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Tag Team Pokemon TCG Podcast
Tag Team Pokemon TCG Podcast

Season 2, Episode 17 · 1 year ago

2-17. Rebels with a Cause

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co/ for more info on BLM causes

The boys are excited to discuss the results of the final Limitless qualifier! What are the top tier threats of Rebel Clash?! And what in the world is going on with the Player's Cup?!

What is that? Everybody, welcomeback to tag team, the POKEMON trading card games premier podcasting D my nameis Riley Hulbart, joined by my good, good friend JW creewall. JW,how are you doing today? Hey, I'm doing good, Riley. Thankyou for asking. We just yesterday finished Avatar, the last airbender onNetflix, and what treat with that? Your First Watch through of the show? It is my wife was addicted the whole time. She was just likeshe was. We went through it in like three days, but it wasmostly just her staying up till like zero in the morning watching, you know, major parts of the season. Wow. So, yeah, I did findyou know, I watched. I watched the big thing. I watchedenough to like understand the general plot. Shut there were like care like Iknew none of the Jet Arc oh no, so I was like so confused whenthis guy pulls up and you know, all the characters have, you know, this relationship with them. I don't know, it's just it waspretty funny. That's so. But yeah, that was that was the big excitementthis week in the creewall house. Very Nice, very nice. Thatshow is definitely one for the ages. I think that was a phenomenally doneshow, one of my favorites growing up, and it's still something that you canrevisit and appreciate as a as a you know, artistic medium and storywell, and they didn't overdo it. Three seasons worked out real nice.Didn't try to, you know, extend it for a long period of time, just kind of night fit nice and snug. Now it there's no otherstate. It's welcome. There's no depth to the characters, but not beinglike they weren't trying too hard to just like keep it going, keep italive. So I really appreciate it as a whole, really great piece art. Yeah, for sure. What's new with you, Riley? I've justbeen working real hard. Man Working real hard. A lot of stuff goingon in the you know, employed world, but I'm trudging along. It's it'sa taught me a lot of time management, to say the least.And but I think another important piece of that is knowing when to step away, especially when you're working from home right and like the line between your workand your personal life become increasingly blurred, especially, you know, now duringlike an epidemic, when it's you not really leaving as much in the firstplace. So it's lying gets increased, pleasingly blurred between your work hours andyour home you relax hours. and to me, I think something that I'velearned in the last couple weeks is, you know, knowing when it's justthe limit for the day, right, and not for sure self and overworkingyourself and being willing to say, you know, now it's time for youknow, to relax, to be me and a step away. Obviously,if there's obligations like those come first, but like yeah, yeah, ofcourse, but just to say, you know, you know what things needto be done, you do those and then exactly, just at the endof the day, it's your time, exactly exactly. I think. Ithink that's something that you can take into like all sorts of facets of life, right, is like you need to be able to carve out like timefor yourself and like have respect on yourself and that kind of way. Absolutelyso, Davy Jada or Chatton for the podcast, and we feel like there'sa lot going on right now. If you're unaware and we just feel theneed to actually say something. Granted, JW and I are two white men. You know, we're not. We're not qualified to speak to any detailson these subjects and we're aware of that. But what we do want to sayis, you know, tag team and our community and Pokemon is awhole is something. It built upon inclusivity and that's something that we've harped onin many episode now, and that obviously extends to not only people of Colorin general, but specifically to the black community, which has been dealt agreat deal of injustice over, you know, the course of American history. Sowe stand with you. Tag Team is with you all the way.Our whole community is with you and personally, I'm going to be donating all ofmy twitch earnings for my most recent twitch payout to black lives matter movements. So that's great. I just want to well said riling. So Ijust I don't think we need to, you know, stick on it toolong because we aren't the platform to consume that information, but I think inthe description for the podcast this week I'll include some links that you can checkout if you want to dig further into that and find more ways to supportthose movements. Absolutely. Yeah, I've been having these conversations with my wifea lot over the last couple days of what it means to have privilege andwhat it means to raise up those that are in a different situation, youknow systemically or you know otherwise, just that are in in low income situationsor just are oppressed in many of the...

