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Predictions: Post Rotation World Championships 2019 (Part One)

This year the Pokemon TCG World Championships will be taking place once again in Washington D.C. and will be streamed on Twitch on the official Pokemon TCG Channel. The event will take place from August 16th through the 18th and some of the best players in the entire world are squaring up against each other to try and take home the grand prize. With all of these amazing things however there comes a big first for the event. 

The official rotation for the 2020 format of Pokemon hits on August 14th. This means many decks that have been meta staples for a long time will suddenly be unavailable for worlds. Many staple cards from Double Colorless Energy to Guzma have been lost to the rotation meaning decks are about to see a major change. We've written about Pokemon Searching cards post rotation as well as gusting cards post rotation for those interested. 

The big takeaway here is that the game is going through a major change right before the largest event of the year. So what kind of decks can we expect? What should those building decks for the event be on the lookout for? We've got our predictions here to help give you an idea on what may be present at the event. With so many possibilities we've split up these articles into three parts. Today we'll be looking at some decks that specifically work with a 'fire power' build. Let's give this a big look! 

Ultimate Fire Power

Welder UNB 214 Fire Crystal UNB 231  Fiery Flint DRM 76

Before we can even start talking about decks, we have to talk about what looks to be the strongest draw power and Energy attachment tools to remain after the rotation. To be honest, it was also incredibly wonderful before the rotation as well, but with Double Colorless Energy out of the mix these cards are going to be major players even more than ever before. Welder, Fire Crystal, and Fiery Flint combined have made fire decks massively strong for a while now. There's still more tools that will now make them even better. While Heat Factory Prism Star has been the main stadium for these decks, Giant Hearth just made the ability to grab the Energy you need for Welder even easier than ever before.

These general combination of cards are going to be seen in a lot of decks, even potentially those that aren't fire decks. Rainbow Brush can create opportunities to switch out Energies if needed. Not to mention two Fire Energies work just fine as a Double Colorless Energy equivalent. Then you can draw three cards after? Easily recover the Energy once knocked out as well? We have many decks in general to discuss but we had to mention these cards because simply put they power a majority of the decks we expect to see.

Reshiram & Charizard GX

Reshiram & Charizard-GX UNB 20

There is a reason that more points have been scored using this deck than any other before worlds despite it only coming out recently. This deck manages to pile on some insane damage insanely fast. With our new additions to the fire power core we showed off earlier it has been given the ability to go even more overboard than ever before. To be fair the deck has lost a few things too. Outside of Pokemon searching cards, there are things like the combination of Kiawe and Tapu Lele-GX on turn one that are out of the running now. In terms of the former, Cherish Ball is around to help bring out your major attacker fast if needed. 

There's lots of variety available with this deck as well. To avoid water decks stopping them as hard, some play Eevee & Snorlax-GX which can also be powered by the fire power core. Volcanion UNB 25, Turtonator DRM 50, Arcanine UNB 22, and Flareon-GX can all be used in variants as well for differing degrees of strategy. Also, it can't be forgotten that with Guzma no longer in the picture Ninetales TEU 16 becomes fantastic for use in this deck. Overall do not be surprised to see many trying pilot a version of this deck at the event.

Blacephalon 

Blacephalon-GX LOT 52 Blacephalon UNB 32 (RH)

With a big bunch of fire power at their backs does it come as any surprise that we need to mention this deck? The Non-GX version of Blacephalon, commonly known as Baby Blacephalon, took third place at the International Columbus, OH and the GX version has still seen success placing at several other events as well. There's just about no way we don't see someone trying to give these decks a try at the event. However, we expect it is more likely we'll see the GX version of the deck. This is because with Cherish Ball, Ultra Space, and Mysterious Treasure still legal it will be far easier to get Pokemon out onto the field as there is a lot less Pokemon search.

However, there's a serious counter here that may end up with fewer players trying to run with it. Tapu Fini UNM 53 is almost a direct counter to these decks. It can easily be put into any deck, as it only takes a single colorless Energy to use its attack Nature Wave against these Ultra Beasts to get a quick one-hit knockout. Tapu Fini may be teched into several decks, but we still expect to see Blacephelon see some play one way or another.

Unown Salazzle

Unown LOT 91 (RH) Salazzle UNB 31 (RH)

Before we leave our fire decks behind, we have to take a look at one more deck that can't be ignored as a possible surprise deck coming in and making a splash. A large part of our fire power core still works here, though you might want to leave behind Fiery Flint. This deck focuses on using Salazzle's ability Roast Reveal to draw three cards. This alongside things like Welder, Heat Factory Prism Star, and Giant Hearth can fill up your hand very quickly. Using Fire Crystal, Energy Recycle System, or even Brock's Grit to get discarded Energy back into the deck to draw tons of cards and pull out a win using Unown LOT 91. Oh, and did we mention using Lt. Surge's Strategy alongside cards like Looker and Looker Whistle? Oh yeah, this deck could roll FAST!

