Experts' corner

Alec Geissler

The Goonies - Modern Era

Alec goes over Galarian Obstagoon, a rogue deck that has a lot of potential in the current basic heavy format while being able to take down the VMAX decks.

05/29/2020 by Alec Geissler

Hey Everyone!

Hey everyone! I hope everyone is doing well and staying safe. I hope you all had a decent run during Limitless Qualifier 3. Congratulations to everyone who managed to pull out a day two finish and made it to Top 8. I had planned on playing in Qualifier 3, but my sleep schedule has been so messed up to the point where I had not been able to stay awake for it. I didn't do much testing with my deck before the event, but I have been putting in a ton of games with this deck and plan on playing it if I manage to fix my sleep schedule for Qualifier 4. By the cheesy title, you can see that it is Goons. I was told about Goons the night before Qualifier 3 and I couldn't turn the deck down, even though it is a stage 2 and seems very clunky. Obstruct was too overpowered in my eyes to turn down even with the potential consistency/clunk issues. The abilities of Galarian Zigzagoon/Obstagoon are just bonus factors apart from the shining aspect of Obstruct. Being able to shut down a majority of the format by just stating an attack is absurd. With the addition of Scoop Up Net, it allows you to clear your bench to be able to completely shut out your opponent if they don't play ant evolution outs/Ultra Forest Kartenvoy in Baby Blacephalon. The abilities on Galarian Zigzagoon/Obstagoon set up some crazy plays with Yveltal GX and Sableye V to be able to take quick KO's for big prizes on VMAX's or Tag Teams. VMAX decks with 320+HP that aren't named Dragapult VMAX can be a problem, and these two can shine in those matchups. Let's dive into the list to show you guys how to take those big beefy decks down.

Galarian Obstagoon "Goons"

Pokémon - 16

* 4 Jirachi TEU 99
* 4 Galarian Zigzagoon SSH 117
* 1 Galarian Linoone SSH 118
* 4 Galarian Obstagoon SSH 119
* 1 Sableye V SSH 120
* 1 Yveltal-GX FLI 79
* 1 Mew UNB 76

Trainer Cards - 36

* 4 Professor's Research
* 4 Quick Ball
* 4 Rare Candy
* 4 Scoop Up Net
* 4 Switch
* 3 Marnie
* 3 Pokémon Communication
* 3 Rosa
* 1 Counter Gain
* 1 Energy Spinner
* 1 Energy Switch
* 1 Escape Board
* 1 Evolution Incense
* 1 Great Catcher
* 1 Ordinary Rod

Energy - 8

* 8 Darkness Energy


I like the list currently, as is. I haven't thought about any changes except for maybe a Boss's Orders, but you want to try and draw every turn instead of using a supporter to gust. I have been toying with the idea of adding Oranguru UPR/Virizion-GX into the deck for the Mill/Control matchup since the primary way you want to take prizes is by taking all six at once. Virizion-GX allows you to pick up all of your Pokemon at once paired with Oranguru, allowing you to resource management - Rare Candies and Scoop Up Net's/Ordinary Rod's. Stacking your opponent's Pokemon up with the damage from abilities and then spreading with Psypower is the game plan. Let's jump ahead into some of the card inclusions we have to make some matchups not so bad as they seem.

Sableye V

Sableye V is the main reason why we can take down the VMAX decks that have that beefy 320+ HP with the Crazy Claws attack. Crazy Claws does 10+60 for each damage counter on your opponent's active Pokemon, which you can set up with Galarian Zigzagoon/Galarian Obstagoon's abilities—being able to do pull out a crazy attack for 310 damage with setting up five damage counters which total up for 360 damage. It's astonishing how fast you can set up these big knockouts in the short of a matter of time it takes. While the attack is two dark, which typically means two attachments, we do play energy switch, which is how we can set it up in one turn. Sableye is usually the second knockout we try and set up for when we are playing against the VMAX decks such as Dragapult, Inteleon, and Rillaboom (obviously, there are many more).

Yveltal GX

Yveltal-GX is the partner to Sableye that gives us the advantage towards the VMAX decks. Doom Count GX is insane considering how easy it is to set up four damage counters with this deck. Scoop Up Net was one of the reasons how this attack was able to be set up so easily. You only need a rare candy, Obstagoon, and a Zigzagoon or in any combination of Zigzagoon and Scoop Up Net's to get four down. Against the VMAX decks, you have to wait for them to evolve into the VMAX for the GX to get the max effect. What's nice is that before they develop, you're typically Obstructing, which means their essential V's are useless. This is the first piece of the puzzle to take down the VMAX decks. As weird as it is, Absorb Vitality is a valid attack in the Dragapult after the Doom Count GX to deal 40 damage on the next Dragapult to setup the damage for the Sableye play to eliminate the need for the candy Obstagoon combo.

Energy Switch

Energy Switch was mentioned above in the Sableye section because that's where it is mainly used. You can use this card as needed, really, but the first time you use it is when you're playing versus VMAX decks, and you need to setup Sableye in one turn. Against Dragapult with Sableye V's first attack, you're able to pull the combo off twice, which is an insane swing factor in the matchup for us.

