Two Surprises in Standard!
Hey 60card readers, I’m here to talk about the recent results of Florida Regionals and the SPIEL Special Premier Event I attended myself.
11/02/2016 by Mees Brenninkmeijer
When I first started testing I was mainly focussed on the mainstream decks, because of their familiarity (Greninja) or raw power (Volcanion). Going into my first event I was planning on simply playing Volcanion, especially because of it’s power in gameplay (the Special Event ran with the old 30 minutes gameplay Swiss) since it doesn’t matter too much if you go first or second. The week before the tournament I started working on the Mega Gardevoir deck I built for a fun League Challenge and was pretty quickly sold on it’s power. I think I played over a hundred games with the deck before it reached it’s final version, after discussing it a lot with the other Sheep (Curtis Lyon, Brit Pybas, Kevin Kobayashi and Dean Nezam) we agreed on basically 59 cards. The list I ended up playing was only one card different to his, being a Fairy Drop, which I completely agreed on after my tournament concluded.
The list I played was exactly how I liked it, simple but strong in concept, while keeping your options open with mainly trainer “tech”. This manifested itself into a Mega Gardevoir list that didn’t really focus much on one hit knock outs as one might expect, but more on the fast and consistent damage it can deal while having the absolute best stats in the game. It’s weakness is just slightly worse than no weakness with Mega Scizor seeing next to no play, dark resistance for the always popular dark decks and dual typing of psychic to counter Mega Mewtwo decks and fairy to deal with Giratina EX, which is normally a big nuisance for Mega decks. In effect, this means the card is good with just a vanilla attack that deals 110 for 2 energy. What makes it even better is that it’s attack helps you deny prizes by cleaning up your bench, while also making it easy to reuse your aggressive Shaymin engine for the mid- and late-game and is able to score crucial one hit knock outs on non EX Pokemon and EX pokemon not equipped with Fighting Fury Belt. This is also the reason we ended up including Giovanni’s Scheme, as a way of extending our reach and sometimes scoring crucial final one hit knock outs to seal the game. Another card used to make Mega Gardevoir trade better versus a multitude of decks is Fairy Drop, which is a fairy “exclusive” and goes perfectly into this deck. It’s basically a heal without any downside, which makes it awesome to include and I was sad that I didn’t choose to run more of these.
- 3x M Gardevoir EX
- 3x Gardevoir EX
- 1x Gardevoir EX
- 4x Shaymin EX
- 3x Hoopa EX
- 2x Professor Sycamore
- 1x N
- 1x Giovanni's Scheme
- 2x Hex Maniac
- 1x Lysandre
- 1x Karen
- 4x Sky Field
- 4x VS Seeker
- 4x Trainer's Mail
- 4x Ultra Ball
- 4x Gardevoir Spirit Link
- 3x Super Rod
- 3x Escape Rope
- 2x Mega Turbo
- 1x Repeat Ball
- 1x Fairy Drop
- 8x Fairy Energy
Because of how Mega Gardevoir operates, some more unconventional choices are made for the deck. The extremely high recovery, three Super Rod and Karen, is there to deal with the discards of Mega Gardevoir while not running out of steam. We opted for Escape Rope over Float Stone because there is usually not a card that is safe for your own discards except Gardevoir EX, which you want to attach Gardevoir Spirit Link to so you can quickly Mega Evolve. This means we have no reliable target for Float Stone and rather play something with more utility. Additionally, Escape Rope can help you draw easy prizes of your opponent’s Shaymin EX and Hoopa EX (Hoopa EX has weakness, making it an easy one hit knock out without even discarding anything) or deal with Yveltal’s Fright Night ability. Repeat Ball is a card that functions very well in a deck that will open Hoopa EX or Shaymin EX more than 50% of the time, since searching out either is fine to start up your set up. I essentially ran this as the 5th Ultra Ball in my list, and I liked it’s function for that. In the end, it’s sadly not comparable because it doesn’t have the discard that makes your Shaymin EX’s Set Up ability stronger. We run Mega Turbo in case we fall behind on attachments and need to catch up, one issue I have with them is that they are sometimes hard to hit when you are forced to shuffle energy back into your deck with Super Rod. This requires some interesting planning of your turns. It also helps getting a turn two Mega Gardevoir attack by allowing you to retreat Shaymin EX and still have the energy necessary to attack. Overall, all the cards help you get a quick Mega Gardevoir that’s ready to attack on the second turn.
