The Top 10 Cards From Black and White That Remind Me Of Base Set

For all of you looking for a nostalgia fix, I think I’ve got one coming up for you. For those of you old enough to remember Base Set, you should have noticed some similarities between Base Set and Black and White, but there may be some cards that you may have overlooked.

There will also be two honorable mentions for those two cards that look like others from Jungle. This article is here to teach players a lesson, but hopefully you’ll figure it out before I give you the answer at the end of the article.

Without further adieu, I give you the top 10 cards from Black and White that remind me entirely too much of Base Set.

10. Zebstrika #42

Now here’s an overlooked card, and I don’t really blame you for overlooking it. It has mediocre bottom stats and mediocre attacks. Two for an attack that, if you flip heads, does 40 damage is terrible, and a second attack that does 70 damage for three, while doing 10 damage to itself is not a very promising card.

Heck, Zebstrika is one of the fastest Pokémon in the video game, and they don’t feel like giving him free Retreat Cost. What’s up with that?

I could see someone messing around with him just because they like zebras, and it possibly making a good deck, but I really don’t see this one taking any championships, or even a City Championship or Battle Roads.

So why is he on this list? Because…

This card reminds me entirely too much of Raichu

pokebeach.comI don’t know if any of you remember this guy, but I bet the collectors know about this card. About eight Raichu cards were accidentally printed with PRERELEASE in the bottom right-hand corner, making it one of the rarest cards to obtain in the entirety of the Pokémon TCG.

However, Zebstrika is not that rare, and I doubt it will ever be, but the similarities between it and Raichu are pretty astonishing. They have the exact same bottom stats, and their HP is off by 10, and the attacks are surprising similar when taking into account power-creep.

For 3 energy, you do 20 damage with a chance of invincibility, and for 4 energy, you do 60 damage with a 50% chance of damaging yourself. It astounds me just how similar these cards are.

9. Klinklang

pokebeach.comKlinklang is arguably a very good card, and I was even thinking of making an awesome deck with it until I heard that Emboar had its phenomenal, cosmic power, Reshiram was also included in the set, and Max Heal wasn’t being printed. I gave up hope on my Steelix/Klinklang deck because of those three reasons.

This card should not be overlooked though, because Shift Gear is a great ability that should remind you of some very good abilities in the past. It also has a pretty decent 140 HP, which is nothing to scoff at, but nothing to be too proud of either.

(Any of you guys remember when we thought 100 HP was amazing? Then we said hello to Wailord ex.)

There are, of course, only certain combinations that you would want to try, but it could be worth some of the combinations, but I wouldn’t count on it due to the hype that fire has been getting.

This card reminds me entirely too much of Venusaur

pokebeach.comWhat else is a bulky Pokémon that can move energy around at its whim? Venusaur from Base Set, of course. Now, it’s not that his ability hasn’t been reprinted before, because it totally has multiple times (Meganium and Sceptile should be enough to prove my point), but the fact is that this ability is actually pretty good.

The ability to move energy around is a major theme in the Zekrom deck floating around right now, and I don’t blame them for using it. Venusaur actually comboed quite nicely with an unexpected friend, Charizard, to prevent Charizard from getting Knocked Out with the used of Pokémon Center, and rearranging the energies attached to Charizard so that he wouldn’t lose them when he got healed. Remember people, combos, combos, combos.

8. Sawk

pokebeach.comA basic of 90 HP, weakness to psychic, Retreat Cost of one, and it does 20 for one and 40 for two. Seems like your standard basic that you wouldn’t really feel comfortable playing with, especially since it’s hitting for a laughable 40 damage as its maximum output.

I don’t really see this card going anywhere, and all I see it doing is looking nice when you tell your friends that you have every card from the Black and White set.

This card reminds me entirely too much of Hitmonchan

pokebeach.comHey, look it’s Hitmonchan. Not only do both of these cards line up by being the group of non-evolving fighting Pokémon from the original Red & Blue versions, their stats are nearly identical when following the trends of the power creep that everybody’s been talking about.

Compare 70 HP to 90 HP, compare the Retreat Costs, compare that psychic weakness, compare their attacks, compare the fact that both of these Pokémon are based on hitting things! This is pretty dang close to being just a reprint of Hitmonchan with a different name.

7. Reuniclus

As we look at Reuniclus, we should already see its potential. His attack isn’t great, but his power is what we look at.

Of course, we also know that we’re going to need to be paired up with someone who can take a hit in this format without immediately being Knocked Out by something commonly used within this format, meaning that Steelix and Scizor are pretty much out of the question with all the hype about Reshiram.

