Experts' corner

user
Jimmy Pendarvis

The Team Up! Dictionary

Jimmy review's Team Up and updates old decks

02/08/2019 by Jimmy Pendarvis

Introduction 

Hello everyone! My name is Jimmy Pendarvis, and I am now a writer for 60 Cards! It is exciting to write my first article for the month, and I am glad I get to do it at such an exciting point in Pokemon, the release of a new set. Team Up is finally here, almost tournament legal, and everyone in the community is getting prepared. Trying out new tricks in already established decks is what I prefer to start with, but I am sure many players are trying out all the new archetypes and all they have to offer. Well never fear, no matter which category you fall into, I have something for you here today! Welcome to my extensive review and analysis of Team Up. I will start off with a look at the new hyped cards, and give my general opinion of each card. I have 27 cards to talk about today, varying in quality, and these are ones that I see people talking about, so expect to see them in the near future! After I wrap that up, I will talk about decks that established themselves as tier one in the last meta, and how I expect Team Up to effect them. Strap in and get ready, it is time to get started.

Team Up - The Cards

Here is a quick link to all of the cards talked about. Feel free to directly check these out or read the whole article as per normal.

Beedrill

Shaymin PRISM STAR

Ninetales

Articuno

Pikachu & Zekrom-GX, Zapdos, Tapu Koko PRISM STAR

Electrode

Ampharos-GX

Emolga

Gengar & Mimikyu-GX 

Mr. Mime

Omastar, Kabutops

Alolan Muk

Jirachi

Doublade

Alolan Ninetales, Mimikyu

Pidgeotto

Persian

Black Market PRISM STAR

Bill's Analysis

Electrocharger

Erika's Hospitality

Ingo & Emmet

Lavender Town

Pokemon Communication 

Viridian Forest 

Wonderous Labyrinth PRISM STAR

Beedrill

Yes I am sure some of you don't agree with me, but I think Beedrill (TM; 5)  has the potential to make an appearance at upcoming tournaments. I imagine it being played with Zoroark GX (SLG; 77) , the best partner in the recent history of Pokemon, because it not only acts as draw power, but also another attacking option. I imagine the deck being built like Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Gardevoir GX (BUS; 93)  was, in the sense that the Beedrill (TM; 5)  line is important, but the deck does not appear to be built around Beedrill (TM; 5) . Beedrill (TM; 5)  provides something that  Zoroark GX (SLG; 77) does not have, a great way to OHKO things, and a solid single prize attacker.

Shaymin PRISM STAR

This card is very deck specific, in the sense that it can only go in decks that play Grass Energy (GRI; 167)  and flood the board with them. While this is not an impossible qualification, as  Rayquaza GX (CLS; 177) is a deck that does this, it is a very niche use, so it will be an unpopular tech in the grand scheme of things. I could see it being played in Rayquaza GX (CLS; 177) , but I am not super confident in how strong the card will be. This is something that I could see being solid in the future, if it ever has a deck that it fits well in.

Ninetales

Ninetales (TM; 16)  can only be played in fire decks, good thing  Blacephalon GX (LT; 219) is one of the best decks in the meta right now! I could see Ninetales (TM; 16)  being played in Blacephalon GX (LT; 219) , and it is something I plan to try. Not only does it allow you to have a gust effect for the turn without playing a supporter, but it gets energy in the discard pile for Naganadel (LT; 108) . Seems great, right? Well the argument against it is that Blacephalon GX (LT; 219) should just focus on being as consistent and straight forward as possible. Looks like I will have to try this to make form my final opinion.

Articuno

This card is a solid single prize attacking option, and its ability is absolutely absurd. You get to setup a KO, move your energy to the bench, where it is protected because of the ability. I expect this card to be extremely good in water based decks, such as Quagsire (DM; 26) .