The Supporter’s shouldn’t look too unfamiliar to anyone who has played a deck with a high Shaymin EX engine. We run a lot of different strong non draw Supporters and VS Seekers to recycle them whenever we need. It’s too bad we don’t have Battle Compressor anymore, but just the aggressive nature of this deck makes up for a lot of it. As explained earlier, we run Giovanni’s Scheme as an additional damage source and potential out on N. Double Hex Maniac is mostly for the Volcanion and Greninja matchup, but Hex Maniac coupled with some quick attacks can easily dismantle any deck. With our Shaymin Engine we’re often able to play this at the end of the turn, without running out of cards ourself. N is in there for comebacks, which is a lot more fruitful than you would expect from such an aggressive deck. This is mainly because Mega Gardevoir can manage it’s bench so easy and because we have access to Fairy Drop, which makes it hard to effectively deal with Mega Gardevoir. Professor Sycamore is mainly to deal with “brick” hands, when you can’t draw extra cards with Shaymin EX’s Set Up because of a bunch of (currently) unplayable cards. It’s also your strongest out for N to a low amount when facing Garbordor’s Garbotoxin.
Finally we arrive at Sky Field, which is a great asset in this deck. It allows you to do more damage, use Shaymin EX and Hoopa EX more aggressively without the ability to still play down some Gardevoir EX. It’s nice that you don’t actually rely on it, which makes facing Parallel City a lot less painful than for most Sky Field decks.
Mega Gardevoir Matchups
This matchup comes down to speed and Hex Maniac, if you have a chance to take an early lead by effectively dealing with Volcanion before Volcanion EX is set up, you’re in good shape. If they don’t get a quick Fighting Fury Belt it’s easy for you to deal with Volcanion, you only need to discard two basic Pokemon. If they have Fighting Fury Belt it’s pretty often worth it to still just grab the one hit knock out, simply to set them back in their set up. Don’t hesitate to one hit knock out a Volcanion EX when you get the chance, as this is essentially the biggest swing you can have in this matchup. Later in the game, when Volcanion has used up a good deal of their resources, you can take great advantage of your Fairy Drop and retreating around, which makes it very hard for Volcanion to still score a one hit knock out. However, if you fail to attack quickly and Volcanion is able to build a lead, the game will be very uphill for you, especially if you have trouble hitting Hex Maniac at the right times.
Another matchup where speed and Hex Maniac are key to winning. In fact, speed is such a big issue in this matchup that I think it’s mostly decided by who goes first or not, without a very big chance to come back. Once Greninja gets to a point where they have Greninja Break, and are using Ace Trainer and N to keep your hand low during Shadow Stitching, it becomes hard to win. I’ve thought about playing Pokemon Ranger to combat this effect somewhat, but decided just a draw Supporter is usually better. In the end though, if you get a good chain of Hex Maniac and deal with Faded Town quickly every time you can still make a chance if you get a slower start, especially when you combine this with crucial Fairy Drop heals over the course of the game.
One of the big reasons to play this deck, this is probably one of the most lopsided matchups you will ever play versus one of the most popular decks right now. You have low energy, hit for weakness and you’re even faster. This game is a dream for you and a nightmare for anyone playing Mega Mewtwo. There’s not much to say about this matchup, set up a Mega Gardevoir and draw six prizes in three turns.
This matchup is quite bad, since you effectively try to do the same thing but Mega Rayquaza simply out damages you. You can win by having early Hex Maniac so that they can’t set up, while keeping the pressure on yourself and engaging into a Shaymin EX race pretty quickly. You can run a Parallel City for this matchup, since it doesn’t actually hurt you that much and Parallel City with N can simply beat Mega Rayquaza on it’s own.
Yveltal/Mew should be a walk in the park, you resist them, and unlike most dark Pokemon, Yveltal doesn't resist psychic. Fairy Drop is an amazing tool in this matchup, sometimes turning two hit knock outs into three hit knock outs, while you have the potential to one hit knock out anything that doesn't carry a Fighting Fury Belt (which can sometimes even be turned off by their own Fright Night). Fright Night can be annoying to deal with when you need to Mega Evolve, but all the Hex Maniac, Lysandre and Escape Rope you have available should make it not too difficult to play around. It should be hard for them too keep enough energy in play to deal with your Mega Gardevoir, and if they try to charge up a bigger Yveltal EX be sure to Lysandre it up before it can get too big, even if you can't one hit knock it out. If they run Garbodor, you are a bit more susceptible to N, so make sure you prioritise setting up before Garbodor hits the field.
