– Shining Legends
January 10, 2018
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Of course we need to have Mewtwo on the GX library!
We have Mewtwo EX cards that saw lots of play in the past: X Ball, Shatter Shot & Damage Change, Psychic Infinity, Vanishing Strike. But does this Mewtwo join the group of being insanely playable like others?
It does have 190 HP, which is bulkier than previous EX versions of itself. Full Burst is a improved Shatter Shot, doing 30 damage for every energy attached to this Pokémon (and not limited to just P energy). Super Absorption does 60 damage for PC and heals 30 damage from itself (does similar to Zygarde EX’s Cell Storm). Psystrike GX does 200 for PPP and bypasses effects from the Defending Pokémon.
I don’t think Mewtwo GX would be able to pull off in competitive play. Full Burst can reach OHKO levels if you load up tons of Energy on this Pokémon, but is at risk of being KOed and losing resources. Mewtwo may need seven energies plus Choice Band to OHKO Gardevoir GX, but Gardevoir can return fire with just one Energy to OHKO Mewtwo GX. The damage output of Super Absorption seems lacking, and so is Psystrike (for an once per game attack, it needs to OHKO stuff). Probably the only place it’ll shine is in Limited.
It was likely only a matter of time before Mewtwo, star of the Pokemon-EX treatment with 3 copies to his name, would get a GX version of himself to match. Is it as good as the EX counterparts? Or at least as good as the later versions, since its extremely difficult to compare to the Mewtwo-EX?
His first attack makes a good attempt at it at least. Full Burst costs 1 Psychic Energy and does 30 damage based on how much Energy is attached to Mewtwo-GX. At first, it seems like it’d be a stronger and cheaper version of X Ball, but since it lacks the crucial element of counting Energy on BOTH Active Pokemon, it falls incredibly short. At the most, this move could only do as much as 90 damage if Mewtwo-GX has all the Energy he needs to use all of his attacks, and while for 1 Energy that’s pretty good, it’s a little underwhelming for something called “Full Burst” to not be blasting fully.
Super Absorption comes out as an even bigger disappointment, being a 2-for-60 move that heals for 30. Why is such a weak move on a Pokemon-GX? These guys are supposed to be the new iterations of the legendary EX Pokemon, we don’t need them being this weak. It’s not that the trade-off in Energy to damage is necessarily bad, although there are stronger moves that cost about as much if not less, but the biggest drawback to having an attack like this is that it’s Mewtwo-GX’s only means of consistent damage. Full Burst at 2 Energy would also be dealing 60 damage, but it doesn’t heal, which makes Super Absorption look like it’s better when it’s just mediocre at best.
And then we get to his GX Attack. Psystrike-GX does 3-for-200 and is completely unaffected by ANY effects on the opponent’s Active Pokemon. That’s an amazing move that would’ve suited Mewtwo-GX even as a regular attack, adding on a possible setback like discarding Energy or it could have even been a 3-for-100 move that did the same thing. As it is, a GX move that you can only use one of those per game? It’s gonna be good once per game. It’ll likely KO anything it hits, short of a Mega-EX or Stage 2 GX after boosting it up, so it’s at least a good finisher.
But then you’re just saving your GX attack towards the end and wagering on it to come from Mewtwo-GX. If you don’t finish the game on this move, you’re not using Mewtwo-GX for much else otherwise.
Standard: 2.5/5 (a fantastic finisher does not by itself a good Pokemon make)
Expanded: 2/5 (even Mega-EX, who were dedicated to having only one big finishing type of move, had to have decks built around them to even work)
Limited: 4/5 (having one good attack and two bad ones means you’re mainly Limited fuel)
Arora Notealus: Mewtwo’s first foray into the GX world is…not that impressive, in all honesty. It’s like they’ve been gradually powering down Mewtwo in his last EX/GX treatments, like they made him too much in Next Destinies and have been scaling him back for one reason or another in subsequent iterations. It’s a bit disappointing, considering we’re looking at what is the self-proclaimed “strongest” Pokemon in the world.
