Prof-It! Episode 40: Breaking News! Black and White Rule Changes

This is a special episode deviating a little bit from the episode I promised last week, but a huge rule change is upon us that I feel will seriously threaten the state of our game. Let me know your opinions about the changes in the comments section below!

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Here is a list of all of the Pokémon Cards cut in the English Black and White set, and what each card does:

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56 replies

  1. Anonymous

    the play trainer on first turn is especially broken wih BTS. since it allows to get stage pokemon out 1st turn. i hate these new rules!!!!!!!!!!(if you didnt realize this 1) your might be dumb or 2) IM ANGERED!!!!!!!!

  2. Anonymous

    The one’s complaining about the format must not have played during the Wizards Of the Coast days. This is better than that. Turn one trainers is not the end of the world. I am sick of being “donked” on my opponents first turn (2nd in the game) when I have a lone basic, but a freakin’ pkmn collector in hand.

    You guys want broken? Lets talk about RAIN DANCE BLASTOISE before Wizards had to errata and ban the deck from Tournies.

    Or RIPTIDE FERALIGATR. I remember top cutting with Champ once with 15 other FERALIGATRS. Needless to say I didn’t go far.

    HAYMAKER anyone? This deck is SPs granddaddy.

    At least now you have more variety. It’s appalling that no one one has noticed the real issue of the game. It’s the low energy, high damage, attacks. That is when the game took a down turn. Made everything speedy. Disruption is the name of the game.

    We had turn one trainers, along with the feared “Gust Of Wind” a.k.a. POKEMON CATCHER, but it didn’t mean the end of the world. When a deck dishes out 60 damage on turn one or two that’s when there is problem.

    This is why donking exist. It was nigh impossible to donk during the wizard days. Most decent attacks took AT LEAST three energy.

    The game focused more on long term strategy, not being the fastest and disrupting your opponent to prevent a game.

    Oh, let’s not mention the “exclusive” SP engine. That wasn’t around either. PKMN basically reprinted GOOP GAS ATTACK (improved Power Spray), SCOOP UP (Poke turn), SP RADAR (Pokemon Trader; before we received communication) AND COMPUTER SEARCH (CYRUS), for just a set group of cards, not the entire format. Lame.

    A mid season rotation WOULD NOT alleviate all of the problems. Just think about the new players who have been buying cards prior to HGSS, only to learn that their money was wasted, and much more than anticipated is going to be rotated.

    Or what about the players who have been refining a deck they are really good at for Nats or even Worlds, only to learn they have to start completely from scratch?

    So the complaining will never end. If you want to criticize, provide constructive input with decent supporting information.

    And no, saying that BTS proves a mid season rotation is not enough. Because obviously, a player can get an entire STAGE 2 line with and energy and swing on turn one CONSISTENTLY with POWER SPRAY and Spiritomb in the format. I don’t buy it.

    Obviously some cards will receive a boost. But with the change in format will come a change in people’s strategies to combat it, such is the way of the game. From my knowledge, most of that stuff is rotating at seasons end anyway, so I am stoked that something may finally knock Luxchomp off of its pedestal, which isn’t BDIF, it’s MPIF (Most played in format), which means statistically, it is bound to win more anyways.

    Let the game evolve and the problems will work itself out. Pokemon has come a long way from its beginning.

      • Anonymous  → Anonymous

        No prob. I played the game at the beginning and said problems we are having now didn’t exist. Also, Wizards always had the guts to ban something if need be. I just wish people realized it.

        I think TCPI/ Nintendo are just making mistakes because the didn’t START the TCG, and they are now moving in a cycle and ultimately going to end up where Wizards left off they improvements will come. But the one “one energy-for-god-damage” has to go. This is why we have donks. No game is a game when you can never set up, or you lose on turn one.

        Don’t quit the game yet! I just got back after almost six years of not playing, but I am happy to see that more than one deck wins, even if 80 % of those are Luxchomp. That percentage didn’t even exist during the golden days!

        • Matthew Riddle  → Anonymous

          “I am sick of being “donked” on my opponents first turn (2nd in the game) when I have a lone basic, but a freakin’ pkmn collector in hand.”

          So, you’re okay with being “donked” on your opponent’s first turn when they go first?

          At least in the prior situation, you had one turn to use Call Energy, or an attack like Call for Friends.

