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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day


Primeape #22/95

HS Unleashed

Date Reviewed: June 21, 2010

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 1.50
Limited: 2.40

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

Combos With: See Below

Baby Mario
2010 UK National

Primeape (Unleashed)


Hello and welcome to another week of Pojo’s CotD. This week we will be rounding off the Rares from Unleashed and starting to look at some of the Uncommons.


We kick off with Primeape, yet another of the many, many Stage 1s in the set. He has average Stage 1 stats too . . .  90 HP, Retreat cost of one . . . nothing special there. He also has a double Psychic Weakness.


No Powers or Bodies, so let’s take a look at the attacks. The first, Low Kick, does 30 damage for [C][C] . . . which is completely underwhelming. That amount of effect-free damage will get you nowhere fast in this game, and is most certainly NOT worth a DCE . . . especially as Primape requires specific Energy for his second attack.


At least Bebop Punch is more interesting. For [F][F] you get to choose one of your opponent’s Pokémon, flip a coin until you get tails, and do 50 damage for each heads. Yep, you could get lucky and flip three heads in a row to KO a benched Stage 2 (which would make Primape the best sniper in the game!), or you could just fail completely (and 50% of the time you will, which would make Primape utterly useless). What kills the card is the fact that you flip UNTIL you get tails. If it was flip two or three times and do 50 times the number of heads, then it might be a little more playable.


I still wouldn’t recommend it though. Partly because it is flippy, and partly because the Energy cost of Bebop Punch makes it slower than a Stage 1 ought to be, while the 90 HP and Psychic Weakness means that it is very vulnerable to a quick KO itself. You may well come up against this card at League, and some kid will get outrageously lucky and do 750 damage to your Claydol or something, but don’t let that influence you into considering it for a deck.


It’s not a good card.




Modified: 1.5 (gets half a mark for not being totally boring)

Limited: 2.25 (might be worth the risk here)


Combos with . . .


A double-headed coin. Don’t do it – it’s cheating.

virusyosh Welcome back, Pojo readers! This week we are continuing reviews of cards from the HS Unleashed expansion. Today's Card of the Day is Primeape.

Primeape is a Stage 1 Fighting Pokemon. Aside from Machamp and Donphan, Fighting types are relatively rare in today's metagame, despite the prevalence of a few Pokemon with Fighting type weakness, notably Luxray GL Lv. X. 90 HP is about standard for a Stage 1, even though it's probably not enough to stay around for too long. Double Weakness to Psychic isn't great, but could be much worse; no Resistance is to be expected; and a Retreat Cost of 1 is decent and perfectly payable.

Primeape, like many other cards from the HS era, has two attacks. The first, Low Kick, deals a vanilla 30 damage for [CC]. A positive about this attack is that it can be powered up immediately with a Double Colorless Energy, although you are probably better off using the DCE on something with a more useful attack. The second attack, Bebop Punch, costs [FF] and allows you to choose one of your opponent's Pokemon, flip a coin until you get tails, and then deal 50 damage for each heads. General flippiness aside, this attack is fairly unique in that it is a snipe attack, and has the capability of doing a ton of damage. However, the flips are really the downfall of this attack: most of the time you will probably end up with only 50 damage or quite possibly no damage at all. 50 damage for two Energy is only slightly better than average anyway when the damage is guaranteed, so it may be best to stay clear of this in competitive play.

Modified: 1/5 Low HP and weak/unreliable attacks make Primeape pretty much unusable here. Bebop Punch is unique, however its reliance on coin flips make it a low pick.

Limited: 2/5 The extra point is only here because of the possibility of doing good snipe damage with Bebop Punch here. Still not one of the better picks, though.


We start the day with a very potent card, the new Primeape from HS – Unleashed.  Its pig-like snout combined with the name of its second attack – Bebop Punch – should send older players like me who grew up on the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle cartoon into nostalgic fits of joy or pain.


