– Vivid Voltage
November 29, 2020
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
I guess there’s another method of gaining access to other attacks from its previous Evolution, even though there aren’t many attacks that caught my eye.
Memory Capsule is a Pokemon Tool card which lets you use any attacks from its previous Evolution. This can be useful if there’s certain attacks that you want to use as long as you meet the attack cost of that particular attack. I recall there are some good attacks from Pokemon-V that can evolve such as Aegislash-V (that wants to keep using Sonic Edge) or older mechanics in Expanded like Mega Evolutions that wants access to older attacks. This is your only method in Standard, though Expanded has couple more methods (with different drawbacks):
-Shrine of Memories from XY Primal Clash: This is a Stadium card which lets you gain access to older attacks. Because it is a Stadium card, however, it may be replaced/discarded by another Stadium card or Field Blower.
-Shining Celebi and/or Celebi-EX from BW Boundaries Crossed: Their Time Recall ability also lets you access older attacks. But because it is an ability, it can be shut down by Silent Lab (Power Plant against Celebi-EX), Garbodor’s Garbotoxin, and/or Alolan Muk’s Power of Alchemy.
-Memory Energy from SM Lost Thunder: This is a Special Energy card which also lets you gain access to older attacks, but it can be removed by Enhanced Hammer and there are certain effects that can punish your Pokemon just for having Special Energy cards in play.
So, that’s pretty much the gist of this Pokemon Tool card. Very rarely you would want access to older attacks, but it also takes up your slot to attach different Pokemon Tool cards that could even be more beneficial than Memory Capsule. Not a useless card per se, but there’s not many applications where a certain deck will need older attacks. Additionally, there are other cards that interact with Memory Capsule, and they are the Eeveelutions, all three are from that same expansion!
-Vaporeon (SS Vivid Voltage 30/180)
All three have abilities that shut down all Pokemon’s abilities of a specific type (both yours & your opponent) as long as they have a Memory Capsule attached to it. Vaporeon shuts down abilities from Fire Pokemon; Jolteon shuts down abilities from Water Pokemon; and Flareon shuts down abilities from Grass Pokemon. While the ability to lock down some of their options of your opponent can be game-changing, it is also pretty specific to who it can mess with. I don’t think those Eeveelutions can remain useful in a tournament setting where you’re pretty much stuck with the deck you are using. If the opponent doesn’t use a certain type, then those are useless cards. Not to mention that those Eeveelutions are facing massive competition in Expanded against other Eeveelutions that are just as useful in their own right. Triple Effect Eeveelutions from XY Ancient Origins, GX versions of Eeveelutions, and even useful Eeveelutions from SM Cosmic Eclipse are competeting for deck space. Even Garbodor’s Garbotoxin wasn’t always in every single deck ruining their days. If they are facing an opponent who doesn’t use abilities, then Garbodor is just as useless.
I realized that I also gave a mini-review of the Eeveelutions, but those are the cards that Memory Energy can interact with. Even without many applications to see regarding its usefulness, this is another card not to forget about either. Expanded has Memory Capsule compete with Shrine of Memories, Celebi’s Time Recall, and/or Memory Energy, but even those cards don’t last forever on the field as you can benefit from those cards for one turn (at most), mostly any of those four methods can be removed eventually.
Memory Capsule (SW – Vivid Voltage 155/185, 202/185) is the latest in a long line of tricks that let you use attacks from a lower Stage of evolution. In this case, Memory Capsule is a Pokémon Tool, so anything that applies to Trainers (in general), or Item cards, will also affect it. Plus, of course, Tool-specific effects, both helpful and hurtful. A Pokémon using up its precious Tool slot on Memory Capsule can use the attacks printed on its previous Evolutions. You still have to meet the printed Energy requirements, as well as anything else required in order to use the attack. This isn’t a new effect, and its… decent.
We just lost Memory Energy to rotation, and I don’t remember any majorly successful decks using it, similar past cards have proven useful in the past. As such, seems like it probably will prove useful here, though there’s no guarantee. In fact, I don’t recall any major decks making good use of the previous two options for this trick: Memory Energy and Shining Celebi. Could just be a lapse on my part, could mean nothing ever lived up to potential it had. It can be tricky; lower Stages usually have weaker attacks, not just in terms of effects or damage output, but in terms of both relative to Energy costs.
There’s another use for Memory Capsule: Flareon (SW – Vivid Voltage 026/185), Jolteon (SW – Vivid Voltage 47/185), Vaporeaon (SW – Vivid Voltage 30/185) each has an Ability which only works while Memory Capsule is attached to itself. While working, their Abilities shut down the Abilities of Grass Pokémon, Water Pokémon, and Fire Pokémon, respectively. Abilities shut down for both players’ Pokémon. For example, if you put both Jolteon and Vaporeon into play, each with a Memory Capsule, your Jolteon’s Ability will stop your Vaporeon’s Ability from working. We’ll review these Eeveelutions soon enough, and can give full details then, but it is nice that Memory Capsule has an addition use.
In the Expanded Format, Memory Capsule has a lot of competition, though all of it is a bit different. All share the effect of Memory Capsule, but other aspects of the cards distinguish them.
Celebi-EX is almost certainly obsolete, due to Shining Celebi. Unless there’s some effect that requires being a Pokémon-EX, or somehow 110 HP worth two Prizes is preferable to 70 worth one. Apart from Celebi-EX, then it is about what you’re worried about your opponent countering, as well as what you can afford to be using for this effect. As stated, Memory Capsule means you cannot use a different Tool (at least, not at the same time) and is vulnerable to anti-Trainer, anti-Item, and anti-Tool effects.. Shining Celebi eats up a Bench slot and is vulnerable to anti-Ability effects, or just getting KO’d. Shrine of Punishment means you cannot use another Stadium at the exact same time. Memory Energy is vulnerable to anti-Energy and anti-Special Energy effects, and uses up an Energy attachment for the turn.
I’m not sure if Memory Capsule is the best option for any of the older decks that have used “remembering” the attacks from lower Stages at least somewhat successfully before, but at least you have another option. As for the Limited Format, here it can sometimes be handy simply because Evolutions are more useful but sometimes you need less expensive attacks, even if they are weaker. If you manage to pull Donphan (SW – Vivid Voltage 087/185; SW – Black Star Promos SWSH067) and Phanpy (SW – Vivid Voltage 086/185), you’ll have a pretty powerful combo. Well, unless your opponent gets a lucky KO before you can use Phanpy’s “Strikes Back” attack for big damage! You need to have at least five damage counters on Donphan to do more damage than it’s own attacks, however.
Memory Capsule is one of those cards with a lot of potential, but that potential may never be realized. Still, I’d rather have it exist than not. I had it as my 18th-Place pick, just due to that potential.
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