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Jose Marrero

Worlds Recap and a Look at Three Archeops decks for Fall Regionals

Jose goes over his recap of Worlds and talks about three decks for the upcoming Fall Regionals that implement Archeops.

09/01/2015 by Jose Marrero

                         Introduction

 

Hello, 60cards readers! It's good to be back from the World Championships, as it's always exciting when a new season is about to begin. For this article, I'll be going over a recap of what deck I chose to run on Day 1 and also explain why I chose to go with what I did. After that's all said and done, I'll then talk about three decks that implement Archeops for the upcoming Fall Regionals since I know people want to see Expanded decks.

Thursday before Worlds, I took a short two-and-a-half hour flight to Boston and met up with a few friends at the airport (Justin Sanchez and RJ Cabrera). From there, we grabbed some lunch and took the bus to the Sheraton hotel where we all were staying. Thursday was pretty much spend waiting in lines, the competitor check-in line and the retail store line, because I wanted to make sure I was able to buy things before they sold out. That turned out to be not even close to the case, since Pokémon stocked the store pretty well this year. As I was waiting in line for the store, I heard rumors that we were able to buy three of each thing this year. For the past couple Worlds, they limited everything to one per person, so this time everyone knew to wait in line to take advantage of this. Harrison Leven was one of the few who also waiting in line with me.

However, as we were waiting in line and talking, some random lady came up to us and offered us $100 to take one of our spots in the line because the line was extremely long and eventually they cut it off. I contemplated giving up my spot, but eventually politely declined, but Harrison did give up his spot to the nice lady, which made her day because her grandson was really excited to get in line. After waiting in the lines both for the store and the competitor check-in, I eventually met up with the Sabelbros, since I was staying with them at the Sheraton. Shoutout to them yet again for letting me crash with them. The rest of Thursday night was pretty much spent deciding on what deck to play. I was between two decks: Landorus-EX/Crobat with Leafeon and M Manectrc-EX/Garbodor with Hippowdon. Jason K. also ran Hippowdon, except it was in his Seismitoad-EX/Garbodor deck, so we were both thinking the same thing when it came to Groudon-EX and Manectric-EX.

I chose to go with Landorus because I was thinking the meta to be full of Manectric-EX and Groudon-EX decks, which I was somewhat right about, since I did face up against a Groudon deck piloted by Curtis Lyon in Round 1. Curtis and I had three really good games, but eventually I was able to take the series in Game 3 on turn two or three, with a double Golbat drop onto Curtis's Primal Groudon-EX for my last two Prizes since it was at 200 damage from a previous Leafeon hit.

Following that win, I noticed I was now up against Jason Annichiarico playing Flareon, a matchup I wasn't so sure about. As we got into our games, I immediately noticed it's going to be a tough series because all of Jason's Eevees had 60 HP and he also ran Empoleon. Game 1, I managed to take it to three Prizes, but with Eevee having 60 HP, it was tough to KO them since I needed a double Golbat drop to KO one on the Bench. Jason also managed to get Empoleon out and one-shotting my Landorus-EX, and from there it was pretty much over. Both games were basically the same, with me getting it down to three Prizes, but Empoleon sweeping. Overall, great games, Jason!

After starting 1-1-0 at Worlds, I knew I had to stay calm and focus because two more losses means I'm out of the running of making Day 2. My third round, I'm up against Brandon Smiley pilotting Bunnelby lock, which I was ecstatic about. All three games pretty much go as planned, except for Game 2, where I made a crucial mistake by not using my own Bunnelby to get back my Scoop Up Cyclone, instead milling two off Brandon's deck. Brandon notices and Lysandres up a Landorus-EX with a Head Ringer on it. I notice I have no way of getting it out of the Active, nor do I have enough Energy left to attack since he just kept using Team Flare Grunt, so I conceded Game 2. In Game 3, time was getting close to being called, but I sped up my pace of play and eventually took all my Prizes on turn two or three after time. Great games Brandon!

So now that puts me at 2-1-0 and I'm just hoping to dodge Seismitoad-EX decks, but that definitely wasn't the case because my Round 4 match was up against Bernardo Dias playing Seismitoad-EX/Manectric-EX/Crobat. I did manage to get Game 1 to one Prize, but Bernardo N's me to one and I draw dead. Game 2 was actually worse since my opponent kept running pretty hot with a turn-one Seismitoad-EX/Hypnotoxic Laser/Virbank City Gym and Muscle Band to KO my Hawlucha. From there, I knew it was pretty much over. Now I'm 2-2-0 and I know one more loss and I'm out of Worlds.

