Experts' corner

Jose Marrero

Top 32 Costa Mesa Regionals Report with Gyarados/Gallade and Silvally-GX for Charlotte

Jose analyzes his Top 32 Gyarados/Gallade list from Costa Mesa Regionals as well as discusses a new take on Silvally-GX paired with Zoroark-GX and Metal attackers.

03/15/2018 by Jose Marrero



What's going on 60cards readers! I am happy to be back writing again after a recent Top 32 finish at Costa Mesa Regionals not too long ago. Shout out to my buddy Franco Takahashi for the initial list and the idea to play the deck I did as well as Israel Sosa for being a god and picking/dropping me off at the airport. Because of this, I'll be dissecting the Gyarados/Gallade list I used to place 22nd overall out of over 500 players. Following that, I'll give a rundown of other card options you can add to the deck, and then give a brief tournament report on my rounds and how they went. Next, I'll transition into a deck I've been toying around with for the upcoming Charlotte Regional Championships this weekend, Silvally-GX/Zoroark-GX with Metal attackers. The deck has a little bit of everything and I'm excited to showcase it to you all. I strongly believe the deck can go far if you hit the right matchups and hopefully dodge some of the fewer played decks that would otherwise give it trouble. Nonetheless, the deck is strong in the current standard format until the new Lucario-GX comes out that is. Even then it still might be playable but only time will tell.

With that said, let's splash right into the Gyarados/Gallade list I used at Costa Mesa Regionals.

The Serpentine Dragon and the Premonitioner


4-3 Gyarados

The deck's main attacker. Often, you can opt to manually evolve one Gyarados depending on the matchup because it can still do 180 damage with a Choice Band. However, if not then Gyarados has to be Archie’d out, but now you can do a massive 230 if need be with its Venting Anger attack. For each Magikarp in your discard, Venting Anger does 50 damage for a single Double Colorless Energy. I used the Submerge Magikarps because they can't be sniped with damage for easy KO's namely Buzzwole-GX.

1 Gallade

Great card against Zoroark-GX decks but at the same time clutch in conjunction with Oranguru since they make a nice combo to get more efficient Archie plays off.

2 Tapu Koko Promo

Mainly for its free retreat since after something gets KOed you need a free retreater if you don't already have another attacker ready. Flying Flip also helps with hitting magic numbers easier. One Flying Flip can do wonders and any more than that is just icing on the cake.

1 Oranguru

Ghetsis can be a pain so having Oranguru out to make sure you still can draw up to at least three cards is ideal. Great partner with Gallade as I mentioned too.

1 Oricorio

This card I almost took out for Bunnelby, though I just said screw it and not worry about Wailord-EX. Oricorio was actually the reason I won my last round of day 1 and thus ultimately made day 2 so I am glad I kept it. I kept Oricorio for the Night March matchup. Fun fact I didn't face a single Wailord-EX or Night March the whole tournament.

3 Archie's Ace in the Hole/1 Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick

Both needed to get Gyarados and Gallade out. I can see going with a 2/2 split. I know Nick's 9th place Costa Mesa list played two of each, though he also played two Gallade.

1 Professor Sycamore/1 N

Even though you are likely going to Archie or Maxie every turn you just never know when you may need to use Professor Sycamore or N if you do miss the turn one Archie or Maxie.

1 Lysandre/1 Guzma

To be honest I liked the 1/1 split because it gives you both options in certain scenarios.

4 Trainers' Mail/4 Order Pad/4 Battle Compressor

It is all for the consistency, consistency, consistency. If you hit even just one Order Pad it'll almost always guarantee you, Archie or Maxie. If you flip tails on most of them it is okay because one is all you need. I flipped pretty bad on them yet still pulled off the Archie or Maxie play most of the time. Trainer's Mail speaks for itself and Battle Compressor is needed to get Gyarados, Gallade, and Magikarps in the discard as well as supporters if need be.

3 Choice Band

The deck needs to make Gyarados hit over 200 damage.

1 Float Stone

You can't always rely on Tapu Koko's free retreat so having Float Stone as insurance is nice.

