As we all know by now, Emerging Powers turned out to be a huge let down. Besides the questionably playable Beartic and Gothitelle, the only definitively good cards in the set are Pokémon Catcher, and, you guessed it, Tornadus. That’s why I figured it would be appropriate to give Tornadus another chance as a COTD.
So lets start with the basics:
Garchomp C LV.X is a Basic Colorless Pokémon with 110HP and the unmatched ability to snipe for 80 on turn 2.
Whoops, wrong card.
As we all know, Garchomp C LV.X completely dominated the last 2 formats, and Tornadus shares many similarities with it. They both have a very strong 110HP, Colorless typing, and now with Pokémon Catcher, the ability to deal 80 damage anywhere on the board. If you ignore Garchomp’s nice Poké-Power, then Tornadus has 3 huge advantages over Garchomp.
1. T1 Potential. Along with Pachirisu and Shaymin, it is possible to power up a “Hurricane” on T1 the same way you would power up a Zekrom. However, thanks to Double Colorless Energy and Energy Switch, this job is made much easier, taking pressure off of Shaymin and Pachirisu needing to drop 2 Lightning from hand the way Zekrom did.
2. Energy Conservation. Although Garchomp C LV.X could abuse TGI Energy Gain, it could only attach and discard Double Colorless Energies so many times. Many view the ‘downside’ to “Hurricane” as a necessary evil to his amazing attack, but I see it as one of the best parts of his attack because it keeps energy in play.
Move a Lightning down to another Tornadus and you’re ready to go with a DCE next turn. Or move Lightning down to a Zekrom and prepare for a big KO with “Bolt Strike”. Keeping Energy in play is one of the main reasons why ReshiPhlosion is such a great deck, and this is no different. Especially under trainer lock, it can be a game winning tactic.
3. Resistance to Fighting. In a meta full of Donphan, Tornadus will shine in the same vein that Yanmega proved to be an effective wall/counter to it. With cards like Pokémon Catcher and Max Potion, Donphan/Yanmega builds become so much more powerful. With Tornadus resisting Donphan and Zekrom KOing Yanmega, that threat is greatly reduced.
pokebeach.comNow lets step away from the comparison to Garchomp C LV.X and talk more about why Tornadus is so competitive. By now you’ve guessed that he is probably best paired with Zekrom as an alternative attacker that happens to take care of Zekrom’s Donphan problems. Zekrom was already a good deck, winning both Mexico and Canada’s National tournaments.
Back then, Zekrom players had 4 ideal starters: 4 Zekrom. Now, they have an additional 4 ideal starters and access to Pokémon Catcher? The deck just got crazy. Another item worth noting is Tornadus’ light Retreat Cost of 1. Not only does that make it easy to retreat out of effects like Confusion or Beartic’s attack, but it gives you the option to donk with Pachirisu by retreating into it.
I think of Tornadus’ first attack “Energy Wheel” as sort of a wash. You will almost never use it, but it is nice to use on T1 if you whiff the donk but have already dropped a Pachirsu with some energy, setting you up for at least a T2 “Hurricane”.
A few minor drawbacks are his Weakness and damage cap. Lightning Weakness hurts when you are facing a Zekrom that can one shot you after a “Bolt Strike”, or even if you decide to attack into it with “Hurricane”. His damage cap is 80, which, thanks to Pokémon Catcher, is almost irrelevant. Yanmega caps at 70 and no one complains.
All in all, this card just has so much going for it. “6 Prizes in Six Turns” is completely viable via Pokémon Catcher/Junk Arm, it counters what is likely to become a huge deck, and has insane T1 potential. I would expect this to be a huge part of our Meta in the upcoming P!P season. However, due to Weakness and not having a more competitive first attack…