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Aaron Tarbell

All Decidueye All Day

Welcome to my first PRO Member article! Collinsville Regionals is coming up so let’s start exploring Decidueye GX in the Expanded format.

02/21/2017 by Aaron Tarbell

Expanded Decidueye

Decidueye is one of the most-hyped cards out of Sun and Moon, and with good reason. Its hit points are nearly that of Wailord, it has a perfect typing in association with coming quickly into play, its GX attack is cheap and awesome, it has a hard hitting main attack, and its ability provides consistent control of where to place damage. The last reason, in particular, is the main proprietor of the control that Decidueye GX can provide in a game: it's able to set up multiple knockouts in a turn, provide early aggression before attacking, knock out small but threatening Pokémon that need to evolve, and focus down threats that can knock out Decidueye or its support Pokémon.

Decidueye is a strong enough card by itself to create a relatively competitive deck, if given enough consistency cards in standard. In expanded, Decidueye itself would probably not be enough to win a tournament, but its attacks have such perfect costs, that a majority of the better attackers that benefit from Decidueye’s ability to control a game fit with it well. Given the strengths of Decidueye, the three best partners for allowing Decidueye to control a game are Seismitoad EX, Exeggutor, and Latios EX. Given the limitations on space in a deck, whenever there are so many strong cards as there are currently in expanded, it is unlikely that these attackers could be splashed into the same deck, but each of these partners have merit for being paired with Decidueye GX.

List for Consistency

Seismitoad/Decidueye is currently one of the most-hyped decks for St. Louis Regional Championships. One of the main reasons for this is that Seismitoad-EX with Crobat has shown to be such a strong combination in the past and extremely competitive in expanded, and Decidueye is able to mirror much of the benefits of Crobat with Seismitoad, along with some advantages. Seismitoad-EX/Decidueye GX is able to establish item lock, provide the extra damage needed to limit the time the opponent has to draw into what they need, and gives the deck the potential to take prizes on its own turn. Decidueye GX provides some advantages over Golbat and Crobat from, overall, putting more damage into play than bats throughout the game, providing a strong attack with typing that can make it a threat to counter Pokémon that Seismitoad EX can struggle with (such as opposing Seismitoad EX, Zygarde EX, and Primal Groudon EX), and establishing a much larger wall than Crobat whenever Seismitoad EX cannot attack.

Unfortunately, a build of Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX, such as the one below, oriented around streaming Decidueye, has shortcomings when being compared to Seismitoad EX/Crobat that make it not strictly better. Seismitoad EX/Crobat has a much higher chance of using Quaking Punch on the first or second turn of the game due to Zubat having free retreat. When compared to Rowlet's retreat cost of one, Crobat, Golbat, or Zubat will rarely ever be stuck active, which could be an out for an opponent to abuse items and regain control of the game. Also, Seismitoad EX with Crobat generally has more space in the deck to dedicate to strong cards such as Hypnotoxic Laser, Super Scoop Up, and Silent Lab.

In my experience, this list is as consistent as possible for getting out Decidueye GX early while including cards necessary for the deck to be successful. Two Seismitoad EX is the minimum number necessary for the deck to reliably establish a string of Quaking Punch in the game. A 4-4-4 Decidueye GX line provides the potential to set up four Decidueye GX at the same time, which can overwhelm the opponent early, prevent awkward situations after prizes have been taken, and give Seismitoad EX more damage on the field to win without access to the Virbank City/Hypnotoxic Laser combination. A thick line also allows for multiple Decidueye GX to be set up without being significantly hindered by what the prizes are in a game.

Two Exeggcute allow for free Ultra Balls and Computer Search while providing more targets for Battle Compressor, since Battle Compressor can allow for quick Decidueye GX with Revitalizer, as well as prevent dead draws by getting a supporter. But Battle Compressor can also be underwhelming whenever these are the only targets for it, since it’s rare that more than 2 pieces of a Decidueye GX line are wanted in the discard, and only one supporter is ever necessary to grab with Battle Compressor to turn on VS Seeker.

The thin energy line resembles that of any Seismitoad EX deck in the past due to the cheap costs of Quaking punch, and is further justified by the GX attack being able to get back Double Colorless Energy later in the game.