Very interesting matchup since you both have resistance and Giratina EX has weakness while being invincible at the same time due to it's ability. While Hex maniac exists, it means that Giratina EX is a save haven for energy to make Darkrai EX deal copious amounts of damage. You big fear in this matchup is that Darkrai EX simply gets too big for you to handle, which is why you should prioritse targeting Darkrai EX. I feel like the Darkrai/Giratina player will be tempted to play down Garbodor themselves into the late game, to make N stronger which means you do not actively have to worry about it very much. If they don't, simply use your resources to fish for Hex Maniac and have an easy knock out. An interesting play you can sometimes make is Link Blast on a Giratina EX which holds one Double Dragon Energy. Because you match the amount of energy and aren't a Mega Pokemon at that point, it's a pretty easy one hit knock out.
Rainbow Road is another hard matchup like Mega Rayquaza, although here you actually have a chance to just run through them and one hit knock out ever Xerneas you come into contact with. Slowing down their set up with Hex Maniac while taking quick knock outs is the way to go in this matchup, since once they get running properly there is little you can do but race them for prices. Comfortably, we're not too bad at that and actually stand a chance. Killing Volcanion EX quickly is another great play to limit their damage, without giving up your price race. To make this matchup better you can include Parallel City, as simply denying the option for a one hit knock out can sometimes be enough to swing the matchup.
This matchup will make you cry, there's literally nothing you can do except pray for a Trubbish + 6 energy hand (or comparably bad).
At the day of the tournament I decided to play the list I had prepared. My friend Tim van Heuven went in with the same deck, but with a Jolteon EX instead of the Fairy Drop. I think Jolteon EX is a really cool addition, which makes your Escape Rope plays better and you can run a lightning energy without it interfering with the rest of the deck, giving you an extra option (although Jolteon EX is hard to power up) for attacking.
Round 1 vs ??? with Mega Altaria
While you may think that facing a non meta deck is nice in the first round, Mega Altaria EX almost hard counters Mega Gardevoir. This is because it heals 30 every turn (including benched Pokemon) and has the option to play Fairy Drop as well. My opponent also didn't run any Shaymin EX, which meant there where no easy prizes. Luckily, he didn't run enough fairy garden to win the Stadium war, which meant that I could usually two hit knock out his Mega Altaria EX while retreatin around to keep him from doing to same. Luckily my opponent was a newer player and made some mistakes, which made me etch out the win.
Round 2 vs ??? with Greninja
Normally this matchup is pretty close, but I went first and my opponent missed his turn two Water Duplicates. This made me steamroll him without much resistance.
Round 3 vs Jo G. with Mega Mewtwo
Having a very bad start I was forced to Mega Evolve without a Gardevoir Spirit Link, but luckily she missed the Mega Turbo she needed to knock out this lone Mega Gardevoir EX. After missing this knock out, I was able to win quickly with just a single Mega Gardevoir EX.
Round 4 vs Steffen E. with Yveltal/Mew
This game starts horribly for me, I draw absolutely nothing and am unable to attack for about 4 or 5 turns. Strangely Steffen doesn't opt to capitalize on this and refuses to take a knock out with Umbreon EX's End Game. Eventually I get to attack and he refuses to take another knock out on my Shaymin EX with Pitch Black Spear, which makes me able to come back almost completely, only losing because I'm one energy short to retreat the Shaymin EX he randomly decided to lysandre, even though it didn't further his win condition. While being quite salty at the eventual outcome of the game, I was happy that I climbed back so far from such a horrendous start.
Round 5 vs ??? with Greninja
I went first again, and was able to play around most of his Bursting Balloons and Faded Town, eventually leaving him with just a Greninja Break. At this point he fails to draw recovery and is stuck with just Froakie on turn five. He doesn't take a single prize.
Round 6 vs Tobias S. with Volcanion
I get the best start of the whole tournament, I open with triple Gardevoir EX with Gardevoir Spirit Link on every single one of them and am able to Hex Maniac as well. Turn two I am able to Mega Evolve all three Gardevoir EX, attack and play Hex Maniac again. At this point he's forced to drop the Shaymin EX in his hand (which was his only draw) and he's not able to do much anymore. He scoops a couple turns later.
Round 7 vs ID
ID into top cut!