Round 5, I'm now up against Seismitoad-EX/Genesect-EX. I wasn't sure how it was going to go, but little did I know my opponent ran Crushing Hammers, Enhanced Hammers, and Head Ringers. I wasn't able to keep up with all the disruption and Hypnotoxic Laser flips, so I finished my Worlds run with a dissappointing 2-3-0 drop. However, I did give my list to Brad Curcio who played it for Day 1 and actually made it to Day 2 at 5-2-0. I knew the deck had potential, but hitting back-to-back Seismitoad-EX decks made it extremely hard. Even the games where I did get Leafeon with a Silver Bangle, I would just dead-draw because of Item-lock and I would whiff Basic Energy to one-shot the Seismitoad. It was definitely frustrating at times, but I mean, that's why matchups and luck are a big part of Pokémon. On Saturday, I decided to play in the Boston Open. Long story short, I end up going 1-2-0 drop after losing to a one-to-six-Prize comeback in the Landorus-EX/Crobat mirror in Game 3 off an N. At this point, I'm just like, "Okay, this definitely isn't my day," so I meet up with people and eventually go for food and play Resistence for most of the day.

I also go into the open gaming room and trade a bunch of stuff with the Japanese players. Between playing Resistance, grabbing food with friends, and trading, I would say I made up for my frustrating losses and it put my happy face back on. This wasn't about to ruin my fun at Worlds. Even if you don't do well, just have fun, because it's still a privilege to be playing there in the first place. Sunday was spend watching the Finals, of course, as well as the 60cards Invitational after the closing ceremonies. Congrats again to Jacob Van Wagner for winning Worlds and Dylan Bryan for winning the 60cards Invitational. I couldn't be more happy for both of them. 

With that said, down below is the list Brad and I used for Day 1. Brad also used it Day 2, but wasn't as fortunate.

                           Day 1 List

I pretty much went back to adding Leafeon in when I remembered Andrew Estrada had made Top 8 at Canadian Nationals with it, so I knew it wasn't a gimmick. I wish I had performed better, but what can you do other than hoping to get better matchups? I made the list about a week before Worlds and I figured it was a good meta call assuming I dodge enough Seismitoad-EX decks. When I gave it to Brad, he literally didn't playtest any games with it, but he's played Landorus-EX/Crobat before so it wasn't all that new, even with Leafeon added. Every time I give Brad a list and we both use the same one, I have a tendancy to not do well and Brad is the one doing well with them. I'm not sure why, but I guess I'm not as lucky as Brad with matchups. I still like seeing friends do well at events even if I'm the odd one out.

Anyway, let's take a closer look at the list. I've been seeing Bat lines at 4-3-2, so I figured I would try it out and it seemed fine. I hate opening with Crobat, so running two felt perfect. However, lategame is where the Crobats shine, and sometimes I wished I ran three. On the other hand, the deck does run Super Scoop Up, Scoop Up Cyclone, and even Sacred Ash to reuse Crobat. Trimming down from the standard 4-4-3 line also gave me enough room to fit the 2-2 Leafeon line. I didn't want to just play a 1-1 line because a piece could easily be Prized in important matchups.

I also had to drop down to two Hawlucha, which was fine since Leafeon is a great answer to Seismitoad-EX anyway. Leafeon was mainly for the Groudon-EX and Kyogre-EX matchups, but of course, they can come in handy against Seismitoad-EX decks. The one Bunnelby was just to make sure I didn't take an autoloss to Wailord decks, but at the same time, it was used to get back neccessary resources. Two Landorus-EX was perfect as well because, again, you can Sacred Ash them back. The one-of Lucario-EX was mainly for Empoleon and Seismitoad-EX, but I rarely used it. Even when Empoleon hit the field, I would then just get one-shotted by Flareon, so it didn't really help all that much in the long run. Either way, I still think you need at least one Lucario-EX. Its second attack did come in handy at times just to refill my hand.

The one Shaymin-EX was really nice early on, but sometimes I wished I played two when it came to lategame because of N plays. For the Supporter line, I went with the standard four Professor Juniper and three N. Then I went with two Colress and two Korrina because I personally just like opening with Korrina most of the time and searching for your main attackers right away is nice. People told me to go two Lysandre, but it was hard to fit two, so I kept it at one. There were times where I really needed it, but just could not find it since the deck doesn't have a way to search for it specifically. Three VS Seeker, Ultra Ball, and Super Scoop Up was fine, but sometimes I wish I'd kept the Repeat Ball in for when I find Korrina early with a Zubat on the field. The Tools I chose to stick with were two Muscle Band and two Silver Bangle.

