Meowstic – Battle Styles
Date Reviewed: May 4, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Meowstic (SW – Battle Styles 061/163) is a baseline Pokémon: no Rule Box, no extra Prizes taken, etc. There also are no other specialty mechanics, like a region in the name or Battle Style. Meowstic is a Psychic type; might come in handy in Expanded, but [P] support is lacking in Standard, and (peeking ahead) Meowstic doens’t hit hard enough to really exploit [P] Weakness. Being a Stage 1 is “okay”; being a Basic would likely be better, but Stage 1 Pokémon are still competitively viable. 90 HP means Meowstic is an easy OHKO, and also means the [D] Weakness and [F] Resistance aren’t going to matter most of the time. The Retreat Cost of [C] is good, though.
Meowstic’s only attack is filler, so I’m just getting it out of the way first; [PC] for “Psychic Sphere” to do 50 damage. It isn’t worth the Energy unless you’re very desperate. Still, at least it isn’t too overpriced, and gives you a simple, straightforward attack. “Ear Moves” is the Ability on Meowstic, and once during your turn, it lets you move a damage counter from one of your Pokémon to one of your opponent’s (your choice which Pokémon in both cases). This isn’t a lot, but it means a tiny bit of healing plus a bit of bonus damage each turn. At least, for each Meowstic you have in play and for each damage counter you have to move. If all of your stuff is damage free, you Ear Moves won’t work.
Ear Moves is why Meowstic isn’t filler. This is very similar to the “Shadow Ear” Ability found on Meowstic-EX. Meowstic-EX had to be your Active to move a damage counter from one of your Pokémon to one of your opponent’s Pokémon. It was a 160 HP Basic Pokémon-EX, with [P] Weakness, no Resistance, Retreat Cost [C], and the attack “Mind Shock”. Mind Shock is still pretty much filler: [PC] to do 60 damage, and it doesn’t apply Weakness or Resistance. 160 HP on a two-Prize Pokémon wasn’t as bad back when Meowstic-EX saw a tiny bit of competitive success, but it still was pretty poor and a likely OHKO. Decks just made sure Meowstic-EX could easily get into and out of the Active spot to do its thing.
Back to today’s Meowstic, it is a lot easier to stack than with Meowstic, and it can really do wonders under the right circumstances. At the same time you’re buying an extra turn of “life” for your Pokémon, you’re ideally shaving off a turn of existence for your opponent’s Pokémon. There may also be effects you want to trigger or avoid triggering. None of the Espurr cards are really worthwhile; I guess Espurr (SM – Unbroken Bonds 79/214) if you cram this line into a Caturday deck. This is actually a problem, because as fantastic as Ear Moves can be, it isn’t enough to justify Meowstic in a lot of decks. If you really need healing, Meowstic in triplicate only provides as much as a copy of Potion.
Likewise, if you just want to drop an extra damage counter for a key OHKO, just rely on Galarian Zigzagoon (Sword & Shield 117/202; Shining Vault 078/SV122). Half the space per copy (more or less), and don’t have to worry about having damage counters on your side of the field to move; you just get to place one. Ear Moves is reusable, and that can be powerful… but it can also go to waste. Even when you have damage counters to move, it doesn’t really matter if your Pokémon aren’t staying alive an extra turn, your opponent’s Pokémon aren’t being KO’d a turn sooner, or you’re triggering effects. A lot of the time, you won’t be doing any of these.
- Standard: 2/5
- Expanded: 2/5
Ear Moves is good, but I don’t have a proven use for it yet. As such, Meowstic scores two-out-of-five in both Standard and Expanded. There’s a real chance we’ll find a great partner for this kitty, but there’s also a chance it won’t be before it rotates, or before something even better comes along and replaces it.
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