Rapid Strike Scroll of Swirls – Battle Styles
Date Reviewed: April 18, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Rapid Strike Scroll of Swirls (SW – Battle Styles 131/163) is…
…wait for it…
…a Rapid Strike card! Yeah, the name makes it obvious, but remember that it is the label in the upper right-hand corner of the card art. Its name is also quite a mouthful, so I’ll just refer to it as Scroll of Swirls unless I feel like being very specific. As a Rapid Strike card, Octillery (SW – Battle Styles 037/163, 178/163; SW – Black Star Promos SWSH089) can fetch Scroll of Swirls from your deck. It is a Trainer-Item, and more specifically, a Pokémon Tool. This is actually a good time to be a Tool; Guzma & Hala can fetch them from your deck (probably won’t be needing that), and Lana’s Fishing Rod lets you recycle a Tool (and a Pokémon) from your discard pile. We have solid anti-Tool options as well, like Tool Scrapper, but at least Scroll of Swirls won’t have to deal with the likes of Field Blower, Lysandre Labs, or Startling Megaphone. At least, not in Standard.
Though Scroll of Swirls is Rapid Strike support, you can attach it to non-Rapid Strike Pokémon. It just won’t do much, as the effect is worded so that it only works for Rapid Strike Pokémon. What is this effect? The Rapid Strike Pokémon with Scroll of Swirls equipped can use the attack printed on this Tool. The attack is “Matchless Maelstrom”, and yes, you still have to pay the Energy cost printed beside it in order to use it. [FCC] isn’t low, but thanks to Rapid Strike Energy, it isn’t as large as it seems; if a Rapid Strike Pokémon has any one Energy on them already, Rapid Strike Energy means they’re a single attachment away. Matchless Maelstrom does 30 damage to each of your opponent’s Pokémon. As usual, you do not apply Weakness or Resistance for any Bench hits, but you do against the Active.
Is this a good attack? No, but I think it comes close. The main concern is that – at least for now – blocking Bench damage just requires Mew (SM – Unbroken Bonds 76/214; SM – Black Star Promos SM215). A Benched Mew makes Scroll of Swirls pretty bad. No clue if it will prove true, but as pure Theorymon (Hypothesismon?), I wonder if Scroll of Swirls would be useful to soften up targets for other Bench-hitters in the Rapid Strike family. Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX being foremost in my mind. However, if you’re only dealing with Pokémon-GX and Pokémon V, Telescopic Sight is better for its flat +30 bonus.
As for the Expanded Format, anti-Item, anti-Tool and Bench protecting effects are stronger, while you have better options for Tools most of the time. Assuming you’re even able to get a Rapid Strike deck up and running in the first place. In either Format, time will tell, not just in the usual sense, but as we receive the rest of the Rapid Strike cards.
- Standard: 2/5
- Expanded: 2/5
I’m being stingy in Standard, and generous in Expanded with these scores. Rapid Strike Scroll of Swirls isn’t a brilliant card, if you can make room for a copy, it seems like a nice option to have. In either Format, you’d probably just go for it as a single. Could be handier than I’m giving it credit for, at least if your opponent lacks Bench protection and is using something like Lillie’s Poké Doll.
It’s been a while since I last saw a Pokémon Tool card that lets you use a different attack that’s printed on the card.
Rapid Strike Scroll of Swirls can be attached to any Pokémon, but the ones to benefit the most are Rapid Strike Pokémon (while being useless on nearly everything else). Also noting that this card can be searched via Octillery’s Rapid Strike Search Ability. This Pokémon Tool adds another attack option in the form of Matchless Maelstrom, which costs FCC and does 30 damage to each of your opponent’s Pokemon. No matter which Rapid Strike Pokémon you attach this card to, as long as you got some source of Fighting energy, they can get access and use that attack. While this is a nice spread attack, there are some existing cards that protect themselves from Bench damage, mostly Mew from Unbroken Bonds, though that card will soon leave rotation.
So far, I don’t see Rapid Strike decks that mandate needing this tool, but in few situations, it could be useful to finish off heavily damaged Pokemon that just moved to the Bench, and you don’t have any “gusting” cards at the time. Give it a try and see how it turns out!
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