– Rebel Clash
June 15, 2020
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
-Decent tool for Fire Pokemon, acting similar to Rocky Helmet by putting 2 damage counters between turns due to Burn Special Condition, but could be better than Rocky Helmet because damage could accumulate if the Defending Pokémon stays Burned.
-Arcanine from Rebel Clash has an ability that raises its max HP by 100 if it has a Burning Scarf attached to it. It’s Max HP will go up from 130 to 230 (or 160 to 260 HP if it was Arcanine BREAK).
Burning Scarf (SSH – Rebel Clash 155/192) is a new Pokémon Tool. Its effect is a reactive or triggered one, only working when the Active [R] Pokémon to which it is equipped is damaged by an opposing Pokémon’s attack. If all those conditions are met, then the attacking Pokémon is Burned. If Burning Scarf is attached to a non-[R] Type, it may as well have no effect. If the Fire Pokémon to which it is attached is on your Bench, same deal. If your opponent’s Pokémon attacks but doesn’t do damage with that attack, again, nothing happens. Burning Scarf does work whether the Pokémon sporting it is KO’d or survives the hit, assuming the rest of the criteria I just gave are all met.
Burn is a Special Condition that places two damage counters on the afflicted Pokémon, during the Pokémon Checkup, then has the controller of that Pokémon flip a coin. If “tails”, the Pokémon remains Burned; if “heads”, Burn goes away on its own. Burning Scarf can fake increasing the damage from your attacks, but doing so is always you hoping your opponent can’t discard it with Tool Scrapper, negate it with Lysandre Labs, force something else up front to attack with Boss’s Orders, etc. The good and bad news is that damage counters are being placed; this means Weakness/Resistance never apply, but some other protective effects will and won’t (versus effects that alter damage done). It also means you can have a form of offense that works even if your [R] Pokémon are not attacking.
Arcanine (SSH – Rebel Clash 028/192) has an Ability, “Warming Up”, that requires Burning Scarf be attached to Arcanine to work. We’ll detail how good (or not) this is in Arcanine’s own review, which should go later today, Time Zone differences withstanding. For now, whether it makes Arcanine awesome or just fashionable, I’ll still consider that a bonus… especially as it makes it ever-so-slightly more plausible that another future card could have a similar trick.
Burning Scarf isn’t as good as I’d like. If I’m focused on offensive and want a damage boost, Vitality Band only adds 10 damage to the equipped Pokémon’s attacks… and even then, only if the attack is one capable of inflicting damage in the first place. It works for attackers of any Type, and unless one attaches it early, will do so before one’s opponent has a chance to discard it. Nor is Vitality Band one of the best Tools right now; Air Balloon, Big Charm, etc. may all prove more useful. I really wonder if Burning Scarf would have been better if it just added Burn to attacks, because I’m not thinking of a lot of Fire Pokémon where Burning Scarf is a good fit. Fire’s main alternate strategies – so far as I recall – are Mill or Energy denial. Mill decks might prefer Cursed Shovel, but probably prefer some other generally useful Tool such as Big Charm. On the other hand, if you’re keeping your opponent Energy poor, they should be attacking you less often, if at all.
In Expanded, not only are there more counters to Tools in general, but legendary competition like Choice Band, Float Stone, Muscle Band, and many more. The Limited Format, assuming you pull at least a few Fire Pokémon worth running as well, is where Burning Scarf can shine. Odds are good your opponent won’t have blistering OHKO’s happening all the time. In fact, even 2HKO’s may be out of reach. You also won’t have to worry about as strong of Tool counters, either.
Burning Scarf is not a must-run for Fire Pokémon other than the new Arcanine, and spoiler, I’m not seeing Arcanine decks placing well in the few major tournaments still taking place and that have results available over on Limitless. It isn’t a bad card, but neither is it good; at best it seems adequate in its niche, at worst it is mediocre even there.
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