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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day

Mandibuzz BREAK- XY182: Promo
Date Reviewed: Jan. 23, 2017

Ratings & Reviews Summary
Standard: 2.0     Expanded: 2.13      Limited: Promo

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

Back to the main COTD Page


Contrary to yesterday's BREAK evolution, Mandibuzz BREAK actually does have a Standard Mandibuzz to work with! Hooray! Not that that will last for too long, but we shall see. 

In the meantime, let's take a look at Mandibuzz BREAK's attack, Disaster Wing. It's a mere 1 Energy, but it does a LOT of stuff. First off, she'll sweep across 20 damage to every one of your opponent's Pokemon - EVERY ONE OF THEM! That can be up to 120 damage - 180 with Sky Field in play - on your opponent's Pokemon for a single Energy! Not too shabby, but it's not over there! While the damage itself can't hit Weakness or Resistance, it does discard all the Tools your opponent's Pokemon have! What a fantastic sweeping motion! 

A lot of the Expanded versions of Mandibuzz will appreciate the increase in HP as well as Diaster Wing's sweeping strike. Mandibuzz (BW) can combo off of it with Blindside, hitting any Pokemon with damage on it for 50 damage for a single Energy, while Mandibuzz (EMP) and Mandibuzz (BCR) wouldn't mind the beneficially better attack to work around with their own attacks. The one Standard legal print, Mandibuzz (FCO), will benefit from this as much as the Emerging Powers/Boundaries Crossed versions, but none of them can really take advantage of Disaster Wing's power the way the Black & White Base Set can.

It's hard to judge how far Mandibuzz BREAK can get, but considering her other evolutions aren't too powerful on their own, I don't see her being a crazy strong powerhouse. Disaster Wing should definitely get looked at for the widespread damage and the Tool scrapping capabilities, but it's understandable if the investment of what is a Stage 2 in essence is too much for that. 


Standard: 2/5 (she's a great ally with that Disaster Wing on her side) 

Expanded: 2.5/5 (but her counterparts are a bit lacking overall) 

Limited: N/A (if only being a promo worked in one's favor) 

Arora Notealus: It's definitely a great card on its own, but Mandibuzz BREAK suffers from its other forms at the moment, and there's not much change coming in the future from the look of things. The Fates Collide version of Mandibuzz isn't too great, but maybe there will be some people running BREAK with it, and I'd expect the original BW version to get some good press in Expanded. Not game-breaking good, but good enough. 

Next Time: The classic star of Pokemon gets the EX treatment!


Our second card this week is Mandibuzz BREAK (XY: Black Star Promos XY182), our second promo and BREAK Evolution this week.  Being a BREAK Evolution means only generic Evolution support applies; even though Mandibuzz BREAK Evolves from a Stage 1, she won’t count as a Stage 2.  Thanks to a few releases late in the XY-era, now both generic Evolution counters and BREAK Evolution counters apply to Mandibuzz BREAK.  She’s a Darkness Type, which means Mandibuzz BREAK enjoys some solid support, however, the best of this comes in the form of other potent Darkness Type Pokémon that may crowd her out of a deck instead of supporting her.  Pokémon and/or Energy Type specific Darkness support isn’t as thrilling as it once was, with the best bit (Dark Patch) being Expanded only.  There are anti-Darkness Type effects but none have proven worth the effort of running.  Darkness Resistances is found on all Fairy Types (excluding BREAK Evolutions having no Resistance of their own); this isn’t as bad as it sounds as often the -20 damage from Resistance won’t matter, but there are indeed some Fairy focused decks out there that will make it matter.  Darkness Weakness is only found on certain Psychic Types, namely those that represent Ghost Types.  It isn’t the least useful Weakness to exploit, but I’m not seeing a lot of it on the competitive Standard decks at the moment (I believe it still has a significant presence in Expanded play, however). 

