“3 Under the Radar Decks for Upcoming Nationals”
Hello 60cards readers! Jose Marrero again and I’m back with another article. This time I’ll be talking about 3 decks that I feel are some what under the radar and may see play at upcoming Nationals. I’ll explain the decks and give lists for each one as discussed. So let’s get right into it.
Table of Contents:
First up, we have the Empoleon deck that has recently added a new partner in it. Which is the Miltank that was released most recent in the Flashfire set. This deck has made top 8 at 3 different Nationals. Which are Poland,Norway, and France. While 2 of the 3 making it to the top 4. I would have to say Miltank is the reason why this deck has had a good amount of success. Miltank’s attack (Powerful Friends) does 10 base damage and if you have a stage 2 pokemon in play it does an additional 70 damage. And that's just for 1 Colorless Energy. You can see how powerful Miltank can be. Especially if you can pull off a Turn 2 attack.
Although, this decks toughest match up would have to be Plasma decks. A quick Lugia EX can be really devastating for this deck. If Lugia EX gets 3 attacks off well just like that the games over. But, one of this decks strongest match ups would have to be decks that rely on Fire Pokemon. Such as Charizard and Pyroar decks. Empoleon goes through Pyroar’s ability (Intimidating Mane) which negates all damage done to Pyroar from attacks done by your opponent's Basic Pokemon. So since Empoleon is not a basic pokemon he can easily 1 shot Charizard and Pyroar being that they are both weak to water pokemon.
Here is the list that took a top 4 finish at Norway Nationals. Shout out to Richard Andersen for sharing his list with us and piloting the deck to a good finish.
1 Jirachi EX
3 Tropical Beach
4 Rare Candy
4 Level Ball
4 Ultra Ball
3 Muscle Band
2 Startling Megaphone
1 Super Rod
1 Silver Mirror
1 Escape Rope
1 Dowsing Machine
7 Water Energy
4-1-4 Empoleon: There is a heavy Empoleon line mainly because of the fact that you need him to make your Miltank’s attack do that extra damage. He is also used as one of your main and back up attacker. Setting up multiple Empoleon is key in this deck. You want to just swarm them and deal out tons of damage right away. His ability makes an opposing N less threatening against you. While making your N's much more effective at the same time.
2-0-2 Dusknoir: More heavier than a 1-0-1 line because Dusknoir is really important in this deck. Moving around damage is key for setting up multiple KO’s in a single turn.
1 Jirachi EX: This guy is in here because he is just too good not to be. You already play a heavy amount of Balls. So having a pokemon with 90 or less hp that can grab a supporter is really nice for when your hand is dead. Which is why a spot for him is well worth it.
2 Lysandre: Since you don’t run Pokemon Catcher, Lysandre is the better choice in a deck like this. Now you don't have flip to drag up something that you want to hit. Lategame they can be game winners. Having draw power like Empoleon makes playing Lysandre extremely worth it. Empoleon’s ability (Dive in Draw) allows you to draw 2 cards for discarding 1 card from your hand. Which is really nice when you combo it with Exeggcute. This way you can dig for those Lysandre if needed.
1 Silver Mirror: This card can be really clutch against Plasma decks and against Genesect EX. A single copy can buy you a turn or 2. Which can be a huge game changer against those decks.
You can see how this list ran pretty smooth. So much consistency going on here. You may notice that he opted not to play a single copy of Professor Juniper. Which means he thought every resource was needed and should be used wisely. He didn't want to have to discard key cards that he may need later on in the game. So I agree with opting not to play Professor Juniper. One thing he did play is high amounts of Ultra and Level Balls. Which is one of the key factors as to why the deck is so consistent. Getting multiple Piplups in play is really important in a deck like this where you need a big bench to dish out tons of damage. Other than that everything else is pretty standard and straight forward.
Next up, we have Flygon. That when paired with Accelgor and Dusknoir becomes a really powerful deck. Flygon’s ability (Sand Slammer) does 10 damage in between turns to all of your opponents pokemon. So while doing this you can stack up tons of damage and then you can combo it with Dusknoir’s (Sinister Hand) ability. Which let’s you move as much damage as you want from any of your opponent’s pokemon to another pokemon. Accelgor’s attack (Deck and Cover) does 50 base damage and does auto poison and paralyze. So this guy helps stack that extra damage as well so you can move it later on. He also keeps your opponent locked in place because of the the paralyzation. Which is a really devastating attack if your opponent is unable to switch out or negate it with Virizion EX or anything else that can stop it.
Here is the list that took 2nd place at Singapore Nationals. Shout out to Jeremy Leong for doing well with the deck and sharing his list with us.
1 Mewtwo EX
3 Professor Juniper
3 Tropical Beach
3 Level Ball
3 Ultra Ball
3 Float Stone
2 Max Potion
4 Rare Candy
1 Enhanced Hammer
2 Startling Megaphone
1 Sacred Ash
1 Pal Pad
1 Dowsing Machine
4 Double Colorless Energy
3-1-3 Flygon: Most Flygon decks probably run a 4-1-4 line but I can see where a 3-1-3 line works just as fine. He probably wanted space for other key cards.
