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Searching Standard: Hatterene / Purugly Deck

Hello and welcome to another episode of Searching Standard. For this week's deck, we'll be taking a look at a deck that hopes to limit your opponent's options. We'll get started by taking a look at the decklist.

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With Hatterene RCL 85's Mind Hat Ability, we'll be able to force our opponent to discard a card from their hand each turn, as long as we do the same. You'll want to do this as often as possible to keep your opponent at a disadvantage, but you'll also want to keep enough cards in your hand to play out your team and be able to attack. Remember that Hatterene RCL 85 will need to stay on your Bench whenever possible, since you'll never be able to attack with it.

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Purugly UNB 160's Stray Cat Dash will be the main attack for this deck. When you use it, you'll be able to discard a card at random from your opponent's hand. If you've evolved into Purugly UNB 160 this turn, you'll discard two of their cards instead of one. It's important to try to get this extra bonus to limit the cards in your opponent's hand since this attack only deals 30 damage each time you use it.

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The Jirachi TEU 99 / Escape Board UPR 122 will certainly be missed when Escape Board UPR 122 rotates out of Standard, but since that doesn't happen for a little while longer, we might as well enjoy it while it's still here. Use Jirachi TEU 99's Stellar Wish Ability to help find the Trainer cards you need, then retreat for free thanks to having an Escape Board UPR 122 attached.

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This next group of cards allows you to find a specific type of Pokemon from your deck. Each has a limitation on the type of Pokemon you can find. Evolution Incense SSH 163 only finds an Evolution Pokemon. Quick Ball SSH 179 only allows you to find a Basic Pokemon. With Mysterious Treasure FLI 113, you can find either a Basic Pokemon or an Evolution Pokemon, but you can only find a Psychic Type Pokemon (in this deck). Keep the limitations in mind when searching for the Pokemon you need.

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Unlike the previous cards that had a limitation on the type of Pokemon we could find, Great Ball SSH 164 has no such limitations. Instead, you can use it to find any Pokemon you need, as long as that Pokemon is in the top seven cards of your deck.

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You'll want to use Rare Candy SSH 180 to evolve Hatterene RCL 85 into Hatenna RCL 83 faster than normal. This will allow you to begin discarding cards from your opponent's hand faster than if you had to evolve the usual way.

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This group of Supporters all allow you to draw additional cards, which is vital when playing the Pokemon TCG. Both Cynthia UPR 119 and Marnie SSH 169 have you shuffle your current hand back into your deck before drawing a new hand of cards, while your hand is simply discarded when you play Professor's Research SSH 178. Keep that in mind when deciding to play Professor's Research SSH 178 and make sure to play any relevant cards before Professor Magnolia comes into play.

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You can use Switch SSH 183 as a way of keeping your opponent's Pokemon from being able to attack. If you manage to discard enough Energy cards, your opponent might find themselves in a position where they only have enough Energy to power up one of their Pokemon. You can use Switch SSH 183 to send that Pokemon back to the Bench, moving up a Pokemon that will be unable to retreat. Or, use Switch SSH 183 to bring up a Pokemon from your opponent's Bench that they're building up for future attacks and knock it out before it can become fully powered.

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Since you'll be discarding cards from your hand, you might want to have a way to get some of those cards back. That's what Ordinary Rod SSH 171 is for. It offers you an additional way to utilize Purugly UNB 160 if it happens to get knocked out. Remember that there are no Basic Energy in this deck, though, so you won't be able to return any Energy cards from your discard pile with Ordinary Rod SSH 171.

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Some Pokemon, such as Dedenne-GX UNB 57 offer a way of drawing additional cards which work against the work you've been doing with this deck. For that reason, Power Plant UNB 183 has been included in this deck as a means of shutting of Abilities like this on all Pokemon-GX.

Wrapping Up

If you enjoy a challenge, you should give this deck a try. Keeping your opponent's options limited and controlling the pace of the game while slowly wearing down your opponent's Pokemon requires a good amount of skill to play optimally, but the rewards of winning with this deck make it very rewarding to play.

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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