Cute but Deadly
Eeveelutions are adorable, but they can also pack a punch! Learn how to have fun and be competitive with these cute little guys.
03/11/2015 by Kamber Kirchmeier
This is my first article for 60cards.net, but I'm a 19 year old Rookie player of the Pokemon TCG. This wil be my third year of playing competitively with my greatest accomplishment being 51st at Texas States in 2014.
As a girl, I might be a little biased to playing a deck with Eeveelutions, but it has been my goal to make an Eevee deck that’s better than sub-par. In this article, I’m going to describe the different Team Plasma Eeveelutions and why some are played and the others are not. I’ll talk about the different Eevee decks I have put together, including the Flareon list I made bad on purpose. It is my belief that Eevees can be put in any deck, so I will also be talking about some random Eevee decks that I have wanted to build just to have some fun.
Energy Evolution Eevee
This Eevee’s Ability allows you to attach a basic energy from your hand. Then you may search your deck for the Eeveelution of the same type and evolve your Eevee. This card was what convinced me to build my first Eevee deck. The only way for Eevees to work is hitting hard and hitting fast. This Ability allowed a Leafeon to evolve first turn and quickly use Energy Crush. This is crucial against foes like Seismitoad that you need to quickly remove from the field. This Eevee however doesn’t help Flareon. You’re attaching DCEs most of the time which doesn’t allow you to use the Ability. Most Flareon decks don’t even run Fire energies. That’s why you may see the other Signs of Evolution Eevee in those decks.
Signs of Evolution Eevee
At 60 HP, this Eevee has 10 more HP than its Energy Evolution counterpart. Not only is it a little more resilient, but its first attack can be used to seek out Eeveelutions from your deck. This is what you’ll see in Flareon decks, so they can quickly obtain a Flareon to evolve their next turn. It still is unfortunate to waste a turn like that, but sometimes it may be your only option. This Eevee can also be useful in a straight Eevee deck, especially if you aren’t exactly sure what your opponent is running yet.
Let’s say your opponent starts with a Jirachi and nothing else. That Pokemon can be played in any deck, so you may not know what Eevee to evolve to. With Signs of Evolution, you can pick three different Eeveelutions from your deck to keep in hand until you decide which will be the best to beat your opponent’s deck.
I’m going to talk about them in the order they appear in the Plasma Freeze set, so let’s talk about Leafeon. With a base of 100 HP, this Stage 1 may seem a little low on HP to be so playable. Training Center helps an Eevee deck out tremendously with an extra 30 HP going a long way. Another reason Leafeon has been so playable is its first attack, Energy Crush. Its cost is one colorless energy, allowing it to fit into any deck. This attack is perfect in our current Meta because Energy Acceleration is huge right now. Decks like Fairies and Mega Manectric rely on getting lots of energy on the field early on. What makes Leafeon unique from other Pokemon like Mewtwo or Yveltal is the fact that energy on all your opponents’ Pokemon powers up this attack. This way, you don’t need to Lysandre the Pokemon with all the energy to do all the damage.
Another upside to Leafeon is its resistance to water. Minus 20 may not seem significance, but when you’re facing Seismitoad that little extra cushion really helps. And while we’re on the topic of Toad, that’s why Leafeon sees play in non-Eevee decks. Toad is weak to grass and it needs two energy to Quaking Punch. This makes Leafeon a heavy hitter and a great way to rid yourself of Toad.
If you are playing an Eevee-centered deck, Leafeon is still a great addition. I played Leafeon in my Plasma Eevees list for late game when energies were littering my opponent’s field. But what happens if I start with a Leafeon and there’s no energy to speak of? That’s where Leaf Blade becomes useful. In an Eevee deck, you’re probably playing the Energy Evolution Eevee, so with a grass energy attached you have a Leafeon. It wasn’t hard for me to get the double Colress Machine off first turn, allowing me to attack with Leaf Blade. With a coin flip, you have the potential to deal out 80 base damage. With four Deoxys EX on the bench and a Silver Bangle, there’s a potential of 150 and it wasn’t that hard to hit.
This is the pride and joy of Eevees. I am well known for building decks and making them worse so I can have more fun. A prime example of this was my Discard Flareon deck I made a while back. I used the classic Audino, Ditto, and Leafeon, but my favorite part was Cofagrigus. It’s a Stage 1 whose Ability allows me to knock it out and put three damage counters anywhere on my opponent’s Pokemon. Now that may not seem really great, but I paired it with Life Dew so my opponent wouldn’t get a prize (though sometimes it didn’t work out that well). Those extra three counters were especially beneficial against Donphan’s Robo Substitutes. I could knock out the active Sub and bring up something I actually wanted to attack.
Now back to Flareon. Even though his first attack Vengeance only requires two Colorless Energy, this in no way means he can fit in any deck. If you plan to play Flareon, the entire deck must be built around it. This attack does more damage for all your Pokemon in the discard, so don’t be afraid to Professor Juniper that hand away! Now 10 more damage per Pokemon may not seem like much, but most Flareon decks are running over 20 Pokemon, allowing for an easy OHKO on powerful EXs. Pairing Flareon with Pokemon like Exeggcute not only help to power up Vengeance, but its Propagate Ability can help out with Ultra Balls and Computer Searches.
Something to look out for though is Steel decks. You may think, they’re weak to fire so that’s perfect for Flareon, but watch out for Aegislash! You can’t attack it if you have attached a Double Colorless Energy to Flareon. Always run some basic energies just in case you run into this.
