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Searching Standard: ADP / Zacian V Deck

Hello and welcome to another episode of Searching Standard. A couple of weekends ago, major tournaments took pace in Santiago, Perth, and Guatemala. At all of these events, decks featuring Arceus & Dialga & Palkia-GX and Zacian V took home First Place. In fact, the majority of decks in the Top Eight at each of these events were very similar builds of ADP / Zacian V decks. But there was one build that was a bit more unique. This week, we'll be taking a look at that ADP / Zacian V build, which took Fifth Place at the Perth event. Let's get started by taking a look at the deck.

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This deck combines the speed that Zacian V SSH 138 offers with the extra damage that Arceus & Dialga & Palkia-GX CEC 156 provides with its Altered Creation GX attack. Altered Creation GX can also allow you to take an extra Prize card when you Knock Out an opponent's Active Pokemon. These two Pokemon are the main attackers in this deck and can do a good job of dealing damage quickly.

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When you evolve into Alolan Ninetales-GX LOT 132, you'll be able to search your deck for any two Item cards to add to your hand.  This is a great way to make sure you have a pair of Custom Catcher LOT 171s so you can set up a favorable attack. Alolan Ninetales-GX LOT 132 also is a great bit of tech as it is an Evolution Pokemon, so it can still take out an opponent's Galarian Obstagoon SSH 119 as well as spread damage to your opponent's Benched Pokemon.

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Absol TEU 88's Dark Ambition Ability is a great way to keep a Pokemon that you've moved from your opponent's Bench to their Active position in place. You can also use the Shadow Seeker attack to deal a fair amount of damage when you attack as well.

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Mimikyu TEU 112 is a great Pokemon to have on your Bench, powered up and waiting to become Active. By using its Copycat attack the turn after another Pokemon of yours gets Knocked Out by a large attack, you'll be able to get a little payback. While it's basically only useful once, it can be a great way to finish an opponent off.

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While it's unlikely that you'll want to attack with Dedenne-GX UNB 57, thanks to the inclusion of Rainbow Energy CES 151, it's at least possible. More than likely, though, Dedenne-GX UNB 57 will be played to your Bench for its Dedechange Ability, allowing you to discard your hand and draw a new one of six cards.

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Speaking of ways to draw additional cards, both Professor's Research SSH 178 and Marnie SSH 169 do just that. Playing Marnie SSH 169 has the added benefit of shaking up the cards in your opponent's hand and possibly leaving them with fewer options than they had before.

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Every deck needs some ways to find the Pokemon it wants to get into play. That's what Quick Ball SSH 179 and Cherish Ball UNM 191 are included for. Each of these balls has certain restrictions to keep in mind, though. With Quick Ball SSH 179, you'll only be able to find a Basic Pokemon, while Cherish Ball UNM 191 can only search for a Pokemon-GX.

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This next batch of cards all help keep the Energy you need to run smoothly flowing. Energy Spinner UNB 170 helps find the Energy from your deck, while Metal Saucer SSH 170 finds it in your discard pile. Energy Switch SSH 162 is a great way to keep the Energy you have attached to your Pokemon in play able to be used in the event that you're about to suffer a Knock Out.

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Combat tricks allow you to gain the advantage during a game. Both Custom Catcher LOT 171 and Great Catcher CEC 192 allow you to switch your opponent's Active Pokemon with one from their Bench, while Switch SSH 183 does the same with your own team. You can use these cards to set up attacks that will score an easy Knock Out, allowing you to draw more Prize cards than your opponent.

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If you do happen to find yourself behind in the Prize card race, Reset Stamp UNM 206 can help you out. It will slow down your opponent's momentum and allow you time to catch up.

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With Air Balloon SSH 156, you have the ability for any Pokemon on your team to have a Retreat Cost of one or zero. This can allow you to retreat a wounded Pokemon before your opponent can knock it out and draw a Prize card. Vitality Band SSH 185 allows your attacks to deal ten more damage to the opponent's Active Pokemon. That extra damage can often be just enough for you to get a Knock Out one turn sooner than you would if you didn't have the Vitality Band SSH 185 attached.

Wrapping Up

It's no secret that Arceus & Dialga & Palkia-GX CEC 156 / Zacian V SSH 138 decks are top tier. This deck proves that all forms of this deck don't have to be carbon copies of each other to perform well.

What do you think of this deck? Do you have any suggestions for improvements? Let me know by leaving a comment below or email me directly at mikelikesmtg@gmail.com. Also, check out my other column, Flash Forward, where we take a look at decks using cards from upcoming releases. 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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