To Reprint Or Not To Reprint?

I read Pokemaster 1110’s last article (entitled A Gamer’s Grief) with interest. Being pretty much of an online Pokemon player, rather than a card-buyer, I won’t be affected (and wasn’t affected) by the Wizard’s Modified set rotation much. However, I perfectly see his point in his article, and I must admit that I never thought about it.

Whether the annual Modified Format modification (pun intended) is a good thing or not, it’s not up to me to decide. Personally, I like it when September comes and each Pokemon player has to restart from scratch, to think about what can be good in the new Modified Format.

I agree with Pokemaster 1110 that WotC will probably rotate out all the cards from Neo Block. I believe that they will also ban more of the American Promo cards (maybe from #21-#40). Whatever they rotate out, I’m pretty sure that there will be cards that I wouldn’t like to be banned. I’m also equally sure that there will be cards that I’d be glad to see them banned.

Well, I decided to make a Top 5 classification. Actually, two Top 5 classifications. A Top 5 for cards I’d love to see reprinted, and another Top 5 for the cards I’d really hate to see reprinted. Note that both classifications are not just for my own personal satisfaction, but rather for what, I think, will be the best for Pokemon.

Note: I’m assuming that WotC is rotating out all cards from Neo Block here. However, it turns out that the "nice" and "ugly" cards are all from Neo Genesis and Neo Discovery, bar one.

Top 5 "DO REPRINT!" cards

5. Neo Discovery Eevee

You’re probably surprised with this choice for my 5th placed card that I’d love to have in Modified, but I really like this card. Its Pokemon Power is really good. Getting out your Eeveelution is a breeze. You can even evolve it first turn, using its power. A nice card, which, unfortunately, we’ll soon kiss goodbye, since WotC won't ever consider reprinting an EEVEE, for sure.

4. Recycle Energy

I know it’s a promo, but if they’ll ban American promos, this card will also cease to exist in Modified. A shame, because it’s a really nice Energy card that just refuses to go to the discard pile. It's quite useful in Modified in many situations. It's good with Expedition Blastoise. It's good with Pokemon Center (unless it will be banned too). It's good just for retreating purposes. I'll miss it if they don't reprint it.

3. Gold Berry

Well, if this card leaves Modified, then we won’t have any adequate healing card for sure. Healing Berry simply isn’t as good, and we’re left with the reprinted Potion and Moo-Moo Milk, both of which aren’t very good. Maybe Pokemon Center, but again, it's a Promo...

2. Double Gust

I hope WotC do something about this and reprint this card somehow. Tell me how on Earth are we going to gust if we don’t have this card? Pokemon Reversal? Aquapolis Victreebel? "Flip a coin…" I surely DON'T want to flip a coin to be able to gust out a Pokemon.


I know that Modified’s search cards aren’t few, but we still need this bugger. Getting a new 7-card hand whenever you like is simply too good to miss. I’m pretty sure this card is going to be a Best-Of promo. I hate its Baby Rule though... but I'll get into that pretty soon.

And now for the "get out of Modified!" Top 5.

Top 5 "DON’T REPRINT!" cards:

5. Baby Pokemon

Maybe I’m insane, but yes, I’d LOVE to see all (good) Babies disappear from Modified. But, at the same time, leave Cleffa in PLEASE. Am I sick or what? The Baby Rule gives the game too many flips, which I really hate. The rotating out of Neo Block means that the good Babies are out, meaning less coin flips, and more enjoyable games. Yes, I do believe that less flips means a more enjoyable game. If Cleffa is reprinted, then it's good. If it's not, then it's still good. We got rid of the Baby Rule.

4. Neo Revelation Entei (with Howl Pokemon Power)

I believe that any card that lets you attach more than one Energy card per turn gives you a huge advantage. This explains why all cards that let you do this are all Evolved Pokemon. Aquapolis Bellossom, Expedition Venusaur, Expedition Typhlosion, Aquapolis Electrode… all are evolved Pokemon. All of them… except Howl Entei. This card, in my opinion, gives an unfair advantage to Fire decks by allowing them to setup much faster than normal. When I see a Slugma with 3 Fire Energies as I am starting my VERY FIRST turn, I just roll my eyes in disgust.

3. Steelix

I absolutely hate this card. Only Fire Pokemon and Removal decks (which, with the absence of Kingdra, will take a nosedive) can beat Steelix consistently. Which is also what we’re saying right now about Aquapolis Scizor. (OK, there's Light Dragonite, but if they're removing Neo Block, it's rotating out too.) To make matters worse, Steelix is usually paired alongside Water Pokemon. Is that fair? I don’t think so.

2. Focus Band

Focus Band is a really annoying card. You’re tied 1-1 on prizes. You gust out a Pokemon with Focus Band attached. You know you can KO it, but… that Focus Band gives the Defending Pokemon a 50% chance of surviving. I don’t find that thing fair AT ALL. Especially if that Pokemon survives and it KO’s your Active Pokemon next turn for game after flipping tails for YOUR Focus Band. That’s a terribly sick feeling.


Yes, Tyrogue. I know I've already mentioned Babies, but I think Tyrogue deserves a special mention. Never mind the first turn Baby FTKO... it will disappear, together with the Babies themselves. The thing that sickens me with Tyrogue is that it’s hosing all cards that are weak to Fighting. You can't deny that. That’s surely unfair. Why on Earth can’t I play Ampharos, Expedition Tyranitar, Aquapolis Umbreon, and other viable cards without fearing it? My goodness, even the almightly Electabuzz falls prey to it. That shows just how much Tyrogue is powerful against all cards weak to fighting. WotC, I beg you, DON'T REPRINT TYROGUE, for the good of Pokemon.

Reprinted Cards… Present and Future

I’m not too worried about these cards disappearing. After all, WotC DID reprint some cards from Neo Block already: Moo-Moo Milk, Super Scoop Up and Energy Charge (renamed as Power Charge) in Expedition. They also reprinted Rainbow Energy in Aquapolis (I know it’s not in Neo Block, but they did keep Rainbow Energy alive in doing so), and made Professor Elm a Best-Of Promo. Remember also that they reprinted some Base Set cards not only in Legendary Collection, like Scoop Up and Pokemon Trader, which "did not change the current Modified environment at all (end sarcasm), but also in Expedition, like Full Heal and Switch. Maybe they’ll reprint some more cards in Skyridge, like Recycle Energy, Double Gust, or even Gust of Wind? "And Cleffa?" Don’t worry about it guys. First of all, they WILL reprint it, somehow (probably as a Best-Of Promo). Secondly, even if they don’t reprint it, at least I got rid of the Baby Rule. *evil smirk*

One final thing. In last Friday’s WotC chat, there was mention of a WotC-only set. It’s still very speculative at this stage, but WotC might just bring some cards back in THAT set. How about bringing back Double Gust or Gust of Wind?

"Hey… You’re an idiot! Tyrogue is God!" etc.

Please note that both Top 5 classifications are entirely my opinion. If everyone in the world had my own opinion, the world would be a very dull place. I respect your opinion, but please, if you’re going to write me about what you think, support your point of view with reasons, and (most importantly) keep it clean - both from cuss words and from viruses.

Alexander Farrugia a.k.a. X-Act