A line of 4 Forest of Giant Plants is the most consistent way to get around evolution rules that can slow the deck down exponentially, and a copy of Delinquent combined with Jirachi EX, Battle Compressor, 4 stadiums, and VS Seeker provide the most consistent threat of being able to take an opponent’s hand down to zero. Delinquent is generally one of the best cards to run in decks that prevent opponents from playing cards or having to conserve resources, because Delinquent can abuse the turns when they are allowed to use a lot of resources by taking away the few they retain for the following run.

Hex Maniac is this version’s only way to get around Archeops, preventing it from coming into play, but following a large Colress, one Hex can be enough to put 2 or 3 Decidueye GX into play with a combination of Revitalizer and free Ultra Balls. The rest of the deck is pretty self-explanatory.

Matchups

This version of Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX will provide the basis for understanding the matchups the deck has in Expanded. Not to be long winded, but there are 23 deck archetypes that I expect could do well in this marvelously diverse format. These include Turbo Dark, Yveltal, Trevenant, Seismitoad EX/Crobat, Groudon, Greninja, Night March, Flareon, Wailord, Sabeleye, Rainbow Road, Rayquaza, Blastoise, Zygarde, Accelgor/Wobb, Eels, Solgaleo GX/Bronzong, M Gardevoir, Volcanion, M Manectric, Decidueye, Lurantis, and Plume Box.  I would be surprised if three decks that were not included in this list made top 32, and even more surprised if I played against one that’s not listed. While that seems to be a large margin for error, there can only be so many decks that people prepare for in a format, and these are typical decks that have been present in expanded recently, as well as what I have discussed with people.

Large Attacking Pokemon

In an evenly split field full of these decks, this version of Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX would do pretty well. Out of these, the ones this deck would struggle with the most would be Turbo Dark, Rainbow Road, M Rayquaza EX and M Gardevoir EX. The ability of the first three to consistently two-shot and even one-shot Decidueye GX without needing to bench small 40-80 HP Pokémon is a big issue for this deck. While Seismitoad-EX has the ability to lock these decks out of the game early, they each have multiple large attackers, and this causes them to be more resilient to the plan of "item lock and place damage counters on the threats till there are no more threats and win." Yveltal can also be a pain, with Tauros GX being a near insurmountable threat against Seismitoad-EX without disruption, due to how long Seismitoad-EX needs to target it down, and Archeops can provide a ton of disruption on awkward draws.

Though this version of Seismitoad-EX/Decidueye GX does struggle with these top contenders, it has strongly favorable or favorable matchups against the rest of the decks listed. Though I cannot help but stand up for Trevenant’s ability to deal with the majority of the possible deck concepts in the game, Seismitoad-EX/Decidueye GX has a favorable to insane matchup against it, assuming it gets a single turn of items which happens more often than not. This is one of the biggest reasons to consider Seismitoad-EX/Decidueye GX over Seismitoad-EX/Crobat. Seismitoad-EX/Crobat has always struggled with being able to keep up with the damage output Trevenant provides, since Silent Fear has a similar effect to Quaking Punch over all, but the damage is placed on each of the opponent's Pokémon instead of just the active. Crobat was normally inconsistent with delivering the extra damage to Trevenant due to Forest Curse and an inability to evolve the bats for their ability.

Trevenant

Decidueye’s advantages over Crobat might seem meek given that each Decidueye GX in play cause Trevenant to put more damage into play, but the consistent allocation of extra damage can be troublesome for Trevenant. At Phillidelphia Regionals 2016, when I made top 16 with Trevenant, I had one match in particular where a Seismitoad EX/Crobat deck was drawing marvelously under item lock. In this match, he hit bats and Team Flare Grunts in a nearly perfect order, and it was the closest the matchup had ever played out in my experience, with him taking a game off me and whiffing on the last turn to lose the match. The one to two bats being played every turn, coupled with item lock, was super difficult to deal with as the Trev player. In fact, the turn he was able to knock out a Phantump on the bench with bats, and knock out the active Trevenant with Quaking Punch, created a board state nearly impossible to come back from. While this is rare with Seismitoad-EX/Crobat due to the inability to play the Golbat and Crobat early that leads to inconsistency under item lock, Decidueye GX is able to streamed from the first turn with the aid of Forest of Giant Plants. This allows for consistent aggression that Trevenant crumples to. This, combined with item lock and Decidueye GX being large enough to survive an abundance of Silent Fears, leads to Decidueye GX having the potential to overwhelm Trevenant by targeting down Phantump before they evolve, and Trevenant Break whenever needed. Decidueye GX’s ability is usually strong enough to beat Trevenant without ever using more than its GX attack if three come into play by the second turn.