        • Anonymous  → Matthew

          There is no solution to both situations. Probability will always play its roll. The only only way to ensure this is to get rid of high damage, low energy attacks, as aforementioned. But at least the stage two player going first can put up more a fighting chance while SPs are in rotation.

        • Martin Garcia  → Anonymous

          Actually they cant. With rare candy the way it is now, stage 2 decks are almost unplayable, with the exception of vilegar, who never used trainers in the first place.

          And sp is not the most benefited from this, but stage 1 decks.
          Since sp still needs 1 turn to lv up and deal some real damage, this rule didnt affect them much. Stage 1 decks like donphan, yanmega, and gyarados, on the other hand, still have access to BTS, so they can get out their main attackers quickly to deal heavy damage before their opponent even gets to draw a card.

          Gyarados particularly worries me, getting a 130 hp stage 1 pkmn out on turn 1 and dealing 90~110 damage to your opponent´s lone basic . . . not funny.

        • Anonymous  → Martin

          If you are going first, playing a stage 2 deck against SP, you get to rare candy on turn 3 of the game, before they get to lv X./ Dragon Rush/ Bright Look whatever it is. The rule change will take effect over time to improve the game.

          You missed the part where I said the real problem in the game is low energy (no energy included) high damaging attacks. This is where things went down hill. No low energy attacks for god damage = no donks. I have noticed in the past two sets at least a lot of the pokemon future higher energy cost, which means MAYBE they are moving back towards this. Donking isn’t a game.

          Turn one Gyarados exist now, I don’t see your point there.

          Donphan will stay in check due to Gdos. Yanmega will stay in check due to Luxray. And Gyarados…..Well, it’s Gyarados.

          People were upset when TCPI/ Nintendo announced NO trainers on turn one way back when. No matter what someone will always complain.

        • Anonymous  → Anonymous

          yet you forget. decks like uxie donk, they dont use 1 attack for god damage. psychic restore does a base of 20! its cause they COMBINE cards to make it better. synergy. 4 pluspower splus a belt makes for a higher damage attack. and those are cards every deck can play. i admit that sp’s are overpowered(particulary garchomp c lv x who has a great pokepower and a great atatck) with the sp engine. also lets see what set did BTS come out in? platinum. whats et did the sp engine come out in? platinum. those cards were purposely put in the same set to handle a balance. candy and BTS kept stage 1 and stage 2 decks going and the sp engine kept sp’s going. and to say that stage 2’s are dead is so false. speedpluff, magnezone/machamp, magerock, vilegar, vilepluff those are decks that are great but run stage 2s. i do agree some cards are overpowered. but also you have to see they overpower stage 2s(gengar SF, machamp Sf, magnezone prime.) and stage 1’s(gyrados(who i hate, 130m hp stage 1 hitting 90 for nothing!),donphan prime, scizor prime,) and basics(garchomp c lv x, luxray gl lv x, sableye,), they overpower a few from each stage for a reason. also speed and disruption are key strategies. think of it! this game is a strategy like real life strategies, i spend a lot of my time play strategy games. but look at the real world. isnt thier speed(in soccer speed is crucial) disruption and the like are strategies! they should be represented in a strategy game!

        • tim h  → Anonymous

          Just saying, there is a pluspower errata which makes it discard rather than attatch. You no longer get them back.

    • Kyle Madison  → Anonymous

      everything u said makes perfect sense. Nintendo ruined pokemon. Wizards of the coast had it right to begin with. Why do u think magic is still doing so incredibly well?

      • Michael Peter Sison  → Kyle

        I agree. Unless it was about money, I still don’t understand why Nintendo had to handle the TCG themselves. I mean, WotC had a lot of experience in handling M:TG. I’m not a fan of SP-based decks, and I personally feel that BTS and SP ruined the game play of the TCG. Wasn’t the TCG made to simulate the core idea of the video games – that is, collecting and evolving Pokémon and making them battle against each other? Pokémon SP kind of ruined the point of evolution, and the TCG became a bit like Yu-Gi-Oh!. I guess what I mean is that I believe the evolution concept was what made the Pokémon TCG unique to other trading card games, and with BTS and SP in the current format, you couldn’t really feel that in the game play.

