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The PokeDeck Corner:


matthew69

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Introduction:

Hello I'm Matthew or Basculin and welcome to "The PokeDeck Corner". The PokeDeck Corner was once a quite popular place of discussion on the Pokemon TCG metagame and cards. However with all the chaos of the new V2 of PTCGO it disappeared for a while, but now I think with the Forums becoming more popular than it had been at the start of the new Forums release and the introduction of a brand new Pokemon set due out in the form of Plasma Storm I thought now would be an appropriate time for the return of the PokeDeck Corner.

 

This is a place for people of all ages and experience levels in the game. This is a place for in depth discussion of cards and decks and sets for people who compete in tournaments and are looking for their game to reach its ultimate potential, however this is also a place for simple deck help and advice for those new to the game looking for deck help on a fun deck for PTCGO. This is a place for all to get involved no matter what level or age in the game.

 

Those who are more experienced in the game might also want to develop their understanding even further through writing Pokemon articles on cards, decks or even whole sets. All who wish to write articles will be welcomed here and will recieve excellent help, advice and feedback from me and others on all of their articles, and also have the rewarding feeling of helping others and themselves.

 

As "The PokeDeck Corner" becomes more popular other new and exciting parts will be added such as Competitions and Tournaments, but as we are still in the starting stages those are a while off. For now however I would like to welcome all to the new PokeDeck Corner.

 

 

Matthew.

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Storm Set Preview Part 1:

 

Introduction:

 

Hello I’m Matthew, first of all before I divulge into the main part of this article which is the Plasma Storm Set Preview Part 1, I wish to talk a little bit about me. I have been interested in the Pokemon TCG a while now, but this is the first ever season I have entered into tournaments, and with a decent amount of success, gaining 45 Championship Points from the tournaments I have entered [1 Battle Roads, 1 Regionals, 1 Cities] which includes a first place Battle Roads in the first ever tournament I entered where I was running a Darkrai-Hydreigon variation. But enough about me and now into the main article where I will preview all the main competitive Pokemon in the new set apart from the EX’s and Trainers which will be previewed in the next part. This article is a little over 5000 words so have a nice read of it.

 

Pokemon:

 

 

Infernape:

 

 

Infernape’s the first Pokemon I want to talk about within the new Pokemon Set. It’s a Stage 2 Fire Pokemon with 130 HP, Water Weakness, no Resistance and Free Retreat. The HP is decent for a Stage 2, in particular as it has a Free Retreat Cost, but it could still have been better. With 130 HP without the use of Pluspower or Weakness not a lot can take this attacker out in one hit. Notable cards that can take it out in one hit is the ever popular Keldeo EX which is expected to be a popular meta card in this meta too as Blastoise-Keldeo EX , Ether-Keldeo EX and Darkrai EX decks with Keldeo techs will all be popular due to Keldeo EX’s good matchups versus PHB running decks. Other than Keldeo EX however not that much is able to one hit it, bar other Water attackers within Blastoise and Ether acceleration decks.

 

But what’s more important than the Stats, it’s the Abilites and Attacks, so with no Abilites Infernape’s attacks better be powerful, and that’s one thing Infernape doesn’t let us down on. The first attack is called Torment, and Torment the opponent it shall as for 1 Colourless attachment it does 30 damage and allows us to choose one of the opponents active Pokemon’s attacks and prevent it from using it next turn. This means that for a number of Pokemon who are limited to no more than 1 attack, that Pokemon cannot attack at all for the duration of the next turn and for Pokemon such as Mewtwo EX in decks not able to set up both attacks it can help too. The main problem is with Abilites such as Keldeo EX’s and Darkrai EX’s as well as cards such as Escape Rope and Switch, moving between attackers is not hard at all, the one problem is setting them up, which is not that hard in general. As such I don’t believe that the first attack of Infernape is going to make that much of a competitive impact.

 

The second attack on has a much higher damage output of 120 but at quite a cost, while the small attack cost of 1 Fire, 1 Colourless is decent, it is forced to discard all the Energies attached to it in order to attack. While this attack would not be bad on a Basic and the cost is not too bad as there is attachment acceleration available to it in the form of Emboar or Ether, the main problem here is the need to keep swarming Energies and Stage 2 Pokemon and I do not believe to be a competitive plan at the moment for a consistent tournament deck.

 

The main reason for people talking about this card is that it can act as a counter to Klinklang decks which are expected to be popular with the introduction of a brand new Plasma Klinklang, which will be mentioned later, which has the power to prevent EX’s from damaging Metal Pokemon. It can act as a counter because it is able to one hit both Klinklang BW and PLS with a Pokemon Catcher and can also one hit all of Klinklang’s main attacking partners such as the new Coballion EX also mentioned later and other Metal attackers such as Coballion NVI. I don’t think however that despite the decent matchup with that deck this card will be that competitive at the moment, but if Klinklang decks become too popular this card might appear in a couple of meta counter decks.

Competitive Impact Verdict:

 

5 out of 10:

 

Not a bad card at all, but I don’t feel it has a place within a consistent competitive deck at the moment as it’s a Stage 2 that needs to be swarmed out and have some sort of attachment acceleration most of the time, and it does not have good meta matchups all round other than the good Klinklang matchup.

