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Searching Standard: Solgaleo & Lunala-GX / Malamar Deck

Hello and welcome to another episode of Searching Standard. Cosmic Eclipse has been released so it's time to see what new goodies this set has to offer. This week I have for you a deck featuring the new Tag Team of Solgaleo & Lunala-GX CEC 75. I found this deck on Reddit, posted by a user named Cpt_Nightfall. The deck uses a very powerful engine to make use of discarded Energy that's been popular in the past. Let's get started by taking a look at the deck.

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Malamar FLI 51's Psychic Recharge Ability is what allows this deck to run smoothly. The more copies of Malamar FLI 51 you have on your bench, the more Psychic Energy 5 you can reuse from your discard pile. While it's best to use this Ability as often as possible, make sure that you're doing so with a plan in mind and not attaching Energy needlessly. It's fine to attach an Energy or two to a Pokemon whose attack requires four Energy, but once you commit to building up a Pokemon, stick with it until it's fully powered before attaching Energy elsewhere.

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With Solgaleo & Lunala-GX CEC 75, you have a basic Pokemon that can consistently deal 230 damage when it attacks with its Cosmic Burn attack. While you can only use Cosmic Burn ever other turn, Solgaleo & Lunala-GX CEC 75 does have the Light of the Protector GX attack that you can use if you find yourself in a position where you need to stall for a turn. However, just because Cosmic Burn has a drawback doesn't mean you'll only be able to attack every other turn. As long as you have a Malamar FLI 51 on your Bench, feel free to discard Psychic Energy 5 to pay the Retreat Cost, knowing that you can just reattach that same Energy right away.

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Blacephalon CEC 104's Fireworks Bomb attack allows you to precisely place damage counters wherever they can give you the best reward. If your opponent happens to have exactly three Prize cards remaining, you can almost assuredly score a Knock Out on one or two of your opponent's Pokemon. However, even without that extra damage, placing four damage counters wherever you would like can be enough. As you'll see later on, even one damage counter on an opponent's Pokemon could be enough to ruin their game plans.

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Malamar FLI 51 and Giratina LOT 97 have gone hand-in-hand ever since they were printed. With Giratina LOT 97's Distortion Door Ability allowing you to play it to your Bench from your Discard Pile, dealing two damage counters in the process, it's another great way to deal damage with pinpoint accuracy.

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Here's a pair of Pokemon that help you out in specific situations. Do you remember earlier when I mentioned that even a single damage counter on an opponent's Pokemon might ruin their plans? That's because of Mimikyu CEC 97's Shadow Box Ability. If your opponent is playing with a team of Pokemon-GX that rely on using their Abilities, Shadow Box can make it so that those plans are out the door. Mew UNB 76 has the Bench Barrier Ability, which protects all of your Benched Pokemon from taking damage from your opponent's attacks. Take that 'Spread' decks! Mew UNB 76 also has the Psypower attack that can be used in a pinch to put three damage counters on any of your opponent's Pokemon in play, regardless of whether they are the Active Pokemon or on their Bench.

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Next up is the often seen together pair of Jirachi TEU 99 and Escape Board UPR 122. If you're not familiar with this combo, Escape Board UPR 122 allows you to retreat your Jirachi TEU 99 after using its Stellar Wish Ability. Since Escape Board UPR 122 allows you to retreat even while Asleep, it pairs perfectly with Stellar Wish which puts Jirachi TEU 99 to sleep after using it.

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This group of Supporter cards is very helpful in allowing you to draw extra cards. Lillie UPR 125 is best at the start of the game, but is still very good even in later turns. Cynthia UPR 119 allows you to shuffle back in some cards that you might want at a later stage of the game and draws a fresh hand for you to use. Roller Skater CEC 203 helps you start getting Energy cards into your discard pile for Malamar FLI 51 to use later, while also allowing you to draw up to four cards.

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As we've already seen, Lillie's Full Force CEC 196 goes together nicely with Solgaleo & Lunala-GX CEC 75's Light of the Protector GX attack. It's also a great way to boost up your current hand. If you can't find uses for all of the cards you've drawn, you'll simply shuffle all but two of them back into your deck to use later on. Erika's Hospitality TEU 140 has the potential to be the best card drawing Supporter in the deck or the worst, depending on the amount of Pokemon your opponent has on their Bench.

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Most decks require having certain Pokemon in play to run smoothly. This deck is no exception. You can use Mysterious Treasure FLI 113 to find nearly any Pokemon you need from your deck. It also acts as a source of discard, allowing you to discard an all-important Psychic Energy 5 if possible. Pokémon Communication TEU 152 can be just the thing you need if you've drawn a Pokemon that is situational (like Mimikyu CEC 97 can be). By using Pokémon Communication TEU 152, you can trade that Mimikyu CEC 97 for something more useful from your deck.

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This next grouping of cards are all useful during attacks. With Great Catcher CEC 192, you can choose a Pokemon-GX from your opponent's Bench and swap it with their Active Pokemon. This can allow you to slow the game down by bringing up a Pokemon with attacks that have high Energy requirements or a high Retreat Cost. You can also bring up a Pokemon with a Weakness to Psychic Type Pokemon. Alternatively, bring up a Pokemon-GX that already has some damage on it so you can finish it off with your attack.

Switch CES 147 allows you to bring in a strong attacker from your Bench. With it, you can set up a Type advantage and score a quick Knock Out. You can also use it as a way to deny your opponent the opportunity to draw any Prize cards by sending a damaged Pokemon to your Bench.

Spell Tag LOT 190 can often act as a deterrent to your opponent attacking, because if they Knock Out the Pokemon that Spell Tag LOT 190 is attached to, they know that four damage counters are coming for their Pokemon in any way you choose. Spell Tag LOT 190 only works when a Psychic Type Pokemon it's attached to is Knocked Out, so make sure not to attach it to Jirachi TEU 99 by mistake.

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Sometimes you won't have a Psychic Energy 5 to spare when you need to discard a card. Other times, a Pokemon you need might get Knocked Out. For those situations, Lana's Fishing Rod CEC 195 is here to help. With it, you can shuffle a Pokemon and a Pokemon Tool from your discard pile back into your deck. There's only a single copy of Lana's Fishing Rod CEC 195 in the deck, so you'll have to choose wisely when deciding what to shuffle back into your deck.

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Viridian Forest TEU 156 is the final card in this deck that can help you get Psychic Energy 5 into your discard pile. The optimal play with Viridian Forest TEU 156 is to discard a Psychic Energy 5 from your hand and then put a Psychic Energy 5 from your deck into your hand. By doing this turn after turn, you're able to remove all of the Psychic Energy 5 from your deck and put it into your hand or discard pile for use later on. Be aware that, like all Stadium cards, your opponent will be able to search for the Energy they'll need as well when you have Viridian Forest TEU 156 in play.

Wrapping Up

Decks utilizing Malamar FLI 51's Psychic Recharge Ability have been around for a while now, and I don't expect them to go away. Using Energy from your discard pile is very powerful, and with good attackers like Solgaleo & Lunala-GX CEC 75, I'm sure many different decks will be tried with Malamar FLI 51 as the engine.

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. 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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