Top 8 vs Philip S. with Yveltal/Garbodor
Usually a good matchup, but I fail to get more than two Mega Gardevoir EX out in the first game, and fail to draw my last prizes. Game two I fair much better, quickly winning without much resistance. Game three I'm unable to draw my last two prizes because of Lysandre being in my last two prizes, and being unable to build a third Mega Gardevoir EX. Pretty sad about the way these games went, as I felt like I had great matchups in top cut, but that's the way she goes.
In the end I wasn't too happy with my performance, but I didn't feel like i could've done too much about it. Still, with the limited amount of events Europe gets the 55 CP are a welcome start of the season and this tournament provided some useful, high level testing for Liverpool Regionals, which is played in the same format. Despite Mega Gardevoir now losing it's surprise factor, I feel like it's a top contender in this format and should be respected at such.
For the deck itself, there are some changes to be made. Interestingly enough, Karen was pretty useless, and I often didn't want to commit to playing it because it helps your opponent if you already took some knock outs earlier. I would simply change this to a fourth Super Rod, and in line with this less "reckless" approach I would exclude Giovanni's in favor of another Sycamore, just to make us a bit stronger. I felt like my loss in top cut could partly be explained by a lack of consistency under Garbodor, which combined with N and Ace Trainer to lower hands can be very hard to deal with. The same holds true for Shadow Stitching from Greninja. The Fairy Drop was absolutely amazing and I've included a second one. I first dismissed Olympia for this deck because we have such an emphasis on Escape Rope already, but I feel like the heal combined with the ability to VS Seeker for a switch is amazing. This allows you to keep Hoopa EX on the bench more often, instead of having to needlessly discard it because you can't afford it to be Lysandre'd. Without Karen, it's important to manage your Pokemon resources in a bit more conservative way.
With the new set this deck gains two cards that make this deck substantially better, Dragonite EX and Rattata. Dragonite EX is essentially a Super Rod that puts the cards in your hand immediately and is searchable with Hoopa EX and Ultra Ball, as well as being able to add damage to Mega Gardevoir EX's attack. Rattata deals with Fighting Fury Belt, which is very annoying and often limits your ability to take on hit knock outs. You can even reuse it with Dragonite EX multiple times.
The list I would use isn't too far off from the current one, keeping most of the essentials that made it good and just adding the bonus stuff the new set gave us.
Effectively, we remove some Super Rod and Giovanni’s Sheme and add Dragonite EX and Rattata to get to the new list.
Probably the worst kept secret deck of this year, this deck was massive at Orlando Regionals.
Funnily enough my friend and teammate Benjamin Pham was the creator of this deck, actually playing the deck last year at a Regionals and making top 8 with it. Going into this format he immediately pointed out the renewed potential of the deck with the drop of popularity in Crobats and Special Charge, Town Map and Puzzle of Time all making the deck much better than when he played it (can you imagine the deck without these cards?). Out of respect for his idea I decided to keep it out of my earlier articles. Now that it's pretty much a widespread deck I feel fine to talk about it in this article.
- 4x Gyarados
- 2x Octillery
- 2x Remoraid
- 1x Meowstic EX
- 1x Mr. Mime
- 4x Magicarp
- 4x Professor Sycamore
- 2x N
- 2x Teammates
- 2x Lysandre
- 1x Pokemon Ranger
- 4x Team Magma's Secret Base
- 4x VS Seeker
- 4x Puzzle of Time
- 4x Trainer's Mail
- 4x Dive Ball
- 4x Buddy-Buddy Rescue
- 3x Float Stone
- 2x Ultra Ball
- 1x Town Map
- 1x Special Charge
- 4x Double Colorless Energy
I have to admit, the Meowstic EX was brilliant and we didn't include it in any earlier lists. The potential to heal a little bit of damage to get Gyarados out of some crucial knock out ranges as well as a little bit of extra damage to help with reaching the one hit knock out on 220 HP Pokemon is simply amazing.
Outside of that, we still have strong preference for Octillery, since it's so strong in recovering from late game N, which is otherwise hard to do. Since this deck needs to hit multiple cards every time a Gyarados goes down (which it does pretty easily), it's very important to have a stable source of draw at any point in the game. It also helps hitting Pokemon Ranger more often versus Giratina EX. The high amount of Float Stone this forces you to run isn't a hinderance at all in my opinion, and helps make Meowstic EX more consistent as well. Other than Octillery over Shaymin EX, there isn't a big difference in the list since most of the cards are "must run" cards for the most part. The goal of the deck is also pretty simple, just try to one hit knock out anything that comes into your way. Usually the prize trade should easily tip in your favor since you're using a non EX attacker that can deal with virtually any Pokemon in the current format in one hit. Gyarados' cool treat, Double, is barely useful, since we don't really have the tools in the format or the space in the deck to exploit it.