Pikachu & Zekrom-GX, Zapdos, Tapu Koko PRISM STAR

I lumped all these cards together because I think that all three of them will be played together in a Lightning box of sorts.  Zapdos (TM; 40) allows for early pressure for just one energy, so you can lead with Zapdos (TM; 40) until you can get enough energy on the board to attack with other things. This will likely be Pikachu & Zekrom GX (TM; 184) , a solid attacker that really punishes opposing Tapu Lele GX (GRI; 155) . It feels really difficult to lose a game that the opponent benched a Tapu Lele GX (GRI; 155) in because of Tag Bolt-GX allowing for an easy four prize turn. This is a scary thought given the popularity of Tapu Lele GX (GRI; 155) , which makes me curious in how decks will adapt to deal with this situation.

Electrode

I am on the fence about this card. Cards like this have never been very good in the past, but I am thinking  Ditto Prism Star (LT; 154) actually makes enough of a difference to get it over the hump. I could see the inclusion of a small  Electrode (TM; 39) package in the Lightning box deck, just so that the Tag Bolt-GX is easier to pull off. If the opponent takes the time to target down  Ditto Prism Star (LT; 154) and KO it, then you bought yourself a turn of freedom in all other aspects of your board, so that does not seem too devastating. What worries me about this card is how situational it is, but it might be needed to help close out games.

Ampharos-GX

I think Ampharos GX (TM; 43)  is simply outclassed by the other Lightning Pokemon that are now available to the playerbase, so unfortunately I am an Ampharos GX (TM; 43)  hater. This card would have potential if it was not weak to Fighting, but unfortunately it is, so I think that better options exist out there.

Emolga

This card has not gotten enough love for how good it is in Lost March! While it does take a specific deck to be included in, Emolga (TM; 46) improves consistency for said deck a ton. Lost March has gotten a lot better with the release of this, making the use of  Lost Blender (LT; 233) and  Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) an ease.

Gengar & Mimikyu-GX

This card is incredible, it is the card I am the most excited for in the entire set. Gengar (CIN; 38)  is my favorite Pokemon, so I am a little biased, but I think that  Gengar & Mimikyu GX (TM; 186) is playable in a few different manners. For starters, we have the obvious, an additional attacking option in Psychic decks. I think Poltergeist is a great threat to have, it will keep the opponent thinking about it, and can take a huge KO in the middle of the game if they aren't careful. On the other side of things, we have the darker, scarier option. Putting  Gengar & Mimikyu GX (TM; 186) in the infamous  Zoroark GX (SLG; 77) control deck, in both standard and expanded. Horror House-GX is a sick name I know, but it is also an incredible defensive tool. No matter what your opponent is doing, the use of a  Pokemon Catcher (DE; 111) or Guzma (BUS; 143) in combination with the attack makes it so that the opponent will simply have to pass their next turn. Even if they just need to attach one energy to retreat, or have Guzma (BUS; 143) in hand, it does not matter, they just have to pass their turn. That is huge in a lot of situations, and buys the defensive decks a ton of time to prepare for future difficulties. I expect to see people complaining about this card eventually.

Mr. Mime

This card is a super situational tech, I don't think any deck in the current format wants to include this card. Not a lot of decks play Acerola (BUS; 112) , and  Acerola (BUS; 112) just isn't punishing a deck in the current meta super hard right now. I expect this card to be a flop for the near future, and think it is unlikely for it to see play in the future. I say this confidently, but I was super on the fence about this card at first.

Omastar, Kabutops

These cards would have been problematic when used with Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick (PRC; 158) , but now that thats banned, I think that they have suffered quite a hit. Expanded has too many answers to a slow lock built by  Omastar (TM; 76) and/or Kabutops (TM; 78) , but I could see Kabutops (TM; 78)  being good in the standard format.  Kabutops (TM; 78) actually has decent HP and a solid attack on top of its strong ability. I plan to toy around with Kabutops (TM; 78) a lot in standard, and I hope I am successful. My first attempt of Alolan Ninetales GX (LT; 132) / Meganium (LT; 8) / Swampert (CLS; 35)  / Greninja GX (FLI; 24)  / Kabutops (TM; 78)  did not go very well. The deck is similar to what has been played in the past in terms of a stage two box, so it had similar problems. The deck just had too much going on, so it made the early turns complicated and awkward. More importantly, finding the one energy card the deck played, Super Boost Energy Prism Star (UPR; 136) , was like hitting a needle in a haystack.