I could see him getting paired with a bulky basic or stage 1 Pokémon that could be picked up and reset fairly quickly with either Seeker or Super Scoop Up to get rid of all of the damage on your Pokémon.

You could also bring about some combination with Serperior to make sure that you heal all of the damage that you took from the previous turn. It’s fickle, but still a possibility.

This card reminds me entirely too much of Alakazam

pokebeach.comRemember this guy? This Pokémon right here made an amazing combination with Mr. Mime, Chansey, and Scoop Up back in the day, making sure that you could tank as long as your resources could hold up to the possible thrashing that Haymaker could through at you.

It was a fairly good deck in the day, making sure that most evolution decks that didn’t rock status conditions couldn’t touch this deck. So, looking back at an older deck may bring about new ideas


6. Professor Juniper

pokebeach.comAlrighty, everybody has already gone over this card so many times that if this discussion was a park playground, I would probably try disinfecting it before I played on it. However, this must be talked about, even though I feel like I’m beating a dead horse (pardon the expression, but at least I didn’t make it Pokémon analogy).

With the ability to be abused to draw a full new hand without the chance of drawing exactly what you but back in when using Judge, PONT, or Copycat can be very appealing.

I know that I’m probably going to be running at least two in each of my decks, but there are situations where I can see people saying that this is a waste of resources, and I will let them have their opinions, as I’ve seen this work in the past. Wait, did I just let the Meowth out of the bag, because…

This card reminds me entirely too much of Professor Oak

pokebeach.comYes, the old Professor Oak. Before he decided to visit you or tell you about his new theory, he was refreshing your hand to seven cards as a humble trainer. This card was used in all decks back in the day, because acceleration was key to making it past Haymaker and setting up before your opponent, as almost all games are determined nowadays.

This card was probably more disastrous as a Trainer (now Item, because Professor Oak is now an Item available at your local PokéMart) than as a Supporter because you could play more than one in a turn, making you either set up amazingly well or deck out quickly. With great power comes great responsibility, and this card has some great power.

5. Energy Retrieval

Just when it seemed that Pokémon was getting rid of all of our recovery cards, they came out with this one. Bringing two basic energy cards to the hand at no cost is absolutely no laughing matter, making this Trainer, excuse me, Item card a great value.

There’s a very simple combo that can be made with this card and Engineer’s Adjustments, but it may not be worth it. However, where this card can truly shine is with any Pokémon that has the power to dance!

(Yes, the Fandango is a dance. Wikipedia never lies ;P)

This card reminds me entirely too much of Energy Retrieval

pokebeach.comHey, look! Same name, same type of card, and almost the exact same effect. This one costs you, but it’s not too bad.

I don’t remember seeing this card getting any play back in the old days, but now that I see it again, I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because we’re discarding more energy in this format, but that’s to be expected with the current power creep. An interesting card that hasn’t seen the light of day since Base Set (not counting Super Energy Retrieval), now comes to you in a easier to use package at no extra cost.

4. Musharna

pokebeach.comHere’s a card that many people have overlooked, and I don’t blame them. It’s a stage one Pokémon where its strongest attack does 90 for two, but the attack requires that the opponent is asleep for this power to work.

There are actually a combo to make this work with Hypno, so this could make a fun league deck, but because this is a deck in a world of 1HKOs, it’s unlikely that it will gain any popularity beyond a fun deck to play with the cards you don’t use. I think I may write up a list for this deck just for fun, but with its flippyness (yes, it’s now a word).

This card reminds me entirely too much of Haunter

pokebeach.comI don’t know if any of you remember this guy, but he was so much fun to play with in the Pokémon TCG video game. Though we all know that sleep is hard to keep, this Pokémon scored me so many KOs that it wasn’t even funny.

A powerful disruptor to those who were unprepared to handle status conditions, even though sleep was flippy, kept most of them in check. You know that 50% invincibility that everyone’s talking about with Cleffa? It came in the form of a 50% chance your opponent has to Scoop Up or switch to get out of the sleep-lock.

I think one of the major things that we have to remember in this format is that special conditions can play a key role in this new format if used properly.

3. Emboar #20

pokebeach.comAh, Emboar. Probably the most hyped Pokémon card of this whole set, and for a good reason, too. With the ability to attach a fire energy to any Pokémon in play, this sets up many combinations with different Pokémon.

If only Flygon were still legal, I would have loved to play a deck with these two, but alas, that is only a Battle Roads dream, and I can’t play. (If someone could represent this deck there, that would be great!)

Everybody’s thinking of Emboar/Magnezone, Emboar/Reshiram, Emboar/Emboar, Legend of Emboar, you name it, it probably has a working combination with Emboar in one way or another.

Okay, maybe I was exaggerating with that last sentence, but you can still see all of the potential that this card has.