Evolution Decks

Greninja, Eels, Flareon, Solgaleo GX/Bronzong, Accelgor/Wobb, and Night March all fall into the same category whenever playing against Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX. Each of these decks rely heavily on the usage of smaller Pokémon that need to evolve to lead to larger damage output. Decidueye GX’s Feather Arrow abuses this to the fullest extent, taking cheap knockouts before even being able to attack, and the high HP of Decidueye GX provides a large hurdle that is almost insurmountable for these decks' damage output as well. Quaking Punch also makes it hard to get started or be able to keep up due to their heavy item reliance.

And all the rest

Wailord seems like a solid matchup if the Decidueye GX player plays deliberately--only laying down Decidueye GX pieces, and waiting for a good moment to use the GX attack to get back VS Seekers for N towards the end of the game.

Sabeleye Garbodor is difficult if they ever manage to break the item lock, but an early Quaking Punch can put them out of the game, and if enough Decidueye are established before the Garbodor comes into play, the Decidueye player is able to target down Trubbish before they evolve and win the game through just using Feather Arrow.

Volcanion is also a favorable matchup for the deck, due to Seismitoad EX having weakness on both types of Volcanion. A Quaking Punch hitting for 100 is difficult for Volcanion to keep up with, even with any support Pokémon, but multiple Feather Arrows give Seismitoad EX the ability to clear the Volcanion player’s field of energy in a few turns, which mitigates explosive early turns or a Ranger, and this makes just 2 Seismitoad EX enough to deal with the match up consistently. Just one Seismitoad is rarely enough due to Volcanion consistently being able to use a large Volcanic Heat or drawing into a bunch of energy and attacking with multiple baby Volcanion. This advantage over Volcanion is the primary benefit of playing Seismitoad EX over other support Pokémon with Decidueye GX.

Skyfield Decks

With this list already having a strong standing in the meta as is, making the deck be able to surmount its bad matchups against some popular deck is well worth exploring. My favorite answer to Rayquaza and Ranbow Road with the deck is Enhanced Hammer and Team Flare Grunt under item lock. I am under the impression both of these decks are in a strong position to perform well. Rayquaza EX is an aggressive deck that has recently seen a resurgence in standard. With it seeing a large drop in some of its harder matchups, such as Night March, and potentially Trevenant, it’s well suited to see a resurgence in expanded as well. At Arizona Regionals, there was one player to pilot Metal Rayquaza to make top 16 after having never played the game competitively before, which shows the merit of playing this deck in a field now even more suited for it.

Rainbow Road, on the other hand, infested Philadelphia Regionals. It was observed to be an obvious counter to Dark decks, and solid enough to be competitive, while taking a loss to Trevenant. The last round of swiss in Philly bolstered four potential win-and-ins, with each match having a Trevenant player against any of three Dark decks or one Rainbow Road. In order for Trevenant to have done so well as to produce four separate win-and-ins, there had to be an abundance of strong matchups for the trees to feed on, and most of these fertilizing decks took the form of Rainbow Road. The reason that Trevenant boasts such a favorable matchup against Rainbow Road is that Trevenant decks are able to strip both energy off of the aggressor through Team Flare Grunt and Enhanced Hammer, and damage multiple targets at the same time. Seismitoad GX/Decidueye GX is able to accomplish the same goal with the same resources by targeting down just the threats that are able to attack, but it also has the ability to knock out threats quicker after the first energy is placed onto an attacker.

Metal M Rayquaza-EX decks can be harder to deal with from decks that rely on stripping energy, but Trevenant is able to remove the energy often enough from the active while targeting the Bronzong, that it is rare for Trevenant decks to lose control of the game after establishing early item locks. Seismitoad EX/Decidueye is able to mirror this as well, by targeting down low HP Bronzor before they evolve, and getting cheap knockouts while controlling the energy on M Rayquaza-EX to force them into passing.