Alolan Muk

While I think this card is really cool and has a few different uses, I think it is simply too gimmicky to translate into a viable concept. I expect players to try stuff like Alolan Muk (TM; 84)  / Garbodor (GRI; 51)  and  Alolan Muk (TM; 84) with deck out options. I don't think either idea is terrible, but I think that better decks exist for sure.

Jirachi

This card is one of the most hyped cards in the set! I think it works really well with trainer based decks that do or can run  Escape Board (UPR; 122) I plan to try this in  Malamar (FLI; 51) first, as I think the ever consistent  Malamar (FLI; 51) would love to be even faster. Jirachi (TM; 99) is a great starter for decks that run  Escape Board (UPR; 122) because it can easily be moved out of the way for an attack shortly after being used. Additionally,  Jirachi (TM; 99) can be used every time you use Guzma (BUS; 143) , and every time the opponent takes a knockout, so it generates value in a few different situations that are bound to happen in most games. Jirachi (TM; 99) has the potential to be one of the most impactful cards to come out of Team Up.

Doublade

I have never really been a fan of Tool Drop, and this is no exception. I expect this card to be tried in the early stages of the format, but I expect it to be not worthy of tournament play. The format right now is already filled with awesome options for single prize attacking decks. Ones that are more consistent than tool drop, have more HP than Doublade (TM; 108) , and are better overall options against opposing threats. I expect  Doublade (TM; 108) to be slower than people expect, struggle to hit numbers early, and have major inconsistency issues in comparison to the other options.

Alolan Ninetales, Mimikyu

I lumped these two together because they are both fairy reprints of cards used in the past, so I am going to say the similar things about them. Fairy type is a great type to be right now, so it certainly doesn't hurt these cards to receive a type change.  Alolan Ninetales (BUS; 28) was expected to be a strong tech when it was first printed as a Water Pokemon. The issue for it, though, was that water decks just were not very good at the time. Additionally, it was not as easy to include in decks as it is now, that is because Alolan Ninetales GX (LT; 225) did not exist at the very start, and even when it did, the  Alolan Ninetales (BUS; 28) does not exactly work will with it. Now that a fairy  Alolan Ninetales (TM; 111) exists, I am certain  Gardevoir GX (BUS; 159) will include at least one copy of it. As for Mimikyu (TM; 112) , it was actually played quite a bit as a Psychic Pokemon in decks that could use it. It is a solid single prize attacking option, and its low energy cost makes it efficient. I expect Gardevoir GX (BUS; 159) to be running a Mimikyu (TM; 112) if the meta calls for it, so I guess only time will tell.

Pidgeotto

I see people calling this the same as Trade Off, and using that as reasoning as for why this card is good. While it does read the same as Trade Off, it is really not the same. Uxie Lv.X was a card that was powerful during it's time, Trade Off today is not nearly the same as what it was back then. I think people are overrating this card because it is new, and I expect this card to not be played past the early stages of the new format. The format just has too may support Pokemon to choose from already, to the point where  Pidgeotto (TM; 123) just isn't a good enough option. It does have some major playability with Ingo & Emmet (TM; 144) , but so does  Magcargo (CLS; 24) and other utility Pokemon, so I am confident in my decision.

Persian

This is another card that I think is overrated in standard. The games in standard just end so quick, with minimal comeback potential. Unless the opponent builds their hand to an absurd size and does not play around  Persian (TM; 126) whatsoever, you most likely won't get enough value out of it to justify giving up a free prize and not taking a KO in most cases. The  Persian (TM; 126) does seem like a great anti control card, especially in expanded, and I could also see it being used as a tool in control decks. Anything else though, I am not confident in. I expect this card to be a deck specific tech at best.

