TCG Fakes Black & White: Plasma Revival (100% complete!)

Discussion in 'Creative Works' started by Jabberwock, Nov 26, 2020.

  1. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

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    Once thought ancient history, the battle for Unova breaks into a shattering new scene with the
    Pokémon TCG: Black & White—Plasma Revival expansion! The enigmatic Colress sets the stage with
    startling technological developments, but the region's researchers and scientists have united to stop him!
    With familiar faces and newcomers alike, the vanguard stands ready to face Team Plasma in round two
    of the most crucial battle Unova has ever faced! The war is revived. Can it be won again?


    [card gallery]

    ===​

    Hi all! \o/

    This is the thread for my new project, Plasma Revival — a fake set taking place in the late BW-era of the TCG. I love this format; I think Plasma cards are a really underrated mechanic and we almost never see them in the faking community, and it's been both a challenge and a treat to work out how to implement them for my set.

    The idea for Plasma Revival goes back nearly a year now, to the last Fakers' Marathon, which was right after I made this and then started making a bunch more Plasma Pokémon because I enjoyed them so much. I started planning out the set, sketching out spoilers, collecting art permissions, and so on, for the better part of that year, and now that the set's nearly complete, I'm beginning to release it!

    I find that I'm a bit old-fashioned, by which I mean that forum threads are my preferred method of showcasing cards. I'll put periodic updates in the faking community Discord server, and the entire thing will go up on dA once it's done, but until then the surest way to see all the cards is going to be right here in this thread.

    Some specs:
    • This set contains 117 cards, of which 95 are Pokémon, 19 are Trainers, and 3 are Special Energy.
    • There are 6 Pokémon-EX. There are no Full Art versions of these (yet), and if I add them later, they'll be numbered 118/117 and up.
    • There are a couple of new mechanics. We'll get to those.
    • Wording-wise, I'm deliberately using "their" over "his or her". I'm also using "Multiprize Pokémon" as a term in some places, which means exactly what it says. Feel free to replace it with "Pokémon-EX" in your head, if you like.
    • For the most part, the cards will be balanced for late BW. The exception is that Evolution Pokémon, particularly Stage 2s, tended to be really terrible in that era, so I've consciously made those a little bit better than they might otherwise be.
    • The Pokémon blanks are @aschefield101's gorgeous 747x1038 BWXY ones, for which the Plasma modifications were done by me. The Trainer and Energy blanks were ripped from PTCGO by @Snoops.
    • Holosheets, icons, symbols, etc are all by @aschefield101, except the Team Plasma text in the upper-right of each Plasma Pokémon card, which is by @Nekoban Ryo, and where otherwise noted.
    • Art is credited on each card in the Illus. bar, and the artist's page (if applicable) is linked in the post where the card is posted. Some art (particularly for Plasma Pokémon) I have modified, and in some cases I have used stock art, images, or renders to do so. These are either free-use or credited appropriately.
    • If there's anything I'm forgetting, I'll update this later. \o/
    Let's get started. :D

    ===
    The first and most obvious mechanic from the set is Team Plasma Pokémon. Here are the first two of those:

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    Pinsir:
    — Pinsir render by Arrancon on dA
    — Background render by ArtReferenceSource on dA
    Heracross:
    — Heracross art by All0412 on dA

    I don't see either of these being strong enough to define a deck all on their own, but together and with some other Basic Plasma Pokémon, they might have enough situational utility to form a sort of toolbox deck. Heracross's Teampact was last seen on Snorlax PLS, for five [C] Energy, and I think it's justifiable for three Energy here because Snorlax had (a) access to DCE, (b) 30 more HP, and (c) a really good Ability. There's some general Plasma support coming later on, but nothing that (imo, at least) breaks either of these Pokémon.

    ===​

    Meanwhile, the other big mechanic I'll be drawing from for this set is Fossil Pokémon (Plasma Revival, geddit?). Restored Pokémon never saw much use in the BW era, though, so I'll be taking a page out of the SM playbook and introducing an Unidentified Fossil card instead. Here's the Unidentified Fossil along with the Kabutops line and Aerodactyl.

