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Jose Marrero

"XY-GNR"- A Look at Three Decks for Upcoming Spring Regionals

Jose goes over three decks for upcoming Spring Regionals next month.

05/02/2016 by Jose Marrero

Introduction

Hello again 60cards readers! It's about that time of the season again where players are getting ready for another round of Regionals. Only this time it's Spring Regionals which will also be the last set of Regionals in the US for the season which start next month. Which is why for this next article I'll be going over three decks that I feel are strong plays going into Regionals next month. However, the decks that I discuss will only be for weeks one and two of Spring Regionals as I've yet to test with the new set since I won't be attending week three. Two decks that I'll be going over are nothing new as far as the deck concept goes, however one of the decks is definitely new with Generations implemented into it.

As I said in my last article I'm currently sitting at 509 Championship Points and still in the Top 16, however I'll be attending Georgia Regionals next month for week two to see if I can clinch some last minute points before Nationals. Each deck I discuss I'll be doing an analysis on each as well as give some other card options so you can weigh your options on what exactly you want the deck to do or how you want it built for a certain meta.

With that said, let's go over the first deck in which I created and used to win the Georgia State Championships back during week one of States which also has had success from other numerous players. Only this time for the Expanded format, M Rayquaza-EX/Jolteon-EX.

Analysis

I talked about this deck for the Standard format, however let's go over it for the Expanded format as well because I think this deck will still be a strong contender come Regionals next month. Starting with the Pokemon lines we have a 3-3 M Rayquaza-EX. I prefer to go with all Dragon Rayquaza-EX's because they are not weak to Lightning which can matter in the long run against decks such as, Night March M Manectric-EX, and even Raichu. It also has 10 more hp than the Colorless one which again can matter at some point. Three Megas are a staple in most if not all M Rayquaza-EX decks. Then there's the bread and butter of the deck which is four copies of Shaymin-EX. Just being able to run through a good portion of the deck by turn one is what the deck thrives on when going for a turn one KO assuming it's necessary. Two Hoopa-EX also to be able to swarm attackers easier and find your Pokemon more consistently as well as to fill the bench faster. Two Jolteon-EX which is the decks backup attacker, but mostly in for Night March decks as you saw during the State Championships where Night March was dominant. Jolteon-EX can eat Shaymin-EX's for breakfast which makes it a great backup attacker as I said. If you decide to attack and try to lock the opponent with Jolteon-EX just make sure to take Gallade into account because that's the bane of Jolteon-EX's existence.

One Jirachi-EX is great for searching out your one of Supporters whether it's Skyla or Lysandre or whatever you need at the time. There are plenty of ways to search for Jirachi-EX which is another reason why this deck is so consistent. Guaranteeing yourself a Supporter for the turn is too hard to pass up. One Keldeo-EX so you are able to Rush In and out of status effects and just to abuse it's free retreat so you can go in and out of attackers. Lastly, for the Pokemon is a single copy of Exeggcute which is used for two reasons. The first so you don't have to waste resources making your Ultra Balls and Computer Search basically a one discard use. And the second and probably the more important reason is to guarantee yourself a bench sitter for Sky Field so your damage is increased through Emerald Break. Moving out of the Pokemon and into the Supporters we have all one of's. Colress and N are the decks only shuffle and draw Supporters because you really don't want to have to discard important resources and in this deck almost everything is important. Making sure you have the option to manipulate your opponent's hand is needed because they can just be holding a game winning hand and having the option to draw up to 16 cards is too good to pass up as well thanks to Sky Field. Xerosic is mainly to get rid of Special Energy and to get rid of troublesome Tools that can stop the deck from taking a one hit KO or knockout such as, Assault Vest and Focus Sash. AZ is just overall great for picking up and reusing Shaymins and Hoopas if need be. But more importantly to pick up Pokemon so you can lock with Jolteon-EX against Night March so they don't Lysandre around it and take six prizes that way.