The Silver Bangles were for Leafeon, but they were nice for Hawlucha as well. With Silver Bangle alone, Hawlucha can do 90 per hit, essentally two-shotting Pokémon-EX. I did have two Focus Sash over the Silver Bangles at first, but since Leafeon was added, I felt that Silver Bangles would come in handy more often, especially against Groudon-EX, Kyogre-EX, and Seismitoad-EX decks. However, when I faced up against Jason's Flareon deck, I wished I'd kept the Focus Sashes in, another reason the matchup was tough. As for the Stadiums, I went with two Fighting Stadium and one Silent Lab, but looking back, I think another Fighting Stadium would have been better in the long run. The one-of Escape Rope was basically just to make sure I had a guaranteed way of getting Landorus-EX or Leafeon out of the Active spot if needed, assuming Super Scoop Up fails. However, the Escape Rope did come in handy in my Round 1 match against Curtis' Primal Groudon, because turn one, he only had a Groudon-EX on the Bench, so I Escape Roped it up essentially stealing the game from there.

A new addition that I don't normally play in this deck is Sacred Ash, but after adding Bunnelby and Leafeon, it made playing it more worthwhile. Also, getting back discarded Bats is awesome too. My ACE SPEC of choice was Scoop Up Cyclone, mainly because it can be used on anything effectively, for example, to reuse the Bats, heal Landorus-EX, and reuse Shaymin-EX, or just to pick it back up to deny the Prizes. The Scoop Up Cyclone came in tremendously handy against Brandon Smiley, who I played in Round 3 because I kept using my Bunnelby to get back the Scoop Up Cyclone over and over to pick up all my Head Ringer'd Pokémon-EX. Overall, I think the list ran fine, although there were times where I just kept whiffing Energy, which was really frustarting. I didn't run Professor's Letter because I needed room for the Leafeon lines.

Why I went with Landorus over Manectric

 

One of the main reasons I opted against playing M Manectric-EX/Garbodor with Hippowdon was due to the fact that I was scared of Landorus-EX/Crobat decks as well as Kyogre-EX. I just didn't want to take those autolosses. You may be thinking, "But, Jose, what about Groudon-EX?" Hippowdon can win the Groudon-EX matchup because I had an AZ in the list to pick up everything but Hippowdon to deny them those Prizes. Hippowdon can also potentially win the Kyogre-EX matchup, but the more I thought about it, I just thought the deck would deck out against Kyogre-EX by the time Hippowdon knocks anything out because it only does 60 damage, and with Rough Seas and Hard Charm, Hippowdon would be there all day just tickling Kyogre-EX. Another reason I chose Landorus over Manectric was because I felt the meta was going to shift toward Manectric-EX and Groudon-EX decks, as I said before.

Down below is the list I would have ran had I decided to go with Manectric.

You would be surprised on how consistent this deck actually is, even with Hippowdon added. Even though I didn't play this deck for Worlds, I'll still go over it. This deck is already consistent, so adding Hippowdon was basically just dropping Empoleon from the standard lists you're probably used to seeing and replacing Water Energy with Fighting Energy. There is also a Hippopotas in the deck just in case Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick doesn't work. Just having the one baby Hippo sitting on the Bench is enough to scare the opponent. Running Jirachi-EX, Shaymin-EX, multiple Trainers' Mail, as well as Computer Search made for easier Maxie plays. You can always fall back on just manually Evolving the baby Hippo, like I said. The one AZ was to make sure we don't lose off Lysandre plays which could easily just pick off non-Hippowdon Pokémon.

I maxed out on the Spirit Links since getting a turn-two M Manectric-EX attacking is key in this deck. I'm positive a 4-3 line is standard since it's the deck's main attacker. A 2-2 Garbodor was to ensure we have the option to shut off Abilities. Even adding a third Trubbish would be nice, just to make finding one easier. I wanted to max out on Float Stone, but since there were only two Trubbish, three was fine. Two Battle Compressor made it less stressful to put Hippowdon or Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick in the discard. The one-of Switch was mainly for Hippowdon in case Float Stone was not found, but it was also used to get anything that's not Manectric-EX out of the Active spot should you find the Switch by turn two. I wanted to fit four Rough Seas, but the more I thought about it, the more three seemed fine. In the mirror match, the deck doesn't care to heal because you want to Hippowdon-lock anyway, and in the Seismitoad-EX matchups, running three Rough Seas is good enough.

Now let's get into the core of the article, a look at three Archeops decks for Fall Regionals, starting with Night March/Archeops.

