Sidney – Fusion Strike
December 11, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
We end the week with Sidney (SW – Fusion Strike 241/264; 264/264; 279/264). This Supporter forces your opponent to reveal their hand. You then discard up to two cards from your opponent’s hand but those cards can only be Stadiums, Tools, or Special Energy. You can mix and match (a Stadium and a Tool, a Stadium and a Special Energy, or a Tool and a Special Energy), or just discard two cards of the same class. The wording does say “up to”, so you can discard just a single Stadium, or a single Tool, or a Single Special Energy. If you don’t find any card belonging to these three categories… well, you still got to see your opponent’s hand.
This is a “control” or “disruption” style effect. Yeah, when I’m being particular, I classify disruption as a form of control. “Control” forces you to play or not play something; disruption achieves this by disrupting (altering) your hand, field, etc. Such effects tend to vary wildly in efficacy in the Pokémon TCG. That is because we typically enjoy fantastic levels of draw, search, and/or recycling in Pokémon, especially when compared and contrasted with other major TCGs. Indeed, while there have been some crazy exceptions, many of the best control strategies in Pokémon work by combining several balanced, or even weak, effects. The whole becomes greater than the sum of its parts.
I don’t know if that will happen with Sidney. You’re giving up your precious Supporter for the turn. You’re using this instead of Boss’s Orders, Marnie, Professor’s Research, or whatever other Supporter you might wish to run in its stead. All three kinds of cards hit by Sidney are not easy to recycle in most decks, but they’re also not always present. Stadiums can be discarded after they hit the field by other Stadiums; Tools and Special Energy hit the discard pile as soon as the Pokémon to which they are attached does. There are also more specific cards that can counter them once in play. Even viewed collectively, these three kinds of cards are probably just a small chunk of the typical deck, which I think will hold Sidney back a bit.
Sidney isn’t a bad card, though. At least, not on paper; he’s specialized, but you don’t typically get this kind of hand disruption in Pokémon, even as a Supporter. So I think he’s a solid card in both Standard and Expanded. While not enough to further raise the card’s score, he should be better in Expanded; VS Seeker makes it a lot easier to sneak in one Sidney, or to max it out and spam it beyond four times. I haven’t noticed him in any deck lists yet, however, so take all of this with a grain of (speculative) salt.
- Standard: 3/5
- Expanded: 3/5
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