        • Kyle Madison  → Michael

          I am sure it was about money, and it still is. Nintendo releases sets much faster than wizards of the coast ever did. A lot of cards are reprinted, or just given a different name. I don’t so much have a problem with that, but one thing that is rather annoying is OHKOs. After not playing the game for 7 years and coming back, it was really a trip to see a pokemon that can do 80 damage to who ever it wants with basically one energy card. The way the game is played today in comparison to how it was played in the glory days is so much different. Maybe I am just complaining because I have not been as successful in my play as I once was in the past, but I really do think the game has come down to a bit more luck rather than skill. It’s all about who can set up that first Garchomp C, and then you rarely see the opponent coming back. Sure, it can happen, but it’s rare. I completely agree with ofr3ako. The game is not going to become worse because of being able to use trainers on your first turn; it has been becoming worse because of the low energy high damage attacks. :/

    • froggy25  → Anonymous

      “Lets talk about RAIN DANCE BLASTOISE before Wizards had to errata and ban the deck from Tournies. ”
      Not in my memories.

        • froggy25  → Anonymous

          I play since the beginning, and Blastoise from Base Set has never been banned.

          Maybe in France it was different from the US, but I highly doubt it.

  3. Anonymous

    Plus Powers get discarded now meaning no late game power. Tomb? Turn one Collector?

  4. David Burnett

    Rule change=me not playing competitivly any more. :( I might have to become a collector or go underground and have underground tournaments at the league that I go to. Everyone there hates the format right now enough already. >:(

  5. David Burnett

    Rule change=me not playing competitivly any more. :( I might have to become a collector or go underground and have underground tournaments at the league that I go to. Everyone there hates the format right now enough already. >:(

    • Ron Routhier  → David

      DITTO. Regionals will be my daughter’s and mine last tournament. PUSA really has no clue. I will be selling all my cards, and maybe start playing Magic TG. They seem to have a steady rotation, and you’re not thrown off be any crazy rule changes in the middle of the season. Plus you actually win cash at tournaments, not packs filled with useless cards.

      • Anonymous  → Ron

        The Magic TCG is pretty fun. I’m not gonna sell my Pokemon cards or anything, because they bring back good memories. But these new rules ARE really dissapointing. Sabledonk is going to be way popular, as well as Shuppet & Uxie Donk (<—– Shuppet is much better than Uxie. Why people use Uxie instead, I don't know). Pokemon Internatinal is completely clueless to what the community wants.

      • jordan baker  → Ron

        Let’s not overreact before you know what’s really going to happen. There could easily be erratas or a mid-season rotation to sort all of this out.

  6. Matt Piela

    Well, from what i’ve seen there will be a Full Restore card, which might replace Max Potion, maybe.

    Also, I hope with all my power that Vileplume is not cut, Gothilette is an okay card but vileplume is slowly becomming the ‘add to every deck’ line that actually slows down SP. I know these rules will only be active for a few pre-rotation competitions but still… SP is already broken, why break it more?

  7. michael newman

    i think there was quite a large advantage to the person going second that “lost” the coin flip, donk decks didnt work so well if your opponent had trainers to increase the number of benched pokemon. now if you win the coin flip you actually have an advantage. i think making it so both players can only use 1 trainer/supporter/stadium in their first turn because then donks would be prevented by both players having chance to grab a few basics from thier deck

  8. BB2Si

    I can definitely see Pokemon enforcing another ban at this rate. If Sableye is as powerful as it is now with rule changes then it’s definitely a card that could see fire in the near future. (Burn them)

  9. jordan baker

    A mid-season rotation would solve this problem. They did it in Japan, they could definitely do it here.

    • Anonymous  → jordan

      Did they? When did they rotate and from what to what? I’d love to hope that if we copy all of Japan’s policies that we could copy that too

      • jordan baker  → Anonymous

        This past fall they had a mid-season rotation to a HGSS-on format. I could definitely see that happening here because it would make a lot more sense. All of the rule changes appear to point in this direction.

        What is the point in changing the text of rare candy if BTS is still in format?

        • DrMime  → jordan

          I kind of wonder why they haven’t announced an HGSS-on rotation for the future already, if they’re thinking about it for May-June mid-season. The cynical side of me says they’re still trying to squeeze out some sales from the DP & Platinum product they still have on the shelves (Charizard blisters left, anyone?). But maybe they have something else in mind?

