Hello to all. I'm Rodrigo, bringing news about Pokémon TCG.
We've had a rising appreciation of Shadow Rider Calyrex VMax in Expanded, which conquered a lot of space due to its constant charging thanks to its ability, and because it promotes other psychic attackers in the format.
That being said, let's untangle the Shadow Rider Calyrex VMax Control deck, which uses Gengar/Mimikyu Tag Team, Trevenant/Dusknoir Tag Team and works with enemy Ability Lock!
Shadow Rider Calyrex VMax + Tag Teams + Ability Lock
Shadow Rider Calyrex: The Deck's Main Charging and Attack Engine
Shadow Rider Calyrex-V
1) Attack - Shadow Mist (P): deals 10 damage and in the next round, the opponent can't play special energies or stadiums from their hand.
2) Attack - Astral Barrage (C)(C)(C): you choose two benched enemy Pokémon and place 5 damage counters on each of them.
Here there are many advantages to its basic form, as the first attack is excellent to have control against the use of special energies and stadiums, preventing preemptively opponent plays. For instance, it is very common for Arceus & Dialga & Palkia-GX CEC 156 and Regidrago VSTAR SIT 136 decks to appear, which use and abuse Double Dragon Energy ROS 97 energies and stadiums such as Stormy Mountains EVS 161.
Another deck you could sabotage is Honchkrow-GX UNB 109's deck, which uses Double Colorless Energy SUM 136 energies and the stadium Silent Lab PRC 140.
It is also common for Mewtwo & Mew-GX UNM 71 decks to appear, which can use many special energies, such as Prism Energy NXD 93 or Aurora Energy SSH 186 and uses the stadium Chaotic Swell CEC 187 because you can prevent Mewtwo & Mew-GX UNM 71's ability of copying GX and EX Pokémon's from the discard pile attacks because in case you play Silent Lab PRC 140, the deck's strategy is over.
Finally, the second attack is to ping some damages that can help in the future closing out some specific Knock Outs, and 50 damage is a lot to throw away.
Shadow Rider Calyrex VMax
Here there are no secrets: the second attack is the focus, so you can hit harder for each psychic energy attached to it as an attacker alternative, as in this deck there are others that may fulfill different tasks with various effects.
And its ability is extremely useful for charging "draw power" at the same time, which needs no comments and is always welcome.
Gengar & Mimikyu Tag Team-GX: The Attacker that Brings In the Terror
Though it is a low HP Pokémon, only 240, and it risks you losing 3 Prize cards as it is a Tag Team, it is useful as a "Start Game" to "Mid Game" Pokémon.
Its goal is to lock down your opponent, so they can't play anything regarding their GX attack, and then use its normal attack of 50 damage for each Trainer card in the opponent's hand. Supposing they have 6 Trainer cards, they'll be taking 300 damage for free for just two energies! And that only gets better if you can fulfill its full GX attack effect.
Trevenant & Dusknoir Tag Team-GX: The Hand Control Attacker
The first attacker needs no introduction, as it controls the opponent hand. It also serves as a secondary attacker to "Mid Game" and "Late Game", in case you want to sabotage your opponent, and to have dynamic charging, Shadow Rider Calyrex VMaxs need to be ready.
Lunala Prism Star
You'll hardly use the first attack due to its low HP and how easy it is to be Knocked Out as a target.
But your advantage is its last attack, which can reach massive damages when it comes to the matter of Shadow Rider Calyrex VMax's charging, and even depending on the number of energies your opponent will place, which makes it an excellent "Single Prize" attacker.
Secondary Recursive Pokémon
- Alolan Muk SUM 58 has Power of Alchemy, which disables abilities from any of both players' basic Pokémons, be them in play, the discard pile or in hand.
- Tapu Lele-GX CEL 60 has Wonder Tag, which looks for a Supporter card from your deck and places it in your hand if you summoned it from your hand into the bench.
Besides good support, it might be an attacker with its attack Energy Drive, which deals damage equal to 20 times the number of energies attached to it and the opponent's Pokémon, which is something quite useful and flexible, considering this Pokémon has no weaknesses.
- Professor Juniper PLB 84 is useful to discard your hand and draw 7 new cards to it.
- Marnie CPA 56 is a sabotage tactic to mess with the opponent's hand in case they have a handful of cards, so you'll have more possibilities of plays and resource.
- N NVI 92 is useful to shuffle your opponent's and your own hand and you both draw new cards by the amount of Prize Cards left for each player.
Supposing you are losing the game, and the opponent has one Prize Card left to win the game, and you have 5 Prize Cards left, you use this card and then, your opponent will shuffle their hand and get only one card back, and you'll shuffle yours and get 5 cards back.
However, it is also a double-edged sword because if you both have one Card Prize card left to win the match, and you play this card, both only get one card when you play N NVI 92.
- Roxanne ASR 150 is an enhanced "N" and is more destructive: if your opponent only has 3 Prize Cards left to win the game, you can play this card. By playing it, your opponent shuffles their hand and draws only 2 cards, and you shuffle your hand and draw 6 cards - which I think it is a safer play and more controlled than N NVI 92.
- Adventurer's Discovery FST 224 is useful to look for 3 V Pokémon in your deck and place them in your hand.
