Sun and Moon Forbidden Light GX Review
Hello everyone and welcome to the first half of my analysis of the GXs from Forbidden Light, the new set that is released at the beginning of May. This time I’ll be taking a look at Greninja-GX, Naganadel-GX and Ultra Necrozma-GX. I have decided to take a little bit more of an in depth look at these GXs hence me splitting them up so I can look in a little more detail. I will also be taking a look at the other three GXs, Xerneas, Yveltal and Zygarde in the future so stay tuned to hear my thoughts on them in the near future!
Many people were concerned when Greninja-GX was announced, before we got full details of the card, however on release of those details the card is not too problematic in my eyes. 230HP Stage 2 is pretty standard for Stage 2 GXs these days. Two retreat is abnormally large for Greninja but I think this is completely fair as giving this guy free retreat may have made it much more splashable into the current Greninja archetype which would not have gone down well. Grass Weakness is a pretty big downside since Golisopod is still floating around in the meta and a boosted First Impression will KO a Greninja.
Greninja-GX has a familiar Ability in Wind Shuriken which is identical to Crobat PHF’s Surprise Bite Ability. When Greninja evolves from one of your Pokemon, you may place three damage counters on one of your opponent’s Pokemon. It is also worth noting that the new Frogadier in the set has the same Ability as Golbat PHF, dropping two counters when it evolves. Crobat saw huge success when it was in format being able to help you push for KOs earlier than you may usually be able to. However, I think with the overall rise in HP in the game since Golbat and Crobat were released may mean that Greninja’s Ability doesn’t have quite as much of an impact as the same Ability did a few years ago.
Haze Slash deals 110 damage for a Water and a Double Colorless Energy and gives you the option to shuffle Greninja-GX and all of the cards attached to it back into your deck. This is a great way of protecting your attacker as well as being able to reuse Frogadier and Greninja’s Abilities during subsequent turns. This synergy would be great but Greninja is a Stage 2 Pokemon meaning that many resources would have to be used to continually cycle into your Frogadiers and Greninjas each turn.
Shadow Assassin is Greninja’s GX attack, dealing 130 damage to one of your opponent’s Benched Pokemon for the same cost as Haze Slash. This is a pretty bog standard attack and isn’t very exciting as a GX attack but at least first the theme of the card well, taking out something on the bench with the Abilities and sniping with the GX attack. It is hard to say whether you can get enough value from Haze Slash and Wind Shuriken before you run out of resources but this will be what makes or breaks the card overall. I don’t think there’s quite enough easy search for the card just yet but there is definitely potential in the future!
Naganadel-GX is a super unique card that finally gives us a reason to play an Ultra Beast based deck. Naganadel-GX is a Psychic type with 210 HP, that evolves from Poipole. Poipole is also an Ultra Beast which is worth noting, and will be useful to remember later on. Naganadel is weak to Psychic, which is unfortunate since Buzzwole and Lucario are also currently being countered heavily within the format, both also being weak to Psychic, and finally, has 1 retreat which is always a nice addition.
Beast Raid is Naganadel’s first attack, for a single Colorless energy cost. This attack does 20 damage times the number of Ultra Beasts you have in play. This is very similar to Zoroark’s Riotous Beating attack, scaling at the same rate, so we know the damage output is viable. This attack is slightly worse in that you have to have Ultra Beasts in play in order to scale the damage however meaning you can’t have cards such as Tapu Lele on your bench if you want to be getting maximum value. However, cards such as Ultra Space and Beast Energy Prism Star mean that this is definitely possible, and with Choice Band and Beast Energy attached, Beast Raid deals 180 damage with a full bench of Ultra Beasts which is enough to knock out a Lele! This attack is great and I think is Naganadel’s best attack for certain.
Jet Needle deals 110 damage and ignores Weakness and Resistance for a Psychic and two Colorless energy. This is a bit of a blessing and a curse since this damage is enough to two-shot pretty much anything in the format effectively, but also means you can’t take one-shots on Psychic weak Pokemon. This is definitely the weakest of the attacks but it is at least worth noting this as a reliable two-shot option if you don’t have a Bench full of Ultra Beasts.
