Experts' corner

Jose Marrero

A Closer Look at the Brazilian International Championship Finalist Decks

Jose discusses the two decks that made the Finals at the Brazilian International Championship last weekend.

04/26/2017 by Jose Marrero


Hello again, 60cards readers! Last weekend concluded the third International Championship of the year held in Brazil. The event was streamed on copagoficial's Twitch channel so if you want to go back and rewatch the games, there you go. Before I go any further I want to quickly give a big shout out to USA's own Connor Finton on his Top 4 finish last weekend in Brazil. Top 8 in Brazil consisted of 4 Decidueye-GX/Vileplume, 2 Volcanion, 1 Turbo Darkrai-EX and 1 M Rayquaza-EX. It's no surprise seeing Decidueye-GX/Vileplume still taking over the format even though Volcanion won the last big event prior to Brazil. Item lock is just too strong and having an ability like Feather Arrow that stacks free damage every turn is hard to take down. Ultimately, the finals of Brazil ended in a Decidueye-GX/Vileplume mirror, however, both variants were quite unique in their own ways. Both Juan and Thiago played well all weekend as I was watching from home since I, unfortunately, didn't attend Brazil. So for this next article, I want to discuss both Juan and Thiago's lists and also talk about some other additions you can play in either variant.

With that said, let's start with the winning list piloted by Juan Pablo from Chile.


Juan was able to represent his country of Chile quite well by winning the third International Championship which was held in Brazil. Goncalo won a Regionals with a similar build in Europe which I'm sure had to do with Juan's success. At this point, it's safe to say every Decidueye-GX/Vileplume build should be running a maxed line of Decidueye-GX and a 2-2-2 line of Vileplume because literally, every top list has the same numbers. Some builds I see running just two Shaymin-EX which I think having the third one comes in handy more times than not because the deck wants to dig and dig for that turn one Vileplume no matter how many Shaymin-EX it takes. Juan went with a single copy of Lugia-EX which is by far the best single attacker in the deck. Both Aero Ball and Deep Hurricane in conjunction with Feather Arrow can do some serious damage. Deep Hurricane is used a lot more than you may think and this is because it can do a base of 150 should you discard a stadium in play, and with just one Feather Arrow you are doing 170 damage, which one hit KO's most relevant EX in the format. Now the addition of Jolteon-EX I love because we know Turbo Darkrai-EX, Volcanion, and Yveltal-EX/Garbodor are three of the top decks in the Standard format which makes Flash Ray extremely useful in these matchups and if you combine that with Vileplume it's going to be even harder for the opponent to have an answer.

Since the deck already plays Rainbow Energy, then why not add Regice to help against EX based decks such as M Rayquaza-EX and even Volcanion since it forces them to power up non-EX Volcanions? Regice is also great against M Mewtwo-EX which hands down wins that matchup because they have no way of going around Regice unless they play Espeon-GX which is tough for them to get out while Vileplume is in effect. They can, however, use Shrine of Memories and Damage Change to remove Mewtwo's damage except it won't effect Regice still so it becomes a stalemate. This is okay because you have Feather Arrow to do damage anyway and eventually you can just bump Shrine of Memories assuming they are in Mega form. Moving out of the Pokémon and into the Trainers, we can see that 99% of it is pretty Standard in what you will see in most Decidueye-GX/Vileplume lists. Only the Pokémon and Energy counts are what really differentiates builds between one another. Of course, because Juan went with Jolteon-EX and Regice means he had to run Rainbow Energies which is fine because you can still use Hollow Hunt GX you just take 10 damage is all which isn't that big of a deal in the long run.

Other card options


This card can also take advantage of Rainbow Energy similar to that of Jolteon-EX and Regice. Glaceon-EX blocks Evolution Pokémon from doing damage to it such as Vespiquen and Mega based decks. However, Jolteon-EX and Regice pretty much handle the current format, making Glaceon-EX not as needed as the other two.


Because Garbodor decks are still being played having the option to get rid of their Tools with Beedril-EX can come in handy since they no longer can reattach another Tool onto their Garbodor if Vileplime is out. This also opens up a window where you can then Lysandre Garbodor and Feather Arrow around it since it has a three retreat cost.


This card is great against the mirror because once you put 80 damage on all your opponent's Decidueye-GX you can then use Espeon-EX's attack to remove their highest stage making all Decidueye-GX KOed at the same time. Takuya Yoneda played one in his Top 8 Australia list which ultimately helped him beat a handful of mirrors.


Another solid addition you can play because of its first attack, Dark Forest which does 20 damage and the active Pokémon can't retreat which is great because most decks these days rely on Float Stone. You can Lysandre something with a heavy retreat cost to chip away with Feather Arrow. You just have to remember that Dark Forest does damage so eventually whatever Pokémon you wanted active will get KO'd.