Black Market PRISM STAR

This is a very deck specific card, but it is good in the deck that it functions in. No doubt about it. Any deck that is based around Dark Pokemon and Darkness Energy (XY; 138)  should be playing this card every single time. It is an incredible stadium card that can allow for some pretty crazy things to happen, especially against decks that don't play counter stadiums.

Bill's Analysis

This supporter has potential as a tech supporter in slower decks, especially ones that play Alolan Ninetales GX (LT; 225) . Sometimes you can use  Alolan Ninetales GX (LT; 225) to grab two trainers, but have an awkward hand that does not allow you to do everything you wanted to. With Bill's Analysis (TM; 133) , you can go grab two trainers, see what you need afterwards, and then use  Alolan Ninetales GX (LT; 225) to go grab the remaining pieces. The card does seem somewhat situational, but decks are packed with trainers nowadays, so the options are kinda endless. I plan to try this card out as soon as possible.

Electrocharger

Any deck that plays Electropower (LT; 232)  should be playing some of these to get even more extra damage. Unfortunately Electropower (LT; 232) has not really been played yet, so it is up to the new trio of Lightning Pokemon to make it shine. I expect  Electropower (LT; 232) and Electrocharger (TM; 139) to be played in the Lightning Box deck, but we will see how things turn out!

Erika's Hospitality

A lot of people are hyped on this card, but I don't think it will end up being played. We already have decent amount of draw options in the standard format, especially with the introduction of Ingo & Emmet (TM; 144)Erika's Hospitality (TM; 174) biggest flaw is that you can't play it going first basically, and it will draw you a low number of cards in the early game in most situations. Additionally, it is a supporter that some decks can play around by keeping a low bench. Overall, I do not think including this card is worth the risk. If it does see play, I think that means the meta ended up being ideal for it, meaning only decks with big benches. On top of that, I expect it to be played in low counts if it ever does turn up in decklists.

Ingo & Emmet

Unlike Erika's Hospitality (TM; 140) , another hyped supporter I talked about today, I expect Ingo & Emmet (TM; 176)  to be played in the standard format. Sightseer (LT; 189)  was previously debated as a good supporter in some decks, and this is infinitely better than Sightseer (LT; 189) . In Blacephalon GX (SM8) (JP; null)  and Malamar (FLI; 51)  decks, discarding energy is something the deck aims to accomplish, and Ingo & Emmet (TM; 176)  will help with that while also drawing cards. In other decks, discarding is generally viewed as a bad thing, but using Ingo to thin bad stuff our of your deck should also be a common occurrence, so I feel like it is hit or miss in that regard. I am confident Ingo & Emmet (TM; 144) will see play in certain decks, and in low counts in general in standard, but I could see it taking off even mire than that.

Lavender Town

I expect this to be a great tool for control decks because it will allow them to play around the opponent's options easily, and make for easy choices when it comes to  Team Skull Grunt (SUM; 133) and other situational cards that usually take some detective work. It will be hard to justify this in expanded due to the high quality Stadium cards available there. However, I think Lavender Town (TM; 147) has potential to be included in certain standard control decks.

Pokemon Communication

Even though it is a reprint, this is one of my favorite cards to come out of Team Up! Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) is welcome back with open arms. It won't be played in every deck, and all decks that do play it might not play four, but I expect  Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) to be played in multiple decks.  Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) has increased consistency of the standard format for sure, and I think everyone can agree that is a huge plus. This card will definitely see play in Lost March, and other high Pokemon count decks, such as  Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) or  Gardevoir GX (BUS; 159) .

