– Ultra Prism
August 5, 2020
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
The 3rd-best card lost to this year’s rotation is Oranguru (SM – Ultra Prism 114/156). Oranguru is a bog standard Pokémon: worth a single Prize, no specialty mechanics, etc. This is a Colorless typing doesn’t really hurt or help and it’s a Basic, making it easy to run. 120 HP means a probable OHKO when Active, but not especially fragile. [F] Weakness is bad when it shows up. No Resistance is typical. A Retreat Cost of [CC] low enough you can probably pay it but high enough you’ll wish you didn’t have to. It has two attacks, the second of which is “Profound Knowledge” for [CCC], which does 60 damage and Confuses your opponent’s Active. It is a filler attack that is badly overpriced but sometimes you’ll just need 60 and/or Confusion, and the price is barely within reason.
“Resource Management” is what makes Oranguru. This attack costs [C] and has you bottom-deck three cards from your discard pile. When we first looked at it, I actually didn’t. I missed that review, but but Vince and 21times saw greatness. Then we looked at it again, as the 7th-best card of 2018, and I was able to explain how I totally slept on this card. Simply put, Oranguru is the… well… guru of control decks. Sometimes it is the front-and-center main attacker, other times it just comes in to recycle some resources when it is safe, and gets out of the way for the previous combo to resolve. I mean, if you’ve slammed your opponent with enough disruption, Oranguru has a solid chance of surviving while up front for either strategy.
Currently, it’s doing its thing in Cinccino Control decks, though it has worked with many other Pokémon over the years… and that’s why I assume it would continue to work with them were it staying. The most recent bans might hurt it, but – if you hadn’t heard – they’re basically re-releasing the banned cards with reworked effects, to avoid the broken combo/deck that got them banned in the first place. What about Oranguru in Expanded? It is a little harder to say, because we don’t have any recent tournaments, but the closest (from back in February) still sees it being played. It does have to compete with some older options, like Sableye (BW – Dark Explorers 62/108), but it still seems to have at least a prominent niche.
For the Limited Format, unless you’re running a Mulligan deck, you should include Oranguru. It hurts more if you have to “sacrifice it”, recycling cards while your opponent KO’s it, due to players starting with four Prizes (not six). It also helps more, as recycling effects is far more rare, and being a 120 HP, single-Prize Basic that can do 60 (plus Confusion) for three is actually pretty good here.
Oranguru just barely earns that four-out-of-five, as I think its use has been on the decline in Standard, but it should remain a solid three-out-of-five in Expanded. It technically works for any deck, but Oranguru will only dominate in certain decks at certain times. Yes, this sounds a lot like how I’ve described many cards lately. Remember, this is one that’s over two-years-old: most cards this age have been left in the dust by power creep!
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