– Unbroken Bonds

Date Reviewed:
June 28, 2019

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 2.75
Expanded: 2.00
Limited: 3.50

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

Reviews Below:

vince avatar

Venomoth may technically be a Bug/Poison Type, but it can be made to be pretty agile if rigorously trained. Apparently, it has been used by at least two prominent characters, which would make this review a possible three-in-one review in order to save other weekday review slots. Today’s Venomoth was made to be a Stage 1 Grass type GX with 200 HP, weak to Fire, a retreat cost of one, and two attacks. I’ll get the GX attack out of the way: Ten Fold Return costs C for 60 damage, and you shuffle your hand into your deck and draw 10 cards. This is perhaps a good attack to start before you eventually get to it’s only main repeatable attack. Having a big hand size is good, but because you’ve used your attack for 10 cards, your opponent may reduce your hand size via Judge or Let Loose Marshadow, or copy it with Copycat and make use of those cards in their turn.

Shinobi Mastery is Venomoth’s main attack, as it does 110 damage for GCC with added effects depending on which one you’ve used. If you’ve played Koga’s Trap, this attack does 90 more damage, making it 200 for 3 energy. If you’ve played Janine, then you are protected from damage by Basic Pokémon on your opponent’s next turn. Those effects look pretty good, but because of what cards it interacts with, it is important to know what the other two cards are. Both Koga’s Trap and Janine are Supporter cards, and Supporter cards are bound by the one per turn rule unless you bypass with another card. Depending if you can get the chain going, you may or may not be able to apply two effects at once. Lt. Surge’s Strategy is a perfect example, letting you use THREE supporters as long as you are behind on prizes. That requires you to play exactly Lt. Surge first and then both Koga & Janine afterwards.

Koga’s Trap makes your opponent’s Active Pokemon Confused and Poisoned, which makes Shinobi Mastery become 210-for-3 due to base damage, damage boost, and poison. If your opponent decides to try and attack while confused, you may put three more damage counters if the attack fails, though savvy opponent’s would have some way of switching and manually retreat to get rid of special conditions. Further damage counter placements can come from Pokémon or other trainer cards like Seviper or Virbank City Gym. Or Dust Island keeps that special condition even if they switch, but then manually retreating still gets rid of it, so looks like it’s not an option to have. In terms of general usage of Koga, if you can afford to give up draw power for just one turn, then those Special Conditions may be useful to finish something off that had 10 HP.

Janine is about consistency. She lets you look at the top 4 cards from your deck, put two of them into your hand, and shuffle the rest. Magcargo’s Smooth Over will ensure that you’ll get exactly what you need before you play her. As far as Shinobi Mastery protecting you from damage by Basic Pokémon, well, Basic Pokémon sees lots of play than Stage 2s. Tag Team cards are also basic, so you can wall against many of the deck archetypes that’s currently been used at tournaments. Even if Zoroark-GX is unaffected by Janine’s added effect, Shinobi Mastery still OHKOes it, again, by boosted damage and poison. I don’t know if Janine’s general usage is decent elsewhere as it is similar to Underground Expedition, and that has seen decent amount of play at least a decade ago when insane draw power was nearly non-existent during the Diamond and Pearl era.

Overall, Venomoth-GX has nice tricks, but doesn’t seem to have enough substance to hold its own on a prolonged battle. Those combos will make you run a abnormally high Supporter count on a pretty tight 60 card deck because of those two Supporters. Even with old and new cards like Pal Pad and VS Seeker, the deck will run out of steam once all of those resources and recovery options are exhausted. Shinobi Mastery will be a simple 3 for 110 damage, which is low for 2HKO thresholds. Venomoth-GX hasn’t appeared on any featured tournaments, so maybe its potential has yet to be realized or be overlooked. But once Double Colorless Energy rotates out, then Venomoth will be too slow to attack. Still, I would give this a try!



Standard: 3/5

Expanded: 3/5

Limited: 3.5/5

Koga’s Trap

Standard: 3/5

Expanded: 2.5/5

Limited: 4/5


Standard: 3/5

Expanded: 2/5

Limited: 4.5/5

Otaku Avatar

Hey, all.  A family crisis came up so if I get a full review posted, it will have to be much later.  Even this mini-review is late.  Venomoth-GX is a Stage 1 Pokémon-GX, on the smaller side, with only a regular attack and a GX-attack.  For [GCC] it can do 110, with two optional bonus effects that trigger if you used the correct Supporter that turn; Koga’s Trap means an extra 90 damage, while Janine means immunity to damage from the attacks of your opponent’s Basic Pokémon the next turn.  Both of those cards are Supporters, so it is possible to use both but only through things like Lt. Surge’s Strategy or Magnezone [Plasma].

Koga’s Trap leaves your opponent’s Active Confused and Poisoned; Janine lets you look at the top two cards of your deck, then put two in hand (the other two are shuffled back into your deck).  The short version is that these two are solid enough Supporters, so they shouldn’t be too big a burden to utilize in your deck.  For [C], Venomoth-GX can also use its GX-attack, which lets you shuffle your hand into your deck, then draw 10 cards.  It is a decent option to have, but not something I’d rely on for setting up; we already have Judge, Marshadow (SLG), and soon we’ll have Reset Stamp (or whatever it ends up being named outside of Japan).

I haven’t seen any Venomoth-GX decks winning major events, but I’m crunched for time so I had to do a really, really quick glance.  I suspect Venomoth, Koga, and Janine will be worth another look post-rotation… and we’ll probably review those two Supporters “for real” sooner or later.  I simply had a brainfart and thought we already had covered them, or else I’d have slipped them in earlier this week.

Tentative Ratings

Standard: 2.5/5

Expanded: 2/5

Limited: 3.5/5

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!