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    Unidentified Fossil:
    — fossil (trilobite) render by printable_models on Free3D
    — background by me
    Kabuto:
    — Kabuto render by TheAdorableOshawott on dA
    — background by WingsOfAHero on dA
    Kabutops:
    — art by EvilApple513 on dA
    Aerodactyl:
    — art by Mark331 on dA

    Kabutops is one I'm potentially worried about, power-wise. It was one of the first ideas I had for the set, and based on a memory I have of taking four Prizes in a turn with Yveltal BKT's Pitch-Black Spear. Jagged Edge is crushing if used optimally, but since it only targets Multiprize Pokémon, it isn't enough to use it alone. Stage 2 Fossil Pokémon are hard to tech, so you'd probably want to run it alongside other Fossils (like this Aerodactyl). Would that be enough for a deck core? Dunno! There are other Fossils (and Fossil support) coming, though, so stay tuned for that.

    Absorb on Kabuto and Kabutops is a nod to the original Kabutops, a famously bad Stage 2 with 60 HP and a 4-Energy attack that did 40 damage. I don't think Absorb will see much more use here, but it could have some situational utility.

    On Aerodactyl, Invite and Strike is an attack on an old Zangoose from the DP era. I'm not sure whether it ever saw mainstream play, but a friend of mine used it as a tech in ... I want to say PalkiaLock? To pretty hilarious effect. In a format where switching is super easy (like the real-world late BW era), it wouldn't be all that useful, but it still lets you do damage to traditionally safe spots on your opponent's board.

    ===
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    Genesect-EX:
    — Genesect render by @Nyan
    — miscellaneous effects by me
    Prehistoric Energy:
    — Energy orb and miscellaneous effects by me
    — Colorless star vector by @CardPone
    — background by FlamingClaw on dA

    How can we consistently play a bunch of Fossils that call for different types of Energy in the same deck? Why, with a new Special Energy made just for that purpose!

    Genesect-EX lets you achieve even more utility with Prehistoric Energy by moving it around, and if you're willing to forgo the Rainbow Energy effect and attach it to a non-Fossil Pokémon, you can even get some powerful sniping damage out of it. Raw Blast is kinda similar to Kabutops's Jagged Edge in effect, which I like as a nod to the theory(?) that Genesect is a mechanized Kabutops.

    At one point in development Genesect-EX was a Plasma Pokémon, but I ended up keeping Plasma Pokémon and Fossil Pokémon pretty strictly separate, and decided I'd rather have Genesect on the side of the Fossils for this one. (Plus it's already had a Plasma EX, so eh.)

    ===
    And one last thing to close out this first batch of cards — a (minor) new mechanic!

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    Magikarp:
    — Magikarp art by tatanRG on dA
    Gyarados:
    — Gyarados render by @Nyan
    — background by ElenaDudina on dA

    Attacks that do 0 damage are distinct from attacks that do no damage in that you can still modify the damage dealt by attacks that do 0 damage. For instance, if this Magikarp has a Muscle Band attached, Splash does 20 damage. There's also the combo with Gyarados, which is the main way I see them being useful.

    There won't actually be that many Pokémon with 0-damage attacks in the set — I think right now, the number is 7, of which 6 are Basic. All Pokémon with 0-damage attacks either are Plasma Pokémon or evolve into Plasma Pokémon, which is how I'm explaining away the fact that this mechanic doesn't appear (yet) in any other sets. That's not a hard-and-fast rule, though; if anyone else wanted to make cards with 0-damage attacks for a different set, they could easily appear on non-Plasma Pokémon. And even for mine, the rule's pretty tenuous — this Magikarp, for instance, could easily evolve into a non-Plasma Gyarados.

    It's a pretty small mechanic, and I don't see it making big waves, which is largely by design. It's just something where I thought, "hey, wouldn't it be cool if TPCi did this?" But I'm aware that, like with any new mechanic, there's a decent chunk of folks who won't like it. So apart from this Gyarados, it's designed to be pretty unnoticeable.

    ===
    Aaaand that's the first batch of cards for the set! I'll try to keep relatively frequent updates coming — even though nearly all the cards are complete at this point, I'm releasing them in smaller (though still frequent) batches because it gives me more time to reflect on the set and notice any things I might want to change, and also because (I hope) it's more fun to see a set a little bit at a time.

    As always, I'd welcome feedback! Let me know what you think of these cards, whether there's any errors you noticed, any concerns you have about power levels or anything else. Or just drop by to say hi and let me know you've seen 'em. That's good too. :p

    Till next time, then! o/
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2020


  2. bbninjas Ready or Not!
    bbninjas

    Advanced Member Member

    I am actually blown away by the quality and vision behind this set. I think you might have teased that you were working on a Plasma project behind the scenes, but I expected nothing like this. What a great surprise!