List with Hammers

The list below allows for three-energy attackers that abuse special energy such as M Rayquaza-EX and Rainbow Road to be stripped of their energy well enough to win against these matchups consistently.

 

The major difference from this list and the last is the much slower rate of getting Decidueye GX into play. The introduction of Crushing Hammer, Enhanced Hammer, Xerosic, and Team Flare grunt are usually enough to slow down most decks to the point where aggression of early Feather Arrows is unnecessary. The possibility of early Decidueye is too strong to abandon entirely though, which is why three Forest of Giant Plants is still strong in the deck. One Team Skull Grunt can be used as a way of discarding Double Colorless Energy after a Sky Return, punishing Greninja after a Moonlight Slash, or discarding energy from decks that are forced to hold onto them due to low energy counts, such as Night March and Flareon. Two Crushing Hammer and two Team Flare Grunt are also included in the deck to help mitigate the explosive turns by Turbo Dark decks that only use basic energy and can threaten Seismitoad for one hit knock outs. The two Crushing Hammers also provide solid targets for Decidueye GX’s GX attack to get back.

Mirror Matches

These hammers also provide an edge in the mirror match that can be quite volatile. Seismitoad generally is only used to attack in the mirror in the hope of locking the opponent out entirely before they are able to set up. Quaking Punch rarely ends a game in the mirror because it usually happens after the first or second turn. Due to this, Decidueye GX’s Razor Leaf typically knocks out Seismitoad EX in one hit or deals high damage to opposing Decidueye GX. Whenever this happens, stripping the energy from the entire field can leave the Decidueye GX deck with energy in play with an advantage in damage output with Razor Leaf on top of multiple Feather Arrows. This typically leads to a consistent way to win the mirror, which would be a welcomed advantage when taking Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX into a field of many solid matchups.

Yveltal/Archeops

Hammers also aid in the archetype's ability to deal with Yveltal/Archeops. Yveltal has historically struggled with Seismitoad EX/Crobat, but if an Archeops hits the field, not having lasers can lead to low damage output that can make the matchup insurmountable. Hammers provide the potential for Seismitoad to lock Yveltal out of the game, making it so Yveltal can’t attack, and they can also provide time for being able to hit the combo of Hex Maniac with Decidueye GX pieces even when they are drawing energy. Energy control is also a much needed answer to Tauros GX. Due to Tauros GX typically using a Double Colorless Energy to attack, Enhanced Hammer and Quaking Punch can be used to hopefully prevent it from attacking while damage is accumulated on it. Needing particular energy drops such as Double Colorless Energy versus a Dark Energy can lead to opponents over extending and using supporters to discard precious energies that they need to finish out a game.

Evolution Decks

What this version of Seismitoad Ex/ Decidueye gains in control, it loses in aggression. Due to it having much less consistency cards for streaming early Decidueye, it loses some favorability against the decks that abuse low HP Pokémon by evolving them into energy engines or strong attackers. Fortunately, the deck still retains many of its outs to these decks. Night March and Flareon are incredibly susceptible to Quaking Punch, and with hammers, they can find it extremely difficult to stream attacks, so there is usually enough time to get Decidueye GX into play before they can win the game.

Energy Recyclers

Decks such as Eels and Solgaleo GX/Bronzong gain much more of an advantage since their energy engines are less susceptible to getting knocked out before evolving, and hammers are much less effective on them due to having abilities that retrieve and attach energy from the discard. Due to this, there is a much greater need to start attacking with Decidueye earlier in the matchups which can lead to some awkward situations that may not be favorable overall, such as not getting enough damage to knock out a Solgaleo GX until multiple are set up. Overall, the matchup gain in Rainbow Road, M Rayquaza, and Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX is greater than the loss of win rate against Eels and Solgaleo/Bronzong.

Turbo Darkrai

The biggest problem in this build comes from its inability to beat Turbo Dark decks with only basic energy. Turbo Dark is still too aggressive after strong starts, even if they don’t get an Yveltal XY attacking early, that Team Flare Grunt and one or two positive Crushing Hammer flips rarely change the outcome of the game. In order to accommodate this matchup, while keeping the benefits of the other matchup changes, the Crushing Hammers could be cut for Super Scoop Ups, and Computer Search could be cut for Scoop Up Cyclone for extra spice. These cards provide extra aggression early on, but overall, the strength gained from Super Scoop Up and Scoop Up Cyclone against Turbo Dark are reflected negatively against Yveltal/Archeops where Crushing Hammers and Computer Search can be invaluable ways to get around Tauros GX and Archeops.

