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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day


Reshiram EX

Next Destinies

Date Reviewed: Feb. 14, 2012

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.25
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: See Below

Baby Mario
2010 UK National

#9 Reshiram-EX

Apparently you can never have too many Reshirams. The version we got in Black and White has been reprinted so many times now: in full art and normal versions, as a tin promo, as a box promo, and finally once again in Next Destinies itself. Surely it’s about time this Pokémon was given a new card instead of just new artwork? (Ok, I know there are jumbo Reshiram cards in Japan with 1000 HP and 1000 damage attacks, but they aren’t legal for play and therefore don’t count).

Step forward the #9 card on our top 10 countdown: Reshiram-EX. Unlike yesterday’s card, this one doesn’t disappoint when it comes to HP: 180 HP on a Basic Pokémon is huge . . . ridiculous even. It outstrips everything we’ve seen before of any Stage with the exception of a few (mostly unplayable) Wailord cards. Reshiram has the Water Weakness you would expect, but that’s not too bad as not many Water Pokémon see play . . . Kyurem NV is a spread attacker that won’t usually threaten a OHKO, and you sometimes see Vanilluxe around, but that’s pretty much it. The Retreat cost of three is an inconvenience as Retreating damaged EXs for Prize denial will often be a good play. I recommend Switch.

Reshiram’s first attack, Glinting Claw, has a cost of [R][C][C]. The good news is that Double Colourless Energy will help it get there. The base damage of 50 is not particularly impressive, but you do get a coin flip for an extra 30 (seems like Victory Star Victini would come in handy here). 80 for three would be ok, but doesn’t really justify the EX status: it’s more something to use if you either don’t need more than 50 damage to get a KO, or you don’t have the Energy for the second attack.

Brave Fire costs a pretty huge [R][R][C][C], but that’s not really a problem: it’s Double Colourless compatible and Fire decks are not short of Energy acceleration with both Ability Emboar BW and Typhlosion Prime capable of fulfilling that role. For this investment you get to do a massive 150 damage: enough to OHKO anything short of another EX Pokémon, including the BW Dragons, even with Eviolite attached. The downside to this extremely powerful attack? You flip a coin, and if you get tails, there’s 50 points of self-damage heading your way.

Now obviously, that’s quite a big downside, putting Reshiram-EX within KO range for a non-EX Dragon with a PlusPower. Eviolite can help somewhat by reducing the damage taken to 30, and again you could use Fliptini to cut the chance of self-damage down to 25%, but that’s still a risk that could cost two Prizes if it doesn’t come off. For this reason, I see Reshiram-EX fulfilling a tech role in ReshiBoar and Reshiphlosion lists. The main attacker is still going to be Reshiram BW, but one or two EX will be played for those situations where the 150 damage is really needed to deal with an opposing EX, or a Magnezone, or maybe tanking attackers in Trainer Lock decks like The Truth.

Reshiram-EX is obviously very powerful, but to be honest I don’t see it as being such a massive upgrade on the BW Reshiram (which actually says more about how good that card is). He’s an obvious inclusion in existing decks as a heavy-hitter, rather than a replacement for the older card.


Modified: 3.5 (makes the already powerful Fire decks even better)

Limited: 4 (180 HP means a heck of a lot here. Only really threatened by other EXs)