As you can imagine, this matchup is very lopsided, you hit for weakness so that you don't even need to get the full Magikarp force on your bench and can build multiple Gyarados at the same time. Just set up your Gyarados and don't bench too many EX Pokemon so they can never trade positively.
This matchup is quite bad for you, as they can easily deal with your benched Magikarps, and you don't get the advantage of trading favourably since they don't run EX Pokemon at all. This combined with their heavy emphasis on N and Ace Trainer + Shadow Stitching makes this matchup a near autoloss.
Usually a typical matchup where you can set up one hit knock outs pretty quickly, without much hinderance. Usually not attacking is better than barely knocking out a Mega Mewtwo EX, since Damage change will just give them an option to shift the prize trade back into their favor. Another card that has become more common in Mega Mewtwo decks is Hoopa, which is a nuisance because it can knock out two of your Magikarp and most of your damage with it. A way to deal with this is to take care of Garbodor so your Mr. Mime stops the damage. They usually only play one with little to no recovery, so it should also be fine to just not care too much about it and just try to win as quickly as possible.
Their speed can sometimes be a bit hard for you to manage, but you have a lot of counter Stadiums and you should usually win the prize exchange since you both take on hit knock outs, but you do so without an EX Pokemon. They also don't really focus on late game disruption, so you should be able to keep streaming Gyarados. If you're worried about this matchup you can choose to include Klefki, which you can recycle pretty easily in this deck.
This deck is basically built to punish Mega Pokemon and Pokemon EX in general, which you don't rely on. Fright Night Yveltal is basically irrelevant for you (as long as you don't mess up with Float Stone) and you easily one hit knock out anything in the deck. The bench damage they run can only be put on EX Pokemon, so your Magikarp are safe from it.
Any deck that included Giratina EX is very hard for you, especially when combined with Parallel City. Your game plan should usually be to deal with Giratina EX before anything else, but this is pretty hard to do so every time. Meowstic EX is amazing to make sure they have a hard time knocking out Gyarados with Giratina EX, which gives you some extra time. Playing double Enhanced Hammer probably swings this matchup in your favor, since you can even reuse them with Puzzle of Time. With the recent results of Orlando Regionals, it might be wise to make space for these.
If they play Galvantula and some way to turn off Mr.Mime this matchup is vhard, since they will be able to grab double prizes on your Magikarps pretty often. A saving grace in this case is that they don't really have a lot of hit points, so you don't always need to have multiple Magikarp in play to score one hit knock outs consistently. Also, Volcanion EX is an easy knock out for you with just a single Magikarp damaged.
Hard matchup, difficult to keep your stadium in play, difficult to one hit knock out and will just knock your Gyarados out every turn. You can also never charge a benched Gyarados since they can easily remove your Special Energy with their attack. This along with Garbodor for the late game makes this matchup very hard to win. Your aim here is to just win as fast as possible, as long drawn out games are simply too resource heavy for you.
Analysing SPIEL Special Event
The big winner of the tournament was Yveltal, with a first and second place finish. Since putting all the deck lists here would be crowded, I would like to link you to mudkipshore.eu to check out all the top 8 decks. I like Philip’s list the most, especially the Ace Trainer and EXP. Share. Those are very smart inclusions and make the deck feel stronger. Overall though, the tournament didn’t bring a lot of surprises. The Yveltal list that won was essentially the most basic list possible with 1-1 Garbodor splashed in, but proved to be very effective. The main thing I like about Yveltal is it’s consistency, which definitely pays off in a tournament with best of one Swiss.
Marcos played a very standard Energy Retrieval build of Volcanion, which I advocated for in the best of one Swiss environment we had to play in. His list is very close to the one I posted in my last article, with the notable difference being Acro Bike, which I personally don’t like. The other Volcanion EX was a lot more teched out, but didn’t have Sky Field. I think that’s a big mistake, Sky Field gives you the option to have more explosive turns and bench more Volcanion EX, the main damage source of your deck. Scorched Earth removes energy from your pool of Steam Up energy, which simply makes it inferior to no Stadium at all.
