Gyarados ex
Gyarados ex

Gyarados ex – Scarlet & Violet

Date Reviewed:  May 17, 2023

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 2.0
Expanded: 2.0
Limited: 2.5

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

Reviews Below:

vince avatar

Gyarados-ex (Scarlet & Violet 45/198) splashes into the meta today. A Stage 1 Water-type with 300 HP, Lightning Weakness, and a retreat cost of CCCC, it has two attacks. Waterfall costs WWW for 100 damage while Tyrannical Tail costs WWWCC for 180 damage plus 180 more if the opponent’s Active Pokemon already has damage counters on it.

So, this is one of the few cards that has another feature on the upper side of the card in a similar manner to Ancient Traits from a certain bygone era. Whereas Pokemon terastallizes to become a different type than its original type in the main games, the TCG version…is different. It only protects itself from damage while on the bench, which I guess is better than nothing. It’s just that all the other cards with the “Tera” mechanic have the same Bench protection effect, which makes it uninspiring, even more so on its attacks. Waterfall might be cheaper, but if you can afford to use Tryannical Tail, then there’s no point in using Waterfall. Tryannical Tail can be workable because there are ways to put damage counters on the board such as Hawlucha. And you can use Boss’s Orders to bring that Pokemon you’ve just damaged via Hawlucha and deal 360 damage, which is enough to OHKO anything in the game…

…but that attack is very expensive! I don’t recall if there’s any way to quickly accelerate Water energies other than having all four Quaquavals in play. And doing so means you might run out of bench space. Maybe three Quaquaval and Double Turbo Energy might suffice, but that’s still a lot to go through. It might have some difficulty doing well in Standard due to expensive attack costs, but Expanded adds in a couple more water-based support. Blastoise (BW Boundaries Crossed 31/149) or Frosmoth (Sword & Shield 64/202) provides unlimited Water energies while Aqua Patch also accelerates one Water Energy from the discard pile onto your benched water Pokemon. While there’s more support but in Expanded, there’s also more counters. For Limited, if you pulled one, try to make the most of it because currently all Magikarp cards have 30 HP, so it won’t last long of the field.


Standard: 2/5
Expanded: 2/5
Limited: 2.5/5

Gyarados-ex can achieve OHKOs, but needing five energies is a lot. As long as there’s some support for accelerating multiple energies, then it might be competitive to some extent.

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