Reshiram found a partner with Typhlosion Prime HS and Emboar BW 20 became the laughingstock of the Pokemon community. In fact, the best Emboar deck ever may have been the Foretress LA/Emboar deck that revolves around using Inferno Fandango to attach fires to Foretress and using its Poke-Body to hit for 20 against everything on the field.

Well, now that a fairly similar card is coming out we must once again ask ourselves “Is this actually good, or does it just look good on paper, like the last two?” Well, let’s look at Blastoise (again):

Blastoise – Water – HP140
Stage 1 – Evolves from Wartortle
Ability: Bursting Stream
As often as you like during your turn (before your attack), you may attach 1 [W] Energy card to 1 of your Pokemon. (This doesn’t use up your 1 Energy card attachment for the turn.)
[C][C][C][C] Hydro Pump: 60+ damage. This attack does 10 more damage for each [W] Energy attached to this Pokemon.
Weakness: Grass (x2)
Resistance: none
Retreat: 4

Well, let’s review the stats first: 140 HP is good, but it is still within OHKO range of Hydreigon DRX 97. Not something you want your Stage Two engine to have to deal with, but in BW-BoC I would assume it’s easier to set up an additional Stage Two.

The Weakness to grass is good. While it does mean it gets OHKOed by Virizion NVI with either Vileplume Freeze Bolt or an attack last turn, it also means that the Lightning attackers don’t hit it for weakness. This is why Kyogre EX was looked at as pish-posh by the community, because without the Lightning weakness it’s a very good card against Zekeels (I think John Roberts II proved this to some extent).

The No Resistance is fairly common. After all, what would the Resistance be on a water Pokemon? It might be fire in the VG, but in the TCG I don’t believe that has happened once (Except the random Quagsire or Swampert with the Lightning Resistance).

The Four retreat is less than optimal, but if you’re playing the variant with Keldeo EX that everyone is hyping, Keldeo’s Step In Ability will solve this problem for you.

The Ability, Bursting Stream, is pretty good. We have only had three other power/abilities like this ever. Blastoise Base Set had this as a Pokemon Power, and then Feraligatr Prime had a version of it that only attached to water types in HG/SS. Then, Emboar BW had a version that used fires that could go anywhere, and now the new Blastoise. Sure, there have been others like it (Blastoise ex, where you have Rain Dance but you put 10 damage where you dropped the energy, comes to mind), but these are the only four that I’ve heard of that have no drawbacks.

The Attack is probably the best ever from something with “Rain Dance”, which includes the Emboar. Being able to attack with Blastoise is a nice option to have, even though you generally only will against Sigilyph DRX.

Ability – Step In: Once during your turn, if this Pokemon is on your bench, you may switch it with your Active Pokemon.
CCC – Hydro Pump 50+
Does 20 more damage for each W energy attached to this Pokemon.

So, let’s move on to the question that’s on everyone’s mind: Is it playable?

Well, there were three main reasons that Emboar BW wasn’t playable:

The first was that with both ReshiBoar and MagneBoar you had to replace some energy almost every turn. Whether you used Blue Flare or Lost Burn, you were still using up energy, and at some points it could be fairly hard to replace. With the main partners people are playing Blastoise with, whether it’s Keldeo EX, Kyurem NVI, or even Wailord DRX, you don’t discard or lost zone energy to attack. While you may need to replace them due to a knockout or other reasons, you won’t need to every turn. With Emboar you did, and at some points in the game you missed your attack because of it.

The second was that Emboar had a retreat cost of four. Well, if you look at Blastoise’s retreat cost, it’s also four, so how do you solve this problem?

The answer is, of course, Keldeo EX’s Ability, Step In. Step In means that you can’t really Catcher-stall anything with

Blastoise, because the Keldeo you want attacking will always be able to attack providing there’s no Garbodor DRX with a tool on the field, at which point you aren’t in good shape anyway because you won’t be able to Rain Dance. But, there’s always a couple Tool Scrapper in most decks to counter Garbodor, and if you manage to get a Scrapper then you can again use Step In, and because of Skyla you will frequently be able to get a Scrapper in these sort of situations.

The third problem was Judge and N, which got rid of the energy from hand that Emboar would be attaching. At first you may think that there’s nothing that Blastoise can do about this, but remember Step In? If you play Musharna NXD your odds of drawing into a Supporter increase, and you will have more cards to look through to draw into an energy. While this doesn’t very effectively solve the problem, it still somewhat does. And not all Keldeo variants will play Musharna, but this would make it more of something to keep in mind while building any Keldeo variant. While this doesn’t completely solve the problem, it definitely does more than Emboar which had no answer to the problem other than having a higher retreat cost than Musharna.

