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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day


Top 10 Plasma Storm
#4 -

- Plasma Storm

Date Reviewed:
February 12, 2013

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Modified: 4.25
Limited: 4.85

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

#4 Colress 

Coming in a #4 is the second card in the set to feature Colress. This time he appears personally, showing off a hairstyle that is bizarre even by anime standards. It’s fair to say that this is the most controversial card from the set in that it divides player opinion between those who think it’s great and those who wouldn’t run more than one in a deck. I admit, I’m in the latter category and didn’t even put this on my top 10 list. 

But I can totally understand why people do rate this card. Frankly, our draw Supporter options are very shallow at the moment: we have the discard draw of Juniper, the tricky-to-play N, and the mediocre draw of Bianca and Cheren. What we don’t have is a nice staple shuffle-draw card that is always useful. Corless almost, but not quite, fulfils that role. What Colress does is shuffles your hand into your deck and then lets you draw a number of cards equal to the number of Benched Pokémon on both sides of the Field. So . . . let’s break that down.  

On the first turn Colress is very likely to be terrible – netting you maybe only two or three cards at best. This is so bad that you won’t want to use it unless you are actually desperate. Unlike Juniper, this card is not going to generate a great first or even second turn set up, and it is definitely not the Supporter you want to see in your opening hand. Mid game, things are much, much better. You can probably count on a shuffle-draw of a minimum of six cards and possibly as many as ten. This makes it effectively a very superior Professor Oak’s New Theory – a staple card of the HGSS-on rotation. Towards the end of the game, things get a little more tricky. Drawing ten cards off a Colress may well be something you will have to pass on, simply because it could lead to a loss by deck-out. Of course, it could also win you the game by getting that last Catcher (or whatever) that you needed – just be aware that you need to be careful and know for certain that your target card is not in your Prizes. 

For me, the fact that Colress is an appalling early game card means that I will not be using it in place of the Juniper or N that can actually help me to set up. I can see myself running one or (at most) two to help in mid-to-late game situations, and possibly cutting back a little on Bianca or Cheren. Because of this, I find that I can’t rate this card nearly as highly as the two dominant Supporters of the format. 

Oh, and a word of advice. Because we are so used to N being the only shuffle draw Supporter, there’s a danger that some players might automatically start shuffling in their own hand when the opponent plays Colress. Be on the alert and don’t do this – it will most likely mean a game loss. 


Modified: 3.75 (a welcome addition to the Supporter line up, but you won’t want to see it until after you set up)

Limited: 4.75 (it’s draw. Take it) 

Jebulous Maryland Player


Colress is a Supporter that lets you shuffle your hand into your deck, then draw cards equal to the number of Benched Pokemon in play.

Since Professor Oak's New Theory was rotated out, the only Supprter that let you shuffle your hand in your deck then draw has been N. POTN was good because it meant you could save cards rather than discard them (Professor Juniper). It also allowed you to save your N's for late game if your opponent was winning. Since it was rotated out, N has become a card that could tilt both ways, which has led to a lot of decision making.

Colress brings back was POTN did, only with a twist. Early game, when there are a few Benched Pokemon, Colress is not so great. If you are able to fill your Bench then play Colress, then it's really good. If not, you get stuck with it in your hand. Or worst case scenario, you both start with no Bench and your only Supporter is Colress.

Mid to late game Colress can really shine. The maximum draw you can get is 10 cards if you both have full benches. While that probably won't happen too often (Pokemon are usually getting Knocked out throughout the game). Going against a deck that needs a full Bench (Garchomp, any Stage 2 decks...) will only help Colress out.

So Colress is a situational draw Supporter. It can net you a lot of cards without having to play down your hand beforehand.

Modified: 4.5/5
Limited: 4.5/5
Combos With: ...

