Top Ten Decks for Nationals

by Pikkdogs ~ June 23rd, 2012.

A big hello to all you OHKOers out there.  It may be hard to believe, but we are just days away from U.S. Nationals 2012.  This is the big one folks.  No, it may not be the most important tournament of the year, but it is sure the biggest one.  So as you guys are packing your swimming suit, underwear, and extra pounds of bacon (or is that just me?) make sure to take a quick second to look at my article at the top 10 decks to watch out for at Nats.  Yes I am just a fat guy who never wins anything, but maybe I’ll surprise even myself and tells you something that might help you at Nats.  But first, let us welcome my extra-dimensional sidekick Pedro.  Hey Pedro!

Hey Pikkdogs. 

                For your news article today Pedro, since it is the anniversary of the death of one of my heros, will you please talk about him.

Okay, no problem.  Today is the anniversary of the death of one of Pikkdog’s heroes.  Liberace was a very gifted pianist-

-No, Not Liberace.

Well, I thought because of the way you dress you might be a Liberace fan. 

No I’m not a Liberace fan.  Try again.

Okay, I think I got it this time.  Today we mourn the death of Emperor Caligula.  Caligula was the Roman Emperor who was known for participating in wild orgies-

No,  Caligula is not my hero either.

I thought you are one that would appreciate a crazy emperor who is drunk with power that regularly throws orgies. 

No.

Well, I would talk about Cher, Richard Simmons, and Elton John; but they aren’t dead yet. 

None of those people are my heroes, and stop with the gay jokes.  I was talking about Smedly Butler.

Oh of course.  Wait, whose Smedly Butler?

He was a marine-

And you said stop with the gay jokes.

I don’t  like him just because he was a man in uniform.

So you do like a man in uniform. I always thought all those pictures of girls with nice boobs were just cases of over compensation. 

Not what I was trying to say.    Smedly Butler was a marine who served during the early part of the 20th century.  He served in the Phillipines and in France during the First World War.  For his service he became the most highly decorated soldier of his time.  After the wars he began serving in what would today be known as the CIA.  There, he did things like assassinate foreign leaders for the benefit of the U.S. government  and U.S. businesses.  He was also offered the job as a figure head leader of the United States in the Business Plot, which was a coup attempt to make the U.S. a Facist government in the 1930s.  But, Butler decided to change his life and reported the Coup attempt to the media, and then became a speaker against U.S. imperialism and a peace advocate.

So he was a crazy guy that thought that someone was going to overthrow the president.  I would think that Liberace would be a better hero for you. 

Well that was a disaster.  Let’s please just move on and go to the article.

Ten Decks to Watch Out For at U.S. Nationals

                10.    Triple V/Mew Lock

Mewlock is the oldest deck in this list, but it could be perhaps the fastest rising deck of them all.  Kyle “Pooka” Sucevich ran this deck in a Battle Roads a couple weeks ago, and that started a fair amount of buzz for this deck.  That momentum should carry into Nationals.  You might also see this deck without Mew, and the actual Vanilluxe.  But, the idea is the same.

What to Watch Out For– Mew Lock is a slow moving deck that can easily come back from 5 prizes down to win, it is the comeback kid.  It works by Lost Zoning Vanilluxe and Unfezant BW, and then using Mew Prime to use their attacks.  The player first uses “Double Freeze” to paralyze the defending Pokemon and slowly chipping away at HP.  Then you use “Fly” to knockout the defending Pokemon and prevent an attack for next turn.  Vileplume is also in this deck to make sure that you can’t heal paralysis.

How to Beat it–  The deck is the most vulnerable early.  If you start the game fast and use Pokemon Catcher to take out Oddishes, you should be able to stop the deck before it starts.  If you do not take out the Vileplume line before your opponent sets up, you will basically be trapped until your opponent misses some coin flips.

Link to ListHere is the link to my Mewlock Deck from Cities.  There are some changes I would make to update it.  Most decks would not run Relicanth or the other fire Victini.  Most decks just run Mew to put people in the Lost Zone.

