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Pojo's Pokemon Card of the Day


Emboar #19/114

Black & White

Date Reviewed: April 19, 2011

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 2.63
Limited: 2.63

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

Emboar 19/114

As I said in yesterday’s review, there are two Emboar in the set. There is the good one that does Raindance for Fire Energy, and then there is this . . .

Once again the HP is the best thing the card has to offer. 150 HP is pretty big, even by current standards for a Stage 2. You can’t really complain about the Water Weakness, but you can about the four Energy Retreat cost. Once you get above three though, it doesn’t really matter: it will never be worth paying so make sure you run some switching cards.

Emboar’s first attack is Heat Crash . . . and it is identical to the one on the Stage 1 we looked at yesterday (that is just a little lazy from the card designers, I think). [R][R][C] for 50 points of vanilla damage: costs too much and doesn’t do enough. Rubbish. At least its other attack, Flare Blitz hits a nearly-always-unnecessary 150 damage. For that size of a hit, it’s no surprise that the cost is [R][R][C][C]. Unfortunately, you also have to discard ALL your Fire Energy from Emboar when you use it. This means that, to avoid losing every single Energy, you have to find some other way of paying the Colourless cost than Fire. Of course, you would probably want to run Double Colourless anyway, but this extra inconvenience just makes the card that little bit worse than it could have been.

Though to be honest, it doesn’t make a whole lot of difference when it comes to playability: in Modified, it’s nowhere near good enough.


Modified: 1.5 (two very expensive attacks means this card isn’t really viable)

Limited: 2 (if you pulled the line, you would play it for the huge HP)


Hello once again, Pojo viewers! Today's Card of the Day is yet another new card from the upcoming Black and White expansion, but you can get your hands on this one already if you buy one of the new Red Frenzy theme decks that came out about two weeks ago. Today's card is the evolution of yesterday's, and also may be somewhat playable in Modified once the rest of the set is released. Today's Card of the Day is Emboar (#19) from Black and White.

Emboar is a Stage 2 Fire Pokemon. Fire Pokemon are somewhat popular nowadays, with Charizard seeing a bit of play (although not quite a Tier 1 deck), as well as Blaziken FB being teched into various SP builds. Emboar will probably be able to find its way into its own deck at some point, but that will be largely due to the other Emboar in the set, #20, which has an Ability that allows it to drop as many Fire Energy as you like per turn from your hand, similar to a Fire-type Rain Dance. Anyway, this Emboar has 150 HP, which is great for a Stage 2. Most attacks probably won't OHKO you, and maybe even 2HKO. Water Weakness hurts, so be sure to look out for Gyarados and Kingdra LA. No Resistance is once again unfortunate. Finally, a Retreat Cost of 4 is gigantic, so be sure to use Switch/Warp Point/Warp Energy to send Emboar to the Bench - you won't ever want to pay the cost.

This particular Emboar has two attacks: Heat Crash and Flare Blitz. Heat Crash, like Pignite yesterday, does a vanilla 50 damage for RCC. However, unlike Pignite, this one can make great use of Double Colorless Energy. However, since 50 damage for three Energy is rather lackluster anyway, you'll rarely want to be using this attack.

Flare Blitz, however, is where the action is on this card. For the massive cost of two Fire and two Colorless, Flare Blitz deals a huge 150 damage, discarding all Fire Energy attached to Emboar. Here's definitely where Double Colorless comes in: With a Double Colorless attached, Emboar is effectively dealing 150 damage without only discarding two Energy, and using the other Emboar's Ability or Typhlosion Prime's Afterburner, this is very easy to power up consistently. From this, it is important to realize that most decks can't handle taking 150 damage per turn (this even OHKOs a belted Gyarados), so you will be Knocking Out nearly everything in the metagame in one hit (with the exception of the uncommonly played Wailord, and a few other uncommon things with over 150 HP, like Tyranitar Prime, Salamence Lv. X, and a few LEGENDs). The downside, of course, is that Emboar is rather slow to power up, so if you can't get the required Energy, you'll be in trouble.

Modified: 3/5 Emboar is a curious case. It has a lot of HP and can deal massive amounts of damage, but is very slow and has a relatively common Weakness. I think that this card has a lot of potential, and could easily find its way into a deck as an alternative to Charizard AR. In fact, I can see this getting played in a similar role after the rotation, where SP decks will be somewhat more crippled, and Gyarados will be gone. As for right now, Charizard has a few more things going for it (Cheaper attacks, fewer discard requirements, Fighting Resistance), but Emboar has its positives as well (Lower stages have more HP, the line deals more damage, not reliant on a Poke-Body/bench space to do damage). If you like hitting things really, really hard, Emboar might work in a deck for you.

Limited: 3/5 Emboar is decent in Limited, but not immediately as good as one might think. There is no Double Colorless Energy in Limited, making Flare Blitz very difficult to power up, and discarding all of your Fire Energy here is much more painful than it is in Modified. However, Heat Crash is still a useful, albeit underpowered, attack for Limited. However, it still is a 150 HP behemoth and has mostly Colorless Energy requirements for its attacks, so if you draft one, you should probably use it. If you get an Emboar (#20) to go with it, even better.