Item Lock/Ability Lock

The following list provides a different take on Seimitoad-EX/Decidueye GX that is reminiscent of current Seimitod-EX/Crobat Builds. This version of Decidueye elects to forsake its ability to get turn one or two Feather Arrows for the sake of locking basic’s abilities and the ability to put opposing Pokémon to sleep. The most interesting change about this list from the others is the inclusion of one Espeon-EX. While this card has seemed underwhelming in the past to say the least, it does add some versatility to this deck that attempts to lock opponents out of the game for the most part.

In the mirror, the deck attempts to stream Decidueye GX lines in order to be more aggressive than its opponent, as well as use energy disruption to prevent the usage of Razor Leaf, and it sometimes attempts to lock the opponent out of the game through early Quaking Punch. Espeon-EX provides one further option for winning the mirror in this list by devolving high HP Decidueye GX into lowly 80 HP Dartrix that can be knocked out relatively quickly. The option of devolving the opponent’s Pokémon from Dartrix to Rowlet late game can also prevent them making more Decidueye GX if this version of the deck manages to get rid of all of the opponent’s Forest of Giant Plants (from Silent Lab and Delinquent).

An extra Revitalizer is put into this list because of the tendency to discard more Decidueye pieces with Professor Juniper, Computer Search, and Ultra Ball due to the lack of Exeggcute and the inability to get around the evolution rules without Forest of Giant Plants. The Seismitoad EX and Float Stone count of this version were upped by one due to the necessity for this version to get a turn one Quaking Punch to be successful with the lack of aggression that losing Forest of Giant Plants takes away. One Super Rod was included along with the increased Revitalizer count due to the need to be aggressive and discard resources such as grass energy early in order to get the early Quaking Punch. The one less Decidueye GX is due to the lack of ability the deck has to stream multiple Decidueye early from no Forrest of Giant Plants, but one Revitalizer would be an easy cut for the fourth Decidueye GX. The Fighting Fury Belts are present in the deck due to needing Seismitoad EX to survive longer to get the necessary damage into play to win without turn one or two Decidueye GX. Hex Maniac was kept in the list explicitly for the mirror since one turn would no longer be enough to evolve a Rowlet into a Decidueye GX, and it would be cuttable for some sort of healing card such as Max Potion or Pokémon Center Lady.

 

This list has the potential to have a strong Turbo Dark matchup if active Dark Pulse Darkrai EX can stay asleep for a turn or two. The idea behind using Hypnotoxic Laser and Espeon EX over all is to slow down the opponent enough to provide a few free turns after many Decidueye GX have been set up to net more Feather Arrows overall than having one or two early Decidueye GX would provide. This list is much more consistent than the hammers version above, but the lacking aggression can lead to it getting run over by aggressive decks including Flareon, Rainbow Road, and Rayquaza if the Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX deck misses Silent Lab or Quaking Punch Early and these decks are able to take off. While this version is more susceptible to early aggression, when it’s able to establish Quaking Punch and Silent Lab on the first turn, it will usually end up winning the game due to the opponent’s probable inability to draw out of it.  The Ghetsis in this version is much stronger than it would be in the others from the higher chance of Quaking Punch. Either it can be used early to prevent the explosive start it struggles against, or it can be used late after the opponent has been item locked to draw into necessary cards such as energy, Revitalizer, and Hypnotoxic Laser. This version has the worst Trevenant, Night March, and Flareon matchups of the versions listed, but Trevenant is the only one that gains a strict advantage over this version due to Silent Labs being able to be bumped easily Hypnotoxic Lasers being less impactful after item lock is broken than Crushing Hammer or Enhanced Hammer.