9.  Quad EX Decks

No two Quad EX decks are the same, so it is hard to stick them all into one category, but they are not all that different.  You may see Quad Groudon EX, Quad Entei EX, or Quad Kyurem EX.  Those are probably just the most popular Quad decks, you could see even more variants.  These decks are very simple and use trainers to get the most out of EX Pokemon.  They are also fairly quick and fast recovering.

What to Watch Out For–  These guys will take three turns to setup, but then they will do consistent damage of 90-120.  Usually these decks include Eviolite, Potion, and the combo of Max Potion and Energy Switch to keep their Pokemon alive for a longer period of time.  Once you do finally get a knock-out they will use Exp. Share to transition from one attacker to another.

How to Beat it–  Trainerlock and energy removal are good things to use against these decks.  As an attacker, you should Eviolite an EX that can do a lot of damage.  Most quad decks are ok at getting 2HKOs, but 3HKOs might give you an advantage.  If you play along with these decks and keep them in the game, you could very well lose a very close game in the end.

Link to ListHere is the link to my Entei EX list I ran at my last Battle Roads.

8.  Zoroark Decks

While I like to take all dark decks and group them together-

-Does that make you a racist?

I’m not sure, but to be sure I will split them up in this article.  Zoroark decks are known as more budget forms of the Darkrai EX decks that did so well at Spring Battle Roads.  But, they are fast decks that can do a lot of damage, so they are serious decks that you need to take…………well………seriously.

What to Watch Out For– Zoroark decks contain a lot of Darkness Pokemon and want to use Zoroarks swarm like attack to do a lot of damage.  These decks also use trainers like Dark Patch and Dark Claw to do a lot of damage fast.  These decks are not fancy, they  will just be doing a lot of damage to the active quickly.

How to Beat it– These decks don’t have the energy removal that Darkrai/Tornadus decks do, so if you just rush them with fighting Pokemon you should be okay.  If you don’t play and fighting Pokemon make sure to use Pokemon Catcher to get a knockout each turn.  Even if you don’t take out a Zoroark each turn, just taking out a Darkness Pokemon is good enough to limit the damage potential of the deck.   If you can use Pokemon Catcher effectively you should have a good shot at taking the win.

Link to List Here is the link to Ed’s budget Zoroark deck.  If you wanna run it just put in Pokemon Catchers and stuff like that.

7.  Durant

I feel safe in predicting that almost nobody will play Heatmor DE in their nationals decks.  So, anybody who plays Durant will not be making a bad choice.  This deck did very well during Cities season, and should have fairly similar match-ups during Nationals.  Durant may not have as much player support as it did several months ago, but that doesn’t mean Durant decks shouldn’t have an okay go at Nationals.

What to Watch Out For– Of course Durant is a very fast deck that will be milling 4 cards per turn starting turn 1.  This will make it very hard for you to setup any kind of complicated deck, because your opponent will be discarding your resources.  Your only hope is that you can start OHKOing Durants very quickly, or you can get setup quickly.  Also, watch out for energy removal, Durant decks will try to take out your energy.  If you need three energies to attack you could be in trouble.

How to Beat it–  Hit it for weakness or find a way to consistently hit it for about 100 damage with an attack that only costs 1-2 energies.  Make sure to use basic energies instead of special energies, much harder to remove.  Also, using 2 Super Rods or something like that will help you refresh your resources after they are discarded.  Also, don’t put down more than 1 Pokemon if you don’t need to.  Durant decks rarely do damage, and if they do you will see it coming.  If you put down other Pokemon they will be Catchered up in an attempt to stall you.

Link to ListHere is a link to our buddy Airhawk’s Durant deck on www.sixprizes.com.

6.  Klingklang EX

Klingklang EX is a deck that was popularized by Onehitko.com’s own TAndrewT.  It uses Klingklang BW to move energy between a bunch of EX Pokemon.  It is a deck that can take advantage of almost any weakness, and a deck that is hard to disrupt since almost any Pokemon can retreat for free because of Darkrai EX.  It is a little slow but it is a deck that is very hard to beat once it is setup.

