Shaymin – Ultra Prism
March 23, 2018
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
So go figure, there are two Shaymin in this set – a Grass one and a Colorless one, representing both of his forms. Figures that they’d wanna bring them both in, I mean that’s why they have em!
Shaymin (15) is the Grass Basic Pokemon, 80 HP, with a Fire Weakness, no Resistance, and a Retreat Cost of 1. It’s got two attacks, the first being Coax which brings out 3 Basic Pokemon of different Types onto your Bench. Then there’s Soothing Scent, which does 2-for-30 and puts the opponent’s Active Pokemon to Sleep.
Yeahhhhhh, not a whole lot to work with, but Shaymin is a great set-up for Rainbow Road decks. That deck works around Xerneas (BKT), whose Rainbow Force does more damage with more Pokemon of different Types on the Bench. Aside from that deck, I don’t really see much use for Shaymin at the moment, which is a shame cause it has promise in that deck – and it’s still Standard-legal for the time being! It also could act as a replacement for Brigette in that deck, assuming that you’d rather use an early attack on setting up rather than a Supporter. Something to consider with that.
Standard: 2.5/5 (other than that, though, not a whole lot else I can see for Shaymin)
Expanded: 2.5/5 (he works well with one particular deck…and that’s it)
Limited: 3/5 (but he can also get out a lot of cards in Limited)
As for that other Shaymin, Shaymin (111) is a Colorless Basic Pokemon, 70 HP, with a Lightning Weakness, a Fighting Resistance, and a Retreat Cost of 1. His attacks are Call for Family, which brings 2 Basic Pokemon right to the Bench from your deck, and Glide, which is a vanilla 1-for-20.
Obviously you’d play this for set-up in a Basic-heavy build, the likes of which haven’t been seen for a while now. This can be useful in setting up your Pokemon for Evolutions though, which would be the other main utility to this and the other Shaymin. Aside from setting up, neither is useful for attacking, but both are also designed with different decks in mind. Shaymin (5) works best in Rainbow Road because of the extra calling being limited to Pokemon of different Types while Shaymin (111) can be splashed into any deck since he can search out 2 of any Basic regardless of Type. You can run them or not, but I can imagine Shaymin being run in Eevee decks as a means to get those Eevees out more quickly so as to evolve them into their GX forms that much faster.
Standard: 3/5 (very useful in this regard, and I’d say the expansion of utility gives this one an edge over the other)
Expanded: 2.5/5 (still, both have their strengths and weaknesses, so it shouldn’t be disregarded – the former Shaymin may even play a large role in a future deck)
Limited: 3/5 (as always though, they can both be useful for thinning a deck out in Limited)
Arora Notealus: It’s interesting to me that both of the Shaymins have a
Side Reviews: Lunala <Prism> – I missed out on the last couple of days, but I’ll be brief. I think Lunala <Prism> serves can serve as a powerful alternative attacker in the right setting, but I believe its main usage is more towards giving Energy to your other Pokemon, cycling it around and boosting them for their own attacks based on your opponent’s Pokemon. This can be useful for some decks, but it’s not as wildly necessary as Solgaleo <Prism> can be in certain Metal decks (i.e., Dusk Mane Necrozma-GX). Still worth playing around with at the least, as it can be quite powerful in the right hands.
Dunsparce – this old card is noteworthy for having the same effect as both Shaymins from today, but he has the generic advantage of searching 3 Pokemon and putting them all on the Bench without any regards to limitations. The only trouble is that he needs to Switch with one of them right after, meaning you could be setting yourself up for an easy KO. At least nowadays that might be the case – in those days it could’ve been very different, and giving yourself some breathing room is always nice right after you’ve made a major set-up. Give him a try! Dunsparce needs some love.
#8 Escape Board – I’d have reviewed this card Wednesday, but of course I’m reviewing it now. I haven’t seen Escape Board pop up in too many builds, but I still stand by that it can have a big impact on low Retreat Costs. It may be in a few decks and I just haven’t seen the recipes for it, or maybe those kinds of decks haven’t seen major play in tournaments for whatever reason. Whatever the case may be, keep an eye on this card – there are a few cards that can definitely benefit from its effects.
Weekend Thought: What did you think of this week’s cards? Do you think putting stuff directly to the Bench is a great thing? Were you stunned by the power of Lucario-GX? How about that Energy acceleration? How have your games been going? How are you enjoying the cards from this latest set?
Today we look at Shaymin (SM – Ultra Prism 15/156) and Shaymin (SM – Ultra Prism 111/156). Why two? Because 21times recommended the former but I scheduled the latter. Oops. Fortunately, the cards have a lot in common, so it isn’t overwhelming to compare and contrast them to give a better picture of what each can do.
