Deck Analysis: FloatZone

by Pikkdogs ~ July 28th, 2011.

A big hello to all you OHKOers out there, this is Pikkdogs here with a post Pokemon Catcher deck analysis.

The subject of this article will be a deck that features Magnezone Prime and Floatzel.  One of the most popular decks going into Battle Roads will be Prime Time (Magnezone Prime and Yanmega Prime), this deck is a little different.  I consider this deck to be the spirtual successor to Mangeboar.  I am unsure if this a tier 2 deck or a fun league deck, maybe you can help decide.

Since Pokemon Catcher will make it more difficult to run a deck with bench sitting Pokemon, I decided to try a deck that had energy acceleration and free retreat from the bench sitters.  Now, you can still run Magneboar but in the Post Catcher (PC) format, the deck that started out a little shakey is about to get even shakier.

The decks main goal is to use Magnezone Prime’s “Lost Burn” attack to get a One Hit Knock Out each turn.  To get more energies on the field, Floatzel is used.  His “Water Acceleration” Poke-Power lets you attach a water energy to each Floatzel you have in play per turn, that does not include the 1 energy you can attach for your turn.

Of course this deck is very similar to Magneboar, so lets look at the pro’s and con’s of using this deck over Magneboar.

Pro’s

  • Less setup is needed since you have 1 stage 2 and 1 stage 1, instead of 2 stage 2’s.
  • There should be nothing on your bench that your opponent can Pokemon Catcher up to stall.
  • The deck is more focused because it does not run techs like Shuckle and RDL.
  • There is more room in this deck to fit original ideas and techs.

Cons

  • Rayquaza Deoxys Legend was a great card, but it does not fit into Floatzone.
  • There is no energy acceleration onto Magnezone itself.
  • The deck is a little slower without Shuckle.
  • Your bench is full of stuff that can be OHKOed fairly easily.

Matchups

Before we look at a basic list, lets look at some matchups that this deck has.

Reshiram Decks- The Reshiram matchup will stay pretty much the same from it’s matchup against Magneboar.  Floatzone is a little faster and more consistent and it can use Floatzel to hit for weakness, while it will miss RDL and drawpower of Shuckle. The matchup should be fairly even and will be determined by the skill of each player, luck, and the exact list each player is playing.

Zekrom Decks- Pretty much what I said about Reshiram can be said about Zekrom, but instead Floatzel is now a liability in the weakness department instead of an asset.  The loss of RDL does hurt Floatzone in this matchup, but both decks should have about an even shot at winning.

Donphan/Yanmega– Donphan Yanmega is like a tool box deck, it has a counter for everything.  Well, in this matchup it will come out a little short.  When your opponent has Yanmega active, you will only need to Lost Zone 2 energies for an OHKO, 1 energy if the Yanmega has taken a damage counter because of “Earthquake.”  If you opponent sends Donphan up instead, than you will turn to Floatzel.  The Floatzel v.s. Donphan matchup is pretty much a wash.  Each of them can hit the other for 2 damage counters short of a knock out.  Donphan is a little faster because of his 1 energy attak, but because of “Water Acceleration”, it should not be hard to power up Floatzel.  This should be about an even matchup.  The key is being able to keep Magnezone away from Donphan, and being able to knock out a Yanmega with Magnezone.   It will be a close game, but Floatzone might have the slightest adavantage.

Primetime- Well, so far we have had 3 even matchups, and here is another.  Again. Magnezone is not afraid of Yanmega, but we do not have the “Earthquake” damage in this matchup.  The Magnezone’s should cancel each other out, but the Floatzels will be a good target for their Magnezone’s.  Your Magnezone will be a little more powerful, however, because you will have more energy on the field.  Primetime might have a slight advantage here, but basically again we have another even matchup.  The game will probably go to who gets the better draw on the Judge’s that are used by the Primetime player.

Ambipom/Weavile/Slowking–  Disruption decks will be a tough matchup for this deck.  These disruption decks get ripped apart by a fast attacker, but FloatZone doesn’t normally fit that bill.  If you can get an early Magnezone, perhaps you can control the matchup, but if not you could be in trouble.  I would give this matchup towards the disruption deck, it is not an autoloss, just not a favorable one.

Kingdra/Yanmega– I think Kingdra/Yanmega is the best deck nobody is talking about.  In this matchup however, I think it will come short.  Yes the Kingdra Primes will help Yanmega snipe out Floatzels and Buizel’s, but the lightning weakness that each have could be too much to overcome.  I will give this matchup to FloatZone, I don’t think its an autowin, but it isn’t very far away from one.

So, thats what I think about the matchups.  From these matchups we learn one thing, Floatzone will not be the BDIF.  It has a lot of tough matchups, and a player will need a lot of luck to be able to take a tournament.  But, the deck does not have terrible matchups.  There does not seem to be a deck right now that easily beats every other deck, so every deck has an uphill better.  Floatzone may not be quite as good as Primetime or DonMega, but with the right list it may not be too far away.  Or, this deck may be doomed to be just another league deck.

