– Team Up
March 12, 2019
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Bill’s Analysis (SM – Team Up 133/181) is a new Trainer-Supporter; it lets you look at the top seven cards of your deck, then add up to two Trainer cards you find there to your hand. Most competitive Standard Format and Expanded Format decks vary from a few cards shy of being half made up of Trainer cards, to more like three-fourths Trainer cards, so odds are good you’ll see at least two of them when you use the card. It is still possible to whiff on Bill’s Analysis, however; it is just less likely to be a true failure to find even one Trainer in seven cards than failing to find one or two Trainers that were even remotely worth having used your Supporter for the turn on this card. Adding two Item cards to your hand can do quite a bit; it creates simple combos with the search you already run to effectively allow Bill’s Analysis to also grab Pokémon or Energy cards. Not a lot can snag Stadium cards from your deck, so having another option is great, but unlike Trainers in general, Stadium cards are a very small part of decks. Plus, you may have already used one this turn, so you’re (at best) prepping for the future or grabbing discard fodder if that is claiming a Stadium or nothing. Bill’s Analysis can snag Supporter cards, but unless someone finally figured out how to make Magnezone (BW – Plasma Storm 46/135) work, it’s like the situation with snagging a Stadium card after having already used one, though more likely to occur.
The way I see it, there are two kinds of decks that could make good use of Bill’s Analysis but both already have other options. Decks that run a lot of Item cards can get the exact two they need BUT in both the Standard and Expanded Formats, you’ve got so much draw-power that naturally combos with playing out your hand, you don’t really need Bill’s Analysis on top of that. Then there are the decks, where stall/control or simply having a more complicated setup, that need to hit certain Item cards at certain times. Once again, we already have proven alternatives to Bill’s Analysis: Alolan Ninetales-GX (SM – Lost Thunder 132/214, 205/214, 225/214), Skyla, Trainers’ Mail, and Volkner all spring to mind. Either you’ve got more reliable search (all but Trainers’ Mail look at your entire deck) or you’ve got less search BUT from an Item, not a Supporter or the Ability of a Stage 1 Pokémon-GX. This led me to believe Bill’s Analysis would probably have to wait longer before it had a chance to shine but nope, already happened. Standard Format Stall/Control decks have already found it useful. Sometimes they need to spam Item cards, like Crushing Hammer. Thanks to other control elements in the deck, they can spare Bill’s Analysis to build for future turns (and with less fear of an opponent disrupting their own hand). The Limited Format is a place where Bill’s Analysis can also shine; fewer Trainers in your deck, but also a smaller deck size and the Trainers you do run tend to be more important. It is also less likely your opponent can wreck your own hand, though it is still a risk.
While I didn’t see as much potential in this card, former reviewer 21times did, having it as his 8th place pick. Given its performance in the stall/control decks a few weeks back at the Collinsville, IL Regional Championship, I’d say 21times was onto something.
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