    Art choices are superb, attacks are interesting, the archetypes that are emerging are very exciting, and this 0-damage mechanic has some fascinating design potential! The Prehistoric Energy looks like it could belong in an official set, and that Genesect-EX - far out - is probably one of the best original EXs that I have ever seen. @Nyan nailed the pose and you nailed the effects / lighting and all that. (Can you teach me? :x)

    My only critique would be with the 3D art - the polygons/vertices on the more curved parts of the models are rather noticeable, and it might be worth using a distort brush (i.e. Liquify tools) to push those points inwards to smooth the line out in post-production. That would take the art to the next level.
     
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  3. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    Cheers bb! I'm excited that it's come this far :D

    My big game-changing discovery with EXs for this set was figuring out how to do glowballs in a way I was happy with. Idk whether any of this will translate to Corel, but in Photoshop you can take any given brush and make it "scatter" in the brush settings window (there's a little checkbox you can tick marked "Scattering", and then fiddle with settings as you please). Then you can apply a "size jitter", which essentially means that some of the dots will come out a little bigger or smaller when you use the brush, and so on. Then it's a matter of applying that brush to many, many layers, screwing around with the size of the brush for different details, and voila. I'm also using a couple different blending modes here — I think Linear Light for the glowballs, and possibly some Color Dodge for the whoosh-y lines.

    Nyan deserves a huge hand here though, not just for the base render but also for finding a sort of metallic texture that she was able to apply to give it a sheen. Long story short, the render she gave me was really incredible on its own, and that's at least half the battle. :p

    Oh neat, I never thought of using the Liquefy tool! I thought I caught most of the vertices, but I'll give it another look. Are there any bits you're noticing in particular?
     
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  4. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    Update \o/

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    Larvesta:
    — art by salanchu on dA
    Volcarona:
    — art by All0412 on dA
    Dream Mist:
    — bottle by raduluchian on dA
    — background by me

    I like Special Conditions and I think it would be cool if PCL did more with them. I don't think this is necessarily going to make them good, but it might be an interesting tech for the right deck. Actually, I believe Ninetales DRX saw some fringe play (as a tech) in the very era I'm trying to emulate because of the prevalence of Hypnotic Laser (and tbh the benefit of being [R] type). I don't see Volcarona being played alongside Laser — I think Laser was a bit too degenerate and should be kept away from most custom formats — but Dream Mist might serve as a kind of substitute.

    Why is Dream Mist so much worse than Laser? It's not supposed to be ubiquitous; it's just supposed to be able to apply that Special Condition in a situation where you need it. Apart from Volcarona, there's a Musharna in the community-constructed set project on Discord that it might work well with.

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    Stunfisk:
    — art by Autobot.Tesla on dA

    Stunfisk is an underrated Pokémon. There was one in Dragons Exalted that saw some play just because it was able to do quick, cheap damage (including damage to the Bench!) in a format before Landorus-EX had been released. So the idea behind this one is that it would fulfill a similar niche of being an early-game attacker in [F] decks, and it's holo because I reckon Stunfisk deserves it.

    Camouflaged Strike's wording is a bit wonky, and I think this way is just better than "basic Energy (excluding [F] Energy)", which feels like too many double negatives. Obviously "non-[F] Energy" would solve the problem, but that feels too SM-on for a BW set. I think this way works, but I'm down to hear others if y'all have any suggestions.

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    Purrloin:
    — art from some official BW-era sleeves (artist unknown, afaik)
    Liepard:
    — render by TheAdorableOshawott on dA
    — background by ArtReferenceSource on dA

    Like the Pinsir and Heracross, Liepard's also pretty basic, as Plasma mons go. It can't do much to advance the game state on its own, but it's got some nifty combo potential. Is Lure potentially dangerous for lock reasons? Yeah, absolutely. It assumes a format where non-retreat switching is relatively common, but even then it can be quite strong if used right. In fairness, though, it is the main draw of this card, an otherwise pretty boring 80-HP Stage 1.

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    Skitty:
    — art by ziryuu on dA
    Delcatty:
    — art by Togechu on dA

    Delcatty isn't really one of my favorite Pokémon (though it does get some really neat TCG cards), but I had to include it in the set once I saw this art. Togechu's art is all really pretty in general, but this piece is by far my favorite, and way up there with my favorite arts in the set.

    So anyway, Delcatty gets its own thematically-named attack, which has some powerful set-up potential, and another more-traditionally-powerful attack that nods to old Delcatty cards and their "Energy Source" attacks. Both attacks would be quite good on the right Pokémon, but I think they're balanced here by the fact that, like Liepard, it's a Stage 1 with just 80 HP.