Viridian Forest

This card is cool because it bring some validity to decks that play multiple energy types, such as Ultra Necrozma GX (FLI; 95)  / Malamar (FLI; 51) , which plays Metal Energy (XY; 139)  and Psychic Energy (XY; 136)Viridian Forest (TM; 156) offers a huge consistency boost when it comes to finding the energy you need, whether it be a Metal Energy (XY; 139)  to attach or a Psychic Energy (XY; 136)  to discard. Ultra Necrozma GX (FLI; 95)  is the only deck I can think of that I expect to play this card, but  Viridian Forest (TM; 156) has potential for future use too.

Wondrous Labyrinth PRISM STAR

This is an auto include in  Sylveon GX (GRI; 158) and mill decks that don't plan on attacking anyways. Additionally, I could see this being played in Zoroark GX (SLG; 77) control because a  Double Colorless Energy (ND; 92) on  Oranguru (UPR; 114) is usually what happens anyways, so  Wondrous Labyrinth Prism Star (TM; 158) won't stop it from being able to Resource Management. So yes, I think this card is very good, and I expect control players to be all over this. Surprise, this card is also good in Granbull (LT; 138) ! Wondrous Labyrinth Prism Star (TM; 158)  can allow you to get ahead in the prize trade if the opponent does not have an immediate answer, some decks don't even play an answer period. Once you get ahead in these single prize matchups, you can usually carry it to a victory, so that is an incredibly important tool to possess.

An Update On Decks

Here is a quick link to all of the decks talked about. Feel free to directly check these out or read the whole article as per normal.

Blacephalon-GX / Naganadel

Lost March

Granbull

Zoroark-GX / Lycanroc-GX

Zoroark-GX / Decidueye-GX / Alolan Ninetales-GX

Malamar

Buzzwole / Lycanroc-GX

Blacephalon-GX / Naganadel

One of the most popular decks before the release of Team Up! Previously, the main issue for Blacephalon GX (LT; 52)  decks was the presence of efficient single prize attackers running around. Decks like Granbull (LT; 138) , Lost March, and Malamar (FLI; 51)  usually give Blacephalon GX (LT; 52)  a lot of trouble! You are essentially just trading knockouts back and forth, but you give up two prizes for one in each trade. The way to beat these kind of decks is early pressure. This can be done by using Marshadow (SLG; 45)  Let Loose in conjunction with quick and easy prize cards, through the use of Mind Blown and Burst GX. This speed can give Blacephalon GX (LT; 52)  quite a lead, allowing it to close the game with just a few more attacks, sometimes involving the use of Naganadel (LT; 108) as its own single prize attacker. On the other side of things, the deck was very strong against opposing GX decks.  Marshadow (SLG; 45) puts in work as always, and the speed of Blacephalon GX (LT; 52)  usually allows it to get ahead in the early game and close things out from there. While the new set does offer a lot in terms of versatility, none of this really changes for Blacephalon GX (LT; 52) . I would say that the deck is simply very polarizing in that manner, and that new decks will just be lumped into the aforementioned categories. In terms of new decks, I don't really expect a huge increase in single prize attackers, but I do see Pokemon like Zapdos (TM; 40)  getting added into the mix for sure. I don't think the new set brings much to the table for Blacephalon GX (LT; 52) , outside of a  Ninetales (TM; 16) perhaps. This would probably mean the inclusion of  Ditto Prism Star (LT; 154) in the deck, opening the door for other techs, such as Alolan Muk (SUM; 58) .