1 Energy Loto

After using Archie or Maxie, you will want to find a Double Colorless Energy. That is where Energy Loto can come in the clutch because you are technically drawing 12 cards which hopefully there is one in there.

1 Special Charge

The deck's only means of energy is Double Colorless so having Special Charge is highly recommended even though the deck plays Puzzles of Time.

1 Field Blower

Getting rid of Parallel City and Fighting Fury Belts can come in handy for easier one hit KO's.

1 Rotom Dex

Rotom dex is for when you prize your Magikarp, Maxie, Gallade, and too many Double Colorless energy.

1 Parallel City

Having a stadium to get rid of your own Magikarp should you open with one can come in handy.

1 Computer Search

The best Ace Spec for this type of deck that is for sure. Computer Search should almost always warrant the success of either Archie or Maxie.

Other card options


Nick's 9th place Costa Mesa list ran one Shaymin-EX which I honestly thought about adding last minute but decided otherwise. Overall I felt the deck did not need Shaymin-EX because it can be a huge liability and plus the bigger the hand is the more likely you may miss the Archie or Maxie play if you have too many supporters in hand.

Sudowoodo GRI 66

The only card I wish I had put into the deck before Costa Mesa. For some reason I forgot all about Sudowoodo. This card could have changed the Zoroark-GX matchup drastically, if they did not use Ghetsis before you got a turn. Sudowoodo makes it to where the opponent can't use both Hex Maniac and Ghetsis on the same turn. This is especially nice because if they use Hex Maniac to KO either Gallade or Gyarados that means they are not using Ghetsis to take your hand. If they use Ghetsis then they are not KOing the active Gallade or Gyarados so it is almost a win-win situation if you really think about it.

Bunnelby PRC 121

This is needed if you want to win against mill decks in general.

Acro Bike

I know Nick's 9th place Costa Mesa list ran Acro Bikes, though I don't think they are needed. The deck ran fine without them, and I'd rather not risk discarding important resources if I don't have to.

Tournament Report

Day 1

Round 1 - Phan Vam - Buzzwole-GX/Lycanroc-GX/Carbink BREAK: WW (1-0-0)

To be honest I don't remember much about this match other then it was very favorable. Phan didn't play Ghetsis so it was a swift 2-0 victory.

Round 2 - Nathan Drumm - Ho-Oh-GX/Kiawe: WW (2-0-0)

Game one Nathan opens with double Ho-Oh-GX to my Tapu Koko. Nathan plays first and has a really strong start with an attachment on the benched Ho-Oh-GX as well as hits Max Elixir and then uses Kiawe onto his active Ho-Oh-GX and passes the turn. I immediately capitalize on this and attach a Double Colorless and Choice Band onto Tapu Koko as well as getting a turn one Gyarados. I flying flip for 100 and pass the turn. The following turn my Tapu Koko is KOed but then I follow up with Energy Drive to finish off the Ho-Oh-GX and from there Gyarados was able to clean up the rest of the prizes. Game two was similar, though I just used Gyarados the whole game for a pretty convincing 2-0.

Round 3 - Vince Hardy - Buzzwole-GX/Lycanroc-GX/Carbink BREAK: WW (3-0-0)

Again no Ghetsis and thus another swift 2-0 victory. This matchup is honestly so one-sided as long as you don't miss Archie's Ace in the Hole.

Round 4 - Isaiah Williams - Zoroark-GX/Quad Eggs: LL (3-1-0)

Game one I open Magikarp to Isaiah's Tapu Lele-GX and play second to a Red Card plus Ghetsis and quickly go into game two. I open Magikarp yet again but this time Isaiah opens with Shaymin-EX. I draw and my hand is unplayable and am forced to literally pass as Isaiah has the Double Colorless in hand already to win a quick 2-0 over me.

Round 5 - Michael Del Rosario - Seismitoad-EX/Golisopod-GX/Karen: WLT (3-1-1)

I win game one because I believe Michael prized Karen and I went first. Game two was looking good for me but then Michael played his whole hand down just to Karen and Quaking Punch but it paid off. Game three went to time, though I would have lost if we had more time.