Three Archeops decks for Fall Regionals

Night March is one of the few decks that incorporates Archeops effectively, mainly because of how consistent and fast the deck already is, so getting Archeops out shouldn't be that hard. The Pokémon line is pretty standard except for a few things that stand out, for example, the Baltoy. This card is for the Shiftry matchup. If you go first and miss the turn-one Archeops, you can simply search out Baltoy and win the game from there. Both options are nice to have against Shifty, but then again, Archeops alone can take down Shiftry, so maybe Baltoy isn't needed in the long run. For those that are a little confused as to why something as simple as a Baltoy can win the Shiftry matchup, it's because of Baltoy's Ancient Trait, which makes it unaffected by Abilites, notably Shiftry's Giant Fan.

One Bunnelby is nice just to make sure we can get back resources, mainly Double Colorless Energy. You can even run Super Rod since it can be used in Expanded. Getting back Mew-EX and Basic Energy could be worth it in the long run. I see people running three Mew-EX which, yeah, was standard back in the day, but I think running two is fine because you mainly want to focus on attacking with non-EX Pokémon anyway. Two Shaymin-EX is pretty standard, but I can see going to three or even four depending how fast you want to be. Some of the Worlds lists that did well ran three or four, so I can see upping that count. The Jirachi-EX is to make sure we can use it to grab Maxie's Hidden Ball trick so Archeops can come out more easily.

Right now, the list only runs one Archeops, but I can see going up to two because we don't want it to be Prized, especially in a matchup that we really need it in. The Supporter line is kind of interesting, so let me go over it. Two Professor Juniper because since the deck runs four Battle Compressor and four VS Seeker, so odds are you're probably going to find them early enough that you don't need to max out on Professor Juniper. That brings me to the one-of N. Usually Night March decks take quick Prizes, so running a heavy count of N can hurt you in the long run. Just running one is good enough. There is also a one-of Maxie's Hidden Ball trick, which I can see upping to two. Two Lysandre so we can drag out easy KOs like Shaymin-EX or anything that's Weak to Lightning or Psychic. I went with a 3/3 split of Trainers' Mail and Acro Bike, which I think is fine for trying to get that turn-one Archeops more effeciently. I maxed out on Dimension Valley because I think every deck will be running some kind of Stadium, so making sure we bump them every time is key since we need Dimension Valley out to make attacking with Pumpkaboo and Mew-EX easier.

There are also two Muscle Band and one Silver Bangle to make sure we can get easier one-hit KOs on Mega Pokémon. The Escape Rope is to ensure that we can get out of the Active spot if we need to, or just to bring up a clutch Pokémon on the Bench that you want KO'd. Right now, Computer Search is my ACE SPEC of choice, but Dowsing Machine can also work well in this deck. The only real difference is that Dowsing Machine can't get any Energy like Computer Search can, which brings me to the Energy count. I went with four Double Colorless Energy, of course, and then I also went with Lightning Energy for now, but the Basic Energy can change depending on what you think the meta will be.

With that said, let's move onto the next deck, Yveltal-EX/Archeops.

This is probably the most popular of the three, since it actually did have quite a good amount of success during Regionals. 60cards' own Chase Moloney and Harrison Leven both won a Regionals with similar lists. If you want to take a look at Chase's list, you can check it out here, but for now, let's take a look at the list I presented above. It's actually quite similar to Chase's aside from a few inclusions. Of course, when running a deck's main attacker, you almost always want to max them out, but this time there's three Yveltal-EX in the list. Three seems like plenty because they aren't going to go down that easily. Two Darkrai-EX are here so you can freely Retreat anything that has a Darkness Energy attached to it.

There are also two Seismitoad-EX because the deck runs Hypnotoxic Laser and Double Colorless Energy, making Seismitoad-EX that much more worthwhile. The one-of Keldeo-EX is clutch when you're affected by Special Conditions, and since Darkrai-EX is also in the list, it makes for easier Retreats when you Rush In. The Jirachi-EX is mainly to search Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick. Right now, there is just one Shaymin-EX, but you can add in another, although I think one is fine since there is Jirachi-EX for insurance as well. The one baby Yveltal is great just to set up KOs so Yvetal-EX can come in and sweep. You can even up the baby Yveltal count if you expect Night March to be big. Just like in Night March, maybe adding a second Archeops is ideal since it's a big part of the deck's strategy when facing decks that can Evolve.