With a base HP of 110, Vaporeon has the highest HP of all the Eeveelutions, but that doesn’t mean it’s the most powerful. The first attack Refreshing Rain heals damage from all your Pokemon for one Colorless Energy, which I only found useful against Gourgeist (and even that was only beneficial for a couple of turns). The second attack packs a little more punch, doing 80 against EXs. It may not seem like a lot when most EXs are around 180 HP, but with some Deoxys on the bench and a Silver Bangle, it can easily OHKO Fighting EXs. That’s the only time I ever found Vaporeon even remotely useful. I ran two in my Plasma Eevee list, but almost always discarded them. There aren’t enough EXs weak to water in the Meta right now to make Vaporeon worth playing. The Energy cost is also one Water and one Colorless, so without Colress Machine it takes two turns to power up. Eevees are too low on HP to allow them to set for two turns without attacking. They rely on quick OHKOs.
After complaining about Vaporeon’s two energy cost attack, you might think that Glaceon is even worse. This Eeveelution only has 90 HP and takes one Water and two Colorless to hit for 60. Surprisingly, Glaceon was the MVP of my Plasma Eevee list. Not only does it look majestic, its Ability gives all Team Plasma Pokemon two less retreat cost. In my list, that gave everyone free retreat. This allowed me to easily switch between Eevees or even promote a Deoxys to stall a turn. I always had at least one Glaceon sitting the bench, even if I never attacked with it.
Now let’s talk about the attack. Three energies may seem daunting, but paired with Colress Machine and Thundurus EX, I hardly had trouble powering it up quickly. I could attack for up to 130 with Deoxys and Bangle, which sadly still didn’t give the OHKO against strong EXs. That usually meant leaving Glaceon to die in the active, unless I was lucky enough to keep my opponent Asleep. That little text won me games, allowing me to attack for the knockout my next turn. It’s certainly not a guarantee, but sometimes it was all I had.
Most of the time, I was using Glaceon against Donphan. It wasn’t hard to knock out Donphans and Phanpys, but I still had to deal with those darn Robo Subs. That’s where Deoxys would usually play a part, hitting for 30 and having enough HP to take a Donphan hit so I could promote Glaceon and finish the job. So my ruling would be only run Glaceon in a straight Plasma deck, otherwise it isn’t useful enough.
With a base HP of 90 and a weakness to Fighting, Jolteon never seemed very viable to me. It takes two turns to use its second attack, which only does 40 damage. The only reason I could see it played would be to combat Dark, but even 80 isn’t anywhere close to reaching the OHKO. And even though the attack doesn’t allow the Defending Pokemon to attack next turn, most Dark decks are running Darkrai which gives them free retreat anyway. Jolteon is easily knocked out and doesn’t pack enough punch to prove worthy of a spot in an Eevee deck, even a Plasma-based one.
Now even with all that said, I did play Jolteon a little in my Plasma list at first. I have also knocked things out with its first attack, Pin Missile. It’s a complete luck of the roll, but with some Deoxys it is possible to be worth trying. Pin Missile helped me win games by giving a quick Jirachi knockout early on, but I still wouldn’t recommend it if you’re going for a solid deck. But if you’re looking to have some fun, pair it with the Victory Star Victini and just try for the Pin Missile.
Espeon is my favorite of the Eevees which made me very disappointed in this card. It’s on the lower end with 90 HP, but only one retreat cost. I hardly even pay attention to their retreat cost since I’m always assuming if I promote it, it’s being knocked out before I’ll have the chance to retreat. Anyway, Espeon’s attacks only require one energy a piece, helping it out. The thing I love about Psy Alert is its one of those attacks that you use to draw cards, but it also does 20 damage. I actually forgot about that fact and accidentally did 120 damage to a Pumpkaboo when I was only trying to get some more cards in hand.
Its real attack named Shadow Ball does 40 to any of your opponent’s Pokemon, which is I call this Espeon the Sniper. I haven’t gotten around to it, but I really want to build a Super Snipe deck with Espeon and Bats. The entire point of the deck would be to kill low HP things on the bench to take my six prizes. I would probably run four Target Whistle to keep putting Exeggcutes or Jirachis for a quick win.
Unfortunately, I don’t think this Espeon is worth playing in a competitive deck. If you just want to have fun, build a deck and Snipe away. There just aren’t enough Meta decks right now that would take a heavy hit from Espeon right now to make it worth playing.
I wanted to put Umbreon in an Eevee list, but it just wasn’t possible. You only have four Eevees to evolve, so unless you’re planning on playing Revive to bring them back or something, there’s not a lot of room for Eevees that only sit the bench. Umbreon has 100 HP and its Ability gives all your Team Plasma Pokemon 20 more HP. This Ability is stackable, much like Deoxys, so with four on the bench, you could be adding 80 more HP to your Pokemon. Sadly, this still doesn’t fit well in an Eevee deck and I wouldn’t consider Umbreon’s attack very viable. For a Dark and two Colorless you’re only hitting for 70. It’s definitely not meant to be an attacker.
If your heart is set on playing Umbreon, my deck for you is a pairing with Weavile and Exeggcute. Weavile’s second attack Vilify does 30x all the Pokemon you discard from your hand. With four Exeggcute, you’re already doing 120. With Umbreon’s on the bench, Weavile will have enough HP to last a couple turns and get the knockout on stronger Pokemon. I haven’t tested the deck, but it’s one of those Eevee ideas I like.
So whether you’re building a deck for competition or just to have a good time, Eevees can be used. I would love to hear about other Eevee decks y’all have put together or even if you build one of these crazy decks I came up with. Eevees will always be dear to my heart and I will play them until I win or die trying.
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