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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

 

Darmanitan #60

Next Destinies

Date Reviewed: March 28, 2012

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 3.25
Limited: 3.87

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
Seniors
Champion

Darmanitan (Next Destinies)

Who knew? That weird hyperactive fire monkey-thing Darmanitan apparently has the ability to go all calm and zen-like. When it does so, it turns itself into a Psychic Pokémon, which leads us to today’s card.

Darmanitan is a Stage 1 Pokémon with 110 HP. That seems solid enough until you remember that anything with less than 130 these days is just Dragon food for Reshiram and Zekrom. The Retreat cost of three is, of course, too horrible to ever pay with actual Energy. Darmanitan’s Psychic Typing is a bit of a double-edged sword in this format. It means that it is in a position to KO Mewtwo-EX, which is great. On the other hand, it is a frighteningly easy KO for Mewtwo itself.

Synchrodraw is Darmanitan’s first attack, and it will remind players of Chatot MD’s Mimic. Chatot was a great (and probably underplayed) card that you could use as a free retreating starter thanks to Mimic’s effect of shuffling your hand into your deck and drawing the same number of cards as your opponent. Put the same attack on a Stage 1 with a massive Retreat cost though, and it becomes a lot less appealing. Still, if you have a bad hand and you really don’t have the Energy for anything else, it could serve as a desperation move.

The real attraction with this card is the brilliantly named DarMAXitan attack. (Are players required to announce it with massive emphasis on the second syllable? I hope so). The base cost of this attack can be paid with a Double Colourless Energy and for that you get a coin flip for each Energy attached to Darmanitan, with the pay-off being a huge 50 damage for each heads. To make the most of this, you need two things: a way to have as much Energy as possible on Darmanitan, and a method of making the flips less risky. Luckily the format provides answers to both. Not only can you abuse DCE to increase the number of flips, but there is also Gardevoir ND whose Psychic Mirage Ability makes all Psychic Energy count double. As for the flips . . . well, Fliptini is the usual suspect here: didn’t get enough damage for the KO first time? Hey, why not try again?

It all sounds great in theory and of course it completely mullers Mewtwo (note: average luck required) if it can get set up. The trouble is that it does take a bit of setting up to work really well, especially if Darmanitan is attacking things other than Mewtwo and not hitting for Weakness. Keeping Gardy and Fliptini safe on the Bench while swarming Energy-intensive Stage 1s, is very difficult in this format full of big-hitters and Pokémon Catcher. This means that, despite the fact that you can make some interesting and fun combos with Darmanitan, the deck isn’t really going to be absolutely top class.

Rating

Modified: 3 (semi-competitive, and a fun deck for League. Just remember to say the attack properly)

Limited: 3.75 (why not try your luck?)

virusyosh

Happy midweek, Pojo readers! Today we're going to review a card that saw a bunch of play at my local States, much to my surprise. Today's Card of the Day is Darmanitan from Next Destinies.
 
Darmanitan is a Stage 1 Psychic Pokemon. The most commonly played Psychic these days is Mewtwo-EX, so therefore, for a Psychic to be playable in this format, it has to be able to at least stand its ground against Mewtwo-EX (which is a rather difficult feat). Darmanitan can come close with the right support. 110 HP is slightly above average for a Stage 1, and puts Darmanitan in the range where it can survive a weak attack, but not a strong one. Psychic Weakness is a huge problem as Mewtwo-EX will be a problem for Darmanitan, especially as one of the Blazing Pokemon's attacks relies on lots of Energy. Sadly, Darmanitan has no Resistance, and a huge Retreat Cost of 3. Be sure to use Switch to get Darmanitan out of the Active Position.
 
Darmanitan has two attacks. The first, Synchrodraw, allows you to shuffle your hand into your deck and draw cards equal to the number of cards in your opponent's hand. This is a great attack for Limited, but is generally not worth it in Modified, as one can simply play Copycat to attain the same effect without using an attack to draw cards. DarMAXitan is Darmanitan's form of offense, and it's fairly potent given the right set up. For two Colorless Energy, you flip a coin for each Energy attached to Darmanitan, dealing 50 damage times the number of heads. While at States, I saw a number of people pairing this with Gardevoir ND and Victory Star Victini to maximize the value of Psychic Energy and coin flips, and the deck can deal massive amounts of damage in this way. However, given how common Mewtwo is in the format, Darmanitan will have to find some way to deal with the genetic cat - and inconsistency of coin flips - before it can make its way to the top.
 
Modified: 3/5 Darmanitan isn't bad, but doesn't quite have what it takes to make a top deck. DarMAXitan can be powerful with the right set up, but given that many decks are so fast nowadays, most top-tier decks will be able to hit Darmanitan for a lot of damage before it's able to set up properly. Gardevoir and Victini help, but they still can't often match the format's major heavy hitters like Mewtwo-EX or Zekrom-EX.
 
Limited: 4/5 Darmanitan is quite good for Limited. Synchrodraw is a great attack for Limited, as hand refresh is very rare and your opponent will likely have a massive handsize in this format. Additionally, DarMAXitan can use any type of Energy, and can deal tons of damage if you're good with flips. Overall, Darmanitan has its pitfalls, but is a very solid addition to any Limited deck.
 
Combos With: Gardevoir ND, Victory Star Victini


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