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The new Team Plasma cards, released in BW: Plasma Storm, function almost identically to their non-affiliated counterparts except for when an effect references Team Plasma card. Those exceptions are quite relevant when evaluating any Team Plasma card, so this article will seek to provide a reference for what Team Plasma cards we have and how they interact with the others. These are not reviews, however, just a “crib sheet” for deck design and reading reviews (like my Card of the Day articles).
The following is a list of the Team Plasma cards released in BW: Plasma Storm.
This is a total of 35 different cards (38 if you insist on counting Full Arts) that can access Team Plasma support, however most do not actually reference Team Plasma cards themselves. As this article is not about reviewing cards but establishing how this family of cards supports each other, the majority of cards that don’t reference other Team Plasma cards need only be known, not explored.
Team Plasma Supporting Cards
Below I will list cards by name and number that are not only Team Plasma cards, but somehow support the theme. Technically all Team Plasma cards do this simply by existing, but those that truly just have their affiliation and no other ties are beyond the scope of this article.
The following Team Plasma cards require no specific support, though how a deck is built can make them more or less effective. Remember that this is not an endorsement of any such cards, and is actually a reference source for use when attempting to evaluate Team Plasma cards in general, especially those that work better when used alongside other Team Plasma cards.
Watchog (112/135): A Stage 1, Colorless-Type Pokémon with 90 HP, Fighting Weakness, no Resistance, and a Retreat score of one. The attacks feature all Colorless Energy requirements, allowing a player to work this card into a variety of decks. For (C) its first attack discards a card from the opponent’s hand while for (CC) the second attack hits for 30 points of damage or 50 if you get “heads” on a required coin flip.
Watchog (113/135): A Stage 1, Colorless-Type Pokémon with 90 HP, Fighting Weakness, no Resistance, and a Retreat score of one. The attacks feature all Colorless Energy requirements, allowing a player to work this card into a variety of decks. For (CC) the first attack does 20 points of damage plus 10 more points of damage per damage counter on the Defending Pokémon. For (CCC) it can also hit for a flat 60 points of damage.
Bouffalant (114/135): A Basic, Colorless-Type Pokémon with 100 HP, Fighting Weakness, no Resistance, and a Retreat score of two. For (C), its first attack discards a Pokémon Tool from the Defending Pokémon. For (CCCC) its second attack hits for a flat 70 points of damage.
Colress: A Team Plasma Supporter with a general effect: shuffle your hand into your deck and then draw a number of cards equal to the number of Benched Pokémon. To be clear, that is the sum total of both your Bench and your opponent’s Bench. This gives the card a draw range from 0-10.
Hypnotoxic Laser: An Item with a general effect: the Defending Pokémon is Poisoned and you flip a coin; if “heads” the Defending Pokémon is also Asleep.
Plasma Energy: A Special Energy card that provides (C) and has no other effects.
Requires Other (Non-Specific) Team Plasma Cards
The following Team Plasma cards require no specific Team Plasma cards, just Team Plasma cards in general to be used or at least to be used fully.
Skarmory: A Basic, Metal-Type Pokémon with 90 HP, Fire Weakness, Psychic Resistance, and a Retreat score of (C). Its first attack allows you to discard a Team Plasma card in order to draw three cards at a cost of (C). Its second attack does not reference Team Plasma cards: it requires (MMC) and does 40 points of damage while reducing the damage done to it by 20 points after Weakness and Resistance.
Snorlax: A Basic, Colorless-Type Pokémon with 130 HP, Fighting Weakness, no Resistance, and a Retreat score of four. It has a non-Team Plasma Related Ability that prevents the Defending Pokémon from manually retreating (effects that change out Pokémon through other means are unaffected). For the massive cost of (CCCCC), it has an attack that hits for 30 times the number of Plasma Pokémon you have in play. This would include counting itself, so it can hit for anywhere from 30 to 180 points of damage.
Team Plasma Grunt: A Supporter that can do nothing without another Team Plasma card to discard for it. Upon such a discard, it draws four cards.
Requires Plasma Energy
The following Team Plasma cards require Plasma Energy to access their full potential, or possibly to have any effect at all.
Moltres EX: A Basic, Fire-Type Pokémon-EX with 170 HP, Water Weakness, Fighting Resistance and a Retreat score of one; it has two attacks. The first requires (RC) and does 30 points of damage, plus if you get “heads” on a required coin toss, it discards an Energy from the Defending Pokémon. The second attack requires (RRCC) to use and hits for 80 points of damage, unless you have at least one Plasma Energy attached to it. If you do, it triggers an additional +40 points of damage as per the attack’s effect text, for a total of 120.
Articuno EX: A Basic, Water-Type Pokémon-EX with 170 HP, Metal Weakness, Fighting Resistance and a Retreat score of one; it has two attacks. The first requires (WCC) and does 60 points of damage to the Defending Pokémon plus 10 points of damage to each of your opponent’s Benched Pokémon. The second attack requires (WWCC) to use and hits for 80 points of damage, plus it has a Plasma Energy triggered effect. If Articuno EX has any Plasma Energy attached to it, the attack Paralyzes the Defending Pokémon.
Zapdos EX: A Basic, Lightning-Type Pokémon-EX with 170 HP, Lightning Weakness, Fighting Resistance and a Retreat score of one; it has two attacks. The first requires (LC) and does 30 points of damage plus has a coin flip dependant effect. If you get “heads” on the required coin toss, all effects of attacks, including damage, done to it are prevented until the end of your opponent’s next turn. The second attack requires (LLCC) to use and hits for 80 points of damage, unless you have at least one Plasma Energy attached to it. If you do, it triggers an additional +40 points of damage as per the attack’s effect text, for a total of 120.
Lugia EX: A Basic, Colorless-Type Pokémon-EX with 180 HP, Lightning Weakness, Fighting Resistance, and a Retreat score of two. It has one Ability and one attack. The Ability triggers when an opponent’s Pokémon is KOed through damage from an attack by this Pokémon (that is, Lugia EX); the effect then allows you to draw an additional Prize over what you would normally receive. The card’s only one attack costs (CCCC) and hits for 120 points of damage, but it requires you discard a Plasma Energy; if you cannot discard a Plasma Energy, the attack does nothing.
Colress Machine: An Item that exists only to search your deck for a Plasma Energy and attach it to one of your Team Plasma Pokémon in play.
Plasma Frigate: Plasma Frigate negates the Weakness of any and all Pokémon that have a Plasma Energy attached.
There are 35 unique Team Plasma cards with the release of BW: Plasma Storm, and the nature of such themed support means you need an idea of all of them to properly evaluate any single one of them. Of the 35, 26 make no special reference to other Team Plasma cards, benefiting from their affiliation to Team Plasma in access to more specific Team Plasma support and only supplying their own unique characteristics. Six of these 25 have such general requirements for play that virtually any deck could include them, which is very important to consider when evaluating those effects that do require the presence of any other Team Plasma cards.
Three of the remaining nine cards have effects that either require any Team Plasma card or any Team Plasma Pokémon; these cards benefit greatly from cards like the previous six that can be worked in without adding even more unique demands. The remaining six cards specifically require Plasma Energy for at least one of their effects, making them somewhat deck specific. With this in mind, we get a better idea of how significant a clause like “Discard a Team Plasma” card truly is, and what tricks a Team Plasma Pokémon in general can access.
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