Sun & Moon Promos SM34
January 2, 2018
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYBODY!!
Super sorry it’s been so long with my absence, but I’ve ended up having some…technical difficulties on my end, but fear not! I may have gotten out of the groove for writing Cards of the Day cause of these shenanigans, but I’m back to settle the score in this WEEK OF PROMOS!! I’ll also work on catching up to all the cards that I missed while I was dealing with all of that, BUT IN THE MEANTIME, WELCOME TO BEWEAR-GX!!!
This cuddly bear comes out of the Bewear-GX Box, which was released back in June of this…well, last year. And he’s completely Colorless! The last time we saw a Colorless Big Promo Pokemon, it ended up winning Worlds (thanks M-Audino-EX), so it could be that Bewear-GX is able to pull off the same strats. Of course, M Audino-EX had a lot going for it, so we’ll have to see what Bewear-GX holds!
His first move is Bear Hug, which costs 3 Energy, deals 80 damage, and is the only card that invites you to openly hug your opponent until they can’t stand it anymore…okay, it doesn’t do that, it just prevents the Defending Pokemon from retreating. Kinda like what anyone you give a Bear Hug would want to do but wouldn’t be able to do cause you’re holding onto them so tightly! NAILED IT
His second attack is Double Impact, which is…not as impressive either. It’s 4-Energy put towards a move that deals up to 200 damage based on coin flips, meaning you average around 100 damage overall which isn’t very good for an attack that costs so much. As usual, Bear Hug’s consistency makes it good, even if its effect isn’t that great, while Double Impact is a bit janky at its best.
But there is one move that does provide something very interesting: the GX Move BIG THROW GX!! For the same amount as Double Impact, this attack simply discards the Active Pokemon and all cards attached to it. Just a big ol NOPE to your opponent whenever you’re ready to unleash Bewear-GX’s wrath! Keep in mind though that this attack doesn’t earn you a Prize or two because it’s discarding the other Pokemon instead of Knocking them Out, but it also doesn’t have the restriction that you can’t use it if they have no Benched Pokemon, meaning you could potentially donk your opponent with this move!
Sadly, that’s…about where all the good stops. Big Throw GX likely won’t be winning you games on its own, but rather it can lead to you winning the game if you manage to take out a big threat of your opponent’s with ease. Double Impact is okay most of the time, but Bear Hug is pretty decent, hitting a 2HKO for most Pokemon that aren’t EX/GX, and with a Choice Band it can 2HKO even most of those. If the opponent doesn’t have a Switching card handy like Guzma or a recovery card like Acerola, it’s gonna be tough to get around Bear Hug. So Bewear-GX has potential.
Just that the potential is attached to a 210 HP Stage 1 Pokemon-GX with hefty costs.
Standard: 3/5 (the generic costs are off-set by their lackluster effects, and the overall damage potential for Bewear-GX is nerfed pretty heavily)
Expanded: 2.5/5 (I’d be sketchier if Fighting decks are a major contender in your locals, though it’s more than likely to be Dark decks which Bewear-GX can’t hit that hard against in the first place)
Limited: N/A (PROMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOS)
Arora Notealus: He’s got his ups and downs, just like any bear! That tries to hug you. And is your size. And had to deal with wanting to be cuddled as a smaller bear cub all the time – geez, Bewear, you’re freaking scary…
Side Reviews: #4 Kartana-GX – I missed out on saying that Kartana-GX is probably one of the best cards in the Burning Shadows set, having the ability to swap itself out with its attack, reduce the Special Energy your opponent has simply by coming into play, and even offering a move that straight up gets you a Prize. It’s probably one of the more powerful Ultra Beast GX to come out, and I hope it’s shining through on that point.
#3 Lusamine – This is definitely one of the more interesting cards to bring out in this set, allowing you to nab a lot of different cards for the purposes of recycling them and using them again. The main issue is that you have to wait a turn on the other Supporters you choose, which makes her a bit of a niche one-of in my opinion. You could run 2 of her though, perpetually cycling her back alongside another Supporter or Stadium card to keep a loop going.
#2 Counter Catcher – A very useful card that allows for an effective Lysandre that doesn’t take up your Supporter for the turn, even if it only works when you have more Prizes left than your opponent. Still, it could be used to grab out a Bench-sitter that’s trying to avoid you, or it could be used to snag something that evaded your grasp the last turn. It won’t find a spot in every deck, but for those decks that can make room for it, Counter Catcher is a great pick!
Next Time: Sometimes you just need the Basics of a Legendary…
Our second subject this week (and year) is Bewear-GX (SM – Black Star Promos SM34). I’m starting to regret selecting this card for review, because it does not lend itself all that well to my attempt at being concise. Simply put, the only thing about this card that is really bad is the [F] Weakness, and that is entirely metagame dependent; six months from now, it might not matter or it might become even worse. A Stage 1 with 210 HP can otherwise take a pounding, having all [C] Energy costs normally makes it easy to splash into a deck… except the three attacks here require [CCC] or [CCCC]. Speaking of Colorless, that means no exploiting Weakness, which isn’t worth the lack of Resistance or currently available Type-based support. Plus, you might get walled by Necrozma-GX. Throw in the [CCC] Retreat Cost, and you need some great attacks to justify its inclusion in a deck. Instead, we get a mediocre attack (“Bear Hug”), a poor attack (“Double Impact”), and a curious attack (“Big Throw-GX”). Bear Hug is okay if you can find something else to make Bewear-GX worth running, and Big Throw-GX might prove useful if it wrecks an opponent’s field by discarding something important. Note: it does not KO the discarded Pokémon, so you’ll take no Prize(s). Double Impact, unfortunately, costs a bit too much for me to be comfortable relying on coin flips.