Lost March

Lost March! I have not been a fan of this deck in the past, but it is undeniably a solid deck, and I think it gained quite a bit with the introduction of Team Up! Pokemon Communication (TM; 152)  and  Emolga (TM; 46) have increased the consistency of the deck quite a bit, and I expect them to be popular inclusions in the deck moving forward. Emolga (TM; 46)  allows you to search your deck for an  Emolga (TM; 46) once per turn, which allows you to grab useless Pokemon out of your deck for the use of  Lost Blender (LT; 233) or Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) . Additionally, playing four  Emolga (TM; 46) increases your chance of having a good starter substantially. You won't be attacking with this powerhouse, but it does have free retreat, allowing you to attack with  Natu (LT; 87) right away!  Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) has great synergy with the deck due to the high Pokemon count and the need for  Jumpluff (LT; 14) to remain in the deck. As for the issues Lost March faces before, I think the biggest two were consistency issues and a poor Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) matchup. For starters, I think that the consistency has been improved substantially in the updated list. The inclusions of Pokemon Communication and  Emolga (TM; 46) have been working wonders in this regard, so I would say that the days of inconsistent Lost March are close to over. As for Decidueye GX (SUM; 12) , I think that this problem actually goes hand in hand with the deck's previous consistency issues. The previous list could just not do enough damage, fast enough, in a consistent manner. This resulted in the deck usually taking four prizes, but falling short due to the suppression of Feather Arrow. However, I think this matchup is now improved! Lost March is just a better deck now, flat out, and I think that its improved speed will improve its matchups, Decidueye GX (SUM; 12)  included. I don't think anything to come out of Team Up is particularly worrisome, but I do imagine a well timed Wondrous Labyrinth Prism Star (TM; 158)  would be pretty good against this deck!

Granbull

My favorite deck of the standard format before the arrival of Team Up! I love this deck, it is an absolute blast to play, and had pretty solid matchups across the board. Whenever I played this deck, I was pretty much only scared of Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  with an  Alolan Muk (SUM; 58) tech. The issue with that matchup is how easy it is for them to KO  Magcargo (CLS; 24) and/or Zebstrika (LT; 82) , while shutting off  Oranguru (SUM; 113) with their Alolan Muk (SUM; 58) . This does remove any pressure from your main attacker, Granbull (LT; 138) , but it makes it incredibly hard to repeatedly get down to zero cards in hand while also doing everything you need to do. You might be able to get away with having limited options for a turn or two, but after that it will get pretty rough. Your best chance of winning this matchup is to KO their Alolan Muk (SUM; 58) right away, through the use of Guzma (BUS; 115)  or Pokemon Catcher (DE; 111) . This can be acheived a little easier than most people think, especially when going first. I tend to use a smooth over preemptively to ensure this crucial KO on the following turn. As for the new set, I don't think anything is particurly scary for it. The set does offer some additional options for control decks, which are very good against Granbull (LT; 138) , but I don't think control decks are very good in the standard format right now. Even with all the new tricks available to the archetype, I just don't feel like those decks end up with enough control over the game.  Granbull (LT; 138) should prove to be pretty good against the new GX based decks, even with their increased HP. It is just too efficient when it comes to trading knockouts.  Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) will likely find its way into this deck for even further consistency, as it also functions as a way to help get your hand to zero. I could see the inclusion of  Wondrous Labyrinth Prism Star (TM; 158) being a solid one in the right meta, as decks like Lost March simply don't have a good way of dealing with it, which will make it hard for them to repeatedly attack.

