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Yu Yu Hakusho
Harry Potter
Vs. System

Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day



- XY BREAKthrough

Date Reviewed:
January 18, 2016

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Standard: 1.38
Expanded: 1.63
Limited: 3.38

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale.
1 being horrible.  3 ... average.  5 is awesome.

Back to the main COTD Page


Awwww, Parasect. You're extraordinarily underwhelming on just about any card, aren't you? 

I almost feel bad for Parasect. Cursed with Bug/Grass typing, his most notable feature in the games being that he's the only Pokemon that can take 5x damage thanks to a 4x weakness to Fire-typing and having the Ability Dry Skin, Parasect has probably only been noteworthy for being raised by that one Trainer outside the Cerulean Cave where Mewtwo is and for appearing in the Safari Zone. 

Other than that...Parasect is just...bad. 

Over the course of many years in the TCG, Parasect has always had low HP and low damage outputs, with no attack to date going above 60 damage on its own. Even X-Scissor does nothing for Parasect, being a 2-for-30 strike that gets a 50/50 shot at doing an extra 30 damage. So why take a look at Parasect today? Why bother with looking at him? 

Colorful Spores certainly seems interesting enough...at first glance. For one Energy, you can choose 3 of your Pokemon and attach to each of them a different type of basic Energy. I suppose if you're running anything non-mono-Typed, this could be useful, but this sort of thing implies you're running at least 3 different Types...which...I can't think of why you'd do that. 

...unless you're playing Simis... 


Standard: 1/5 (he's...absurdly niche, and the fact is you still need to attack with him, which means you might as well hand your opponent a Prize card) 

Expanded: 1.5/5 (I mean, maybe, MAYBE there's a good multityped deck out there, I dunno, Vespiquen-Vengeance or maybe Night March...wait, no, Night March is only Psychics and Joltik) 

Limited: 2/5 (...I have NO idea) 

Arora Notealus: Parasect continues to be one of the worst guys out there, no matter where you look. Even on Smogon, he's outclassed by a LOT of Pokemon, and it's hard to really defend a Pokemon that's got a competitive guide that only says bad things about him. 

...then you realize it's the mushroom in control... 



Welcome to another week of reviews, and appropriately enough we open with an opener, Parasect (XY: BREAKthrough 2/162)!  Normally I try to avoid stating such things right away, preferring to break everything down and then hit you with my conclusions after you’ve had a chance to draw your own but… I really wanted to lead with that line. 

So what does it mean to be a Grass-Type?  In terms of exploiting Weakness,  Water-Types (especially in Standard) have Grass Weakness; not all but a quick Pokédedia based search suggests around 40% of Water-Types are Grass Weak in Expanded, and - as Lightning Weakness for Water-Types has mostly vanished in newer sets - in Standard it jumps to more like 70%.  No Resistance to worry about unless you mess with Unlimited play (and we aren’t) though there are a few anti-Grass-Type cards that don’t seem worth it in general, but perhaps if you really needed to splash something into a deck because Grass-Types are a problem, you’ve got cards like Bouffalant (XY: Primal Clash 119/160) that might actually be worth the effort (unlike a lot of specific anti-Type cards).  Grass-Type support is a mixed bag, mostly because you’ve got the very underwhelming given one major exception: Forest of Giant Plants.  This Stadium allows a Grass-Type Pokémon to be Evolve immediately, even if it just entered play and even if it is the very first turn of the game.  As Parasect is a Stage 1 that could matter and given that I referred to it as an “opener”... yes, yes it will. 

Parasect has 100 HP; besides attacks by less-than-complete set-ups, this is just enough to annoy certain low damage decks or attackers, Seismitoad-EX being a decent example of the latter.  Almost would prefer 10 less as it would make Level Ball an option without majorly affecting the odds of Parasect surviving, but that is a nitpick.  Fire Weakness has gotten pretty dangerous lately, to the point even I finally noticed.  I’m used to Fire-Types unleashing massive attacks that would score a OHKO even without Weakness, but the most recent Fire-Type decks actually have variable damage output and will either save resources or be vulnerable to the less damaging attacks used for their effect, reduced Energy requirement, or both.  Lack of Resistance is typical so we’ll move onto the Retreat Cost of [CC]; this is low enough you’ll often be able to afford paying it but high enough that it greatly behooves you to find a way to lower the cost or bypass manually retreating entirely. 