Both are Basic Pokémon, which is pretty great; fast to the field, minimal deck space, can function as an opener, etc. SM – Ultra Prism 15/156 is a [G] Type while SM – Ultra Prism 111/156 is a [C] Type… not sure if either Typing is especially relevant right now. SM – Ultra Prism 15/156 has 80 HP while SM – Ultra Prism 111/156 only has 70… but both numbers are small and rapid, reliable, repeatable OHKO’s for most offensively minded decks; you might survive a T2 attack or one made with an incomplete setup, but even then their odds aren’t great. The higher HP is better, but not by enough to usually matter. SM – Ultra Prism 15/156 comes out ahead in terms of Weakness and Resistance when compared to SM – Ultra Prism 111/156; [L] Types do have some (more or less) competitive decks to them, but [R] still has Ho-Oh-GX decks so I’m more concerned with it, and of course any Resistance is better than no Resistance, with [F] possibly even proving relevant to the current Buzzwole-GX heavy metagame. Both have a Retreat Cost of [C], which is good but not great; it shouldn’t give you problems.
Both cards have two attacks. SM – Ultra Prism 111/156 can use “Coax” for [C] and “Soothing Scent” for [GC]. Coax allows you to fetch up to three Basic Pokémon from your deck and Bench them, BUT they each have to be a different Type. As long as you’re one of the decks where an important Bench-sitter is (or Evolves) from something that is off-Type to the rest of your deck, this is alright. Not great, however, as you’re still using up an attack (and probably an Energy and Energy attachment) doing something you’d prefer to be handled by your Trainers. Soothing Scent is of similar quality; 30 for two isn’t abysmal, but it needs to have more of a bonus than automatically putting your opponent’s Active to Sleep. Still, in a Pinch this can do some damage while stalling, so it is alright. SM – Ultra Prism 111/156 can use “Call for Family” or “Glide” for [C]. Call for Family allows you Bench up to two Basic Pokémon from your deck, while Ram just does a plain ol’ 20 damage. This is the typical power level of the modern version of Call for Family, and a bit better than I expected of Ram, which means they might be okay but probably will have to settle for being mediocre.
You may be sensing that I am not too impressed by either of these cards. Right now, we have great draw and search power, some in Trainer form and some in Pokémon form, and that leaves me not wanting to attack to do the same job but in a slower or more costly fashion. In the future, after Brigette, N, and Professor Sycamore are gone… we’ll still have cards like Nest Ball, Cynthia, Pokémon Fan Club, and Ultra Ball. The few worthwhile, opening attackers geared for setting up that see competitive play? They tend to do something a little special with it. These cards don’t, and actually inspired my pick of Dunsparce (EX – Sandstorm 60/100) for yesterday’s review, to help emphasize what I’m looking for in a Pokémon that helps you setup via attacking and point out that, with the current first turn rules, such Pokémon are rarely worth it. Possibly, one or both of these could see play in the future, but I’m not holding my breath. They do look great for Limited Format play, however; you usually need all the help you can get setting up.
SM – Ultra Prism 15/156
SM – Ultra Prism 111/156
Pokemon like Shaymin could’ve been a good starting Pokemon, but the change to turn one rules meant that the player cannot attack if they go first. Even Emolga DRX/LTR, despite the free retreat, sees no play at all! Nowadays, even if you get back the ability to attack first turn, I would not give up an attack just to summon more Pokemon, that job can be handled with Bridgette or Nest Ball.
Standard: 1.5/5 (RIP Call for Family variants)
Shaymin (UP15 and UP 111) got TWO new versions in the Ultra Prism expansion set. The Colorless one has the oft seen Call for Family attack that allows you to find two Basics and drop them onto your bench, but the Grass version has a single attachment Colorless attack called Coax which might just be a reasonable replacement for Brigette (BKT 134) after it rotates out at the end of August.
Brigette has become one of the most used cards in the meta today. It’s run in about two-thirds of all decklists, and most of those decks run two, three, or even four copies. It’s become a staple card that facilitates so much stability … and it keeps you from getting donked on turn 1!
But Brigette will be leaving us at the end of August, and Pokemon Fan Club just isn’t as good. It’s alright, and it got a reprint in UP. I’m not sure what kind of a message the designers were sending when they purposefully reprinted Fan Club (even gave it a full art) and clearly intentionally snubbed Brigette. I think we’d all agree, Brigette was NOT built to allow us to grab three GX Pokemon. There’s no question that the designers weren’t thinking about GX’s when Brigette was brought into the format. And it’s pretty obvious that she’s NOT going to be sticking around post rotation either. The days of splashing three big Basic GX Pokemon on your bench turn one are over after August 30th.
Shaymin UP 15 might fill that void, however. Getting Shaymin turn 1 won’t be too difficult with a couple Nest Balls and if you run four of them (ok for you Zoroark fans the other three will be great trade fodder). The problem is that you have to get three different types with Coax. So you won’t be able to smack down three Zorua, but you could put down Zorua, Buzzwole, and Ralts or Buzzwole, Oranguru, and umm yeah something else (pretty limited considering I can’t use Mew or Remoraid). Also, unless you start it, you’ll have to somehow get it into the active. Might not be too hard in Golisopod GX decks where Wimpod has free retreat, but in most other decks, the majority of the time you won’t start Shaymin.
Standard: 2 out of 5
It’s a possibility – we have to at least consider it considering how good the turn 1 Brigette is. It has some inherent limitations, but if we can overcome those, Shaymin might become a valuable turn 1 starting Pokemon.
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