Combos With: Emboar BW (#20), Typhlosion Prime (HGSS), Double Colorless Energy (HGSS)

Mad Mattezhion
 Professor Bathurst League Australia

Emboar (Black and White)
I sense a pattern forming here. This is the second time we have reviewed a Stage 1 followed by the matching Stage 2. What does the rest of the week hold?
Emboar is a Fire Type Stage 2 with 150 HP, Water weakness, a retreat cost of 4 and two attacks.
That HP is absolutely wonderful, and has to be the highest base HP I've seen on a Poke'mon that isn't a Wailord or a special card of some kind (Legend, Prime, Lv x or Ex, take your pick). Emboar should be able to take a severe hit and come back swinging, although the Water weakness is worrying. The retreat cost is fair but terrible, so watch our for Poison/cheap attacks that will whittle away your health and pack several switch cards.
I'd just like to take a second and say that the artwork is pleasing to the eye but Emboar itself is ugly. Not that being ugly is a negative point, we need some ugly Poke'mon before I lose all respect due to the overwhelmig number of adorable Poke'mon that have been released. It's also interesting to note that the set numbering system has been changed for the first time since the creation of the game. All of the Poke'mon have been released in sequential order according to how they evolve, rather than based on the rarity of the card so Tepig is followed by Pignite and then Emboar is next on the list. The old system was fine, I wonder why they changed it?
The attacks are both vanilla damage, which is the case for most Fire Poke'mon. Heat Crash costs [r][c][c] and deals 50 damage, which has about the same usefulness as Pignite's attack (which has the same name). You can use it while building up, but it lacks the punch you need and expect from a Stage 2 (although it has the bonus of being able to use Double Colourless Energy which Pignite cannot do).
Flare Blitz is the real draw of this card, and at 150 damage it delivers a huge bang for your energy. 150 seems to be a magic number at the moment, as most Stage T Poke'mon in use have 130 HP or less so you can OHKO them even if they have Expert Belt attached. And since Emboar gets that level of damage without Expert Belt, you can bring it up to 170 damage very easily. A single Cherrim SF thrown into the mix gives you 180 damage which is enough to take out any other Poke'mon in the game, regardless of whether or not your opponent uses Expert Belt.
I know some of you are thinking that Wailord UD could survie with the help of an Expert Belt and go for a revenge KO, but do you seriously think someone is going to build a Rain Dance deck with a Wailord in it on the off chance they meet an Emboar? Most competitors consider Rain Dance decks to be too slow and Power Lock is still common with Power Spray and Mesprit LA in the format to shut you down (Rain Dance lives and dies on its ability to use its Poke-powers effectively).
Before I get to excited though, the drawback is the cost of [r][r][c][c] and the added cost of discarding all [r] energy attached to Emboar (meaning that at a minimum you are discarding 2 energy every time you attack).While the NinePhlosion deck engine that loves this kind of discard-for-damage attack (Ninetales dsicards energy and draws cards while Typhlosion gets the lost energy onto your attacker) and is looking for a possible replacement attacker when Charizard AR and Blaziken PT/Blaziken FB get rotated out, that discard cost is still very high (balanced and fair, but still very painful).
The saving grace is that Emboar can use Double Colourless Energy to help pay for both of its attacks, and since DCE won't get discarded by Flare Blitz you can keep the discard cost down to 2 energy per attack. With a Typhlosion Prime or 2 as backup you can use Flare Blitz turn after turn to really clean up, and best of all you won't have to use Expert Belt so if Emboar gets knocked out, you'll still be ahead on Prizes (you may still want to use Expert Belt, but unlike with Charizard and the Blazikens, it won't be an absolute necessity).
Bearing in mind that Flare Blitz is playable and you can skimp on the Expert Belt due to both the exceptional damage and the vey high HP, I'm going to say that Emboar does justice to Pignite from yesterday and to the new game as a whole. All of that comes without even needing one of the new Abilities, so you don't have to worry about Ability-lock in the future (Charizard suffers horribly against Umbreon UD and Dialga G Lv X due to it's reliance on Poke-bodies, and the Blazikens don't fare much better due to their lower HP). Also, if you need to you can tech in non-Fire Poke'mon, like Cherrim SF mentioned earlier, which the other builds cannot do (Charizard's Poke-body limits you to Fire Poke'mon and the Blazikens don't leave you enough room on your bench for other techs).
To finish, the continuing reversal of power creep may mean we pay more energy for our attacks and to retreat, but it definitely DOES NOT mean that we will lose that wonderful feeling that comes from smashing a Poke'mon with an unnecessarily powerful attack. Emboar and Pignite have earned my respect.
Modified: 4.5 (Extremely high HP, high damage and a ready made deck just waiting for a new frontman. I'd say Emboar is a success and since I run NinePhlosion I'm going to trial it as soon as I get a set. A slight speed loss is a small price for that tank-like durability and power!)
Limited: 3.5 (Flare Blitz is extremely costly here and Emboar is harder to get out, but the previous stages make up for that somewhat by being powerful for use on their own [see Pignite])
Combos with: Typhlosion Prime, Ninetales HGSS, Cherrim SF

conical 4/19/11: Emboar(Black & White)
Remember yesterday's card, when I talked about Emboar's energy acceleration powers? Well, that doesn't refer to this card. Sorry about that.
It looks like high HP is going to be common within the Emboar family. I mentioned Pignite's 100 HP multiple times yesterday, and Emboar shares the same characteristic, possessing a massive 150 HP.
Unfortunately, this Emboar has nothing but attacks, and neither of them are even mediocre. Heat Crash is particularly bad; It's been a few years since 50 damage for 3 energy was even average. Then there's Flare Blitz, which does 150 damage for 4 energy. If they had to add in a downside to the attack, I don't understand why they wouldn't make Emboar damage itself, since that's what Flare Blitz does in the actual games, but that's not what it does. Instead, you discard all the fire energy on Emboar. And that's no good. Thankfully, since there's another, better Emboar in the set, this card should get glossed over, rather than outright ridiculed. Like that Gengar from Arceus that no one remembers.
Modified: 1.5/5
Limited: 2/5  

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