zoom jpg (103 KB)cred: P.P.Erika · Gym Heroes (G1) #16Proxy: +1+2+3+4 1.4K 19 98%$ / TCGplayer (14 hours ago) ↗↓ 14.31꩜ 24.46↑ 59.95Erika Trainer › (Item) You may draw up to 3 cards, then your opponent may draw up to 3 cards. illus. Ken Sugimori Gym › Gym Heroes (G1) › #16/132 : Rare Holo · ↘ Aug 14, 2000 Formats: Other: 1999–2001 · Modified: 2002 External: Bulba ↗ · Shop: TCGplayer ↗, cardmarket ↗, eBay ↗RatingOverall: 98.13% (210 wins, 4 losses)Within Set & Formats:Gym Heroes: 100% (10 wins, 0 losses)BS-on (1999–2001): 96% (27 wins, 1 loss)RO-on (Modified 2002): 100% (28 wins, 0 losses)Note: The rating system is currently disabled.
Draw 3 cards.
About six months ago, I commented that Copycat and Erika were two very synergistic cards: assuming that you would be able to put most of your cards to use, Copycat would allow you to have a huge advantage on the board.
I couldn’t foresee that there would be a card printed with an even more broken synergy than that.
In combination with Ghetsis, Erika is LEAGUES beyond any other trainer ever. Imagine this scenario:
You manage to get a 4x Erika chain off immediately, netting yourself a ~14 card hand and your opponent an ~18 card hand (depending on mulligans and starting benched pokemon). All of a sudden, you pull out ghetsis..
What happens next depends on the deck your opponent is running, but a general rule of thumb is that most unlimited decks will be at LEAST 50% trainers. Your opponent proceed to shuffle something like 10 cards back into his deck, now having an 8 card hand,completely deprived of trainers. . You , on the other hand, have 23 cards in your hand(you just used ghetsis) . Do you have a pair of pokedrawers? Good, because you now can now tutor for any card that you might not have.. You basically just drew out everything you could possibly want in your deck, with a healthy set of cards remaining to shield you from deck out against control decks.
Your opponent DOESN’T accept the triple draw? ok, now you have a 14 card hand. You can play ghetsis ANYWAY,and he may well have a trainerless 3 card hand to your 16 card hand. He might as well just scoop.
I’m a little confused to why this is so great. I understand why Bill was, but why would you want your opponent to draw cards?
Its mostly just good in Unlimited. Since Bill has to be played as a supporter, its the strongest straight drawing card left.
Oh, I didn’t realized it got an errata.
Imposter Oak’s Revenge, The Rocket’s Trap…
Tatu chín đai
Drawing options were ridiculous back in Gen 1. You could play FOUR of this card and FOUR Bills in the same turn to draw 20 cards
Don’t forget Professor Oak, who unlike Bill and Erika, never got errata’d into a Supporter.
(side note — Bill and Erika in their Supporter forms are functionally different cards in Japanese, due to the different card backs separating their legality, similar to Computer Search)
Although old Trainers are considered Items under modern-day rules, this card was reprinted as a Supporter, effectively removing the old version of it from the game.
That’s kind of only true for the English edition of the card game. For the main Japanese language version of the TCG, Gym block Erika was printed with the old back, and the new Erika was printed with the new back. They’re meant to be understood to be different cards, and the lack of understanding on that front is what caused (or else played into causing) so many problems with English players not understanding why HGSS Bill meant old copies of Bill were ‘valid’, but BW-era ACE SPEC Computer Search didn’t mean old copies of Computer Search were ‘valid’.
Simply – this card was NOT reprinted as a Supporter. If EN Organized Play has made rulings suggesting otherwise, they’re wrong.
The same goes for most of the other cards being commented on. Bill is a special case that was deliberately errata’d by its (JP-only) e-Card reprint; otherwise..
I don’t even think old Trainers should be considered Items, to me it makes the most sense to reclassify them appropriately using one’s own judgement regarding the strength of the effect.
For example, Professor Oak should clearly be a Supporter/equivalent to Professor’s Research. Gust of Wind is Boss’ Orders, Lass should be a Supporter, Computer Search can exist as an Item but only as an Ace Spec (but Ace Specs can become very luck sacky so maybe not), etc.
Then you’ve got cards that have morphed a bit more like Scoop Up vs Super Scoop Up vs Scoop Up Net vs AZ which require more thought & may ultimately be format dependent based on the pool of cards you’re working with (e.g. Scoop Up Net is appropriate in Sword & Shield due to prevalence of V’s but may be overpowered in an older era).
Erika is clearly a Supporter since in general cards that allow you to draw more than 1 card for no cost are Supporters, you could make the argument that it’s a minus 1 since your opponent also draws 3, but you get to use the cards you drew right away (could even Reset Stamp them) so it’s not a pure minus 1 in that sense.
