January 9, 2018
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Shining Mew (Shining Legends 40/73) received a decent amount of hype prior to the release of Shining Legends. So far, it hasn’t lived up to most of it, but it hasn’t been a total no-show in the competitive sphere either. What Shining Mew has going for it is being a Basic Pokémon with a free Retreat Cost and the attack “Legendary Guidance”: for [P] that allows you to search your deck for up two two Energy cards and attach them to your Pokémon. You can fetch Special Energy cards with this, and you also can attach to either a single Pokémon or to two different ones. Going against Shining Mew is its 30 HP and needing [P] to use Legendary Guidance.
The factors that are more difficult to classify are the first turn rules affects on this card, as well as Counter Catcher and Counter Energy. Shining Mew is less appealing if you go first because that means your opponent has two turns of attacking before you can start swinging for damage… and one turn of having to survive while your opponent is able to attack. If first turn attacks were allowed by the player going first, this wouldn’t be an issue but that would mean Shining Mew would be a terrible opening Pokémon when going second because 30 HP ain’t surviving an attack. People like me were wrong about Counter Catcher and Counter Energy catching on (some hope either will matter sooner or later); the expected strategy was using Legendary Guidance to slap two Energy – possibly even two Counter Energy – on a target, allowing Shining Mew to be OHKO’d afterward, and then bringing up some heavy hitter that can afford any four Energy attack and maybe having Counter Catcher to force up a target of your choice without having to burn a Supporter or use an Ability.
You know me; I like to rely on actual tournament results because I don’t always trust what I encounter on the PTCGO. Local Leagues and even some large-scale events can still suffer from local biases as well. I’m behind in my PTCGO playing, especially for Standard and Expanded so I don’t know if the one 6th place finish of a deck featuring a single copy of Shining Mew is a fluke or a taste of things to come, but I know the deck didn’t include the above combo I mentioned.
All in all, I expect Shining Mew to be a niche figure; every now and then, some deck will amaze us by using it well, but the majority of the time, it is just too much of a liability, even in the slower decks where it would make sense. I am guessing that this card is worse in Expanded, because one form of Night March counter is punishing low HP Pokémon (Benched or Active) while another is discarding their Energy (which is usually Double Colorless Energy); both should frustrate the player trying to use Shining Mew. Might be some hidden powerhouses hidden in the Expanded cardpool, however, that would take the risk for Legendary Guidance. The HP is even an issue in the Limited Format (should you actually be able to arrange a tournament using this set).
Shining Mew is a card which I think has potential, but I am too afraid to use it. I think the only reason I’m afraid to use it is that Shining Mew has only 30 HP, which is an OHKO on most competitive cards that sees play. Such a low HP can make Shining Mew even vulnerable on the bench, as a small Water Shuriken from XY Greninja can pick it off or using two Feather Arrow abilities. Hypnotoxic Laser and Virbank City Gym also takes out Shining Mew in between turns (especially terrible if you are forced to start the game with Shining Mew going second and your opponent pulls this trick on you).
Aside from the low bulk, Shining Mew does have an attack that greatly sets up your Pokémon. Legendary Guidance costs P, and you search your deck for 2 energy cards and attach them to your Pokémon in any way you like. The wording also covers Special Energies, so not only you get to search for Basic Energy, you could even fetch Double Colorless Energy, Counter Energy, or even Double Dragon Energy to fuel up your Benched Pokémon. It’s free retreat will ensure that your prepped benched Pokémon is ready to attack (if Shining Mew survives an attack).
But even if you do get fully set up with Special Energies, you are bound to run into Enhanced Hammer and/or Kartana-GX, which will get rid of Special Energies, making your efforts futile.
Shining Mew (Shining Legends, 40/73) snuck into the meta from the Shining Legends expansion set. This 30 HP Psychic kitten has the ability to enthrall its opponents with its super cuteness… ok just kidding (although XY Promo 110 is about the cutest card you’ll find in all of Pokemon). It has the enticing attack of being able to search your deck for two Energy cards (yes that’s ANY energy, basic and special) and attach them to your Pokemon in any way you’d like. The idea of this attack tempted many of us. It could instantly power up three attachment Pokemon. You could power up two separate single attachment attackers. If it could get off a couple attacks early in the game, you’d be set, and it would thin your deck of energy so you’d be more likely to draw into supporters, items, and Pokemon you would potentially need.
Unfortunately, this card has several drawbacks that have worked to completely discourage its use:
I actually instantly thought about other Pokemon that could potentially mimic its attack, like Mew (Fates Collide, 29/124), Mew EX (XY Promo 126), and Marshadow GX (Burning Shadows, 80/147), but they’re all pretty frail too and (except for Mew) require Psychic energy anyways.