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    Full Restore:
    — Max Potion render from Niantic's Pokémon GO (recolored by me)
    — background by paulthepirateking on dA
    Old Chisel:
    — chisel render by Uwe Aranas (retrieved from Wikimedia Commons)
    — background by me
    Nate's Training:
    — Nate by Yusuke Ohmura (official BW2 art)
    — background is a Unova Battle Club from the anime

    Some non-Unidentified-Fossil Trainers!

    Full Restore is my take on "fixing" Max Potion to make it harder to abuse with cards like Wailord-EX. The difference is that Max Potion lets you heal whether you have Energy or not, and then you only discard if you have the Energy to do so. Full Restore requires that you have the Energy, but also lets you heal Special Conditions as a bonus. I'm not sure what kind of deck is looking for this kind of card, but it seems like a decent healing option if the format is slow enough.

    Old Chisel is only as useful as the Stadiums in format, but it helps you win the Stadium war if that's what you really need to do. After this card was already finished, I came upon a similar concept in @Nyora's thread — we did come up with them independently, but hey. Maybe that shows it's a good idea. :p

    Nate's Training is one of my "make Stage 2s better" cards. Not much to say here, except that it was quite a late inclusion to the set. It replaced a card called "Museum Researcher" that did something very similar to Roseanne's Research, and I changed it after realizing that there's already a couple other search-to-set-up Supporters in my set, and it would just end up being redundant.

    ===
    So that's today's update! I don't think I'll be able to sustain a daily update pace for long, since typing them up takes a while, but I'll do what I can and try to keep them all about this size. Till next time o/
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2020
  5. bbninjas Ready or Not!
    bbninjas

    Advanced Member Member

    Here's a quick liquify job on the Genesect:

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    It's still a bit rough (particularly around the eyes), but you can see the difference on a side-by-side comparison - on the arms and the cannon in particular.

    [​IMG]

    EDIT: Loving the new update! The trainers are superb!
     
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  6. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    Oh wow, that's really well done! I think the Liquefy tool might be a bit different in PS, cos I don't think it would let me do that in a "quick job" xD

    I think some of those parts (like the cannon, maybe?) are supposed to be polygonal; Genesect is a p angular mon. But yeah, I'll definitely look into it — the arms in particular look way better.
     
  7. bbninjas Ready or Not!
    bbninjas

    Advanced Member Member

    It's definitely pretty easy in Corel, but I learnt how to do it after watching a Youtube photoshop tutorial (link) on adding patterns to clothing and it looked pretty similar on there. Either way, it's shot up to being one of the tools that I use most frequently - and it's that useful!

    You're certainly right about Genesect being angular, it's how it's been rendered on various cards. The artists don't agree on where the curves and the sharp points meet though!

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    EDIT: Something I just noticed on this card is the use of textures - you could apply a very subtle metal-grain texture on Genesect for example, and that would be another way to take it to the next level.
     
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  8. PMJ happy thoughts
    PMJ

    Articles Head Activities Staff Badges Staff Elite Member Advanced Member Member

    The zero damage mechanic is interesting but it still bothers me a little. In Magikarp's case, Splash is supposed to not do damage, that's literally the attack's shtick. Of course I say this admitting that there are real cards out there that have Splash attacks that do damage. It's just a personal thing.

    I'm curious what other attacks you have that do zero damage that would thematically make sense. It seems like you'd have to build cards specifically around attacks that do zero damage because otherwise what's the point? You don't seem like the type of guy who would give an attack like Collect a base damage to increase just because, but you seem to have thought things out a bit so I guess I'll reserve final judgment until I see more of them.

    Prehistoric Energy is cool in concept but I don't know that the different fossils are useful enough that you would run multiple lines of them in the same deck to warrant Prehistoric Energy's use, considering they all evolve from the same Basic but entirely different Stage 1s (compared to Gardevoir/Gallade decks which have the same Stage 1 as well).
     
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  9. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    Yeah, that's fair. Splash is the only one that's a pre-existing named attack; in general I don't like repeating attack names with different effects, but in this case I thought I'd make an exception cos it's Magikarp and it's thematic. I might rename it Splish Splash or something to prevent any problems that arise from cards that care about the specific attack Splash.