Hello once again, Pojo viewers! Today's Card of the Day is #9 on our Top 10 Cards of Next Destinies countdown, and today's card is another Pokemon-EX that is thought to make a certain archetype playable again. Today's Card of the Day is Reshiram-EX.
Reshiram-EX is a Basic Fire-type Pokemon-EX. As a Fire-type, Reshiram-EX can easily see play in Reshiphlosion and Reshiboar variants, although those decks have become less popular recently due to a number of factors. As a Pokemon-EX, your opponent takes 2 Prizes if they KO it, so you'd better make sure you can get your mileage out of Reshiram quickly (and hopefully take 2+ prizes with it). 180 HP is absolutely monstrous in this format, and due to the lack of a powerful Water-type (save Kyurem-EX), not much is going to take out this dragon in one shot. Water Weakness does make Kyurem-EX somewhat of a problem, but that card probably won't see much play unless Reshiram-EX here does. Reshiram also sadly has no Resistance and a hefty Retreat Cost of 3.
Reshiram-EX has two attacks. Glinting Claw starts off at 50 damage for a Fire and two Colorless, and can do 30 more if you flip heads. While not a powerful or consistent attack by any means, this attack can be used to get rid of weaker Pokemon, as well as Knocking Out the very annoying Durant in one hit. It's a shame that the attack doesn't do more damage for the cost, but it's largely usable with a Fire/Prism/Rainbow and a Double Colorless anyway. Brave Fire, Reshiram's second attack, deals a massive 150 damage for two Fire and two Colorless, but you flip a coin and deal 50 damage to yourself if tails. While this attack is once again quite flippy, 150 damage without a discard is brutal, even with the recoil damage. That being said, it's unfortunate that Reshiram doesn't have some kind of Outrage-like attack, as otherwise the self damage is really just aiding your opponent in Knocking Out Reshiram, which is something you'll want to avoid.
Modified: 3.75/5 Reshiram-EX is a very interesting mix of good and bad traits. 180 HP, Fire-typing, and a powerful Brave Fire are all major pluses, while flippy attacks and self damage make the Vast White Pokemon slightly less desirable. Reshiram is notable for not being Knocked Out in one hit by most of the metagame's prominent threats, however Mewtwo-EX will still be a major problem, especially if Reshiram is loaded with Energy. Overall, Reshiram-EX is a very powerful Pokemon that you should watch out for, as it will probably make appearances in Fire decks and Six Corners-type decks all over the tournament scene.
Limited: 5/5 Reshiram-EX is an absolute monster in Limited. 180 HP is really huge, and your opponent will likely have an incredibly difficult time taking the fire dragon down. The Colorless Energy requirements for both attacks are also very welcome in Limited, and Reshiram should be even more splashable with Prism Energy. Brave Fire's lack of a discard is also amazing for this format. All in all, Reshiram-EX is an amazing pick for Limited, and is worth running in just about any deck in the format.


2/14/12: Reshiram EX

We're on to the number 9 card of the set, Reshiram EX! This card...probably doesn't belong in the top 10. Allow me to explain.

The reason I don't like this card is based on a single comparison, with that of the Reshiram that's already doing very well in the format. In order for Reshiram EX to be useful, it has to do something that Reshiram does not already do, or it has to do what Reshiram does, only significantly better, because remember, your opponent takes two prizes when this Reshiram is KO'd, and I feel that the extra prize is a significant risk, even with 'comeback' cards like Twins being prevalent in the format.

So what does this one do better at? Well, it has 50 more HP, which helps. It has 1 extra retreat, which makes it worse, but only in the sense that not even Skyarrow Bridge can really help it much, which isn't gamebreaking, but a nice thing to have. But then we look at the attacks, and Glinting Claw is objectively worse than either attack Reshiram has. Then we get to Brave Fire, which I guess is the card's selling point in terms of gameplay? Basically, for one energy more than Blue Flare, the attack does 30 more damage and has a different drawback, damaging itself instead of discarding energy. That's simply not enough to distinguish itself from the current Reshiram. At best, the attacks are comparable, and that means Reshiram BW wins, because of the EX rule. At worst, the attack is an overly expensive attack on a Pokemon that's basically a caricature of a different, superior card. It is probably great in any Limited format, though.

Modified: 2.5/5
Limited: 4.5/5


I suppose given that it’s got the right coloring and people love Reshiram, Reshiram EX is an appropriate Valentine’s Day card. Even if it isn’t, too bad! Reshiram EX managed to take the number nine slot for our Top 10 Promising Picks of BW: Next Destinies.

Time to fire up the review!