Decidueye GX with Supporter Lock

This version of Decidueye GX lock supporters instead of items for the tradeoff of an overall smaller damage output and taking a hard loss to Volcanion and turn 1 Archeops. This version opts to forsake these matchups by not even running a Hex Maniac due to the very small amount the card would even help in scenarios against aggressive fire decks with a lot of non-supporter draw options and an ability that prevents evolving due to everything in the deck needing to evolve to be effective on the field. If Exeggcutor is not on the field prior to Archeops, there isn’t a way to lock the opponent until the end is near perfect to Hex and put multiple Decidueye GX into play. Instead, this decks ability to lock supporters, which are the most effective way at gaining card advantage, and lessen the opponents hand size through Delinquent and Ghetsis create scenarios with card advantage that provides Exeggcutor longer periods of time to dedicate Feather Arrow Damage and win games.

Card advantage is a term referred to in magic a lot when a player has more cards in their hand than their opponent, and, therefore, more options in a game. A term like card advantage is less applicable to Pokémon due to cards like Professor Juniper, Shaymin EX, and Colress existing which can make having one card provide a larger card advantage. Due to these cards existing and Blockade preventing most of them, Exeggcutor can create insane amounts of card advantage from using Colress and Juniper to hit multiple Hypnotoxic Laser, Decidueye GX, Energy, Crushing Hammer, Xerosic, and AZ to create even further unfair board states. The deck can also force opponents into awkward positions with Delinquent from 4 to 1 due to having to decide to keep a supporter incase the Exeggutor deck decides to attack with Razor Leaf or Stomp or keeping something like an energy to maintain actions that increase their board presence under Blockade.

The strength of Exeggutor/Decidueye GX comes in that it will not be hard countered by the field, it has good enough matchups in the field, and the surprise factor of playing against it for people who are not used to playing against this more rogue deck. The Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX matchup is very awkward due to the low HP of Exeggcutor and the lack of Hex Maniac to buy turns, but it is winnable with being a relatively consistent Decidueye GX list that can create early aggression. Exeggutor is also arguably better than Seismitoad EX in the matchup since Supporters are more necessary than items in lists that only run one or two Shaymin EX, and Exeggcutor forces Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX on odd prizes if they don’t knock out an Exeggcute, Rowlet, or Dartrix before the Exeggcutor deck gets a turn. The weakness Exeggcutor has on Seismitoad EX can also be beneficial by speeding up the game and lessening the time under item lock, and cards like Crushing Hammer, Xerosic, and Hypnotoxic Laser each act as threats to prevent or stop Decidueye GX from using Razor Leaf mid to late game.

Overall, the matchup tends to be pretty 50/50 in my experience with the person going first having the advantage. Decks like Rainbow Road and Rayquaza can also be awkward matchups. Ho-Oh bringing energy out of the discard and not being able to stop energy switch can be a big issue coupled with the ability to play 2-3 Shaymin EX to gain card advantage can be very scary. Exeggutor shuts off Lysandre though, so against decks that don’t inhibit the items stream, it’s realistic to make them take three prizes on Exeggutor which provides plenty of time to knockout 2-3 Rainbow Road Xerneas through Hypnotoxic Laser and inhibiting correct energy drops such as the Double Colorless or required Fairy Energy with Xerosic and Crushing Hammer. Also, Rainbow Road without supporters tends to play into Delinquent relatively easily, which can set up turns where it’s safe to take quick knockouts with a Razor Leaf. M Rayquaza can be harder to deal with due to having more access to Shaymin EX, but without Bronzong, the energy can still be removed at high enough rate to make the matchup manageable.

The deck probably has a stronger Turbo Dark matchup by forcing them onto awkward prizes and removing their steam with Delinquent, but it’s still not favorable overall. Turbo Dark puts way too much energy into play before Blockade to deal with most of the time, and the Yveltal XY’s attack can lead to insurmountable board states for Exeggutor Decidueye to deal with the decks overall low damage output without getting lucky on sleep flips.

Decks with small, set up Pokémon still prove to be favorable matchups, and the three prizes that they normally have to take on Exeggutor can generally slow down games enough to make up for slow starts without early Decidueye GX. Each matchup that was decided by Decidueye alone being too strong such as Greninja and Groudon is maintained from Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX. Tauros GX can be an easier wall due to removing its energy without allowing the opponent to play supporters to hit more energy, but decks like Yveltal that would play Tauros GX and Archeops can be very turn one dependent. Exeggutor/Decidueye GX could be considered to be over Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX whenever players are worried about Seismitoad EX/Decidueye GX’s polarizing matchups, when they aren’t scared of playing against Volcanion, less worried about playing against Archeops, and would like to play something that not the entire field is expecting.

