Bodhi’s Top 5 cards from Pokemon Sun & Moon!
G’day everyone! Welcome to the old (new) Ace Trainer Australia! Before today, our last article was over 8 months ago, and although we have been in the business of professional Pokémon TCG reporting and statistics keeping, we haven’t made a solid dive into content creation on our Website! As far as announcements go, tonight will be the full announcement of our new content creators and with Sun & Moon just one week away, we are going to have some great content on all our platforms before too long!
This article is only going to be a small introduction, giving you my top 5 cards from the Pokémon Sun & Moon TCG set to wet your appetites for more content in the coming weeks and months! 100% of our content will remain free to view, and provide expert analysis from Australia and around the world!
As a quick aside before delving into the cards, I want to give you the criteria I have selected when determining what are my top 5 cards from the set! This is: Competitive Viability, Current Hype, Personal Experience and of course Opinion! If you agree or disagree with the list, in any way, I would love to hear what you guys consider to be the top cards in the set and I look forward to debating with you soon!
Now, onto the article!
Honourable mentions: Lurantis GX, Tsareena, Solgaleo GX & Nest Ball. These cards have landed just outside of my top 5, but would I have made this a top 7 or a top 10 article would have certainly warranted an inclusion! Originally at my number 5 slot, Lurantis GX has pushed itself out of contention on the current hype category, receiving many negative reviews from players all over. This does not stop the card from being good however, but to maintain my criteria the cards must fit what I have set out! Tsareena and Solgaleo GX have received mixed hype from players, but fail to sway my opinion and I remain sceptical about their competitive viability! Nest Ball rounds off my honourable mentions, a card that will see play, but has received minimal hype and I do not consider it better than any cards I have in the top 5!
#5 Tauros GX
(C)(C) 20＋This attack deals +10 damage for each damage counter on this Pokémon.
(C)(C) GX 30× This attack deals +30 damage for each damage counter on this Pokémon. (During a game, you can use only one GX attack)
Tauros GX begins my top 5 list now! With 3 attacks that only cost a single double colourless energy, the card has an immense amount of versatility available to it. Damage based on damage counters has been a popular card creation tactic for Pokémon over the years, where some of the most popular and notable Pokémon of sets have been given this same kind of attack (See, Black and White base set)! Tauros GX is much more interesting than the Reshiram’s and Zekrom’s of old however, as it can survive much easier with cards like fighting fury belt and assault vest to protect it from being knocked out in one hit. Players who play multiple copies of Double Colourless in their decks might very well look to Tauros GX in some capacity to capitalise on the strong GX attack that Tauros possesses. Being able to use cards such as Ninja Boy have also been discussed with this card, after your active Pokémon has taken damage, you can Ninja Boy to Tauros and hit for 100’s of damage with ‘Mad Bull GX’ or ‘Rage’! Tauros GX will see plenty of play in decks going forwards, some early indications seeits inclusion in Yveltal EX/Garbodor decks as well as Decidueye GX decks.
Professor Kukui makes a dive from the top rope into my top 5 list, striking us with a powerful elbow and card draw! A similar, but new professor style card sees two separate effects on the same card like Giovanni’s Scheme! This time, however, you get both effects in one! With Professor Kukui, you are getting card draw and bonus damage, a fantastic inclusion to any deck that is looking for that little bit of extra damage to take consistent knock outs! Cards and decks that can potentially use this deck will be two separate varieties, either a deck that is relying on a Pokémon’s attack to set up that doesn’t do enough damage, or a deck looking to take early knockouts when your opponent has yet to set up their bench. Professor Kukui will find its way in plenty of decks from Mega Scizor, Decidueye, Yveltal, Lurantis, Waterbox, Umbreon, and plenty more going forward!
Another Pokémon card that swings from up high, Oranguru swings it way majestically into the number 3 spot on my list. With an ability based around card draw for faster decks, the ability to withstand late game N’s to 1 card for ANY deck, and with a solid colourless attack there is a LOT to love about this card. In my mind, Oranguru has two main reasons why the card is receiving a deserving amount of hype. The first reason is that the card is designed in a way to counter the current metagame, but also withstands all changes in the meta going forward. The card that springs to mind as a crippling card for many aggressive decks is N, which this card is fantastic against as you can reset your hand and give you two extra draws out of a bad spot. However, cards like Judge, Delinquent, Team Skull Grunt, Crushing and Enhanced Hammer are all still popular in the current meta game and aim to deny cards to you and benefit your opponent.