The Skyla I love in this deck because it gives you tons of options early and lategame. Being able to search out whatever piece you are missing to attack with M Rayquaza-EX is too good to pass up as well whether it's the Mega Turbo you need or Spirit Link. However, the main reason I like Skyla is because of Puzzle of Time. Searching out a second one is like searching for Gold because you then get any two cards from the discard which can easily help swarm M Rayquaza-EX's. Lastly, for the Supporters we have Hex Maniac which is needed against decks such as, Greninja and Trevenant. However, Hex Maniac is overall great against almost every deck because most if not all decks run some form of ability that they rely on especially Shaymin-EX and Jirachi-EX Moving out of the Supporters we now get into the four of Items. VS Seeker and Ultra Ball are obvious needs so let's skip those and go straight into Puzzle of Time which I talked about a little already. In this type of deck Puzzle of Time can easily make sure you have a backup attacker ready to go whether it's a Mega Turbo and the Mega or a Spirit Link and Double Colorless Energy which ever combination you need is what makes Puzzle of Time extremely good in M Rayquaza-EX decks. However, if you aren't a fan of Puzzle of Time then simply go with Trainers' Mails. Then there's three Mega Turbo and three Spirit Links as I mentioned to be able to attack with M Rayquaza-EX at a moments notice.

Two Battle Compressor to be able to get Basic Energy and Supporters in the discard easier for Mega Turbo and VS Seekers to be useful. Two Float Stone for Keldeo-EX obviosuly. Then there's one Escape Rope mainly for Primal Groudon-EX. A surprise Escape Rope can be the difference of a win or a loss. One Sacred Ash to get back Pokemon which is a great way to reuse Shaymin or Hoopa-EX for when you discard them when Sky Field get's bumped. My Ace Spec of choice is Computer Search because the decks runs more smoothly with it and since Exeggcute can make it so you only have to discard one card makes Computer Search even more worth it. Then there's four copies of Sky Field as the stadium of choice which should be the only stadium in this deck. Sky Field can give you the option to fill your bench up to eight meaning Emerald Break can max out at 240 damage. Finally the energies are four Double Colorless and three Lightning. I wish there was room for another Lightning Energy but again space is even tighter in Expanded when making decks because of the bigger card pool.

Other card options

Trainers' Mail:

A lot of people seem to like Trainers' Mail in this deck and yeah I can agree, however I much rather play more Supporters because a lot of times when playing this deck you can get away with just going for the turn two attack and plus the deck can still get a turn one attack even without Trainers' Mail. But Trainers' Mail is definitely a consistent card that can get you what you need more efficiently.

Druddigon FLF 70:

This card can be used as your Non EX attacker which is great against Pokemon such as, Vespiquen and Raichu just for the quick prize exchange so you don't have to give up an EX right away.

Jirachi XY Promo 67:

Great against Seismitoad-EX and Giratina-EX obviously. However, the deck only runs three Basic Energies so maybe Jirachi isn't so worth it against Giratina-EX assuming they have you locked already. But you can always just Xerosic off their Double Dragon Energies and if you can get both going to drain Giratina's energy all at once then well that's just bread and butter right there.

Aegislash-EX:

This card is strictly for Vespiquen/Vileplume decks to hopefully get a free win, however I learned first hand that this card is great against Seismitoad-EX/Giratina-EX decks because it forces them to Lysandre around it or Hex Maniac every turn to do damage to it which in turn makes the opponent run through resources quick and potentially even deck out.

Virizion-EX/Grass Energy:

If you go this route then I'm afraid you will have to drop Jolteon-EX altogether. However, adding in Virizion-EX can help against Poison effects on cards such as, Hypnotoxic Laser and Accelgor even though Keldeo-EX can help with this dilemma also.

Altaria ROS 74:

If you expect a good amount of Lightning decks whether it's Manectric-EX or Night March then adding in a 1-1 line of Altaria may just be worth it in the long run. However, I personally rather just risk it for the biscuit because Night March is a tough matchup either way and against Manectric-EX you can win by taking the first two prizes since that's usually how that matchup goes.

Now time to get to one of the newer decks with Generations, Jolteon-EX/Archeops/Gallade.

