On Friday, April 7, the Pokemon TCGO Versus Ladder reset, bringing an end to another season. However with one season’s end, another season is just beginning, fresh with new rewards. For April 2017, the reward is a tasty Hoopa EX card.
Ignore Your Opponent’s Weaknesses with Hoopa EX
Hoopa EX proves himself to be a very useful card, but not for the damage he can do. True he can deal out 100 unmitigated damage. But Hyperspace Fury is a three energy move and you have to discard two energy afterwards. For me, the biggest benefit that Hoopa EX contributes is with its ability, Scoundrel Ring.
If you play Hoopa EX from your hand to the bench, Scoundrel Ring will allow you to search your deck for 3 Pokemon-EX cards, and add them to your hand. If your bench still has open spaces, you can fill it with the newly drawn Pokemon EX cards. This allows you to control the pace of the game by getting your second and potentially third wave of attackers ready for battle. Better yet, if those other Pokemon EX cards have abilities that trigger on entry, then you can set up for a pretty decent wombo-combo.
As mentioned earlier, Hyperspace Fury is a decent attack that does some great damage. Being able to deal 100 damage that cannot be resisted or reduced is nothing to scoff at. However, having to discard two energy immediately afterwards somewhat limits its appeal. I can see there being a situation where you are just 100 damage away from defeating your opponent, then sure send out Hoopa EX to finish the job. But odds are you could have just dealt the 100 damage with another Pokemon. Then you would not need to discard your two energy.
Other Ladder Rewards
One interesting reward for this cycle, that supplements Hoopa EX, is Crobat.
Crobat has an ability that you can use if you play Crobat from your hand. Using Surprise Bite, you can put 3 damage counters on an enemy Pokemon. Notice that since you are placing damage counters directly on the enemy, you can avoid resistance.
His attack move, Skill Dive, offers the same result for a one energy cost. Crobat seems to revolve around doing pure damage and utterly disrupting your opponent’s bench. Another great thing about Crobat is its free retreat cost. So when things get pretty dire, you can switch out with no worries whatsoever.
This ladder cycle is one of the more interesting ones in recent memory. I’m not the biggest fan of Hoopa EX. But most of my criticism comes from Hyperspace Fury. if you have multiple methods of gathering discarded energy (which we all should) then Hoopa EX is not that bad. The best draw in my opinion is his Scoundrel Ring ability. I love being able to search my deck, and finding the exact Pokemon EX card I need.
However my favorite part of this ladder cycle is the Crobat card. I enjoy playing cards that ignore resistance and offer just pure damage. Crobat does everything I like, for a low one energy cost. In actuality, only the Hoopa EX will probably be useful in standard. This is again because it allows you the opportunity to draw the Pokemon EX card that you need.
In order to collect these cards, you need to win versus matches and collect versus points. You get 10 points for a win, and 15 points for a win where you had disadvantage against your opponent. The rewards are broken down as follows:
- First Tier – 210 Points
- Second Tier – 690 Points
- Third Tier – 2000 Points – Unlocks Holofoil Trainer Card. This cycle, the end of tier 3 rewards a full art N card!
What do you think about Hoopa EX? Are you ready to relentlessly punish your opponent’s benched Pokemon? Or do you purely summon your own Pokemon EX and leave Hoopa EX on the bench. Let me know all about it in the comments section below.
Good luck fellow trainers!