3-3 Accelgor: Pretty standard here. Most lists probably run a 3-3 line.
2-0-2 Dusknoir: Again pretty standard. This deck does not function too well without Dusknoir. He's a big part of making the deck successful. Which is why there isn't just a 1-0-1 line.
1 Mewtwo EX: He's a nice tech against cards like Yveltal EX and other Mewtwo EX’s. He’s just a quick attacker that can dish out a decent amount damage right away.
1 Enhanced Hammer: I like this tech. Can be really clutch against Plasma decks. Since Lugia is probably your biggest threat. If a Flygon can surive that extra turn. It can be well worth it in the long run.
1 Evosoda: This was probably added for the fear of Archeops. Which makes sense. It's also just a good card that let's you evolve without discarding anything like Ultra Ball does. Although you can't grab a basic pokemon with it. But that doesn't matter when you already play a heavy amount of Balls.
Pretty consistent list I would say. It has high amounts of Balls and Tropical Beach counts. Which is probably the way to go in a deck like this. Where it rely’s on Tropical Beach to set up. Everything else seems pretty standard aside from the 1 Enhanced Hammer which again can be nice against decks that rely on special energy. Such as Plasma or Aromatisse decks.
Lastly, we have the Weavile/Lopunny deck. This deck made top 8 at two different Nationals along side Empoleon/Miltank. This deck is strong because you now have Lopunny to combo with your Exeggcute's. Weavile’s attack (Vilify) does 30 damage times the number of pokemon you discard from your hand. Now, Lopunny’s ability (Big Jump) let’s you return all cards attached to it to your hand. In other words you now have 2 extra pokemon to discard for Weavile’s attack. So when comboing Lopunny and Exeggcute’s you can 1 shot EX’s. Which is really strong seeing as Weavile is a non EX pokemon. So trading 1 prize for 2 is really nice and can keep you up on the prize trade.
Here is the list that took top 8 at Norway Nationals. Shout out to David Jensen for piloting this deck to a good finish and sharing his list with us.
2 Jirachi EX
4 Professor Juniper
1 Random Receiver
2 Pal Pad
4 Dark Patch
4 Level Ball
4 Ultra Ball
3 Startling Megaphone
2 Super Rod
1 Scoop Up Cyclone
8 Dark Energy
4-4 Weavile: Pretty standard seeing how he’s basically your only attacker aside from Sableye. Which is why you want to max him out.
4-3 Lopunny: A new addition to the deck which is why there’s a heavy line. Lopunny's ability let's you return all cards attached to it to your hand. In other words you now have 2 more pokemon to throw away for Weavile's attack. So this is why Lopunny plays a huge part in the deck.
2 Sableye: Sometimes you may use resources too fast or you simply just run out. So you may need to Junk Hunt resources back such as Dark Patch or Ultra Balls. Having access to these guys can help in the long run.
2 Jirachi EX: Since this deck’s main attacker is a non EX pokemon. It makes playing multiple Jirachi EX worth it. You already play a heavy Ball count. So playing multiple Jirachi EX insures you that you don’t have dead hands.
2 Pal Pad: This deck runs a low amount of supporters. So playing a few copies of these are really nice and well worth it.
3 Startling Megaphone: Seeing as your main focus in this deck is to get all your Exeggcute into your discard pile and reusing them over and over again for Ball cards and for Weavile’s attack. Playing a heavy amount of these cards can keep you in the game against decks that play Garbodor.
1 Scoop Up Cyclone: This Ace Spec is interesting to say the least. Most Weavile decks probably play Dowsing Machine over the others. But I can see where this card can be clutch at times. For those spots where you have Weavile ready to go but can’t retreat active or don't have Lopunny active. Well here’s your answer. Even though you usually just want to have Lopunny active to pick up and do the same thing. Scoop Up Cyclone just gives you that extra pick up card that can be used nicely. It can also be used to reuse Jirachi EX or to just pick him back up so your opponent doesn't get those 2 free prizes. So I can see the reasoning behind Scoop Up Cycone.
This deck is pretty consistent seeing how it plays a heavy amount of Ball and Jirachi EX counts. I don’t see a time where you will dead draw with 2 Jirachi EX in the deck. I would say one of your worst matchups is probably decks that play Garbodor in them. So playing a heavy amount of Startling Megaphones is key in these matchups. He probably expected quite a good amount of Garbodor decks. Which made him opt to play 3 Startling Megaphones instead of the standard 1-2. I like this decision. I would personally be scared to play against Garbodor decks as well. So having that extra edge is nice.
Well that will conclude this article. I hope these decks give you more options for upcoming Nationals and I hope you do well. Should you decide to play one of these or not. I hope you enjoyed this article and I hope to see everyone at Nationals. Keep an eye out for more article’s to come. Until next time.