        • jordan baker  → DrMime

          They would NEVER announce something like that early. If they do a mid-season rotation it will be announced just before it happens in order to keep selling the old product. There is a reason they still package platinum packs in the new tins. They want to get rid of that stuff while they can.

        • DrMime  → jordan

          So let’s say they were to rotate in between Regs and Battle Roads–how many weeks of advance notice before BRs would they give?

        • jordan baker  → DrMime

          I have no idea, but battle roads is suppose to be all about testing anyways. It would make sense to announce the rotation after regionals/once BW becomes legal.

        • Matthew Riddle  → jordan

          I think the main difference is that The Pokemon Company is more concerned about the health of the game, thus the mid-season rotation, than the Pokemon Company International, which seems to be more concerned about # of sets released and staying within budget (thus cutting prizes each year).

  10. stephen shirley

    this means uxie donk is an almost unbeatable deck i think if they do a mid season rotation they should do platinum onwards not cutting sp and then at the end of the season they do rr onwards

    • Anonymous  → stephen

      Shuppet Donk is superior to Uxie Donk. Though 10 more damage doesn’t seem like much, it can be a game changing difference.

    • Joshua Pikka  → stephen

      no the rule changes actually kill Uxie donk. Plus Powers now do not get attached to a Pokemon, so now they don’t go back in the deck.

      But some form of Sabledonk will still be unbeatbale

  11. Ron Routhier

    Your opinions are right on the the money, along with 95% of the Pokemon community. TCPI didn’t take into account the majority of what the players want, which they never do. That’s why this is going to hurt the game by not only having a lot of people stop playing altogether, but when new players see how they change the rules and cards at a whim, it will make people second guess beginning a Pokemon TCG playing “career”.
    Perhaps kids should just stick to the video games and save their money on junk cards and very questionable rules.

  12. DrMime

    Great video Josh, thanks for speaking out so clearly on this issue. And special thanks for spelling out both the short- and long-term downsides of the T1 T/S/S rule. I think we’re all concerned about a future where deck design will be dominated either by engineering the T1 donk or preventing it. Or both. Myself, I’m running four Sableye and four Spiritomb from now on. How crazy is that?!

    And how do the Japanese deal with this? They already have the post-rotation format–is it all donks I wonder?

      • DrMime  → jordan

        I guess my question was, what fraction of players in Japan play T1 Zekrom/Pachi/Shaymin? And what fraction stack their decks with basics to make sure Zekrom doesn’t only see one basic?

  13. Tom Contello

    i dont understand the big deal about trainers on first turn. I have played the card game since fossil, and the rules were ALWAYS whoever wins the coin flip can go first. I played like that forever and it was perfectly fine, the game was in its prime then. Im all for this change.

  14. Derek Coontz

    This is all really worrying to me. I hope something happens soon to fix all this mayhem but..
    All I really have to say right now is.. It’s a rough time to be a Pokemon TCG player..

  15. michael flora

    is anyone realizing that these rules are going to be better for black and white, they suck for platinum, DP, and HGSS, but for black and white it will most likely help the game out, personally i wasnt too happy about the sp crap, so slowing the game down like it use to be during wizards of the coast era (ive been playing since base set) will be more appealing to retro pokemon collectors who dont play because they hate the current format (so manyyy people like that) and players who are willing to play a good game with modified rules, every good game has gone through its phases, magic has also changed things up over the years and personally i love where it is right now, pokemon just needs to work on things and trust me, if you really love the game youll stick with it

    • Ron Routhier  → michael

      Nobody is disputing these rules are going to be better for black and white, and they suck for platinum, DP, but that’s the problem RIGHT NOW!! Regionals is less than two weeks away, and Nationals will be here before you know it.

      And let’s not dodge a major issue with many of us PokeDads and collectors out there. There is a MAJOR financial shortfall if a mid-season rotation is announced just 3 weeks before Nationals or worlds. We won’t be able to get aything back for the cards we invested in, and Pokemon expects us to keep shelling out money for crap sets like COL, and incomplete sets like the upcoming B&W. In case TCPI didn’t notce, the World economies are going through miserable times right now, and Pokemon cards will be the first thing households get rid of to maintain some other form of disposable income.