...various ways that one can be oppressedin America today. And so just it's good to have these conversations again,like you said, I'm not the most qualified. I would point you andwe will point you to many resources that you know, you can take advantageof to look at to educate yourselves and others, and did just want tosay that we are in full support of the various movements that are going onright now and we wish the best for our black brothers and sisters and wejust we stand with you in solidarity. Absolutely, absolutely so. Again,you know, our community strong. I hope that you all reflect those valuesas well, because I think we've built up to really inclusive, positive communityin tag team, even within the niche at Pokemond, which is, youknow, has that sort of element of being inclusive. Stepping into the pokemonrealm of things from there there's been quite a bit going on in the prokemonworld as well, we've we just came off our limitless qualifier for JW rockingwith the Peka Ram in there, the final limitless qualifier before they're you know, actual invitational style event. So JW walk us through the peak a Ramexperience before we get into like the actual winners at this tournament. Yeah,well, I was really confused the night before, as I feel like Ialways am, but just really wanting to make a good showing in the lastqualifier. I'd kind of been, you know, I'm not going to putit all up to the lock, but just I had felt like in thelast couple of qualifiers like it just didn't quite go my way and I waslooking for a deck to play that was just ultra consistent, that I feltgood about and that had, you know, pretty good matchups against the field.And so I was really between Dragon Culter bliss cephalon the night before andI was trying to figure out, you know, and I was going onit over on the stream and just playing both decks and they really didn't callto me in any way. And you are actually one of the ones thatwas just like hey, you know what, play peak a Ram like that deckis just so good and I'm like, yes, you're right. The thingthat I valued the most about peak ram was that I didn't really haveunplayable hands when I was playing that deck. I could always do something, youknow, I was always attacking turn to I was always putting some amountof pressure on and I felt that that wasn't quite what I was getting withthe Blissa Fla on deck and in a lot of cases the Dragon Paul Deckwas just falling a little bit short in certain matchups, and so I waslike, okay, you know what, I'm going to go with just themost consistent deck that I know, deck that I've played in the past tosuccess and a deck that I just expect to be a solid call for thetournament. Nothing very, you know, spooky in terms of the metagaming.You know, I wasn't trying to go for anything unique or unheard of,but the peak around list, I felt was very strong. And I'll goover just the rounds very quickly so people know. But round one I lostto a dust stocks deck, which just wasn't the way that you want tostart the tournament we had. It was just so close, like we hadwe got it down to the last prize and we were looking for our malowand Laana and it just didn't happen for us and it's like, you knowwhat, that's how it goes like. If we get that Malon Laana,like we were fine, but we don't and we lose. And then thesecond round we had a Dq or the the opponent didn't show up, sohe was eliminated from the tournament. That was a w we beat a blound'sdeck, which I knew going in was a pretty unfavorable matchup and I figuredit okay, if by hit too and one dead draws, then that's kindof where I want to sit with that matchup. And so we did hitone. In round three. They did end of dead drawing to the win. They are. Round four we played dragon poult and I would say thatthis was the one favorable matchup on the day. Like if I could haveplayed all my rounds against Dragon Pult as the peak around player, I figuredI would have made day two, and so I was looking for the DragonPult DEX for sure. That felt like a very solid, winnable, favorablematchup. Round five played the peak a Roum. We won. Around sixwe donked a spear to another deck that I was really concerned about heading intothe day, but didn't figure that I would see too many. And againit was kind of like the Bliss Flon, like maybe we'll see too maybe ifwe can talk one, then will be living large. You know,we'll come out of that and feel like we were successful. And then roundeight, after the lunch breaks, I'm sitting at what five and two atthis point? Around eight, played against a Blis flon. ended up losingthat one. Around nine, peak around was a dub and I'm feeling great, you know, sitting at seven and three. But then we faced anotherpeak, a Ram that got an unbelievable...