    One of them does draw cards. They're all just intended to have niche uses in different ways, so if you were to play them with Gyarados, you'd probably want a few different ones for different situations in the game. Outside of Gyarados they're not intended to be revolutionary or anything, but the effects are kinda neat and in some cases you would actively want to be increasing their damage somehow.

    That's a good point. I've got a couple cards in here aimed at boosting Fossil consistency, but it's probably not enough to make a Fossil toolbox deck viable by itself. I'll see how it goes — assuming this ever gets uploaded to Lackey, I think it's the sort of card that ends up being more useful as more cards come out, even if it doesn't make big waves immediately.

    Cheers for taking a look, and I hope the rest of the set doesn't disappoint!
     
  10. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    Some Plasma support mons —

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    Voltorb:
    — art by Blui129 on dA (and here, actually)
    Electrode:
    — Electrode render from Pokkén Tournament
    — background by FlamingClaw on dA

    Power Connect is, of course, lifted off the real-life Plasma Deoxys-EX, where it's on a Basic and only boosts by 10 damage. I don't think it's realistic to get more than 1 or 2 Electrode out in a game, and at that point you've invested the same number of cards in it as you would for the equivalent damage boost in Deoxys (+40 damage is four Deoxys, or two Voltorb and two Electrode). So I think the balancing is okay there.

    Ball Lightning seems like it could feasibly be quite potent if you're running an Electrode-focused deck, since Power Connect does self-boost (and boost other Electrode). But at three Energy, I just can't see it being self-sustainable.

    Last note is about the Voltorb art, which is amazing and looks to me just like a real card's art! Blui may not make art very often, but when he does ...

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    Baltoy:
    — art by Twime777 on dA
    Claydol:
    — render and background by @The Ωmega One

    I like old formats. I like Claydol GE. I'm aware that many people do not like Claydol GE, or at least don't want to see it in a modern format. So my compromise is a relatively non-threatening, Team Plasma-specific version of the card. Huge thanks to Omega for helping my dream come to life. :D

    For whatever reason, there was only ever one [F] Plasma Pokémon, and it was a promo Landorus that only ever got released in the UK. There's also only one [F] Plasma mon in my set, and Extrasensory on this one is a nod to the same attack on that Landorus.

    Baltoy is another card with a o-Energy attack. It's just supposed to be minor utility, since any Gyarados deck looking to play 0-Energy attackers would probably reap a lot of benefits from Claydol and so wouldn't even need to think twice about playing Baltoy. It draws cards as is thematically appropriate for the line, and it's like Baltoy GE, too.

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    Bronzor:
    — art by @steffenka
    Bronzong:
    — render by Arrancon on dA
    — background by FlamingClaw on dA

    This is the flagship Pokémon for my set, having the set's name as an attack, and I'm quite happy with how it turned out! steff's amazing art for the prevo really helps, too. :D

    Whether or not it's justifiable to set up a Stage 1 for the sole purpose of setting up a bunch of other Pokémon is debatable, especially since you have to invest so many Plasma Energy to get maximum value out of it. There are some decent Stage 2s in the set, but the best use might just be to nab a quick Claydol or Electrode. Resounding Bell could also be useful, but you might be spreading yourself pretty thin on Energy types at that point.

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    Rotom:
    — Rotom render from Pokkén Tournament
    — background by ArtReferenceSource on dA

    Rotom is my take on Team Plasma Badge — a way for the Plasma engine to adapt itself to non-Plasma archetypes. I have a couple of thoughts about how this could apply to cards in this set, which we'll get to when we get to, but it's also a way for the engine to retain relevance beyond the couple dozen Plasma-and-Plasma-adjacent cards in this set.

    System Reset is also a way for Gyarados to heal itself, if need be, and the only 0-Energy attack in the set other than Magikarp's Splash that costs [C].

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    Ghetsis's Ambition:
    — art from Pokémon Generations

    I drew from the SP engine for inspiration for parts of my Plasma engine, and that's probably most obvious in this card. It's a bit different from Cyrus's Conspiracy — I'd argue the selection of cards it gets you is a fair bit more powerful, being any Item rather than just Team Galactic/Plasma Items, and the Special Energy being a fair bit better than a basic Energy — but you can only play it if you're behind on Prizes. Is that fair balancing? To be honest, I'm not sure! We can probably liken it to Twins, which means it depends entirely on how easy it is for a Plasma deck to pull ahead after being behind on Prizes all game.