Round 6 - Chris Gray - Glaceon-GX/Zoroark-GX: WW (4-1-1)

Fairly easy matchup since Glaceon-GX didn't really affect me and I could just one hit KO them. I take the series 2-0.

Round 7- Antonio Rios - Zoroark-GX/Quad Eggs: WW (5-1-1)

I don't know how I managed to 2-0 this matchup but I did and that's all I remember. 

Round 8 - Jimmy Zhang - Zoroark-GX/Quad Eggs: LL (5-2-1)

Welp...another Zoroark-GX/Quad Eggs deck this time against Jimmy. This man played Ghetsis against me so much that I travelled back through time all the way to the Stone Age. I lose 2-0 pretty handily.

Round 9 - George Hall - Seismitoad-EX/Zoroark-GX: WLW (6-2-1)

I believe George prized Karen game one and I played first and were able to manually evolve Gyarados and take two hit KO's. I also flipped a number of heads on Sleep checks. Game two George makes quick work of me and locks me up pretty fast. However, game three is a really close one and at one point I thought I was done for but out of nowhere, I start to make a comeback somehow. All of a sudden I'm at one prize card to George's one or two. Time eventually gets called and I'm turn three and am able to use Oricorio for an exact 60 damage to George's benched Zorua to take a really close and good series.

Day 2

Round 10 - Reginald Abram - Buzzwole-GX/Lycanroc-GX/Carbink BREAK: WW (7-2-1)

I was super confident in this match after besting two of them already 2-0. It goes as expected with a smooth 2-0 over my opponent. Reginald played well but not much he could do to a swarm of non EX/GX attackers that are threatening a one-hit KO every turn. Reginald was a great guy to play against and I wish him the best the rest of the season.

Round 11 - Joe Ruettiger - Zoroark-GX/Lycanroc-GX: WW (8-2-1)

This match was actually streamed and recorded. My games with Joe are down below if you want to go ahead and watch it and see how it played out, though I spoiled it already, the games were exciting.

Round 12 - Nick Conocenti - Gyarados/Gallade: WLT (8-2-2)

I really wanted this win because it would have meant I just needed to ID twice or win one of my last two rounds to make Top 8. Game one goes as planned as I play first and get Gyarados and a Magikarp on the board. In the mirror, you only need three Magikarp in the discard and a manually evolved Gyarados. We both knew how to play the mirror. I eventually win game one after trading KO's every single turn, though going first gives you a big advantage. Game two Nick has the same ridiculous start as I did in game one and on my first turn I top deck another supporter and now am one card shy of the turn one Gyarados. I'm pretty far behind at this point so we move into game three where we both are set up but time is called with us having lots of prizes left. This tie was unfortunate for me since I played up to Nick and he was at 27 points to my 26 and 30 points was the bubble.

Round 13 - Daniel Lynch - Zoroark-GX/Quad Eggs: WLL (8-3-2)

Game one was very long and eventually, I was able to take it. However, game two was very fast with Daniel playing first with a turn one Red Card plus Ghetsis. The game lasted two turns and we move into game three. It get's really close but I start to play too fast and end up passing the turn before using two Battle Compressors in the hand. Daniel uses Ghetsis over and over again and from there I lose 2-1. This was the win and in for both Daniel and I and because I lost I knew I was out of Top 8. Daniel played well and congrats again to him on his overall second-place finish.

Round 14 - Rahul Reddy - Buzzwole-GX/Lycanroc-GX/Carbink BREAK: I conceded (8-4-2)

Rahul and I were both at 26 match points and we knew winner would be Top 16. I knew I could just slaughter Rahul since he was playing an auto win for me since I 2-0ed three other Buzzwole-GX/Lycanroc-GX/Carbink BREAK decks prior to our match. However, the extra 20 points may have mattered to Rahul more so than me at the time so I gave the match to him. Overall the deck ran very well and my three losses all-tournament were to the exact deck and to some great players. I did tie to an unfortunate matchup and then the mirror as you read. I would give the deck 8/10 and I can see myself playing it at the next Expanded Regionals except with Sudowoodo included.

With that said, let's now move into Silvally-GX/Zoroark-GX/Metal.

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