There aren't too many obscure cards to go over in this deck, but now that we went in-depth about the cool combo's/cards that make the deck a powerhouse in some scary matchups, let's talk about the matchup spread. As a heads up, alot of matchups would be the same explanation, so I'm going to go over the decks that have potential techs for the matchup and how you can overcome them.


Pikarom - Very Favored, however, can be tough as well

I would like to consider PikaRom an auto-win because technically it is; yet, at the same time, the matchup can be terrifying if the Pika player plays perfectly and you miss one turn. What I mean by that is Raichu & Alolan Raichu-GX is the main reason why the matchup is as shaky as it is due to Tandem Shock. Being able to paralyze your lone Goon puts you in a precarious situation since you have to draw another Pokemon, switch, and Scoop Up Net to keep the Obstruct lock intact. At the same time, the Pika player needs to play correctly because even though their "only out" is Tandem Shock, we can take six prizes quick with Yveltal and Sableye V. I would consider this matchup very good for us, but keep your eye out for Raichu & Alolan Raichu. Two more things that Pika could tech in is Jolteon GX, which is very scary, but it's nothing that we can't overcome. They can only take two knockouts total with it while we keep trading Obstruct hits. If they do play Jolteon GX, you try and set up multiple Goons and Mew to prevent the Tag Bolt and not care about Boss's Orders. Swift Run GX doesn't even do anything since it only hits for 110, which is the same damage output as their second attack. The one-off turn doesn't allow them to take any other knockouts without electropowers either. Eelektross is another card that has seen play in the past to get around the basic lock Vileplume. Still, it isn't horrifying since we can candy Goon, then triple Zigzagoon with a combination of Scoop Up Net's into Obstruct and knock off four energy on their board while keeping the primary lock. I don't see their tech options being crazy viable, but they are outs to Obstruct that should be duly noted.


This is another matchup that I feel is very easy assuming you can pull off the lone Goon/Obstruct play, but ADP/Zacian can play Mawile GX, which is very scary assuming you can't get rid of your basic Pokemon from your hand. Most lists currently don't play Mawile-GX, but we have seen it appear in many records before and wouldn't be surprised to see it again. Mawile being able to put down as many basic Pokemon from our hand to our bench by our opponent's choice is scary because they can put one Pokemon down, Phione and then Boss's Orders to bring our Obstagoon they just Phione'd to the bench back up to the active forgoing the previous Obstruct effect since it hit the bench. While Mawile can put as many Pokemon down from your hand, you should be able to thin all the Pokemon from your hand and not allow it to bench any. It isn't that hard to work around if you know they play it; it's the surprise factor that makes the card a scary threat. If they don't play Mawile, you have nothing to be afraid of, and the matchup is incredibly free, assuming they don't play any other weird jank like Galarian Perserrker or something like that. 

Dragapult VMAX - Favored (very draw dependent)

Dragapult is one of the easiest matchups for this deck assuming that you draw well, even with the fact that they have an evolution out of Obstruct lock. The dark weakness on Dragapult sets up some straightforward plays for Sableye V to get set up quickly. Sableye V is absurd in the matchup since it only takes three damage counters for Sableye to knockout Dragapult VMAX. The gameplan versus Dragapult is the same as we have versus all the VMAX decks which are Yveltal into Sableye V. What's nice is that if you prize Sableye V. They don't have double Horror Energy/Giant Bomb to put that many damage counters on the Sableye, you can use Sableye's first attack to get the Energy Switch back to set up the second Sableye V knockout. Like all other VMAX matchups, Yveltal and Sableye V are the two MVPs of this matchup.


In conclusion, I think that Galarian Obstagoon has serious potential in the upcoming qualifier four formats. I don't see any downsides to this deck besides the small consistency issues you have some games of setting up. Apart from that, the deck brings a crazy amount of damage output that also blocks your opponent from attacking. Aside from the terrible Mill/Control matchup, I think this deck has 100% of a chance in every matchup. Inteleon VMAX is a very shaky matchup because of the 60 damage snipe to the bench, but we play Mew, which is a vast matchup swinger. I would highly recommend you test Goons, and if you don't like the deck, make sure you play against it to make sure your techs for the matchup work. You don't want to auto lose because you built your deck correctly. Like I mentioned earlier, you could tech for the mill matchup with Oranguru UPR/Virizion-GX, and it makes the matchup semi-more winnable. It goes from no chance at all to gives you somewhat of an opportunity. Thank you so much for reading this article! I'm glad to bring you guys all the weird decks that I do since everyone else does all the vanilla stuff, which is no disrespect towards them at all. I like being the person to be out of the ordinary and share some "rogue" decks or decks that aren't as popular in the meta as they are. If you guys enjoy my content, please drop a donation below! All donations are appreciated. Thank you guys, and good luck with Qualifier 4! I hope you all do well and stay safe!

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