 

Manaphy:

 

Manaphy is the next Pokemon I want to discuss in this set. It’s a Basic Water Pokemon with a Level Ball Searchable HP, Lightning Weakness, no Resistance and One Retreat Cost. The HP is quite low for a Basic Pokemon that does not evolve however it does mean that it is Level Ball Searchable which is excellent, One Retreat Cost is also decent too as with an SAB that would be a 0 Retreat Cost. Most notable meta attackers will one hit this card, although some donk attackers such as Tornadus EX , Mewtwo EX and Landorus EX cannot do more than 60 to this card on the first turn almost all of the time [without some mad first turn attachment acceleration that’s hard to pull off with Ether or Colress Machine or Ho-Oh and attachment movement etc.], and when this card is knocked out it’s not that bad at all because as mentioned later this card’s Ability provide an extra reward when this card is knocked out.

 

But as usual a lot of what makes a card competitive are its Abilities and Attacks. Manaphy has one of each so let us start with its Abilities. It is called Last Wish, and states that when Manaphy is knocked out, we can look into our decks for 1 card of our choice and put it into our hand. An excellent little bonus when this card is knocked out. But the question is how is this card better than rival Abilities such as Roserade DRX, which can be activated whenever it is evolved from Roselia DRX, rather than when the opponent chooses to knockout a Pokemon. Well the main advantage of Manaphy is that it is a Basic Pokemon rather than an evolution so it takes up less room in the deck, and another reason is that Manaphy also has a quite useful attack for certain decks. This means that while overall Roserade DRX is more useful, this card can make it into certain decks where it can work better than Roserade DRX in.

 

The attack is called Seafaring which for one Water attachment allows us to flip 3 Coins and for each head it allows us to attach a Water attachment from the discard pile to a benched Pokemon, which provides another new form of attachment acceleration from a Water Pokemon, but this time on a Basic. While this attack is not that brilliant as for one it needs Energies in the discard pile, second of all it needs decent Coin flips in order to achieve its full potential, and third of all it is an Attack rather than Ability. For that reason a lot of people will dismiss this attack as not consistent enough and class this Pokemon as useless, this Attack however combined with the Ability could make this a decent starter attacker for Water decks providing them with attachment acceleration from turn one as well as Deck Search when its knockout out.

 

Potential combinations with this card include Water attachment required attackers such as Keldeo EX as well as Colourless attachment required attackers such as Mewtwo EX. While there are a lot of Weaknesses to this card and I doubt it will have that much of a competitive impact, I can see lots of potential combinations with this card now and in the future.

 

Competitive Impact Verdict:

 

6 Out of 10:

 

A decent option for Water decks providing turn 1 acceleration and a bonus effect when it’s knocked out. Its acceleration is much weaker to that of Blastoise and it is over reliant on good coin flips sometimes, but I believe it will have some competitive impact, as it quite a useful card.

 

Magnezone:

 

Magnezone is a Stage 2 Lightning Pokemon from the new set with 140 HP, Fighting Weakness, no Resistance and a 3 Retreat Cost. The HP is quite decent for a Stage 2 and without hitting to Weakness, it would be hard to knock out in one go, the main problem is that Fighting is quite popular at the moment and is expected to be for a while longer at least with powerful attackers such as Terrakion NVI and Landorus EX still viable metagame attackers.

 

first of all is the one attack that this Pokemon has, which at the cost of 2 Lightning and 1 Colourless attachment will do 80 damage to the opponent’s have to be switched to another benched Pokemon of each person’s choice. While this is a decent attack and the output is not terrible, the fact that it is on a Stage 2 Pokemon will not make this card’s attack useful in the competitive scene as a main attacker. It’s extra effect is interesting as well, but this will not hurt the opponent too much most of the time, and while it can help this Pokemon Retreat from the Active Position onto the bench, it still needs 3 attachments in order to do so, which means that a Switch would be a much simpler method.

 

So, if this Stage 2 Pokemon’s attacks will not make much of a competitive impact in the game what will make this card useful? The answer is of course its Ability, which appropriately titled “Double Brain”, allows us to use 2 Supporters per Turn, rather than 1 Supporter per Turn, if this Pokemon is on the Bench or in the Active Position. But the real question is, what useful combinations does this card have, and what decks will be able to abuse a power that is no doubt a useful one.

 

All Supporter cards could receive a potential boost from this power. One example however of a card that has been around a number of sets now but has never made an important competitive impact is Hooligans from DEX. Although I doubt this card will become a staple in decks running this Stage 2 Pokemon at all, there’s no doubt that Hand Disruption decks could receive a boost from this card to enable them to use Hooligans and a normal Draw Supporter in the same turn, one important problem that has affected hand disruption decks running Hooligans in the past.

 

Of course it’s not just Rouge Supporters that could see a potential competitive appearance in combination with this Pokemon, infact all Supporter Cards will receive a boost from this card, remember Smeargle UD, a card that was popular for a long time in particular around the time that NXD and DEX came out because it had the potential to allow us to use 2 Supporters per turn, using one that was in the opponent’s hand for ourselves, well now we are able use up to two of our own Supporters, and we don’t need to be in the Active Position to do so. Double Draw Support per turn can be huge, and can enable people to set up potential game winning turns.

 

There are of course a number of downsides to this card that could hold it back. The main important downside to this Pokemon that will hold it back a lot, is that it’s a Stage 2 Pokemon, which requires deck room and set up time in order to work, this is in particular a problem because there are such a lot of useful cards that decks can fit in to their lists rather than this line of cards, so with deck lists so full it will be hard to find room for this card.

Comeptitive Impact Verdict:

 

6 Out Of 10:

 

A brilliant card, which has one of the best Abilities in the game right now, but with deck lists tight and this card taking up far too much room as a “tech” card I doubt this card will make a huge competitive impact, but I predict that with a power as good as this it will be hard for some people to resist.