The Donk Version

Latios EX Donk is a deck that has success that is highly dependent on its build. Overall the concept is relatively bad since its strength is in pouring all of its resource into the first few turns of the game, and the majority of its ability to succeed in the few first turns punishes it on opening bad hands. This Latios EX donk deck is degenerate. As of this build its damage output on turn one is capped at 40 (the attack itself) + 20 (Muscle Band) + 80 (4 Decidueye) + 20 (Kukui) + 80 (4 Devolution Spray) + avr 40 (Super Scoop Up) + 10 (Hypnotoxic Laser) + 10 (Plus Power) + 20 (Scoop Up Cyclone) = 340 damage on Turn 1!

This crazy damage output is slightly offset by having a poor late game, but 50% of the time, if this deck hits the nuts, it will win the game. Even if the deck misses the energy turn one, it has the ability to hit for 230 without even having Latios EX’s attack just by hitting all of the possible cards for adding damage, and this can lead to knocking out a 2 Shaymin EX that are started with out of fear of being donked. This answers the question about how it’s better than fortress, since the abilities of Decidueye GX can knockout a lone EX. As for late game, Latios EX’s has as good of a late game as it has had since Lysandre’s Trump Card by having access to Feather Arrow, the ability to use its second attack, heal cards, and a bonkers GX attack that can be used to augment its damage after expending resources on turn 1. With just how crazy drawing the nuts can be with this deck and how little people can prepare for this deck other than playing multiple Wobbuffet that are liabilities in almost every other matchup, this deck is definitely worth considering for St. Louis. The list included ends up being fairly inconsistent overall due to including all of the resources to deal 340 damage, and almost all of the Super Scoop Up and Scoop Up Cyclone are used on Shaymin.

Matchups are pretty simple, the more HP starters have and the more likely the player is to have multiple starters, the harder the matchup is. Most of the following statements discuss the theory behind the deck rather than this list's ability to actually accomplish what it wants to do. Turbo Dark can be easier if they don’t start two EX’s, but the matchup is definitely better than what each of the other Decidueye decks have from the early aggression being able to match and overcome Turbo Dark’s aggression. Yveltal is not very favorable due Tauros GX being a huge hurdle for the deck to overcome.

Trevenant is an auto win going first if they don’t start Wobbuffet. Seismitoad EX/Crobat is incredibly easy to donk if they don’t start one of their three Seismitoad EX. Groudon will most likely go to late game and end up in a loss due to their ability to Hex when they attack with Primal Groudon EX and start Wobbuffet, but it is kind of winnable when they don’t start Wobbuffet.

Greninja is an auto win going first unless the Latios Donk bricks. Night March needs to start three separate Pokémon to withstand the average turn 1 of Latios Donk. Flareon plays out the same as the Night March matchup. Wailord is actually deniable now, though it will happen almost never, and it takes demands a lot more to do so, but Decidueye GX’s abilities can be enough to win the game past turn one. Sableye is an auto win going first.

Rainbow Road, Rayquaza, Gardevoir, Volcanion, Blastoise, and Zygarde are all basically auto losses unless the deck hits the coconuts. Accelgor/Wobb is an auto win if they start anything but a Wobbuffet, and probably an auto loss if they do start it. Eels is almost as solid as night march, but Latios EX can lose if the matchup goes to late game as well. Solgaleo Bronzong will probably lose if they don’t start Aegislash.

M Manectric is donkable and able to be beat in late game. Decidueye has a large chance of being donked and the extra aggression early can make the matchup better in late game. Lurantis GX is an easier to donk matchup and can be easier late game depending on the build. Plume Box fine enough with just pressure from Decidueye GX having the ability win the game with just the damage counters alone if enough are put into play turn 1. This could be considered to be a viable play for St. Louis if someone doesn’t like long games that can be thought intensive and prefers polarized matchups. Feel free to post better lists in the comments if you create one!

Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed this in depth look at Decidueye GX and some of its potential partners. All of the images in this article are from Zero Chan members Chibiterasu-chan and IChigo Kurosaki.

[+16] okko


 

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