Pokemon Card of the Day #768: Charizard δ (Crystal Guardians)

Charizard cards always seemed to have the same problem. While they did a ton of damage, they had really terrible attack costs and usually required discarding an absurd amount of Energy. Charizard δ continued that trend, though it certainly came closer to relevance than most Charizard did. Requiring all Metal Energy to be discarded was a total pain, and required a dual Lightning/Metal deck to work, but Metal had some Energy acceleration, a new Basic form of the Energy that was released late in the DX-On format, and its attack did enough damage to KO a lot of relevant Pokemon. It still struggled with discarding, but this was the first Charizard in a while with serious positives.

Charizard δ, like most Charizard, had 120 HP. It was definitely bulky enough to take a hit from most things, and it wasn’t rare for it to stick around for quite a while against certain decks. A Water Weakness did hurt, though, against popular Pokemon such as Vaporeon ex and Empoleon. Those Water-types would need to watch out, though. Charizard δ was quite capable of mowing those down with Metal Burn with help with their own Weaknesses to Lightning. A Retreat Cost of 2 was quite average. Switch was still very nice here, since Charizard δ didn’t need to discard any more Energy than necessary.

Charizard δ had a Poke-Power to try to help it, or a teammate, set up. Once during your turn, when you played Charizard from your hand to evolve 1 of your Pokemon, you could look at the top 5 cards of your deck. You took as many Energy cards as you wanted, attached them to 1 of your Pokemon, then discarded the other cards. It was quite risky, since you could end up discarding some important pieces, but it could definitely help get Charizard δ going. It wasn’t very reliable, though.

Metal Burn was Charizard δ’s only attack, and it was quite typical for a Charizard. It did an amazing 120 damage, enough to KO the vast majority of Pokemon in one hit, but did so for the annoying cost of 1 Lightning, 2 Metal, and 1 Colorless Energy. It also required you to discard all Metal Energy attached to Charizard δ, which meant that you were basically required to use Basic Lightning along with Metal and avoid Special Energy that weren’t specifically just Metal Energy. This was very inconsistent, but what made Charizard δ borderline playable was the existence of Metagross in the DX-On format. Metagross could actually get Metal Energy back from the discard pile, and while it did minor damage to Charizard δ in the process, it was definitely worth it. Sadly, multiple Metagross were pretty much required for consistency, and that meant setting up 3 Stage 2 lines. While this was very possible, decks relying on that usually wanted something a bit less prone to Energy problems.

Charizard δ could work if the set-up went well, and that was a big boost from most Charizard cards. That being said, Pokemon such as Salamence δ and especially Metagross δ paired far better with Metagross than Charizard δ did, since they actually had consistent attacks. Charizard δ was a high-risk, high-reward choice that required a deck be built around it. It probably wasn’t tournament-worthy due to the risk, but it was good enough to be used more casually. That was impressive for Charizard standards, at least.

My hat is complete and I think it looks pretty damn good.

“Meeowth, that’s right!!”

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Mega Charizard XY

A mega collaboration between myself and @tulerarts! I did the composition and sketching, Tuler did the linearts and coloring.

We’ll be selling this at Anime Expo 2016 in LA this weekend (July 1-4)! You can find us at Table C7. Come by and say hi! :D

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