Mega Mewtwo without Garbodor really surprised me, I felt like some of the inconsistency that plagued Mega Mewtwo/Garbodor might have made these players opt for no Garbodor in this tournament, as again, consistency was essential to making it through Swiss. The lists are both very aggressive, opting for a high count of Mega Turbo and a 2/2 split of Shrine of Memories and Parallel City. I think this is absolutely correct and I love the Hoopa they both decided to play, as it is a cheap non EX attacker that can set up knock outs essentially free. It’s especially amazing in Mega Mewtwo mirror match and Gyarados, where you can snipe two Magikarp with it.
Perhaps the most original deck in the top 8 was Robin’s Giratina/Lugia/Garbodor deck. Robin is a great player and apparently refuses to play anything without Giratina EX and Crushing Hammer in it. The deck is very simple, essentially just Giratina EX as it’s main core, which is strong in a format filled with Mega Pokemon and Garbodor to deal with most non Mega decks like Greninja and Volcanion. The ability to lock in Parallel City combined with Garbodor’s Garbotoxin is simply amazing and curbs their damage output by a lot. I assume Lugia EX is mainly there to act as strong one energy attacker cleanup, and as a source of a late game finisher with its second attack. Magearna EX is there to prevent annoying effects like Jirachi’s Stardust or Froakie’s Bubble. It also prevents Mewtwo EX’s Damage Change, although this shouldn’t come up too often since you can lock them out of Shrine of Memories completely. I’m not sure how strong the hammers currently are, but they go well with the disruptive nature of the deck.
Notably absent from the tournament where Gyarados, Rainbow Road and Darkrai/Giratina, which did see a lot of play in Orlando. I think people here simply didn’t know or care too much about the Gyarados secret deck or didn’t want to play it in best of one due to it’s fragile nature. On the other hand, Greninja is definitely a worse play in a best of one format, so you could expect one of you worst matchups a lot less. Darkrai/Giratina missing from the field was weird, as I would consider it one of the stronger decks going into the weekend. Giratina EX has the ability to win games on it’s own (as demonstrated by Robin) and Darkrai EX provides you with a great all round heavy hitter. Perhaps people got signals that Yveltal was going to be a big deck, which is one of the deck’s bigger weaknesses in the current format. Or maybe people weren’t sure about the deck without Garbodor and considered it too inconsistent with Garbodor.
Rainbow Road got a lot of hype so I expected at least some people to pick it up, but I assume most people skipped it due to it’s issues with Parallel City and possibly consistency issues.
A big deck that didn’t make top cut was Greninja, which really surprised me. I consider it a questionable play when you have to go through best of one Swiss because of the consistency issues that come with the deck naturally. However, I can also see why it might appeal, since you would expect more Volcanion due to it’s advantage in best of one, where Greninja simply shines. It also has the ability to beat basically any deck or is a strong pick against Yveltal decks, unless they play Garbodor.
Looking Forward to Liverpool
With Regionals Liverpool being the next big event for European players, I would like to take a look at how the metagame will shape up after the new information after two big standard events.
With all the new information I would like to change the tier list I’ve added in earlier articles.
I expect there to be a lot of people that pick up either Darkrai/Giratina/Garbodor or Mega Gardevoir at the Regional Championship in Liverpool. This is because they where under the radar but aren’t necessarily decks that feel very “rogueish” and will be favourites for people to play. This shoves Mega Mewtwo into tier two, as the deck has bad matchups against both of those. The matchup between Darkrai/Giratina/Garbodor and Mega Gardevoir is very close, so this shouldn’t discourage people from playing either deck. Volcanion is still a strong play with good chance to beat both other tier one decks and it’s raw power will keep it popular, even with Gyarados on the rise. Gyarados is probably getting less popular after it had a massive showing at Orlando Regionals. This is because Darkrai/Giratina/Garbodor emerged as it’s counter at the same tournament, and being relatively easy to tech against with either Hoopa, Absol or Meowstic EX. There isn’t really any deck that specifically profits from this shift in the format, but maybe someone can come up with a strong contender in the new metagame. Funny enough, the Mega Altaria deck I faced in the first round could be strong against Darkrai/Giratina/Garbodor and has a strong Mega Gardevoir matchup as well. It shouldn’t be too bad against most other decks, except for maybe Volcanion.
With those final thoughts I would like to conclude this article and give a big shout out to my team Complexity Card Gaming for the support thus far. I hope to see all my European friends attend the Regional Championships in Liverpool and all my international friends at the first International Championship in London. For my next article I want to look into the top players of Europe, similar to Brit Pybas’ top 10 United States players in the past. I feel like the past event was a great showing for most of the top players in Europe and we will probably see most of them show up as top players at the next couple of events.
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