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Kevin Kobayashi

Top 10 cards of the current format

An insights into my head about top 10 cards.

12/03/2014 by Kevin Kobayashi

Dear friends and others. I was so fortunate to find this free blog here on 60cards where I can share my thoughts and ideas (:and win boosters:). Anyway I proudly present you ..


Top 10 cards of the current format

Donphan PLS

We begin with the elephant in the room. It shouldn’t be a surprise to any seasoned player as to why Donphan is #1 on the list. What was most likely a mistake by the card creators has become the unanimous strongest deck in the game. Donphan has tons of options regarding ways to wall other decks out of the game, and does an excellent job at prize denial with cards such as Sigilyph, Suicune, Outrage dragons (Kyurem, Zekrom, Reshiram), and the new Substitute Robot trainer card. Donphan is able to start pumping out huge damage turn 2, and can quickly close out a game if the player draws well enough. With Fighting stadium and Strong energy, it’s easy to see why Donphan has become such a powerhouse. The deck is flooding metagames everywhere and currently has the most city championship victories under its belt, and I expect a very steady amount of Donphan throughout the rest of this season’s city championships.



Seismitoad EX

When Seismitoad EX was first released, we saw an abundance of players confused on to how to properly play the card. Some players paired it with fire attackers, others with Garbodor (which I believe is the best current variant), but regardless of how the toad was played, it has secured many players top cut spots and tournament victories over the fall regional tournament series. Seismitoad EX is in a very favorable spot right now, and I was tempted to rank it as the #1 card in the game currently. It is extremely versatile, only requiring a Double Colorless energy to start locking out your opponent’s trainer cards. It can splash into a ton of decks and even gives some decks ways to win games that were previously unavailable. Some decks before were much too slow to keep up with the strong EX cards, but including a couple of Seismitoad EX in those decks has improved their matchups vs the field significantly. The card has a variety of uses and can even be used as its own deck with Hypnotoxic laser and Enhanced Hammer. Although Seismitoad may have not shown up in huge numbers for week 1, expect the deck to stick around not only for cities, but the rest of the season. Invest in your full art playsets and get to punching!

Manectric EX

It’s astounding to me how some players completely disregarded Manectric EX, and still continue to berate the card. I think that it’s easily one of the top cards in the game and upon release I purchased a playset immediately. Just looking at the card at hand, it’s not difficult to figure out why the card is good. Overrun is nothing to scream about, but Assault Laser is the sole reason why this card is so powerful. With the introduction of the new Team Flare tools, Manectric EX comes out of Phantom Forces with weapons already included. Head Ringer is the strongest Flare tool at the moment, and pairing Head Ringer with Manectric EX seems like common sense to me. If you can attach a Head Ringer to one of your opponent’s EX Pokemon and then attack with Assault Laser in that same turn, your opponent is going to be very far behind. 120 for 2 is extremely strong, the mega isn’t even required. I wouldn’t sleep on Manectric EX, I think it’s going to start claiming cities in the upcoming weeks as Donphan becomes the deck to counter. Expect to see more Manectric decks as people figure out what the card pairs well with. Personally, I don’t think the mega is good enough to warrant playing.

Yveltal EX

Yveltal EX is a very interesting card. Not in the sense of playability, but the way that it always seems to show up prepared for any metagame and stomp. During Fall regionals, Yveltal was the obvious play for week 1, and a few months later it still could be considered “the play”, especially if your metagame is flooded with Donphan. When building this deck, be sure to evaluate your trainer card options. While Virbank City Gym and Hypnotoxic Laser certainly seem like the best trainers to pair Yveltal with, Shadow Circle, Hard Charm and even Scoop Up Cyclone are becoming extremely viable options and should not be overlooked. Manectric is seeing enough play to effectively use Shadow Circle, and if your opponent is unable to hit for weakness it gives you a very large edge. Donphan has to hit through your resistance and if you play tools like Hard Charm, it makes it that much more difficult for Donphan to ever knock you out. I would not disregard Yveltal and how could you? It’s already winning enough cities to warrant it as a true threat, and is still top tier in a constantly changing meta game.


Initially I was not a fan of steel. I felt that the deck was lackluster, and I couldn’t seem to discover an engine that set up fast enough while still being able to draw consistently. I even told my testing partners that I thought the deck was terrible! Now that I have figured out how steel should play, I definitely would consider it a tier 1 deck.The lists fluctuate but what’s so wonderful about steel and Bronzong in general is that it can play an abundance of attackers. With so many options, it’s really difficult to deal with, and can easily sweep metagames full of decks such as Donphan, Yveltal and the like. The steel attackers are all powerful in their own regard as well. Dialga EX provides heavy damage and walling, Aegislash is a special energy wall, Heatran mows through Donphan and is a strong non ex attacker that can hit through safeguard. You can even fit in Mewtwo EX, which still wreaks havoc on unprepared opponents. If you can’t seem to figure out why your steel list isn’t performing, I would suggest to keep trying to make it work out. The deck is very powerful once you figure out how to build a strong list, and I regret sleeping on it for the first week of cities. It is the best answer to Donphan in my opinion.

