Hello to all. I am Rodrigo, bringing news about Pokemon TCG and its vast content. With the return of a few decks to Expanded, I will talk about a great "Single Prize" in its essence water attacks deck. For you all, Gyarados Energy Explosion from the Sun/Moon: Team Up set.
So, let's analyze this deck and understand how it works.
Gyarados: Energy Blast
Gyarados and Magikarp
1) Attack - Distilled Blast (W): you discard the seven cards on the top of your deck. For each water energy discarded this way, you deal 30 damage for each card. These energies will go back into the deck after the effect, and the ones that aren't, are discarded definitely.
2) Attack - Hyper Beam (W)(W)(W): you deal 100 damage and discard one energy from the opponent's active Pokemon.
Basically, the setup is to always use the first attack, which is the deck's focus. Here we could include in this list some support card to amplify Gyarado's damage, be it Choice Belt BRS 135 to go against V Pokemon in general or Choice Band GRI 121 to go against EX or GX Pokemon - but it is very risky for game start, as energy discards can not be enough to deal a precise and high damage, this way being much more effective for late game and end game, when the deck will be properly filtered to have only energies left and deal massive damage.
Another point which is an advantage against "sniper" decks is Magikarp's ability, Submersed, in which it, if it's benched, prevents damages (both yours and your opponents'). Basically, it is like Manaphy BRS 41 built in, which frees up space for other cards in your deck and preserves other Magikarp, so they can evolve in the following turn.
Good Hands to Start Out With
Here in this case, be the second to go, as you can put Magikarp on front and Phione on the bench, and to hold your hand, keep Dive Ball to look for Lumineon-V so you can use Judge in the following turn and try to risk using it to look for Radiant Greninja to use its card draw ability for the discarded energy in your hand.
Here you don't have to think twice. Choosing to go first, put Magikarp in the active position and then use Repeat Ball to look for another Magikarp, and in that, equip Lucky Egg onto Magikarp in case it is knocked out, and you'll draw seven cards in the following turn. All that's left is Dive Ball in hand and Gyarados, and next turn, evolve both at the same time, and you can use Judge to sabotage your opponent's hand and draw cards to yourself at the same time, as the card draw reduction could be a bit slow as you don't count with Professor's Research.
- Radiant Greninja ASR 46 comes in with its ability Concealed Cards, which makes you discard one energy card from your hand to draw two cards from the top of your deck.
- Phione CEC 57 comes in with its Whirlpool Suction ability, in which if it is on your bench, you make your opponent choose a benched Pokemon to be promoted into the active position, and in that, Phione comes back into the deck; however, it is put as the last card in the bottom of the deck.
It is basically "almost" similar to a type of Boss's Orders applied to it.
- Pyukumuku FST 77 comes in with its ability Pitch a Pyukumuku, in which, if it's in your hand, you reveal it and place it on the bottom of your deck as your last card, so you can draw the top card of your deck, but you can't do this ability effect more than once per turn.
- Lumineon V BRS 40 has its Luminous Sign ability, which, if summoned from your hand and put on your bench, searches for a Supporter card in your deck. It is practically what Tapu Lele-GX CEL 60 used to do in the Sun/Moon era and Jirachi-EX PLB 60 used to do in the Black/White era, only for the water archetype, besides being a "temporary attacker" with Aqua Return, for one water energy and two colorless ones, dealing 120 damage and it and all cards connected to it come back into your deck, preserving it in case of a possible enemy target action (depending on the case).
- Irida ASR 147 is useful to look for a water Pokemon and a Trainer card of the Item type in your deck.
- Judge FST 235 is useful to shuffle your hand and the opponent's back into the deck, and afterward each one will draw up to 4 cards.
- Raihan EVS 152 can only be used in case one of your Pokemon was knocked out in the previous turn. You connect a basic energy from the discard pile to one of your Pokemon and look in your deck for any card you'd like and put it in your hand.