...turn one. It was just likethe funkiest turn one they had for energy switching cards and they use like threeof them or so. It was just very bizarre how they got their turnone. Ended up doing it and really in that peak around mirrors, likeif you if you get the first turn full blitz, you're just in thedrive receipt for the whole game. And then ended up losing another one toblows Felon around eleven. So I just felt like the matchups weren't really favorablefor me. Hitting three blow cephalon. We did come away with a winagainst one of them that we don't but especially, you know, the twospirit tomb we could have easily lost both of those. Really felt like Ionly had the one matchup that was that was extreme favorable in the dragon pulldeck and then, you know, got the the positive side of variance inthe peak rom but overall, six and five ended up stopping there and nota great day. I still feel very strongly about the deck choice. Itwas the most popular deck and day too, of the limitless qualifier number for andso I can't really hate on the list or the choice that I madefor the event. But like all three that I was kind of deciding between, it the last moment. We're good, but in the end I just couldn'tget there with the peak around deck. Yeah, I'm Pe Kurram even takingthat a step further, was the most popular deck in the top sixteenas well, getting a huge amount of representation relative to some of the otherdecks. So, you know, I don't think he made a mistake inyour choice, and that's part way me standing by ground as well. ThatI think was a good choice. Yes event. Yeah, unfortunately, youknow. So the story goes like you know, only so many peak romscan get the good side of the variance that make it all the way there, though. Right, that's great. You know there's to be some peakaround that that dies for the sins of the ones ahead of them. That'sright, it's that was you this time. That was definitely me, for sure. I definitely fell on the sword. So let's talk about how the tournamentactually panned out. So at the very top we had a mirror matchbetween is wool and a player from Japan. His name is escaping me right now. It is to Cato Secky. Yep, exactly, and so Takatoand is a will both rocking the compos ash in deck, and this isa deck that was kind of a known quantity through the entire rebel clash format, but only really making an appearance, at least in in the ways thatit has now, at this tournament. So you know myself, I Ikind of underrated, I think, Compos Osh and JB. I don't knowif you feel similarly, absolutely, but to me, I think what sticksout about it, and I think this is something that you'll adhere and likecommentary of these matches and amongst players who evaluate this deck is compos ash andreally takes advantage of probably what's the strongest card that they printed a long time, and that's the scoop up net. And Yeah, I don't think anyany deck really utilizes that card as well as Compos ostion. You can maybemake some arguments, but I think, I think, when it comes downto it, like as far as as a high raw power level, andthen it's further supplanted by being able to very effectively use the scoop up netcard, and that being to get your Gerashi Combo off multiple times or toget some insane like Gerraci plays. It's just generally a consistency card. Soand to me, I guess that was something I just undervalued. I thoughtthe damage output would be too low and clearly yet that was not the case. To w what are your thoughts in the COMBOS option deck? Well,I think that, first off, I think it's very, very strong.After playing with the the polished lists, I've seen the power of the deckin that it can really take a solid matchup to almost anything if it does, you know, assuming it draws some things it needs. But it hasthat built in consistency with S aution. So it it usually does. Ithink for me, what led me to believe it maybe wasn't quite the rightdeck choice for a tournament like this would be that it's awfully fragile in away, and what I mean by this is that you generally set up likeone's astion on the board at any one time. There are times where youcan get to down. I mean that that obviously happens, but a lotof the Times I find myself with just one's on the board, powered up, you know, attacking, but then I have to save my bench slotsfor all the support Pokemon that I need to take that extra prize, andso it leaves you in these very uncomfortable situations where you could get Marni orreset stamped and then just kind of not be able to pull the pieces togetherto get another zastion going to take the final attacks. And that's where Iwas kind of heading into the tournament,...

...just kind of not feeling that thedeck had the strength to go the distance. I think there were some innovations thatI saw from a Zoul's list and Takada's list that were very, verycool and added a lot to the deck that I really hadn't seen before,but overall it is, in my opinion, the strongest deck of this format,just like ATP was the strongest deck of last format for just being ableto put your opponent on a turn clock. This does the exact same thing,just in a different way and a slightly faster way, making it thatmuch better. And the prize trade is a lot better than ATP where youcould take down a three prize pokemon and then just snipe off, you know, a Geraci as well as a de dennirization like this one, you prettymuch have to go through three Zation. If you just add up the totalhit points. There's a significant difference there in terms of, you know,the meat that you have to go through as the opposing deck to take yoursix prizes. Yeah, and I think I think you kind of hit ona lot of the things that I would say and agree with. For me, I the damage output was initially off putting because I thought that there wouldbe more of a tag team centric Meta. I suppose. I thought you twowould still be, you know, a viable option. I thought,I like these atpdcs and still be a factor. I thought, you know, the damage for speak, Ram would be a a elevant number. Butwhat I think ended up happening is, as the Meta has shifted in away that you know, now drag a poles a favored deck, and youknow, even peak ram like you can still find that pretty clear routes towin. And then in Zash