Mew EX

Let me begin by saying this. The first person to successfully break Mew EX has the potential to completely change the format. The question is, is anyone up to that challenge? Currently, Mew has a very strong base in Night March, a deck that will do much better as the weeks pass. The current lists are decent, but they will only improve and I think the difference between an average and good Night March list is substantially noticeable. However, the current card pool seems almost too perfect for Mew EX. You have heavy damage options in Manectric, lock options with Seismitoad, and there are even damage reduction cards such as Jamming net and Hard charm, which might prove necessary to negate the frailty of Mew. Dimensional Valley opens up many options that previously were unavailable for Mew, and I am excited to see who can come up with the strongest mew deck. For now, Night March is the best deck featuring mew.


Ahh, the deck that everyone loves to pretend doesn’t exist. I constantly find players “taking the loss” to Pyroar, yet still managing to win tournaments. Why is this? Well, the truth is, the deck is severely underplayed and for some valid reasons. An early game Seismitoad EX shuts the entire deck down, and despite Seismitoad not being able to attack Pyroar directly, many toad decks run a heavy count of Hypnotoxic laser, Enhanced hammer, and Virbank City gym. All 3 cards prove fatal to Pyroar. This is a really large issue for Pyroar, but I think that the deck is starting to take different approaches to become successful. This week we saw a couple of Pyroar/Seismitoad do well at cities, and it’s because the players of the decks decided to take a different approach, playing their own Seismitoad to slow down the pace of the game and using the Pyroar from Phantom Forces to lock up threats with Intimidating Mane, then using Seismitoad’s Quaking Punch to lock those Pokemon active. I am liking Pyroar more and more as I continue to test different variations of it, but my advice regarding whether to take the loss or not really stems down to your specific area. If you see that there are quite a bit of Pyroar, you probably want too tech for it. If not, then you should be fine to take the loss. Regardless, I think it will become a staple deck in the meta game sooner than later.

Head Ringer

The first trainer card to hit the top 10 and for good reason. Head Ringer is a new Team Flare tool that punishes your opponent for playing EX Pokemon. Most of the field is EX Pokemon, so the card will always prove useful. It soft counters cards such as Virizion, Seismitoad, and other powerful EX cards. I think that this card pairs well with Seismitoad and Manectric the best. I have been testing 3 and 4 counts of the card and I can’t really decide which I like better. I think it mainly depends on what the goal of your deck is. If you’re looking to be really aggressive and have room to fit 4, then I think that’s probably the best route. Taking up the tool slot on your opponent’s Pokemon is too good to not use, and you ca further abuse this with Seismitoad who locks the tool on your opponent’s Pokemon unless they play Xerosic, but currently Xerosic sees very little play. This card is powerful, and very useful. I could even see 1 of tech Head Ringers having significant impact on the outcome of a game. That’s simply how strong this card is,

VS Seeker

If you don’t understand why VS Seeker is good, then I suggest playing with a couple of copies in your deck for a few games. I’ll put it in very simple terms. This card is a life saver. This was the best possible reprint we could have received. You no longer have to play 4 of supporters in your deck, and this allows for much more fluent deckbuilding. No more jamming 4 N into your deck, 4 Juniper or copious amounts of Skyla, because VS Seeker retrieves them from the discard! It’s time to check your binder for all those old full art supporters that you’ve been holding on to. Iris suddenly becomes playable! I have been playing with no less than 3 VS Seeker in every one of my decks and I am loving it.





Jirachi EX

Figuring out what to consider as the 10th best card in the format was such a struggle, but in the end I had to go with Jirachi EX. An average player may be unable to figure out why Jirachi is such a powerful card, but it is very easy to see. Consistency means everything. If you are unable to use a supporter on your first turn, unless you get very lucky, you start very behind and in most common situations,you lose the game right there. Almost every deck plays at least 2 copies of Ultra Ball, which only makes Jirachi even better. The card only takes up 1 space, but has won me so many close games that I include it in every list that I make. Although Jirachi only has 90 hp, it provides too much utility to ignore. With VS Seeker in format, it just makes Jirachi that much stronger. I don’t think I would feel comfortable playing a deck without Jirachi, and Jirachi will continue to be used in all of my lists as long as the card is in format. You simply can’t afford to lose games based on dead draw.



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