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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day


Top 10 New Cards of 2014

#9 - Bronzong- Phantom Forces

Date Reviewed:
Dec. 16, 2014

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Standard: 3.92
Expanded: 4.25
Limited: 3.88

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

Baby Mario
2010 UK National

#9 Bronzong PHF 

Including cards from the most recent set always involves taking a bit of a gamble, because at the time of compiling the list, they have had little opportunity to prove themselves in tournament play. That said, Bronzong PHF seems to be doing reasonably well for itself, with early City Championship results showing that Bronzong/Metal decks are capable of picking up wins and top cut placings.

This shouldn’t be too much of a surprise. After all, Bronzong is basically the same thing as the wildly successful Eelektrik NVI, which was the foundation of top tier decks (first with Zekrom BLW, then with Rayquaza EX) for pretty much the whole of its time in rotation. Bronzong may not have quite the same calibre of partner, but the ones it does have are just about good enough. With Bronzong providing super-efficient Energy acceleration from the discard pile, cards like Dialga EX PHF, Heatran PHF, and Aegislash EX can be viable, powerful attackers despite their Energy intensive nature. The deck has some good match ups against currently popular stuff like Donphan PLS and Seismitoad EX, but is vulnerable to Garbodor and especially fears its autoloss against the dreaded Pyroar FLF. 

Depending on when you started playing the game, Bronzong either revives an old deck type or brings something new to the competitive scene. Because of this, a spot lurking towards the bottom of our top 10 seems justified. 


Modified: 3.5 (great acceleration engine, but slightly lacking when it comes to partners)

Limited: 2.75 (Eelektik has waaay better toys to play with) 


...wait, we did just talk about this guy. Like, a month ago. It's...Bronzong!


Alright, I'll admit I haven't been on the scene to see the new Bronzong get played around with too much, but I'm gonna take a look at some of the cards you can combine Bronzong with to make him really "ring."


First off, we gotta figure out how to get Bronzong into play. Now searching out those Bronzong isn't easy without a search card of some kind, and unfortunately we've lost things like Level Ball and Heavy Ball which would immediately get Bronzong into the hand. Ultra Ball is our biggest search card, but it costs 2 cards from your hand already and only puts Bronzong in your hand. So what's the next best thing? Pulling an Evosoda and feeding your Bronzor with it!


Now how to get Bronzor into your hand so you can play it onto the Bench and Evosoda (or even just evolve) it into Bronzong. Obviously Sycaper is great for drawing cards, but if you want to go even faster, then start running Bicycle and Roller Skates. Roller Skates is a 50/50 to draw 3 cards, and Bicycle will get you to draw until you have 4 cards in your hand. They both may sound like risky moves, but consider that they're both Items, meaning you can play as many as you want each turn and still get your Sycaper if you want!


Beyond that, you've gotta figure out how to get those Metal Energies into the discard pile (not a problem with Sycaper and Battle Compressor) and who to attach them to. Obviously the new guys like Dialga-EX and Aegislash-EX are fine targets, as is Mewtwo-EX, but if you don't want to put all your eggs in one basket, you can split it up among Cobalion-EX and Skarmory-EX, discarding Special Energies or breaking through Pyroar's Intimidating Mane with Cobalion-EX and wrecking apart Tool set-ups with Skarmory-EX!


Obviously Bronzong has weaknesses based on its own support (those Items will get locked after all), but play him smart, and your Metal deck will run just as smoothly as Eelektrik with Rayquaza-EX!




Standard: 4.5/5 (still great support for Metal decks!)


Expanded: 4.5/5 (same goes for here)


Limited: 4/5 (I know you read the last review)


Arora Notealus: It's amazing what a little Energy acceleration will do for a deck. Blastoise, Emboar, Eelektrik, Landorus, Blacksmith, and now Bronzong gets to join the list of awesome Energy powerhouses!


Next Time: Well now that's gonna get scary fast!


Welcome to our Top 10 Cards Of 2014 Countdown!  The lists have been collected from the CotD crew and compiled to give us our list to review.  Just like with our Top 10 lists for individual sets, reprints are excluded: this can seem a bit unfair as sometimes they are very important cards, but without this rule cards like Double Colorless Energy, Professor Juniper (later Professor Sycamore) and a few others would get reviewed two or three times a year, always as a part of these lists.  For my own list, my main guideline was card “impact”, how it affected the game.  I evaluated the card according to breadth of impact (how widespread its usage/response to its usage was), depth of impact (how deeply it affected the decks that used it/needed to counter it) and time of impact (how long did it affect how we played).  Yes, that last category favors older cards versus newer cards, but the newer ones have the advantage of being fresh in my mind, plus again we are considering all of 2014, not just how the year ended. 

The second card we are covering (making it our 9th place finisher) is Bronzong (XY: Phantom Forces 61/1149,  XY Promos XY21), which we recently reviewed here.  So what has changed?  Not much, really; as far as I can tell Bronzong is performing more or less as expected; in video game terms it is like a reskinned, slightly tweaked version of Eelektrik (BW: Noble Victories 40/101), so its quite familiar to players that were around for Eelektrik decks.  So far it hasn’t really branched out like Eelektrik did, having so many variants, and even if it does I don’t really expect the decks to differ enough in how they are played and what they do to really count as full, separate archetypes… though eventually it might.

Breadth: It affects… a little over one deck.  Metal Weakness is out there and it finally matters but the counter to Metal is Fire, which was already tempting because of the need to take on the Fire Weak Genesect-EX and Virizion-EX.  Plus most decks just cope with Weakness, accepting a bad match-up and just trying to work around it unless said Weakness is quite common in the metagame.  I’m thinking people are not running Fire-Types just to deal with Bronzong decks, but I could be wrong.  So there isn’t much breath to its impact. 

Depth: It grants a new deck… that plays very similarly to an old deck and doesn’t even feel all that different from many current decks.  Its a pretty standard Beatdown deck, just one backed by Energy acceleration instead of (for example) Ability denial.  It is a vital part of Metal-Type decks, but even there its got this one role it does well and its not good for anything else, and that deck works by taking a bunch of cards that would otherwise be “near misses”, and turns them into “hits”. 

Time: XY: Phantom Forces became legal for Organized Play November 26th, 21 days after it was officially released in the United States of America.  So as of writing this, it hasn’t even been tournament legal (outside of Pre-Releases) for an entire month.  It has only been generally available a little over one month.  In short… its a newb. 



Standard: 3.75/5 - Deck specific; for more details see my previous review.  I was tempted to score it “in general” or as a composite score (which would be much lower) to help emphasize it’s got its own niche but doesn’t belong anywhere else… but instead of making things more clear, I suspect it would just make them more confusing. 

Expanded: 4/5 - As above; I will mention that Heavy Ball seems like it should really help Metal-Type decks built around Bronzong, which is why I scored it higher (again) for its own specific deck. 

Limited: 4.25/5 - Again, please refer to the previous review; I’ll just mention that this is not as deck specific. 

Summary: Bronzong is a very good card in its own deck, but its too clunky to try to work it in for a little acceleration elsewhere.  As you probably deduced by now… this did not make my own list.  Maybe it should have, but not only is it not directly affecting most decks, it isn’t causing them to change things up (thus affecting them indirectly).  It didn’t give us a fresh new deck, but brought back something we had not too long ago, that even with the Energy acceleration is yet another beatdown deck.  Lastly, it hasn’t even been legal for Organized Play for a full month.  Another year, its accomplishments would easily justify including it but this year?  I just feel like we had other cards that deserved to make the list even more.  The number 10 pick (Startling Megaphone) should have come in above this… or at least I think it should have.

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