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    N's Compassion:
    — art by Ho-oh on Pixiv

    I thought about making N a Plasma card, but I think I prefer the idea of N being free from them, and "N's Compassion" being good for everybody, not just Team Plasma. So I ended up making it a reprint of Cynthia's Feelings (from Legends Awakened), because I think Cynthia's Feelings is a really well-designed draw Supporter. I also toyed with the idea of changing the condition for the effect up, or altering it in some other way, but each of my ideas just felt worse than Cynthia's Feelings, so I left it as is.

    ===
    Hopefully this update gives a clearer picture of where the Plasma engine is headed. I've got a few more goodies up my sleeve, particularly in terms of Plasma Trainers, but for the most part, the other Plasma Pokémon in the set are Pokémon that make use of the engine rather than supporting it. Let me know what you think! :D
     
  11. bbninjas Ready or Not!
    bbninjas

    Advanced Member Member

    I can't believe you've even thought about the order in which you post the cards as to best showcase the different mechanics and archetypes in the set!

    Blui's art always blows me away. I remember seeing a Tyrantrum that he posted years ago and was astonished by the ways he goes about texturing, tracing and shading. I asked him how he did it and he explained, and him showing how it was possible to make one's own art was when I first realized that I could make art of my own.
     
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  12. PMJ happy thoughts
    PMJ

    Articles Head Activities Staff Badges Staff Elite Member Advanced Member Member

    wow rude way to steal an attack name from a card I did eight years ago >:[

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    Electrode seems good but without knowing what Energy acceleration exists it's hard to tell if it will go anywhere as an attacker. It doesn't look like anything that exists in Lackey will help and none of my sets offer open Lightning acceleration so it could be balanced.

    Bronzong is only as good as the cards it can fetch. If attaching three Energy to something like Electrode is a big deal, I can't see how you would ever pull want to pull more than 1 mon at a time with Plasma Revival.

    As a fan of turning Pokemon into Trainers I'm all for Rotom becoming Team Plasma Badge. Nice thematic fit also.

    When I see a card like Ghetsis's Ambition, that you have to be losing in order to use it, my mind immediately goes to ways that stall can abuse it. If the other Plasma Supporters are tied more closely to the Plasma archetype then I don't think it would be a problem, unless you can somehow build a stall deck out of Plasma cards (or if using Rotom to turn non-Plasma Pokemon into Plasma Pokemon ends up being a big deal). There won't be a ton of Special Energy in Expanded Modern until my latest set gets added to Lackey (read as: not for a while) so depending on when these sets are added (and what other Special Energy you have in this set), this card's strength will vary.

    N's Compassion is just Cynthia's Feelings as you said and I have no problems with it, but in Lackey it's largely outclassed by Paulo. It's hard to justify its use without some sort of Supporter recycling card in the format as well.
     
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  13. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    Man I thought I'd seen "XXX's Ambition" around somewhere! I was so pleased to find that TPCi had never used it that I didn't stop to consider whether I'd seen it on a custom card before. I'll change it if you want.

    Yeah I'm not sure either. Plasma Energy are gonna have some stuff going for them in this set that make them easier to use, but it is a big investment for one Stage 1. It's not splashable; you'd probably have to build the deck around setting up with Bronzong in order to make it effective. I think that's probably doable, but it might just be worse than setting your other mons up the old-fashioned way.

    I don't think that'll be too problematic, or at least not with the Plasma Supporters and Special Energy in my set. There's stuff that might toe the line power-wise, but nothing that veers into stall territory, so the gameplan still has to be take-six-prizes-to-win. It's definitely a good card to keep an eye on as things develop, though.
     
  14. PMJ happy thoughts
    PMJ

    Articles Head Activities Staff Badges Staff Elite Member Advanced Member Member

    I'm just giving you shit about the card name. I have no plans on putting it into Lackey so I'm fine with yours as is.
     
  15. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Tynamo:
    — art by Autobot.Tesla on dA
    Eelektrik:
    — art by @steffenka
    Eelektross:
    — render by TheAdorableOshawott on dA
    — background by FlamingClaw on dA

    I mentioned that most of the Plasma mons from here on out would be attack-focused rather than support-focused, and here's one of the more linear ones strategy-wise. The upper limit on the number of Items you can play in a turn is pretty high, but you have a finite number of them in your deck, so you don't want to go in guns-a-blazing and use them all up early on. Since most decks play like 25-35 Items, that gives you an upper limit of about 700 on your damage output for the whole game. And that's assuming you're attacking with Eelektross on every turn you play Items, which obviously won't be the case, especially in the earlygame. You can boost your damage somewhat with Electrode, and there might be some shenanigans that let you get a few Items back from the discard here and there, but at some point you'll probably have to resort to the (overpriced) Plasma Overdrive attack, which is rarely a position you'll want to be in. So I think there's some interesting deckbuilding and gameplay potential here.