This card reminds me entirely too much of Blastoise

pokebeach.comFor those of you who know, this Pokémon card was the first one to bring us energy-acceleration of any kind (not counting DCE, because it’s a regular energy card).

Now, we all know that Emboar just increased Blastoise’s power level over 9000 even more, just because it can attach to any Pokémon instead just Pokémon of the same type, but at the time, if you could set up before Haymaker crippled you, Blastoise could rip through just about any deck.

In a game that was much slower than today’s (anyone who still owns the TCG video game like me should know this), speed was one of your greatest assets, and Blastoise was a great help to get you set up quickly.

2. Revive

pokebeach.comI really do like this card. It may not exactly be the greatest card we have, but when we’re living in a world of Reshiram and Zekrom 1HKOing each other, and they’re both basics. Being able to pull them out of your discard pile and place them directly onto the bench is great for recovering and getting right back into the game when you’re being 1HKO’d.

There’s not really much to talk about with this card, and the only reason I’m even mentioning it is because it has great potential with bulky basics and the only way it would be even better is if you could Rare Candy it that same turn, but I’m pretty sure the rulings don’t allow for it.

This card reminds me entirely too much of Revive

pokebeach.comYep. Pokémon basically reprinted a card that hasn’t been touched since the original card came out in, guess where, Base Set. I’m not insulting Pokémon, but really?

Okay, to be fair, they did print Max Revive in Gym Challenge, but I don’t know what they were thinking waiting so long to reprint a card that had a lot of potential.

I’ll give them some credit though; the original Revive was terrible, mainly because Gust of Wind would allow your opponent to take care of that brand new benched Pokémon by taking it out in one hit. Sorry to say, but it was because of that one card that Revive was never truly able to shine.

1. Pokédex

pokebeach.comHey, look! One of the worst trainers that was released in this set! Is there any reason to be playing this card? I don’t think so, and I believe that many people will agree with me because Research Record is better than this card, even though, to quote Chris Fulop, “It doesn’t dig as deep.”

With that taken into account, why did I even bother bringing up this card in the article? Well, you can probably guess right now that it’s because…

This card reminds me entirely too much of Pokédex

pokebeach.comAh, Pokédex. Why did you return? We didn’t use you at all when you came out, except maybe, just maybe, when we were tinkering with our decks, and when we got other Pokédexes (I think that’s the properly plural), they gave us a free shuffle and a rearrangement, not to mention PokéHandy, which turned out to be a staple in many a speed deck.

With the reprints getting better and better, why did we have to keep it the same as Base Set’s? Why?

Honorable Mentions

These Pokémon weren’t in Base Set, but they do clearly remind me of cards that were printed in the Jungle set. I hope by now you’ve seen what I’ve been trying to teach you all by showing you the similarities between these new cards and some old ones, but I wont’ straight out tell you until the end. You have two more chances to figure out what it is. Here we go.


pokebeach.comThis card has been getting some hype, and I’m not entirely sure that it’s warranted, but it’s definitely a card to look at. With the ability to search out a card for you to place in your hand for one energy, this could play out well, but that’s not what the community is clamoring about.

Foul Play requires two C energy, or, you know, a Double Colorless Energy to use any of the Defending Pokémon’s attacks against it. How is this good? Well, let’s think about it.

The ruling states that if you don’t have any R Energy attached to Zoroark and you use Reshiram’s attack Blue Flare, you don’t have to discard any energy attached to Zoroark. Hot dang, I’ll take two. Wait a minute…

This card reminds me entirely too much of Clefable

pokebeach.comSurprisingly, these cards are very identical in bottom-stats and the attack they have in common does pretty much the exact same thing. Clefable’s Metronome was the bane of Charizard, allowing Clefable to hit Charizard for 100 damage at no cost.

And since PlusPower existed, you could essentially 1HKO Charizard without discarding any energy. Now, you can mimic this strategy with Zoroark. Same premise, just replace Charizard with Reshiram or Zekrom and replace Clefable with Zoroark. You see?

You’ve just created a great counter to the some of the hardest hitters in the current game by using a combo that has been in place for a long time now. And the fact that it only requires a DCE and a PlusPower to use, it could be the next great tech.

However, you still have to look out for Donphan, but that should be too much trouble if this is just a tech.


pokebeach.comI love this little guy. Probably my favorite Normal-type Pokémon outside of the first 150. And he’s not too shabby in card form either. With 90HP and weakness to fighting, it seems like it could be a bad card, but when you see that it has an attack called “Do the Wave”, you know you’re in for a treat.

