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Searching Standard: Palossand / Alolan Muk Deck

Hello and welcome to another episode of Searching Standard. This week I have a deck for you that features a win condition based on discarding cards from your opponent's deck. We're only about a month away from Standard rotation, so for the next few articles, I'll try to point out which cards will be rotating from the decks I feature and I'll try to give suggestions for replacements. Let's get started.

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This deck's main route to victory is by attacking with Palossand RCL 82's Sand Sink attack. Doing so will discard the top card from your opponent's deck (hereafter, I'll refer to discarding card(s) from your opponent's deck as 'milling' your opponent). If you happen to have a Cursed Shovel RCL 157 attached to Palossand RCL 82, its Sand Sink attack will 'mill' three cards instead. When you consider that an opponent's deck will have a maximum of 47 cards in it (starting deck size of 60 cards; 7 cards in hand at the beginning of the game; 6 cards placed as Prize cards), being able to 'mill' three cards with each attack is quite a lot. Ultimately, you might not need to 'mill' their entire deck, but just enough cards to make it so that they're unable to do anything of consequence for the remainder of the game.

Having Cursed Shovel RCL 157 attached to Palossand RCL 82 also allows you to 'mill' an additional two cards if that Palossand RCL 82 is Knocked Out by damage from an opponent's attack. That's even extra value from Cursed Shovel RCL 157.

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When you evolve into Alolan Muk TEU 84, you'll be able to use its Adventurous Appetite Ability to remove additional cards from your opponent's deck. While you might come up empty sometimes and find no Item cards within the top six cards of the opponent's deck, other times you find one or more. The Item cards you find get placed into the opponent's discard pile and are one less card you'll need to 'mill'.

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Ditto Prism Star LOT 154 can be used to evolve into either Palossand RCL 82 or Alolan Muk TEU 84. Unfortunately, Ditto Prism Star LOT 154 will rotate from Standard soon. While there's not a real replacement for it, you might consider exchanging it with a copy of Pokemon Communication TEU 152, which can help find a Pokemon you need.

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The majority of the time, when you play Bellelba & Brycen-Man CEC 186, you'll only want to 'mill' each player of their top three cards. It will be rare that you'll want to discard three cards to force each player to reduce their amount of Benched Pokemon down to three, but for those times when you need to do it, you'll be glad to have the option.

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This grouping of cards all help you find the Pokemon you need when you need them. Evolution Incense SSH 163 can only find an Evolution Pokemon, while Quick Ball SSH 179 can only find a Basic Pokemon. Great Ball SSH 164 can find either type, but is limited to searching through the top seven cards of your deck. Keep these limitations in mind when using these cards.

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Lillie's Poke Doll CEC 197 is a great way to stall things while you're getting set up. When it's your Active Pokemon, your opponent must waste an attack in order to get rid of it, and they get no Prize card for doing so. Once you're all set up, you can discard all cards attached to it and put it on the bottom of your deck, allowing you to move up a Pokemon that's ready for battle.

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With Scoop Up Net RCL 165, you'll be able to evolve into Alolan Muk TEU 84 additional times, allowing you the potential to remove additional Item cards from their deck. You can also use Scoop Up Net RCL 165 as a means of rescuing a Pokemon that's vulnerable to being Knocked Out if they suffer another attack.

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With Ordinary Rod SSH 171, you'll be able to shuffle up to two Pokemon from your discard pile back into your deck. You won't be able to shuffle back any Energy, though, since all of the Energy in this deck are Special Energy cards.

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Switch SSH 183 allows you the opportunity to exchange places with your Active Pokemon and a Pokemon from your Bench. This can be especially useful when your Active Pokemon has taken some damage and will be Knocked Out if another attack damages them.

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All Pokemon decks need ways to replenish their hands once all of the useful cards they've drawn have been played. That's what this group of cards is for. Of note, Cynthia UPR 119 will be rotating from Standard. My suggestion for replacing her is to use Kabu from the upcoming Darkness Ablaze expansion. Kabu allows you to shuffle your hand into your deck and draw 4 cards, but if you only have 1 Pokemon in play, you'll draw 8 cards instead.

Wrapping Up

If you enjoy playing decks that feature alternate ways to win, you should give this deck a try. While there is a couple of cards that will be rotating, the key cards remain in Standard and replacements for those card can be found.

What do you think of this deck? Do you have any suggestions for improvements? Let me know by leaving a comment below. 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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