Zoroark-GX / Lycanroc-GX

Zoroark GX (SLG; 53) / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  never fails to fall out of the meta! This deck is always being played at tournaments, but just varies in strength based on the meta around it. The only time I ever considered the deck unplayable was back when Buzzwole / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  was incredibly popular and absolutely dominant. Good news for  Zoroark GX (SLG; 53) / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  fans, times have changed! A lot of the new decks feel like they will really struggle against Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74) . In some cases this is due to weakness, which is the main issue for  Pikachu & Zekrom GX (TM; 184) at this point in time. In other cases, decks just can't keep up with the aggression that Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  provides, making it so that an opposing bench Pokemon is never safe, even in the early game. As for other well established decks,  Zoroark GX (SLG; 53) / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  has a lot of really close matchups, and can swing certain ones with tech cards.  Pikachu & Zekrom GX (TM; 184) feels like a staple at this point, as it makes  Granbull (LT; 138) a very positive matchup, while also improving the Lost March matchup. The Lost March matchup really comes down to how fast they are, and Alolan Muk (SUM; 58)  can really help to slow them down, but it is certainly not a cake walk still. On the other end of the spectrum, we have the GX based decks, such as Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Decidueye GX (SUM; 12)  and Blacephalon GX (LT; 52) . The one thing that everyone should know by now, is that if Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  is really strong against you, and goes unanswered, it is pretty much an immediate loss. In the Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) matchup,  Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) is only ever going to be pressured by Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) , meaning that if you just Dangerous Rogue-GX the Decidueye GX (SUM; 12)  that has energy on it, they usually won't have a great response to Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) on their next turn. This allows you to just take over the game by taking another two prizes with Claw Slash. Additionally, Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74) is usually the much faster deck, and it can apply a ton of pressure, so it usually gets a decent lead on the early game. It is just a lot easier for Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74) to take six prizes in the matchup. As for Blacephalon GX (LT; 52) , the tables have really turned.  Blacephalon GX (LT; 219) is actually pretty strong against Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  because it can take knockouts without needing a huge combo, unlike Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74) . The only way for a Zoroark GX (SLG; 77) to OHKO a Blacephalon GX (LT; 219) is by having a full bench, a Choice Band (GRI; 121)  attached, a Devoured Field (CIN; 93)  in play, and a Professor Kukui (SUM; 128)  as the supporter for the turn. While this is not a super hard play to pull off, it only accounts for two prizes, leaving the  Zoroark GX (SLG; 53) / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  player struggling to keep up with the consistent OHKOs that draws Blacephalon GX (LT; 52)  two prizes every time. Enough about matchups, lets move on to what inclusions Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  might make. I could see Pokemon Communication (TM; 152)  being really good in this deck, potentially replacing Timer Ball (SUM; 134) ! I would really love to see Pokemon Communication (TM; 152)  be the correct choice, as I hate flipping coins, I am sure most players do!

Zoroark-GX / Decidueye-GX / Alolan Ninetales-GX

This deck seemed to become progressively less popular over the course of the format, that was certianly the case in my local meta at least. This is the deck of the format that felt like it had a bunch of really close matchups, with the exception of one deck, Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74) . That matchup is quite bad, and it seems little can be done to truly improve it. This matchup might be the cause of the decreasing popularity of our bird friend, as Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  did seem to be increasing in populrity throughout the course of standard events. As for Team Up, I think the deck gains a few options for inclusions and gains a couple positive matchups, so things are looking up for  Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) players.  Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) could be a great inclusion in the deck, one to increase consistency and improve the speed of the deck. While I think Pokemon Communication (TM; 196) will replace Timer Ball (SUM; 134) in certain decks such as Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  / Lycanroc GX (GRI; 74)  , I do not think that should be the case with stage two decks. These stage two decks operate a little bit differently in the early game, and I think having the option of Timer Ball (SUM; 134) around is too good to pass up.  Bill's Analysis (TM; 133) is a card I plan to try out in slower decks like this one, stage twos might really benefit from consistent trainer search on top of Alolan Ninetales GX (LT; 132) , I just need to figure out how good the average  Bill's Analysis (TM; 133) actually is. As for matchups, I think that  Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) will be able to hold its own in pretty much all of them. The more gimmicky decks,  Beedrill (TM; 5)   and Doublade (TM; 108) , seem like they will not be able to handle Feather Arrow very well, making drawing prize cards and preventing attacks seemingly easy. For the more hyped ones, "Lightning Box" should be a pretty close one. Like I talked about earlier in the article, I expect Pikachu & Zekrom GX (TM; 184) to be played with other powerful lightning Pokemon. This deck will be fast, but Zoroark GX (SLG; 53)  should be able to do a decent job of dealing with  Zapdos (TM; 40) quickly, and it can start to setup KOs later in the game with Decidueye GX (SUM; 12) . It should be interesting to see how well  Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) can deal with the pressure!

