I'd like to create an example on why this is. Let's say we are building a Standard deck that is heavy on metal-type Pokémon. Of course, they are weak to fire types, and we'd like to make sure we'll be fine should we find ourselves facing a fire-type deck. So, we make our way over to Versus mode and search for a Standard match. We're not going to hope to get one on our first try, obviously. It IS a random search, after all. This match will still help us out in testing what we need to improve in our deck, so that's good. Now, let's say we're fighting a meta deck. For this example, we will use a run-of-the-mill Garchomp/Cynthia deck. We get some bad draws, and end up losing early. No big deal, let's just go into another match. Hmm, it's another Garchomp deck. Well, they're meta decks for a reason, we can get better draws and take 'em down! Or not. We've gotten bit by the bad luck bug again. Time for another match... this deck again? This is getting old. Let's just try to get some good-- uh oh, this starting hand is no good whatsoever. Suppose we might as well concede now. Come on now, let's see some fire decks... REALLY? Let's just not bother and hope-- okay, no. This has gone far enough. Sorry bud, we're not doing this again.
So now what? We're sick of Standard, so why not try Expanded? Yeah, you're running a Standard deck, you'll be against strategies that combine both old and new cards, but with so many different cards to choose from in Expanded, a fire deck is bound to appear, and we'll be free from-- HUH? Someone's brought their Garchomp deck here! They've got deck share on, might as well look after we lose... hmm? They're not running any Expanded cards either! It seems that they're escaping the meta decks of Standard as well!
Thus is the dilemma that we face when we play test our decks through the TCG Online's Versus mode! Sure, you can duel the AI to test a deck, but that's not the same when compared to playing against another person. Unfortunately, we're stuck with meta decks we don't want to face anymore in Standard, and they re-appear in Expanded when others get the same idea to try and ditch the meta decks, even though some of them are running Standard meta decks in there themselves! This has been pestering me ever since I started playing again, and I know the whole "meta decks don't go away because they're meta dude" speech constantly goes around, but when I need to know how my deck fares against another, the convenience of checking it in the TCG Online is diluted heavily by the matchmaking.
What can we do? There are several solutions that could be implemented separately or together that would make play testing a deck against a certain other kind much less of a headache.
1. Add filters for matchmaking. For instance, if a player wanted to be against a fire deck, they can just turn on an option in the menus and be faced against opponents running fire-type Pokémon. Allowing players to only choose one type at a time would be optimal, as if we go too far with this filter, the matchmaking could take serious damage, and players running meta decks would never get a match. They're players too!
2. Make Expanded decks have more Expanded cards! In my opinion, people shouldn't be allowed to head into Expanded with deck that have ONLY Standard cards, but we can't just force them to put just one card that isn't legal for Standard, though! That would make it much too easy for people to sneak Standard decks in. I'd suggest that the limit should be at least 10 cards not legal for Standard. Maybe 15 would be better, but putting too strong a vice on people's Expanded decks is the last thing we'd want. I consider Expanded to be my preferred format, as the amount of strategies you can create practically explodes when compared to Standard, and limiting this creativity is not a good thing. Maybe just 5 cards not legal for Standard would be appropriate!
These are just a few suggestions I've come up with, maybe you've got a few to improve this issue. Or perhaps you don't think it's an issue at all? Tell me about it! For me, this is the one thing keeping me from playing the TCG Online, and if you've got no issues with it, I'd like to know why. Maybe if we get some ideas thrown around, we can find a solution that works and influence the developers to address this. Thank you for reading, and have a great day!