Mandibuzz BREAK has 140 HP, enough that surviving an attack is more likely than not.  It isn’t by a huge margin, though, so be cautious; as a pseudo-Stage 2, you probably cannot afford Mandibuzz BREAK going down in a single hit.  This Pokémon gets her Weakness, Resistance, and Retreat Cost from whichever Mandibuzz you BREAK Evolve from so we’ll move onto her attack, “Wings of Disaster”.  For [C] this imposing sounding attack does just 20 damage to each of your opponent’s Pokémon (sans Weakness or Resistance) and discards all Pokémon Tools attached to each of them.  I would rather it placed two damage counters instead as there are fewer ways to block damage counter placements, and since even the damage against the Active doesn’t apply Weakness or Resistance, the only benefit of doing damage is you could use something like Muscle Band to hit a tiny bit harder.  Against just the Active.  I am torn when it comes to evaluating this attack; this is the raw, sweeping Tool discarding effect many have been clamoring for as Wings of Disaster destroys so many of the Tool related combos that have no (effective) Standard counter.  While I’ve gone on the record stating cards like Startling Megaphone and even Tool Scrapper are too potent, that is because those are Items with no cost to play besides actually using said card.  Discarding Bursting Balloon, Exp. Share, Fighting Fury Belt, Float Stone, Spirit Link cards, etc. all at once gives her a use against most decks, with that that rely heavily on such cards or Garbodor (XY: BREAKpoint 57/122). 

So what about the rest of the Evolutionary line?  For Vullaby we have Black & White 72/114, BW: Emerging Powers 68/98, BW: Dark Explorers 73/108, BW: Boundaries Crossed 92/149, and XY: Fates Collide 57/124, while Mandibuzz has Black & White 73/114, BW: Emerging Powers 69/98, BW: Boundaries Crossed 93/149, and XY: Fates Collide 58/124.  All are Darkness Type Pokémon with Lightning Weakness, Fighting Resistance, Retreat Cost [C], no Ability, and no Ancient Trait.  That means Mandibuzz BREAK cannot have an Ability either, but she will share the same oft exploited Weakness of Yveltal-EX, enjoy -20 Fighting Resistance, and easy to pay Retreat Cost.  All Vullaby are Basic Pokémon with one or two attacks.  Black & White 72/114 has 60 HP and for [D] may use “Surprise Attack” to do 20 damage, but it requires a coin flip and does nothing on a “tails”.  BW: Emerging Powers 68/98 has 50 HP and can use “Rear Guard” for [D] to soak 30 damage from attacks during your opponent’s next turn, or for [DC] can use “Gust” to do 20 damage.  BW: Dark Explorers 73/108 is another with 60 HP and a single attack; “Whirlwind” costs [D] and does 10 damage before forcing your opponent to change out his or her Active.  BW: Boundaries Crossed 92/149 brings back 50 HP and two attacks.  Even the first attack is a repeat as its Gust again, though for [D] and doing only 10 damage this time.  The second attack is “Razor Wing” for [DC], doing 20 damage.  XY: Fates Collide 57/124 is the only version with 60 HP and two attacks; the first is “Leer” for [C], the second is “Cutting Wind” for [DCC].  Leer lets you flip a coin, and if “heads” it Paralyzes the opponent’s Active; Cutting Wind simply does 40 damage.  None of these are great, but XY: Fates Collide 57/124 looks to be the best since she has the (slightly) larger HP and a chance of Paralyzing the opponent’s Active… which might keep her alive long enough to Evolve.  She is the only Standard legal option, anyway. 

All Mandibuzz are Stage 1 with two attacks, and all but XY: Fates Collide 58/124 have 90 HP (our exception has 110).  90 HP is a probable OHKO though it is easier to search out thanks to Level Ball; 110 is slightly more durable but the +20 HP is probably on par with being Level Ball compliant as it doesn’t make XY: Fates Collide 58/124 that much more durable.  At least this makes the 140 HP of Mandibuzz BREAK a good bonus; 30 more than XY: Fates Collide 58/124 and 50 more than the others!  Black & White 73/114 can use “Blindside” to do 50 damage to one of your opponent’s Pokémon that already has damage counters on it, and for just [D].  For [DCC] she can use “Punishment” to do 40 damage that gets a +60 damage bonus against Stage 2 Pokémon.  No, Stage 2 Pokémon weren’t dominant at that time, though they were not uncommon as Bench-sitters.  Blindside was decent for its day, but now I’m not sure if it is adequate, even though spreading damage counts is relatively easy in the proper deck.  We thought this Mandibuzz was at least on the happy side of average when we first reviewed her here, with some of us expecting quite a bit out of her.  I don’t recall that every happening, and in our defense, we were trying to anticipate how she would play in a then still pending format.  We were still wrong, though.