 

Rotom:

Rotom is a Basic Lightning Pokemon from the new set with 60 HP, Fighting Weakness, no Resistance and a 1 Retreat Cost. The HP is low for a Basic Pokemon that does not evolve and as such most of the main attackers are able to knock this Pokemon out in one hit including a number of notable 1st turn attackers such as Landorus EX, Tornadus EX that will still be expected to be around next format. This could be quite a hindrance for Rotom as it enters the competitive environment.

 

Rotom has no Abilities and a total of 2 attacks, the first of which for 1 Colourless attachment allows us to discard 1 Lightning attachment from our hand and draw 3 cards. This attack is quite nice for draw power as most other notable cards cannot draw more than two cards from the deck for 1 Colourless. Due to the cost of the Lightning however, it makes Rotom much harder to use in most decks, one deck which could benefit from this first attack though are Eelektrik decks, which can use Rotom to get Energies into the discard pile for acceleration and provide extra draw power as well.

 

The main problem with the idea of running this card in Eelektrik is that it makes the Landorus EX matchup even harder than it was before as Landorus EX can knock out Rotom as well as Eelektrik’s prevolutions in one hit with its Hammerhead attack. The three cards that Rotom draws from the deck can be removed without much effort at all as well with the use of a Supporter card such as N, so overall I would recommend remaining with Emolga for now, if the main use for this card is as a set up engine.

 

There is however a second attack on Rotom, one which might infact be even more useful than the first one. For 1 Lightning and 1 Colourless attachment this Pokemon’s second attack does 20X the number of Trainer cards in the opponent’s hand, this attack is in particular useful due to the abundance of Trainer cards that are popular at the moment in most decks, with most decks running around 30 Trainers at least, making this cards average attack power at around 80 damage.

 

In some formats this would not be that useful either as most Pokemon knockout Rotom in one hit without a problem so 80 damage will not be enough to merit its use, however in this format a number of popular attacks are weak to Lightning such as for example Tornadus EX and the new Lugia EX amongst others, and this attacker would have the potential to knock them out in one hit, giving this card a good trade-off with the opponent’s attackers.

 

I’m still not 100 percent convinced of the use of this card however as its HP seems far too low to me, and its damage output is quite inconsistent and enables the opponent to control it to an extent. It is however still a decent card in both Plasma decks with Colress machine giving this card the potential to start attacking from the first turn to Eelektrik decks and even perhaps Ether or metagame counter decks. But I don’t think I will plan to run this card in tournaments.

 

Comeptitive Impact Verdict:

5 Out Of 10:

 

This card does have a number of uses within the current metagame as an attacker with both its first and second attacks, and a number of people have discussed the potential of this card. Due to its low HP however I am not 100 percent convinced that this card will be that useful, but I still expect it to make some competitive impact.

 

 

Crobat:

 

Crobat is a Stage 2 Pokemon with 130 HP, Lightning Weakness, Fighting Resistance and a 0 Retreat Cost. The HP could be a little better for a Stage 2, but as it has an excellent free Retreat Cost it is to be expected, 130 HP is an important number because Pokemon such as the new Lugia EX, as well as most older attackers that are expected to be popular will be unable to knock this card out in one hit without hitting to weakness or without a large cost for example Landorus EX which would need to discard all Fighting Energies attached to it in order to one hit knockout this card, and the reward would not be worthwhile most of the time to knockout this Pokemon at the cost of all those Energies. But of course no Pokemon can be considered to have a competitive impact without decent Abilities and or attacks.

 

1st of all I would like to discuss the Ability of Crobat, which is perhaps one of the simplest around, allowing us to draw 1 card from our deck per turn before our attack. There are better examples of cards that can do similar things for example Empoleon DEX or Musharna NXD which allows us to look at the top two cards in the deck and choose one of them, and it is also a Stage 1 rather than a Stage 2, so as such is easier to set up, and its Ability is better in general. If however this card has a decent attack too, then this Ability while it is not reason enough to run it on its own could act as an extra bonus to running this card.

The good news is that this card does have a rather interesting attack which could have the potential to make a competitive impact of some sort. For 1 Poison, 2 Colourless attachments the card does 40 damage to the opponent’s active Pokemon, that on its own would be useless, however it does have an extra effect of Poisoning the opponent’s active Pokemon, and making Poison do 40 damage in between each turn rather than 40, this is a huge boost as it now means a minimum of 80 damage, which is still quite low for the cost and the fact that it is a Stage 2.

 

Combine this attack with the new Poison Stadium however and Poison damage is doing an extra 20 damage in between turns as well. This would mean that it would be doing a minimum of 100 damage which isdecent. And if the opponent is unable to get the Pokemon out of the active position it will do 160 then make certain of a knockout either with an attack from Crobat or with the next 60 damage of Poison damage.

 

While this sounds immense the main problem is that a lot of the metagame such as Darkrai EX and Keldeo EX cards are able to have Free Retreat through Abilities and other decks which don’t have them will tend to be running high counts of Switch or Escape Rope, this means that most of the time it won’t be able to use Poison for more than one turn which is a downside, although 100 damage is quite decent.

 

While I do love this combination quite a lot, I feel that the main other problem that will hold this deck back will be the number of important cards needed to make the deck work well, and I’m not convinced that a Stage 2 attacker that needs to be streamed and requires multiple Energies to attack

 

 

Competitive Impact Verdict:

5 Out Of 10:

 

I do love the combinations available with this card, but because of how hard it is to stream Stage 2 attackers which need multiple Energies in order to attack, and that fact the most decks will be able to switch out of the active position all the time without much of an issue I expect will hold this card back from making a huge competitive impact. Still remember to look out for this card in League decks though, as it could be a big surprise.