Reshiram EX is first and foremost a Pokémon EX. It doesn’t count as the “old” Pokémon ex, but no card we currently have in Modified references that anyway. They are still worth two Prizes, just like their predecessors, and an effect like the Poké-Body Space Virus on Rayquaza & Deoxys LEGEND would result in three Prizes drawn. Since it is worth two Prizes, the rest of the cards stats and its effects will need to be significantly better than an equivalent single Prize Pokémon, and in this case that is a pretty high bar: the non-Pokémon EX Reshiram has helped shape this format!

Reshiram EX is a Fire-Type. This is perfectly reasonable given the Pokémon’s video game typing and how it currently translates into the TCG. Being a Fire-Type (as opposed to just using Fire Energy) doesn’t contribute much, but at least you’ll be able to roast Virizion and Cobalion quite easily. It is also a Basic Pokémon; the easiest Stage to fit into a deck since or get into play. Being a Pokémon EX, I’d expect it to be far better than an equivalent Basic Pokémon, and probably on par with a Stage 1, even one that didn’t further Evolve.

Reshiram EX has a massive 180 HP, and even for a Pokémon EX that is phenomenal. Amongst their predecessors, the Pokémon ex, the best for a Basic was still 120. Of course there has been a significant amount of power creep since then, but it is also the highest score amongst the Pokémon EX we currently have outside of Japan. This is just 20 points shy of the biggest, legal to play (though only in Unlimited now) Pokémon, Wailord ex, and is as large as a modern Wailord. Reshiram EX, outside of Weakness will only fall in one shot to the most massive attacks in the game when starting “fresh” with full HP. A proper build could make it incredibly hard to KO indeed.

Water Weakness is the expected Weakness for a Fire-Type, and unless this latest set finally helps Water step up its game, isn’t a serious issue. It does matter, since Prism Energy might make it easy enough for several decks to splash in a competent Water attacker, but that is tricky business in and of itself and not as significant as the three “worst” Weaknesses to have in the format right now, which I’d say are Fire, Lightning, and Psychic (not necessarily in that order). The lack of Resistance may actually be warranted here; indeed in the past some Pokémon ex (again, the predecessors of Pokémon EX but not technically the same mechanic) were given a double Weakness to offset their large HP or phenomenal abilities. So yeah, if not justified, I at least see no reason to complain about this card lacking Resistance.

I am tempted to complain about the large three Energy Retreat Cost, but I have a good reason not to; while three Energy is high enough that one will likely lack the Energy to even consider it or would be horrifically set-back by discarding it, it also makes Reshiram EX a legal target for Heavy Ball. Since the card also has such high HP, I think the increased ability to be searched for via an Item is an even trade off.


Reshiram EX has two attacks. The bad news is that the less expensive one (Glinting Claw) requires three Energy while the “big” attack (Brave Fire) requires four. The good news is what those Energy costs are: (RCC) for Glinting Claw and (RRCC) for Brave Fire. This means one not only can use Emboar with Inferno Fandango or Typhlosion Prime with Afterburner for speed, but even Double Colorless Energy and a manual attachment of something to provide Fire Energy can get the first attack ready in two turns.

So what do the attacks actually do? Glinting Claw has a base damage of 50 points, and does an extra 30 (for a total of 80) if you get “heads” on a mandatory coin toss. This is solid; barely “good” and definitely not “great”. As I said earlier, Reshiram EX should be at least close to what we see on Stage 1 Pokémon, and Glinting Claw would only be good there when backed up by great stats (which overall I’d say Reshiram EX does have) or a useful Ability or second attack. I will note that on a result of “heads”, no Fire Weak Pokémon without additional support would survive and even with support only the largest with multiple protective cards can manage it. Against non-Fire Weak Pokémon, 50 is still too much to ignore, setting up most commonly seen attackers (including itself) for a 2HKO. When you hit “heads”, 80 points of course is actually good for three Energy.