and mirrors like there's no reason to really powerup and ATP and waste two turns when you could be aggressing on turn twoor even turn one if you haven't have an explosive enough start. And Ithink that's the that's the fact that I underestimated, and I think even damageoutput aside, you have such a an advantage in terms of aggression right likeyou were able to do so much so quickly, as opposed to having tospend at least one turn using altered creation. You know, if you happen todo some energy, which, craziness, that's still a turn where you're doingare you know, our infamous catchphrase of like sticking in ATP in theactive and hoping it doesn't die. You're there. Yeah, add you knowgrant. I think ATP is less likely to die instantly now than it wasthen. But I think the flip side of that is like there's still there'snow guaranteed gust with boss's orders, which was basically lacking. Besides great catcher. Before you have a lot of sniping. Now you have Dragon Pole, andthe damage output becomes less relevant because you're either dealing with very squishy decksthat you'll want shot anyway or very tanky decks that you won't one shot anyway. Yeah, the I mean it's just it's really a very cool case studyin prize trading where the Zash and deck. You're right, there are decks thatyou know, p Kuram is a great example. It doesn't one shotof Pik Rom, but it doesn't necessarily need to, because the way thatpe Kurama is constructed, it really relies on having the support pokemon like Todenna and like the and like the zero aura right to just facilitate their strategy. And so you could literally win in two turns against that deck most ofthe time, you know, assuming that they play at Dedenn a in aor two todenn A and a zero aura and you know, whatever combination there, you could literally win the game without ever attacking into their main attackers,and that to me is just the you know, it's a it's a massivestrength of the deck. It's a massive strength of the deck where you canjust you can scoot around whatever they're trying to set up. And then theother thing too, is like you look at Blis Cephalon will you have theperfect counter to a Blis Cephalon deck with your Tappoofini that does exactly the samething. And then you're forcing them to hit into a one prizer, therebyforcing them to take seven prizes, and that's more than enough time to getall your stuff set up. And then you look at a deck like SpearTomb, same kind of idea. Of course you struggle a little bit morebecause they do have that one shot potential. And then drag a pault. Imean you're just trading, you know, you're trading two shots, but yourtwo shot gives you four prizes and their two shot gives you to write. And so it's just a very interesting case study, like I said,in that prize trading and kind of setting your board position so that you cantake advantage of the just pokemon that your opponent has out. It doesn't haveto be their main attacker, like just sniping their bench for two prizes orthree prizes whatever. You can go around their main strategy entirely and still winthe game, which is while. Yeah, and I would say even taking thatfurther, like against deck such as...

Peak Ram, the price trade worksout in such a way where you can actually afford to two shot one ofthe tag teams because then once you get that one shot on the dedne forthe extra prize, that's still game, you know, and that's three attackswhere peak rom basically it's impossible for peak ram to Oko you three times.And so right you have that advantage where you can tank one hit from peakRam, Ko the PE K ram or you know where, take the hit, whatever in that process that is, and then Ko one support pokemon.So it's just it builds up a lot of really interesting scenarios and I thinkthat's a that's a cool way to phrase it. Is Like it's an interestingcase study into how price trade factors into like a dex viability, and soI definitely recommend picking this deck up. It's very strong. It has solidifieditself as one of the best decks in the format, if not be bestdeck in the format, and it's Super Fun to play, and I'll evensay this, I think it's a good deck to learn the game on becauseit teaches you a lot about sequensidering, about price trade and sure you know. And one of the thing, yeah, when one of the things that I'vebeen seeing to on the ladders just that a people don't know how toplay and be people don't know how to play against it. I think thoseare both very, very you know, just important things to know, likeresource conservation is very important with the deck. Right. If you only have onescoop up net left, you really need to decide, you know,what you're going to use it on, assuming you know it's various factors.If you end up discarding a Mr Mime early, which is very reasonable todo, then maybe you have to scoop up your mind that you had alreadyplayed down or something like this. I mean there's just a lot of littleintricacies to the deck that are very cool that I think a lot of playerswould miss on the first go around and that I've definitely seen players miss onthe first go around when I've been playing them on the little ladder. Soreally interesting deck, I think. Moving on to some of the other decksthat were very viable, peak ram below cephalon was somewhat viable and I thinkdragon polt was just a very strong choice for the metagame. We also sawa an ultimate mew two but piloted by Ilia Kornilov, get sixth place,which was pretty wild. And then a deck that I'm not very excited aboutbut did perform fairly well, as the spirit tum deck. I was notreally excited about the dragon pult matchup and just kind of the the one priziness. And there's the inconsistencies of a few reasons that I don't love dragon poleor spirit tomb, but it did pretty well overall on the day. Thereand qualifier for yeah, I think at a lot of these decks are onesthat we discussed and you can check back on some of our recent episodes tosee are more in depth opinion on these. I think the only thing that reallysticks out to me is something maybe worth calling out, is the crushinghammers build dragged Boul kind of moving into the spotlight as the premier way toplay the deck. I asked someone tow who plays a lot of dragon poleand is very fond of the