Hello dear readers – I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned in any of my articles on this site that I’m planning on going to Collinsville in a little more than a month to compete in the Regional tournament there. In preparation from that, I’m going to be posting a LOT of material on Ultra Prism and how it will affect the game over the next month. I’m really excited about going to Collinsville, and I really want to be prepared for Ultra Prism’s impact on the meta. As I’ve mentioned many times, the meta was very slow to adopt Sun & Moon last year. I definitely want to put myself in the best position possible to take advantage of that mistake if the meta is slow to absorb UP this year.
I’m going to start out today with Cynthia and how she’s going to affect the game.
Cynthia – Trainer – Supporter
Shuffle your hand into your deck. Then, draw 6 cards.
I don’t think there’s any question that Zoroark decks will now substitute Cynthia for Sycamore, or maybe leave 1 Sycamore at most now. I’m sure evolution decks as well will tech in more Cynthia and less Sycamore too. I don’t think we can completely replace Sycamore with Cynthia as I don’t think it will get you enough draw support. Four Cynthia and four N will be great for recycling and not having to worry about throwing cards you need later in the game away in your discard pile, but will it get you enough draw support?
For instance, if you have five or six cards in hand and reshuffle and then draw five or six cards, statistically, at least one or two of those cards will be repeaters – cards you had in hand prior to reshuffling. Obviously, you couldn’t immediately use that card prior to reshuffling, and it’s more likely than not when you get it as a repeater, it won’t do you any good after reshuffling. That’s the benefit of Sycamore: besides getting you the largest number of cards possible (excepting a turn 1 Lillie with an empty hand), it lessens the chances of putting repeat, non-usable cards in your hand. It involves sacrificing resources later in the game for the opportunity to improve your current game status, but the logical reasoning for this is simple: if you can’t get out of the mess you’re in right now, there probably won’t be a late game scenario for those sacrificed cards to help you out down the line anyway.
So I don’t think Cynthia will completely replace Sycamore, but what about N? My feelings on N are well known: I rarely tech it into a deck and hate it when I do. It’s a simple fact: N helps your opponent twice as often as it hurts him. We’ve all had games where we have a Greninja hand turn 1, we’re completely lost, our opponent will probably donk us on turn 2… and then he N’s us, gives us every card we need, and we wind up taking the game in short order from him.
This type of scenario happens twice as often as the late game scenario where you play N to limit your opponent to 1 or 2 cards. I’ll post my analysis on N tomorrow, but the fact is that if you give your opponent even a single additional card more than what they previously had in hand, you are more likely than not improving their hand and giving them a much better chance at beating you. If you look at N from that perspective, logically, N should be a one of at most in every deck, and Cynthia should completely replace it.
However, that was NOT the reaction I got from a reddit question I posted this weekend. Let me clearly state that this is NOT an objective scientific study by any means. I simply posted the question, “how Cynthia will impact your draw supporter selection” and generally categorized the responses. From what I can tell, seven of the responders indicated they would run the same number of copies of N. I did clearly identify four who would run less N, however. I counted three people who indicated that they would run less Sycamore, and three who would run the same amount of Sycamore. Eight out of nine responders, as far as I can tell, would run at least one copy of Cynthia, and everyone who was running Cynthia was choosing to reduce the amount of either Sycamore, N, or both.
Again, this is a VERY unscientific survey, and who knows how much more Cynthia will be used. It’s all theorymon right now. We just won’t really know until we actually start playing with these cards. I will close with daftkenny’s comment from this reddit post because I thought it was a great reminder that Cynthia is actually a reincarnation of Professor Oak’s New Theory from the Call of Legends expansion set:
I remember Tome Dolezal’s speed darkrai. like it was yesterday; 4x Random reciever, 4 Juniper, 4 Oak’s New Theory.
Im gonna put a playset of Cynthia in every deck I can.
As well as Mater’s great line from Cars:
I don’t need to know where I’m goin’, I just need to know where I’ve been.