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Shiv Luthra

Checking the Toolbox

While everyone's off with their new Mega Gardevoir/Aromatisse decks or Aromatisse/Seismitoad decks, why don't we just take a look at the fun and versatile side of Aromatisse Toolbox.

04/16/2015 by Shiv Luthra

Hello everyone, my name is Shiv Luthra and this is my first article on 60cards. So before I get into the deck let me tell you a little (and my mean very little) about myself. I am a rookie player in the TCG and I haven’t played too much competitively. I have, however, looked into the competitive aspect of the game and I normally just play around with different decks and combinations. With that out of the way let’s get on with it!

Aromatisse's wafting scent has drawn us in

 

Introduction

When it was first released Aromatisse instantly took off. The ability to move energy around at free will was very powerful and having it on a Stage 1 unlike Hydreigon made it more playable. There weren't many cards to work in a straight fairy deck, the only ones being Xerneas EX and Mewtwo EX. Aromatisse still found its way into what is known as a toolbox deck, where you run a variety of different types and play based on countering your opponent. So if you’re playing a Yveltal deck you try to get your lightning pokemon out immediately and if you’re playing Plasma you would normally want a Pokemon with Safeguard out.

Aromatisse Toolboxes normally are very defensive due to the fact that the deck benefits from Max Potion by moving energy away, healing all damage, and moving the energy right back. Most Toolboxes use high HP Pokemon like Mega Kangaskhan along with cards to shut down certain cards, like Virizion-EX and Safeguard Pokemon. However, defense is no longer the best offense.

 

Why it fell

About halfway through the BCR-on rotation, Aromatisse decks were dominant. No one could OHKO Mega Kangaskhan without hitting for weakness and even then it was hard to knock out with Max Potions always getting in your way. The toolbox was also extremely potent along pure fairy decks. Using a variety of attackers like Landorus-EX, Yveltal-EX, and Mewtwo-EX was extremely fun and powerful. Even better was that Enhanced Hammer wasn't around to get rid of your Rainbow Energy. Then, Phantom Forces happened.

At face value, Aromatisse actually gained a few friends in this new expansion. Malamar-EX was great for Hyper Hypnosis, put your opponent to sleep, and move that energy to your attacker. It also spawned Aegislash-EX which could block attackers with special energy to make the Toolbox even more disruptive. But the counters were too much.

First off, the dreaded Enhanced Hammer came back for another round. This immediately dropped the power of Toolbox. Your Rainbow Energies were as good as gone and having them around for more than just two attacks was definitely a challenge. Adding to its woes, VS Seeker came back after being absent for quite some time. This means recycling Lysandre to take out your Aromatisse and any other beat-up EX for that matter. Also, Metal was back and badder than ever. Bronzong just gave so much power to Metal decks that could hit fairies for weakness. While you may not think weakness has much to do in a Toolbox deck, remember VS Seeker for Lysandre. Speaking of Lysandre, Lysandre's Trump Card made Seismitoad a lot more potent as it could recycle hammers, lasers, Flare Tools, etc.

After a round of Regionals, Aromatisse immediately descended from Tier 1 to Tier 3.

 

Making the Fixes

With today's current meta with Bats, Toads, and just generally fast decks there definitely are adjustments to be made to Aromatisse. Some players just rode the train and took Aromatisse into Seismitoad decks making them even more annoying while some just shifted to straight fairy. However, the variety and enjoyment that comes from Toolbox decks are too good to just abandon. Here is the deck I have come up with:

Pokemon Choices:

3-3 Aromatisse

I'm very uncomfortable with a 3-2 line as if one is prized and if that one gets easily KO'd by say Landorus or Bats you're as good as gone.

1 Xerneas

Xerneas is just very good for setup and a non-EX attacker that can take out Safeguard Pokemon. I only run 1 because Rainbow Energies normally have priority over Fairy.

1 Virizion-EX

A lot of Seismitoad decks (based on what I've seen) are starting to drop Head Ringers so more power to Virizion who hits for weakness and has resistance. Also just good to block unnecessary special conditions against Seismitoad, Exeggutor, or Yveltal

1 Trevenant-EX

While the grass type is covered with Virizion, Trevenant can be a good option. Two Rainbow energies and you knock out Seismitoad, three rainbow energies (unlikely) and you knock out Primal Groudon/Kyogre. Dark Forest can also be good to stall after Lysandre'ing a Jirachi or Slurpuff.

1 Mr Mime

Landorus-EX is running rampant especially in LandoBats in which you already have a bad matchup so blocking bench damage will always help prolong the life of your Spritzee and Aromatisse. I'm actually not sure about using this over another attacker because lots of LandoBats are playing Silent Lab anyway.