deck. What are your thoughts on this build. Well, that was what I was going to play heading into the evening, like after I'd finished stream and I had to try to make this choicebetween well, do I play both Cyphon or do play Dragon Paul? Iwas really leaning towards Dragon Poult and just thinking that the crushing hammers were veryviable, particularly for the mirror. I would say that's the most important matchupthat you need the hammers for, but also against ADP. You know,if if you ever face that deck and then it does have some pretty solidviability against the zation right, yeah, and so and I guess some limiteduse in peak a Ram, but they just accelerate and get energy back ina pretty insane way. But yeah, it was really important, I think, for the deck because you just need to slow your opponent. It's downto your speed. If you can do that, then you have a prettysolid chance and that's why I think the stamp plant Combo, like we weretalking about last week, is very strong for the deck, just because atthe late game, you know you've already fed them a few prizes probably atthis point, but if you can stamp plant them into the right hand orthey're wrong hand, then you can usually overcome them with picking off their pivotsand just hitting into their main attacker. Yeah, yeah, definitely it was. It was cool to see that builds the success. Ktron obviously played theZambas and to V, which you are out of the loop on that.That was that was a joke. It was a bet amongst his friends.So if you see that, I wonder why it's there. It's not somemysterious like mirror attack or anything like that. It is just a joke. Cool. Yeah, I think lettle list, thank you so much for these events. These were awesome. I really hope that we get to see moreevents on this scale going into the future...

...and Pokemon, even when events starthappening again in real life. I would love to see more stuff like this. Yeah, and I think there have been a lot of grass roots tournamentsthat have popped up as the limitless has kind of proven itself to work andthat there would be interest in online tournaments. I think we're starting to see aswell, or consistently have been seeing over the last month, just theseother grass roots tournaments that are drawing pretty viable crowds for people that just wantto play the game more, and so that's really exciting and encouraging that ourgame is I don't know if I I mean, yeah, you know what, let's just say our game is thriving even in this covid nineteen crisis,and that's very, very encouraging to see it really is. It really is, and so I think that's a great segue then into our next topic,which is the Players Cup. I know there's been a lot of swirl aroundthe Players Cup and, yeah, you know what it represents and we talkedabout this lightly last week and you know the systems that go into play here. Yeah, so I think let's start at the highest level as well.Recently posted a video going over some of his grievances with the Players Cup andI think it resonated with a lot of people as far as the points thathe was trying to drive home, and I think since then there's even beenmore things that come up, the first one being the ticket threshold, andthis is something that we talked about just last week and we wished it didn'twork out the way that it did. Yeah, well, I was hopeful. You know, I was looking at some of the other things that havehappened in online tournaments or even happen within the umbrella of Pokemon as a whole, and I was saying, okay, pokemon trading card game has historically beenpretty late with their information, and I would say that no one would reallydisagree that. They kind of tend to either parcel out things or wait until, you know, very late in the game to announce big changes or bigupdates or things like this. And so I was last week very hopeful thatsomething would come out or that the system would just be updated without us knowingwhere. I would say, okay, you can participate in, you know, x number of tournaments a day. That's all you get. You know, maybe put a cap on it and then everyone gets, you know,free entry or, you know, their ten tickets a day or whatever itis, making it so that the playing field is even for everyone. Obviously, that didn't happen and it's now we're trying to figure out where do wego and what is this tournament even mean if not everyone has an equal chanceto participate in and I think, like you said, as Wull did avery nice job. I I'll be it a bit harsh for my taste,but he did. He did a nice job of kind of crystallizing and formulatinga lot of the opinions that a lot of players have and I think sincehis videos come out, I feel like there's been a stronger emotional discussion aboutwhat it means to play in an event like this, and it's I Imean it's missed the mark. Now that we know the full extent. It'sdefinitely miss the mark, you know, of where tournament like this should beand could be. Yeah, so to go over kind of what that lookslike for the viewers who might not be necessarily in the loop. As faras the players, Cup Pokemon is going to be compiling the top x amountof players for region in America is the top to fifty six on tournament repwhich is a relatively arbitrary score based on your performance in Tcg online tournaments,just those little events that you get through the event tab when you hit play. And the flaw of this comes in how you enter those tournaments in thefirst place. The tournaments give tradable packs as prizes and so your entry isgated to those tournaments because it's kind of your way to recoup like real,real packs as opposed to like store bought ones in the game. So there'sa huge incentive to play in them, win a new set release, right, and so you're incentivized to play in them, but they're your entry islimited, you know, by those tickets that you get, and tickets arerelatively hard to get, at least compared to some of the other resources youmight get in the game, like coins. It take cost actually eat tickets toenter a tournament, which is a substantial amount, and to actually climbthis leaderboard, because it's only based on your total number of entries. Forthe most part, even if you lose and mediately in the tournament, youget tournament wrapped. The whole system of...