What to Watch Out For–                The Klingklang player can hit almost any Pokemon for weakness, which makes it hard to beat.  So, watch out for Pokemon that can OHKO you, it could happen quickly with energy switching.  It is also important to OHKO your opponent, since it is easy to use Max Potion in a Klingklang deck.

How to Beat it–  Trainerlock can hurt it early, but you don’t need trainerlock to beat it.  It is most vulnerable early on, so make sure to target the Klingklang line so that they can’t setup.  Also, make sure to include some Lost Removers so you can get rid of the Rainbow and Prism energies, those make things a lot easier for the Klingklang player.  You can also take advantage of weakness, if your opponent drops anything that you can hit for weakness, use your Pokemon Catchers to get it active.   A fire deck will do well against Klingklang, because it is fire weak.

Link to ListHere is the article in which TAndrewT unveiled the Klingklang EX deck.

5.  Quad Terrakion

Quad Terrakion has evolved from a counter deck that was used at States, to a deck that is well rounded enough to become an actual deck.  Give It three turns and it should be able to use cards like Exp. Share to keep the 90 damage coming turn after turn.  It also can hit almost all lightning and dark Pokemon for weakness, that means that it can OHKO some of the best Pokemon around.  This deck may not be the most impressive on paper, but if it is sitting across from you, watch out it is a serious deck.

What to Watch Out For– Plan on it doing 90 damage each turn, so don’t think that you might be able to take it slow just because you can get a KO this turn.   Look out for energy removal, these decks do have those energy disruption cards in here, so take it easy with the special energies.  Finally, look for Ruins of Alph, just because you have Tornadus EX in your deck doesn’t mean that you can hide behind your resistance.

How to Beat it–  Becareful who you knockout and use Pokemon Catcher to bring up low energy Terrakions.  Make sure to manage the amount of energy on the field, if you can take energy off the field you will start to starve the Terrakions.  And, remember to never KO a Pokemon if you are not ready for the 90 HP next turn.  Another good strategy is to use Crushing Hammer to remove energies, energies are very important to this deck, if you take them away they will be trapped in a corner.

Link to ListHere is an article that has a fighting/Terrakion list in it.  Its at the bottom of the article.

4.  CMT

                With the success of Darkrai over Zekrom, CMT is now starting to crawl back into the championship picture.  CMT has been successful since States, and it is simply the fastest most disruptive deck out there.

What to Watch Out For– Mewtwo EX can take out any evolution line easily in the first few turns, so you will need luck to beat it with an evolution deck.  Mewtwo EX can also hit those Quad decks for a lot of damage if it gets a lot of DCE on it.  Don’t forget about Celebi Prime, it can not only provide energy acceleration early, but it can help add an extra energy late game if needed.

How to Beat it–  The best way to beat CMT decks is to tech a couple of your own Mewtwo EXs in to your decks and return “X-Ball” KOs with an “X-Ball”  of your own.  Using Lost Remover on those DCEs is almost important in keeping the damage down from Mewtwo.

Link to ListHere is the CMT list I tried for testing.

          3.  Troll

                Troll, a deck that consists of Terrakion, Tornadus, and Mewtwo EX, is my pick to win it all this year.  It can hit for weakness on a lot of decks, and is just really consistent.  I don’t usually like decks that are made to counter popular decks, but this one just seems to work.  I love the fact that this deck usually uses Super Scoop Up when it gets into dangerous situations, love that card.  Troll is just a very well balanced deck that gets a good advantage over most of the decks in the format.

What to Watch Out For– Troll can hit a lot of decks for weakness, so if you can hide weak Pokemon do so.  This deck likes to start Tornadus and then get energy spread apart on the field.  This makes the deck very versatile, so watch out for attacks out of nowhere.  Troll players are usually really good and very calculating, if you play Troll you might have to match wits with a very good player.  Also, if you play CMT look out for the Mewtwo EX drops out of nowhere.