It is precisely essential to set up 3 Shadow Rider Calyrex V CRE 74 and/or Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX CRE 75 as quickly as possible.
- Guzma BUS 115 is useful to force a benched Pokémon into the Active position, and then, you do the same trade with your benched Pokémon to the Active position.
It is a kind of "Boss's Orders" more focused on catching an opponent Pokémon off guard.
- Acerola BUS 112 is useful to retreat a Pokémon to your hand, fully healing it from all the damage it took, but, on the other side, everything connected to it (energies or tools) go back into your hand.
- Fog Crystal CRE 140 is an Item that searches for a basic Pokémon of the psychic type or a basic psychic energy from your deck and places it in your hand.
- Mysterious Treasure FLI 113 is an Item card that states you need to discard a card from your hand to play it: if you do, you search for a dragon or psychic Pokémon in your deck and place it in your hand.
It is obvious your search is for psychic Pokémon.
- Trainers' Mail ROS 92 is an Item that is useful to look at the Top 4 cards in your deck and look for any Trainer type card (be it Supporter, Item, Tool or Stadium) and place it in your hand. The rest go back to the top of deck and then shuffle them inside the deck.
- VS Seeker PHF 109 can retrieve key cards, such as Guzma BUS 115, N NVI 92 and Roxanne ASR 150.
- Pal Pad SSH 172 makes you recycle from the discard pile up to 2 Trainer Supporter cards back to the deck.
- Super Rod BKT 149 can choose a combination of 3 cards between Pokémon and basic energy from the discard pile to go back into your deck.
- Energy Recycler BST 124 is useful to return up to 5 basic energy from the discard pile back into the deck.
- Field Blower GRI 125 is a resource through which you can choose a combination of two Tool and/or Stadium cards to discard in play.
- Float Stone PLF 99 is a Tool that grants free retreat cost to the Pokémon it is attached to.
- Computer Search BCR 137 is an ACE SPEC (a special card that you can only have one copy of in the whole deck), through which you discard two cards from your hand to search for any card you want in your deck and place it in your hand.
Silent Lab PRC 140 is useful to lock down all basic Pokémon's abilities in play (both yours and the opponent's), being essential to lock down recursive Pokémon which are quite common in the Expanded format, such as Oricorio-GX CEC 95, Dedenne-GX UNB 57, Jirachi-EX PLB 60, Lumineon V BRS 40, Tapu Lele-GX GRI 60, Eldegoss V RCL 19 and Crobat V DAA 104.
Besides "Single Prize" Pokémon such as Radiant Greninja ASR 46, Snorlax VIV 131 as card draw, and Pokémon that prevent "sniper" damage, such as Manaphy BRS 41, Mew UNB 76, Mr. Mime BKT 97, Mr. Mime PLF 47.
- It is quite robust and can deal well with the game's answers, such as Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX CRE 75 as a high HP Pokémon, with charging abilities, card draw and even versatility with the damage equal to the number of energies attached to it.
- Besides that, we have two Tag Team Pokémon which have hybrid roles: Gengar & Mimikyu-GX TEU 53 deals damage equal to the amount of Trainer cards in the opponent's hand; and Trevenant & Dusknoir-GX PR-SM SM217 controlling their hand.
- I don't even need to mention fighting type Pokémon have no shot against this type of deck, right?
- Due to the presence of Alolan Muk SUM 58, it can even disrupt one of the best Expanded decks, such as Arceus & Dialga & Palkia-GX CEC 156 with Dragonite V PR-SW SWSH154 precisely as they have a lot of ability recursive Pokémon.
- Deck de Mew VMAX FST 114 has no shot because it depends on Genesect V FST 185 to draw cards, and Genesect is basic, so Alolan Muk SUM 58 locks down its ability.
- A possible Mirror Match might be a headache.
- Deck aggressive decks which can hit fast with a few energies, such as Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR ASR 40, Radiant Heatran ASR 27 because of its attack effect, which for each damage counter it has they get 70 damage, reaching massive damages.
- Decks which can declare damages above 250 at minimum and reach easily 320 damage and don't depend a lot on basic Pokémon with abilities. A Charizard VSTAR CRZ 19 using its VStar attack is potentially dangerous, or even cases such as Charizard VMAX PR-SW SWSH261, with the use of Choice Belt BRS 135 or Incineroar UNB 29 as additional damage support.
- "Single Prize" decks which hit hard and fast, such as Gyarados Energy Blast or Chandelure.
- "Hit Kill" or "Instant Kill" decks, such as Beedrill TEU 5 or Hisuian Zoroark LOR 76.
- Decks of the Dark archetype are tremendously favored.
It is a brute deck, quite versatile in its many tactic choice possibilities, such as controlling your opponent's hand, damage equal to the number of Trainers in the opponent's hand, damage equal to the number of energies in play, and basic Pokémon's ability lock. Overall, it is quite sustainable and solid to what it proposes to do, besides having recursive cards which contribute to the resource recycling and reuse.
The only more complicated part is the set-up of the three Shadow Rider Calyrex, so you can spin your deck efficiently overall, as it is the heart of the deck.
Now it's up to you: what did you think of the deck? You're welcome to comment down below.
See you next time!
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