BW: Emerging Powers 69/98 can use “Bone Rush” for [D], flipping a coin until you get “tails” to do 30 damage per “heads”, or “Dark Pulse” for [CC] to do 20 damage plus 10 for each [D] Energy you have in play.  Yes, the same attack that has made Darkrai-EX (XY: BREAKpoint 74/122, 188/122) such a star.  This Mandibuzz wasn’t even the attack’s first appearance; looks like that honor goes to the original Weavile (Diamond & Pearl 40/130), a card from nearly 10 years ago (over 10 in Japan).  Dark Pulse has evolved over the years; the original on Weavile required [DDD] and just did 10 damage times the amount of [D] Energy you had in play.  Darkrai-EX does 20 plus 20 per Energy for [CC].  While Mandibuzz is only worth a single Prize when KO’d, Darkrai-EX hits almost twice as hard for the same amount of Energy and (especially with Fighting Fury Belt) is usually able to survive a hit to attack again.  This Mandibuzz isn’t worth it right now, and she wasn’t back then, either.  BW: Boundaries Crossed 93/149 didn’t even get a review back when it released.  For [DC] it can use Gust to do 30 damage (at least it is stronger than the version on Vullaby), and for [DCCC] “Dual Cut” allows you to flip two coins to do 80 damage per “heads”.  Even if BW: Boundaries Crossed hadn’t been the final set of 2012, eating of two weeks that would probably have been filled with more BW: Boundaries Crossed reviews, this Mandibuzz screams “Filler!”. 

That just leaves XY: Fates Collide 58/124, which we actually did take a look at this past summer.  My review for it may still be missing; I sent it in a day late and it looks like it was lost in the shuffle.  We’ll see if we can get that up now, for what it is worth.  Back to this Mandibuzz: for [C] she can use “Bone Drop” to hit an opponent’s Pokémon for 60 damage if the target has an Ability.  Not bad if your opponent has something small with an Ability on his or her Bench, but it can’t hit anything at all your opponent’s Pokémon lack an Ability.  Most of what it can OHKO aren’t likely to remain in play long or else are “glass cannons” likely to be Active (so anything can do the job).  With a lot of help Bone Drop could end up scoring a OHKO against a Benched Shaymin-EX (XY: Roaring Skies 77/108, 106/108).  Oh, and for [DCC] her version of Cutting Wind does 80 damage.  This would be fine if the rest of the card was better (stats or a great Ability), but is mediocre without such things. Still, she’s the only Standard legal Mandibuzz, better than being stuck with BW: Boundaries Crossed 93/149 but on par with the other two.  That means this is where our review seems to grind to a halt; Wings of Destruction isn’t good enough to justify such a heavy investment.  There are a few decks that would desperately love to include the attack, but they just don’t have the space for this many cards for a single instance of the attack.  Mandibuzz BREAK has as good or better options for Mandibuzz in Expanded play, but this is overshadowed by its Tool discarding effect being unneeded thanks to Startling Megaphone.  This card is a promo so once again, it won’t work for Limited play, but it might have been pretty good there; its stats and attack are just better the more limited your opponent’s options. 


Standard: 2/5 

Expanded: 1.75/5 

Limited: (N/A) 

Summary: Again we get a BREAK Evolution with something we actually want, but by virtue of being a BREAK Evolution (or at least one with really bad previous Stages), Mandibuzz BREAK won’t be able to deliver the mass tool removal so many Ability heavy decks crave.

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