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Yu Yu Hakusho
Pojo's Pokémon Card of the Day
Top 15 Sun & Moon:
#4 - Choice Band
- S&M: Guardians Rising
May 30, 2017
& Reviews Summary
Ratings are based
on a 1 to 5 scale.
1 being horrible.
3 ... average. 5 is awesome.
Back to the main COTD
Remember how dominant Muscle Band
was when it first came out? A card that just added a
flat 20 damage to every attack? And you could put it on
anyone? It's arguably one of, if not the best Tool cards
Choice Band is similar in its
damage-boosting powers, putting it in the iterations of
damage-boosting Items like Muscle Band and Fighting Fury
Belt. The good news is that this boost goes up to 30
damage, but the catch is that it only affects
Pokemon-GX...or EX? Oooooh, that's a great bit of text
Choice Band is a great damage
booster in many decks and can hit the Pokemon with the
highest HP even harder, tilting things in its favor
more! You can use it with Turtonator-GX's Shell Trap to
threaten for 50 damage and protect yourself with another
80 if they attack, or you can boost up Lycanroc-GX or
Sylveon-GX's vanilla 3-for-110 moves so they hit for
140, threatening the 2HKO on most GX/EX save for the
Stage 2 GX and Wailord-EX. Even Trevenant can
effectively count another "Trainer" in its Poltergeist
attack, making OHKO ranges much easier to manage!
Of course, Choice Band won't work
against everything - like the aforementioned Trevenant
from this set, or the infamous BREAK Evolutions that
came out in previous sets. It also doesn't affect
smaller Pokemon like Volcanion (STS) or Garbodor (BKT),
so its primary use is boosting against the EX/GX threats
of the format. It's a powerful card, but against
non-EX/GX, it's practically a non-issue, and in Expanded
that may mean it's a shifting card that works to compete
against the default Muscle Band for attention.
It may not appear in as many decks
generally if GX aren't going to be a defining issue in
Standard, but whenever EX/GX are present, you can bet
Choice Band will be there to sort things out and even
the playing field!
Standard: 4.5/5 (it's the primary
means of damage-dealing against a lot of big Pokemon)
Expanded: 4/5 (it does fall short
of Muscle Band's utility though)
Limited: 4/5 (and it only works
against certain Pokemon, so be wary against others)
Arora Notealus: Choice Band will
probably appear in many decks to combat ongoing GX
Pokemon, and it's a great Tool to have in that aspect.
That being said, it shouldn't be considered a must-run -
if anything, it's dependent on what's competitive at the
time, so again, keep an eye on the ever-shifting
metagame so you know what you're dealing with and can
figure if you need Choice Band or another card - it's
your choice, after all!
Next Time: Speaking of Garbodor...
(Guardians Rising, 121/145) originates in the new
Guardians Rising expansion set.
It allows the Pokemon attached to it to do an
additional thirty damage
an EX or GX Pokemon.
Finally, a little bit of help against GX Pokemon
who have had absolutely nothing to reign them in for the
first three months of their existence.
Band’s effectiveness has been tempered by the
Field Blower (Guardians Rising, 125/145),
just four cards after it in the same expansion set.
Blower will remove
from the Pokemon and cast it down into the discard pile.
Therefore, if you choose to play
you should assume that it will only get one use out of
it before your opponent knocks it off you.
So should you even make room in your deck to play
Several factors affect that decision:
Since Guardians Rising came out, decks I have
faced have had at least one EX or GX Pokemon in 247 out
of 310 matches.
That means that in 80% of the matches I play, I
face a deck that has at least one EX or GX Pokemon.
80% is such a significant number that that
statistic alone makes it difficult to justify NOT
Another factor depends on the amount of damage your
primary attacker does on its main attack.
For instance, if your main attack does 100 or
maybe 110 damage, you will probably want to include
in order to avoid having to three shot Pokemon with 210
HP or more.
However, if your primary attacker does 120, 130, or 140
damage, you might not want to include
as it falls in this narrow gap where you’re not doing
enough damage to one shot basic EX and GX Pokemon with
but you do enough to two shot the very high (240 or 250
HP) Stage 2 Pokemon GXs without
And then if you’re doing 150 or 160 damage or
more, you’ll probably want to include it again because
now you’re in the territory where you can one shot basic
EX’s and GX’s.
How scared of
Garbodor (Guardians Rising, 51/145) are you?
I lovingly refer to
you are already running a ton of items, meh, what’s a
Really, if you have a Pokemon with, say, 130 HP,
who cares if Garb
does 130 or 230 or 330 damage?
Honestly, if I’m running a single prize Pokemon
deck, I just use my items normally.
