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Searching Standard: 34 Water Energy / Gyarados Deck

Hello and welcome to another episode of Searching Standard. With decks featuring Blacephalon-GX LOT 52 and Reshiram & Charizard-GX UNB 20 doing so well at recent tournaments, we need an answer to these hard-hitting Fire Type decks. While viewing decklists on poke-cardmanjr.com, I came across the following decklist that might be the answer I've been looking for. Let's take a look at the deck.

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Gyarados TEU 30 might be the answer we've all been looking for. While this Stage 1 Pokemon only has 150 HP and a Weakness to Lightning Type Pokemon, the fact that it can easily attack for up to 240 damage makes this heavy-hitter a huge threat. Distilled Blast is the attack to which I'm referring. Since over half of this deck is Water Energy 3, you should be able to deal out on average 90 to 120 damage per attack, and when that's doubled due to Weakness, knocking out opposing Fire Type Pokemon should be a breeze.

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Alolan Vulpix GRI 21 works behind the scenes and is the unsung hero of this deck. With its Beacon attack, you can find Magikarp CIN 17 and Gyarados TEU 30 with ease, and all for zero energy. Using this attack also helps thin your deck of non-Water Energy 3 cards, so you're more likely to reveal more copies of Water Energy 3 when you use Gyarados TEU 30's Distilled Blast attack. You'll likely never want to place the energy needed to use Alolan Vulpix GRI 21's Icy Snow attack.

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Because of the number of Water Energy 3 cards in this deck, you're pretty likely to draw some. Since your main attacker (Gyarados TEU 30) only needs a single energy attached to it to use Distilled Blast, you probably will have some Water Energy 3 cards hanging out in your hand that you don't need. With Crasher Wake FLI 104, you can discard two Water Energy 3 cards to get any two other cards from your deck and put them into your hand. This is another way to thin your deck of the non-Water Energy 3 cards. It also allows you to look at your deck, so you can figure out which cards are your Prize cards and just how many non-Water Energy 3 cards remain in the deck.

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With Professor Elm's Lecture LOT 188 you'll be able to search for Alolan Vulpix GRI 21 and Magikarp CIN 17, which is another way to thin your deck. It's a great way to get things started if your only beginning Pokemon is Magikarp CIN 17 and you haven't been able to find a copy of Gyarados TEU 30.

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Brooklet Hill GRI 120 is another great card that can get the ball rolling if you start off slowly. Remember that you only have eight Basic Pokemon in this deck, so if you've already been able to look through your deck and account for all of them, you might find that it's better not to play this card since it works for both you and your opponent. Don't give the opponent a bonus if you're not able to utilize it as well for yourself.

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Since there's only one main attacker in this deck, you'll want to make sure you have a Gyarados TEU 30 ready for battle at all times. With Rescue Stretcher GRI 130, you're able to return to your hand a Gyarados TEU 30 or Magikarp CIN 17 that has been knocked out. It also helps you get these cards back if they get discarded by making a Distilled Blast and they are revealed. It's pretty unlikely that you'll ever use Rescue Stretcher GRI 130 to shuffle three Pokemon back into your deck, since you'll want to keep your deck thinned of non-Water Energy 3 cards as much as possible.

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The fact that this deck has the potential to deal 240 damage with an attack that requires only one Energy means that it can one-hit knockout many opposing Pokemon. For those times that you need a little extra damage to knock out an opponent's Active Pokemon-GX, you have Choice Band GRI 121. This can really help you if you find yourself up against a stall deck, especially those using Magikarp & Wailord-GX PR-SM SM166, since your damage won't be doubled due to Weakness.

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If your opponent has been holding a Pokemon back on their Bench in order to build it up, you can use Pokemon Catcher SUM 126 as a way to switch their Active Pokemon with the Pokemon they're trying to build up. It's possible to get a quick knock out by doing this, but Pokemon Catcher SUM 126 isn't the most reliable card to use since it requires a successful coin flip, so don't count on this trick always working.

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Samuel Taylor Coleridge said it best in his poem, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, when he said "Water, water everywhere, / Nor any drop to drink." This deck has a ton of water, but it's all used for attacking. Most Pokemon decks only have a handful of Energy cards, while this one has a ton. If you're new to the TCG, this deck is far from normal, so don't use it as a guideline when building your own decks. Also, if you're into blinging out your decks, you might want to skip this one. Not only is Water Energy CIN 124 pretty expensive, but it will also be difficult to find 34 copies available.

Wrapping Up

If your local meta has a lot of Fire Type decks, try playing this deck. You'll have quite an advantage against those decks. However, even against a deck that doesn't have a Weakness to water, this deck can hold its own thanks to the amount of damage you can do for a single energy.

Thank you to the folks at poke-cardmanjr.com for posting this decklist.

What do you think of this deck? Do you have any suggestions for improvements? Let me know by leaving a comment below or you can reply to me directly on Twitter (@mikelikesmtg), or email me directly at mikelikesmtg@gmail.com. Also, feel free to share this article with your friends anywhere on social media.  And be sure to join me here again next week as I continue my search for innovative decks in the Pokemon TCG. I'll see you then!
 
— Mike Likes
 


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