Crystal Cave – Evolving Skies
Date Reviewed: September 13, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
I’ve already mentioned Crystal Cave (SW – Evolving Skies 144/203, 230/203) in at least one CotD already, but it is time for a proper review. This Trainer-Stadium can be used once by the turn player, before attacking, during their turn. Doing so heals 30 damage from each of your [N] or [M] type Pokémon. 30 isn’t a huge amount, but it can be just enough to change a 2HKO into a 3HKO. It can’t do anything against OHKO’s, though, because healing happens after the fact. Dragon types are the new-old (or is that old-new?) thing, having disappeared after the end of the Sun & Moon series. At least some probably have HP scores that, at least in certain matches, will benefit from Crystal cave.
Metal types, namely Zacian V, are were pretty strong pre-rotation. Now that they’ve lost many of their damage reducing tricks, this Stadium may not benefit them as much as it could have, but it seems worth a try to me. While I don’t know of any great decks already using it, Crystal Cave seems like a decent enough card. Especially if we get more Dragon and/or Metal types that focus on reducing damage taken, or healing after the fact. Less so in Expanded, just because of all the other great Stadium cards… but we do still have things like Lucario & Melmetal-GX, Metal Frying Pan, etc. to combine mild healing with taking less damage.
- Standard: 3/5
- Expanded: 3/5
When looking at what Crystal Cave does, it kind of reminds me of another familiar card. This is a stadium card while lets you heal 30 damage from each of their Dragon and Metal-type Pokemon. This doesn’t seem to be a lot of healing, but it can still shift certain attacks that would’ve been a 2HKO and turn it into a 3HKO.
I may not have chimed in around early 2015 when the review crew looked at Rough Seas from XY Primal Clash, as it is also a Stadium card that heals 30 damage from your Water and Lightning-type pokemon. It was a good card before, and even now in Expanded, where there are plentiful of Water or Lightning types that would like a little bit of healing to edge out of certain future KOs. Rough Seas has been competitively used in a few decks, but there are not many examples. The only example I can find is from a World Championship deck called “Ninja Blitz”. This deck contained three copies of Rough Seas, and it was used to not only replace existing Stadium cards in play, but to also heal Greninja BREAK, a fairly durable Pokémon at the time that only gives up a single prize. I don’t think Lightning based decks used Rough Seas….well, not so much now with Thunder Mountain (*) taking priority over anything else.
There’s enough Dragon and Metal Pokémon in either format that Crystal Cave can heal such as Zacian-V and Rayquaza VMAX in Standard, with additional Pokémon such as Lucario & Melmetal-GX. Unless there’s another Stadium card that provides a better role for Dragon and Metal types, you can look no further than Crystal Cave.
And I just realized that Crystal Cave is going to make Zacian-V/ADP-GX more durable in Expanded as this Stadium card heals both of them!
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