– Team Up

Date Reviewed:
June 4, 2019

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 2.25
Expanded: 2.25
Limited: 3.25

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

Reviews Below:

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I recalled briefly mentioning Aegislash in one of the Doublade reviews, but we are now here on the entire card. This is another Pokémon that benefits from Dusk Stone, except that you would have to have Honedge in play prior to your next turn using Dusk Stone, because you can manually evolve Honedge into Doublade, and then use Dusk Stone to evolve it again. So while Dusk Stone can fake being Rare Candies, you need to have additional cards in your deck to perform this.

Anyways, Aegislash has an ability and an attack. Royal Guard makes Aegislash take 40 less damage from attacks from either player, and with 140 HP, it needs 180 damage to KO it, or 200 damage from Psychic Pokemon. Throw in Full Metal Wall’s effect and possibly Metal Frying Pan or Metal Core Barrier, and Aegislash becomes ridiculously difficult to KO unless you’re facing ReshiZard or Blacephalon due to weakness. Assuming the ability, Full Metal Wall’s effect, and Metal Frying Pan, you are taking 100 less damage. All three damaging reducing effects take place AFTER weakness and resistance, so there won’t be any tricky calculations today!

But what else can it do besides tanking damage? It’s attack Shield Bash costs MCC for 100 damage, and this attack’s damage isn’t affected by any effects on the opponent’s Active Pokemon. No opposing damage reduction effects in the world will stop this attack from doing the exact amount of damage… it should. Put in Choice Band, and you’ve exactly OHKOed Gardevoir & Sylveon due to Weakness! So far, if this is all Aegislash had to offer, it’d be a pretty mediocre card. You can go to an alternate route, that is gaining access to past attacks of your previous evolution via Memory Energy or Shining Celebi. Tool Drop seems to be the appeal there if you can somehow get lots of tools in play and not have it remove. While Standard has Field Blower or Faba to remove them, Expanded ruins it all with Startling Megaphone!

Again, Dusk Stone is useful to evolve certain Pokémon on the turn you played this card, but ultimately, it has to compete with other Stage 2 Aegislash cards in their respective formats’ card pools.


  • Standard: 2.5/5
  • Expanded: 2.5/5
  • Limited: 3/5
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Yesterday we covered both Dusk Stone and Honchkrow-GX in separate reviews, to kick of Dusk Stone Week. Today we look at Aegislash (SM – Team Up 109/181), our most recent Aegislash card. To make sure neither you nor I forget, let me state this is a single-Prize Pokémon; given how important Pokémon-GX are to the metagame, this has almost become an advantage in its own right. It is a Stage 2, so you’ll need time and several cards for it to hit the field, but we’ll discuss this more a bit later. This Aegislash is a [M] Type. I’m not seeing a lot of [Y] focused decks in recent top cuts, nor many using the portion of [W] Pokémon which are also [M] Weak, but it hasn’t been that long since the glory days of cards like Gardevoir-GX, so all hope is not lost. [L] focused decks aren’t as big as they were prior to SM – Unbroken Bonds, which is good, because most [L] Pokémon – almost all in Standard – are [M] Resistant. This would seem like a poor Typing except we’ve gotten some solid pieces of [M] Pokémon and Energy support.

Aegislash has 140 HP, which is big enough to be more likely to survive an attack than not, BUT ONLY JUST. This is a concern and means Aegislash will have to find a strategy where it is acceptable for it to get OHKO’d quite a bit or run cards that will make it harder to KO (like some of the aforementioned [M] support). [R] Weakness is AWFUL what with Blacephalon-GX/Naganadel decks, Blacephalon decks, and Reshiram & Charizard-GX decks all being pretty hot right now. The slight silver lining is most of the big attacks in these decks score OHKO’s before Weakness; this just saves them some resources or lets them use lesser attacks. Aegislash does enjoy [P] Resistance; not a game-changer, but it can come in handy during certain matchups. Aegislash has a Retreat Cost of [CCC], which will be painful to pay at full price… but I’m actually disappointed it wasn’t one higher. [CCC] is so close to [CCCC] it won’t often be an improvement, while [CCCC] would have allowed Aegislash the option of using Buff Padding.