 

Gallade:

 

Gallade is another Stage 2 Pokemon with 140 HP, Poison Weakness, no Resistance and a 2 Retreat Cost. Both the HP and the Retreat Cost are quite standard for Stage 2 Pokemon, so are neither good, bad or indifferent. Most Pokemon will find it quite hard to knockout this Pokemon in one hit without hitting to Weakness for example Mewtwo EX or at a large cost for example Landorus EX’s Land Judgement attack.

 

The 2nd attack can act as a Pokemon Circulator and also does an ok 80 damage for PCC, however most of the time this won’t be the main attack that is used on this card. Instead it’s the 1st attack that I believe to be the most useful attack on Gallade is called “Powerful Storm”, and if its attack is used to its full potential this is quite a fitting name to the attack. For 2 Colourless attachments or perhaps a DCE the attack does 20 damage X the number of Energies attached to all our Pokemon, this will do a minimum of 40 damage with Gallade’s attack, but has a huge extra added bonus in the fact that unlike Pokemon such as Mewtwo EX and Keldeo EX for example the Energies do not all need to be loaded onto one Pokemon, so if that Pokemon is then knocked out it isn’t a huge problem.

 

This attack is brilliant in combination with a number of things. 1st of all it should be noted that as the attack needs Colourless attachments Gallade and the benched Pokemon can use attachment acceleration from all the most popular accelerator from Blastoise BCR to Eelektrik NVI to Colress Machine etc. The most popular combination at the moment appears to be with another Stage 2 Pokemon, which Gallade infact shares its evolution line with, and this Pokemon is Gardevoir NXD. Gardevoir’s Ability allows all Poison Energies attached to the active or benched Pokemon to count as two Energies more than one. This means that Gallade will be doing a minimum of 80 damage with its 1st attack if two Poison Energies are attached, and it can do huge amounts of damage with quite limited attachments.

 

With as little as 3 Energies on the board Gallade is able to one hit knockout a Mewtwo EX with no Energies on it with a Gardevoir out, and with 5 Energies out on the whole board Gallade can one hit knockout all Pokemon in the game if both him and Gardevoir out, which is not too hard to pull off.

 

This combination would be Tier 1 in certain previous metagames however in this one with most decks based around fast attacking Basic Pokemon, a deck that requires two Stage two Pokemon in order to function well, combined with a decent number of Energies is bound to have a lot of problems. While I don’t think it will make the deck bad, I think for certain that it will hold it from making a huge competitive impact although I still expect to see this card make some impact in Rogue decks.

Competitive Impact Verdict:

 

5 Out Of 10:

 

I think this is another interesting Stage 2 card, of which there appears to be quite a number of within this new Pokemon Set of Plasma Storm. I love the attack on this card, and its wide range of potential combinations with different forms of attachment acceleration, however overall I feel that the cards and its partners require too much setup in order for this card to be viable in such a fast metagame. I still expect this card to make some competitive impact however.

 

Lucario:

 

Lucario is a 100 HP, Stage 1, Fighting Pokemon, with a Poison Weakness, no Resistance and a 2 Retreat Cost, and is, as I will mention later on in the review of this card, one of the most interesting Pokemon Cards in this set. 100 HP has both its upsides and downsides; the most important downside of not having 90 HP is that it is not able to be searched out from the deck with Level Ball. While upsides are that this Pokemon will not be knocked out in one attack by Pokemon such as Darkrai EX, Terrakion NVI, Entei EX and all the other popular notable attackers which do 90 damage [bar the use of a Pluspower or a Dark Claw in the case of Darkrai EX]. For me however the HP is still a little bit low and a number of cards including the infamous new attacker Lugia EX will be able to one hit knockout this Pokemon.

 

1st of all I wanted to discuss the Ability which is one of the most interesting Abilities I have seen on a card in a long time, and is unlike all others that are available in the current format. The card states that if this card has a Metal attachment on it, the card can be classified as both Fighting and Metal. At 1st there don’t appear to be a large number of positives to this effect, but then people remember the new Klinklang which I am about to discuss soon.

 

As will be mentioned soon, the new Plasma Strom Klinklang has an Ability which prevents all EX Pokemon’s attacks done to Metal Pokemon. All of a sudden Lucario becomes an interesting potential attacker with Klinklang, as it can use the Blend Energies that it and Klinklang share, and also use the attachment movement, healing, and damage prevention from EX’s that both the Klinklang’s provide to it, as well as providing extra coverage versus Pokemon such as Darkrai EX and Raikou EX as it’s a Fighting attacker, all of this would be useless however if Lucario had a bad attack.

 

There is no need to be disappointed however because Lucario has an interesting attack that for 1 Fighting, 2 Colourless does 60 damage + 30 more damage for each Prize card that the opponent has taken. This means that even if the opponent has taken just one knockout this Pokemon can KO Pokemon such as Darkrai EX and Raikou EX to Weakness and not even be able to be attacked in return if Klinklang PLS is set up as well, unless the opponent has a non-EX attacker.

 

And the better the opponent has been doing, the more damage this Pokemon can do, making it a great late game attacker versus all decks, in particular when combined with a Pokemon Card such as N, to create a great comeback.