1 Yveltal-EX

Just a solid attacker that can hit for a lot of damage in the right situation. If you would rather go for Mewtwo-EX because dark-weak Pokemon tend to not show up anyway, then go ahead but I think the extra damage is worth it.

2-1 M Manectric EX

Now we get to the good stuff. One of the biggest problems by far with Aromatisse decks is that they have no way to recover energy. Mega Manectric can solve this problem while also having a nice attack to clean up Lightning Weak Pokemon. True you can only pull out Fairy Energy but it's still worth it.

1-1 Whiscash

With the current metagame I feel cards like these are perfect. Any card that prevents your opponent from using a certain attack can be pretty good against a deck that doesn't play Keldeo-EX. With Amnesia, you can stop Quaking Punches and yes you need all the Seismitaod precautions you can. You can also stop Blockade from those nasty eggs that have been popping up. Lastly, flipping heads on Rising Lunge, knockouts Landorus-EX.

 

1 Cobalion

While I’m still on the fence between Cobalion or Aegislash, I found that Cobalion was extremely good in prize trade against straight Fairy decks. Energy Press was a nice attack that would normally 2 hit KO any Fairy EX while only giving up one prize. Iron Breaker can be a nice situational attack as well

The only other thing I would like to touch on aside from the Pokemon is the tool line up:

2 Hard Charm 1 Exp. Share and 1 Muscle Band

I definitely think Hard Charm is better than Muscle Band because Muscle Band doesn’t help you go from 2-hit-KOs to OHKOs except Yveltal-EX. Hard Charm is nice to reduce damage from Seismitoad, Landorus, and Donphan while Exp. Share helps you keep energy on board. Put it on an Yveltal-EX and it should be ready to go after two attackers go down.

Matchups

Seismitoad-EX Slightly Favorable to Slightly Unfavorable

Seismitoad will always be a problem for this deck however with three ways to counter it (Virizion, Trevenant, Whiscash) so as long as you play tools before the Head Ringers come out you’re usually fine with Hard Charm and Max Potion. The Slurpuff matchup can easily go downhill with a few hammer flips but it is still the most favorable variant. The Garbodor and Crobat variants are almost always bad because Garbodor shuts of Virizion and Aromatisse while Bats will just snipe your bench. I haven’t tested much against Jynx or Manectric-EX variants but they don’t seem to slide either way too much.

LandoBats Highly Unfavorable

Whiscash is the only Pokemon to hit Landorus for weakness and while I have been able to hit OHKOs with Rising Lunge, the spread damage is just too much for this deck. Aromatisse and Spritzee will quickly fall and M Manectric is weak to fighting. It’s not unwinnable, but it definitely isn’t pretty. A time you will win is if you can snipe a couple Zubat with Manectric before you get KO’d by Landorus.

Night March and Flareon Slightly Unfavorable

I’m putting this as one because they’re each speed decks with non-EXs. This matchup mainly depends on who sets up first and about 6 out of 10 times it will be your opponent. I honestly expected that to be higher in testing but I guess not. Trump Card can ocassionally save you from a rough start but not always. These matchups would be better if you choose Mega Kangaskhan because it is almost impossible for them to OHKO and you can setup easier without Rainbows.

Yveltal-EX Favorable

This is a nice match for Toolbox especially the ones with Manectric-EX. If you start with it, you can apply lots of early pressure with Overrun and Assualt Laser if they dare attach a tool. Xerneas and Aromatisse each resist dark making them hard to OHKO early. Whiscash can also come in huge if your opponent plays Garbodor to prevent any free retreating with Darkrai-EX.

Bronzong and Metal Unfavorable to Even

While you do have weakness, you’re opponent still has to setup. I found the split on who sets up first is 50-50, normally going your way if you start with Manectric-EX and place a lot of pressure with Overrun. While my list doesn’t have a fire type, this deck can still perform well with some Hard Charm shenanigans.

Primal Kyogre Even

Again another deck that needs to set up. Trevenant-EX is normally my go to guy to hit Keldeo with Dark Forest since two Keldeos for your opponent is definitely not good for them. You also gain an edge since you can Max Potion any damage to prevent ridiculous four-prize-turns that Primal Kyogre thrives on.  

Conclusion

While toolbox decks will definitely not live up to their former stature, there definitely is some life in it. And that’s what’s so nice about it, you have a lot of freedom to just mess around play different Pokemon and maybe add more if one matchup really isn’t going your way. While more aggressive Aromatisse decks like Mega Gardevoir will likely take center-stage, Toolbox decks have always been fun and great if you’re just a passive and defensive player. Speaking of which maybe you could just make the toolbox more aggressive, it’s all up to you!

Hope you guys enjoyed my first article.

 

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