So I decided to go get a playset and try it out. I saw a couple videos where it was paired with Snorlax GX and Mewtwo GX, but neither of those particularly interested me. The one thing I’ll definitely say that I scored on was teching in Nihilego GX. In most of the matches I played, I was able to offset the loss of a couple of Shining Mews with Nihilego being able to add a couple of cards back to my opponent’s prizes. I played a couple of games with Toxapex GX and a couple of games with Mewtwo EX (damage change), but I didn’t win any of them. I think Shining Mew would be better with a Pokemon with a damage multiplier (hint hint Lunala Prism 62/138… btw just noticed that the English translation of this card is in the database at Pokemon.com. Looks like 4 UP cards are in there already, Leafeon GX, Glaceon GX, Lunala Prism, and Super Boost Energy Prism). It might also work with decks that need SPE like DCE or Burning Energy. However, Shining Mews reliance on Psychic energy to activate this attack somewhat limits that, although you could use Rainbow energy to active it.
Standard: 2 out of 5
I have NO DOUBT that at some point over the next two and a half years a Psychic Pokemon will come along and make Shining Mew completely relevant – it’s just not here in our meta today.
Man, this guy is so tiny. Is he going to be that useful?
Shining Mew’s potency, go figure, isn’t Beam, the 1-for-10 vanilla move. It’s mainly on Legendary Guidance, a 1-Energy move that grabs whatever 2 Energy cards you want from your deck and attaches them to your Pokemon in any way you’d like. This is amazing for actual Energy acceleration, the only major problem is that chances are Shining Mew isn’t sticking around long to get you more than 1 set unless your opponent is either using their own or just not attacking for some reason on their turn.
This is a “high risk high reward” kind of Pokemon. On the one hand, you get the upper hand in Energy acceleration and deck thinning for those pesky Energy cards. On the other, you give your opponent an easy Pokemon to KO, and that puts you behind in the Prize game unless they too are working on their Energy acceleration. And let’s face it, there aren’t that many Pokemon that hit for under 30 HP.
Is he useful? Certainly. But is he worth it? I think that depends strongly on the speed of the game. If people are used to KOing with only 1 or 2 Energy and on their first turn (usually going second to actually, you know, attack), it might not be worth keeping Shining Mew in, but if it’s slower and players aim to take time setting up before trashing through the opponent – or better yet, if you’re going second and start with Shining Mew, then there’s potential to end up completely stomping on your opponent as well.
Such is the risk we all take…
Standard: 2.5/5 (I think it’s fair to judge a card so hit-or-miss on that first turn of the game as 50/50)
Expanded: 2/5 (but also keep in mind that if you draw it later, it’s gotta be played QUICK if you’re going to take advantage of its attack)
Limited: 4/5 (hard to argue against Energy acceleration that strong though)
Arora Notealus: Shining Mew’s still a really cool looking Shiny! Not sure if there’s been a release for Shiny Mews though. I feel like there have been, as there have definitely been several event releases for Mew. One of them had to be shiny…hmmm…
Side Reviews: Milotic – Probably the scariest part of Milotic is her TLC attack, which can force back a Pokemon and all the cards attached to it back into the deck with ease. The only stipulations are that it has to be on the Bench, and it has to have damage, something that Ocean Cyclone could do, though it is a 4-for-80 move itself. I think TLC ought to be used as an emergency strike, following a quick Guzma to take out a big threat. Could even see some tech play in Water Toolbox!
Gengar – Gnawing Curse can soften up a lot of Pokemon pretty easily, but I’d worry about getting out a Stage 2 Pokemon in order to actually enact the damage. The previous evolutions can also put down damage counters, but they have to attack in order to do so, and neither does it to the extent that Gengar does. The other trick is that the Energy has to come from their hand, which makes it unlikely to go off any more than once a turn, even if your opponent has other acceleration options. Fade to Black’s just a funny 3-for-70 move that Confuses the Pokemon, but I don’t think it’s enough to make Gengar your attacker of choice.
Luxury Ball – Luxury Ball’s an interesting search card, acting very similarly to the ACE SPEC Master Ball in that it searches out any Pokemon you want. The only difference is that Luxury Ball could be run in multiples, but it was only effective if others weren’t in your discard pile, something that might have been a problem at the time of its release, up until the introduction of the Lost Zone mechanic. It also excluded Pokemon Lv. X, which while today it wouldn’t matter as much, I’d imagine a modern Luxury Ball would exclude EX/GX from the search to match up with its previous iteration.
Next Time: The power of the legendary clone returns as another GX!!
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