The state of pokemon through the ages…
Jonathan Schweppe

         “The State of Pokemon Sucks.” ­ hundreds of players worldwide.

Let me correct this. Yes, the State of Pokemon in Standard isn’t perfect, but at this point, it’s the best its been since well, ever! There is so much variety now. I mean, you will obviously see slowkings, which are now beatable. Sneasel is still a staple in every deck, and Dark Vile is still hanging. But 1 card has ended this trial of sadness. Igglybuff! Now, it may be possible to go back to original decks! And here, I am going to review the state of pokemon after each set, and show all you that it is the best its ever been!

Base. It first came out here. The base set introduced an entire game, one that would begin to hook millions. From here, the famous (or should I say infamous) haymaker was born. A 2-pokemon tag-team, with hitmonchan and electabuzz started it. Hitmonchan was very quick. Electabuzz was too. And this combo along with another card named Farfetch’d began a deck. Normally, this deck consisted of these pokemon along with a couple other fast ones, like chansey. And frankly, it’s ALL you saw. Raindance existed here, and was sort of popular, but not enough water existed for it to be completely made into an archetype. Mainly it consisted of Blastoise, Gyarados, and Dewgong. But, however, it was usually beat by haymaker, because it wasn’t fast enough. The tournament scene, which I don’t even know if it was around, would’ve been dull. And it was dull for a few sets to come.

Jungle. This set made it go from dull, to a more fun casual game, but it still was dull. Now all you saw was wigglytuff, with electabuzz and hitmonchan! Also, a new card was instituted. Its name was scyther! =D This card, which has been used very popularly ever since neo genesis came out, is one of the coolest cards ever made. Jungle also brought clefable, which was good against the occasional charizard deck, and even mr. Mime, which single handedly stopped the Raindance archetype for about 4 months!

Fossil. The tournament scene still consists of wigglys, haymakers, and raindances. Fossil gave us aerodactyl, which stopped evolution, but other than that, it wasn’t that good. It did help Raindance however. Raindance gained Articuno, which is in EVERY water deck today, and Lapras, which could get around mr. Mime. Fossil was cool to look at, but really, this set was not that helpful.

(In between time: Beedrill300 held a base-fossil tournament on pojo’s league the other night. In this tournament, I played 3 games. The deck I was playing? Wiggly with hitmonchan, electabuzz, and scyther. The decks I played? Wiggly with hitmonchan, electabuzz, and scyther. THAT was a boring tournament.)

Team Rocket. This set was the most hyped up of all the sets!!!!!!! Wizards held its first contest on its online site at this time. Pojo’s pokemon league was born. A bunch of stuff happened at this time, but nothing happened with the cards! Team rocket was the worst of all the sets, only helping grass by giving it dark muk and dark vileplume. STILL… This was the worst set yet! =/

Gym Heroes: Ahh… A kewl set right here. Gym heroes actually helped the current tournament with changing exactly alike decks, to slightly different decks with the same idea. The tournament scene is starting to get stale, and players cant wait for the supposed Neo set coming out later. Rocket’s scyther was nice. And a few neat cards came out as well. Misty’s poliwhirl was one of them.

Gym Challenge: Well, this set is my favorite. I like to play RaNd0m decks now, that consist of some of these pokemon. I’ve played misty decks, blaine decks, and even a Giovanni deck! =/ But this set still didn’t help the standard tournament scene. At this point in time, wizards held the ECSTS which had the first format for pokemon. Prop 15… where you could only have 15 trainers. Did it help? HECK NO. Only real card taken out of here for the standard environment was Rocket’s Zapdos. Its still used today.
Wigglytuff/Rocket’s Zapdos was ALL you saw at this time.

Neo Genesis: This set changed the game. I mean it took wigglytuff, and threw it. It took bill, and threw it. It took every haymaker card, and threw it! New decks were born. Sneasel, one of the most popular cards, is in EVERY deck today. Murkrow invented the lock deck, one using the powers of Dark Vileplume or Slowking to lock your opponent. Slowking also hurt usage of trainers. But once all the dust cleared, the only decks viable were slowking/sneasels. The environment was hurt, once again. However, one card here that was interesting was cleffa. This card completely killed trap decks, (originating around Gym Heroes) by making you draw 7 cards! An entire new hand, for an attack! =D

And finally: Neo Discovery. This set is underrated. Its changed the game the most of any set. Igglybuff, a card that disables pokemon powers, just turned slowking into lunchmeat. Unown N made colorless not seem yummy anymore. Unown D turned murkrow into useless, and made a card named tyranitar have a yummy combo! This set has created many new archetypes, and with the huge card pool, now most decks ARE different. Thank you wizards, for making this great step. Now, the game has slightly been fixed. Lets hope it isn’t ruined again…

Now, to all of you who think that the game of pokemon is dead. (MrMonkey33… =/) Is it really that bad? Is the whole standard environment dead? I really don’t think so.

Jonathan Schweppe