Drapion V – Vivid Voltage
Date Reviewed: February 12, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Drapion V (SW – Vivid Voltage 106/185, 175/185) is a Darkness type, which is “okay”. They aren’t (currently) great for exploiting Weakness, but that might be because Eternatus VMAX is such a strong deck that [D] Weak Pokémon have been driven from competitive play (like Dragapult VMAX). Anti-[D] effects aren’t a concern, and neither are the trace amounts of [D] Resistance. [D] support is so-so as well; there’s a decent amount of it, but unless you count things like Eternatus VMAX and Crobat V. As a Pokémon V, Drapion V gives up an extra Prize when KO’d, can’t make use of some support, and has to deal with certain anti-Pokémon V effects. It also means that Drapion V might have better effects (relative to costs), is a Basic instead of a Stage 1, and has a lot more HP than baseline Drapion cards.
Being a Basic is the best: no waiting to evolve, no additional cards to field it. 210 HP is the low end for typical Basic Pokémon V, and I literally use it as the minimum amount for what I consider “big” attacks. In other words, it is good. [F] Weakness is relatively safe; I keep expecting Fighting decks to start tearing things up, but I keep being wrong. That might finally change with SW – Battle Styles, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. No Resistance is the worst, but also the norm, so it doesn’t really hurt Drapion V. The Retreat Cost of [CCCC] is somewhat unfortunate; anything above [CC] means you should probably rely on switching effects, but [CCCC] would let you make use of Buff Padding. Maybe it wouldn’t matter, but it is still nice to have options.
Drapion V knows two attacks. [DCC] pays for “Wrack Down”, which does 70 damage. This is bad; we’re at the point when 90-for-three isn’t good enough, and Wrack Down isn’t even reaching that level of damage. Let me put it this way; in the mirror match, we’re talking three hits to KO itself. Though you’d probably just attach another Energy and move onto “Hazardous Claws”, as it costs [DCCC]. Hazardous Claws does 130 damage and both Poisons and Paralyzes the opposing Active, but it also requires you discard two Energy from Drapion V. If you can combine it with enough disruption and Energy acceleration, you could get a nice softlock going. You might break it yourself if your opponent’s Active expires going into their turn, which is somewhat likely given that Hazardous Claws 2HKO’s most Basic Pokémon V.
Still, someone made a deck with it in Japan and won an event. If you want details, you can watch any of the same Youtube videos I did when it happened back in (I think) October. I haven’t heard much about it since, and I’m not too surprised. It sounds like a fun deck, and it is something different, but I don’t think it has had any significant success since those early reports. Where it might have a future is in Expanded. Simply put, it is easier to get it going and there are some crazy combos you can perform with a reliable Paralysis lock. While still not easy, fueling Drapion V turn after turn is a lot more doable here as well. Dark Patch, Double Colorless Energy, etc.
- Standard: 2/5
- Expanded: 2/5
I’m tempted to score it lower, but Drapion V feels like the front man for a nasty control deck. It is just we don’t have the rest of that deck, or we do but not enough people have assembled it. It really only just avoids minimum marks, however; Wrack Down is just sad.
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