Another thing to remember is that by solving problem one, you also somewhat solve problem three. By not needing to attach the energy, you don’t have the problem of needing to attach the energy. Unless your Keldeo just got knocked out and you need a replacement Keldeo, you won’t have to draw into energy right away off of the N. You can sit in topdeck mode a couple more turns while you Hydro Pump away, and when you draw the Bianca or Juniper or Bicycle you can play it and draw into what you need.

Another thing I want to take a brief look at why Feraligatr Prime was never good.

Well, you ask, why wasn’t it good? Well, it just never had a good partner. It never had a partner quite like Keldeo EX, and among the best it had were Lumineon MT, Lanturn Prime, and Blastoise UL. As you can see, none of those were particularly appealing to play, unlike Keldeo for Blastoise. As for Kyurem/Feraligatr, well, Kyurem was instead played in CaKE, because that was a faster option, and Kyurem was one of those things that you wanted attacking ASAP. In HS-NXD Kyurem saw a bit of play with Exp. Share when 30 HP Tynamo was the norm, and that was considered a better way to play it than Feraligatr.

Blastoise will have a better partner right off the bat in Keldeo, and it will also see some play with Kyurem NVI (Although I would prefer the Ether/Exp. Share variant or the Dusknoir variant) and possibly even Wailord DRX and Fliptini.

So I do think Blastoise will be good, however that doesn’t necessarily mean it will be. This hasn’t been a good game mechanic since Base Set, but I guess everything is good at some point.

What do you guys think of Blastoise? All discussion is welcomed in the comments below, and thanks for reading!

Category: Is It Playable? | Tags: , ,
  • coolestman22

    Seriously? No comments yet?

    • Ed

      You should know, Coolestman, we get plenty of readers, but few real comments.

      This is obviously good info, and I can tell people are reading it. I guess people just don’t take the time to say thanks!

      Anyway, THANKS, cm22!

      • coolestman22

        I would have expected Balasar to have said something.

        And you’re welcome!

  • Blastoise will be BDIF for Cities. With Landorus EX killing off Darkrai and Eels, there isn’t even a real competitor for the position either. Maybe Raticate/Amoongus or Ninetales/Amoongus.

    • coolestman22

      What about Dusknoir decks?

      And sure, Lando EX kills off Darkrai and Eels, but Blastoise kills off Landorus.

  • Well my Emboar deck is fairing good due to Entei Ex that allows me to atch a (F) from graveyard to one of my bench pokemon, And I only really use Resh/Zek for the outrage atk. Every so often I will use resh blue flare for 120 atk. But I ether Switch and bring entei out to boost my Bench back up or energy retrieval my 2 (F) and Fandango them.

    I just started playing Pokemon TCG about 2 months ago and I know how much Emboar Would suck with the old cards, but with so many new ones to help out I think he has climbed the ranks in my opinion. I do not run a tool scarper but I can always catcher a Garbodor and OHK it with a mewtwo Ex. I run a 3-1-3 Emboar but I been thinking of running a 2-1-2 and adding 2 other atkers.

    Also you got to keep in mine the Garbodor ability if you ever face him with the blastoise deck. Ypu can only run a max of 4 tool scrapers and in a Garbodor deck you tend to have more then 4 tools. But the catcher kill will help out a lot. SO the main problem is his weakness to grass. So far water has not been making much of a splash cuz of the weakness to lightning. But with with a Serperior royal heal deck with renoncules things can go bad real fast. 2 or 3 Serperior with at least one renoncules tomove damage around. You can heal 20 to 30 damage inbetween turns. And there are also postions and if you ever get close to getting Ko you can move all damage to renoncules and then max potion him.

    So in all I am still not convinced Blastoise will make a big hit untill he gets more supports like Entei for fire or Dark patch for dark pokemon and even gardevoir with its Psychic Mirage ability. I am just excited to see Blastoise in a card again. Last time I saw him I was in the 5th grade. lol

    • coolestman22

      Emboar will never be very good. Entei is better by itself.

      He probably hasn’t, as while he has gained some options, N just hurts it so much (N is a 4-of in every single deck right now)

      Garbodor is a legitimate threat and I do know I will have to deal with it, but you say you don’t run any Tool Scrapper and you’re suggesting I run 4 in a similar deck? I don’t think I can agree with that.

      Yes, you can OHKO Garbodor with Mewtwo, but if they set up 2 Garbodor that doesn’t work. I think most Garbodor players are catching on to that, as I certainly am.

      Water can always use Terrakion NVI to counter Lightning.

      There are currently no metagame decks based around Serperior. If such a deck as you described did appear, Catchering out Reuniclus and using either Blastoise or Keldeo’s attack will result in a KO’d Reuniclus and it will take time to set up a new one.

