– Lost Thunder

Date Reviewed:
November 20, 2018

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 2.88
Expanded: 3.00
Limited: 3.00

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.

Reviews Below:

Otaku Avatar

If you’re late to the party, here is an article that explains how our normal countdowns work. This time, we had a group of cards nominated because of their close ties to each other, a practice we allow provided it doesn’t needlessly complicate things. The short version is that it did needlessly complicate things this time and on my watch. First place went to a group nomination that covered at least two cards, probably three cards, and upwards of five cards if we stretch things.  Five is a nice number for CotD’s, so this week is more or less dedicated to the first place pick “Lost March”. While some of these reviews are on the shorter side, the cards involved really deserve their own separate coverage, especially as they may have non-Lost March uses. The letters you see in the title aren’t about rank but convenient organization: 1a isn’t automatically better or worse than 1e. They are all simply our first place pick.  So “1b” is Trumbeak (SM – Lost Thunder 165/214), a Stage 1 [C] Type with [L] Weakness, [F] Resistance, Retreat Cost [C], the Ability “Mountain Pass”, and the attack “Peck”. Mountain Pass is activated when Trumbeak is in your hand, not in play. It is once-per-turn-per-copy Ability that lets you look at the top card of your opponent’s deck, sending it to the Lost Zone if it is a Supporter but leaving it alone if it is anything else. Either way, the Trumbeak used is sent to the Lost Zone. The text also makes it clear you cannot use this Ability if your opponent has no cards left in his or her deck. Peck is much simpler: it costs [C] and does 30 damage.

Being a Stage 1 is actually a good deal; on the off chance you want to put Trumbeak in play, it isn’t too slow or too demanding. We even have Ditto {*} now, so even if you were using Trumbeak for its Ability, you might have a way for it to hit the field. Being a Stage 1 with an Ability activated from the hand, you probably don’t want it to be a Basic, because that would risk a copy getting stuck as your opening Pokémon. The [C] Typing won’t hit Weakness or Resistance, and there are very few pieces of [C] support worth using. This might be one of the few exceptions, as maybe Winona could snag this alongside (for example a Shaymin-EX (XY – Roaring Skies 77/108, 77a/108, 106/108) in Expanded.  80 HP is tiny, and if this card wasn’t something I expect to almost never hit the field, it would be bad. Instead, if you never plan on fielding it, it is a good thing as it means Level Ball can fetch it from your deck. [L] Weakness is painful if you’re actually Evolving something into Trumbeak while the [F] Resistance is against a Type used often enough it can matter but in both cases, the HP makes it somewhat likely you’ll be OHKO’d regardless of either. The Retreat Cost is good but not great, especially when you’re an 80 HP Stage 1; again, good thing it won’t matter because you’re running this for the Ability.

Peck is a filler attack, but not entirely useless; almost entirely, but if you’re desperate to do a quick bit of damage, 30 for one of any Energy isn’t a bad return.  On something else, it could be a vanilla but still useful attack.  Just not here because this card really has no business being in play.  I suppose if you play a Toucannon deck, you should run this Trumbeak but also alongside Rare Candy.  You’re actually relying on Rare Candy, and just bringing the Stage 1 along for the ride in case of things like Item lock, devolution, etc. that would make Rare Candy a bad idea… which actually makes Mountain Pass a good compliment for Rare Candy.  Spare Trumbeak aren’t wasted space like most Stage 1 cards run in addition to a full count of Rare Candy.  Though I am probably getting ahead of myself, because we haven’t answered an important question: is Mountain Pass any good?  It basically allows Trumbeak to act as like an Item card while retaining all the search and recycling tricks of Pokémon.  It is vulnerable to counters which apply to Pokémon and not Items, such as Ability lock… at least, when that Ability lock applies to Pokémon in hand.

Mountain Pass – and thus Trumbeak itself – is low risk in terms of what it costs, and high reward in terms of what it can do, but also low probability in terms of it actually doing it all.  You can count on it sending itself to the Lost Zone and getting a peak at your opponent’s next card, however,  while decks run a lot of Supporters, they don’t run so many that you have great odds of hitting one randomly sitting on top of your opponent’s deck.  There are combos that let you know if it’ll whiff ahead of time, and even some cards that can manipulate the top few cards of your opponent’s deck, but between what I can clearly remember or easily look up, nothing that combos well (re: isn’t an attack) is Expanded or Standard legal.  I suppose Trick Shovel could qualify, but that already gives you the option of discarding.  Reclaiming Supporters from the discard pile is practically a given in Expanded, so I suppose it still could be worth it.  Trick Shovel is a card for three often overlapping deck strategies; control, disruption, and mill and that is a place where you should always consider (if not test) Trumbeak.  A specific version of such decks, using Unown (SM – Lost Thunder 92/214) and its “MISSING” Ability to win, will find Trumbeak an amazing “weapon”. Just remember that even if all four Trumbeak hit Supporters, that is only a third of the the way to what you need.

