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Yu Yu Hakusho
Harry Potter
Vs. System

Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day


Kingdra Prime

HS Unleashed

Date Reviewed: July 26, 2011

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.75
Limited: 4.50

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

Combos With:

Baby Mario
2010 UK National

Kingdra Prime (Unleashed)

Kingdra Prime always looked as if it should be a great card. Basically, this was because it looked incredibly similar to the amazing Kingdra LA: both could do 60 damage for a single Water Energy, and both could hit the Bench.

This card’s misfortune was to be released into a format where Luxray GL LV X was everywhere. Thanks to the x2 Weakness (something that the LA Kingdra didn’t suffer from), Kingdra Prime was a Stage 2 that could be dragged from the bench and one-shot by a super-fast SP LV X. The considerable resources that you invested into setting up this Stage 2 would then all be wasted.

Now that Luxray is just a memory, it could be Kingdra Prime’s time to shine. Yes, it still has natural enemies in the shape of Magnezone Prime and Zekrom, but they are not the threat that the infamous SP Pokémon was. Now Kingdra can sit on the Bench and use its fantastic Spray Splash Power (effectively a Crobat G drop every turn) to get crucial KOs on active Pokémon, help Yanmega snipe 50 HP Basics (Magnemites and Tepigs are popular choices), or work with other spread/snipe Pokémon (such as Gengar Prime, Simisear, and Yanmega Prime), to pave the way for Jirachi to come along, devolve everything, and take multiple Prizes.

As an attacker in its own right, Kingdra has a lot going for it too. 60 damage for a single Energy is fast and excellent for the cost. Water typing means that it can be a very effective Donphan Prime counter. The downside to the attack (damage is reduced to 20 if your opponent has a Fire Pokémon on the Field) is a real shame though: it makes Kingdra virtually useless against Reshiram decks, or even decks that tech that particular Dragon. That is probably the one thing that is holding Kingdra Prime back from being one of the best cards in the format right now.

Even so, as a support Pokémon and a back up attacker against decks without Fire Pokémon, Kindgra Prime is an excellent card, with possibly the most attractive artwork of all the Primes. Just remember . . . a Crobat G drop every turn.


Modified: 3.5 (brilliant Power, backed by a nice attack that is sadly all-too-easily countered)

Combos with . . .

Jirachi UL, Yanmega Prime, any spread or snipe Pokemon


Greetings, Pojo viewers! Today we are continuing our COTD Week by reviewing yet another Pokemon Prime card that had a very good showing at the various North American National Championships, with this one specifically being a Stage 2 combo piece in a few decks. Today's Card of the Day is Kingdra Prime from HS Unleashed.

Kingdra is a Stage 2 Water-type Pokemon. Water types are fairly uncommon in Modified right now, with only Kingdra seeing common play. However, there are some Rain Dance variants running around, Blastoise/Floatzel turns up every now and again, and with the release of Beartic in Emerging Powers, chances are that will be a popular deck as well. 130 HP is average for a Stage 2, meaning that Kingdra should be able to take a hit or two provided it isn't being hit for Weakness. Lightning Weakness is rather unfortunate in the current Modified metagame, in that both Magnezone and Zekrom will basically obliterate Kingdra. No Resistance is unfortunate but expected, and a Retreat Cost of 1 is decent and easily payable.

Kingdra has a Poke-POWER and a single attack, both of which are very useful. Spray Splash, the Power, allows you to choose one of your opponent's Pokemon each turn and put a damage counter on it. This has excellent synergy with snipers such as Mandibuzz and Yanmega, as well as picking off any Pokemon that simply has 10 HP remaining. Even better is that if you somehow get multiple Kingdra in play, these effects stack, meaning you can do multiple Spray Splashes per turn, making it quite easy to spread damage around.

Steam Dragon does an amazing 60 damage for a single Water Energy, although this damage is reduced by 20 if your opponent has any Fire Pokemon in play. This attack is great against Donphan Prime, taking a significant chunk of its HP out if they don't have any Fire-types in play, although it sadly won't OHKO due to Donphan's Exoskeleton. Additionally, this attack does quite well against the many lower-HP evolving Basics in the format, easily taking them out after a Spray Splash. Note that this attack is actually quite mediocre against Fire-types, so if you run into any of them, you're going to want to have another Pokemon (possibly another Water-type) to deal with them effectively.

Modified: 3/5 Kingdra's an interesting Pokemon. It has excellent combo potential with Mandibuzz, Yanmega, and other snipers, but it also has a horrific Weakness and does terribly against Fire, one of the most common types in the format. This basically relegates Kingdra to a powerful Bench-sitter with its excellent Spray Splash, but Steam Dragon is still a serviceable attack in its own right. Therefore, in the right deck, Kingdra can really shine, but it can't really do all of that much on its own. Kingdra was in a deck that did pretty well at Nats with Yanmega Prime and Jirachi UL/CL to take full potential of its sniping abilities, for example.

Limited: 4.5/5 Kingdra is amazing in Limited. Spray Splash will undoubtedly give your opponent fits, and Steam Dragon is amazing for the cost, even if your opponent has any Fire-types in play. If you draft the entire line and can get it out, you'll find yourself in a great position.

Combos With: Yanmega Prime, Mandibuzz BW

Mad Mattezhion
 Professor Bathurst League Australia

Kingdra Prime (HS Unleashed)

Greetings and salutations, today we have a Prime that was useful before the rotation and has become a lot more interesting since most of the competition has been removed,

Kingdra is a Water type Stage 2 with 130 HP, Lightning weakness, a retreat cost of 1, a Poke-power and an attack.