 

There are however as with most cards, a number of great drawbacks to using this card. The 1st main drawback of the card is that if it is to be run in combination with the Klinklang’s it will require even more set up than a normal Klinklang deck as it requires a Stage 1 attacker as well as the Stage 2 attackers, which makes it even harder to set up in an even faster paced format than usual with Victini EX donk decks, Colress machine and EtherDex decks all expected to be around along with the normal big speed attackers, which means that most of the time the deck will not set up at all. While I don’t think it’s fair to rule this card and a number of others in the set out all, I think it will hold them back quite a lot from achieving their full potential.

 

Competitive Impact Verdict:

5 Out Of 10:

 

Once more, I love this card but it’s the same problem as with most of the other Stage 1 and 2 reliant decks, in a format with such a wide range of attackers that are able to deal huge damage on the 1st turn, no matter how good cards will be when set up, if there’s a high chance the deck will not set up then it won’t have a large competitive impact. I still wouldn’t rule this card right out however, because the attack is such an immense counter to cards such as Darkrai EX, and it’s an excellent late-game attacker in general, so while I don’t expect it to make a huge competitive impact I would keep a look out for it.

 

Klinklang:

 

Out of all of the Pokemon reviewed in this article of the non-EX Pokemon in the new Plasma Storm Set I feel that this one is set to have the largest competitive impact of all of the new Pokemon. It has 140 HP, Fire Weakness, Poison Resistance and a Retreat Cost of 3. The HP is decent for a Stage 2, but could be higher; the Fire Weakness is to be expected of a Stage 2 Pokemon, but should not be too much of a problem due to the lack of a lot of Fire attackers in the metagame, and how popular Water Pokemon such as Keldeo EX and Articuno EX are at countering them. As usual however the cards competitive impact is decided on its Abilities and Attacks rather than its stats, so let’s skip the poor attack of Klinklang and go straight to its Ability.

 

The ability is called “Plasma Steel”, and it prevents all damage done to Metal Pokemon from the opponents EX attackers. With EX attackers dominating most of the metagame since their original reintroduction back in Next Destinies this Ability is hugely powerful allowing not one Pokemon, but all Metal Pokemon to be untouchable by EX’s.

 

Combine both Klinklang, the popular BW one which allows attachment movement and Max Potion healing, with the new Klinklang PLS, which prevents the opponent’s EX’s attacks even touching Metal Pokemon, and a host of powerful Metal attackers is the basis of a deck which I expect could have a huge competitive impact on the game. This set also sees the release of a big Metal attacker in the form of Cobalion EX, which is just what the deck needed [a powerhouse attacker] to complement the other main Metal attackers such as Cobalion NVI and Registeel EX.

 

While I don’t think that this combination is “broken”, as it requires a number of Energies and also a lot of setup in order to work well. I do feel that this deck is one to be reckoned with and will make a huge competitive impact as perhaps even as a Tier 1 rated deck [although not as good as a BDIF], and as such I love this new Klinklang PLS.

 

Comepetitive Impact Verdict:

8 Out Of 10:

 

Without a doubt I believe this is the best non-EX Pokemon that is planned to be released within the new Plasma Storm set and I have no doubt that it will make a huge competitive impact on our metagame through the combinations mentioned above and other rouge combinations such as the potential pairing with Pokemon such as Durant NVI. This card will no doubt, if people hadn’t switched before force people to run multiple decent non-EX attackers.

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I remember your previous Corner threads, and have enjoyed reading them... good to see it back! It provides some great insight. I espcially liked the bit about Lucario's ability meshing with Klingklang's. We might see some more Garbodor abiliy action coming into play to counter these new abilities.

 

I'll probably comment more, once more of the cards have been reviewed from the PS set.

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About garbodor:

I do run a garbodor/zebstrika deck, and it has a bit more than 50% winrate. Problem is that deck has no BIG damage to support it's blocking capabilities. It's like enemies saying "you can delay me, but u can't defeat me" since most of the enemy pokes are exes with 160+ HP

 

About this thread:

I do love and enjoy reading information about cards and stuff, but I think is kinda too much. I will not say it's a TL;DR thread, but almost. I readed most of it, and you could actually find the way to keep it interesting and fast reading, and still informative at the same time. Maybe by adding images, references, link. we all know dynamic reading is the most effective.

 

About the next set:

You are totally right about Klinklang. I bet the next popular deck will be Klinklang PS / Klinklang BW / Registeel EX / Cobalion / Max potion. since u can combine the power of the 2 klinklangs for huge effective HP, and still have an own EX that blocks other EXes, and a basic metal hardhitter (3E - 80DMG with effect) that still blocks EXes. And maybe a fire deck will finally come out, to counter this metal decks.

 

There's also a lucario comming, that has the ability to become Metal type if a metal energy is attached to him, we'll see how that works.

Ando also a Cobalion EX, metal type hardhitter :D

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Thanks a lot for the feedback. Articles in the future will be a lot more interesting too read in terms of images and stuff, but I'm still getting used to all the text features on PTCGO. I'm going to start getting the next part done as I have some free time right now, and see what I can do to make it more interesting to read.

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Wow, Matthew! These articles are great.

 

Sharing your insights on the game will be a valuable addition to the community.

 

 

Thanks a lot for the positive feedback. Its great to hear such things coming from a moderator. As a reward I have written up a Cities Review Article which I will post below.