...ranking is basically based on how manytournaments you play. And granted, you accelerate your climb through the leaderboard byperforming well, but you could have you know, you could just as effectively, if you have eight times as many tickets, just immediately drop out ofevery single tournament and get as many as people who did first in, youknow, that many tournaments as well. Right. So the whole system isjust kind of messed up. It's very much gated because a lot of playershave expended their tickets doing just normal in game activity with no prior knowledge I. You know, JW and other streamers like to participate in tournaments as well, just as a means to connect with their viewers. I myself like touse the tournaments as a means to get new packs. I actually do havea decent stockpile right now, but that's besides the point. I Caleb getemerparticipate in a ton of tournaments to use like six hundred tickets. It's thatway he could acquire like legacy collection stuff, which is like a niche format andTCG. Oh, it's just it's tough. It's tough. Yeah,and I doues. So there's not like a great path to fixing it fromhere either, because now we're deep enough in. You know, grant it'sonly couple days, but we're in the midst of it now, and soyou can't just change the rules now, right. That's the biggest issue.Is that. I just I wonder if, if anything would have been said,if it would have changed it, because I think now we're seeing thata lot of opinions are coming out and a lot of people are very openlysaying that they despise the way that the tournament is being run right now,and I wonder if you know? Probably not, probably not, but Iwonder if you know more harsher criticism was said that things might have been different, although I think there was. I mean I think there was enough warning, right. I think there was enough warning coming from, you know,the the higher ups in the content creation game, to kind of say Whoathey're, you know, pokemon. Maybe this should be thought out a littlebit differently. You know, here's some ideas that you can take from usas to what we'd like to see. But, you know, it didn'thappen. I think a lot of people are going to be upset and there'sjust going to be a lot of gatekeeping, like you said. It's just sadfor a company that does, you know, promote this inclusivity and thiskind of togetherness. You know, we're all in this together, that peoplejust literally there are many, many, many top tier players that had,will will have, no prayer to make it into this, you know,tournament. This hope, I what I would hope that they view is prestigious. They just have no way to get in. Yeah, and even diggingdeeper into it, people were looking at the systems that are used on theseleader boards and there's a huge amount of country as that are just excluded frombeing able to participate in this leader board, particularly in the Oceania regions. Countriessuch as, you know, Malaysia and Singapore just aren't on the leaderboards and they are specifically excluded. And, you know, granted, my interpretationof that is it probably has something to do with like, you know, online gaming laws or restrictions. I don't know for sure, but thefact of the matter is, you know, even even if someone in Malaysia hadinfinite time to acquire all the tickets in the world, you know,they started from zero tickets but just grinded their way into a million of them, they still couldn't make it into the tournament, no matter what they did. It's it's absurd. You know, it's tough and it makes it demoralizingthe play because, like, there's obviously a great reward on the line withthe travel reward. That's basically the most prestigious award that you can get.And pokemon as far as like getting those stipends two events, and not justthe stipend but the full trip. Sure, and but what's the point, like, what is the actual competitive value of this tournament if, if thereso many people. D depture is playing. Yeah, it'll be very interesting tosee how this progresses. But, like we said, the competitive playerbase is really soured on and the tournament as a whole. And I I'mgenerally not going to be as negative as some and and not. I mean, and that's I hope that's not feeling like people are being thrown under thebus. When I say that negative, I mean I just generally like tothink that Pokemon, I want to hope that there was some reason that itcame out like this. I want to hope that there was something that preventedthem from doing it another way or from implementing the systems that they needed to. I appreciate the idea and the concept,...

