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card review Dark Venusaur: Behold: Your Worst Nightmare has arrived

Card Review
Dark Venusaur: click to enlarge
Dark Venusaur

Card text:

Grass Grass Grass   Horrid Pollen 30
Flip 2 coins. If 1 is heads, the Defending Pokémon is now Asleep and Poisoned. If both are heads, the Defending Pokémon is now Confused and Poisoned. If both are tails, the Defending Pokémon is now Paralyzed and Poisoned.

  • Rarity: Promo
  • Type: Grass
  • Number: 7
  • Subtype: Stage 2 Pokémon
Energy Symbols:
C = Colorless = colorless energy
D = Darkness = dark energy
Fr = Fire = fire energy
Ft = Fighting = fighting energy
G = Grass = grass energy
L = Lightning = lightning energy
M = Metal = metal energy
P = Psychic = psychic energy
W = Water = water energy
Dark Venusaur
Behold: Your Worst Nightmare has arrived

written by cyan1d3
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General description:

Dark Venusaur (Japanese: わるいフシギバナ "Bad Fushigibana") is a leaf-type Stage 2 Pokémon card.

Its English release was as a Best of Game (#7) promotional card. The English card has another version, which has a gold "Winner" stamp in the bottom right corner of the picture. These were awarded to those who had won a certain number of matches in the BattleZone event in May 2003.

Its Japanese release was as a promotional card that came with Volume 10 of Pokémon Trainer's Magazine, in March 2001. The card was later reprinted in Pokémon Web.

Strategies and game play:

70 hit points

Attack Name - "Horrid Pollen" (Japanese: いやなかふん)
Power: 30
Cost: 3 leaf energy cards

Flip 2 coins. If 1 is heads, the defending Pokémon is now asleep and poisoned. If both are heads, the defending Pokémon is now confused and poisoned. If both are tails, the defending Pokémon is now paralyzed and poisoned.

Dark Venusaur (Best of Game #7) is without a doubt, a nasty card. Unlike other cards that require coin flips, "Horrid Pollen" does damage to the defending Pokémon and has additional effects no matter what the coin flip results may be.
Bayleef (T Promo 7) can use "Miracle Powder" should the player not get the special condition he had hoped for or to inflict a burn. It is quite literally a "pick-your-poison" situation.

Combos with other cards:

-Dark Ivysaur (Best of Game #6) is required in order to evolve and have Dark Venusaur in play. While there is no preferable strategy to Dark Ivysaur, it is a prerequisite for the battle.

-Bulbasaur (Vending S1) is probably the best Bulbasaur card to bench in preparation to evolve into Dark Ivysaur. First of all, Vending S1 Bulbasaur has 50 hit points while many other Bulbasaur cards have only 40. "First Aid" helps Bulbasaur's endurance as it removes 1 damage counter from Bulbasaur. It can also use "Poison Seed" to whittle away at the opponent's Pokémon if you cannot wait for Dark Ivysaur or Dark Venusaur to do the job.

-Miasma Valley (Platinum #111/127) is an excellent Stadium card for a grass/poison based deck. Whenever either player puts a basic Pokémon (excluding leaf or poison Pokémon) from his or hand onto his or her bench, put 2 damage counters on that Pokémon. These conditions are extremely frustrating for an opponent with a fire, fight, electric, etc.-themed deck and will make him fall faster!

-Rocket's Hideout (Neo Revelation #63/64) is more of a defensive Stadium card. Each Pokémon in play with Dark or Rocket's in its name (both yours and your opponent's) gets +20 HP. That gives Dark Venusaur 90 hit points and Dark Ivysaur 70 hit points; another endurance boost.

-Protective Orb (EX Unseen Forces #90/115) can prevent an opponent's fire Pokémon from tearing through your Dark Venusaur team if it is attached to one of the player's Pokémon with a weakness to fire attacks.

-Dawn Stadium (Majestic Dawn #79/100) allows that whenever any player attaches an Energy card from his or her hand to leaf Pokémon or water Pokémon, remove 1 damage counter and all special conditions from that Pokémon. Another defensive Stadium card.

-If the idea of benching Dark Ivysaur is not an ideal decision, play Rare Candy (EX Sandstorm #88/100) to go straight to Dark Venusaur from Bulbasaur!

**If Dark Venusaur is not in your hand, you cannot use Rare Candy. First play Rocket's Poké Ball (EX Team Rocket Returns #89/109) so you can find it in your deck**

Ways to counteract it:

-Island Cave (EX Hidden Legends #89/101) states that whenever any player attaches an Energy card from his or her hand to water Pokémon, fighting Pokémon, or steel Pokémon, the player can remove any special conditions from that Pokémon. This counteracts the added effects of "Horrid Pollen".

-Most fire Pokémon can decimate this team. Charmeleon (T Promo 11) does the job nicely with "Flame Tail" at a base power of 40. After applying weakness to Dark Venusaur, Charmeleon knocks out Dark Venusaur with one blow.
Magmar (Video Intro Set) could use "Fire Punch" or "Smog". Both attacks are quite energy-efficient.

-Karen's TM 02 (VS #141/126) contains "Damage Burn". Attach it to a dark-typed Pokémon. The best time to use this attack is when Dark Venusaur has at least 1 damage counter already on it so that the base power is 40 instead of 20. Applying Dark Venusaur's fire weakness can add up to a power of 80. The cost? Just 2 flame energy cards.


- 70 hit points is fair for this card
-The added effects of "Horrid Pollen" can stop opponents' Pokémon in their tracks
-The retreat cost is only 2 basic energy cards. I expected 3, based on the retreat costs of other cards on the same tier as Dark Venusaur. Consider Dark Charizard (Team Rocket #4/82) or Dark Donphan (Neo Destiny #3/105) with retreat costs of 3 basic energy cards.


- x2 weakness to fire attacks
-No resistance
-No Pokémon Powers

Artwork and aesthetics:

Illustrator : Shin-ichi Yoshida

The format of Dark Venusaur is like the e-series card format with bars or dot codes on the bottom and left edges, suggests that, perhaps, Dark Venusaur was initially intended to be in one of the e-series sets. This card format was the last vestige of Wizards of the Coast.

Overall rating:

9 out of 10. Dark Venusaur can definitely still hold its own in battles that are using newer Pokémon cards. "Horrid Pollen" saves this card from the shallow graves for most of the pre-EX era cards that are outmatched by their newer counterparts. Venusaur's added effects of Sleep and Confusion and Paralysis and Poison can bring even EX and Level X Pokémon to their knees!


Modified on December 13, 2011 06:50 pm

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Discussion about this Card Review
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Author Message

Avatar for coldkohmew
Subject:    Posted: September 16, 2011 10:39 pm Reply with quote Report content icon

i agree,3 energy is tricky unless maybe a energy combo?
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Avatar for cyan1d3
Subject:    Posted: December 13, 2011 06:50 pm Reply with quote Report content icon

quote from coldkohmew:

i agree,3 energy is tricky unless maybe a energy combo?

Yes. Maybe something like the PokéPower Nurture and Heal on Meganium ex (EX Unseen Forces 106/115)
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