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Margate Cities:

 

I decided that I was not to switch to a Blastoise-Keldeo variation which appeared to be the deck that had the most wins in the Senior Division at the time, but instead to remain with the deck I had completed the most testing with and this was another HD variation similar to the list that I have used in both the Battle Road and Regional that I have attended so far. This variation of the deck however was a little different to the previous variations that I have run as it was now more focused on the Prism variation and the use of tech attackers such as Terrakion NVI and Keldeo EX, to help move other matchups into this decks favour. After a large amount of testing with the Prism variation I decided to go with 4 Prism Energies and Terrakion NVI and Keldeo EX as the main tech attackers, I did however at the time not been able to get a hold of the 4th Prism and the Terrakion NVI in time for this tournament so I decided to enter it with this list:

 

Pokemon:16

 

3-1-3 Hydreigon Line DRX

3 Darkrai EX Promo

3 Sableye DEX

1 Keldeo EX BCR

1 Sigilyph DRX

1 Mewtwo EX Promo

 

Supporter:11

 

4 Juniper

4 N

3 Skyla

 

Item: 21

 

3 Dark Patch

3 Max Potion

3 Pokemon Catcher

3 Rare Candies

3 Ultra Ball

2 Giant Cape

1 Level Ball

1 Random Reciever

1 Super Rod

 

Energies:12

 

9 Dark

3 Prism

 

Match 1: Versus ???????? with Landorus EX-Mewtwo EX-Terrakion NVI-Bouffallant DRX

 

Game 1:

 

Two tournaments in a row I have faced Sibon in the 1st round, last time in Regionals and now in Cities, I wanted revenge from last time as it was 1-1 in games and we were in the 3rd match which was Sudden Death, where I was one turn from winning, but he drew a Draw Supporter to get the Level Ball, to get the Roserade DRX, to search his deck for the Switch he needed to win. The bad news for me is that he's now switched decks to what is this deck's worst match-up in the Landorus EX-Mewtwo EX-Terrakion NVI deck. Both of us have decent starts and I am able to set up a decent board in the first few turns while the opponent sets up Landorus EX and Terrakion NVI's. I attempt to stall for time to get the Energies I need to start attacking and in order to do this I use Pokemon Catcher to bring up the second Terrakion with no Energies on it into the Active Position. A couple of crucial Pokemon Catcher's and Switches from the opponent however allow him to knock out two Darkrai EX and at that point in the match I realise the it was all but over for me in this game. I was able to set up another attacker, but in the end the opponent used another of his Pokemon Catcher's to take out the final knockout for the win.

 

Game 2:

 

The opponent starts with Landorus EX and starts to put the pressure on me from the first turn with his Landorus EX, but I still manage to set up a decent board of attackers and evolutions, while the opponent is stuck with almost nothing of use in his hand. The opponent gets out a Tropical Beach and proceeds to draw, but still gets almost nothing of use, while I, despite a brilliant board am missing that all important 3rd attachment in order to start attacking and am forced to pass another couple of turns and use the Tropical Beach too. When I am at last able to set up an attacker, the opponent is able to get out some other attackers onto his bench including Bouffallant DRX and Terrakion NVI with a couple of Ultra Ball's. In a similar manner to the 1st match he is able to take out a couple of knockouts with Terrakion NVI which gives him a substantial lead when time is called. I am able to get the knockout on the Terrakion NVI, leaving him a lone Bouffallant DRX on the board with no Energies onto it, but as time was called 5 turns ago and the game was now over for me, and Sibon was able to take the win.

 

 

0-1

 

Match 2: Versus ???????? with Darkrai EX-Mewtwo EX-Sigilyph-Bouffallant

 

Game 1:

 

He attempts to wall my EX attackers with his Sigilyph DRX, and is able to do so for a number of turns until I am able to set up an effective board of Hydreigon, Darkrai and attackers. I am able at last to set up a Sigilyph DRX of my own however, and am able to retreat into it and knockout the opponent's one by hitting for 160 damage. He is able to get a couple of attacks off with his two Bouffallant taking a couple of knockouts, however I am able to get a couple of crucial Max Potions on my Pokemon and although he had started to set up a bench of Mewtwo EX and Darkrai EX it was too little too late in the game for him, and I was able to sweep with my own Mewtwo EX for the win, knocking out a Mewtwo EX and another Pokemon he had benched with a couple of Pokemon Catcher's to enable me to win the first game.

 

Game 2:

 

This game was quite similar to the first one, except I set up even faster this game, setting up a turn two Hydreigon and attackers, he's able to get out a couple of his attackers and start attacking, taking a couple of knockouts on my Pokemon, but in the end due to a crucial Max Potion I was able to heal up and take the last knockout needed to win this match. A hard fought win, but one that I needed in order to give me a chance of finishing in the Top 4 and getting some points, after that loss in the first round.

 

1-1

 

Match 3: Versus ???????? with Golurk DRX-Mewtwo EX-Techs

 

Game 1:

 

It was clear that the opponent was quite new to the game, and was running a deck that had a number of decent cards, but wasn't as organised as a competitive deck, it turns out that this person had managed to receive his one win, versus an opponent who turned up with a deck full of lots of older set cards which had to be replaced on short notice. I started off with a decent bench, but then disastrous turns were to follow, where I was forced to draw and Confuse Ray for about 8 turns, until I drew a Supporter. I was able to Catcher stall the opponent, by not letting him attack with his Mewtwo EX, which he was loading Energies onto. In the end I did draw a Supporter, and from then on, I steamrolled the game, knocking out two Mewtwo EX with my own Sigilyph and my own Mewtwo EX, then finishing the game with a couple of Night Spears.

