Houndstone – Scarlet & Violet
Date Reviewed: May 28, 2023
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Hopefully Houndstone (Scarlet & Violet 106/198) would be easier to review as I have been somewhat busy from the past few days. A Stage 1 Psychic type with 140 HP, Darkness Weakness, Fighting Resistance, and a Retreat Cost of CCC, it only has one attack. Last Respects costs PP for 80 damage plus 10 more damage for each Psychic Pokemon in your discard pile.
This attack kind of reminds me of a much older card: Flareon (BW Plasma Freeze 121/116) and Vespiquen (XY Ancient Origins 10/98). Its Vengeance/Bee Revenge attack does a similar thing, albeit weaker but splashable attack cost of CC AND also counts for all Pokemon in your discard pile instead of just Psychic types. Houndstone’s range seems limited, but if there’s any good Psychic-type Pokemon in the Standard format that can be used as fodder while somewhat supporting your deck or Pokemon, then maybe you might get away with running a deck with just Psychic Pokemon. However, the multiplier is far too small. This kind of attack would have worked for Plasma Flareon because the max printed HP score at the time was 250 via Wailord-EX (XY Primal Clash 38/160), and you’ll only need 23 Pokemon in the discard pile to secure the OHKO. With Silver Bangle to let Flareon/Vespiquen deal 30 extra damage, then you’ll need just 20 Pokemon in the discard pile to OHKO anything before factoring in defensive buffs such as Eviolite or Hard Charm. For Houndstone, you’re going to need to have 26 Pokemon in your discard pile, and I don’t think your deck has room to contain Pokemon. At least 26 Pokemon for fodder plus 4-4 Houndstone line means you’re already gone through over half of your deck. Let’s see what we can work with.
We’ve got some decent to great Psychic types over the years. Although there aren’t any showings in Limitless, I did stumble across another web site that posts submitted deck ideas and deck list. I noticed there’s the Gardevoir line, both the ex-version and even a baseline Gardevoir card. Both Kirlia and Gardevoir in Silver Tempest has the Refinement ability, which lets you discard a card from your hand in order to draw 2 cards, and I think it might help fuel up Last Respect’s damage output if you keep discarding Psychic Pokemon. Gardevoir-ex provides energy acceleration, which is definitely needed as Last Respects costs PP, so the ability and a manual attachment will help meet the cost while taking 20 damage in the process. Mew from Celebrations is there to fetch for item cards. Finally, Mewtwo VUNION is also another discard fodder which may occasionally be played. That deck posted in pokemoncard.io contains 29 Pokemon, so maybe a solid 2HKO but way out of reach for OHKOs. It also doesn’t help that the Gardevoir line may stay in play for a while instead of being discarded/OHKOed as soon as one hoped, as that also keeps Last Respects from dealing as much damage as it could.
Rambling aside, I think Houndstone would see some play because it re-introduces a familiar effect from past cards. The older reviews of Flareon and Vespiquen were favorable, but that’s before Karen (XY Black Star Promo 177) came into the equation. Now that she’s already here in Expanded, it’ll be incredibly hard to certain attackers that need to keep several other Pokemon in the discard pile, only to get shuffled back into the deck. Mega Gardevoir-EX’s Despair Ray, Night March, etc. will be stopped cold. There isn’t anything like that in Standard, so Houndstone can comfortably have some Psychic Pokemon in the discard pile to achieve more damage.
We would love more volunteers to help us with our Card of the Day reviews. If you want to share your ideas on cards with other fans, feel free to drop us an email. We’d be happy to link back to your blog / YouTube Channel / etc. 😉Click here to read our Pokémon Card of the Day Archive. We have reviewed more than 4700 Pokemon cards over the last 23 + years!