For a DCE (seems familiar, no?), you get to do 20 damage times the number of Pokémon on your Bench. This means that you can do a maximum of 100 damage before adding anything else. Not a bad trade, now is it? Now, because I said an attack named “Do the Wave” gives away something inherently powerful, you will probably have noticed that…

This card reminds me entirely too much of Wigglytuff

pokebeach.comThe card from Jungle, doing up to 60 damage for three energy, or a DCE plus one. A great card that started rocking the TCG because of its sheer damage output. (You have to remember, 60 damage was a lot back then.)

It had almost the same problems as Cinccino has right now (it’s weak to fighting and its damage output is based on the bench), but where Cinccino has to worry about getting 1HKO’d, Wigglytuff had to worry about not getting 1HKO’d and your opponent not dragging a weakling on your bench for a cheep KO with Gust of Wind.

It was a card with quite a few problems, but people still found ways to make it work.

In Conclusion

I hope you all have learned what I was trying to teach you, and that was that you can get some really good ideas by looking into the past. I mean, sure, about half of these cards that I reviewed aren’t very good, and I doubt that they will be at all, but being able to recognize similarities between old and new cards, especially ones that have been used successfully, can make a world of difference when building competitive decks.

And because I know some of you SixPrizes members tend downvote if there isn’t a decklist, here’s that fun league deck with Musharna and Hypno that I talked about earlier in the article. Enjoy!

Pokémon – 21

4 Munna BW
4 Musharna BW
2 Drowzee HGSS
2 Hypno HGSS
4 Cleffa CoL
1 Pichu HGSS
2 Zorua BW
2 Zoroark BW

Trainers – 26

2 Energy Exchanger
3 Professor Juniper
1 Energy Retrieval
1 Flower Shop Lady
4 Pokémon Communication
2 Pokémon Collector
4 Dual Ball
3 Professor Oak’s New Theory
3 Junk Arm
3 PlusPower

Energy – 13

10 P
3 Double Colorless

(Note: This list was written in about 10 minutes. It should still be pretty consistent, without considering the flips.)

Reader Interactions

16 replies

  1. Anonymous

    Reuniclus and some legend pokemon with indigo plateau could be an interesting deck.

  2. stephen shirley

    nice idea i know iwasn’t [playing when base set was released but i have got the game boy game and pokedex is pretty good

  3. Lee

    Awesome stuff, Logan. The fact that this article exists makes me so happy in that Pokemon is reverting back to my favorite cards and decks.

  4. John

    Great article and I will like to test that deck. Although I had another idea to test before that. Overall great read and nice job remembering old stuff. Also potion reminds me of potion and switch reminds me of switch and plus power reminds me of plus power.

    • Anonymous  → John

      The only reason I didn’t review those is because they have been printed in other sets for a long, long time. Most of what I have pointed out above haven’t.

      • John  → Anonymous

        I know, I was joking…no harm done. Although I think the best way you could have also mention the nerfing of rare candy. Now everything time you will see a rare candy you will see a pokemon breeder. Considering that’s the name of your channel……..

  5. tim h

     With your decklist, if you do use pichu to set up your bench, You’ll probably want 2 munna and 3 drowzee. So I suggest a 3-3 line, not 2-2.

    • Anonymous  → tim

      If you’re talking about the Hypno line, if I were to make it a 3-3, I’d probably take out a Pichu and a Dual Ball. Otherwise, I don’t exactly know what you’re saying.

      Remember my note though. If I had time to test it, I probably would have a much different list. However, since it’s finals, go ahead and change it at your whim if you so desire.

  6. Joshua Hall

     It’s like they’re starting the game all over again…but hey, it’s been a while, so it’s all cool.

    I wish Zoroark’s move was called Metronome…but we can still do the waveeeee just like before.

  7. Ed Mandy

    I remember playing Energy Retrieval in haymaker.  It wasn’t great, but it helped you get the color you needed at the time, and it was Item Findable.  Now, the card is excellent without the extra cost.  Revive is similar, but this one was pretty much unusable with the extra cost/drawback.  Not it can be quite good for the right deck.

    Thumbs up for the premise of the article alone!

  8. Adam Capriola

    Gotta love nostalgia… great job with the article Logan, it turned out awesome.  

    Pokemon Breeder would be one more card that was kinda revived because of the B/W rule changes, but I think you nailed everything pretty spot on.

    • Anonymous  → Adam

       True, as magneto1992 pointed out, but since Rare Candy wasn’t printed in this set, I couldn’t do it.  Should have put another honorable mention though.

      And thank you very much!

  9. Travis Yeary

    “Yes, the old Professor Oak.  Before he decided to visit you or tell you
    about his new theory, he was refreshing your hand to seven cards as a
    humble trainer.”


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