      All we want is consistency. Not a seven set rotation one year, no rotation another year, a mid-season rotation to bail out all the dumb ideas TCPI comes up with another year. That’s why Pokemon will always be #3 on the TCG Gaming chart behind Yuh-Gi-Oh and MTG. Pokemon attracts kids more than any other TCG, but kids (and parents) get driven away quickly when we see just how flawed the game has become. Isn’t there a reason why more adults play MTG and Yuh-Gi-Oh than Pokemon? We parents are the ones footing the bills here, not the nine and ten year old kids you market your cartoons and toys to.

  16. Joshua Pikka

    I love my buddy J-wittz but this time I think he’s over-reacting a little.

    The people at TPCI aren’t stupid, they know whats going on. They know that people are going to play Sableye with a bunch of trainers. Lets not rush to judgement.

    We still haven’t seen an official rulebook, just a sheet of paper. There still could be a rotation.

    Since we don’t know, lets not be henny penny and say the sky is falling. It does more harm than good.

    I have faith in TPCI, even though they are far from perfect.

    • Anonymous  → Joshua

      The problem is, this is a sheet of paper that tens of thousands of children are going to read coming into the game. It’s an official announcement, and taking it back now will further add to the confusion. I’ve been playing the game since base set, and honestly I don’t think TCPi understands the gravity of the rule changes. Japan doesn’t even understand the changes with their format.

      Pokemon has never announced a mid-season rotation before, and if it was part of their plan, they could have been kind enough to announce it along with the rule change. I don’t think they came into it with a plan at all, I think they just copied the rules that Japan has been using, with no strong regard to the format. Even if their plan was “let’s release these rules and see what the community say about them”, then I’m doing my part of expressing my opinion.

      I never said the sky was falling, but just said that these issues need to be explained and fixed as soon as possible. I think that’s reasonable, and it might even bring awareness to the issue that TCPi probably doesn’t even realize. I think that it’s not unreasonable to say that the players of the Pokemon Trading Card Game are underrepresented (Call of Legends, Trophies cut to Medals, States players still haven’t gotten the medals, no ratings updates for months). If anything, a little more representation would be extremely nice. When Wizards of the Coast owned the game, they used to have a text chat with the people who ran the game every few months, where people made suggestions to balance the game and ways to change the format. We don’t have this open dialogue discussion anymore–it’s something I really hope that by contacting TCPi we could gain again.

      And besides, even in another format, the fact is that no card game should give 100% advantage to a coin flip. It’s bad game design, and I’d rather see that fixed first. It’s currently the way Japan plays, and it’s a bad decision in my opinion.

      I hope for our sake that Pokemon does have a plan like you say, but their track record leads me to believe that they don’t.

    • Anonymous  → Joshua

      i have faith that sometime a person will get it right. franklin roosevelt helped the US out of the depression by useing a football tactic. the tactic was if this plan doesnt work try another plan. and keep trying until we find one that works. and like j-wittz said, they might just do this to see what we think. if we dont say anything they’ll think we like the rules. complaining si part of human nature.

    • Ron Routhier  → Joshua

      I made that exact same point on PokeGym, and nobody could tell me where TPCI has officially announced these rules are in effect.
      But I do think the people at TPCI have no regard for the players, just their wallets, which will always ruin the game longterm and drive more and more people away.

  17. Saturn

    The ONLY reason people are panicking this is because Diamond and Pearl / SP are STILL in format and they have a right to be. When these rules came into play in japan FORMAT WAS HGSS and on which makes the game work wonderful again. Look at it this way and you will see why people are concerned…

    Point 1: What is the point of changing rare candy when broken time-space is around and can be played on turn 1? Rare candy now is solely used to keep from getting sniped from Garchomp C in meta (of course attacking too) but waiting a turn to evolve it defeats that and Garchomp C can kill it. (errata favors SP not prevent donk)

    Point 2: Sable eye issue, you ALWAYS go first, you have 50% chance to KILL your opponent before their turn starts. So you get a scenario like below

    :EXAMPLE: turn 1- Your opponent is going first because the poke’ body says so with Sable eye. You have a lone spiritomb active. They have a Collectors in their hand with a Crobat G. They use Collectors they pull out Crobat G, Unown Dark, and Uxie. Flash Bite you twice, use unown D’s power to get the energy needed for Overconfident and hit you for 40.That is game…>_> And that is even WITH Spiritomb trainer block and once again (favors non-evolution decks and even Luxchomp can’t beat this all the time) …

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