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Searching Standard: Steelix Budget Deck

Hello and welcome to another episode of Searching Standard. This week I have a deck for you that has the potential of attacking for 400 damage that also happens to be easy on your budget. Let's get started by taking a look at the deck.

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With Steelix CEC 139's Thumping Fall attack, you'll deal 50 damage for each Pokemon that you discard from your hand that has a Retreat Cost of four. That gives you the potential of Knocking Out any Pokemon your opponent might throw at you.

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This batch of Pokemon all happens to have a Retreat Cost of four. They also happen to all be Stage 1 Pokemon, so you won't have to worry about them when you draw your starting hand. You'll never be able to play them to your Bench. The only thing they'll be used for is to deal damage with Steelix CEC 139's Thumping Fall attack.

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This deck needs to have a way of drawing extra cards. That's where Snorlax VIV 131's Gormandize Ability comes in. By making Snorlax VIV 131 your Active Pokemon, you'll be able to replenish your hand up to seven cards. Using this Ability will end your turn, but it will also help you find the Pokemon you need that has a Retreat Cost of four more easily.

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Oricorio-GX CEC 95 also helps you draw additional cards, thanks to its Dance of Tribute Ability. If a Pokemon of yours was Knocked Out during your opponent's previous turn, you can draw an extra three cards. There's only a single copy of Oricorio-GX CEC 95 in this deck to help minimize drawing it as your only starting Basic Pokemon.

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Since this deck runs on having access to Pokemon that have a Retreat Cost of four, you'll want ways of finding those Pokemon without having to rely on the blind luck of drawing them. Poke Maniac UNM 204 allows you to search your deck for up to three of these Pokemon. Nessa VIV 157 allows you to put up to four Water Type Pokemon from your discard pile into your hand. That's the reason all of our Pokemon that have a Retreat Cost of four are Water Type Pokemon. Ordinary Rod SSH 171 can be used to shuffle up to two Pokemon from your discard pile into your deck. All of these cards can help make sure you have access to the Pokemon you need in order to deal damage.

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With the needs of this deck falling into the hands of its Supporters so much, being able to play those Supporters multiple times can really help. Pal Pad SSH 172 allows you to shuffle up to two Supporters from your discard pile into your deck, so you can use them again in the future.

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Both Evolution Incense SSH 163 and Great Ball SSH 164 allow you the means of finding the Pokemon you need more smoothly. You can ensure that you'll be able to evolve Onix CEC 105 into Steelix CEC 139 with their help. Scoop Up Net RCL 165 helps you return a copy of either Onix CEC 105 or Steelix CEC 139 to your hand, so you can discard them for damage (since they also have a Retreat Cost of four). You can also use it to return Snorlax VIV 131 to your hand from the Active Position on the turn after you use its Gormandize Ability.

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Both Boss's Orders RCL 154 and Bird Keeper DAA 159 allow you to choose what Pokemon is in the Active Position. The difference is that Boss's Orders RCL 154 works on your opponent's side of the arena, while Bird Keeper DAA 159 works on yours. Use Boss's Orders RCL 154 to set up a massive attack on an opponent's Pokemon VMAX or Pokemon-GX, and take multiple Prize cards when you Knock it Out. Use Bird Keeper DAA 159 as a way of making sure you have a healthy Steelix CEC 139 to attack with, or as a way of swapping a Steelix CEC 139 from your Bench with an Active Snorlax VIV 131.

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With Lt. Surge's Strategy UNB 178, you'll have the ability to play multiple copies of 3 Poke Maniac UNM 204 and Nessa VIV 157 in the same turn, allowing you to be able to discard up to eight Pokemon with a Retreat Cost of four. This makes it possible to deal out 400 damage in a single turn, although you'll likely never need to deal more than 350 damage at once.  Chaotic Swell CEC 187 allows you to remove a Stadium your opponent has in play, and prevent another one from being played.

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A brief note about the Energy in this deck... All of it provides colorless Energy, so there will be attacks that Steelix CEC 139 and Oricorio-GX CEC 95 have that you'll never be able to use. That's okay, though, because Twin Energy RCL 174 and Triple Acceleration Energy UNB 190 make it easier to use your attacks like Steelix CEC 139's Thumping Fall attack that require multiple Energy. The playset of Capture Energy RCL 171 are included to help ensure that you can find Onix CEC 105, in the event that you have to start without one. They can also help you find your main card-drawing engine, Snorlax VIV 131.

Wrapping Up

This deck looks like a lot of fun to play. You will need to maximize your attacks and try to take multiple Prize cards whenever possible, though, since it can be possible to run out of Pokemon in your hand to discard for damage. This is also a relatively inexpensive deck to put together, and it offers a different style of play than other decks.

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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