The Baltoy is to make sure we have an easier answer to Shiftry, but again, if you can get Archeops out, then the Baltoy is may not be worth the trouble. The deck probably doesn't need Bunnelby, but I just like knwoing that if I discard too many resources, I can get them back. Chase's list ran a Spiritomb for the Virizion-EX/Genesect-EX matchup. If you expect to see those decks come back, then I recommend adding the Spiritomb and possibly dropping either Baltoy or Bunnelby. The Supporter line is pretty standard and like I said before, going with a second Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick is probably worthwhile. You can also go up to four Dark Patch if you want to try and get turn-one attacks off more effeciantly. Another thing that can be added is Shadow Circle in case Lightning decks such as Mega Manectric or Night March start to see more play. Four Battle Compressor make sure you get Archeops as well as Darkness Energy (for Dark Patch) in the discard. The ACE SPEC at the moment is Computer Search, but I can easily see Dowsing Machine because it can be used as another Dark Patch or even Hypnotoxic Laser. I think that bascally covers this deck.

With that said, let's move onto our final deck, Seismitoad-EX/Archeops.

This is yet another Archeops variant that performed well at Regionals. Shoutout to Jordan Roberts for lending me a hand with the list since he was the one to make Top 4 at one of the past Regionals with it. First, let's start off with the Pokémon line. Four Seismitoad-EX is a no-brainer since it's the decks main attacker and prefered starter since you want to start the Quaking Punch train right away. Two Shaymin-EX are for consistent draws and one Jirachi-EX is to search for Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick. One Keldeo-EX is to ensure we can Rush In and Retreat out of Special Conditions, which brings me to the two Munna. These can help put your opponent's Active Pokémon to Sleep should you flip heads on its Ability. If you flip tails, that means your Active Pokémon is Asleep instead, but don't fret, because that's what Keldeo-EX is for.

The Keldeo-EX/Munna combo is extremely good in the Seismitoad-EX mirror, so I recommend finding Keldeo-EX and Float Stone as soon as possible when facing the mirror. By this time, you've noticed my trend with running both Baltoy and Bunnelby in all three of these decks. I like to give myself the best options when facing bad matchups. Go to two Archeops if you fear it being Prized. The Supporter count in this deck is quite unique, so let's go over them one by one. Four Professor Juniper, of course (unless you're a Sycamore type of person, but either way, maxing them out is ideal in this deck). Now you see all the one-of Supporters starting with N, because you really don't need too many of them in this deck.

One Xerosic and Team Flare Grunt to basically help in the mirror and to get rid of Tools that were attached turn one, such as a Float Stone, which makes Xerosic really clutch in this situation. Also, up the Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick count if you feel that another is needed in case it's Prized. I know I've said this many times now, but I want to make sure you know that I suggested playing two of each. Now comes the deck's newest addition, Hex Maniac. When using this card, make sure you use all your Abilities first, whether it's Munna or Keldeo-EX. Hex Maniac is a great counter to Aegislash-EX, potentially giving you the option to two-shot them with Hypnotoxic Laser and Muscle Band plus Virbank City Gym. Three Trainers' Mail are just for more consistency since the deck runs tons of Trainers that can be used right away.

This brings me to the three Crushing Hammers. I'm not sure if these are needed, but they can come in handy in any matchup. Four Battle Compressor are to ensure we can get Supporters and Archeops in the discard more easily. There are also three Super Scoop Ups, just to have the option of healing off a damaged Seismitoad and to reuse Shaymin-EX if need be. Two Float Stone, of course, for Keldeo-EX so it's easier to Rush In and out without any drawback. Right now, the list runs only Double Colorless Energy, but with Bunnelby, you can make sure you don't run out of Energy. However, you can run a couple Water Energy to have the Grenade Hammer option. There are so many things you can fit in a Seismitoad-EX deck and I think I was able to fit a little of everything, aside from the Basic Energy.

                    Closing Thoughts

 

That's all I have for you guys at the moment. I hope you enjoyed reading my Worlds recap and I hope these three Archeops decks give you great testing results, should you decide to play one of them come Regionals. In my opinion I believe the Yveltal and Night March variants will see the most play of the Archeops decks simply because they hit the hardest. If you have any questions about any of these decks or lists, feel free to ask down below in the comments section or message me on Facebook and I'll be sure to get to them as soon as possible. As usual, if you enjoyed reading this article, then please consider giving it a thumbs up. If you want to see a specific type of article or topic next time, then don't hesitate to give me ideas down below and I'll consider them.

Before I forget, did you guys enjoy watching the 60cards Invitational? Do you guys have any recommendations for next year's Invitational? If so, I would love to hear them down below. In my opinion, it went quite well other than the fact that it couldn't be streamed. However, most of the games were recorded, so be sure to check out Josh Marking's YouTube channel, TeamFishKnuckles, for updates. Also, don't forget to tell your friends to check out our PRO Member subscription. We will have tons of new content for you guys, as well as a few new writers, so be sure to stay hyped for that. As always, keep an eye out for more articles to come. Until next time!

-Jose

[+12] okko


 

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