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Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day


- Sun & Moon

Date Reviewed:
May 2, 2017

Ratings & Reviews Summary

Standard: 1.88
Expanded: 1.75
Limited: 3.88

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

Back to the main COTD Page


...it's Cheren again. Or Tierno. But now it's Hau. 

The effect's the same, there are better draw cards right about now, but maybe there's hope for Hau unlike Cheren and Tierno. While we don't know too much of the draw power going into the Sun&Moon era, there hasn't been a big draw card like Sycamore or Colress in a long time, so it might be an indication that the designers are looking to slow the pace of the game down again. That could be hinted alongside the evolutionary GX that are in the game, and it might give Hau a chance to shine in some decks. 

Among the newer draw cards, though, Hau doesn't have that first turn utility that Lillie has - much less the ability to draw up to 6 cards - and while he can nab another card more than Professor Kakui, he doesn't add on the extra 20 damage the Professor does. So in that case, Hau might be just as out of luck as his regional counterparts. 

Such is the fate of a simplistic draw-3. 


Standard: 2/5 (Hau's still a good card, but he just doesn't provide the same oomph as some others) 

Expanded: 1.5/5 (and his simplicity, while it can be a plus, is also a big minus to him as well) 

Limited: 4/5 (but in Limited environments, you can never really turn down draw power) 

Arora Notealus: That all being said, I did find Hau to be a charming part of Sun and Moon. Sure, he was just that happy-go-lucky sidekick like how Bianca was, but he still had his own stake in the trials - that being he wanted to be a Kahuna like his old man. He also gets access to Alolan Raichu, which is actually a lot tougher during the course of the game than I would've imagined. 

Next Time: Sniffing out trouble wherever it may be!


Hau (Sun & Moon, 120/149) comes from the Sun & Moon base expansion set, and it replicates the same function as a couple of cards before it (Tierno (Breakpoint, 112/122) and Cheren (Boundaries Crossed, 148/149).  Today, and through the end of August, most of us quickly skip by Hau in favor of the superior draw support cards available.  However, we may be entering an era where options for draw support become much more limited. 

So I’m going to warn you right now: if you don’t want to read about Rotationageddon, skip to Aroramage’s or Otaku’s reviews. 

Before I even say IF, let me first lay out that I DO NOT think that Rotationageddon will occur.  If you don’t know what I mean by Rotationageddon, there is a conspiracy theory (if you want to call it that) that the rotation at the end of August / beginning of September will leave us with only Sun & Moon, Guardians Rising, and Burning Shadows. 

If your heart just stopped beating, if I made your jaw hit the floor, if you maybe even vomited a little bit, take a deep breath and let me give you some reassurance.  Otaku recently pointed out in a discussion that a rotation including Sun & Moon on would be the largest rotation ever.  The most number of sets that have been rotated at one time was seven, and that has happened only once.  Leaving us with only Sun & Moon on would rotate out a whopping ten sets.  It’s difficult to imagine that we would be left with only three sets, and that Pokemon would rotate out so much of the current meta. 

Having said that, circumstantial evidence exists that leads us to wonder.  First, the clear movement away from EX Pokemon has to make one contemplate the delineation between Sun & Moon and XY.  The design of cards (and not just that they moved the retreat cost from one side of the card to the other) in XY and Sun & Moon differ significantly, and some people point to this as a major reason why Pokemon might completely wipe away everything before Sun & Moon.  Because of such a contrast in the design of the game between the two eras, some believe that this signals a major change in what Pokemon wants to include in the Standard format. 

Pokemon has recently released a number of Mega Evolution Pokemon as promo cards.  Since Sun & Moon, neither expansion set has included an EX, Mega, or Break Pokemon.  Although we have seen some Mega Pokemon introduced outside of the expansion sets, they have not included the corresponding Basic Pokemon these Megas evolve from.  Therefore, while the Megas would be Standard legal, they would be unplayable because the Basic form would not be available in Standard play.  This release of Megas detached from their basics has led people to speculate that everything from the EX era will be rotated.  The exclusion of the basic forms of these Mega evolution Pokemon prompts people to wonder if we won’t soon be in a GX exclusive format. 