Parasect has two attacks, “Colorful Spores” and “X-Scissor”.  The former requires [C] and allows you to select three of your Pokémon, then search your deck for and attach to each of them… with the additional catch that each basic Energy card must be a different Type.  The Pokémon Types don’t matter, only the Energy.  For the latter attack you need to provide [GC] to hit for 30 damage, plus you flip a coin and if “heads” do another 30.  So either you hit for 60 or 30, which isn’t abysmal but definitely isn’t good.  This is likely here simply so the card has some offensive capacity.  Still on “heads” X-Scissor hits just hard enough that a Silver Bangle would yield 90 damage, so when attacking into something Grass Weak like Seismitoad-EX you can threaten a OHKO (even if you cannot actually deliver). 

Parasect Evolves from Paras; if you are using Forest of Giant Plants then you may try to immediately Evolve, but if you are stuck as Paras your only option is XY: BREAKthrough 1/162.  It is a Basic, Grass-Type Pokémon with 60 HP, Fire Weakness, no Resistance, Retreat Cost [C], no Ancient Trait, no Ability and a single attack (Blot) that requires [C] to use and does 10 damage while healing 10 damage from itself.  There are no other versions of Paras or Parasect available in either Expanded or Standard play; these mark the return of either Pokémon as both last appeared in HeartGold SoulSilver, which officially released in North America back on February 10th, 2010.  That means it took almost six years for these Pokémon to get another card and we haven’t had a Paras or Parasect card legal for Standard (and once it was added, Expanded) play since September 1st, 2012. 

So should you use this card?  Probably not but it has the exact things going for it that can lead to a surprise use for a card that would normally seem like a bad deal.  As Colorful Spores is an attack and requires Energy, you only net two Energy from using it with the mixed blessing of them needing to be two Basic Energy cards of different Types.  I might not consider it at all save Forest of Giant Plants means a player going second can use Colorful Spores on his or her first turn which is better than having to wait until game Turn 3 or 4 (so a player’s second turn) but not by much, plus to pull off the Turn 2 trick will probably require running primarily or only Forest of Giant Plants… which reduces the usefulness of getting multiple different Basic Energy cards into play.  From there it will also depend on how comfortable you are intentionally giving up a Prize; it can be quite dangerous given the pace of the format but at the same time, you can leave your opponent in a bad way as either they leave Parasect out to accelerate more Energy or they enable cards like Ace Trainer.  I normally would avoid something like Ace Trainer, but when you either can KO one of your own Pokémon or have something quite pressing for your opponent to KO?  That is when it warrants consideration. 

In the end though, “consideration” is likely all Parasect will warrant as well.  Maybe with more pending basic Energy support, maybe with something that has an odd Energy combination and doesn’t already have good Energy acceleration we’ll get some kooky deck where Energy acceleration via attack with a Stage 1 makes sense but probably not.  Except of course in Limited where this is a magnificent pull and must run apart from +39 decks.  Enjoy a decent attacker (X-Scissor is much better here because HP scores are much lower) unless you absolutely cannot afford room for basic Grass Energy… in which case you still run Parasect but for its primary use; accelerating the exact basic Energy cards you need for your often multi-typed Limited deck! 


Standard: 1.75/5 

Expanded: 1.75/5 

Limited: 4.75/5 

Summary: Parasect is closer to being worthwhile than its score indicates.  It is the kind of card you don’t expect to work out because what it does (accelerating Energy via attack, requiring you attach three different kinds of basic Energy) is too slow and kind of restrictive, but then something changes.  A means of speeding things up even more, an attacker is released (or rediscovered) that has what was a clunky Energy cost but after a Colorful Spores or two is now easy enough to handle and suddenly, we’ve got a real deck.  May never happen, but I’d like to be on the lookout for it nonetheless instead of being blindsided as has happened before with similar cards.

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