February 16, 2013

So far we've covered the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist, the Jinchuriki and their Biju, and everything that's happened to fall in between. Today, in this week's Stormy Battle, we'll wrap up the Jinchuriki theme—well, we'll really just do Kinkaku—and continue on to the four or five Ninja that has gotten everybody excited for this set. Hit the jump if you dare to enter this Stormy Battle!

Kinkaku & Bashosen's Power

"Kinkaku himself ties into the fact that he and his brother were once swallowed by the Nine Tailed Fox when trying to capture it. They survived for a couple weeks by eating the inside of the Nine Tail's stomach, and when it finally spit them out, they were saturated in its Chakra. This sort of made them psuedo-Jinchuriki, like Sora. This is reflected in the fact that if Kinkaku has 1 or more +1/+1 coins on him, he gains “Tailed Beast”. Not “Tailed Beast Form” Mind you, but legitimate full on “Tailed Beast”, making him an eligible user of Tailed Beast Bomb. If you can't get coins on him with something simple like Rock Lee or Nice Guy Pose, he can fill himself with coins through his own effect. Stats wise, he is quite strong, though really only when injured, a quality that many Nine Tails Chakra users share. What I am surprised at is his lack of Rank, even though he was purported to being one of the most powerful Cloud Ninjas of his time. I guess the Cloud just doesn't really care about Ninja ranks all that much, as evidenced by Omoi, Karui, and Killer Bee as well." -Shino'sDad

Now, as far as Bashosen goes, it's a very flavorful Technique in that it reduces Damage to your Planet by blowing the flames away. The cost might be hefty and it may be a Turn 5 Technique, but note that it's a Tool so it can be combo'd with many Tool-theme cards.


No but really.

"The Bashōsen (芭蕉扇; Literally meaning "Banana Palm Fan") is a large fan that is able to generate all five of the basic elemental chakra natures. To do so, the user need only say a mental command, which produces substantial amounts of the desired element when the fan is waved.

The Bashōsen is revered as one of the treasured tools of the Sage of the Six Paths. All five of the tools consume enormous amounts of chakra when used, so much so that normal humans would die after using the tools for only a short period of time." - Narutopedia 

So in short, this fan can give you access to any of the five elements. Following in the footsteps of the Benihisago, as far as flavor to the series goes, the Bashosen yields a certain effect dependent on the type of Chakra you put in it. Because of this, we'll be going through each of its elemental attacks one-by-one.

Earth's trademark ability is that of making Ninjas on the Battlefield Stand-by Ninjas. This has been a consistent theme ever since the Set 1 with Earth Style: Headhunter Jutsu. This particular effect is extremely reminiscent to Howl in that the Jutsu itself does not cost much but it pushes a Ninja back. This effect is arguably the best effect on this Jutsu, only being opposed in usefulness by the Water effect, which we'll get to soon.

Fire has always been able to give quick hits through Jutsu, whether it's with a Fireball Jutsu, another Fireball Jutsu, or another Fireball Jutsu. While this effect doesn't nessescarily give a Damage to a  Ninja, it still does some harm that is reminiscent of two recent Fire Jutsu. This effect is a nice way to hurt your opponent's Ninjas when you're rushing early, making it the third or fourth best effect.

A pump Jutsu for Lightning? That's something new... As with most stat increasing Jutsu, there isn't much to say here. It's a costly Needle Jizo. The only redeeming factor of this effect is the versatility of the card it's on. So although situational, it can still be deadly if played right. Depending on your situation, it is the third or fourth best effect.

The worst of the five effects, it is reminiscent of Cliff-Climbing Training except that it generates no Chakra. This effect might have been decent if it weren't for the "discard 1 card" attached to it. Obviously this is the worst, or fifth best, effect.

No One Likes Water
As of yet, there hasn't been a Water technique for the fan but, ironically, the Water effect is arguably the best effect. Extremely reminiscent of Hidden Mist Jutsu, well, it actually is Hidden Mist Jutsu for 2 Generic.Water was in desperate need of some sort of negation. Mystic Fog Prison just wasn't cutting it and the new Hiding in the Mist wasn't going to either. This Jutsu is just what Water needed, although it still needs a little more.

In conclusion, the Bashosen is a very versatile Jutsu. It's five effects make it great for dual or tri-colored decks since it gives you  many options. As of now, I see Revitalize being able to make the best use of this card since they generate both Earth and Water symbols. Remember, you only get to apply ONE OF the effects, not as many as you can.

THE 4TH KAZEKAGE & Sand Tsunami

So despite a soon-to-be errata on THE 4TH KAZEKAGE, he is actually not too bad of a card, certainly better than his previous incarnations, well, maybe he's not as good as [DIGNITY]. His effect is actually pretty good; if you more Chakra than your opponent, he can just negate Jutsu for days. Either that, or they'll have to be wasting more Chakra just to play Jutsu. 

What makes him shine, no pun intended, is his Sand Combat Attribute. The Sand Combat-Attribute Deck fell off ever since [Immense Power] left. Ever since, we've had just one user for these Jutsu, Gaara. Now that his father is revived with all his abilities, we can have two users for all the neat Sand Jutsu like...

Sand Tsunami! Again, despite a soon-to-be-errata, this Jutsu is not as bad as people make it out to be. The wording is tricky but in essence, if they have 2 Injured Ninja in their team, 1 of them being the Head Ninja, give 1 Damage to each of them and discard the rest of the team. Not bad at all for just 2 Wind Chakra. Although it is a little situational, it can be an unexpected Jutsu since many Ninja in format are better when Injured as far as Combat goes. At worst it's a 1 Damage, at best it's a team wipe. It's not the worst card we've seen. 