Aegislash has one Ability and one attack, the former being “Royal Guard” and the latter being “Shield Bash”. Royal Guard states that “this Pokémon” takes 40 less damage from attacks after Weakness and/or Resistance has been applied. Reducing it before would have been better, but that isn’t how most such defensive effects work due to the order of operations. Just a fun fact; while it probably won’t happen in competitive play, in the Expanded Format it is possible to face a Pokémon that is both [R] and [P] Type; when that happens, you’d first double the damage (for Weakness), subtract 20 (for Resistance), and finally subtract another 40 (for the Ability). Royal Guard lets Aegislash fake having 180 HP against damage from a single attack, having 220 against two attacks, etc. Not great, but fairly good… which is also an apt description for Shield Bash. It costs [MCC] so it isn’t too hard to splash into an off-Type deck, and it can take advantage of Energy acceleration like Double Colorless Energy. It does 100 damage, which isn’t great, but it ignores effects on your opponent’s Active Pokémon, including the ones that would reduce the damage being done. Plus, you’re already a more defensively minded card, so 100 may just barely be enough to win the Prize trade.

Aegislash Evolves from Doublade which Evolves from Honedge (or a Ditto {*}, via that card’s Ability). While they aren’t all boring, vanilla cards, none of them seem good enough to be worth highlighting given we’re already on paragraph four and we mostly want Honedge to hide on the Bench until it Evolves. There are two different Doublade worth mentioning, though: Doublade (XY – Primal Slash 99/160) for Expanded, and Doublade (SM – Team Up 108/181) for either Standard or Expanded Format play. Both are small Stage 1 Pokémon, but each has one GOOD attack. XY – Primal Slash 99/160 knows “False Swipe”, which costs [CC]. It is “tails fails”, but when it works it puts damage counters on your opponent’s Active until that Pokémon is down to 10 HP. Expanded has tricks to let you reflip the coin and easily inflict Poison to finish off anything you just injured for a pseudo-OHKO. SM – Team Up 108/109 knows “Tool Drop” for [CC], and can use it to do 30 damage for each Tool card attached to a Pokémon in play. OTHER cards with similar attacks have been part of functional (sometimes even competitive) decks… and you can use Celebi-EX, Memory Energy, Shining Celebi or Shrine of Memories to let an Aegislash use the attacks from its lower Stage(s).

One of the other versions of Aegislash is worth a glance as well. Aegislash (XY 86/146) has the Ability “Stance Change” and the attack “King’s Shield”. The Ability lets you swap this Aegislash from the field with one in your hand, so you can get rid of it after it has done its job, but not lose out on the Energy or other cards you’ve invested. Which is good, because it needs [MMCC] for its attack. King’s Shield only does 50 damage, and it cannot be used next turn unless you can reset the effect (no, Stance Change won’t do that). This would be bad except it has another, beneficial effect; King’s Shield prevents all damage done to “that Pokémon” during your opponent’s next turn. There are a few others that look interesting, but seem like they need a different deck than today’s version.

While I’ve heard talk of decks using either of the Doublade I mentioned, either on their own or with a combo so that an Aegislash can use their attack, it was when each card was new. There are no modern, recent results to consider, so we’re probably looking at “fun” decks; I’m not promising you a “rogue” deck based just on Theorymon… or at least, not in this case. I confess, my Inner Johnny is screaming at me how “awesome” it would be to partner as much of this stuff together as I could. After all, the [M] Type support I mentioned includes cards like Metal Frying Pan, letting Aegislash soak not only another 30 damage but letting you ignore its [R] Weakness. Dhelmise (SM – Guardians Rising 56/145; SM – Black Star Promos SM53) can up the damage being done. Genesect-GX has an Ability which lets it have two Tools attached to itself at once. You could also ignore the Tool Drop route and just focus on tanking hits… but then you’ll have to explain why you’re not running Lucario & Melmetal-GX, Melmetal, or Melmetal-GX instead. If you DO go with the crazy combo route, though, Dusk Stone should serve you better than Rare Candy.


Standard: 2/5

Expanded: 2/5

Limited: 3.5/5

The above scores consider both running Aegislash as a deck’s focus or using it with one of the Doublade I mentioned in the above article.  Now you know why we didn’t look at it before. While nothing is especially bad, neither is any aspect of it particularly good. Enjoy Aegislash in a “fun” deck for Standard or Expanded, or as a competent Stage 2 if pull the entire line at a Limited Format event. Feel free to prove me wrong by repeatedly doing well with it in either Standard or Expanded, though.

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