What about people who never saw or just don’t care about that old cartoon?  Well, now the card doesn’t fair as well: 90 HP is about what you expect on a Stage 1 Pokémon of the current generation, but it isn’t really enough to warrant playing unless it is hiding on the bench or in some other way protected.  Given that Fighting Pokémon are a bit beefy, I’d think a slightly higher HP (even if it was just 100) would be warranted unless the rest of the card was amazing.  The double Weakness to Psychic Pokémon isn’t the worst it could have (though Lightning Weakness wouldn’t make any sense) it’s going to hurt it in several match-ups.  This card has no Resistance, so I’ll use this place to point out that while Fighting Weakness is common; Fighting Resistance is (comparatively) common.  The single Energy Retreat Cost is manageable, but overkill, even more so when you factor in the rest of the card.  Yes, I am repeating myself a bit there.


Moving on, Low Kick is a passable attack: (CC) for 30.  In Limited play this is useful because it allows you to run Primeape (with Mankey) in any deck you like as a counter to Fighting Weak Pokémon.  In constructed formats, right now that allows Double Colorless Energy to speed it up (alongside Evolution “cheats” like Rare Candy) to attack in a single turn.  Too bad in constructed formats it won’t be enough damage to matter, and is about as low a return as you should expect in the modern game (it’d have been good in the earliest sets and “fair” a few years ago).  Any worse and it should have been balancing out some awesome Poké-Power/Poké-Body, extra attack(s), better stats, or some combination of all the above.  This is especially true when we compare it to played Stage 1 Fighting Pokémon like Donphan Prime.  Even looking at potential mitigating circumstances, one has to accept that a new standard was set for Stage 1 Fighting Pokémon by that card, so an inexpensive opening attack like this should have required just a single Fighting Energy and either hit a little harder or with a bonus effect.


Bebop Punch is the second attack, and it’s so close to being good.  If this was a stronger Pokémon it might be a decent warm-up attack.  For two Fighting Energy you get to select an opponent’s Pokémon and flip a coin until you get tails.  For each heads result, you inflict 50 points of damage to that Pokémon.  If there was guaranteed base damage or it was less expensive, it could really be a threat: perhaps base damage of 30 with 30 per heads, and only requiring (CC).


Unless I missed where there is finally a card that let’s you dictate coin flip results for attacks like these, this is going to be a decent pick for Limited but something you’ll pass on for Modified.




Modified: 2/5 

Limited: 3/5

Baby Mario
2010 UK National
Primeape (HS Unleashed)
Sorry about my review mix-up last week when I reviewed the wrong Prime, I clicked the wrong links. I'll get back with a proper review to make up for that, bear with me. I'm getting my eyes checked next week!
I've always had a soft spot for the first card of this week, Primeape! Unfortunately, this version is nowhere near as cool as the one from Supreme Victors. Nowhere near as good looking either, but then I've never been much of a fan of Adachi's work on the cards. Sorry, but the Duskull from Stormfront was really pretty if you are reading this Adachi. Moving on...
Primeape comes out with 90 HP, Psychic weakness and 1 retreat cost. The HP is too low for good survivability but standard for non-evolving Stage 1's who are lighter than a ton (Gyarados and Donphan, I'm looking at you!) and the weakness sucks due to the current popularity of Psychic decks but there isn't much you can do about that. The retreat cost is negligible, but free retreat would have been nice and would fit Primeape's hyperactive image. Bad stats, but not worse than expected.
Now the attacks. Primeape has Low kick and the strangely named Bebop Punch (are they aiming for a tie-in somewhere?), neither of which will impress. Low kick deals 30 damage for CC, which is weak. Bebop Punch is more interesting, being a flip-until-tails attack that deals 50 damage per heads to one of your opponent's Pokemon ("oh Claydol, where are you?"). Sadly, the massive potential of this cheap attack (only costing  FF) is ruined by the fact that half the time you will get nothing, so noone with tournamnet level games in their sights will ever consider this card. If the cost was only F you might see some takers, but even then you have to evolve and the flips could still stall you and cost you the game. Believe me, I never got a single heads using this guy at the prerelease. The unlimited-damage-against-any-Pokemon is tempting, but not in any way playable.
Maybe Primeape HSU could fit in with a rogue Primeape/Slowking deck if you need an extra mad monkey, but the overwhelming likelihood is that this guy will only ever fit in the binder.
Modified: 1.5 (Flippy and easily KOed, not a good combo)
Limited: 2 (Slightly more survivability, but not many Fighting Pokemon to go with it and still very flippy)
Combos with: Primeape SV

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