Connor Finton played one in his Top 4 Brazil list. Even though Lugia-EX is the overall better attacker doesn't mean Tauros-GX isn't useful. It's GX attack, Mad Bull GX is the only reason why you would play it. Against decks such as Turbo Darkrai-EX or Yveltal-EX/Garbodor Mad Bull GX can do wonders and if they ignore Tauros-GX then you can still do a solid 60 damage anyway with Horn Attack. You most likely will want to use Decidueye-GX's GX attack instead however, you never know when an easy two prizes will present itself making it hard to pass up.

Meowth FOC:

Pablo Meza played this card in his 2nd place list from Australia. Against Volcanion if you are able to Lysandre up a Hoopa-EX or a non-energy Volcanion-EX then you can take advantage of its attack, Turmoil Strike which does 50 damage to one of your opponent's Pokémon with damage on them which fits perfectly in this deck because of Feather Arrow. You will stack up damage in no time with Turmoil Strike.

Mewtwo EVO:

Because M Mewtwo-EX/Garbodor is a big threat in the Standard format makes Mewtwo a solid addition because your opponent will try and fuel a huge M Mewtwo-EX to eventually threaten one hit KO's. A surprise Mewtwo against M Mewtwo-EX can come in clutch and be game changing.

Jirachi XY 67 Promo:

Having the option to remove Special Energy with Jirachi can help buy time to set up more Decidueye-GX and if you have Vileplume out while attacking with Jirachi might make it more difficult for your opponent to find more energy.

Down below is Juan Pablo's 1st place interview with The Chaos Gym. Be sure to subscribe for updates on new videos.

Now let's hop on over to Thiago's 2nd place list.


Funnily enough, Thiago was 2nd seed going into Day 2 and 2nd seed going into Top 8, then eventually finishing 2nd overall. As you can see Thiago's list compared to Juan's is literally seven cards different if you include the Energy. Juan played Jolteon-EX, Regice, a 3rd Shaymin-EX, and 4 Rainbow Energy; while Thiago instead played a second copy of Lugia-EX, a 1-1 line of Yanmega, a 3rd Lysandre, and three Grass Energy--so even though their lists are 90% identical they are still quite different in their own way. Thiago went with a more standard approach, which is what you are used to seeing in a given Decidueye-GX/Vileplume build except two card stands out most from all others and that is Yanmega and the third copy of Lysandre. At first, I immediately thought of Quad Lapras-GX when thinking of Yanmega's addition. I assume Yanmega was to help combat against it because if they have a Tool on Lapras-GX then Yanmega can one hit KO them. However, the main reasoning is that Yanmega can attack for free making Crushing Hammers and Team Flare Grunt ineffective against Yanmega. Yanmega having free retreat and taking advantage of Forest of Giant Plants had to play a big part in the deck's inclusion as well.

Overall I can see why Yanmega was a solid fit, however, you as a player should test Yanmega out yourself to see if it is worth the spot and if it does do what it's meant to do. The third Lysandre actually seems really good because you never know when that extra Lysandre will come in clutch for dragging up a heavy retreater early on before they Parallel City them away. Playing three Lysandre helps for finding them faster so you can stall right away. Lugia-EX is the best single attacker in the deck which is why Thiago played two of them because he knew how strong Lugia-EX is in any given match. Against Volcanion you can't really attack with Decidueye-GX or else you risk being easily one hit KOed which makes Lugia-EX come in handy because Volcanion-EX needs three Energy to use Volcanic Heat making Aero Ball do even more damage. Overall I like Thiago's list which will surely see play at upcoming events. It's always nice when you change a list to your own liking and still perform well with it because it gives you a huge sigh of relief knowing you can make a deck even better than before.


Other card options

The same as the list above.

Closing Thoughts

That will conclude another short article on two more finalist decks except this time on the Brazilian International Championship. Both variants are strong in their own way as you can see. It's up to you as a player to decide which variant suits you best and your playstyle. Of course both Jolteon-EX and Regice help against Volcanion seeing how that was one of the decks to beat going into Brazil after it's win at Utah Regionals. Juan Pablo made a great meta call that ultimately netted him a whopping 500 CP and $10,000 which is crazy to think about. Still, Thiago's list did work too because he was the first seed going into Day 2 and with his trusty Yanmega tech he was able to finish extremely strong. The next big Standard event is Virginia Regionals in a couple of weeks which I'll be attending and still be representing Team ARG. I recommend you study these two lists because without a doubt they will see play come Virginia. If you see me in Virginia feel free to come say hello and if you are attending then the best of luck to you and I hope you perform better than expected.

With that said, don't forget to check out The Chaos Gym on YouTube and Twitch for updates and player interviews, as well as live streaming from Grafton Roll and Rahul Reddy. If you want to help support my team, be sure to check out Team ARG's Pokémon page on Facebook, Team ARG Pokemon-TCG, for tons of deck lists and interviews from great players. I know we recently lost some awesome players, but don't worry the team will eventually be adding in new talent. If you have any questions about these lists or decks in general or about Team ARG then please feel free to leave me a comment 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, 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!


-Twitter @Jose_MarreroTCG


[+16] okko


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