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Pokemon Deck Building: A Complete Guide. part 1, Making a deck


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18 October 2018 - 07:13 PM

#1

WingsofFire1014

    Senior Trainer

  • WingsofFire1014
Hello everybody! This is WingsofFire1014 here to give you a complete guide to deck building through a series of threads. So without further ado, let's get started.

Here is the order in which this guide will be in.

1. MAKING A DECK

1a. Basics to a deck

1b. Pokemon

1c. Energy

1d. Trainers

1e. Supporters

1f. Stadiums

1g. Draw power






1. MAKING A DECK

1a. BASICS TO A DECK

Every Pokemon Deck must have a total of 60 cards. No more, no less. A deck can have a maximum of 4 copies of any card excluding energy. There is an exception though. You can have for example 4 Mew in a deck and still have 4 Mew EX in a deck since the names are technically different. You are also aloud to play cards from older sets along as it has the same exact text as the current one. For example, you can still use the poiton card from any XY set, if it has the same exact text as the current one. This goes mainly for the standard format.

1b. POKEMON

Just like in the actual game, Pokemon have weaknesses. It works a little bit more different in the TCG though. Like in the games, Pokemon may have a weakness of a certain type, but it might be different in the TCG. Don't worry though as it isn't hard to get used to at all.

In the TCG, pokemon are grouped into different types. Normal+Flying, Dark, Fighting+Rock+Ground, Fire, Grass+Bug+(Poison), Lightning, Metal, Physic+(Poison)+Ghost, Water+Ice, Fairy, and Dragon. Most pokemon, almost all the time have a weakness that doubles the damage they received and one resistance that normally reduces the amount of damage it takes by 20.

The amount of Pokemon that you include in your deck is pretty tough for starting out. Most beginners might think that they should have 20+ Pokemon I their deck so they are prepared for any scenario. But in the long run, this will actually hurt you. Really the only decks that have ever had this many Pokemon are for example, Vespiquen, and Night March (these decks have to do with some things that I will explain later). They rely on Pokemon being in the discard pile for their attacks to do good amounts of damage. The reason that you only want 10-12 Pokemon in your deck, is because a lot of the time, you might end up with a bunch of cards that you can't even play. The only ones you can play to start off are basic pokemon (if you have any room left on your bench). Then, later you may be able to evolve them into a stage 1, then a stage 2 (if you are able to evolve them on your current turn, or if you even have their basic form in play). Which means that any cards outside of this, are cards that you can't play. The same goes for energies because you can only play one a turn. But don't think that just because most of the good current decks are using X energy and X amount of pokemon. Be aware though to not have too many of too little.

As the space for cards becomes limited, even 2 or 1 stage 1 or stage 2 evolutionary lines can become too much. The amount to have in a evolutionary line is often overlooked. Just like when you are considering how many trainers you want to use. The number should correspond not only to the importance of that card in your deck, but also how quickly you need them out, how many you want to have our at once, and if you have any ways of accelerated evolution. You have to account for when one can be active, you may start with one, one may be prized, or even to make sure that you are able to get the card out quick enough to make it necessary to run a many of one card. Here is what evolution trees should look like. Stage 1 lines: 2-2,3-3, 3-2, 4-4, or 4-3.

Stage 2 lines: 2-1-2, 3-2-3, 4-2-4, 3-1-3, 4-1-4, 0-0-3, 0-0-4, 3-3-3, etc. These lines all depend on the criteria mentioned above. If you have cards like rare candy or Archies ace in the hole then the evolution line can be weaker if you choose to keep some card space open for more trainers.

1c. ENERGIES

Remember that this is only a guide on the deck building aspects of energy. When you begin the TCG, some people may say the best amount of energy to have is 20. But in recent years, there has been no reason to have that much energy in your deck. The average amount of energies used in a deck is about 8-11.

Very few competitive decks even have more than one type of energy. having more than one type of energy in your deck, may threaten your ability to power up a certain pokemon. Most of these decks that only running type of energy have only 6-15 pokemon, so this leaves a lot of room for trainers. You don't have to worry about it to much though, as some decks thrive with low or high amounts of energy. The last thing to mention about energies is that you don't want to use to many special energies. Although they may be helpful with the extra effects they will add to some Pokemon, there will always be many ways for people to discard them or shut them down.

1d. TRAINERS

Trainers are a unique concept for a card. They have incredibly good amount of use, but they don't do to much by themselves. For all intents and purposes, decks could be made by just Pokemon and energies. But a decompile this would probably never exist, because it wouldn't be consistent enough.
There are disruption trainers that aim at throwing off your opponent (detaching energies, discarding from hand, forcing a switch, etc.). There are draw trainers that let you build a better hand, or even get rid of your hand and refresh. Hand playing is everything. Energy trainers help find energy in your deck, they cannot you attach extra energies on your turn, or they could recycle energies. Phase trainers focused on you switching your Pokemon or making your opponent switch. Tools at trainers that can be attached to your pokemon, and he used for special effects like increasing its attack damage. Trainers also help you find Pokemon in your deck, or get them back. There are two other types of trainers that need their own paragraph.