How to Beat it–  It is very hard to beat Troll because it is a very diverse deck.  If you play a lightning deck, they will never drop down the lightning weak Tornadus, but will try to make you beat all of the Terrakions.  So it will be very hard to hit for weakness, you just have to put on your thinking caps and try to out think the Troll player.  Just try to make your deck run the best way possible without playing into the Troll players hand.

Link to ListHere is my try at a Troll deck.

 2.  Zekrom and Eels/ Eel Box

                Zek/Eels was once the #1 deck, but Darkrai proved that it could win the most decks during Spring Battle Road season.  Does that mean that Zekrom is inferior to Darkrai?  No, Spring Battle Roads will be nothing like Nationals.  I will not be the least surprised if Darkrai decks do poorly and Eel decks take the top spots.

One note here, I am grouping the Zekrom deck and the Eel Box deck together.  This means that this category includes everything from Zekrom to Terrakion, as long as the deck has an Eelektrik in it.

What to Watch Out For– Zekrom decks are most aggressive offensive decks out there.  They can easily hit for 150 damage without much thought.  They are also very high on recovery, those lightning energies are like boomerangs, they just keep coming back onto the field of play.  If you want to beat this deck you need to dodge attacks that can hit for weakness and Pokemon that can hide behind their own resistance.  Eelektrik is  a major part of decks that have really good Pokemon in them, those decks are hard hitting and very consistent.

How to Beat it–  Eel decks are susceptible early game.  If you can do 40 damage on turn one you do have a good chance of donking a Tynamo.  If you can’t get the donk, you can always use Pokemon Catcher to knock out a Tynamo or Eelektrik before its owner gets full use out of it.  As long as your opponent cannot attack you right away, you should be able to knock out those Eels before they really do what they are supposed to do.  Fighting Pokemon are also hard for this deck to beat, you might see Zapdos or Tornadus EX to fight against the fighting Pokemon.  You should be able to outclass the Zapdos, and make sure to include Ruins of Alph to make Tornadus beatable.

Link to List Here is the decklist I use for testing.

  1. Darkrai/Tornadus EX

Darkrai/ Tornadus EX is the hottest deck out right now.  It is the deck that everybody is talking about.  It won a lot more Battle Roads than almost any other deck.  It is a fairly quick deck that can attack quick and do a lot of disruption to you.  Look out for energy removal cards and Weavile UD, these cards could screw up any strategy that you have going.

What to Watch Out For– Look out for energy disruption, make sure you have a reliable way to get energy back from the discard because you will need it.  Also, watch out for Darkrai sniping your bench for 30, they could be setting you up for an OHKO next turn.  You may want to not drop a Pokemon until you absolutely need it.  Most decks like this also run Sableye, so watch out for them getting their trainer cards back.  Finally, watch out for trainers like Dark Claw and Dark Patch, these make the deck harder hitting and easy recovering.

How to Beat it– There are some things you can do to beat Darkrai decks.  One, they do not really like trainerlock, so that is an idea.  Make sure to run plenty of Ns, you don’t want your opponent to use those item cards they just got back with Sableye.    This deck does not do a whole heck of a lot of damage, so if you have a hard hitting deck you should be able to go toe to toe with it and win if you can avoid the disruption.  And finally, watch out for Weavile Ud.  You should be able to use Pokemon Catcher on Sneasel to avoid having to discard an important card.

Link to ListHere is a link to the deck that won Nationals in the great Country of Finland. Thanks go to our brothers from www.thedeckout.com for that one.

 

Conclusion

Well, that’s all I got to say.  Just to let you know, I know that I will be wrong on some of these choices.  There will probably be some popular deck choices that I didn’t talk about, but these should be some of the most popular ones.  Also, make sure to watch out for rogue decks, I have a feeling that a Mismagius deck could hit the scene and do some damage.  Make sure you are ready for anything, not just the ten decks that some jerk like me comes up with.

Pedro, it is now time for you to wrap this thing up.  Since I did a top 10 article, why don’t you carry on the tradition of doing a David Letterman style top 10 list?

Okay.  Today’s Top Ten List is the Top Ten Reasons That you will be late for U.S. Nationals

Number  10.  You stayed in your car too late because you were jamming out to “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen. 