So what about Brave Fire? Again, it will be relying on the rest of the card to make it “good”, as well as whatever Energy acceleration you combine the card with. You get an attractive 150 points of damage from Brave Fire, but in addition to a quadruple Energy cost the attack has some serious kick to it: you must flip a coin and if it comes up “tails”, Reshiram EX hits itself for 50 points of damage! Breaking it down on paper, you are technically getting a fantastic bargain. You invest enough Energy that, on a Basic that could still Evolve, you’d expect at least 50 points of damage. The risk the coin toss adds justifies another 20 or 30 points, so in return for being both a Basic (incapable of Evolving) and a Pokémon EX (worth two Prizes) you’re getting an extra 70 or 80 points of damage. Definitely a reasonable, if not a quite good, return when viewed based purely on cost-to-damage.

You have to consider the format, however; even though it only occurs on an unfortunate flip, about half the time you use Brave Fire just once you’re dropping Reshiram EX down to an effective 130 HP, the equivalent of a non-Pokémon EX Reshiram, which we know can be reasonably OHKOed by the right cards. Of course, with the right support you’ll be able to reduce the risk, but it really hurts when you consider how close this card was to being an off-Type splash. Plus the plain Reshiram, re-released in this set and available in one of this set’s starter decks, has an attack for (RRC) called Blue Flare, and it hits for 120. You have to discard two Fire Energy, but if the deck can handle that, it is a better deal.


Mostly I expect players running Big Fire decks that rely on acceleration such as Emboar with Inferno Fandango or Typhlosion with Afterburner to make room for Reshiram EX. I do not, however, expect the plain Reshiram to go anywhere; perhaps a single copy would be dropped, but in a deck that can handle the Energy discards it is a better deal except when you need to quickly slam down an opposing Pokémon EX or other problem card. Eviolite is twice as useful to Reshiram EX; making an already large Pokémon last an extra turn against all but the hardest hitting attacks while dropping the self-damage to a 30 points (an average of a manageable 15 points per turn). In such decks, a Max Potion can save a nearly KOed Reshiram EX from its fate, while the Energy acceleration quickly re-readies it. The risk of a string of “tails” on both attacks, though, makes it too unreliable to form the main part of your offensive.

If you fancy Victini (BW: Noble Victories 14/101, 98/101), you can reduce your risk of getting “tails”, but runs of “bad luck” will still happen from time to time. The mixed blessing of this strategy is that an opponent may decide Victini is more important to KO, and if that is the case you could go ballistic with Reshiram EX in with less fear of them exploiting the self-damage. I would not anticipate a skilled player making such a mistake often. So for Big Fire decks, I think two copies of Reshiram EX are enough, though maybe three if you are quite worried about one being Prized. Reshiram EX exists for those match-ups when a normal Reshiram isn’t strong enough, when raw brute force is required. The rest of the time, stick with what works (the original Reshiram).

There is another angle to consider even in Big Fire decks: Reshiram EX faces two other sources of competition. Mewtwo EX is quite a beast in and of itself, and while not optimal it can make do with just Fire Energy to fuel its first attack. After all, the most likely thing to require brute force is a Pokémon EX, as we’ll explore in future CotDs, they all have particular hang ups to exploit. Regigigas EX has all Colorless Energy costs, so it could slip in as well. It has a self-damaging attack that Eviolite can completely block, though you might not want to do that since the second attack isn’t much more expensive and does more damage based on the damage Regigigas EX has sustained. Especially if a Big Fire deck wants a big hitter that is also off-type (for whatever reason), Reshiram EX is facing more competition.

