Unlimited Alakazam Chansey Pokemon Report

by Ed ~ April 6th, 2010.

Alakazam - Base SetI’m going to file this under “Tourney Report” even though it turned out to not be an actual tournament. It still felt like a tournament to me, even though it wasn’t official. Here’s the story.

My family and I went out to Rapid City over the Easter weekend. We arrived on Friday, and Grandma came home from skiing. We hadn’t told her that we were coming, so she was surprised and cried tears of joy to see her grandkids. Then, on Saturday morning, they took my kids skiing. Can you sense a theme here? Yeah, they dig the slopes.

I figured that Pokemon was cheaper than a lift ticket, so I’d go do my own thing for the day. The Rapid City “South Side Pokemon League” had a tournament scheduled for the day, so the timing was right. It was an Unlimited Constructed tournament with a catch. Cards that are currently Modified-legal were banned. I thought this was quite an interesting twist, and since I didn’t have much for cards in between very old and very new, I didn’t know what to expect.

I arrived at “First Chance Last Chance Games” (which, according to this legend, was once “First Chance Last Chance Saloon” 101 years ago) and there was a long wait. This is only the second time I’ve tried to attend a Pokemon event in Rapid City, and both have been on holiday weekends. The last time was the day after Christmas and the morning after a big snowstorm. I think there were only 3 local players that day. The day before Easter was slightly better. 6 people (which includes myself) showed up and had decks. A 7th person also showed without a deck. I figured that I could build him a deck real quick if it came to it, but we needed at least 8. That didn’t happen, so the tournament was officially called off. Unofficially, though, I figured people (like myself) had built interesting decks, so I still wanted to battle it out.

During what was now league time, I was able to duel 4 of the 5 players that built decks for the tournament. I didn’t really keep notes about individual games, since it wasn’t a tourney. I did take a couple pictures (that are now posted at the bottom of this article). I do recall that my first match was against Adam. His deck revolved around Dark/Rocket Pokemon. Many of them were EX, and after a long defensive battle, I was able to KO 3 of them to get my 6 prizes.

Then, I played against Chris. Chris was one of the guys that actually showed up the day after Christmas. On this day, though, Chris wasn’t feeling well. I didn’t see a whole lot of his deck, and I got the feeling that he was just going through the motions of playing just to humor me and my desire to play against people’s tournament decks.

After playing Chris, I played against a younger kid. I’m sorry, but I don’t remember his name. His deck was mostly Base Set fire Pokemon. He did get Charizard powered up and even did a Fire Spin. After he removed 2 of his own energy, and Chansey wasn’t even phased by the Fire Spin, he seemed to lose interest in Charizard. My Energy Removal combined with his own put him in a pretty bad spot against my damage removal.

My final match was against Becky. I recall thinking that her deck was rather interesting, but I don’t recall what all she played. I do remember the Delta Species Jolteon repeatedly doing Return Spark. After several of these attacks, some Damage Swapping and Pokemon Centers came out. Let’s just say that Becky wasn’t real happy with me. Energy Removal and damage removal combined to frustrate my opponents all day.

So, I went 4-0 in the non-tournament. I played tons of Energy Removal and other nastiness. I was very surprised that nobody played any Energy Removal, Gust of Wind, Professor Oak, Item Finder, CPU Search, etc. against me. At least I don’t recall any.

So, I had fun, and I hope that I wasn’t too annoying of an opponent for the South Siders. Now, let me get into the deck I played. I had 2 decks left around from the Base Set/Jungle/Fossil time-frame. One is a Haymaker deck, and the other was this Alakazam Damage Swap deck. I figured that the Haymaker would take too much modification, because it had cards like Bill, Plus Power, and Electabuzz that were all reprinted recently. The Alakazam deck had some things like Double Colorless Energy and Bill, but they weren’t as integral to the play of the deck.