- Bruno BST 121 is useful as a flexible card draw - you shuffle your hand and draw up to four cards. But, if in the previous turn, if any of your Pokemon was knocked out, instead of having the same effect of drawing four cards, you shuffle your hands and draw seven cards.
- Crasher Wake FLI 104 is useful to search your deck, but with a required tax of discarding two water energy cards from your hand to do it. By paying this tax, you look for any two cards you want in your deck and put them directly onto your hand.
- Dive Ball PRC 125 is useful to look for a water type Pokemon in your deck, and afterward reveal it and place it in your hand.
While searching, this card doesn't determine if you only get basic Pokemon or an evolution, so regardless of that, it will search for everyone, as long as it fulfills the requirement of being a water type.
- Repeat Ball PRC 136 is useful to search for a Pokemon of the same name in the game.
In this search, this card is useful to look for as many Magikarp as you possibly can in your deck and put them into your bench as quickly as possible.
- Capacious Bucket RCL 156 is useful to look in your deck for two water energies and place them in your hand.
- Trainers' Mail ROS 92 is an item card that allows you to search the four cards in the top of your deck for any Trainer card, choose one of them, reveal it to your opponent and place it in your hand, and afterward, shuffle your deck.
- Rescue Stretcher GRI 130 is useful to pick one of these two options:
1) You can get a Pokemon from the discard pile and place it directly on your hand;
2) You recycle three Pokemon from your discard pile and puts them back into your deck.
- Lucky Egg SSH 167 is useful as a Tool to equip in one of your Pokemon, which is good as a card draw engine because if this Pokemon is knocked out while equipped with this tool, it activates its "Draw Power" effect, and the player would be able to draw cards until they have seven cards in total in their hands.
The deck's advantage is because it has a simple strategy, and as it is a "Single Prize" deck, it can hit head on against many ultra rare decks that there are in Expanded and for just one energy, it can deal overwhelming damage, up to 210 damage for just one energy. Virtually we have 13 energies, with the possibility of working with 360 damage within the deck's potential, and we can also pull the opponent with Boss's Orders RCL 154, and this way knockout against VMax, Tag Team GX Pokemon and many others that offer up a lot of prize cards.
And just by its archetype alone, it is kind of obvious it has a clear advantage against fire types.
- Control decks such as Mewtwo-VUnion, such as for instance this one you can check out in this article.
- Mew VMAX FST 114 decks that can use all of their diverse attacks to provide versatility to strategies such as Mew-V's attack which hits for 70 and come back into the deck, for instance, and can be even worse with Meloetta as a "Single Prize" attacker.
- Aggressive decks with blunt and fast damage outputs and that have a lot of health to the point of being able to handle Gyarados damage output, that is, they can take 210, to be more specific, decks such as Togekiss VMAX VIV 141, which can stall turns, heal with Max Potion GRI 128 and hit fast with Double Colorless Energy SUM 136.
- Decks that have Arceus & Dialga & Palkia-GX CEC 156 using their GX attack to provide additional prizes to each knockout against your Gyarados.
- Hand control decks or deck control decks.
- "Deck Out" strategies deck, such as Centiskorch, such as this one.
- Decks that have Lunatone and Solrock (from Pokemon Go), when they go first and therefore take the initiative advantage.
- Electric archetype decks
It is a very aggressive deck for just one energy, and it is very nice to scare "Single Prize" decks that are slow and as time goes on your setup grows alongside your game, and you're able to already answer rare cards, such as GX, Tag Team GX, V, VStar, VMax and some VUnion (Greninja and Zacian, particularly).
It's worth the investment and though Gyarados and Radiant Greninja are possibly the most expensive cards in the whole deck, it's worth it to play casually among friends and also in some Expanded tournaments.
So? Did you like this deck? Would you do it differently? What do you think could change to improve it? And if you've already played, what was your experience? Your comments are always welcomed.
See you in the next article.
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