No shame there.  She is one cute Canadian.

Number  9.  You stayed in your motel too late because you were making out with your girlfriend, wait nevermind you’re a Pokémon player. 

He’s offensive, but not wrong.

Number  8.  Your hotel offered free Biscuits and Gravy. 

That was me last year.

Number  7.  You waited too long to get screwed in the Troll and Toad selling line.

Too be fair, they do have overhead.

Overhead? That sounds like something that happens in an orgy (by the way, this is the third use of the word “orgy” in this article.  I have a feeling this article will soon get censored).  Number 6.   You got lost in the Convention Center trying to find out where they sell those little balls of ice cream. 

Those are some amazing little balls.

That’s what she said.  Number 5.  You overslept because your roommate stayed up late watching “Weird Sex” on tv. 

Did you see that one where that guy makes out with his car?  That was quite the episode. 

The number 4 reason you will be late for U.S. Nationals is that your car broke down  because you thought that it could run on Double Colorless Energy after you ran out of gas. 

It seems like a sound principle.

Number 3.  You were late because you bought a Dark Explorers box from Troll and Toad and had to pull all 5 of your Kyorgre EXs. 

That’s me.

Number 2.  You spent the entire night rocking out to Good Luck Varsity,Rival Summers , and PK Fire at the 2012 Unofficial Pokémon Nationals Afterparty. 

Party on Wayne.

Party on Garth.  And the Number 1 Reason you are going to be late for 2012 US Nationals is………………..  f***ing road construction. 

Nice Job.  Good night everybody.

Category: National Championships | Tags:
  • TAndrewT

    Best of luck at Nats Pikk!

    • pikkdogs

      Are you gonna be there Dr. T?

      • TAndrewT

        Nope, work and $$$ will keep me away this year. Maybe next year though!

  • Austin Stephen

    No vileplume variants? turning 50% of someone’s deck into dead draw is incredibly powerful.sure, you put in VVV but, if anything, it’s the worst of the 3 top variants (Truth, Cinccino, VVV) as so many things can ruin it, even discounting bad flips.

    • coolestman22

      Cinccino and Truth aren’t good. Raikou says hi to both.

      If Raikou is paralyzed, screw Raikou.

      • Micah Tate

        Well I won’t disagree that Cinccino and Truth are way less playable than VVV, Raikou can completely wreck VVV as well. Hello 75% chance of paralysis.

        • coolestman22

          The 75% chance of paralysis that’s really a 93.25% chance of paralysis you mean?

          • Micah Tate

            LOL, sorry, I was inferring that you would snipe victini, didn’t make that completely clear I guess

          • coolestman22

            Why would you snipe something that can be so easily replaced over Vileplume?

          • Micah Tate

            An N makes it near impossible to “so easily replace” any card that you need. What would sniping Vileplume do to help? That would be near the worst thing to snipe with Raikou.

          • coolestman22

            And you just assume N and Raikou will fall into your lap under trainerlock?

            And sniping Vileplume twice breaks the lock.

          • Micah Tate

            It’s easier to get an N and 1 Raikou than back to back Raikou. 

            If you don’t N them they’ll have access to a 2nd plume =/

          • coolestman22

            A second Vileplume?

          • Micah Tate

            1/0/1 vileplume? 

      • Austin Stephen

         I’ve beaten Raikou (as in no Zekrom) decks with both the Truth and Cinccino. Aside from that, nobody even plays Raikou. Raikou kills the Truth like Heatmor killed Durant

  • coolestman22

    I’m sure you “forgot’ to include your own Nats deck.

    Empoleon.

    • pikkdogs

      well. unless I change decks, which I might do, I did include my deck. 

  • airhawk06

    I think Troll is also a great choice for Nats, as long as Hammertime is not extremely prevalent. It kinda folds to really hard energy denial

  • pikkdogs, you are my hero.

    • pikkdogs

      much love bro. 

  • Ed

    I’d like to be there, but I’ll be on a different vacation.

  • coolestman22

    Maybe the Number 6 deck was actually Number One?