This deck has a lot of potential. You could use Salandit DRM 13 or Salandit Salandit PR-SM SM154 to make the deck work with Professor Elm's Lecture or pull out Salandit UNM 98 so Mysterious Treasure could come into play. Either way, we expect someone to give this deck consideration and we may see it go far in the tournament. 

Slowly The Gong Rings

Slowking LOT 55Dewgong UNB 45Slowbro UNB 43

With so much potential for crazy fire decks to run rampant, there's no wonder we should be able to expect the possibilities that a water deck could rise up to try and take the tournament. The funny thing about all of these choices, however, is they still use the firepower core we mentioned earlier! These cards can all utilize Triple Acceleration Energy which is really helpful. Slowking's Psychic can really hit Pokemon with a lot of Energy if it's hitting for weakness. Dewgong's Dual Blizzard has already been used to great success, sniping out 60 HP Pokemon that are more prevalent with Professor Elm's Lecture being some of the most powerful Pokemon search at the moment.

Finally, we had to mention Slowbro. Listen, yes this could make you lose a game at random. However, out of all the water Pokemon we have suggested, it has the potential to deal the most damage even without weakness damage. With this in mind and the wild nature of this event, there's still a shot we might see someone bring it out for a spin. Maybe even some mad player uses Pyukumuku UNB 53!

Weezing Spread

Weezing UNB 74

Double Colorless Energy is gone but Weezing can still run with fire power! True there's potential for it to run with Malamar FLI 51 as well but we'll talk about that likely in Part Two! Part of what makes Weezing Spread so tempting are the large nuber of Tag Team decks we'll likely see at the event. With all these Basic Pokemon around there's a lot of potential to put on that damage! The real issue here is with Fire Energy being used Tapu Lele UPR 94 has a harder time being used to swap around energy. With the Psychic version no longer legal post rotation, Malamar loses the advantage using it here. There's no Counter Energy either! So what do we do? 

There's potential to try and use Grimsley maybe even combined with Lt. Surge's Strategy but that would be tough. Banette-GX could also try and help, but it's only a single damage counter and it has to be in the active so that would take a lot more investment to work with. Rainbow Energy might simply be the best option here.

With the classic Tapu Koko PR-SM SM30 gone we have to find another low retreat Pokemon to spread damage. Noivern UNM 159 could actually work well, especially with the synergy Mysterious Treasure can provide. It does have to evolve, but it's not the worst choice for spread damage. It only takes a single Energy as well which is always a boon! You could even just use Fan Rotom and actually power it up. Overall this deck would have to make some changes but there are still ways to make it work with a firepower build.

Tool Drop

Doublade TEU 108 

Tool Drop hasn't made much of a splash in tournaments yet. Charlie Lockyer was able to get 50th place with it at the Columbus, OH International but that doesn't seem like a wild placement right? With so many Fire decks running around it might feel like any Steel Type deck is doomed to fail but it's simply not true. With the rotation looming and the fire power core making for some serious draw power this deck cannot be ignored. Using a card like Jasmine to set up your Genesect-GX, Honedge TEU 107 and maybe some Jirachi TEU 99 could have you ready to rumble faster than any other deck currently in the format. Pokemon search being so reduced for other decks makes for some incredible possibilities if you can swarm the opponent fast! 

Adventure Bag can grab tools incredibly fast, and thinning out all the Energy from your deck will make finding even more tools a faster experience. Blizzard Town could help for those turns you can't quite manage the OHKO but need to stall the opponent as well. 

Blissey

Blissey LOT 153

Drew Kennet was able to get a Blissey deck to 25th place at the Columbus, OH Internationals surprising quite a few people with this coin flip based rogue deck. Still it makes plenty of sense going into worlds to give it an attempt as well. While likely being stuck using Pokemon Fan Club for Pokemon search alongside other cards post-rotation it still has the potential to cleave into opponents with massive swaths of damage! Adding a Triple Acceleration Energy into the mix and you can end up with the OHKO on almost anything with some luck. 

Rolling Rogue?

Miltank LOT 158 Lickilicky UNM 162Silvally-GX PR-SM SM91

There's still a few more Pokemon that could be powered up with the fire power build that we think are worth mentioning. While we're not as likely to see these as some of the others, we do think these decks need to at least be considered. Most have a weakness to Fighting Types which isn't the best right now, but still could work. let's give these a quick look!


This is just the beginning of potential decks we may see at the event! In Part Two, we'll be taking a look more at individual typed decks, seeing the best potential for Water Decks, Fairy Decks, Fighting Decks, and more! Did we miss any other decks you think could really work with this fire power concept? Tell us in the comments below or grill the grill over on Twitter @LiteralGrill. Until next time, stay lit trainers! 

- Linnea 'LiteralGrill' Capps


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