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Searching Standard: Shock Lock with Spiders and Brock Deck

Hello and welcome to another episode of Searching Standard. As you may know, I'm always on the hunt for new and exciting decks to play. So, when I came across this week's decklist, which was posted to the PokeBeach Forums by a user named rewster1, I knew I had to share it. When you look at the cards included in the deck, you might be wondering how they all work together, but fear not, for I will explain everything in this article. Let's start by taking a look at the deck.

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To get things rolling with this deck, you'll want to ensure a steady stream of cards throughout the game. Swampert CES 35's Power Draw Ability is great for this. With it, you're able to discard a card of your choice from your hand in order to draw three additional cards. There are certain cards that you don't mind having in your discard pile, and I'll try to point them out as we discuss the deck further.

As you can see, the deck seems to be missing an evolutionary step between Mudkip CES 32 and Swampert CES 35. Certainly that can't be an oversight, right?

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Nope, it's not an oversight. Rare Candy CES 142 is an Item that allows any Basic Pokemon to evolve straight into a Stage 2 Pokemon, skipping its Stage 1 evolution entirely. It's also a great Item to get when you evolve Alolan Vulpix GRI 21 into Alolan Ninetales-GX LOT 132. While Rare Candy CES 142 isn't the only type of Item in this deck, it's the kind of card that you'll want to have in your hand when you need it, so make sure you get at least one when Alolan Ninetales-GX LOT 132 comes into play.

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Believe it or not, one of the main routes to victory with this deck is by using the Shady Move Ability of Chandelure GRI 13. With it, you can slowly move damage from your Pokemon onto your opponent's Pokemon. That's not to say that this is the only way to damage an opponent's Pokemon, but it's a great way to set up a KO that your opponent may be powerless to stop. Shady Move also allows you to move a damage counter from one of your opponent's Pokemon to another of their Pokemon. Shady indeed.

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Another big piece of this combo deck is Raichu BUS 41. When you evolve Pikachu CIN 30 into Raichu BUS 41 the Evoshock Ability will leave your opponent's Active Pokemon Paralyzed. The unfortunate thing is that Evoshock only happens when evolving into Raichu BUS 41, but there might be a way to reuse the ability. Maybe with our next Pokemon?

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Hydreigon CIN 62 has the Weed Out Ability which allows you to potentially discard up to two of your Benched Pokemon. By using this Ability, you can discard those Raichu BUS 41's that have already served their purpose when they Paralyzed your opponent's Active Pokemon. We'll see later on that there's a way to get those discarded Pokemon back into your deck so they can be played again.

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Ariados LOT 10 is the final piece of the puzzle and ties everything else together. With its Trapping Thread attack, you can lock your opponent's Active Pokemon in place, and if you can Paralyze it with Raichu BUS 41's Evoshock Ability, it will be stuck in place, a sitting duck. While there is one card that would allow them to still be able to retreat (Escape Board UPR 122 for those of you keeping score at home) as well as the potential to Evolve their Active Pokemon (which would also allow them to remove all Special Conditions), chances are likely that your opponent will not be able to change their Active Pokemon, allowing you to repeatedly attack it with Trapping Thread and continually moving a small amount of damage to other Pokemon on their team. This should allow you to set up some Benched Pokemon to KO before knocking out their Active Pokemon.

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Sea of Nothingness CIN 99 is another important piece to have in play to make sure your opponent can't remove the Paralysis from their Active Pokemon when they evolve. With Sea of Nothingness CIN 99 in play, a freshly-evolved Raichu BUS 41 on your Bench, and an Ariados LOT 10 that's able to attack with Trapping Thread as your Active Pokemon, your opponent's Active Pokemon will be very hard pressed to make it back to their Bench.

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Hau CES 132 and Whitney LOT 193 serve the role of card drawing Supporters in this deck. I'm honestly a little surprised why the traditional Standard all-star Lillie UPR 125 isn't in this deck in place of Hau CES 132, but I can understand how Whitney LOT 193 could add up to a ton of value as the game goes on.

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Both Nest Ball SUM 123 and Pokemon Communication TEU 152 are great ways to help you find the Pokemon you're missing to make your deck run smoothly. Nest Ball SUM 123 helps you find the Basic Pokemon you need to get your combo started, and Pokemon Communication TEU 152 helps you find the evolutions you need to keep the combo going. Pokemon Communication TEU 152 can also be used when you find yourself with duplicate Pokemon in your hand while still missing others.

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With so many pieces of your combo being included in small numbers, it's important for you to make sure that there's nothing stranded in your Prize cards that's also not still in your deck. That's where Gladion CIN 95 comes in. While it's inevitable that you'll have some of the cards from your combo in your Prizes, Gladion CIN 95 makes sure you always have access to things like Sea of Nothingness CIN 99, even though there's only a single copy of it in this deck.

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Guzma BUS 115 is currently such a Standard staple, I almost don't need to explain his inclusion. But I will anyway. Use Guzma BUS 115 to set up a favorable combat for yourself, or to switch out an opponent's Pokemon that would be knocked out with one more attack from Ariados LOT 10's Trapping Thread. You'll have to play smartly, though, since you'll have to switch your own Active Pokemon with one from your Bench as well. Make sure you have a backup Ariados LOT 10 in play for this if possible.

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Brock's Grit TEU 135 is the card that allows us to continually recycle our Raichu BUS 41 and Pikachu CIN 30. This deck has a very small amount of Energy (four, to be exact), and Brock's Grit TEU 135 can be very useful to recycle those as well, especially if you had to use a Guzma BUS 115 and needed to retreat the Pokemon that became your Active Pokemon with him.

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Lusamine CIN 96 is the final piece of the puzzle. She allows you to use Brock's Grit TEU 135 over and over, continually recycling the uses of Raichu BUS 41 and Pikachu CIN 30 and their Paralyzation. Don't forget that she can also get back your lone copy of Sea of Nothingness CIN 99 if it ever goes to your discard pile.

Wrapping Up

Just to reiterate how this deck works... Use Alolan Ninetales-GX LOT 132 to find a Rare Candy CES 142 to evolve Mudkip CES 32 into Swampert CES 35. Use Swampert CES 35's Power Draw Ability to draw through your deck while setting up a Chandelure GRI 13, a Pikachu CIN 30, a Hydreigon CIN 62, and an Ariados LOT 10 that has two Energy attached. If possible, get Sea of Nothingness CIN 99 into play. Make Ariados LOT 10 your Active Pokemon and then evolve Pikachu CIN 30 into Raichu BUS 41. This will Paralyze your opponent's Active Pokemon. Then use Hydreigon CIN 62's Weed Out Ability to discard your Raichu BUS 41 (where it can be shuffled back into your deck with Brock's Grit TEU 135). Use Chandelure GRI 13's Shady Move Ability to move damage to your opponent's Pokemon, trying to set up KO's wherever possible. Use your card drawing Supporters to get Raichu BUS 41 and Pikachu CIN 30 back into your hand so you can repeat the cycle on future turns. Use Lusamine CIN 96 as a way to continually get back Brock's Grit TEU 135 from your discard pile.

Yes, it's a very convoluted combo, but when it works, you should be able to lock your opponent out of the game. My only suggestion would be to add a copy of Faba LOT 173 to the deck, perhaps in place of one Nest Ball SUM 123) as a way to discard an opponent's Escape Board UPR 122, if they have one. Otherwise, I think this deck looks like a fun, challenging deck to play.

Thank you to PokeBeach Forum user rewster1 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. 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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