– Unified Minds
August 6, 2019
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Now we can’t be missing another prominent character in the Let’s Go series, can’t we? Cause we’ve got Red and Green covered, and now we’re missing Rival Blue!
He is a Supporter that makes you draw cards until you have 8 cards on your hand at the END OF YOUR TURN. All caps because the wording is a pretty important factor to determine how useful Blue would be. You won’t be able to make use of your current turn, but you will on your next turn, assuming your opponent doesn’t shuffle your hand via Judge. Unless you can argue that this is the only Supporter you can use due to only this Supporter being in your hand, you would’ve wished you’ve used a better supporter that you can actually make use of on your turn. This looks like a better Tropical Beach without the Stadium slot and nets you one more card, and doesn’t force you to end your turn.
However, you are at the mercy to your opponent because they’ll do anything to manipulate your hand, whether it is by getting 8 cards via Copycat, lowering their hand size via Reset Stamp, or to discard cards from their hand. Sometimes, those eight cards won’t mean anything if they can’t make use of those. Those scenarios don’t happen too often, and even if it does, your opponent just wasted resources trying to disrupt your hand. You can make your opponent try to respond again if you played Blue’s Tactics.
He’s one of those cards that have potential in Standard due to less competition than Expanded, where it is competing in a heavily crowded card pool.
I’m willing to bet that it’s because of me that this card made it on the list.
Blue’s Tactics is a Supporter that lets you fill up your hand to 8 cards, but this happens at the end of the turn. Now I know what you’re probably thinking: “This card is so bad! How could you think this card is better than something like Blizzard Town?” And the answer to that is simple, Blue’s Tactics ain’t letting your opponent draw up to 8 cards or stop you from attacking, so that’s that.
Blue’s Tactics doesn’t work like other Supporters that most people want to run, cause it’s a delayed effect and doesn’t give you the full benefit until your next turn, since you can’t play any of the cards you draw with its effect during your opponent’s turn. So competitively-speaking, most people are bound to dismiss this card, and they’re right – compared with cards like Cynthia, Judge, Lillie, Hau or even something that doesn’t see play at all like…*shudders*…Whitney, this card ain’t that great. You play it, it does nothing, you lose your Supporter for the turn, and that’s it. Compared to everything else, which gives you something immediately when you play it, this card doesn’t work.
Alright now that I’ve talked about why this card is bad, let’s talk about why this card is good – you get to draw up to 8 cards from your deck. That’s about as much of an upside as any, but I think this will benefit decks that run a lot of Items and pull off little tricks with their cards rather than sit solely on their Supporter for the turn to do the work for them. Yeah that’s right, I’m calling out all those other Supporters and be like, “YO!! Where’s my next turn prep?” Blue has your back with that, since if you have a deck that runs a lot of cards that can be played easily – like Items – you can get a lot of mileage out of this type of effect and accelerate past what your opponent could reasonably deal with. Drawing cards should never be shunned just cause of some technicality like not playing those cards right away – if you can think another turn ahead, you’re probably putting yourself in a winning position, and that’s where I think the brilliance of Blue’s Tactics comes into play.
“But you always beat your rival Blue in the games,” I hear you say. And to that, I say stop trying to make comparisons with the main series games.
Standard: 3.5/5 (good draw power is good, even if it’s at the end of your turn)
Expanded: 2.5/5 (admittedly…he’s harder to place here, since there are just way too many good draw Supporters)
Limited: 4.5/5 (draw is draw is draw)
Arora Notealus: There is one card that’s going to come up on the list that will definitely keep Blue’s Tactics at bay most of the time, and I suspect it will be the card that keeps Blue’s Tactics away from competitive in the long run, assuming it sees a lot of play. So I don’t think things look great for Blue’s Tactics in the long run, certainly, and I won’t delude myself by saying it’s the best draw Supporter in the current format – that obviously goes to Cynthia. But I think that more than anything, this is going to be a sleeper card in the format until Cynthia drops out, and assuming no other good draw Supporter has come up in the format by that time one year from now when that rotation happens comes around, Blue’s Tactics will probably be in a really solid spot to take her place…potentially…possibly…
Next Time: Course when things are in need of heating up, there are certain things that need to be reheated!
Blue’s Tactics (SM – Unified Minds 188/236, 231/236) is a new Trainer-Supporter as well as our pick for the 9th best card of SM – Unified Minds. Blue’s Tactics lets you draw until you have eight cards in hand, the same yield Lillie has when you use her on your first turn. The catch? You don’t draw until the end of your turn. Let me repeat that: the end of your turn. This greatly shifts the dynamic of the draw power. Normally, one has the option of using a draw Supporter as a potential lead-in to combos or to refill your hand in preparation for the next turn. So, any cards you are lacking for a particular play, you can try and draw into them and if you have everything you need, you can just refresh your hand after using the rest. Blue’s Tactics may only do the latter.
However, Blue’s Tactics does the latter quite well, so the question becomes “What decks would benefit from this specialization?” The answer are decks that can burn through their hands incredibly fast during their turn, those that empty their hand as a result of attacking, and those that require you have a particular hand-size for attacking. With all three approaches, the three-fold concerns are that you’ll end up with a cluttered hand (reducing draw yield), that another Supporter could do the job better, and the risk you’ll go into a turn where you need to draw now rather than at the end of your turn, but all you have is Blue’s Tactics in hand. Technically, these are concerns all Supporters face, but I believe the nature of Blue’s Tactics will make it more prone to these issues. In all cases, a non-Supporter effect that provides supplemental draw, recycling, and/or search seems advisable, if not a necessity.
For either approach, supplemental draw, recycling, or search effects are highly recommended, because without them you’re stuck with whatever is in hand at the start of your turn since your Supporter-usage is going towards Blue’s Tactics. What really has me worried is your opponent also has an entire turn to take advantage of you using Blue’s Tactics. Copycat, Judge, and Rest Stamp spring readily to mind. Expanded does its usual thing, providing additional combos, but also counters and competition. I suspect the net result is less favorable to Blue’s Tactics, at least in the short term. In the Limited Format, any draw power is welcome, so Blue’s Tactics scores well there. The caveat is hands are more easily cluttered here, which is a problem for any “Draw until you have…” effects.
Blue’s Tactics is quite the specialist, and specialists tend to make a mockery out of our scoring system. With the lack of UPR-On tournament results and my personal lack of play-testing, I could have missed the deck that shows how Blue’s Tactics gets things done. Blue’s Tactics didn’t make my personal list, and I can’t say I think it deserved to make the countdown, I still understand why aroramage picked it.
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