Finally, Stinger GX is one of the most creative GX attacks we have seen so far in my opinion, costing three Colorless Energy. Both players shuffle all of their remaining Prize cards into their deck and then set the top three cards of their deck as new Prize cards. In general, this attack is very creative and is one of the most unique attacks we have seen which may have build around potential to some degree. However, an inherent flaw with this attack is how you set both you and your opponent’s Prize cards to the same amount but then give them the initiative of being able to act on that. Normally this would make this attack very bad, but since N is still in format, you can make some pretty strong plays with this attack. If your opponent has taken a very strong lead in the game, and is maybe down to a single Prize card, you can N them to one and then give your opponent two more Prizes to take. This is actually a pretty big swing, when you consider you could also technically be taking some prizes of your own if you have more than three Prizes remaining before using Stinger. This is a really cool attack; however, I don’t think the set-up is worth the overall reward right now. That being said this is definitely an attack that can swing games and if built around and used correctly could see some play come Forbidden Light’s release.
Finally, my personal favourite GX of the set, we have Ultra Necrozma-GX. 190HP Dragon type Basic Pokemon with a weakness to Fairy and two retreat. All of this is pretty standard for a GX nowadays, the card really comes into its own once we begin looking at its attacks. However just before we do, it is worth nothing another important card within the set. Malamar is a Stage 1 Pokemon with the Psychic Recharge Ability which lets you attach a Psychic energy from your discard pile to one of your Benched Pokemon once during your turn. Keep this in mind when we take a look at the first attack.
Photon Geyser deals a base 20 damage for a Metal and Psychic energy. This seems super underwhelming until you see that you must discard all Psychic Energy attached to Ultra Necrozma for an additional 80 damage per energy you discarded. This means the attack actually does a base 100 damage for two Energy. That’s slightly better but with 2 discards you are dealing 180 damage. Combining that with a Choice Band gives you the magic 210 damage which is such an important number right now and why I think the card is so good. I mentioned Malamar for a reason earlier on and this synergy is obviously such a strong one I think it goes without saying this deck seems incredibly strong. The deck can also technically completely function off of the new Item card Mystery Treasure which is an Ultra Ball with only one discard as long as you search for a Psychic or Dragon type. This boosts the consistency of the deck hugely as you have many ways to search your Pokemon out and make sure you get into the game. The archetype is very similar to Rayquaza Eelektrik from a few years ago which was another fantastic archetype in its day seeing huge success. The difference here being Ultra Necrozma actually hits for a much larger amount of damage due to the natural upward scaling of HPs over the past few years. The deck has a natural consistent high damage output to it with Dawn Wings Necrozma being able to move in and out of the Active position each turn letting you repower up Ultra Necrozma after every KO you take. This synergy is very obvious and I think this card is probably the most talked about card of the set for this very reason. However, the consistent damage output and hitting the perfect 210 is huge and I think this card is without a doubt going to be a big contender going forward.
Sky-Scorching Light GX is Ultra Necrozma’s GX attack which lets you drop six damage counters on each of your opponent’s Pokemon provided there are less than six Prize cards remaining between the both of you. This is a super interesting effect that we haven’t really seen before and will definitely make players think twice about taking Knock Outs in case they end up activating your GX attack accidentally. This is a pretty good attack for both setting up KOs for later on, and finishing off Pokemon that may have retreated to the Bench. However, I think the fact that the regular attack is so strong, there often won’t be much need to use this as you could just be taking another KO with Photon Geyser instead!
Thanks for reading my opinions on these three GXs from Forbidden Light, my next article will either be evaluating the other three from the set, or will be taking a look at my picks for Latin America International Championships since that is just around the corner! I think this will be a fantastic tournament and will really be a good send off for the BKT-UPR format ready for something new come May!
Finally, make sure to check out Omnipoke on Youtube, Facebook, Twitter and Twitch from all the latest from me and Joe ready for when Forbidden Light is released!
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