It seems a little strange to have a new set release already, with only one tournament being played since Plasma Blast came out for the majority of players, but here we are with Legendary Treasures coming out and adding new spice to a format that we barely got to play in that was just starting to reach any type of developed form.
For those who don’t know, Legendary Treasures is largely a reprint set composed of cards from the Black and White block, mashed together with Japan’s Shiny Collection and sprinkled with a few new cards. Overall the set is very impressive, giving us reprints to key EX’s and beautiful new artwork to the best cards of the Black and White block.
Here is a list of impact cards coming from the new set:
Gyrados is a 130 HP Stage 1 Water Pokemon. It will be used for its Howling Rampage attack which does 20 damage times the number of prize cards both players have taken. This attack is distinct from Shaymin EX’s Revenge Blast attack in that you also need to take prizes yourself to hit the big damage, and thus it cannot solely be relied on as a comeback card.
I think Gyrados will be best paired with something that can take early prizes for you before transitioning to Gyrados for the late game. Ideally you will want to take 4 prizes yourself, and from there in combination with your opponent’s prizes Gyrados can do 160 damage if they take 4 prizes or 180 damage if they take a fifth prize. These are both important numbers as the latter OHKO’s everything relevant, and the former can do so with aide from damage manipulators like Silver Bangle or Hypnotoxic Laser.
One concern for Gyrados is Magikarp’s 30 HP. Donks will be less of an issue with the new first turn rules, but a Laser with Virbank City Gym in play will still get a donk, and if you can’t get Mr. Mime out, your Magikarp’s will be sitting for dead against snipe attacks.
The backbone of the U.S. National Championship winning deck is back as Gothitelle from Emerging Powers is reprinted in this set. The return of its Magic Room Ability marks the return of Ability based Item locking, which adds something new to the format that was missing for a few months.
The Gothitelle/Accelgor combination is probably dead with the existence of Virizion EX and Genesect EX in the meta game now, but other slower Gothitelle setups like pairing it with Celebi EX or Gardevoir could have viability with the catcher nerf and no more fear of donks on your little Gothita and Ralts.
This card is going to be weirdly positioned in the new format. Its Cursed Drop attack which allows you to place 4 damage counters is certainly good, but it does take a Psychic Energy which doesn’t make it an easy inclusion for every deck as it has to be actively teched in. The Dark weakness also may be troublesome for the card as Darkrai EX, Absol, and the soon to be released Yvetal EX will all easily OHKO it.
Still, being able to snipe around Mr. Mime to finish off Pokemon with 130-140 damage on them is certainly something to consider, so Chandelure EX will probably find its way into the meta in some form.
Spritomb will be a very interesting card for the game. Its Ability Sealing Scream prevents players from using Ace Spec cards, and its attack Hex Draw allows you to shuffle in your hand and draw cards equal to the number of cards in your opponent’s hand, which can add consistency to more decks.
It’ll be interesting to see how much Spritomb is played. If Spritomb finds its way into too many decks players might need to consider dropping Ace Specs from their decks entirely if in the majority of a player’s matchups the Ace Specs just become dead cards. By the same token, Ace Specs are just one card so it won’t kill a deck’s consistency much to still include it, and if you’re playing against other decks without Ace Specs and Spiritomb doesn’t find its way into play, having an Ace Spec while your opponent does not could also create an advantage for you.
The non-EX Cobalion from NVI is also reprinted in this set, which gives more strength to Klinklang then it had last format. While Klinklang certainly took a hit last format, one still managed to make it to Top 8 at Fort Wayne Regional Championships.
I am still not really sold on Klinklang as an archetype without access to the Shift Gear Klinklang, but getting this card back in the mix certainly improves the deck from where it was this format.
What makes this 110 HP worthwhile? It is a Basic Pokemon with the Round attack, which gives you an easy way to fill your bench with Round Pokemon, allowing to maximize the Round damage more easily. More interestingly, we get Meloetta EX in line with the rule changes, which will make it more difficult for your opponent to bring benched Meloetta’s from your bench making them overwhelmingly safer.
Seismatoad, perhaps the most looked at main attacker for a Round deck was also reprinted in this set which means Meloetta EX won’t be left in more difficult to setup Round decks like Exploud.
Overall, I think there are better massive attack damage gimmicks than Round (G-Booster, Black Ballista, and Tool Drop), so I don’t expect Round to be too played if at all in this format, but it is neat to finally be able to build the Round deck to the best of its Ability.
I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with this card. I hated the card when it was played in Durant, but I liked having it to create my Sableye’Garbodor deck for Nationals. In this past format we could only remove Special Energy with our Item cards, but now Basic Energy are in danger too.
I don’t think it will find its way into too many decks, but Hammertime will probably see some play in the new format with this reprint.
Most people seem to be clamoring that Darkrai EX will become stronger with this card, and it might, but I don’t really see it that way as Switch and Float Stone accomplished the same thing in making Darkrai decks as good as they ever were.
I think Virizion EX variants benefit the most from this reprint, as they naturally have Energy that is left on Virizion EX after using Emerald Slash that could be better utilized on their other Pokemon. With Energy Switch, if a player is able to move those two Energy off of Virizion EX with Energy Switch, they can take a more aggressive approach to the game in which one Emerald Slash might be all the player needs to be setup. Additionally, Energy Switch makes streaming G-Booster easier, and can allow the deck to switch up its attacking options on the fly.
Lastly, Ho-Oh EX can return as a deck archetype as Energy on Ho-Oh can be moved to other attackers once again. Not sure how great Ho-Oh will do in the new format, but its definitely a good card and I wouldn’t be shocked to see a Rebirth of these decks.
There isn’t a ton new in this set, but the new and returning stuff that we do get are all pretty strong cards that should serve to make a very distinct format from the one that we just completed.
With solid pull rates, and most of the rares being good, this has probably been my favorite set to open packs from as you generally get good playable cards in these packs. There are a few of the reprinted cards I never bought when they came out, so it has been nice to fill out these holes in my collection, and the new art on the cards I already have are nice additions to the collection which will make it easier to build a breadth of decks from these formats after rotation to play again for old times sake.
I am really excited about this new format, and can’t wait to start playing in the upcoming League Challenges and City Championships in the next few months!