In this article I want to talk about what I think about the new format that we just were thrown into. I haven’t tested this format, so all I can write about are theoretical things, but being able to just think about a format is important too.
When you realize that Night March and Trevenant don’t exist any more, the major threats all Mega decks had are gone, which are non EX OHKOs and T1 Item lock. Though the latter one still exists in terms of Vileplume, it’s hard to find a partner for Vileplume that stands a chance against 210 HP Pokemon and with Battle Compressor being gone, I think Vileplume lacks too much consistency to apply pressure. However in theory Sam Hough’s Vileplume deck with Glaceon EX, Jolteon EX and Ninjaboy is still a threat if it gets it’s set up.
So the first two Mega Pokemon everyone would think of are Rayquaza and Mewtwo, because they even saw success with Night March being around (Manectric left us too unfortunately).
Mega Rayquaza can hit 240 Damage in the first turn, thanks to Skyfield, Mega Turbo and Delta Evolution. That sounds super powerful, but that’s also a lot to ask for. Sure you have Hoopa EX, which can grab a bunch of Shaymin and Pokemon in general, but without Battle Compressor, the whole Mega Turbo thing works less effectively than it used to, and you have to draw everything in the right order. The next major threat Mega Rayquaza has is Parallel City, a Stadium card I believe being played as a very common 2-of card now, which can shut down the damage output Mega Rayquaza has from 240 to 90. Combined with an N and a KO on Rayquaza it will be very hard for Rayquaza to set up a second time. Especially since you loose all of your benched Pokemon and Sacred Ash rotated too. I still think that if you can craft a good Mega Rayquaza list you will win a lot of games, but if you consider that Mega Ray has no chance against Garbodor Parallel City and also isn’t the best deck to go up against non EX Pokemon, I don’t believe it to be a Tier 1 deck.
The deck that I do believe will become a Tier 1 deck is Mega Mewtwo Y. There are a few ways to run this deck and I will just explain a bit. First of all you can play the straight Mewtwo, just 4-4 Mega, 2 Shaymin, 1 Hoopa EX, Mega Turbo, DCE and you’re set. From there you get 2 different Mewtwo EX cards, the Damage Change and the Photon Wave Mewtwo. Shrine of Memories is an extremely good card, when paired with the Damage Change Mewtwo, but I’d like to point out that the Photon Wave Mewtwo is also worth a consideration. With Photon Wave you can deal 60 damage and your opponent would need 6 energy cards (30*8+10-30=220), if he doesn’t have this amount he can either use Damage Change (which he would need 3 energy for) or just do a two hit knock out with Psychic Infinity. When he goes for Damage Change you can attach another DCE and deal enough damage for the knock out, or just Photon Wave again, then he cannot Damage Change again, and he would still need a 4th energy card. Psyburn also OHKOs all of the Mewtwos.
There aren’t a lot of things you can do against Mewtwo, because most Psychic Pokemon have absurd energy cost, don’t deal enough damage and two hit knock outs in general are weird against Damage Change.
Mew from Fates Collide is great and Stardust Jirachi can stop Mewtwo for a turn as well.
Additionally, Mewtwo is the deck I can imagining fitting in a 2-2 Garbodor with 2 Float Stone best, you can even attack with Trubbish. So with Garbodor, Mega Rayquaza won’t be a problem and stuff like Greninja and Yanmaga should be a piece of cake too.
Other Mega Pokemon I like are Mega Scizor, which can be annoying to deal with when you play Mewtwo and Ray. Resistant against Mewtwo, it can discard Skyfield, Shrine, DCE, OHKO Shaymin and use Shield Energy and only needs 2 energy to attack.
Primal Groudon with Klefki sounds interesting, so against Mewtwo and Rayquaza you need to set and then you can just get rid of every Pokemon. You could play it with either Clawitzer or Carbink (Carbink being the Garbodor Safe option) or just Mega Turbo and Puzzles. Heavy Boots can also kind of replace Hard Charm.
Primal Kyogre should also be decent against Mewtwo and Rayquaza, with Manaphy you have free retreat, after attacking you only have 2 energy attached and you could play cards like Palkia EX, Glaceon EX, Regice or Articuno. The only thing I don’t like against Mega Rayquaza is that the Parallel City really cripples your damage output.
The next thing after Night March and Trevenant are Xeroisc and Megaphone, which means that there is no way to discard Tools any more. This means that Float Stone basically becomes a free retreater for the whole game and Fighting Fury Belt also being permanent will help non Mega Pokemon EX to compete. But there are Tools that gain more strength as well.