I really do. I think thatin all of this that aspect is being undercut a little bit by kindof the missteps that have been made, but I do really appreciate Pokemon forputting this event on. I wish it was different. Yeah, and goingback to your point about the underlying concepts, I think you're right, like havingan online tournament is a fantastic idea and we've seen it done to greatsuccess. Jeff, in the last month you know. So where's the disconnect? I think it lives in Pokemon is using an outdated structure on their client. This is something we've covered in it feels like a dozen episodes now,at least a half, doesn't you know? The TCGEO client needs some revamping.They're sticking themselves in this system that just isn't compatible with the modern structureof how a trading card game should look on online client and it it's ultimatelylimiting them long term. I think so. I think so. It would be. I don't know if there's any way we could study this, butjust it would be interesting to know kind of the retention rate of players inthis time because they had just you know, you never want to say that withthis this crisis, is this health crisis, that it would be agolden opportunity for for improvement, but it does feel that way in a sense. I just wonder how many more people could have been involved with the gameand how many more like new faces we maybe could have engaged through this onlineseries that maybe transition over into in real life playing that we just never wouldhave known about before. I do think that there are going to be thosepeople that we just have never heard about before and they're going to show upa top you know, in the top four right, because they're good playersand they had a ton of tournament tickets, but they never went to like aregionals or anything like that. They never played cards in real life.They just always play the ladder. I think we're going to find some ofthose people out there. That will be kind of interesting. You know,I'm personally excited to, you know, see those people. That would bekind of funny if you know some person we've literally never heard of just winsthe whole thing would be pretty interesting and kind of cool and, you know, certainly would be a story. But yeah, it's just a few,a few little miss steps that I think are preventing us from really truly graspingon to it as a community and taking it for for the successful will eventit. It could have been right, and so what I hope is totake away from this, both for the listeners and, you know, PokemonCompany, is that, you know, we had online tournaments are something thatwe can do and that the community clearly desires, and I think that expandsbeyond our world health crisis. I think online structured events would be something thatwould get a lot of attention, regardless of if people were self quarantining.I have truly believe that. And so how can we as a not onlyas a community, but, you know, how can pokemon take a look atwhat has been done, reflect on that and build upon it in thefuture? And maybe for Pokemon that involves like an actual structure being put inplace on their client. And you know, if they're hesitant to, you know, run a large scale tournament without the structure in place on that client, that's just something that needs to happen and that's row block that they needto overcome. But regardless, like what steps need to be taken to moveinto it an actual competitive online realm, and you know, to me thatthat looks like having a rank ladder. That looks like having actual tournaments thatyou can build out and run inside the client. And I hope that thisis the wakeup call that this is something the community really wants and would do, you know, and not just as something that we're interested in, butwould certainly make pokemon lots of money, because certainly more people would be interestedin participating in the online client. That's right. I mean there are thereare ways to do it. I mean, I just look at with all mytime that I've invested in Pokemon go and just to say, like,how cool would it be to have an INAPP purchase area? I know thatwouldn't that also would not be the way I would want to go with it, but just to provide an example of a case where, you know,they have an INAPP purchase system that clearly, you know, transcends like the productof the putting out like it's clearly bigger, makes them just just alot of money there. And how cool it it be to have something likethat in our game? And how cool would it be to have just theseother systems that pokemon is implemented throughout their branding, throughout their umbrella, andhopefully we'll get that. I mean we've been praying for this years. Iplayed this game for ten years and I am still waiting for some of these. They seem like the minors thing.

I'm leading with. POKEMON. Pleasehelp us as players, help us as content creators. I have still faith. I still have faith. I believe in you, pokemon. I believein you. I believe you want to help us, I believe you loveus. But ever year they just feels like one thing after the other.You know, I can just go back through the years failed and this isthe latest example. But I still love pokemon really, I still love thecompany, still love everything. I just I just wish it was a littlebetter. Yeah, no, I agree, man. I I've been a littleless interested in tcgo lately compared to normal, and I feel like ifthere was just a ranked ladder that I could grind and see myself at thetop of the I would be playing so much it would be insane. Iwould be so hype about that. Yeah, it's just I've played that nonstop.Oh Yeah, if I really people like all day they can. Youwould just be so fun if I could see that I was better than you. Right, actually, though, right, like being able to climb is sucha fun experience. That's what that's at the core of what makes somany of these online games so successful, right, is they not? Eventhe online games, bro like, look at the look at the hand heldgame, like the game boy game. Bro Like, you're trying to bethe champ. That's the whole driving stuffy line of every pokemon game. Likeyou can't finish