Analysis

Next up, we have one of the newer decks which revolves around Jolteon-EX being the main attacker while at the same time denying your opponent's Pokemon from evolving. If you look at Jolteon-EX's attack, Flash Ray you can see how great it is against Basic Pokemon reliant decks. And so if you move over to Archeops you will see it's ability prevents your opponent's Pokemon from evolving as I said. Which means your opponent will be forced to attack with Basic Pokemon which you can see why Jolteon-EX is the main attacker. With that said, let's go over the Pokemon counts. Three Jolteon-EX as I said as the main attacker. Jolteon-EX having free retreat is pretty clutch as well making it so you can go in and out of them if need be. It's attack, Flash Ray costs one Lightning and a Double Colorless, but don't fret since the deck does however, run Max Elixirs and Double Colorless Energy as stated to get a turn one Flash Ray going if need be. Two Shaymin-EX of course so we can draw into specific cards that are needed at the time. One Jirachi-EX since it's great for searching out any specific supporters namely Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick in this case. I've also added a Keldeo-EX strictly for Accelgor's Deck and Cover as well as any Sleep effects. Not having to deal with Archeops getting drag stalled is also a great luxury to have because of Keldeo-EX. The one Mewtwo-EX was mainly for opposing Gallades seeing as it can one hit KO Jolteon-EX which we need a quick response back and the answer is Mewtwo-EX since it one hit KO's Gallade for a single Double Colorless Energy due to it's weakness.

One Archeops which I've already discussed, however, I also added a Gallade for a number of reasons. Gallade in general can be versatile in any deck to be honest because it's attack only needs a Double Colorless Energy. Gallade can be used to one hit KO opposing Gallades just like Mewtwo-EX. It also can one hit KO a M Manectric-EX which against that deck you much rather go Gallade or Archeops. Also against the mirror match or against other Jolteon-EX in general Gallade comes in handy. Being able to manipulate your top five cards is also a plus especially against Item Lock decks. That's basically it as far as the Pokemon go so let's move into the supporters. There aren't too many supporters because again this deck relies on Archeops a lot of the times depending on the matchup so if you have too many supporters then that means it would be more likely for you to get a clumped hand of unusable cards to put your hand down to zero if you have multiple supporters in hand which is what the deck doesn't want to see in the opening hand. That's why I only went with two Professor Sycamore because most likely aren't going to want to use it turn one. Which brings me to the two Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick. There's two to make sure if one is prized you still have the other as backup. One N and one AZ because every deck needs at least one N to make sure you have some way of hoping to stop your opponent from winning the following turn.

The AZ is mainly so you can pick up excess benched Pokemon so that Jolteon-EX can do it's job which is to lock and clean up the opponent should they run only Basic attackers as I said before. One Lysandre is a good amount since again you don't want to really open with it and with a heavy Battle Compressor count means you can find it easy assuming it's not prized. Moving out of the supporters we have a max count on VS Seeker, Ultra Ball, Trainers' Mail, Puzzle of Time, and Max Elixir. The Trainers Mails help dig for that turn one Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick and attack easier. Puzzle of Time fits nicely in this deck because it runs a heavy Battle Compressor count as I said meaning you can potentially get a turn one Archeops or Gallade easier or whatever two cards you need. Max Elixir is needed because Jolteon-EX's attack, Flash Ray need three energy, but with Double Colorless Energy you only really need two attachments in a sense. Which is why Max Elixir is perfect in this deck. They can also help power up Mewtwo-EX as well which is nice. You can even power up Keldeo-EX in a single turn if you really wanted to in case your opponent only has a lone Flareon evolved under the Archeops lock. Making sure you have the one hit KO is huge because it forces them to Hex Maniac again or promote Wobbuffet to evolve more Pokemon. I had four Battle Compressor at first but I wanted room for more things so I dropped it to three for now. For the Tools we have two Muscle Band and two Float Stone.

Muscle Band is probably the ideal way to go because the extra 10 damage might matter too much in the long run. Because Pokemon such as, Vespiquen who has 90 hp means you need a Muscle Banded Jolteon-EX to one hit KO it. Or a Muscle Banded Mewtwo-EX to one hit KO a Flareon for a single Double Colorless Energy. Also making sure you one hit KO Yveltal-EX and anything weak to Lightning is crucial. Giving your opponent one less window to have answer is what you want to do if possible. One Super Rod which I'm still unsure if it's even needed because of Puzzle of Time, but for now I guess I'll keep it in and test it more. The Ace Spec is obviously Computer Search because when playing a deck that relies on Maxie's Hidden Ball Trick then you always rather have Computer Search as your Ace Spec since once you find it, it's basically a guaranteed Archeops or Gallade. Now the Stadium of choice I decided on is Silent Lab, which at first I only had one, but after rethinking it two seemed better against decks that run Wobbuffet to try and go through Archeops such as Vespiquen. The Energy count is pretty standard I would say since if your running a deck with Max Elixir then you need to run a good amount of Basic Energy and eight is a great number from testing results.


