In between "Pokémon" journeys, Jeremy enjoys working as a pharmaceutical chemist and campus manager.
What Are Legend Cards in Pokemon?
Legend cards are more than just depictions of legendary Pokemon; they're unique, two-part entities that require both card halves to be played at once, counting as a single Pokemon once melded. Legend cards can be tricky since they require two parts to function, often carry two weaknesses, and some grant your opponent two prize cards when defeated.
That said, they're basic units that don't need to be involved, reward players with powerful effects, and since many carry two types, they're great for exploiting enemy weaknesses (dealing double damage). But with only nine ever produced; which mythical beasts reign supreme? These are the nine best (and only) two-sided Legends in the Pokemon trading card game!
9. Palkia & Dialga Legend
Having two types triggers both more resistances and more weaknesses, but since weaknesses are more powerful, it's generally beneficial to carry two elements. Sadly, Palkia and Dialga can't make use of their type-trumping since neither of their attacks deal damage!
Sudden Delete places a benched enemy and its energy back into your opponent's hand, which stalls them, but doesn't net you a prize card, so it's situational. Time Control is a lame effect that discards all Steel energy (or Metal, as the TCG calls it) just to add the top two cards of your opponent's deck to their prize cards. Throw in two weaknesses plus a hefty retreat cost and you have a cool-looking but futile alliance.
8. Darkrai & Cresselia Legend
Darkrai and Cresselia wield Lost Crisis, which nets 100 for four energy. It also banishes any opponent it defeats (putting it into the "Lost Zone"); unfortunately, you have to exile two energy to use it, worse than discarding since you can't retrieve the units from the graveyard.
Moon's Retreat only needs one energy and simply spreads damage counters among your foe's team as you see fit, a nice way to direct damage to your biggest threat. All-in-all, not a bad card; I just wish Lost Crisis was a bit easier to use.
7. Lugia Legend
Unlike most partnered Legend cards, Lugia only has one type, but he compensates by having just one weakness and a low retreat cost, actually having a resistance, and only granting one prize card when beaten. Poke-Power Ocean Glow impresses, automatically attaching any energy from the top five cards of your deck to Lugia when he enters play.
That said, Elemental Blast needs not two but three different types of energy; tri-colored decks are difficult to build, making this a risky endeavor. Plus, you have to discard one of each type when you use the attack, making consecutive blows challenging; that said, the move scores a whopping 200 damage. That's a tempting sum, but it's often just not worth the difficulties involved in accessing it.
6. Rayquaza & Deoxys Legend
Rayquaza enjoys two types, but not many creatures are weak to Normal, so it's of limited use, especially when you have two weaknesses (Normal and Psychic, ironically) and require both Electric and Fire energy for your only attack.
Still, Ozone Buster lands 150, though it forces you to discard all Fire energy. Thus, Rayquaza and Deoxys are tricky, but their powerful Space Virus Poke-Body lets you take an extra prize card when they defeat an opponent, doubling the speed at which you'll win.
5. Entei & Raikou Legend
Entei and Raikou have two weaknesses, but their twin types exploit several weaknesses themselves, and they enjoy a free retreat cost, letting you easily swap them out.
Detonation Spin is the highlight here, landing 90 with just two energy, though you must discard a Fire. Thunder Fall is costly, forcing you to discard all energy on Entei and Raikou, but dealing 80 damage to each Pokemon in play (including yours) that has Poke-Power trait. Sadly, this damage isn't affected by weakness, but it can be a a powerful, albeit risky, last-ditch effort to assault multiple foes.
4. Ho-Oh Legend
Like Lugia, Ho-Oh Legend only has one type, but also just one weakness, one prize card when beaten, and carries a resistance. Additionally, his Sacred Rainbow Poke-Body turns all energy attached to him into Fire, similar to classic base set Charizard, meaning he can fit in any deck. You might actually want him in a Water theme, giving a nice counter against Grass enemies.
Bright Wing deals 100 damage and requires you to discard an energy. Not a bad deal if you can keep your hand stocked with energy, and thanks to modern supporter cards, that's rarely an issue.
3. Suicune & Entei Legend
These Johto legendaries combine for a powerful tag-team with two nice attacks and a low retreat cost of one. Torrent Blade makes you return two Water energy from Suicune and Entei to your hand, but slams a benched enemy for 100, a great way to finish off injured foes. And since you bounce the energy rather than discard it, you can start reattaching it immediately.
But Bursting Inferno is even better, simply dealing 80 damage and burning its victim. Plus, since this move has two neutral slots, you can access it with just two energy if you use a Double Colorless card.
2. Raikou & Suicune Legend
Raikou and Suicune have a nice HP total, low retreat cost, and two great attacks. Thunderbolt Spear lands a fierce 150, though you'll deal 50 damage to yourself (thankfully ignoring weakness). Fortunately, you can soon recover with Aurora Gain, which only nets 50 but remove five damage counters from Raikou and Suicune, a great finishing blow to prepare for your next recoil-inflicting attack.
1. Kyogre & Groudon Legend
This team's Water and Fighting provides a great pair, offering handy type-trumping against many Fire and Normal foes. Each of their moves needs four energy, but has two colorless slots, meaning you can either access them by applying two energy of each type or taking advantage of a Double Colorless.
Kyogre's Mega Tidal Wave discards five cards from the top of your opponent's deck, dealing 30 damage to each benched foe per energy card among them. While a bit unpredictable, this can really devastate a full bench, and it's a nice way to mill your adversary closer to a deck-out loss.
Or, Groudon's Massive Eruption discards five cards from your deck, dealing 100 damage to the defending Pokemon per energy among them. Another devastating blow with no energy loss; just be careful not mill yourself into an accidental defeat.
Legacy of Legend Cards
Legend cards offered engaging mechanics, even if nabbing both card halves was tricky. Still, their idea of partnering two famed Pokemon has been continued in more-recent tag-team GX cards. These duos are paired on the same card and offer formidable attacks, but grant three prize cards when defeated, making them a risky but rewarding endeavor.
While a mixed bag competitively, Legend cards were engaging and featured cool artwork, and I hope we'll revisit them in future sets. But for now, as we eagerly await Nintendo's next batch of allied monsters, vote for your favorite card and I'll see you at our next Pokemon countdown!
© 2019 Jeremy Gill