Oranguru makes half a dozen popular meta cards much worse against you, as you have a consistent option every turn of the game to draw out of any locks or disruption your opponent may be playing. I can see players attempting to play Oranguru is almost every deck once the set is released, seeing if and how his draw engine can change the way you play the game. There are plenty of instances where this card will see little to no play, in slower decks that generally rely on larger hand sizes to hold pieces for combos this card will see no play. But, in almost every other instance, this card is a great addition alongside Shaymin EX for effective draw power!
#2 Umbreon GX
You may switch this Pokémon with one of your benched Pokémon.
This attack deals 30 damage to one of your opponent’s benched Pokémon. (Do not apply weakness and resistance for benched Pokémon)
Choose 2 energy cards attached to your opponent’s Pokémon and discard them. (During a game, you can use only one GX attack)
Night Spearing its way into the number two spot is Umbreon GX, the spiritual successor for many to Darkrai EX from Dark Explorers. Umbreon GX at first glance appears to be a relatively simple card, featuring a decent 1 energy attack, a good second attack that does reasonable damage, and a disruptive GX attack. Where the card shines for many players and many people who are diving into the Sun & Moon set is the first evolution of Umbreon, Eevee. Eevee is not a direct reprint, but retains the same ability as an older printing known as ‘Energy Evolution’. Energy Evolution Eevee states that Eevee may evolve (even on turn 1) into the evolution of Eevee that coincides with the energy type you placed on it, giving you a 210 HP Pokémon on the first turn of the game.
The card continues to be threatening with the inclusion of cards that benefit from active positioning, such as Wobbufett from Generations, or Fright Night Yveltal. The card also benefits from the Eevee-evolutions in the Ancient Origins set, allowing Umbreon to hit 180 damage and 30 on a benched target against multiple different threats throughout the game. Being able to partner Umbreon with key Pokémon and create solid lists based on the second attack will set good deckbuilders ahead early in the Sun & Moon format! My personal recommendation is to try the deck with the Eevee evolutions form AOR first, to test how the deck performs with weakness! If you find any other success with this card, I would be interested to hear it, as it feels like a great addition to the deck building pool!
#1 Decidueye GX
Once during your turn, you may put 2 damage counters on one of your opponent’s Pokémon.
Put 3 cards from your discard pile into your hand. (During a game, you can use only one GX attack).
It should come as no surprise to anyone who I have spoken to, to anyone who has seen my video (link), or anyone who has seen my comments online about this card! I absolutely love Decidueye GX, and thus it takes my number 1 spot in the list. Decidueye is a card that is as good because of its surrounds right now. Low HP Pokémon, a meta in a potential state of disarray as 130 new cards (including plenty of great cards) are introduced into the card pool for testing and tournament preparation! Any time an opponent starts with low HP Pokémon (and there are a lot of them), a Decidueye GX deck has the potential to win before your opponent can even draw a card! Decidueye is not just a card for fast decks, although it is my personal belief that the card shines that sort of deck, Decidueye is a great card for slower decks and decks that need a little bit of time to load up. Being able to consistently put 60+ damage on your opponent’s field every turn with abilities is something that Golbat/Crobat decks from a previous format would have adored. The card possesses 240HP, making it immune to being one shot by most decks in the game, and a modest two retreat cost that is easily avoidable in deckbuilding. Decidueye will see plenty of play when the set drops, it is my absolute favourite card of the set and I cannot wait to test it out!
In terms of combinations with the card, I recommend testing out the version I put into video form Latios EX, also trying the combinations of Tauros GX, Lugia EX, Oranguru, Raichu, Yanmega, Vespiquen, Vileplume, etc etc etc. As you can see, it has a load of potential in many different Archetypes and I look forward to hearing your thoughts on Decidueye!
Thankyou everyone who has read my article today, if you like this kind of content then our new Ace Trainer Australia content creation team is going to knock your socks off! Make sure to follow our social media channels on Facebook and Twitter by searching Ace Trainer Australia, and our Youtube channel @ Ace Trainer Australia!
– Bodhi B0ds Cutler “Hopeful Commentator, Professional Player, Content Creator”