Side Reviews: Mismagius – Chaos Wheel makes its return in a weaker 1-for-30 form but keeping the lock on. The main thing I see being a problem is having Mismagius using Chaos Wheel while having something else to lock down other cards from being played as well, as was key to Giratina-EX’s own Chaos Wheel working out. Dark Arts is a nice combination piece, using 3 Energy to do 20 damage per card in the opponent’s hand, ideally kept there by Chaos Wheel, but ultimately it’s not worth it to drop the lock in order to do a decent amount of damage.
Top 10 of the Year
#10 Garbodor – Garbodor feels like he ended up lower on the ultimate list, I would’ve sorted him out to be a bit higher myself. Though he has become a regular part of the game and just has been built around, when he initially came out he was format-defining, with his Trashalanche move proving to be detrimental late game against what were a plethora of Item-heavy decks in that time frame. Perhaps it’s because we’ve had a few months to work around it that he’s not as effective as he was, but he still has had a major impact on the game, and I’d imagine he’ll still have some level of influence over the next couple of years.
#9 Acerola – One of the most useful Supporters to come out in the Sun&Moon era, Acerola offers players the ability to recuperate their resources while denying KOs. It’s no surprise to see it make the cut on this list, and I’d imagine that the ability to retrieve any Pokemon with damage on them will remain very useful for the time being. There’s at least no real reason to think that Acerola will fall out of popularity any time soon.
Next Time: Take a trip back to another place, where the crazy was crazier than crazy…
Mewtwo-GX was printed four times in one set as Shining Legends 39/73, 72/73, 76/73, and 78/73). Were the designers telling us something, or is it just because Mewtwo is a popular Pokémon in general? Being a Basic is the best, but doesn’t guarantee it’ll be worth running. The 190 HP puts it at the higher end of typical Basic Pokémon-EX/GX, but still well shy of the maximum set by Wailord-EX, but it has the Psychic Weakness that means it has to fear Garbodor (SM – Guardians Rising 51/145), many Night Marchers, and a decent amount of other established attackers. No Resistance is the worst and a Retreat Cost of [CC] is typical, but what will make or break this card are its three attacks: “Full Burst” for [P], “Super Absorption” for [PC], and “Psystrike-GX” for [PPP].
Full Burst does 30 damage per [P] attached to Mewtwo-GX itself; scaling attacks are great when you’ve got a good source of Energy but even though the damage-to-Energy ratio remains the same, the difficulty of supplying that Energy increases and so it still ends up being a diminishing return. Currently, there is no really way to load [PPPPPP] or more Energy onto Mewtwo-GX quickly, easily, and/or reliably, and that’s what you need for Full Burst to deliver OHKO’s against a decent chunk of the metagame. Super Absorption does 60 damage while healing 30 from Mewtwo-GX and it is a similar thing; for the Energy, its okay but not great. The 190 HP is important to this, because any smaller and it might not make enough of a difference. Psystrike-GX does 200 damage while ignoring all effects on the opponent’s Active Pokémon; remember, Weakness/Resistance aren’t considered effects but game mechanics, and that there’s a decent chunk of Pokémon that remain outside of OHKO range even with a Choice Band attached. Why am I hung up on that? The attack costs [PPP] and eats up your GX-attack is why; this is the third attack that isn’t bad, but is only somewhat good.
Mewtwo-GX seems pretty mediocre. If [P] Energy focused builds of Metagross-GX rise to prominence, it might have a chance as a TecH attacker, to punch through various protective effects with Psystrike-GX. There may be some hope for it in Expanded due to Dimension Valley and Choice Band or Fighting Fury Belt or Muscle Band. Healing 30 damage from itself while doing 90 versus Pokémon-EX/GX and having 190 HP, 70 versus anything while having 230 HP, or doing 80 versus anything while having 190 HP is nothing to sneer at… at least when it only costs [P] so you can abuse cards like Acerola or Max Potion for additional healing. I’m not coming up with anything better, however… except up course in Limited Format play. While not guaranteed to win you the game, pulling this and building a deck with no other Basic Pokémon (ensuring you open with Mewtwo-GX) means you can just attach and build, healing when you only need 60 damage for a KO and taking your last Prize(s) with Psystrike-GX. Too bad you probably won’t ever get the chance, between how this set was distributed and fact that the most common Mewtwo-GX is still an Ultra Rare.
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