Did someone say list?   Okay, lets checkout a list.  A couple sentences ago I said this deck has the potential to be good with the right list, this list I will give you is not the right list.  It is just something to get you started on testing.  I have tested it out, and this deck seems to be headed in the right direction, but it could turn out to be nothing more than a league deck.  I’m not sold on this deck being a great one, but lets look at a list to see if we can see a way to make it better.  The list was updated on July 31st.

Pokemon-19

  • 3-1-3 Magnezone Prime Triumphant
  • 3-3 Floatzel Unleashed
  • 1-Cleffa
  • 2-1-2 Kingdra Prime

Trainers-25

  • 3-Professor Juniper
  • 4-Pokemon Collector
  • 3-Professor Oaks New Theory
  • 1- Energy Retrieval
  • 4-Pokemon Communication
  • 3-Pokemon Catcher
  • 3-Junk Arm
  • 4-Rare Candy

Energy-15

  • Water-10
  • Lightning-5

So there is a list for you.  I’m not sure how good this deck is, I know its not Tier 1 or anything like that.

Kingdra Prime is a new addition to this deck, and I have actually not tested it.  Its “Spray Splash” Poke-Power lets you place one damage counter each turn.  This will help you get an OHKO on Donphan Prime with Floatzel Ul.  It can also help get knock outs with Magnezone Prime, without sacrificing an extra energy card.  Kingdra could be a great addition to this deck.  Since it also has a one energy attack, Kingdra can attack fairly well.

www.onehitko.com user Curtis was nice enough to share his list with us.  So I will put his list here.  It is a better list than mine and can be a better list to start testing with.  But, I caution that if your a young player, testing a polished list can be hurtful.  It might be better to start out with a more basic list like mine.  But if you are experienced player, there is no question you should use Curtis’s list. Here is his list and explanation:

Pokemon – 18
3-1-3 Magnezone Prime
3-3 Floatzel
1-0-1 Kingdra Prime
2 Cleffa
1 Tyrogue

T/S/S – 27
3 Pokemon Collector
3 Sage’s Training
2 Professor Oak’s New Theory
1 Flower Shop Lady
3 Pokemon Communication
4 Rare Candy
2 Pokemon Reversal (Pokemon Catcher upon release)
2 Switch
3 PlusPower
2 Energy Retrieval
2 Junk Arm

Energy – 15
5 Lightning Energy
15 Water Energy

So I’ll give some rationale behind the list.
The Kingdra remains a 1-0-1 tech because it is just that: a tech. It’s not necessary every game. The first time I search my deck, I look for both Kingdra and Horsea. If either of them are in my prizes, the one remaining in my deck is basically dead to me. I’ll have no aversion to Junk Arming or Sage’s Training-ing it away. Worst comes to worst, I’ll get it back late game with Flower Shop Lady.
The reason for it in the first place is obviously, first and foremost, for Spray Splash. One damage on Donphan = only three energy necessary for Lost Burn. One damage on Yanmega = only one necessary for Lost Burn. He’s a decent secondary attacker, and while Fire types do hinder him, he allows Floatzel to OHKO Reshiram if necessary.

Tyrogue is here for the donk potential. Not everyone’s running Cleffa anymore, but the potential is always there. Also, if you go first, the odds are in your favor to KO their 60 or less HP basic in two turns.

More than 3 Pokemon Collector in a deck generally seems a little overkill to me. This deck consistently can get a Magnemite and Buizel out turn one, and after it does, it usually runs like butter from there.

I opted for a heavier PlusPower line for a few different reasons. 1.) You don’t always get that Kingdra, 2.) Floatzel gets to OHKO Donphan, 3.) Magnezone gets to Lost Burn one energy to OHKO 60HP basics, usually early game, 4.) You can Junk Arm it if necessary.

Switch: to retreat Magnezone. ‘Nuff said.

One Flower Shop Lady. If you need another, you probably already lost due to your own mistake.

Two Energy Retrieval is necessary. Running a one-of recovery trainer is risky. Also, you can Junk Arm it. As far as this deck is concerned, nothing really slaps your opponent in the face as much as using Magnetic Draw, Sage’s Training for more cards and discarding energy, then Retrieval for those energy and throwing down 3-4 of them on the board in one turn.

Heads up: as sad as it is, this deck loses miserably to Umbreon unless you can take fast prizes early and get lucky heads on Reversal when you need them. Attempt to attack with Magneton and get that Kingdra out ASAP. The Zekrom matchup is also tough, but this deck really can hold its own against most anything else.

I don’t mean to one-up Pikkdogs or anything, but I do hope this list gives a little better insight into how to play this deck and do it well.

The PC era has a lot of surprises for us, and the playability of this deck is one of those.  So what do you guys think?  Is this deck a successor to Magneboar?  Or is it more of a league thing?  Whie I know this deck isn’t terrible, I’m not sure of the fate of it myself.  I know it does what it is supposed to do, and I guess thats a good thing.  It is a little cheaper than Prime Time, and uses a popular Pokemon, Floatzel; so that may be enough to get some players to try it.  Please leave your thoughts about this deck in the comment box.

Category: Deck Discussion | Tags: ,