The more obvious use for this bird is in Lost March decks, as the “Lost March” attack does 20 damage times the number of your Pokémon in the Lost Zone other than Prism Stars. In that deck, you’re potentially sending an opponent’s Supporter someplace your opponent cannot reclaim it – even in Expanded – while gaining +20 to your main attacker(s) damage. +20 your opponent currently has no way of reducing, unlike discard pile-based attackers that must fear Karen. Seems like Trumbeak is a must-run for Lost March decks, maybe not maxed out but I still wouldn’t want to run less than three (and do favor four, but I haven’t actually run the deck yet). Given how much Expanded depends on VS Seeker, I don’t know if that makes Trumbeak better or worse. You’re less likely to hit something but if you do, it might be something your opponent planned on recycling a few times. The usual “more combos, competition, and counters” aspect also applies as well. Definitely run this in the Limited Format; even with 40 card decks, it is hard to believe you pulled enough “good” cards to not have space. Knowing your opponent’s next card is more of an advantage here, even if you cannot do anything directly about it. If you actually hit a Supporter, it is even more devastating here, as your opponent probably has very few left.


  • Standard: 3/5
  • Expanded: 3/5
  • Limited: 3.5/5

The only things bringing down Trumbeak’s scores are the general lack of deck space and that the odds are just too low it’ll hit a Supporter.  If we see a Supporter heavier Format in the future or a combo partner that improves the odds and already belongs in most decks, Trumbeak becomes amazing.  As is, most of that score comes from being so important to Lost March decks, except for the Limited Format where it would score higher except it can only help you directly win if it forces your opponent to deck out… but is a valuable play nonetheless.

vince avatar

I briefly mentioned Trumbeak on yesterday’s review of Lost Blender, though I will add that it potentially does useful things for two subjects: Lost March and Unown with the Missing Ability. For Lost March, it fuels damage output by 20, and getting a Supporter card in the Lost Zone is a nice bonus. Unown Missing, on the other hand, needs to be lucky because either Trumbeak can whiff all four times or get four supporters in the Lost Zone. Even then, that’s like about 33% progressed.

  • Standard: 3/5
  • Expanded: 3/5
  • Limited: 3/5
21 Times Avatar

Trumbeak (LOT 165) swoops into the meta out of the Lost Thunder expansion set.  This Stage 1 80 HP Colorless Pokemon essentially serves a single purpose: to function as Lost March fuel.  I’m pretty sure the designers, while in the process of developing the archetype, basically figured out that it needed just a little more punch, something to give it just a little more potency.  Skiploom’s ability to put itself and Hoppip in the discard was good, Lost Blender worked well too, but as they were playtesting, they realized we need just one more thing to make this deck uber powerful.

I don’t know how they picked Trumbeak.  If it were me, I would make the most popular Pokemon the most powerful or useful ones.  I mean, I would have put the Lost March attack on Pikachu and not Natu.  I would have put the other Lost March attack on Swampert or Gengar or Tyranitar.  Trumbeak’s ability I would have put on Gyarados or Marowak.  I don’t know if they just do eenie meenie miney mo or if they have some pattern of spreading feature abilities and attacks around.  Maybe Natu and Jumpluff and Trumbeak are all BFF’s and they wanted to put all their buds together in one super powerful archetype that would define the game for the next three years.

Trumbeak is a four of in the Lost March archetype.  I doubt it will see play in anything else, although I might be willing to try a Toucannon deck at some point (Lightning weakness, Fighting resistance and 160 damage with only a minor restriction on the attack, it’s worth trying at some point).  Its added bonus of milling  a Supporter card will only work for you a fraction of the time (players rarely run Supporters as more than 20% of their deck, meaning that the vast majority of the time you will not be discarding your opponent’s top card), but there is some value in knowing what your opponent’s next card is … even if it is bad news in the form of a Tapu Lele GX or energy card that they’ll need on the next turn.


Standard: 2 out of 5


One heads up: if you do run Ditto in your Lost March deck and play Trumbeak, be careful to select the ability and do not evolve Ditto.  The mechanism on PTCGO is a little confusing, just keep in mind that there are two potential choices and you definitely want to select the one that sends Trumbeak off to the Lost Zone.

aroramage avatar

And now we come to one of the first members of the Lost March attack itself, and go figure he’s the small cute one! Don’t worry, you’ll meet the other one soon enough. And if you don’t know by now, they are also cute.

Natu is a Basic Psychic Pokemon, 40 HP, with a Psychic Weakness, no Resistance, and a Retreat Cost of 1. Lost March is the only move he’s got, which for 2 Energy of any kind will deal 20 damage for every Pokemon in the Lost Zone, except for Pokemon <Prism>.

Now that we’ve covered the basic function of the deck, you can understand why cards like Lost Blender and Trumbeak are so big for the deck. Without them, the attacks wouldn’t really do much. With a Lost Blender and a Trumbeak, Lost March can start out at 60 damage, which is a bit average for 20 damage, but if it can be built similarly to Night March decks, there are a number of ways to let those cards appear often enough in your hand so that you can use them a lot to power it up really fast. And with DCE, Natu can attack with it right away!

It’s not a foolproof plan – Natu itself is extremely vulnerable until you can get fully set-up, but if Joltik was anything to go by, it shouldn’t be a problem. Not to mention you don’t have to worry about getting specific Pokemon into the Lost Zone, cause any Pokemon will do! And once you’re set-up with enough Pokemon to dish out a ton of damage – about 13 will put you into OHKO range on anything in the game, and Lost Blender/Trumbeak can cover most of that – Natu will be in pretty good condition to tear through the competition!


Standard: 3.5/5 (set him up, and he’ll be amazing)

Expanded: 3.5/5 (knock em down, and you’ll do well)

Limited: 3.5/5 (do your best, Natu, do your best)

Arora Notealus: Such small Pokemon, such dangerously powerful attacks.

Next Time: And now for the last two members of the Lost March archetype!

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