– Guardians Rising
July 12, 2019
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Has a year really passed by? Wow, time goes by so fast, I remember reviewing the remaining XY cards lost to rotation. Now, it’s about looking at Sun & Moon cards lost to rotation! Ultra Prism onwards means five sets will be cut before Worlds: Sun & Moon, Guardians Rising, Burning Shadows, Crimson Invasion, and Shining Legends. So far, my personal top 11 isn’t too far off, almost nailed it except for today’s card, which I should’ve include that.
Field Blower is a card from Guardians Rising, and it has made a name for itself. It lets you discard up to 2 in any combination of Pokémon Tools and/or Stadium cards from either player. The flexibility this card provides is wonderful, and it completely outclassed Tool Scrapper. You can use this in many ways, like getting rid of your opponent’s tools or stadiums to hinder them, or even getting rid of your own tools or stadiums if you no longer need them in play. This could include very specific scenarios like knocking out one of your opponent Pokémon if you remove a tool that boosts HP and it has way low HP that was previously dependent of the tool. You could get rid of your tools to eventually meet the requirement of Roto Motor so that any Rotom with that ability gets to attack for free!
The amount they ran for each deck varies, some run a full four and others didn’t use any. I think it comes down to how often your opponent that you’re facing uses any tools or Stadium at all. While it could be useful if they play those, it could even be a dead card at times. Despite not being labeled as “universal” status, this is a very good effect, and it will be missed in Standard. Few alternatives of tool or Stadium removal that I can think of is Faba, a supporter that affects your opponent’s side by banishing either Special Energy, Tool, or Stadium.
Limited: 4.75/5 (Guardians Rising has Choice Band and 4 other stadiums to remove, assuming your opponent plays those.)
Yeah, I came back for another countdown list. Unfortunately I didn’t assemble one myself this time – you get so caught up with all this work and the like, and you end up without the time to make one. Turns out it’s not so easy to review 500+ cards that are leaving, all while keeping an eye on what’s gotten reprinted to stick around further. Needless to say, even just seeing what ended up on the other lists, I’m SHOCKED at what’s leaving the Standard format, but let’s take a look at some of the most impactful cards to leave the game.
Field Blower is an Item from Guardians Rising that gets rid of up to 2 Tools/Stadiums in play. It’s simple, yet effective, and it’s been a pretty good tech card to have around. I don’t think there’s a whole lot to say about it – it did its job, and it did it well. There’s a pretty good chance that a similar card will come up again in the future, and even while the Field Blower only had so much of an impact compared to other cards on this list, it’s still a pretty good one.
Would it have made it on my list? Maybe, though I don’t think it would end up very high on it. Barely squeezing into the Top 11 makes sense to me, just cause there are some powerhouse cards that are rotating out, and by comparison Field Blower doesn’t have as much oomph to it. I might have had to weight it against cards of a similar caliber like Hala and Aqua Patch, though those work better in specific decks whereas Field Blower can work in any deck, just against a specific type of card.
Field Blower will never cease to amaze me in that a simple leaf blower can be the bane of some deck’s existence – looking at you, Sylvally-GX – and it certainly proved to be powerful in the right situations. It’ll be hard to lose a reliable source of Tool/Stadium removal, but we’ll have to wait and see if something new doesn’t come along to fill the role that Field Blower filled.
Standard: N/A (for me, this would be about a 3/5)
Expanded: 4/5 (I think given the number of good Tools and Stadiums looming around, Field Blower can have that niche tech option here)
Limited: 4/5 (it gets some good practice here against the Stadiums and Tools available)
Arora Notealus: A lot of us reviewed this card favorably when it first came out, and it’s not hard to see why. The game will only add in more Tools and Stadiums, which will make this card more useful as they see more play. It’s one of those options that rises and falls with the meta; if there’s a particularly powerful Tool like Muscle Band or Choice Band, or if there’s a Stadium that sees widespread play like Virbank City Gym, then it makes sense for Field Blower to see play as a countermeasure to it all.
Next Time: Turns out laying the smackdown is about to get smacked down!
Welcome to our countdown of the Top 11 Cards Lost to the 2020 Standard Format Rotation! Quite the mouthful, and if you’re new to the game, you might need further explanation; once per year, the Standard Format “rotates out” the oldest few sets (usually about five), meaning the cards they contain are no longer Standard-legal. The 2020 Standard Format permits cards from SM – Ultra Prism and later sets, the Dragon Majesty and Detective Pikachu mini-sets, and SM – Black Star Promos numbered SM94 and higher. Some cards among the rotated sets are actually still legal because a more recent printing is available (such as Cynthia). This list is looking at the cards we – the CotD crew – thought were the most significant losses this time around, whether because of their past, present, and/or potential future performances. Technically, Expanded also rotates, but it has always rotated zero sets (so far). The 2020 Standard Format goes into effect on August 15 of 2019, meaning it is what the World Championship will use in a little over a month. You can see the official announcement here.
Field Blower (SM – Guardians Rising 125/145, 125a/145, 163/145) is our 11th place pick. This Trainer-Item lets you select up to two Pokémon Tool cards attached to your opponent’s Pokémon, a Tool and a Stadium card in play, and if it were possible to have two in play at once, up to two Stadium cards. Then you discard the selected cards from the field. The strength of many Tool and Stadium cards are how they remain in play, granting their benefits turn after turn. Some are only able to work when triggered, which can include stuff that only matters during your opponent’s turn… which is why Field Blower is especially devastating against such cards. Yes, you’re giving up a card to get rid of (at most) a subclass and a sub-subclass of Trainer, but they also happen to be a widely used subclass and sub-subclass. This is pretty easy to turn into a two-for-one trade, and you’re allowed to use as many Item cards as you wish during your turn. Which is probably why it clocked in at 6th place for 2017 releases and 2nd place from SM – Guardians Rising.
So why aren’t we using four Field Blowers in all our decks? Deck space has long been at a premium in this game. As such, when Field Blower becomes too common a play the natural response is to cut back on how many Stadium and/or Tool cards you run, at which point Field Blower becomes less useful. This continues until Field Blower’s strategic value lowers to the point players run fewer copies of it, possibly skipping it entirely. Sooner or later, general building trends shift or a specific deck rises up, and players start running (or running higher counts of) Field Blower again. We have other cards to deal with Stadiums and/or Tool cards, but nothing as easy to use as Field Blower. I’m torn, as I don’t like cards such as Field Blower because I believe they are a little too good at their job, but I also remember how frustrating it was during the gap between Startling Megaphone’s rotation and the release of Field Blower. Of course, that was specifically due to certain other cards, chief among them being Garbodor (XY – BREAKpoint 57/122).
Barring a surprise re-release or a similar card dropping, for the 2020 Standard Format, we’ll have to make do with Faba, Lysandre Labs, Marshadow (SM – Unbroken Bonds 81/214), and/or your own Stadium cards (as playing your own Stadium discards your opponent’s). Field Blower will remain a solid option for the Expanded Format; while I’m reaching all the way back to the Regional Championship held in Hartford, CT on May 4th, and while many decks skipped it, a good deal included a copy or two (including the 1st-place finisher). The set is old enough you aren’t likely to get the chance to use it for Limited Format play, but if you do, run it; SM – Guardians Rising has four Stadium cards plus Choice Band.
Field Blower was my personal 10th place pick, but I am perfectly fine with it clocking in at 11th place. It is also hard to predict how long before a key combo or entire deck dependent on Tools will arise, but we’ll still feel Field Blower’s loss, I think.
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