11/13/2019 by Jimmy Pendarvis
Hello everyone! I am happy to be putting out articles a bit more consistently now, and having some interesting topics to cover has made that even more enjoyable. In my last article, I talked all about Pikachu & Zekrom GX (TM; 33) , one of the strongest decks in the format and my personal favorite. The deck had a strong showing yet again in Knoxville and I would not expect that to change at the next standard format tournament, the Latin American International Championships. I surprised even myself when I found myself sleeving up a Mewtwo & Mew GX (UB; 71) deck the night before the event after playing just two games with the deck. I had been playing all night with Pikachu & Zekrom GX (TM; 33) , and while the results were not bad, I was not confident in what list was best for the deck. Additionally, fitting techs for everything felt hard and it slowed the deck down a bit, while I felt like I was fitting everything I wanted in the Mewtwo list I ended up playing for the event. I finished top 32 after losing my last two rounds, both of which were win and ins for top 8, but it is certainly an improvement from my miserable performance at Atlantic City. I am still not a fan of the standard format, so just getting a placement at all felt like a relief. I am looking forward to the expanded format tournaments I have coming up, and I hope to talk more about that next week, but for now I will be reviewing Cosmic Eclipse! I always try to avoid getting ahead of myself and looking at cards too far in advance, so my first time seeing them was when I took a look at everything so I could write this review. I was surprised at how many cards felt like they could be usable, and even more surprised at how many cards felt like they will definitely be played to some degree. That being said, I have picked out the cards I feel have the most potential and i'm ready to share my thoughts on them. Lets jump right into things.
Unfortunately for Venusaur fans at home, this is not a card I would expect to see play any time soon. Fire Pokemon have a huge presence right now, and I don't think that any grass Pokemon could overcome that due to that glaring fire weakness. However, this is a strong card that I think has a lot of playability potential down the line. Even with the introduction of Great Catcher, gust effects are at a huge low point when compared to cards like Lycanroc GX (GRI; 138) and Guzma (BUS; 115) .
I am more confident in Blastoise & Piplup-GX than I am in Kyogre, but the Kyogre might be used as a way of accelerating energy onto Blastoise & Piplup. However, the reliable Naganadel + Quagsire engine is still around and simply waiting for a good partner. I plan to try Blastoise & Piplup with those Pokemon because that will make the deck a little bit faster, and both of Blastoise & Piplup's attacks have synergy with Quagsire. A deck like this will let you capitalize on the fire meta and the healing factor will help you keep up with Malamar.
Dedicated Dance allows you to draw three cards if 1 of your Pokemon was Knocked Out during your opponent's last turn. This is nice Reset Stamp (UB; 206) protection, and decks that often have Pokemon knocked out can get even more value out of it. The opponent can target it down with Great Catcher the turn they are using reset stamp, but then you should at least have an attacker ready to go. It's attacks aren't great, so it would be strictly for the ability. That being said, I expect this card to see a lot of play.
This card is not going to be slammed into every deck, but it does have it's uses. This card will be used in defensive decks that like to abuse Lt. Surge's Strategy (UBO; 178) , such as Pidgey. This will make the lock a lot more consistent, being able to search out the supporters you need and control your opponent's prize count is no joke. The mirror match will be interesting since players can repeatedly kill their own Magneton to gain and deny access to Lt. Surge's Strategy (UBO; 178) .
Honestly I think this card is very over hyped, and that is why I decided to talk about it today. Both of it's attackers are super underwhelming as 120 damage is not a lot and almost every other GX attack is going to be more impactful than a 120 snipe. On top of that, it only has 200 HP, so it is pretty reliant on it's ability for protection. It's ability says it can't be attacked by Tag Team Pokemon, Ultra Beasts, and Pokemon with Special Energy attached to them. Malamar (FLI; 51) and really any other deck that does not get shut down by this ability seems like a big problem for our cat friend. Almost every deck has some way of getting around this already, and Power Plant makes it so any deck can just play a couple of those down and repeatedly knockout Persians. I would stay away from this card for the time being.
This card is very interesting to me, but it does seem a little tough to get going. It might be better in expanded where you can load it up a lot quicker, but you have to be careful because of how good the other decks are in expanded. In a vacuum, this card seems super solid. I love the attacks it has, Ultimate Ray is like a crazy Full Blitz, and the GX attack is something you can use early to set yourself up for the rest of the game. Fairy is also only played in the form of Gardevoir & Syleveon, which I expect to be played less and less as time goes on, but we will have to see how things go.
This card is very good and everyone should know that by now. It isn't perfect, but pretty much no card or deck is absolutely full proof. I don't see this being great against Malamar (FLI; 51) as a Mew (UBO; 76) shuts down the GX attack completely and the regular attack is not anything special. This means you are usually going to be trading 3 prizes for 2, which is not a great trade. The meta has yet to develop though, and we will have to see how decks are built. Against other GX Pokemon, this card is an absolute beast. I don't see a world in which it isn't favored in the prize trade, which is a huge upside to this card.
