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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day


Top 10 Cards of 2009:


Spiritomb Lv. 39


Date Reviewed: 01.06.10

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 4.13
Limited: 3.50

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale.
1 being the worst.  3 ... average.  5 is the highest rating.

Back to the main COTD Page

Baby Mario
Top 4 UK Nats

Spiritomb  (Arceus)


At #8 in our annual Top 10 countdown, we have Spiritomb from the Arceus set. A card that is responsible for re-introducing something that the game hasn’t seen in a while . . . the tournament-viable starter Pokémon.


Despite there being a number of potentially good starters in the format (Pachirisu GE, Sableye SF, even the old favourite Absol SW), they rarely see play outside of a few specialised decks (for example, Sableye SF in Gyarados). There are two main reasons for this: firstly the format is so fast that there really isn’t time to sit there setting up behind a starter; and secondly Call Energy has the ability to turn any Pokémon into a good opening play without having to dedicate deckspace to a Pokémon that doesn’t have much use after the first couple of turns.


Spiritomb effectively changed all of that. How? Because it addresses those very problems just mentioned.


For a start, Spiritomb’s Keystone Seal PokeBody slows the game down. Once neither player can use Trainers, game speed is reduced: SP players can’t use their SP Radars and PokeTurns, and Stage 2 decks are denied their Rare Candies. Next, Spiritomb actually works brilliantly in conjunction with Call Energy. A first turn Call can then be followed by multiple use of Spiritomb’s costless Darkness Grace attack which allows you to search your deck for an Evolution and play it. In other words, Spiritomb helps you to set up, while greatly hindering your opponent’s ability to do the same.


As cards like Dialga G, Mr Mime MT, and Gardevoir SW have shown us, any form of lock is a very powerful weapon in the Pokémon TCG and can easily be abused. Spiritomb already forms part of a very effective new deck with Gliscor LV X and fits nicely into almost any Stage 2 deck that isn’t based on outright speed. It’s a new card, so its potential hasn’t been fully explored yet and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it feature a lot higher on any Top 10 list in the future.




Modified: 4.25 (hands down the best starter Pokémon in the format)

Limited: 4 (not many Trainers to lock in limited, but getting out the evolutions is handy)


Keystone Seal:

As long as Spiritomb is your active Pokémon, neither player can play Trainer cards from his or her hand.  Both players are still able to play other cards from their hands.  If you are capable of playing around this, this setback should be no problem.



Darkness Grace:  For 0 energy, search your deck for a Pokémon that evolves from 1 of your Pokémon already in play, and put it on that Pokémon.  If you do, Spiritomb takes on a damage counter.  Despite Spiritiomb damaging itself from the effect of the attack, it helps evolve a Pokémon you have in play and intend to use later on.


Will-o'-the-wisp:  For 1 energy, the Will-o'-the-wisp attack deals a very low 10 damage against the defending Pokémon.



Spiritomb has no weakness, -20 resistance against {C} Pokémon, and a retreat cost of 1 energy.  Its 60 HP is moderate for a basic Pokémon.



Spiritomb is currently among the best setup Pokémon in the game for decks reliant on speedy evolutions.



Modified:  4/5

Limited:  3/5

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