      Blastoise was a metagame deck in Japan during this format [BW-FB/CF (Equivalent to BoC)], the only thing different about it is their tournament structure, which hinders lock decks. So unless Blastoise doesn’t work against lock decks (Such as Garbodor or Stoutland), Blastoise should be a legitimate deck.

      The thing about Blastoise is that he already has all his support. His attacking options are better than Emboar’s, and Step In will make it so that Blastoise can never just be Catchered out to stall.

      • Well I never atk with Emboar I just use his abilitty. I won a tournament with the Emboar deck yesterday so I don’t think he is that bad. But I understand what your saying. I didn’t mean to offend you or make you feel bad about your article. I liked it don’t get me wrong, and with pokemon it is always a Rcok, Paper, scissors. You can’t win them all. My main goal when I play is to power up my ex pokemon as fast as I can. and like I said I don’t run a tool scrapper in my deck becasue it is not that big of a problem for me. If I can use inferno fandango to power up one ex in one turn then its ok with me. The only time I take full advantage of the ability is when I play a DCL on mewtwo ex and then feed him fire for OHKO every turn after.

        I am not saying Emboar is the best, but I like the way he is running in my deck. And don’t get me wrong I will porb look into making a Bastoise deck once it comes out but with thunder being a big thing as it is now I have not giving much though into making a water deck.

        But like I said I didn’t mean to offend you or make you upset. I am not saying your ideas suck or you don’t know what your talking about. I am sorry if you felt like I thought anything bad about you. I was just giving my opinion and hopping we could discus deck ideas. I did say I do not run a tool scrapper but I also said that Pokemon catcher and OHKO will solved that problem. I have noticed that people do run more then one Garbodor so tool scrapper will only help you on that one turn and you got to act fast when you can use your ability’s to turn things around because Garbodor decks run more then 4 tools. (I have a Garbodor also) so chances are they will just attach another tool the next turn. That is why in my own opinion, I am not speaking about no one else, I would rather Catcher Kill Garbodor then disable him for one turn.

        I usually never comment on post because I don’t want to offend no one but you said no one commented on your article and I thought it would be nice to share ideas. Anywasy great article none the less and keep on enjoying Pokemon!

        • Ed

          Note that the two main Pokemon mentioned in the article (Blastoise and Keldeo EX) are weak to grass (not lightning).

          Definitely keep commenting. I totally get what you mean about being worried about how your comment gets perceived, but don’t worry about it. That’s what discussion is for. It makes it more interesting. Nobody should take offense when we’re offering legit discussion. We know you’re not flaming just to make someone mad.


          • Well one thing I always like to think about is how will my deck be defeated. Like the article stated about kyogre ex weakness was its big downfall that is why Kyurem Ex (NV 34) is a better water in my opinion. His weakness is steal and the only steal decks I have seen are the deck out decks (MIll) with Durant (NV) 83 and Aggron (DE) 80. So I feel like Kyurem Ex will grow in popularity especially seeing how you could hit all opponent bench for 30 and could do 60 to the active hi he is weak to water. Funny thing is the more I talk about Blastoise the more I want to build a deck around him.

          • coolestman22

            Kyurem EX is from Next Destinies and is the one that discards special energy, just FYI. The one that spreads is from NVI.

        • coolestman22

          Of course you don’t attack with Emboar, I don’t think anyone would. What I meant was that Entei is better without a clunky Stage Two line.

          What tournament did you win? What age division are you in? (If you’re a Junior, don’t read the older articles).

          Of course you didn’t mean to make me feel bad, you didn’t. You gave me constructive criticism and I am responding to it because my opinion is otherwise. We’re not cussing each other out, we’re trying to help each other.

          I wouldn’t say Pokemon is like Rock-Paper-Scissors, but there are aspects of it which are.

          Just using EX’s isn’t necessarily a good strategy. What you should do is use 1-2 EX’s and then use Reshiram BWs to take a few prizes. If you go aggro EX, there will be a time when your opponent will be able to super-charge a Mewtwo and OHKO you, and you may or may not have a response.

          Blastoise and Keldeo are both weak to Grass, as Ed pointed out, so if you plan on playing them you shouldn’t have any problem with Eel decks. Unless you pair Blastoise with Kyogre EX or Wailord you should be fine.

          You shouldn’t necessarily say that Garbodor decks will always manage to get a new tool. A decent amount of the time they won’t. Without Junk Arm in format we don’t have as good of a chance to get the specific Trainer we want. It’s still likely, but with a well-timed N especially there’s a chance that the tool won’t come back.

          What I’m saying is that people try to set up more than one Garbodor. If they have two Garbodor on the field there’s not much Catcher can do for you.

          I am glad you commented, and I hope you keep doing so in the future. I don’t think you would offend anyone if you use the slightest bit of common sense, which you appear to be doing.