Other card options

Seismitoad-EX:

Because the deck already runs Double Colorless Energy means adding in Seismitoad-EX as a backup attacker can be nice. Seismitoad-EX being a Basic Pokemon also means it can abuse Max Elixir which is another luxury to have. One thing I learned from Seismitoad-EX is that a well timed Quaking Punch can win games.

Rough Seas:

If you expect a good amount of Trevenant BREAK/Wobbuffet decks then I recommend going with Rough Seas over Silent Lab. Being able to heal all the Silent Fear damage spread can make a huge difference in the matchup assuming they are able to get a BREAK going under Archeops which isn't too hard for them given they play multiple Wally and even Wobbuffet bypasses Archeops.

Analysis

Lastly, this next deck is nothing new however, this list is a little different compared to the list I ran back during Winter Regionals. Breakpoint and Generations were also not legal for weeks one and two of Winter Regionals, which I only played Seismitoad-EX/Giratina-EX at. The differences between both lists were that I dropped one Lysandre, one N, AZ, one Virbank City Gym, two Muscle Band and an Enhanced Hammer for one Colress, four Puzzle of Time, and two Fighting Fury Belt. So you can see I've updated it with Breakpoint cards. Before we get into those changes let's go over the whole deck as a whole starting with the Pokemon and work our way into the supporters and Items. I kept the Pokemon lines the exact same as I played them during Virginia and Illinois Regionals where I went 6-2-1 in swiss at both events respectively. Three Seismitoad-EX is a perfect number because it's the decks main attacker outside of Giratina-EX. You almost always want to attack with Seismitoad-EX first because since your opponent will be under Item Lock then it can buy you time to power up a Giratina-EX. Running four Seismitoad-EX may just be overkill. Two Giratina-EX is also a solid number because you don't want too many of them on your board. A swarm of Seismitoad-EX's can take down decks alone. You always want to have at least another one on the bench ready to go at a moments notice. Two Shaymin-EX and one Jirachi-EX help with consistency. A turn one Jirachi-EX into Ghetsis can cripple the opponent. One Hoopa-EX helps for those situations where you need a Shaymin-EX and an attacker at the same time.

You basically get to KO two birds with one stone which is why I like Hoopa-EX still in this deck. One Latios-EX so you can potentially turn one donk something for a free win. You never know when you will get a free win and in best two out of three a free win is huge. It's second attack also bypasses Jirachi Promos attack as well as Accelgor's Deck and Cover. Latios-EX is an overall solid attacker. The Keldeo-EX is of course as I said numerous times to Rush In and out of attackers when necessary which is another reason why Hoopa-EX is needed. Most of the supporters as you can see are one of's aside from Professor Sycamore. Colress and N are to make sure you don't have to discard too many resources and to renew both yours and your opponent's hands when necessary. Ghetsis as I said can make or break you because if you decide to use your supporter on Ghetsis and your opponent doesn't have enough Items to warrants it's success then you basically wasted your Jirachi-EX however, there are times where you can drain their whole hand and basically take an easy game especially when you follow it up with a Quaking Punch. Hex Maniac is needed for random situations. I've barely used it when it was relevant however, it's still needed. You never know when a clutch Hex Maniac can win you the game. I would love to fit a second Lysandre because Item Lock plus Lysandre is a great combo. But space is so tight so for now I'll stick to one Lysandre since worse case you can always Puzzle of Time it back assuming it's not prized. For the decks energy disruption supporters we have one Xerosic and one Team Flare Grunt. These cards are situational but still needed because if played at the right time they can make a huge impact in the game.

Moving out of the supporters again we have cards such as, VS Seeker, Ultra Ball, Super Scoop Up, Crushing Hammer, and Hypnotoxic Laser all of which are staples in a Seismitoad-EX/Giratina-EX deck. I didn't mention Puzzle of Time because it's fairly new and I even see lists not running them and instead play Trainers' Mail over them. Super Scoop Up is great in this deck because it potentially allows you to rinse and repeat Seismitoad-EX's and I say potentially because Super Scoop Up is a flip effect. Being able to reuse or deny Shaymin-EX or Jirachi-EX prizes is a nice option to have as well. Crushing Hammers help with discarding energy so you can have the momentum. Draining energy plus Item Lock is the bread and butter of the deck. Hypnotoxic Lasers help do extra damage while having the potential to freely Sleep your opponent's active Pokemon which is perfect when you combo it with Quaking Punch because if they stay asleep odds are they are staying asleep thus making Seismitoad-EX take no damage that turn giving you a free turn of attacking the same Pokemon again. Virbank City Gym makes Hypnotoxic Laser do even more damage however, I'm only running one at the moment because of space issues. Puzzle of Time needs no introduction since I've gone over it already and you get the point by now.