1e. SUPPORTERS

Supporters are a special type of trainer that can do anything above like I mentioned, but you can only use one per turn. The reason this is important, is because most supporters have abilities better than normal trainers, but some of them have the same effect. Take Xeroisic and Enhanced Hammer for example, both of these have the exact same affect. But, since Xeroisic is a supporter, wouldn't it be better to just use enhanced hammer instead? No, because there are Pokemon that can lock down item cards. A supporters main focus, is for a better draw support.

1f. STADIUMS

In the current format, stadiums play an important role. A Deck like honchkrow loves to use Shrine of Punishment to power up its attack. So if you have ways t stop that with cards or stadiums, then you have won the stadium battle.

1g. DRAW POWER

This is the central theme of almost every deck. Being able to draw into the cards you need is a make or break it for decks on higher level matches. Although the core of your deck is the 2 or 3 cards you choose to build your deck around. I don't remember watching the most recent world championships and seeing any deck that did well without draw power. Being able to cycle through your cards, find the ones you want, discard what you don't need, and our the pressure on quickly is just to powerful for any deck. Even very slow deck builds have high amounts of draw power because they still need ways to make sure they get the cards they need. Overall, never underestimate how valuable draw power cards really are.

So that concludes part number 1. I will be releasing part number 2 anywhere from a week to a month. Keep an eye out for updates with more information.

Edited by WingsofFire1014, 30 October 2018 - 10:39 PM.

Try try again. Never ever quit.
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18 October 2018 - 10:36 PM

#2

Felidae_

    Elite Trainer

  • Felidae_

Did I really just upvote one of your posts ? Man, that felt weird.

 

Much better than your previous entry. More information, better structured and easy to follow. Good job.

 

I'd keep some parts simpler though and add a couple of additional information to various sections.

i.e. in the introduction to Pokemon you start to talk about Vespiqueen and Night March. Now, we know what you are talking about, but chances are that your audience doesn't know either archetype and thus will get a little bit lost.

 

I'd also incorporate more stylistic devices to increase the readability of the text (more paragraphs, topics and sub-topics in bold / underscore, highlighting important parts of the text, etc.). Especially long strings of information, like the part about evolution lines, get a bit difficult to read as a single string of text.

 

Though, as I said, overall this one is much better than the last one. I'd advise you to read through some parts once more and always try to imagine yourself in the shoes of a beginner: if you stumble over something that seems odd it might be a good idea to rephrase it.


The shadows of the abyss are like the petals of a monstrous flower that shall blossom within the skull and expand the mind beyond what any man can bear, but whether it decays under the earth or above on green fields, or out to sea or in the very air, all shall come to revelation, and to revel, in the knowledge of the strangling fruit - and the hand of the sinner shall rejoice, for there is no sin in shadow or in light that the seeds of the dead cannot forgive...

 

  • 1

18 October 2018 - 11:14 PM

#3

WingsofFire1014

    Senior Trainer

  • WingsofFire1014
Thank you.

Unfortunately the device I use to post on these forums, does not include bold letters or a highlighting system. I did my best to take your opinions, and I will probably add more later on.
Try try again. Never ever quit.
  • 0

28 October 2018 - 07:14 PM

#4

SuperStone

    Elite Trainer

  • SuperStone

A good overview. :)  One thing I'd like to point out is that if you're using Archie or Maxie to get it out, there's really never any reason to run more than two of a pokemon.  You'll likely be discarding it with Battle Compressor, so drawing into it isn't a problem- you only have to worry about it being prized.  And it's extremely rare to see archie used more than once a game- it's simply too difficult to play down to just him in hand.


The truth waits for no one.  That which you refuse to see, TPCi, slips past you.  The chat function was never your problem, yet through your blindness, you have made it one.

  • 0

30 October 2018 - 10:38 PM

#5

WingsofFire1014

    Senior Trainer

  • WingsofFire1014

A good overview. :)  One thing I'd like to point out is that if you're using Archie or Maxie to get it out, there's really never any reason to run more than two of a pokemon.  You'll likely be discarding it with Battle Compressor, so drawing into it isn't a problem- you only have to worry about it being prized.  And it's extremely rare to see archie used more than once a game- it's simply too difficult to play down to just him in hand.

Yes you're right. I am using that part as an example for the most part. Thank you for mentioning it though.
Try try again. Never ever quit.
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31 October 2018 - 03:21 PM

#6

Zyragoon

    Rookie Trainer

  • Zyragoon

This is a very good post for beginners. Thank you for posting this!! :D  


Be the best that only you can be, because you are your self.

  • 1

31 October 2018 - 03:49 PM

#7

WingsofFire1014

    Senior Trainer

  • WingsofFire1014

This is a very good post for beginners. Thank you for posting this!! :D

Yeah no problem!

I also have a part 2 a little farther down in the deck construction area. That might be helpful too.
Try try again. Never ever quit.
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31 October 2018 - 04:05 PM

#8

Zyragoon

    Rookie Trainer

  • Zyragoon

Ok cool i'll have to check it out.


Be the best that only you can be, because you are your self.

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