This card is super splashable in every deck, and I expect it to be in pretty much every deck just like it is in Japan. It can punish players who just slap down GX Pokemon, so decks and players will have to adapt to that accordingly. Even just playing one copy in your deck will leave the opponent with something to think about and play around the entire game. Some decks are going to have an easier time than others, but I consider this card to be one of the most immediately impactful cards in the set. I am excited to see how deck building changes moving forward.
This is another Pokemon to come out of the set that isn't really an attacker, and just a support Pokemon. Unlikely Oriocrio and Magneton, Silvally-GX does have a usable attack that you might consider using in some situations, but it is very underwhelming and should not be considered a main option. What attracts people to this card is it's ability, which is draw cards until you have five cards in your hand. The game has just had Zebstrika (LT; 82) since Octillery, a previous fan favorite, had rotated out. Silvally is a little bit safer than Zebstrika (LT; 82) since you don't have to discard your hand. Since it is a GX, it will also be a little bit easier to get out thanks to Cherish Ball (UB; 191) . Additionally, once you get it out it is going to stick around a bit longer than Zebstrika (LT; 82) usually does. Power Plant and Great Catcher both have a say in the Zebstrika (LT; 82) vs Silvally debate, but Silvally is certainly worth a try.
This card will probably only be played in Pidgey, but that happens to be one of the best decks, so this card will have its fifteen minutes of fame right off the bat. As pidgey, you can leave yourself with no deck so only your opponent's deck is getting milled. The second effect is not one you will use often, but it is a great tool in the Malamar matchup. They have many useful Pokemon in the matchup, and they can't really get them back once they are discarded. Also, another card that pretty much only benefits Pidgey is Misty & Lorelei, which will let you GX with your Articuno multiple times. I expect Pidgey to be GXing early to handle a major threat, and then doing it at least one more time at the end of the game to lock things up.This will leave the opponent with a lot to play around, and give the Pidgey player even more tools at their disposal.
This will be played in Standard, but I don't think it has a place in expanded due to Field Blower. It will only be played by control decks and decks that don't otherwise use a stadium, which is pretty specific, but it has a strong effect for decks that don't mind using the stadium. It is essentially just a counter stadium that also counters the next stadium, unless Marshadow (UBO; 81) were to interfere, but decks can't just play a bunch of those to use if they happen to run into multiple Chaotic Swells.
This is a game ender in the same sense that Hapu can be a game ender, but it does a way better job of doing so. It does take a specific build to be able to use this card, you wouldn't want to go slapping this thing in any deck right now. However, Pikarom will probably love the introduction of this card. Being able to find stacks of Electropowers, a pair of Custom Catchers, or a stamp seems incredible in the late game. You can also use it in the early game to find cards like Electromagnetic Radar (UBO; 230) and Energy Spinner (UBO; 170) . A Clay engine could end up being the key to getting turn one Full Blitz consistently, so that is something I plan to try at some point.
I said earlier in the article that Lopunny might be the most impactful card in the set, but Great Catcher probably takes that cake. It isn't a blow out by any means, but Great Catcher will be heavily played just like Lopunny will. I don't expect this card to outright replace Custom Catcher (LT; 171) , I think they will end up being played alongside each other in at least some decks, but this card is very solid nontheless.
This card is incredible in the expanded format, being able to search out Tropical Beach 11 (BW; 28) and a couple other cards while you're at it is no joke. I don't think it has a ton of uses, but Primal Groudon and Shocklock will appreciate this card coming out. Shintaro won a Japanese tournament with a Regirock (BW; 49) deck that featured Counter Energy (CIN; 100) , Tropical Beach 11 (BW; 28) , and this insane supporter card.
This card is a great one to end the article with, as it is a good one. It lets you search for two Tag Team cards, which means you will have your selection of many powerful Tag Team Pokemon and Supporter cards. Not all decks will play this card, but I suspect most will, pretty much any deck that plays Tag Team cards will include this Tag Whistle card. This will increase the consistency in the game a lot, and maybe decrease the amount of Welder we are seeing nowadays.
That wrap things up for my Cosmic Eclipse review! I hope getting to hear my thoughts on some of the new cards got you hyped for the release of this massive set, and maybe even put a deck idea or two in your head. I have two expanded Regional Championships to compete in before the new set is legal, but then the testing grind for the Latin American International Championships will be very real. In fact, thinking about it now, I should probably get started on that before Portland so I don't leave myself with just a couple days to figure a deck out. That is all I have for today, but I hope to be back next week with some expanded talk! Until then, peace.
Tropical Beach 11 (BW; 28)
Regirock (BW; 49)
Lycanroc GX (GRI; 138)
Guzma (BUS; 115)
Counter Energy (CIN; 100)
Malamar (FLI; 51)
Custom Catcher (LT; 171)
Zebstrika (LT; 82)
Pikachu & Zekrom GX (TM; 33)
Mew (UBO; 76)
Marshadow (UBO; 81)
Lt. Surge's Strategy (UBO; 178)
Energy Spinner (UBO; 170)
Electromagnetic Radar (UBO; 230)
Reset Stamp (UB; 206)
Mewtwo & Mew GX (UB; 71)
Cherish Ball (UB; 191)
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