Single Strike Urshifu – Chilling Reign
Date Reviewed: July 27, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
I’m sure you saw this coming; today we look at Single Strike Urshifu (SW – Chilling Reign 108/198). As the name tells us, this is a Single Strike Pokémon… except, that isn’t completely true as it is the label in the upper right-hand corner of the art that truly makes it a Single Strike card. Still, this means access to some potent support. I expected its Darkness typing to prove handy for bopping an opponent’s Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX, but either the Player’s Cup IV Regionals didn’t allow SW – Chilling Reign cards, or the deck doing so well in Japan was a no-show in the top cut. There are a few nice tricks available to [D] types as well, though Justified Gloves is a new anti-Darkness card that might actually be worth it.
Single Strike Urshifu may have a Battle Style, but it is not a Rule Box Pokémon and is only worth a single Prize when KO’d. As a Stage 1, Single Strike Urshifu should be reasonable to run, whether as low as a 1-1 line or as much as the full 4-4. Only one version of Kubfu exists, SW – Chilling Reign 093/198), so use it. Its 140 HP is a little more than decent, a little less than “good”, even factoring in its Stage. [G] Weakness isn’t as bad as some, but it looks like we’re seeing a little Grass in the topcut, and that means 70 damage (before Weakness) can OHKO Single Strike Urshifu. No Resistance is typical, so even though it is the worst, it doesn’t really hurt the card. Similarly, a Retreat Cost of [CC] is also common, and neither low enough to be a bonus nor high enough to be a detriment.
Single Strike Urshifu knows two attacks. For [DC] Single Strike Urshifu can attack using “Field Crush” to do 50 damage, and also to discard an opponent’s Stadium. You don’t get a choice about whether to discard, and the damage isn’t massive, but it also only discards your opponent’s Stadium. Overall, a it is a decent attack. “Fists of Strife” is the card’s second attack, priced at [DDC]. It does 100 damage, but if Single Strike Urshifu has any damage counters on it, the attack does another 100 damage (200 total). 100 for three is mediocre, but 200 for three is good. Still not enough to OHKO Basic Pokémon V, but anything without defensive buffs is going down in two hits, from a single Prize Pokémon.
Wait, there’s more. In fact, you might be annoyed I’m listing this combo as it is so obvious: Houndoom (SW – Battle Styles 096/163, 179/163, SW – Black Star Promos SWSH090). Not only can its “Single Strike Roar” help with the Energy costs, not only can attaching Single Strike Energy up Fists of Strife’s damage, but Single Strike Roar places two damage counters on the Pokémon receiving the Energy. That is more than enough to activate Fists of Strife’s effect. Just one Single Strike Energy, plus enough other Energy to cover Fists of Strife’s [DDC] Energy cost, yields 220 damage. That won’t OHKO bigger Basic Pokémon V, but it will handle most that see competitive play.
There is still a little more. While 120 HP isn’t as durable as 140, as a Single Strike Pokémon you can run Abomasnow (SW – Chilling Reign 010/198) in the deck as well, and Abomasnow’s Toughness Boost will grant all your Single Strike Pokémon (except those named “Abomasnow”) plus 50 HP. That means you can even use Single Strike Roar twice on the same Single Strike Urshifu and leave it with 150 HP, but swinging for 240 damage. Plus, that Single Strike Urshifu can even have begun the turn with no Energy, so long as you manually attach one and then have two Houndoom in play and two Single Strike Energy still in your deck.
You can really go for broke if your opponent has already taken enough Prizes; Single Strike Pokémon have Karen’s Conviction to do another 20 per Prize card your opponent has taken. This is probably a late game play, but it has a chance of bringing even Pokémon VMAX into OHKO range. As for an opponent able to bring a Single Strike Urshifu down to 10 HP before you’ve gotten enough Energy attached to it, don’t forget Single Strike Scroll of Scorn so you can still try for a decent return. Putting it all together, seems like Single Strike Urshifu just needs to work out a good plan for setting up to have at least a decent, maybe even a strong Single Prize deck. I’m less certain of Expanded, due to the added competition and counters but… I think I still like this hypothetical deck even there. Just remember that I’ve not actually seen anyone using this.
- Standard: 3/5
- Expanded: 3/5
We would love more volunteers to help us with our Card of the Day reviews. If you want to share your ideas on cards with other fans, feel free to drop us an email. We’d be happy to link back to your blog / YouTube Channel / etc. 😉Click here to read our Pokémon Card of the Day Archive. We have reviewed more than 3500 Pokemon cards over the last 17+ years!