Bursting Balloon is now only countered by Lysandre or not attacking (or Sky Return if you want). Bursting Balloon helps every deck to get a hold of the massive HP Pokemon we have now and in combination with Faded Town you can two hit Megas without attacking with a high damage output.
Exp. Share now is something you can actually build your deck around and I really like it. Xerneas Break and Yveltal decks can use Exp Share really well, and in every non EX deck you can splash in one to slowly set up a huge Pokemon to carry the last KO. I think Exp. Share gives off a big option to be creative, you can play it in something like Rainbow Force too, I also played with the idea of using the Break Point Durant.
Other notable Tools are Assault Vest and Weakness Policy.
Now that you cannot discard Tools any more Garbodor just tells a bunch of decks that they are almost unplayable. While I believe that decks like Greninja and Volcanion are still playable, cards like Yanmega and Clawitzer are extremely risky to run at a tournament.
However, I do have a hard time thinking of decks that can use Garbodor, other then Mewtwo and Scizor.
Best deck to abuse Exp. Share, doesn’t struggle against Garbodor, Xerneas is one of the cards I really want to build a good deck around. I’ve seen people discussing pairing it with Giratina, to use Double Dragon Energy to get more Energy for the attack and having an out against Mega Pokemon. I don’t like Giratina because it gets done by the Colorless non Mega Rayquaza followed by a Hex Maniac Mega Rayquaza for 150 damage, so you would need Chaos Wheel plus Parallel City, but against Mega Mewtwo they just need 2 Basic Energy and Hex Maniac to deal 170 damage, so you would need a FFB and of course Enhanced Hammers. For me that sounds like a huge amount of dedication for just a small improvement. But compared to Darkrai EX, Xerneas can use all Energy, so running DCE cards are as good as DDE when you just look at the Break. Also, maybe just Stardust and Max Elixir and only non EX Pokemon will be enough against Mega Pokemon. If you can make Xerneas win against the Mega decks you have a great deck I believe.
Mega Scizor also shouldn’t have a problem against Giratina when they run Hammers and Hex Maniac, I think they can just run you out of DDE.
I played this deck at a LC yesterday and finished 3rd (which isn’t that great), but I liked my list so I’ll talk a bit about it.
Pokémon – 14
* 2 Shaymin-EX ROS 77
* 1 Umbreon-EX FAC 55
* 2 Yveltal BKT 94
* 2 Yveltal XY 78
* 3 Yveltal-EX XY 79
* 2 Zorua BKT 89
* 2 Zoroark BKT 91
Trainer Cards – 35
* 4 Bursting Balloon BKP 97
* 4 Trainers’ Mail ROS 92
* 2 Lysandre FLF 90
* 2 Faded Town AOR 73
* 4 Ultra Ball FLF 99
* 1 Float Stone BKT 137
* 2 N NVI 92
* 2 Fighting Fury Belt BKP 99
* 1 Reverse Valley BKP 110
* 2 Parallel City BKT 145
* 4 Professor Sycamore XY 122
* 4 VS Seeker PHF 109
* 2 Exp. Share PRC 128
* 1 Ninja Boy STS 103
Energy – 11
* 7 Darkness Energy 7
* 4 Double Colourless Energy XY 130
Like already mentioned Bursting Balloons are now a big thing and a FFB turns your Yveltal into almost a Mega Pokemon. Against Rayquaza you have Zoroark which should be enough, but also Parallel City. Against Mega Mewtwo I have 6 kick gyms to get rid of Shrine of Memories and have a Faded Town in play at the end. You can also bench an Umbreon EX with an Exp. Share, which is hard to knock out, they need 6 energy for the KO and then your Yveltal needs 4 Energy cards, or 3 Energy cards, a FFB and a Faded Town if the Mewtwo doesn’t have any damage. With Bursting Balloon you can get decent damage in play and use Y Cyclone to deal some chip damage. The one of Float Stone also stays once it’s in play. I didn’t play against anything else (I had one game against Greninja though, but that was over pretty fast, by just rushing with Yveltal EX) yet, but I would cut the Ninja Boy and add another N. I am also trying to figure out what I can cut for Zoroark Break. The reverse Valley was also kind OF random, I guess I will cut it for another Faded Town.
That’s all I have to say, I hope you enjoyed it ^^