    Eelektrik provides some marginal support by searching out Items from the deck, and Tynamo has one of the more useful 0-Energy attacks (when used with Gyarados, at least).

    [​IMG]
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    Bergmite:
    — art by Autobot.Tesla on dA
    Avalugg:
    — art by Twarda8 on dA

    Here's a non-Plasma mon, and a card which I think has the potential to be a self-contained archetype. The intent here is that the Avalugg player plays a drawn-out, defensive game, setting up each Avalugg with Glacial Retreat over the course of multiple turns before Knocking Out something big with World-Shattering Blow.

    The idea's inspired by Wailord ex decks from 2004, which hide behind (0-Prize) Fossils until they're ready to swing with a big Dwindling Wave. A friend of mine built Wailord a while back and I've always been really impressed by how differently it plays compared to virtually every other deck in that era or any other. I'm not very good at playing it, but it seems almost like chess whenever he does it.

    [​IMG]

    Skarmory:
    — art by Twarda8 on dA

    This card was born out of the realization that Lackey doesn't have very much Tool removal, and my wanting to make a card that could reliably remove Tools, but not too easily (i.e. a splashable Basic, but takes your attack to do it). Whether or not people would play it, given that it's an attack, is probably debatable, but Plasma Chatot saw some play in the brief interval between Tool Scrapper's rotation and Startling Megaphone's release, so hey, you never know.

    [​IMG]

    Team Plasma's Assignment:
    — art by All0412 on dA

    Generic draw support for the Plasma engine, similar to Holon Adventurer for the old Holon engine (similar in role, anyway; not exactly similar in effect). Worth noting that despite how cool this art is, neither Salamence nor Klinklang appears in the set. :/

    [​IMG]

    Research Base:
    — render by ArtReferenceSource on dA

    I'm not reprinting Colress Machine, so this is one of my alternative ways of making Plasma Energy worth playing. Plasma Energy being retrievable from the discard is something that was only doable through Shadow Triad (a Supporter) in the real-life BW era, but it's obviously much easier to do here — which I think is a good thing. It means I can do more additional effects that rely on Plasma Energy, and people can play them all together without having to choose just four total uses for any given game.

    It's got some mild anti-synergy, since the Plasma engine has some Bench-sitters (Electrode and Claydol) that you generally want to keep around. So you gotta play carefully around it, or decide which effect you want to go all in on.

    ===
    I think right now, my plan is to get some more Plasma stuff out, showing y'all some of the different options for the engine, and then moving into the other archetypes the set features later on. Hopefully the Plasma stuff doesn't get too boring before then. :p
     
    steffenka likes this.
  16. PMJ happy thoughts
    PMJ

    Articles Head Activities Staff Badges Staff Elite Member Advanced Member Member

    Tynamo and Gyarados is a pretty busted combo; at best you're doing 100 to their Active and 100 to some poor Bench sitter, which is enough to kill a lot of guys in this era. Gyarados only needs 1 Energy to copy it, too, so it's not like you're gonna be depleting a lot of resources to get the twofer. And that doesn't even mention you can spread it around... bigly powerful combo.

    I love Eelektrik's Strip Bare attack. Too bad it never actually saw play.

    Eelektross is probably weaker than it looks, but Research Base is busted so maybe not.

    Bergmite's Break Off costing WC is insulting. Lapras NXD gets two of anyone for just W. As for Avalugg, it looks fine if you have a fatty to stick up front and take hits for you.

    Skarmory will probably see some use because you are right, there isn't a lot of Tool removal outside of attacks and my own Fan Rotom. All the attacks I've made, though, affect the opponent's Active directly, whereas Skarmory can delete from anywhere, so it'll have use, at least until such a time that BW and SM become separated.

    Team Plasma's Assignment is hella good, even if you can't get full usage out of it if you also play Research Base.

    Research Base is amazing and solves Electrode's Energy problem. Now you can attack turn two for a boatload of damage. Forget Electrode, use it with your Heracross; you can Teampact turn two for 170+ damage. And I haven't even mentioned the synergy involving Rotom turning everything Plasma so you can accelerate any deck. S tier card.