Ambassador – I appreciate your details on the exact/official rulings, for this specific discussion what I’m more interested in here would be how the cards “should” interact in a game-design/theory sense rather than how they work under most recent official rulings. Interesting to think about!
@televisionnationdp – if we’re talking about “shoulds”, I probably would end up agreeing with most of the decisions you’d make about what should be a Supporter or Item, but probably for different reasons. A card like Erika, imo, “should” be a Supporter because it depicts a human character. A card like Computer Search “should” be an Item because it’s an Item.. surprisingly (or maybe not surprisingly, maybe this was a deliberate design thing), the cards tend to be balanced when you approach it like this.
But there are definitely where it’s not really clear what the card “should be” – is “Gust of Wind” an Item or a Supporter? Flavorwise, it’s kind of neither. Something like Goop Gas Attack is another one in nebulous territory – the card’s original name, [まきちらせ!ベトベトガス], has the same format as a lot of Rocket Secret Machine cards, i.e. that kind of “Word Followed By Exclamation Point, Weird Phrase Reminiscent Of Engrish” format, and I imagine most of those would lean towards items.
Personally, I think there’s no need to should/would/could these cards into anything they’re not. The way Trainer cards are subdivided is not consistent across eras, and a card is a card. Even putting aside my insistence the EN TCG needs to be understood as a derivative subservient to the main edition and a lot of its idiosyncrasies need to be held in contempt, I would just catalog a card as what it is; i.e. (this) Erika is a Trainer card. That’s all it was, in many sense it’s all it is, and when I look up a card from a given era I’m reasonably familiar with the context of the era it was printed in released… in fact, I’d probably even argue rather than lumping together Trainer cards across different eras, the site should probably be categorizing Trainer cards of different eras as separate ‘systems’ of Trainers?
Regarding cards like Erika being two different cards, that also tracks with Gen 1 Erika getting reprinted again in the staff-exclusive anniversary deck that coincided with Celebrations.
As for different Trainers getting ruled differently depending on their effect, that strikes me as an absolute disaster. It’s subjective and arbitrary, and requires a bunch of memorization and has 0 intuitiveness to new players. Especially since the strength of cards isn’t even consistent within the context of what’s expanded-legal — compare Professor Burnet to Battle Compressor. Old Trainers were intended to function as Items, with no limit on how they’re played, and that’s why they’re Items now. Whether they’re too strong or not is irrelevant to that — they’re all unsupported in official formats anyway, especially in Japan where they all have different card backs.
If you want an Unlimited experience that’s relatively “balanced”, just play e-Card on, when Japan changed the backs, introducted Supporters, and started approaching the game with a stronger sense of competetive balance in mind in general.
Unlimited players that use English cards can no longer use the Wizards-era Erika/Here Comes Team Rocket! wordings for those cards. Nor can they use non-ACE SPEC Computer Search. (They can’t use old Bill either, but apparently there’s errata involved there on the JPN side, so okay.) However, they still do use all other “old back” cards alongside cards from e-Card and later; my comments about being “reprinted as a Supporter” were made in that context. (Yes, Japan’s old back & new back cards aren’t compatible, except for the brief period where Byzantine errata/rulings were introduced during the transition.)
Wait, I was under the impression Gen 1 Computer Search remained legal in Unlimited, effectively allowing five copies of the card?
I would argue that that should be how it works, even if it doesn’t, and the same should apply to Bill and Erika — essentially allowing eight of each, four Supporter versions and four Items. The reasoning for Computer Search iirc was something like a “significant text difference”, but something becoming an Ace Spec seems no more textually significant than becoming a Supporter.
Did “significant text difference” first come up as a term on the Pokegym forum under as a specific account, or did it makes its debut in a generically signed “PUI Rules Team” message? The most generous way to characterize that phrase would be to call it an ambiguous understatement.
Pokegym isn’t loading for me right now, but the ruling appears linked to in this Pokebeach thread.
The “play as the Ace Spec” line implies that in Unlimited, Base Computer Search *can* substitute for the Ace Spec, which is incredibly weird given it can’t do so in other formats. Format-specific rulings aren’t generally a thing?
I’m not sure where I got the five-Computer-Search thing from, though. It wouldn’t really align with anything else, so I surmise it was just some unofficial conjecture derived from the ruling they’re different cards.
Hmm, unless you are saying that, if we must play with old back and new back mixed, there really should be _two_ versions of Erika in Unlimited, with old Erika & new Erika being distinct (yet having the same name)? Regardless, the community has decided to remove the original Erika from the game entirely….
Can’t find Team Compendium/TPCi rulings rn but I’ll link them if I ever come across one.
(There is at least one TPCi ruling that explicitly calls out interaction between modern cards & Wizards cards, at least: https://compendium.pokegym.net/ruling/1060/ calls out that Professor Oak & Item Finder, etc., are to be considered Item cards by new card effects.)