One of the most annoying decks i ever played against… Therefore i just had to try and review it.
This deck has some nice tricks up its sleeve thanks to some cheeky item cards and some very interesting attacks and abilities. It has shown to be strong as it has achieved nice results in several tournaments for a pretty long period of time. But how does it compare in the current meta?
This deck mainly is strong because it can make good use of your opponent’s moves. Zoroark will do more damage the more benched Pokémon your opponent has. Yveltal EX will do more damage on Pokémon that have energy attached to them. Moreover, the very special attack of Zoroark BREAK called “Foul Play” allows you to use any attack of your opponent’s active Pokémon for the cost of one single energy. Yet, because these attacks makes use of your opponent’s moves, your opponent can adjust his playstyle by using as little benched Pokémon and as little energy as possible to make things quite difficult for you. Furthermore, in comparison to a lot of other decks the build up is rather slow, and the damage output can be a bit limited. But, this is where Dangerous Energy and Bursting Balloon will help.
The deck revolves around the following three cards:
Zoroark – 91/162
Zoroark can do a high amount of damage for one single DCE with the “Mind Jack” attack. The more benched Pokémon your opponent uses, and most of them do because of Shaymins/Hoopas, the more damage it does. Usually providing for a two-shot knockout. Moreover, his ability “Stand In” allows you to switch Zoroark with your active Pokémon at any given time. Yveltal EX has a pretty high retreat cost, so this ability will save you paying the energy for retreat costs as well.
Zoroark will cost you about 2-3 packs to get online and about $ 6 in real life.
Zoroark BREAK – 92/162
This is the card that adds the “Sneaky” factor to the deck. For one single energy card, Zoroark BREAK is allowed to use any attacks of your opponent’s active Pokémon. This way, you can use powerful high energy cost attacks against your opponent’s strongest Pokémon. Without having to actually setting the attack up, Energy wise.
Zoroark BREAK will cost you about 3 packs to get online and about $ 5 in real life.
Yveltal EX – XY150
Zoroark does more damage based on your opponent’s benched Pokémon, Yveltal EX will do more damage for the amount of energy attached to both Pokémon. Therefore, you damage will go up in either cases, and most decks either play a lot of Energy or play alot of Benched Pokémon, or even both! Furthermore, you can save the Energy on Yveltal EX and attach them to one of your benched Pokémon if you feel that 90 damage is enough, or are afraid of losing Yveltal EX next turn due to a potential knockout.
Yveltal EX will cost you 3-4 packs to get online and about $ 5 in real life.
To summarize, increase your damage with Zoroark by either a largely filled bench of your opponent, or using your opponent’s attacks with Zoroark BREAK for a single energy cost. Moreover, use Yveltal EX to increase your damage based on the energy amount on your opponent’s Pokémon. Lastly, compensate for the the lack of one-shot KO’s and the pretty slow build up with Bursting balloons and Darkness energy.
This can be defined as a “budget deck” as the cost of most cards is considerably low. Only Zoroark is a bit more expensive, but still low cost in comparison to other key cards used in most other decks. To make the cost even lower, the decklist includes Octillery instead of Shaymin EX. You could also use 2 or 3 Shaymin EX’s, but that would make the deck a lot more expensive to build both online and offline and not necessarily more effective.
Full Deck List
Being annoying with “counterdamage” and using your opponent’s moves to your advantages are the two most noteworthy premises of this deck. Therefore, the main strengths of the deck are: Surprise, Versatility and Survivablity.
Because of the low cost attacks and the amount of damage they can do out of nowhere, your opponent will be often caught off-guard, leading to situations which he/she could not predict, unless being a highly skilled player. For example, your opponent could be benching two Shaymins and some other Pokémon only to find out he/she is increasing your damage output. Moreover, the ability of Zoroark to just jump in at any given time, can also be quite surprising for your opponent. Lastly, this isn’t a particularly popular deck, and it can beat any deck out there, which means that your opponent most likely will have a deck that is build to deal with the more popular decks, which this deck isn’t. And will, therefore be surprised having to play against it.
You would think that this would actually be a weakness of the deck, as the HP of Zoroark isn’t particularly high. 140 HP for a BREAK card isn’t that high either. Moreover, not using the popular Fighting Fury belt is also not in favor of the HP of Yveltal EX. Yet, the dangerous Energy and Bursting balloons force your opponent to make decisions, either allowing you more time to set up, or damaging his/her own active Pokémon severely which often leads to a possible knockout the next turn for you.
Being able to use the attacks of your opponent for one single energy is what makes this deck versatile. Pull out your opponent’s strongest pokémon and use their own attacks against them for a single energy. The only downside to this is specific energy based attacks aren’t useable. For example, Raikou or Flareon EX do more damage for more Lighting/Fire energy, which will not help Zoroark BREAK at all.
Every deck has their strengths, but unfortunately (and especially fortunately) also their weaknesses. For this deck, these are the following; Special energy removal cost opponents and high damage.
Special energy removal
This deck relies heavily on Special energy for both offensive and defensive purposes. Therefore, if your opponent has energy removal like Enhanced Hammer, or Team Magma Grunt, or even attacks that can remove Special Energy like Scizor EX/ M Scizor EX, things will become very difficult.
Bursting Balloon and Dangerous energy do make things difficult for your opponent, but there are some Pokémon that have extremely high damage with a low energy cost. Especially some Mega Pokémon and in particular M Mewtwo, have such attacks. They will most likely knockout your Pokémon with one hit. And getting up enough Pokémon to overcome these knockouts can be very hard. Therefore, this deck isn’t very strong against these particular decks, and this is probably the reason why it isn’t as popular since the Mega cards are being used more and more frequently.
The difficulty of playing this deck is “Intermediate”.
As usual, we use DarkIntegralGaming his amazing videos to give guidance as to how-to-play a specific deck. Even though this deck is fine-tuned the way i personally like it best, it gives a good overview as to how the deck works and how to play it.
This deck can pretty much beat any deck if played the right way and your opponent isn’t too well informed about how the deck works. On the other hand, if you face an opponent that knows exactly what to do to counter your attacks, things might get a bit difficult. Moreover, Mega Pokémon often have the upper hand as well. Nonetheless, the deck is really fun to play with and quite versatile thanks to the attack of Zoroark BREAK, and the ability to use the attacks of your opponent very cheaply, and is therefore recommended!
+ Surprising high damage for low energy cost
– Special energy removal
– High damage
Next Deck Review: Rainbow Road
Previous Deck Review: M Mewtwo EX / Weavile
Looking to buy the cards to build this deck? You can find the cards here!
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