    Also I forgot about Claydol, I liked Claydol GE and it was necessary to stop Absol SW from ruining the format. Yours is strictly worse and I dunno if that's a good thing. Maybe make it so you get fewer cards if you don't discard a Plasma card? It would kinda provide more synergy with the attack also.
     
    Jabberwock likes this.
  17. bbninjas Ready or Not!
    bbninjas

    Advanced Member Member

    Yeah, agreeing with PMJ that Research Base is downright bonkers and / or busted. Something I've learnt from Paulo* is that it's really easy to keep your of Benched Pokemon count quite low for ultra-consistent and more aggressive decks, while rogue decks and decks that rely on techs struggle with that. @Nyan is extremely good at this kind of resource management and nearly always has her bench count lower than 3, for example. A bit tongue in cheek, but you might as well make the condition "if you're playing the game", unless you want a quad / big-basic format. ;)

    Team Plasma's Assignment is also very good and is more bonkers than Colress in my opinion. Most Plasma decks back in the day would be drawing 4/5+ cards for each Team Plasma's Assignment Supporter, way above the 3-card Tierno average.

    Art is fantastic like normal though!

    * Basically, "Draw more cards if you have less Pokemon than your opponent in play."
     
    Nyan and Jabberwock like this.
  18. FireLizard Dragon shipper
    FireLizard

    Member

    Dude,these cards looks so good!
    They brought me to my childhood when I started collecting Team Plasma cards.
     
    Jabberwock likes this.
  19. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    I think a lot of it comes down to how easy it is to actually get that damage on Gyarados ahead of time — it damages itself with the Ability, but each usage of the Ability leaves Gyarados with less and less HP going into your opponent's turn. I think in general, it's historically been pretty hard to regulate the amount of damage on your own Pokémon except in niche formats with broken combos that get quickly banned (Magma's Base / Reuniclus / Unown DAMAGE, for example).

    Yeah, point; I'll probably change that in post-production.

    The Rotom thing's intentional, but you might be right that Heracross and Electrode get too much acceleration out of it. There's some anti-synergy with Heracross in that you can pull off one Teampact, but if your opponent can revenge-kill it then it becomes noticeably harder to power up the second, since you've filled your Bench. Electrode can do lots of damage but I don't think it's really any better than Flareon PLF was in the formats with lots of discard power, and 80 HP makes it a glass cannon. But overall yeah, especially given what bb said about it being real easy to keep your Bench size low, that might be a concern. I'm open to ideas for balancing Research Base.

    I'm open to that too. It's just a question of how much people like staple Pokémon draw, which I thought wasn't much but might actually be a bit higher.

    I think the difference between Assignment and Colress is that most Plasma decks back in the day were Big Basics decks that could drop four Deoxys-EX no problem, whereas I don't think the mons in my set have the potential for that kind of deck. There are some Basic Plasma mons, of course, and there's Rotom too, but in each case it's probably suboptimal to be loading your Bench with those just for the sake of the draw support. Still, though, I'll definitely take a closer look.

    Cheers! :D
     
    FireLizard likes this.
  20. Jabberwock #Jovimohnaeliackvid
    Jabberwock

    Forum Mod Member

    [​IMG]

    Zeraora-EX:
    — art from an official Pokémon wallpaper from the TCG set Lost Thunder
    — some effects (specifically bits of the lightning) are also from that wallpaper
    — other miscellaneous effects by me

    Not anywhere close to 100% on this balance-wise — especially given the discussion in this thread around rebalancing some of the other Plasma stuff, haha — but this is intended to be one of the main Pokémon that can make use of the engine. I don't think Research Base is enough to make this card good on its own — over on Discord, @Nyora likened it to Darkrai-EX BKP, which needed substantially more support in the form of Dark Patch and Max Elixir to get where it got. There's also not any more Plasma-specific (or [L]-specific) Energy acceleration in my set, so any more support for this card will have to come from somewhere else.

    Even then, it could easily be broken, since it has such a high upper limit on damage and conserves Energy relatively well. I'd be curious for thoughts on balancing. I said there wouldn't be any Big Basic Plasma archetype, and I want to hold to that. I don't think this card engenders a Big Basics archetype on its own, but if y'all feel differently I wanna hear about it. :p

    Art-wise, I think I'm happy with where it's at. Each different EX in this set was a learning experience in a new way, and for this one I had to figure out how to get lightning into the art — which I ended up doing by lassoing bits of the wallpaper out and fiddling with blending modes. Then there's some glowballs, some whooshy effects, and it's done! :D
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2020
    CardPone and Nyan like this.

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