Then there is Rayquaza & Deoxys LEGEND, which I keep bringing up in the stats. There is a reason for that; Big Fire decks are where it has seen the most successful play, and while Ozone Buster can’t OHKO most Pokémon EX alone, it still hits for 150 points of damage. We received six different Pokémon EX in BW: Next Destinies, and each has an issue that can help Rayquaza & Deoxys LEGEND. Shaymin EX is a OHKO due to raw damage. Mewtwo EX one is a OHKO due to Weakness. Reshiram EX and Regigigas EX both inflict self damage, the former enough to allow for the OHKO without outside interference and the latter wants to be damaged because then it hits harder! Zekrom EX and Kyurem EX both might not be able to hit hard back due to Energy discards for the former, and a restricting clause on the latter. On top of that, the entire point of using Rayquaza & Deoxys LEGEND is to go for a surprise win: if you’re using a Pokémon EX, as you can see you basically have to be careful once you drop to three Prizes!

So all that relates to a lot of stiff competition for Reshiram EX in mainstream Fire decks: the plain version of Reshiram is the safer beatstick, Mewtwo EX and Regigigas EX can be a big, off-type, somewhat risky beatstick and “crazy works” for Rayquaza & Deoxys LEGEND. I did hint that there may be another use for this card. Well, it is a Basic Pokémon that has two big attacks that may require three and four Energy, but only one and then two of those Energy need to actually provide Fire Energy, respectively. Plus that massive three Energy Retreat cost that is a burden allows Heavy Ball, an Item, to pluck it from your deck. Coupled with Prism Energy, Rainbow Energy, and Double Colorless Energy once could easily run it in a deck that lacked any other Fire Pokémon or Energy.

Normal Reshiram suffers because it discards its own Energy, as do most other big, Basic Fire-Type Pokémon I can think of that would fit in such a deck. So if you’re mostly running this to hit Weakness, it does the job admirable with even just its first attack. If you can afford the cost, no Fire Weak Pokémon (unless of course it is negating its Weakness through an effect) can survive a shot from Brave Fire, even if it has four copies each of Special Energy Metal Energy and Defender! If you’re not that worried about facing such odds, the normal Reshiram is probably better, since with its Outrage attack can use any Energy and it just needs to soak one hit before it can OHKO the Fire Weak Pokémon most likely to be encountered. If you did encounter something massive that was Fire weak, you’d be justified giving up the two copies of Rainbow Energy/Prism Energy needed to use Blue Flare.

So what about in Unlimited play? I’d say it is less useful than in Modified, but that is because of the nature of Unlimited. You have decks that can either flat out win first turn, strip away your hand before you ever get to play, or lock down one or more resources. You have Focus Band and classical Baby Pokémon protected by “the Baby Rule”, and that means no matter how hard you can hit, you’re still a coin toss away from a KO. You have access to all the past Fire Pokémon, some which might be more suited to this job than Reshiram EX, and you have lower average HP scores being played (indeed, that is why some older Pokémon might be preferable – 150 is going to regularly be overkill).

At last we come to Limited play. Due to so many Evolution cards in a set being unplayable (due to a lack of needed support, often including but not limited to Evolution line itself), the average HP scores and damage output are lower. The massive HP will last even longer unless you run into Water Pokémon, and even if you have to manually power it while Active, you should still live long enough for at least a single attack. Your attacks will function as if they were doing more damage, so together this means you might get off two or three Glinting Claw before going for broke with Brave Fire, and could very well score just as many Prizes. Being able to get by on a single Fire Energy (even though that means no Brave Fire) makes this card very easy to work into most probable decks you could build, and you still might occasionally get off a Brave Fire with a little luck. Just remember Limited matches start with four Prize cards a piece; just as a Reshiram EX can single handedly win the game, losing it will be halfway to victory for your opponent.


Unlimited: 3/5

Modified: 3.75/5

Limited: 4.5/5


Reshiram EX is a great card, but it is entering a crowded arena. Two of the Pokémon EX it came out alongside only require a little more time or Energy to hit just as hard, but can fit in any deck (not just Big Fire). In Big Fire decks, you’ve got Reshiram to hit turn after turn for 120 points of damage without giving up two Prizes, and you should be able to handle the Energy discard cost. Plus Reshiram is a Basic with 130 HP, so you have to ask is the extra 50 HP and doing self-damage instead of discarding Energy worth being a Pokémon EX? Even when it comes to “crazy beatsticks worth two Prizes” (a very specific category) there is Rayquaza & Deoxys LEGEND, which can now net you up to three Prizes in a single shot, plus the aforementioned other two Pokémon EX that can probably fit into the same decks!