Chances are, if your running a single prize
Pokemon deck, then you know your active’s probably going
to get KO’d frequently, and you’ve accounted for that in
If you’re running a two prize Pokemon deck, you
probably have more HP (maybe even up to 250 HP), so you
know you can use ten or maybe even twelve items and
isn’t one shotting you.
Some decks also can get by with less item cards,
so those might be the ones to be more inclined to
How many Field
Blowers do you think your opponent is running?
When I first learned of
my second reaction (shortly after singing the
from Handel’s Messiah) was: it’s got to be a four
of in every deck!
I lost a bet on that, though, and it seems that
most players are running only one or two copies.
I try to run four
in all of my decks, but it just doesn’t always happen.
In every deck that doesn’t have four, though, I
always wish I had more.
However, I have little doubt that you can out
tool your opponent, though, since they’re probably only
running two, and, because they’re carrying a limited
number of Field
Blowers, they’re not always going to get it when
they need it.
When I run four, I don’t always get it when I
need it, and sometimes I have to
Sycamore (Steam Siege, 114/114) or
Ultra Ball (Sun
& Moon, 135/149) it away early.
In short, chances are your opponent won’t be able
to knock off all of your
Standard: 4 out of 5
can definitely help the right deck.
Thirty extra damage might push you into OHKO or
two shot range, even if you do only get to use it once.
There are good reasons not to use it, though, and
it doesn’t do anything for non-EX or non-GX Pokemon, and
that’s why I only gave it a four out of five.
Still, a card that’s going to help you win the
game 80% of the time is a very valuable card and should
be included as a multiple in most decks.
Just missing the Top 3 of our countdown is our fourth
place finisher, Choice Band (SM: Guardians
Rising 121/145). This is a new Pokémon Tool,
making it fairly easy to play; just have a Pokémon with
an open Tool slot. Well, you do have to worry
about Item lock like Vileplume (XY: Ancient
Origins 3/98) or feeding the damage output of
Garbodor (SM: Guardians Rising 51/145).
So, why risk such counters? Choice Band causes
the attacks of the Pokémon to which it is attached to do
30 extra damage when used against Pokémon-EX and
Pokémon-GX. This happens before
Weakness/Resistance are applied, so the bonus is
effectively doubled against Weakness and more than
cancels out Resistance. The attack also needs to
do damage in the first place; it won’t help a
non-damaging attack at all. This card is basically
the powered-up update of Silver Bangle, a card
that granted +30 damage when the Pokémon to which it is
attached do an extra 30 damage when attacking
Pokémon-EX. The big difference? While
Silver Bangle didn’t cover the previous Pokémon
gimmick, it released long after they had left Standard
play it didn’t matter. No, the big difference is
that Silver Bangle also stated that its
damage-boosting effect didn’t work if it was attached to
WORKS FOR EVERYTHING!
Well, like I said, not something that can’t do damage
in the first place, and there might be some other
exceptions I can’t remember, but all those Pokémon-EX
and Pokémon-GX attacks that were falling short against
fellow Pokémon-EX and/or Pokémon-GX? We have a way
to close the gap! It was already going to be an
impressive card before that, especially in Standard
where we lack Muscle Band, but now? The
only decks that won’t use this are ones that need
the Tool slot for something else or that hit damage
numbers unlikely to benefit from +30. Besides some
of the attacks that hit crazy hard already, remember
that increases in damage usually only matter if it
alters how quickly you score a KO. If you attacker
is going to score a 2HKO with or without Choice Band,
it isn’t really helping you. Basic Pokémon may
also prefer Fighting Fury Belt, as it still
grants +10 damage but also +40 HP to the Pokémon
equipped with it. In Expanded play, Muscle Band
is still an option, so you can do +20 against
everything instead of +30 against the targets you’ll
most likely need to hit harder. Again, look at the
numbers you’re hitting; sometimes Muscle Band
will be better, but sometimes Choice Band will be
better. Expect this to show up, in multiples, in
most Standard and Expanded decks. Count
yourself lucky if you pull it at a Limited Format event.
Hitting harder is usually a great thing, and Choice
Band is no exception. It can be attached to
anything and decreases or even exceeds the HP bonus
enjoyed by some Pokémon-EX/Pokémon-GX over their regular
Aqua Patch but missed tying
3rd place pick eight voting points. I am glad it
won the tie with Aqua Patch, which was determined
by dice off. I rolled a d6 for each card. Aqua
Patch got a “4”, but Choice Band got a “6”.
For my personal Top 10, Choice Band ranked 3rd,
but with what we’ve seen since I created that list I can
accept a 4th place finish. The final thought I want to
leave you with is that if Choice Band had
released as part of Sun & Moon, it probably would
have ranked higher, maybe even taken 1st place.