Malamar

I think Malamar (FLI; 51) is getting really overlooked right now, the deck has a ton of potential. It gains a huge consistency boost in Jirachi (TM; 99) , and another solid tech option in Gengar & Mimikyu GX (TM; 186) , a nice finisher in certain matchups.  Malamar (FLI; 51) didn't have any terrible matchups against the more peopular decks before the release of Team Up, but it did have a lot of close matchups and a slightly unfavored  Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) matchup. While I don't think these are all going to magically become autowins, I think the increased strength and consistency of this deck will allow it to gain an edge on the closer matchups, and even bring the  Decidueye GX (GRI; 146) matchup to an even closer battle. This sounds great and all, but doesn't explain why I think the deck is so well positioned! That is because of it's strength against the new cards, sporting  Marshadow GX (BUS; 156) to deal with the pesky new Lightning Pokemon, and its ease of adaptability. I mean two things by that.  Malamar (FLI; 51) is generally a deck that has room for techs without sacrificing its insane consistency, which makes it easy to prepare for any given tournament if you have a read on the meta. Additionally,  Malamar (FLI; 51) has a ton of different attacking options, so you should have decent answers to a majority of the decks you might happen to run into in the early stages of the Team Up meta. That being said, I think that as long as Weavile doesn't rain on the parade, Malamar (FLI; 51) looks great post Team Up!

Buzzwole / Lycanroc-GX

I used to love this deck so much! I played it all the time, it made up a large portion of my deck choices for the end of last season. Recently though, I have not been playing it, but playing against it. My first couple challenges and cups in the Lost Thunder told the same story: me losing to Buzzwole (FLI; 77)  in some close games. This is actually why I started playing Granbull (LT; 138) , I was just so fed up with losing to Buzzwole (FLI; 77) . That being said, the deck was solid in the Lost Thunder meta, certainly under appreciated by a majority of the player base. Buzzwole (FLI; 77)  has pretty solid matchups against a lot of the meta, taking bad matchups to  Granbull (LT; 138) and Lost march, along with a close one to Malamar (FLI; 51) . The new set brings a ton of welcomed Fighting weak Pokemon into play, and Buzzwole (FLI; 77)  will have a field day against them. That is a huge bonus, so I don't think the Mosquito is too disappointed about the lack of new toys. Team Up does not bring much to the table for Buzzwole (FLI; 77) , so we will have to stick to the lists people have been performing well with for months now.

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed my review of Team Up! I got to talk about all of the hyped new cards, good and bad, along with a look at all of the popular decks for the past few months! I am sure it was a lot to take in all at once, but this should prepare anyone who reads it for upcoming tournaments! If your deck is one that benefited from Team Up, you're pretty much already good to go, otherwise, maybe it is time to try something new. Either way, I definitely recommend trying out all the new cards and decks, it will give you a really good grasp of the new meta. If any of you are going to League Cups or League Challenges, I wish you good luck! I will be going to the Oceania International Championships in Australia next week, followed by the Collinsville regional Championships! If you'll be there, feel free to come up and say hi. Otherwise, you can catch me back here later this month with another article. Peace.

[+31] okko


 

Thank you for your time. Please leave us your feedback to help us to improve the articles for you! 

 

 
 

 

_________________________________________________________________

Make sure to follow us on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook to see the latest stories. 

 

Pokémon and its trademarks are ©1995-2018 Nintendo, Creatures, and GAMEFREAK. English card images appearing on this website are the property of The Pokémon Company International, Inc. 60cards is a fan site. Our goal is to promote the Pokemon TCG and help it grow. We are not official in any shape or form, nor affiliated, sponsored, or otherwise endorsed by Nintendo, Creatures, GAMEFREAK, or TPCi.

 

 


user
Zach Lesage

Standard Complete Buy List

07/10/2019 by Zach Lesage // Look at Zach's buy list for Ultra Prism - Unified Minds behind the paywall! (+29)

user
Zach Lesage

Enter the Darkness - Dark Toolbox for Worlds

07/17/2019 by Zach Lesage // Zach goes over his new Dark Toolbox deck featuring Weavile-GX from Unified Minds! (+23)

Welcome to our Pokemon Community Portal. Have a look around and enjoy your stay!

up