So Reshiram EX is great, but not a “great among greats”. If it hadn’t been printed, I doubt the format would turn out much different than I expect it to with it. As such, it didn’t even make my own Top 10 list.

Please check out my eBay sales by clicking here. It’s me whittling away at about two decades worth of attempted collecting, spanning action figures, comic books, TCGs, and video games. Exactly what is up is a bit random. Pojo.com is in no way responsible for any transactions; Pojo is merely doing me a favor by letting me link at the end of my reviews.

Mad Mattezhion
 Professor Bathurst League Australia
#9: Reshiram EX (Next Destinies)
Today we have the EX version of the Great White Beast. However, unlike the regular version (which also gets a fifth version printed in this set as well as apperaing in a theme deck, giving you no excuse not to own it!), I don't like Reshiram EX in the slightest.
The stats are beautiful, no arguing with that. 180 HP is awesome in any language, and the Fire typing makes energy acceleration a breeze. The retreat cost is heavy as expected, but that gets some strange compensation from the new Heavy Ball and Skyarrow Bridge and at this size, even 5 energy isn't too much to ask, let alone 3. Water Weakness sucks against Feraligatr Prime and Lanturn Prime, but so far Water Poke'mon in general are flying under the radar so facing double damage shenanigans won't usually be an issue. All in all, Reshiram will hit the table and stay there until forcibly removed!
But what will Reshiram do while it's in play? Sadly, not much to judge by the attacks. Glinting Claw is a far cry from Outrage, and while I know that pairing the Outrage we all know and fear with 180 HP is ridiculously unfair, replacing it with an overcosted vanilla attack is not going to garner any fans. For the cost of [r][c][c], you deal 50 damage with 30 more damage being dependent on a coin flip. Even at the maximum damage this is not good value which forces me to assume that this attack is a deliberate attempt to nerf the card in compensation for the ridiculously powerful second attack.
The cost of [r][r][c][c] is reasonable and easy enough to pay, between the power of the Typhlosion Prime, Emboar BW and Double Colourless Energy. That attack is Brave Fire, which deals a whopping 150 damage, capable of destroying pretty much anything you'll come up against except another Poke'mon EX. True, there are also some freakishly healthy Poke'mon like Wailord UD, Nidoking TM and Conkeldurr NV as well as Poke'mon Legend under the effect of Indigo Plateua, but you'll almost never see them so their ability to take 2 hits doesn't matter. What does matter is adding the extra damage necessary to take out Regigigas, Mewtwo and Zekrom EX when you come up against them.
The problem with boosting Reshiram's damage comes from the drawback of the attack. Brave Fire causes you to flip a coin as an additional drawback, and on a Tails result Reshiram hits itself for 50 damage. So the usual measures such as Pluspower and Black Belt stand to add to the damage you do to yourself if you fail that flip, chopping Reshiram's health down by more than a third!
True, you could use Rocky Helmet to both discourage attacks and add damage , but the make-or-break question hanging over Reshiram's head is this: can you brave your way through 2 Prizes before Reshiram EX hits the discard pile?
Modified: 3.25 (I didn't put Reshiram on my own list, but if you can get a pair of KOs before losing that 180 HP you'll be equal in Prizes and probably ahead in setup. Still, if you get on the wrong side of those flips you'll go down hard!)
Limited: 4 (Glinting Claw alone is worth the price of admission, and Brave Fire will prove devastating to the big hitters. Keep up the energy though, you'll need to retreat when the HP gets low)
Combos with: fits snugly into the existing ReshiPhlosion deck as an extra source of pain, but you won't want to use Revive on this costly beast and you could be just as happy without it.

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