What keeps Bewear-GX from being completely hopeless is that all Stufful – from which it has to Evolve – are 70 HP Basics and the various non-Pokémon-GX versions of Bewear, which are Stage 1 Pokémon with either 120 or 130 HP. In particular, two of the 130 HP versions have Abilities and attacks that kind of work together. SM – Guardians Rising 113/145 has the Ability “Rake It In” that simply allows you to draw three cards from your deck when you Evolve one of your Pokémon into it from hand… an extra three cards is almost always nice. Its attack only does 60 for [CCC] unless you’re attacking a Basic Pokémon, at which point it does good 120. SM – Crimson Invasion 56/111 has the Ability “Fluffy: except against [R] Types, Fluffly reduces the damage it takes from attacks made by your opponent’s Pokémon by 30 after Weakness/Resistance. For [FCC], its attack also only doees 60 damage, but this time it hits for 120 if the opponent’s Active is an Evolution. It is also a [F] Type, allowing it to exploit Weakness and make use of cards like Strong Energy. It also is not [F] Weak, but [P] Weak. No Weakness is good, but at least this diversifies things.
Just maybe the two Bewear can work together in a deck, going for solid hits (mostly 2HKO’s, sometimes OHKO’s) against the correct targets. Bewear-GX then steps up for when you just need something bigger, and potentially because its GX-attack can just discard one problem Pokémon from the field, so long as you can make it Active before you attack it. Its value lies in working with the same Evolution line and (mostly) the exact same other resources. The thing is, this is still a hypothetical deck; I’ve never tried to build it nor have I ever seen it. What’s more, Bewear-GX would at best be a TecH attacker, and the role would probably be better filled by something else.
-Colorless 210 HP with Fighting Weakness and a retreat of three.
-Bear Hug does 80 for CCC and prevents retreating. Not too special.
-Double Impact costs CCCC and makes you flip 2 coins. For each heads, this attack does 100. 25% could be no damage; 50% could be 100 damage; 25% could be 200 damage. Very costly and unreliable attack to use.
-Big Throw GX can be good, but the wording of “discarding the Defending Pokémon and all cards attached to it” does not count as that Pokémon being Knocked Out; you cannot get a prize card from this attack. You could, however, win the game due to your opponent having no bench Pokémon to replace after the Defending Pokémon was discarded.
Necrozma GX completely walls from this Pokémon, but even then, Big Throw can temporarily get an Active Necrozma out from play.
Limited: N/A (promo)
Bewear GX (SM34) would probably qualify as one of the cutest Pokemon in the game. What? It’s pink. It’s fluffy. It looks like you just want to run up to it and give it a big bear hug. With a name like Bewear you’d think it look something like a cross between Gengar and Necrozma… no sorry that’s if it were spelled Beware. The way this is spelled is like what goes through my mind at 630 ish every morning (“What will I be wearing today?).
Anyway, Bewear GX stands in line with several other promo Pokemon last year that were, well, um, somewhat underwhelming. I had a discussion about this with someone the other day who pointed out that Pokemon might delay the new Solgaleo GX, and he suspected that the delay might be the result of slow sales of several of last year’s promo cards. I looked at the shelves in my local grocery / department store yesterday when I was shopping, and this seems like a valid assumption. The shelves were loaded with Tasreena GX, Lycanroc GX, Charizard GX, and other disappointing GX’s that no competitive player would purchase. In fairness, the Team Skull box featuring Golisopod GX and Salazzle GX was good, and there’s a promo Zoroark GX as well, but overall, Pokemon didn’t put its best cards into promos last year.
Unfortunately, Bewear GX falls into that category. Its three and four attachment (all colorless) attacks do ridiculously low damage (even with Victini, your chances of hitting for 200 are only about 1 in 3), and its GX attack might actually help your opponent. For example, if you use the GX attack on a Pokemon that’s already damaged, you’re doing your opponent a favor by erasing all damage off of that card. The only way this GX attack is good is if your opponent doesn’t have any Pokemon on the bench. In that situation, I believe you would actually win the game… but I’m not 100% sure on that and I just don’t have the time to go test it. And in today’s meta where players are filling their benches up with support Pokemon, it just doesn’t seem like you’re going to run into a ton of opportunities where that situation will present itself.
Standard: 2 out of 5
The only time I’ve faced someone playing Bewear GX, I was actually running Metagross GX and Necrozma GX. I started Beldum and just let my opponent KO that Pokemon and promoted Necrozma into the active. I had noticed in the lead up before the coin flip that my opponent was running an all colorless deck. It took them a couple of turns, but they figured out that it was a no win situation for them and they simply conceded. Yet another reason to take a pass on Bewear GX.
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