 

Game 2:

 

In contradiction to the first game I was able to get a faster set up than before, and once again I steamrolled with my own Darkrai EX and Mewtwo EX on his own Mewtwo EX and Golurk's as well as a couple of other attackers, and this game was without a doubt mine. This was not the most exciting of games as I was quite dominant so there is not much more to discuss here

 

2-1

 

Conclusion:

 

So overall my first ever Cities ended up becoming somewhat of a success, I was disappointed there were no more rounds, as I felt that I could have made it to 3rd place if there was, but I was quite pleased to settle with 4th Place and receive a nice bonus of 30 Championship Points and 4 free Booster Packs. I didn't feel too disappointed about my loss because he ended up winning the whole tournament, and it was a terrible match-up for me, so there was little more I could have done.

 

London Cities:

 

I decided to edit the list that I used last time, to make the Terrakion NVI match-up a little better [although there was still not a huge amount that I could do]. I decided that adding 2 Blends in order to enable me to be able to attack with Hydreigon was going to be crucial in the Terrakion NVI match-up because it would enable me a one hit knockout on Terrakion NVI. I also was able to obtain a Terrakion NVI in trades as well as a 4th Prism from the previous Cities, so I was able to add them into the deck, allowing me to hopefully swing mirror Darkrai EX matches in my favour in this tournament. The list I ended up opting with looks quite obscure but it seemed to be successful in testing for me so here it is:

 

Pokemon:16

 

3-0-3 Hdrei DRX

3 Darkrai EX

3 Sableye DEX

1 Keldeo EX

1 Mewtwo EX

1 Sigilyph DRX

1 Terrakion NVI

 

Supporter:11

 

4 Juniper

4 N

3 Skyla

 

Item: 21

 

3 Dark Patch

3 Max Potion

3 Pokemon Catcher

3 Rare Candies

3 Ultra Ball

2 Giant Cape

1 Level Ball

1 Random Reciever

1 Super Rod

 

Energies: 12

 

6 Dark

4 Prism

2 Blend

 

Match 1: Versus ???????? With Darkrai EX-Hydreigon

 

Game 1:

This was the 1st mirror match I had encountered in Cities so far, I knew that as I was running Terrakion NVI I would have the advantage though, so I was quite confident of a good game for me. We both had quite poor starts and we were both unable to set up a Hydreigon for a number of turns, however I had a much better board than him with Sableye in the active, and Darkrai EX and Deino on the bench. I drew into a Supporter at last a couple of turns into the game, and was soon able to get the ball rolling. I knocked out a Deino I believe with my own Darkrai EX, and was soon able to set up a Terrakion NVI, just as the opponent had started to set up his board completely. I took a couple of knockouts with a Terrakion NVI, and the game was almost over for him, he managed to get out his Shaymin EX and started setting it up, but by that point in the game it was too late and I took the final knockout for the win. It was a shame to get paired up against my friend from league in the first round, but I took the win and moved onto Round two.

 

1-0

 

Match 2: Versus ???????? with Blastoise Keldeo EX

 

Game 1:

 

Charles is the number one ranked Senior in the United Kingdom and has, after getting his 30 Championship points from this tournament, now qualified for the World Championships in Canada. As such I knew this would be a hard match for me, and although I fought hard it turns out that I had two Hydreigon unavailable to me, so by the time I was able to set one up it was too late and Charles ended up steamrolling me with his Keldeo and Mewtwo EX's. There was not too much more to discuss here, as it was a horrible game for me.

 

1-1

 

Match 3: Versus ???????? with Garbodor-Landorus EX-Terrakion EX-Mewtwo EX

 

Game 1:

 

I had seen him earlier in the tournament running this deck and I knew what to expect, this is one of this deck's worst if not infact its worst match-up of all. The good news for me was that he wasn't running Terrakion NVI, but I knew it would still be a nightmare of a match-up for me. I was able to start first for the only time in both of the Cities events that I attended I believe in this game, and I was also blessed with an immense first hand, and was able to set up a turn two Hydreigon and soon start attacking. I took a quick lead in this game, using Keldeo EX and two Prisms to OHKO the Landorus EX he had started with, and then Sigilyph to two hit knockout a Mewtwo EX. At this point I thought I had the game, however the match was about to take a massive turn for the worst when he was able to set up both a Garbodor and a Terrakion EX as well. He managed to OHKO a benched Darkrai EX with Pokemon Catcher and then proceeded to knockout a Keldeo EX with all the Energies on it due to the Ability lock from Garbodor. At this point the game was even, and because of a crucial Gold Potion from the opponent it looked like all was other. I was however able to Pokemon Catcher his Garbodor twice leaving it in the active position stranded with no Energies and 90 damage on it from an earlier attack from Keldeo EX. The opponent was struggling to find his 3rd Switch and was forced to pass for a number of turns until at last I was able to manually set up a Mewtwo EX, retreat into it, and knockout the Garbodor. The opponent was able to get some attacks off with Terrakion EX. But in the end I was able to stop him from taking knockouts and won the game.

 

2-1

 

Match 4: Versus ???????? with Darkrai EX-Mewtwo EX-Bouffallant-Hammers

 

Game 1:

 

We are into the final round, and I knew that if I wanted a chance at getting into the top cut, I needed to win this game. I was matched up versus the one 3-0 in the tournament, who had received a large amount of luck from previous matches achieving two donks in two of his games, one of which was with a Mewtwo EX + DCE + 2 Pluspowers on either the first or second turn I believe. I knew this was going to be a tough match, in particular when I saw he was running Crushing and Enhanced Hammers in his deck, making my Special Energies almost useless. We were both able to set up quite well and we were trading blows with each others attackers. I was able to get a couple of important Max Potions off, but he was also able to get heads on all three Super Scoop Up's he used in that game, making it quite even. In the end due to a couple of dead draws from me, and choosing the wrong Pokemon to Max Potion at one point, I ended up losing what was a fun, but excruciatingly long game.

