Opal – Vivid Voltage
Date Reviewed: January 30, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Apologies dear readers; an rough draft that didn’t even have the correct card scan, let alone part of a review, went live instead of the final version. In a weird way, perhaps that is reflective of today’s subject: Opal (SW – Vivid Voltage 158/185, 184/185, 197/185). This Trainer-Supporter has you flip two coins, and for each heads, you get to search your deck for a card and add it to your hand. What do tails get you? Nothing. Of course, three out of four outcomes means you got to search your deck for at least one card. The odds of Opal failing to do anything are the same as being able to search out any two cards, so that’s fair, right?
I haven’t tested Opal, but I would assume “no”. None of the four decks from the Players Cup II Global Finals included Opal. None of the 16 decks (four from each region) at the Players Cup II Regional Finals included Opal. Out of the 41 decks listed from the top 123 of the Champions League that was held in Yokohama back on October 3rd of 2020 bothered with even a single copy of Opal. I think the reason is pretty simple; even when it is a one-in-four chance, decks rarely can afford to waste a Supporter doing nothing. Rarely? I’m allowing that there is some deck where getting the exact two cards you need via Supporter is worth the risk… possibly because it includes enough supplemental non-Supporter draw to keep your deck from grinding to a halt on a “double tails”.
The effect of Opal would be broken as a Trainer-Item, a Stadium, and probably even as a coming-into-play Ability on a Basic Pokémon V. As your Supporter for the turn, though, I just don’t think any deck can afford the risk. Technically, however, Opal does work in any deck; she just doesn’t work well enough to be worth the risk. In Expanded, she faces more competition, but also has access to the kind of support where a single copy of her could be run and still played relatively reliably early game. When I say “relatively reliably”, I am talking about getting her into your hand to use her, not about the coin flips.
Wait, didn’t I say not to use Opal? Opal is one of those cards that defies the scoring system we use here. You shouldn’t use her but if you insist, she’s a functional card. I just believe you’ll lose more games than you’ll win because of burning your Supporter on a coin toss. If it now sounds like I’m being too hard on Opal, think of Red’s Challenge. I predicted that thing would be a good card, maybe even a staple and… hardly any successful competitive play. Computer Search as a Supporter, with a reasonable two-card discard cost, and that wasn’t enough. Half the time? Opal is just Red’s Challenge sans the discard cost.
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