Finally, the cards Pokemon has chosen to reprint in Sun & Moon and Guardians Rising indicate that a large rotation could be possible.  Double Colorless Energy (Evolutions, 90/108), Switch (Evolutions, 88/108), and Pokemon Catcher (Breakpoint, 105/122) are all cards that would remain in the Standard format if the rotation included the typical (and expected) number of four sets.  Why would they have issued reprints of these cards when they would still be around in a four set rotation?  Furthermore, Pokemon has not reprinted important and popular meta defining draw cards such as Professor Sycamore (Steam Siege, 114/114), N (Fates Collide, 105/124), and VS Seeker (Roaring Skies, 110/108).  By NOT reprinting these cards, Pokemon is sending a message that they significantly want to change the nature of the game… which only fuels the speculation that a massive rotation is imminently on the horizon.  If Pokemon wants to substantially change the game, they’re not going to leave EXs (holdovers from the previous era) and GXs intermixed in a Standard format, especially since Expanded format tournaments are becoming almost as common as Standard ones. 

So… to bring this review back to Hau, a Sun & Moon on format right now only includes a handful of draw support cards: Hala (Guardians Rising, 143/145), Lillie (Sun & Moon, 147/149), Ilima (Sun & Moon, 146/149), and Professor Kukui (Sun & Moon, 148/149) don’t leave us with a lot of choices.  Certainly, none of these is even close to Sycamore.  I had previously made a good argument for Ilima if you had Octillery (Breakthrough, 33/162) set up… but if Octillery is rotated out, Ilima is not as good as N.  Hala might be good in GX decks in which you’ll probably play your GX attack early.  Lillie will be far less playable in Grass decks.  Considering all of these choices, Hau might become a four of in some – maybe even many – decks. 


Standard: 1.5 out of 5


While Hau might see more usage post-rotation, right now it simply won’t help you win as much as Professor Sycamore and the other draw support cards that we currently have in the meta. 


How are you doing? 


We’re reviewing Hau (Sun & Moon 120/149); as it is a name I’ve never heard before, I have no idea if I was sort of making a pun or not.  What I do know is that Hau joins the growing list of Supporter cards that let you draw three cards, with no additional cost or effect.  Besides him, we have Cheren and Tierno.  It is so odd to me as a long time player; not just seeing three Supporters only different in name, but that these three have barely - if ever - been competitive when for years we had Supporters that drew three cards but came with a drawback and were good (if not great!) for competitive play.  Something like TV Reporter (“Draw 3 cards.  Then discard any 1 card from your hand.”) was vital to many (if not most) decks back in the day, and not just those that could combo off of the discard cost.  The game is just too fast and resource intensive to get by drawing three cards from your Supporter usage for the turn… at least most of the time this is the case.  If there is some quirky deck build that makes Hau and company awesome, I haven’t seen it. 

That doesn’t mean Hau is useless, though.  Hau demonstrates that the base value of a Supporter is still drawing three cards, which is useful for estimating the quality of other effects.  If you want to get really in depth, this provides a nice data point for the math behind the game; you try to find cards that are nearly identical except for one difference and that helps you deduce the value of that difference.  A lot more universal, at least for a time, is allowing new players to focus on the fundamentals of Pokémon TCG without having to make the kind of judgment calls required for competitive Supporters like N or Professor Sycamore.  I’ve never tested it myself, but I have known others to try at least a clutch Cheren/Hau/Tierno, especially when Battle Compressor and VS Seeker are both legal because there are times when you need to draw three cards; no more and no less.  I haven’t seen any competitive decks that needed Hau (or friends) for it, so a theoretical advantage to these Supporters is that certain combos are going to need you to draw while not messing with your deck order or hand contents.  Where Hau shines is in the Limited Format (where you build your deck based on pulls from sealed product), as well as the PTCGO only Theme Format (where each player uses a preconstructed Theme Deck).  Unsurprisingly, decks are usually lacking in draw power and this makes any draw better, and hassle-free draw a little bit better as well. 


Standard: 2/5 

Expanded: 2/5 

Limited: 3.75/5 

Theme: 3.75/5 


Part of me wishes Hau drew another card or two; that might be enough to have made it worthwhile.  The reason another part of me is glad it doesn’t is because that means there is just the slightest chance that the pacing of the game will slow down in the future after cards like Shaymin-EX (XY: Roaring Skies 77/108, 106/108) and Professor Sycamore rotate from Standard play… but probably not.  It looks more like we’ll still have some potent draw power, just structured a bit differently than what we’ve become accustomed to over the last few years.  Hau will have to settle for being a solid learning card for new players and a suboptimal but not the worst play for the rest of us.

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