Persian - Ex Delta SpeciesPokemon Center - Base SetRecycle Energy - GenesisChansey - Base SetAbdi lent me a few interesting trainers/supporters/energy, and on the 9 hour drive to Rapid City, I built my deck. I had one very interesting find while searching through some of the odd cards I picked up here and there along the way. Persian, from EX Delta Species, looked pretty darn cool. Its “Prowl” Poke-Power lets you search your deck for ANY 1 card and put it in your hand, and it’s “Snap Tail” attack can snipe for 30 damage. Both seemed good to me.

Once I arrived, I laid it out and took another look. The deck is almost entirely defense, and I was worried that an opponent might set up a quick attack and use Gusts to take out my wimps before I could do anything. To counter that, I decided to toss in 4 Energy Removal (the deck already had 2 Super Energy Removal). I figured that the removal could slow down an opponent long enough to get my damage swap/removal set up. It did.

Here’s the list I ran. At the bottom, I’ll give a quick run-down of how the deck works.

Pokemon: 14
4 Chansey (Base)
2 Mr. Mime (Jungle)
2 Abra (Base)
2 Kadabra (Base)
2 Alakazam (Base)
1 Meowth (Jungle)
1 Persian (Delta Species)

Trainers: 24
4 Energy Removal
2 Super Energy Removal
2 Scoop Up
3 Pokemon Center
2 Item Finder
2 Computer Search
2 Professor Oak
2 Gust of Wind
2 Master Ball
2 Dual Ball
1 Pokemon Retriever

Supporters: 8
2 Celio’s Network
2 Lanette’s Net Search
1 Wally’s Training
1 Mr. Stone’s Project
1 Forrest Guardian
1 Island Hermit

Energy: 14
7 Psy Energy
2 Recycle Energy
2 Full Heal Energy
3 Double Rainbow Energy

The idea is to start with Chansey. If you can use his Scrunch attack to slow down the opponent, that’s great. You can also use Scoop Up to clear damage off of him (or as an alternative to retreating). Energy Removal is a very nice way to add to this stall (and ruin your opponent’s chance of ever doing anything useful in some cases). While stalling with that wall, you need to build up Alakazam (and maybe Persian) on the bench.

Once Alakazam is set up, then you can start moving damage counters around. I would usually spread them out evenly among the benched Chanseys. That reduces the chance of a Gust KOing one. If you have a Scoop Up, you can put up to 110 damage on a Chansey (without energy on him) and Scoop him. If not, just wait until you start getting uncomfortable with all the counters, move them to any un-energied Pokemon you have, and play Pokemon Center. That’s a sure-fire way to annoy your opponent.

At some point, you will want to attack. If you’ve devastated your opponent enough, you can use Chansey’s Double Edge attack. It does 80 to the opponent, but it also does 80 to Chansey. To use this effectively, you need to be fairly certain that your opponent can’t do 40 damage to Chansey on his turn. If he can’t, then you can just swap the damage back to the bench, and do it all over again.

Persian’s sniping attack also turned out to be pretty good. It only does 30, but that worked well against some wimpy benched guys. The Double Rainbow Energy helps Persian but reduces the output to only 20. Kadabra can attack for 50, but usually you’d need to evolve him to Alakazam. In the original deck, Kadabra would be a main attacker. Here, it didn’t usually happen that way. Alakazam is a bit of a last-ditch attacker. He can confuse the opponent, but it doesn’t seem worth it usually.

Chris and Ben Waiting For the Tourney to Start

It still seems that the deck is VERY lacking in the offense department. The combination of massive defense and energy devastation proved to be too much for what my opponents had prepared for. I think that some well-timed Gust of Wind or a speedy attacker would have wrecked me. As it turned out, though, this was the right combination for the day’s metagame.

Becky and Adam Getting Prepared for the Tourney

I’d like to say “Thanks!” to the players in Rapid City. You guys run a great league. I wish ours was run that well. It really helps when the league is run by actual players that are passionate about the game and bringing new people to it. I think that “Adam” and “Ben” are planning a trip to Colorado for regionals. If you happen to play ’em, say “Hi!” for me. As for me, I’m getting ready to go to Wisconsin for regionals.

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