 

2-2

 

Conclusion:

 

Due to an Opponents Opponent's resistance I was able to finish in 4th place again. And another 4th Place makes two in a row, providing me with another 30 Championship points and 4 free packs. These two Cities have been a great learning experience for me, as I'm still quite new to the game, its been a great place to meet people and get good trades, and also a great place for competition and learning how to improve. As I continue on throughout the season and hope to push on and keep improving my game until its reached its full potential I will look back on these Cities and see how important these two tournaments were for me. This will I imagine be one of the last times I use my Darkrai EX-Hydregion deck, a deck that I have grown to love over the past months, and one that has served me a decent amount of success, however I still feel that the Darkrai EX-Hydregion deck and in particular the Prism variation are really underrated at the moment and will continue to be in the next sets, so when looking for a strong versatile deck I would recommend nothing other than Darkrai-Hydreigon. Thanks a lot for reading this article, and I wish you all success in the future.

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Victini EX:

 

“Victini EX is a 110 HP EX Fire Pokemon, with a Weakness to Water, no Resistance and a 1 Retreat cost.”

 

The HP is quite low compared to most EX’s that are around at the moment, and this leaves the card with a number of potential problems as it’s a weak and frail EX. Most older popular attackers won’t be able to knockout this Pokemon without hitting to Weakness or at a large cost, but new Pokemon such as Lugia EX, a card that is expected to be quite a popular attacker will be able too, and also Pokemon such as Keldeo EX which hit to Weakness will be able to knock it out with no problem whatsoever. As I will mention later in the article

 

“I believe it will be the HP that lets this card down.”

 

Victini EX has two attacks, neither of which appears inspirational at first.

 

“The first attack, for 1 Fire attachment, searches the deck for 2 Basic Energies and enables

us to attach them to benched Pokemon, however we please.”

 

There have been similar attacks to these in the past, in particular on EX’s, but none of them have ever been used in competitive action, this one is a little better however as it enables us to take 2 Energies from the deck rather than the usual 1 attachment provided, and there’s no coin flip. This could provide some decent attachment acceleration on the first couple of turns, something which has been missing for a while, the main problem with this however is not the fact that it requires an attachment to use, and not even that much the fact that it’s an attack. Indeed the problem once again all comes down to its HP. The attachment acceleration is useful, but Victini EX ends up becoming a sitting duck worth two or three knockouts in the active or the bench ideal for a Pokemon such as Landorus EX, Keldeo EX, Lugia EX to Pokemon Catcher out in order to win the game.

 

“The second attack for 2 Fire Energies and 1 Colourless attachment does 50 damage to the to the opponent’s active Pokemon or 100 damage if it’s an EX Pokemon.”

 

EX counter attackers such as Bouffallant DRX have been popular within the recent metagame and Victini EX’s attack is quite similar to Bouffallant, except for a number of points, Victini EX’s attack does a little less damage, it can’t use all Colourless Energies, and it’s an EX, so overall it’s not a rival attacker to that of Bouffallant DRX at all. Except we have to bear in mind that Victini EX has one little bonus up its sleeve that might help it make a competitive impact after all. And that is the brand new Ace Spec in this set called Victory Piece, an Ace Spec that will be mentioned later in the article, but one that gives Victini EX a huge boost, by allowing to use its attacks without needing to have the Energies required.

 

“The Victory Piece ACE SPEC gives Victini EX a huge boost, as its able to attack from turn one onwards with its ACE Spec, using cards such as Skyla to search it from the deck on the first turn.”

 

With a Pluspower and its ACE Spec it is then able to do 60 damage on the first turn, which is enough to knockout most of the most popular competitive prevolutions before the opponent is able to start setting up and it could also lead to a potential donk situation, it can also attack EX’s for a huge 100 damage on the first turn, and do 200 damage to Pokemon such as Cobalion EX, before the opponent is able to set up the Klinklang PLS lock, and this huge attacking power at the start of the game might make up for its lack of HP, as it might stop the opponent from being able to get attackers set up to knockout Victini EX.

 

“The main problem with this deck is that only one Victory Piece can be run per deck, and most decks have room for at least one Tool Scrapper.”

 

If Victory Piece is unavailable then Victini EX will fine find it hard to attack at all, and with Tool Scrapper and the chance of it being one if the six cards is far too high to make this a competitively viable tournament idea on its own. I have been thinking however about other potential combinations to work with Victini EX in order to make the card better. I decided that using Sable DEX to return Items from the discard pile would be the best route, as it would enable me to return the ACE SPEC card to my hand and make it re-usable. As Victini EX won’t need Fire Energies, there is room in the deck for Dark Energies and Dark Patches etc, so Pokemon such as Sable DEX, and backup attackers such as Darkrai EX can be useful cards in this deck, and might help it solve its main problems.

 

Competitive Impact:

 

“6 out of 10:”

 

There is no doubt that this card has a lot of potential, and I would expect it to make a decent competitive impact, but at the moment I feel that the HP is too little for an EX like this, which needs a whole deck focused around it, and as such it’s going to have a lot of problems versus Pokemon such as Keldeo EX and Lugia EX in particular, and potentially be quite an inconsistent deck as well in larger tournaments. I’m not going to rule it out at all, but I just feel that there are better, more consistent EX’s out there at the moment.

 

 

[Note: Ok I decided to format the EX's a little different, let me know what u think of each of the reviews and if its better than before. Also please feedback on thoughts about the Pokemon I have reviewed.]

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