While THE 3RD RAIKAGE's stats aren't as strong as his successor's, both copy, his effect definitely makes up for that. This guy is a wall. He can't be hit by any Damage, meaning the only thing that can get him off the board is a removal Jutsu or his own effect. His effect is of course a direct reference to how he was defeated in the series. Other than that, he's a very straight forward card that can take hits and swing without fear.

Hell Stab: One-Finger Spear Hand might be one of my favorite Jutsu cards in this set.  Not because of its awful name but because of the fact that its effects are dependent on the number of free fingers you have. It is an amp'd up version of Lion's Mane. The first two effects may not be amazing but the last one is very strong. The ability to kill a Ninja and fill your Hand up to 3 is great. Note the flavor behind the third effect: It can kill an opposing THE 3RD RAIKAGE since it doesn't damage at all.

The only problem with the card is you can't use any effect if you have no cards in hand when the Jutsu is resolving, so watch out for that. Also, you can't just use the last effect to fill your Hand when you're unopposed because you will need a target for it upon resolution.

THE 2ND TSUCHIKAGE & Atomic Dismantling


So unlike his successor, both copies, THE 2ND TSUCHIKAGE is amazing. His stats are pretty decent for his turn but his effect is what makes him great. Being the invisible man, Mu can walk onto the Battlefield and net you 2 Battle Rewards if your opponent's Ninjas aren't on the same level as him. Following a Kakashi with Mu might be one of the biggest plays the game has ever seen.

Mu's Atomic Dismantling on the other hand seems less appealing than the Super Rare version, for obvious reasons. While the original costs more, it does have more users and can get rid of more Ninja than this version can. However, this new incarnation can knock cards out of your Hand and draw you the same amount if you're targeting a Ninja with multiple symbols. This is flavorful of Mu using it on Onoki. The choice is yours, I myself would prefer the original due to its destructiveness.

Itachi Uchiha & Yasaka Magatama


So the highly anticipated [IMPURE RESURRECTION] Itachi was not as good as we were hoping it was. It's stats are weak, even weaker than those of the Itachi it was based on. If you play this in Unlimited, you have the ability to use this effect up to 5 times assuming you're running 2 other Itachi and 3 Anbu Days. Unlike [GOAL], however, it has 3 Mental Power, which is relatively useful in this format. Taking another look at its characteristics, we notice that it still has Akatsuki. This means, unlike those of the Supreme Court of the United States, a position in the Akatsuki lasts longer than a lifetime.

Yasaka Magatama is, in my opinion, really generic. It's just another Damage Jutsu that does more Damage if you pay more. It doesn't even kill any Healthy Ninjas. Also, the Requirements are extremely redundant. There's no need to include "Susano'o (Sasuke)" since he/it is already a "Sasuke Uchiha + Entrance cost of 5 or more". A very lackluster card in my opinion/

Madara Uchiha & Shattered Heaven


The key phrase of the day is beginning to seem like it's, "So despite the soon-to-be errata...". This Madara is a lot better that its older incarnations, even the Masked Man, however when compared to his Client version, the Client is bound to see more play. Secretly I had been hoping all Madara cards would be Clients from now on, but that didn't happen. This Madara has strong stats at first glance but when you compare it the other Turn 6 versions, all that really happened was they took an Injured Support Value and tacked it onto the Healthy Combat Value. So in reality,  he's the same 18 Power Madara, just a turn later. Note his significant lack of characteristics... 

His effect however is pretty cool. It utilizes the seldom used term of "distribute". The last time we saw this was on the Sasuke/Kakashi Squad. At first I read this as it gave 2 Damage to up to 2 Ninjas. After a second look I was severely disappointed in the magnitude of his strength. Nonetheless, he's still solid as far as his effect goes. He still has the ability to kill a Ninja during the Exchange of Jutsu. Like the other [IMPURE RESURRECTION] Ninjas with multiple identities, he can use his effect up to 5 times if you're running 2 other Madara and 3 Masked Men. Although he won't see much play due to the popularity of the Client, he is still a money card and is most likely going to be the most expensive card of the set other than a Super Saiyan 4 Naruto if we do see it.

Despite Madara coming from Hell, he can still shatter the heavens. There had been rumors about Bandai wanting to bring back Great Breakthrough. Many players sided against this idea, especially because of the horrendous powers of Chidori Stream back in the day. Shattered Heaven not only imposes Bandai's spiritual beliefs upon you, but it also clears the field, no questions asked. The ability to discard all other Ninjas, then return the user to the Hand is powerful, but there are several drawbacks.

The first being it requires Madara with an Entrance Cost of 7 or more. This makes sense considering the Turn 5 one is presumed to be too young to know such a technique and the Turn 6 ones are not Madara himself. However, a Turn 7 board wipe is kinda hard to pull off. By then the opponent should be holding enough responses to stop this 12-21-12-esque technique. 

The second drawback is apparent after the Jutsu goes off. This drawback was shared by Great Breakthrough and Chidori Stream, to some extent on the latter. Unless you use this on the block, your opponent gets to drop a Ninja and swing in for Battle Rewards. But let's assume you're smart and you do use this on the block. But what now? You most likely will not be holding a plethora if Ninjas in Hand to rebuild your field; in fact, the only Ninja in your Hand is going to be Madara... and you can't even play him because of his Sacrifice.

Shattered Heaven is a strong Jutsu, don't get me wrong, but there are too  many drawbacks. Trying to pull it off is a challenge due to its requirements. I mean, you can use Role Reversal but that's a different story. The least it could have done to make itself better was to have the ability to not be affected by other effects. Don't get me wrong though, this card opens the door for tons of potential combos and deck ideas, we'll just have to wait and see.

That's it for now guys. Come back tomorrow for our sixth preview from Set 28: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3. Check back next week for Part 5 of the Stormy Battle and the following day for our final, Super Rare, preview! Until then guys. 

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