Questions, comments, concerns: jebulousthemighty@yahoo.com


Greetings, Pojo viewers! Today we're looking at the #4 card on our Top 10 Cards of Plasma Storm countdown, and it is a Supporter that is expected to see a whole lot of play in most decks. Today's Card of the Day is Colress.

Colress is a Supporter, meaning that you can only play one per turn, and once you do, you can't play any more Supporters for that turn. Colress's effect is that of a very powerful shuffle and draw: you shuffle your hand into your deck, and then draw cards equal to the number of Benched Pokemon in play (both yours and your opponent's). This means that with full Benches, you'll end up drawing ten cards! Even if Benches aren't full, this card will often act like a better N in terms of card advantage (even though N's late-game defensive use is something Colress can't do), and will allow you to refresh your hand with crazy amounts of cards most of the time. Also, considering the widespread play that Colress is going to get, I can't see your opponent holding back Basics any more than they normally would, since they'll be trying to get lots of cards, too.

Modified: 5/5 Colress is amazing. While it's a bad early game draw unlike N, it fills a niche that is very welcome for the metagame, and will likely take some spots away from Professor Juniper, Cheren, and Bianca. Even as such, our current Modified metagame is somewhat lacking great draw Supporters right now, but Colress goes a long way to rectify that situation. Expect to see this card a lot.

Limited: 5/5 Colress is equally amazing here in Limited. Limited is a Pokemon-driven format, so you will be using Colress to maximum effect most of the time here, and since Limited decks are smaller, drawing a quarter of your deck in one shot is very powerful in terms of card advantage. You'll definitely want to play Colress here.


Welcome to the number four pick for our Top 10 Cards of Plasma Storm countdown, Colress (BW: Plasma Storm 118/135, 135/135).  This card has already divided the player base, and across varying skill levels.  Read on to find out why.



Colress is a Trainer, specifically a Supporter.  As a Team Plasma card it can tap their support, but in no way requires Team Plasma cards.  I have to stress that as Supporters can only be used once per turn (unlike Items) and are usually the driving force behind set-up and maintenance of your resources, a Supporter can seldom be sparred to do something non-essential to winning, and has to do it quite, quite well.  An otherwise amazing effect can be horrible because it was slapped on a Supporter and not a Pokémon, Item, Stadium, or even Energy card.



Colress allows you to shuffle your hand into your deck and draw one card for the combined total of Pokémon on the Bench; for both players, not just you or your opponent.  This gives it a range from zero to 10.  Few decks are designed to play a single Pokémon at a time; most competitive decks require (or at least prefer) two or three Pokémon on the Bench, and a few even require full or nearly full Benches.  An opponent not intentionally altering how they play to counter Colress and a deck not completely ill-suited or tailored to it will somewhat reliably give you a four to six card draw.



Colress is similar to an older card, Steven’s Advice, which allowed you to draw up to one card for each of your opponent’s Pokémon in play, but it also had a clause preventing you from playing it if you had more than six other cards in hand.  Its wording allowed you to choose to draw less than the full amount you had coming, but since you didn’t see the cards as you drew them, you had to make the decision before seeing what you were getting.


I remember some players being wary of Steven’s Advice at first.  It existed alongside Copycat (shuffle your hand into your deck and draw cards equal to your opponent’s current hand size) so you risked helping your opponent, but the real concerns were it being a bad opening draw, your opponent avoiding Benching Pokémon just to shortchange you in draw power, and it being a dead card completely due to swelling hand sizes.  It still proved to be one of the most popular and powerful draw cards of its formats, though it was seldom maxed out.


So why is the history lesson relevant to Colress?  It is hard to concisely sum up five formats worth of experience.  A good shuffle-and-draw Supporter is important; “filter feeding” through your deck has long been a potent strategy.  Historically, shuffle-and-draw effects allow for more cards drawn than straightforward draw cards unless the latter have a very nasty cost (like discarding your hand) and promotes better deck management.


