Hey there Pokemon fans, welcome back to another article with Kohrok! Today, we’ll be discussing the latest US set, Noble Victories! The 101-card set was released on November 16, 2011, and it promises to be one of the best sets yet. With 5 full-art cards and a secret rare, it rounds out the Black/White Collection quite well. In addition to rare cards, it also contains a number of cards that offer potential in the form of abilities, some of which we will look at today.
First off is Victini (14 and 98), available as a regular holo and as a full-art card. The attack, “Stored Power”, offers a decent 30 damage for (Fire) (Colorless), but it hardly compares to Victini’s ability. Aptly named “Fliptini” by fans of the game, it has caused a huge run on probabilities, leading the entire fan community to begin to get concerned about coin flips and mathematics. The ability, usable one time per turn, allows for the coins used in an attack to be completely re-flipped. Although having multiple Victini in play will not allow the ability to be used multiple times, the ability to re-flip offers huge potential for any coin-flipping deck. Key partners include Sharpedo (TM), whose “Strip Bare” attack now has an increase in success probability, resulting in a 43.75% chance of success. It’s not quite a doubling, but it is an improvement, that will surely lead to an increase in coin-flip play.
The second card to focus on is Chandelure (60). Although not terribly impressive offensively for a Stage 2 Pokemon, it’s (stackable) ability allows you to place 3 damage counters on your opponent’s side of the field, as long as Chandelure is active. The retreat cost of 2 hurts, but by playing Dodrio UD, you can utilize the “Retreat Aid” Poke-body to reduce that to 0, allowing for a free retreat every turn. By playing 2 Chandelure, you open the door to place 6 damage counters and attack using “Eerie Glow” for 50 Damage, burning and confusing your opponent. Current decks plan on running high counts of “Switch” to help allow for additional damage placement, and some decks have opted to look at Kingdra Prime (UL) to allow for even more damage placement, creating (with 2 Chandelure, Dodrio, and 2 Kingdra Prime) the ability to place 8 damage counters onto the field, each and every turn. This same capability, utilized by Garchomp C Lv. X over the past two seasons to great effect, is an extremely potent combination. Even though set-up will be required, the use of Twins (TM) and Rare Candy (UL) offer the ability to get set-up faster and more effectively. A fully powered Chandelure will be a threat, and with a full set-up, it may be even stronger than before.
The third and final card to examine is Conkeldurr (65). Looking like a weaker copy of Machamp SF with it’s “Chip Away”, 1 Fighting energy, 40 damage attack, it doesn’t look very promising in a format with Donphan Prime (HGSS) doing 60 damage for 1 Fighting energy. However, it certainly looks to have potential in the future, due to the fact that “Chip Away” ignores effects on the defending Pokemon. While it won’t ignore Weakness or Resistance, it will ignore Poke-bodies, Pokemon Tools, and Abilities, meaning that sleeping Baby Pokemon will be knocked out, as will Pokemon that are being protected by Pokemon Tools. This card looks plain now, but if those cards become more played, will offer a cheap and effective countermeasure.
Keeping those cards in mind, there are many, many cards in the set that will surely see play over the course of the season. With the reintroduction of Pokemon Tools this set, and the plans for more Stadiums next set, it looks like we’re on our way back to a healthy Spring format. I’ll be back with more news after the Pokemon City Championships get under way, with Tournament Reports and plans for anyone interested!
Until next time, happy holidays!