As I said, I dropped Muscle Bands for Fighting Fury Belts because in this deck Fighting Fury Belt does more. In Expanded having the extra hp is needed especially when facing up against decks that could otherwise one hit KO you. The Float Stones are for Keldeo-EX once again so you aren't stressed on having to rely on Super Scoop Up flips to get out of the active. The Ace Spec of choice in this deck for now is Rock Guard because it's great against Jirachi so you are able to KO it and at the same time take a free prize. However, Rock Guard is great against every deck and if you don't get one hit KOed them you can Super Scoop it up and do even more free damage with a fresh Pokemon. As I stated, I'm only running one stadium as of now since with Puzzle of Time and Giratina-EX's attack then you should be able to make the one stadium stick if needed. And the energy count is four of each on Double Colorless and Double Dragon. I've seen lists only running three Double Dragon Energy, however because I'm running Latios-EX I want to make sure I have as many as I can use.


Other card options

Skyla:

Normally I would add one of these in when playing Puzzle of Time, however since this list is for Expanded it means you need room for other things such as Hypnotoxic Lasers so I had to sacrifice some non draw Supporters. Jirachi-EX can even grab Skyla for a Float Stone to get Latios-EX easier in the active spot.

AZ:

Again I would love to be able to fit AZ as well because early on it can be used to get Latios-EX in the active spot for a potential turn one donk with the help of Jirachi-EX being able to search AZ out just like Skyla.

Silent Lab:

Running Silent Lab over Virbank City Gym can be good for a number of reasons. Being able to stop Yveltal's Fright Night is one of them and also stopping Eevee's Energy Evolution so they can't get Flareon out easier. Silent Lab also wrecks Aegislash-EX when attacking with Giratina-EX so they don't replace it with another stadium. But overall just being able to shut off Basic Pokemon abilities such as opposing Shaymins and Jirachis can be worth it in the long run. You just have to be careful when going up against Mega Pokemon since you don't want them going through Giratina-EX.

Head Ringer:

I'm not a big fan of Head Ringer in this deck anymore simply because the card is a dead card early on when your trying to draw other cards. I've had games where I lost because I kept drawing into Head Ringers mainly against Vespiquen/Flareon decks so I decided to drop them altogether, however they can still come in handy against heavy reliant EX decks.

Muscle Band:

The 10 extra damage Muscle Band gives over Fighting Fury Belt may not be as relevant as getting an extra 40 hp which is why I went with Fighting Fury Belt over Muscle Band and with the deck running Hypnotoxic Laser it means your doing extra damage anyway. The only time I can really see Muscle Band being more clutch is when Seismitoad-EX can two shot something such as, Landorus-EX, however if they manage to get a Fighting Fury Belt of their own then it doesn't matter anyway making Fighting Fury Belt overall better in my opinion. At least in Expanded.

Computer Search:

Most people prefer Computer Search as their Ace Spec and for good reason. However, because this deck is vulnerable to Jirachi then I prefer to run Rock Guard to be able to get a free prize should the opponent run into it. Plus Rock Guard is overall great against every deck and can be reused with Super Scoop Up assuming you don't get one hit KOed.

Closing Thoughts

Well that's all I have for you guys at the moment regarding Regionals next month. Right now I think I'm liking Jolteon-EX/Archeops/Gallade the most just because of how many options it has. Being able to lock Evolutions and block damage from Basic Pokemon at the same time is extremely strong right now. The other two decks will still be in my top three because I'm very familiar with those decks and they have given me a good amount of Championship Points so far. I hope you were able to learn something from this article whether it's how to build one of these decks or simply how to beat them. I'll have two more article's next month which hopefully one will be on a good run at Georgia Regionals. As I said I'll be at Georgia Regionals so if you see me feel free to come say hello. Good luck at your upcoming Regionals whether you chose to play one of these lists or not.

With that said, if you have any questions about these lists or decks then please feel free to leave me a comment down below 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. Or if you have any other deck ideas and want to see an analysis on it, then by all means post it and I'll take a look. As always, keep an eye out for more articles to come. Until next time!

 -Jose                        

 

[+9] okko


 

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