Depending upon your opponent, the requirements of Colress make for a win-win scenario if the rest of your deck is well made; in this case either you get currently unrivaled draw power or you get average-to-good draw power and your opponent is taking a risk of a quick KO winning the match, or at least leaving them with next to nothing.  While unlikely, you might also even use Colress to replenish your deck.


Colress is not a card to throw into any deck; some decks are built to run with small, almost non-existent Benches; running Colress in such decks is foolhardy unless you really do want to throw a big hand back in the deck.  Remember you control how many Pokémon are on your Bench with how you build the rest of your deck.  If you already want to load your Bench, it shouldn’t be hard to make sure that an opening Colress isn’t terrible.


As it is a common concern, it is always important to consider the minimum a card can get you, and the minimum it is likely to get you, and what all that means.  Colress might get you no cards; this is almost always terrible.  Early game or late game depending on circumstances, you probably are only drawing two or three cards off of it… and for some decks, that isn’t terrible.  It certainly isn’t good, but three cards are three cards.  Tropical Beach makes an excellent safety net here: a “bad” Colress sets up for a good Tropical Beach draw.


Comparing them to the other Supporters is also revealing: Bianca can be completely dead, while Colress never will be (a bad return, but never literally unplayable).  Cheren unfortunately should be a deck staple but this format is so crazy fast that drawing three cards without an additional cost.  Both of these also clash with Professor Juniper (the premier draw card and backbone of most deck’s set-up): the bigger your hand, the greater your risk of building up cards you’ll have to discard.  This is why Colress is a natural compliment to Professor Juniper as it can periodically trim your hand down.


N is the only other shuffle-and-draw Supporter in the format, and it is also a great card.  It compliments Colress in that the nature of the game is likely to make Colress good at times when N is not; mid-to-late game odds are better there are enough Pokémon on the Bench for Colress to outdraw N, which is based on your remaining Prizes.  When you can’t afford to help your opponent, again Colress comes through when N always carries that risk.


The final major supporter, Skyla is about getting the exact Trainer you need at the moment, not draw power.  N, Skyla, and Professor Juniper really should be your primary Supporters, but that doesn’t mean all three need to be maxed out.  Anymore, I like to begin designing my decks with a 3-3-3-3 split of Colress, N, Skyla, and Professor Juniper; I’ve always had issues with the other Supporters.  I also like to have two slots for either two copies of Random Receiver or Bicycle or one of each.


I don’t expect my finished decks to adhere to that pattern, but it is where I’ll begin; 14 slots allocated for set-up.  Colress I suspect will usually drop down to just two in a deck, but it is worth beginning with the assumption of three.  I regularly expect to bump up N or Professor Juniper, and even Skyla more than Colress.  The two pseudo-Supporters top things off nicely, though if they are less useful than actual Supporters, obviously I’ve got room to just replace them.


I don’t think Colress fits in well with Unlimited; I would rather use Steven’s Advice if playing in a less cutthroat environment where I expect my opponent to have a Bench, and if I need a shuffle-and-draw Supporter I would prefer N or Professor Oak’s New Theory.  I don’t think first turn win decks really use shuffle-and-draw power, anyway.  In Limited, though, this is a must run card, which is not unusual for Supporters or sources of draw power in Limited.




Unlimited: 1.5/5


Modified: 4/5


Limited: 5/5




Colress should become a common sight in most decks; running two still allows you access to its power without regularly finding it your only opening Supporter and a deck can be built with it in mind without running an inferior list.  Some decks should avoid it, but it fills a sorely needed gap in our Supporter options and is only surpassed by the three best Supporters in the current format.  The other “extra” Supporters that have seen play like Cheren and Bianca just found themselves even more marginalized.


Colress was actually my number two pick for this set, above everything we’ve looked at so far.  I was only mildly surprised to see it in the number four spot; I seem to be on the “pro” Colress side of the debate so I thought it might only take third place, but fourth still seemed a bit low.

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