The HP is respectable but with the recent increase in average health means that Kingdra is sitting pretty low on the food chain at the moment. On the plus side the retreat cost is tiny for a Stage 2, so as far as speed is concerned Kingdra is right at the forefront, needing only a single energy for optimum effectiveness. The weakness is bad as both Magnezone Prime and Zekorm will eat this seahorse for breakfast, so you definitely need to find dance partners that can handle a matchup against anything yellow.

Although Kingdra is built to be a 'fast' Stage 2 (similar to Poke'mon like Gengar, Crobat and Jumpluff) in a format that has had the brakes applied, we still have to see if the abilities can be made to work with the current card pool. The first and most flexible is the Poke-powe, Spray Splash. The effect is that once per turn you can place a damage counter on one of your opponent's Poke'mon, which can be anything from mildly helpful to game changing. There are many times where an extra damage counter would have been mighty helpful in taking a KO, and several of those situations put me behind in prizes or gave my opponent an extra turn which cost me the game.

Since you are placing a damage counter with a Poke-power rather than adding damage to an attack, there are several ways that Spray Splash can be abused which are not possible with Black Belt and Pluspower. For starters, you can use Spray Splash to harrass your opponent's Active when you can't attack due to lack of energy or a Special Condition. If you can play Kindra early enough, it can begin harrassing the opponent while you are still using your starter Poke'mon's setup attack, which is especially effective if your opponent is using a Baby Poke'mon like Cleffa or Tyrogue (the low HP is music to Kingdra's ears, and Sweet Sleeping Face won't stop damage counters).

However, considering the resources required to play a Stage 2, it is more likely you will get Kingdra into play during the midgame after you have set up your first attacker. At this point, Spray Splash is great for softening up targets both benched and Active which your heavy hitter will then remove from play. This is especially effective when combined with snipers like Yanmega Prime, Blastoise UL, Metagross UL and Mandibuzz BW (especially Mandibuzz as you can place that first counter necessary to attack with Blindside), because snipe/spread attackers can't apply the bonus damage from cards like Pluspower, which only work against an opponent's Active Poke'mon.

Aside from attack-free harrassment and sniper support (which unitl the release of Crobat G was practically nonexistent), Kingdra also works wonder as an attack booster aginst tank Poke'mon like Zekrom BW, Steelix Prime, Armourott and Donphan Prime. Because placing damage counters completely ignores damage reducing effects like Defender, Metal Energy, Shell Armour and Exoskeleton, you can chip away at an opponent's health quite effectively, usually brining a 3HKO down to a 2HKO. Since most tanks have relatively weak attack power and find it difficult to OHKO other attackers, reducing the necessary number fo turns to take a KO will definitely help you and will probably win you the game.

I've raved about the positive aspects of Spray Splash (my second-favourite Poke-power after Fainting Spell) but there are some downsides. You do have to consider the deck space you are dedicating to Kingdra, as well as the resources you have to use to successfully put it into play. Also, you don't get any bonus for hitting weakness (although you do get around resistance and other effects as well) which is one of the best aspects of using Pluspower (aside from the ease of play).

Still, I am defnitely in favour of Spray Splash as it is effectively an attack from the bench that is currently unblockable (unless you apply a Special Condition or just take Kingdra out of play) and if you really want to bring the hurt you can even play multiple Kingdra Primes to stack the Poke-power. Just beware of healing (such as Serperior BW) and don't focus on Kingdra to the exclusion of your main attacker or you won't be able to match your opponent in the race for prizes.

I almost forgot about the attack, which is the aptly named Dragon Steam. For the low cost of [w] you deal 60 damage which is absolutely awesome, but the rather inventive drawback is that if your opponent has a Fire Poke'mon in play then you only deal 20 base damage. Effectively this gives Kingdra a second weakness to Fire Poke'mon which will almost always comprehensively outgun Kingdra even after applying weakness. Although you can't go ballistic against popular Fire support like Ninetales HGSS, Typhlosion Prime and FanBoar, you can bring the hurt against other non-Fire Water weak Poke'mon you meet. Donphan Prime and Krookodile BW spring to mind although you will still need an extra Spray Splash to bring them down due to the high HP.

An interesting point is that Kingdra Prime has to be the only Water Poke'mon in the current card pool which does not benefit from being paired with Feraligatr Prime, due to the cheap attack and retreat cost.

In the end, if you are fond of Rare Candy and can tech in a [w] energy then Kingdra will serve you well as both an attack booster and backup attacker which can alternate between being a bench sitter and a finisher easily due to the cheap retreat cost. While I can't pick a popular archetype where Kingdra would fit from the top of my head I expect to see it trialed in new decks as they emerge simply because it is so adaptable. I've heard whispers about a revival of multitype decks using various cheap attackers (commonly reffered to as 'Four Corners') that might like using Kingdra but only time will tell.

Modified: 4.25 (I loved Kingdra before the rotation and I love it now but I can't help feeling that it is a luxury card with no definite home for the moment)

Limited: 3.5 (HS Unleashed was one of the best supported sets for Stage 2 Poke'mon in Limited, but the weakness to 2 different types is a bit of a problem. The lower stages don't help the case either)

Combos with: any deck that runs snipers/spread or really fears Donphan

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