– Cosmic Eclipse

Date Reviewed:
July 20, 2020

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 3.00
Expanded: 3.00
Limited: 3.00

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.

Reviews Below:

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Excadrill (SM – Cosmic Eclipse 115/236, 246/115) is a single-Prize Pokémon with no other specialty mechanics.  Yes, even though it received a spiffy Full Art version.  Excadrill is a Fighting type, which is very good when it comes to type-matching.  A big deal here is the Pikarom match-up; besides Pikachu & Zekrom-GX itself, such decks tend to be mostly [F] Weak.  You will have to deal with [F] Resistance, but the anti-Fighting effects that exist aren’t likely to matter.  Fighting support is pretty good, maybe even great, with proven options in both Standard and Expanded.

Excadrill is a Stage 1 Pokémon; not as easy to run as a Basic, but far easier than a Stage 2.  140 HP large enough to avoid being especially fragile, but it is still low enough to be a probable OHKO; good thing the rest of the card means that’s acceptable.  [G] Weakness is relatively safe last I checked; there are a few competitive Grass decks, but only at the fringe.  No Resistance is the worst, but also typical, so it doesn’t really hurt Excadrill’s performance.  While a Retreat Cost of [CCCC] is technically the worst, Excadrill wasn’t likely to need less than three Energy, which requires more or less the same amount of effort to run.  At least this way, it qualifiers for cards like Buff Padding and Poké Maniac.

Excadrill knows two attacks, both priced at [F].  The good news is that means they’re both good and cheap.  The bad news is that means they either don’t hit hard, or will hit hard but with significant costs and/or conditions.  “Eleventh Hour Tackle” does 30 damage, but if you have three or fewer cards left in your deck, it does another 150.  180 for one Energy is pretty insane, even if it requires you’re within range of Bellelba & Brycen-Man decking you out.  “Drill Bazooka” delivers a still great 120, but forces you to discard the top four cards of your deck.  That’s a pretty expensive bit of self-mill that can easily backfire, but at least it does set up for you to use Eleventh Hour Tackle.

Let’s talk about related cards.  In this case, we’ll discuss the one Drilbur and the one other Excadrill worth it… but not by much.  They are Drilbur (SM – Cosmic Eclipse 114/236) and Excadrill (SM – Unified Minds 119/236), each have the same stats as today’s Excadrill, save for HP and Retreat Cost.  Both of these only have a Retreat Cost of [CC]; Drilbur has 70 HP while Excadrill has 120.  Both have attacks for a single Energy that recycles cards from your discard pile, shuffling them into your deck.  Well “card” in the case of Drilbur, while Excadrill shuffles four.  These could help you avoid decking out, if you went overboard (or just had some bad luck) with Drill Bazooka.  They also both have overpriced vanilla damage attacks.  Based on actual deck lists, Drilbur is worth running, the other Excadrill is not.

Which makes sense; unless you only need one Excadrill and can afford to evolve it from Ditto {*), you need Drilbur.  When you’re streaming a Stage 1 that attacks for one Energy, running an alternate version of it only makes sense if it does something really good… and attacking to recycle four cards is not good enough.  This is a link to the most recent Excadrill deck mentioned at Limitless.  It took 71st place at the Limitless Online Series – Qualifier #4 tournament.  Excadrill uses Drill Bazooka until it can switch to Eleventh Hour Tackle.  Zebstrika (SM – Lost Thunder 82/214) provides added draw power. This is backed up by some more general support, plus a little extra recycling and a little extra disruption.

I’ve never run or faced an Excadrill deck, but I’ve seen it used a few times as a spectator.  This deck is a Pikarom killer that can still do decently against the other major decks in the metagame.  At least, in the Standard Format; I don’t know if it is worth the risk in Expanded, where it is even easier for TecH some mill into your deck.  Then again, Expanded would also grant access to stuff like Focus Sash and Archen (BW – Plasma Blast 53/101).  If you’re feeling reckless, Excadrill is powerful in the Limited Format, but will deck you out much faster as Limited uses 40 card decks, not 60.


  • Standard: 3/5
  • Expanded: 3/5
  • Limited: 3/5

Excadrill is pretty much made by having one extremely favorable matchup with the top decks.  That isn’t to say it is bad against everything else, just that Excadrill is not strong against them.  If more of the metagame was [F] Weak, it likely would be one of our top decks.  If everyone could afford to run at least one Bellelba & Brycen-Man, Excadrill decks would barely qualify as a “fun” deck.  It is a card of extremes in that sense.

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