Mantyke – Battle Styles
Date Reviewed: May 13, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Say hello to another pre-evolution with just one card in the actual TCG: Mantyke (Diamond & Pearl 55/130)! If you want to get technical there are two different Japanese-exclusive promos both named Samiya’s Mantyke. We aren’t reviewing them; a quick glance will tell you that they’re filler. How about the actual Mantyke? It was a Basic, [W] type Pokémon with 40 HP, [L] Weakness+10, [F] Resistance -20, Retreat Cost [C], the “Baby Evolution” Poké-Power, and the attack “Call for Friends”. The former may lets you effectively evolve Mantyke into Mantine, even though both are Basic Pokémon. Matine will then be treated as an evolved Pokémon. Call for Friends has no Energy cost, and lets you fetch a Basic [W] Pokémon from your deck, then add it to your hand.
I don’t remember Mantyke seeing play back when it was Standard-legal. Its HP was dangerously low, even back then, and even though it doesn’t get Evolutions, the Basic it fetches goes to your hand. So, even though it can snag that Pokémon without costing you Energy, it can’t save you from Bench Out is Mantyke is your only Pokémon. It is possible Mantyke did see competitive success, and I was just unaware. However, I didn’t see it in any World Championship decks from its time Standard-legal, and the one Mantine meant to work with it – Mantine (DP – Mysterious Treasures 29/123) – just gets a free Retreat out of the deal. The Poké-Body through which it happens doesn’t even zero out the Retreat Cost, though it does reduce it by [CC] when the printed cost is only [C].
- Standard: N/A
- Expanded: N/A
Mantyke, we hardly knew ye. Maybe you’ll get a card again someday.
This week’s Throwback is similar to Bonsly such that there’s only one Mantyke card in the entire Pokémon TCG, and that it is also in the Diamond & Pearl set. There is another Mantyke card, but it is unreleased and this card is inside another movie pack similar to Bonsly, except that this time, Mantyke is from Pokémon Ranger and the Temple of the Sea.
Again, similar to Bonsly, Mantyke also has the Baby Evolution Poké-Power, which lets you put any Mantine card (even though it is a Basic Pokémon) and heal all damage from it. It also has a free attack; Call for Friends lets you search your deck for a Basic water Pokemon and put it onto your hand. Since Mantine is also a Basic water type, it can be fetched via Call for Friends and you can evolve it next turn. There’s not many Mantine cards at the time. I guess there’s Delta Mantine from EX Crystal Guardians, one from DP Mysterious Treasures, and one from HGSS. The one from DP Mysterious Treasures is incredibly useful, as its Poké-Body Jumbo Fin states that if Mantyke is anywhere under Mantine, your Water Pokémon’s retreat cost is reduced by two. This could be enough for any water Pokemon with CC or less retreat for free while the others pay less energy to retreat.
If it were still legal, I don’t think any of the recent Mantine cards would amount to anything, which means that the DP Mysterious Treasures is the clear winner of being the most useful Mantine cards out there. In its time, I might give it a 3 out of 5 in the older “Modified” format. One day, like Bonsly, hopefully the designers make another Pokémon like this.
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