a game unless you're the champ. So please, so true. Give us that so true. I don't. I feel like we cannotpossibly emphasize enough how much we want to see the online experience for Pokmon tradingcard game be better. It's something I'm certainly passionate about. Jake, he'spassionate about I think all content creators are probably passionate about this, because it'sliterally a huge facet of our lives. This is playing this game. Sothere's some chaos going. On the hand, I think, Oh, yeah,I don't know, somebody, somebody just did something crazy. I don'tknow, but you know, we still love the game, but we wouldlove to see it be better and love it more. Yeah, yeah,we exactly that. That's well point. We love the game, you know, great game mechanics wise, for sure. Generally, you know, we're justwe're happy that there are at least I'm happy. I generally take thatpositive at it, like I'm happy that there's something that we can use,but always going to be ways for improvement, and I think that just holds truejust generally speaking, like in my personal life, like I'm happy whereI'm at. I can always be better, and so yeah, hoping that thatit gets better. And hoping that we can just have these dialogs andmaybe someone will listen and maybe we will get the change that we would liketo see. Absolutely so I think we've covered a huge Friday. So I'vebeen stucked about decks. We've talked about the players cop and its flaws.Personally, I think you can kind of play whatever you want if you're inthe players cut. Just half fun with it. I think it's more aboutthe quantities and the quality of the events that you play in. So ifI had to make any recommendation, I would just say pick a deck thatcan win relatively quickly and yeah, so, yeah, there you. So that'sall. That's really all I have as far as recommendations. We Aboulove to open the floor to you all if you have a couple questions thatyou'd like to pose before we wrap up for the day. I think there'sa lot of interesting discussion that we've had so far and if anyone wants toexpand on any of that, we had loved chat to call some of thatout. Perhaps you fan was talking about when I was discussing peak ram aboutadding anything for the blounds matchup, or just take it as a rough matchup. And Yeah, I was playing a few games the night before quarter forwith Andrew Mahone and we were playing the blounds against Pe Kurram matchup, andit just felt almost as as irredeemable of a matchup as one could face.And I mean the the closest thing you could come to a tech for thatmatchup that has been played in the past is like an apps all, butthat doesn't quite work if the blow cephalon player doesn't play scoop, doesn't playthe eskateboard instead, just play scoop up nets, which I think a lothave trended towards now, and so that just completely nullifies the apps all play. And then if they play, you know, and then the blonds canjust hard tech for P K ram by just playing a mew, and thenthat just really in ensures the victory. I mean you can do other things, I suppose, like multiple Phoenis,...

...multiple taboo pheny, but even atthat point, like all they really need is one great catcher, I feellike, and they can swing the prize trade. So it's definitely a roughmatch if you really just have to hope that they did draw for that one. Yeah, for sure. Damn or x says. Love to hear yourthoughts on the DF and why you think that is. Well, what doyou think, Riley? I think there's a couple decks that are clearly morepowerful than the rest. I think the sash and Combo deck. I don'twant to necessarily say it's The v Da F in such a way that's likeclearly better than every other deck, but I think that deck is insane.I would put it, put that deck peak Ram and maybe drag aful inlike that one tier of the best decks. I think JW might lean a littlemore towards Josh and being like the actual best. I'm a little morenebulous on my choice right now. HMM. Yeah, I definitely think that thoseAshen Combo deck from just what I've seen of it, from the limitlessqualifier and then everything that I've played with it. It's just felt very consistent. I mean I think we talked about last week the intangibles of a decklike Dragon Poult and I think xastion has those intangibles as well. Just thethings of being able to accelerate the prize trade. You know you only needtwo turns to win, and certain decks which is just kind of wild,like you only need two attacks to win if they drop it to Denne andthey have a you know V or something that you can kill or you knowwhatever. It is, like you only need two turns. That's insane andhas that kind of raw draw power. That's really nice to see that.You know, obviously atpsation decks had in the past, but just is,you know, kind of almost amplified more here in this case and it justhas exact numbers on certain thing. You know, it has enough damage,enough numbers for the right price that it all works together in harmony to formthis really, really strong I wouldn't say that it's that it's, you know, headed shoulders above the way that ATP was in past formats, but Iwould say that it is the stire deck that is it's, in my opinion, you know, very difficult to counter, unless you're playing a straight fire deckor something like Obstacleon, which are just like bad against a lot ofevery of other things and only really good against that one deck. And thenthose can be countered too by you know, metal frying pan and a thakes likethat. But you know, it's just so impossible to counter from myperspective, and then Pekuram, bull a Cephalon and drag a Paul kind ofoccupy that Tier One metagame that you know have a decent shot against the Zatiandeck but are all kind of struggling with, you know, each other, inthe tears lower to Um, you know, to succeed in a tournament, for sure. Yeah, I think it's a great way to put it. Cash man, asking an there's any point of going the ATPS option routewhen the ASH GERACI has been proven so effective. I think we touched onthis a lot earlier. I think, to delve into more specifics, theGeroshi route is just so streamlined and consistent and more aggressive, and I thinkthat's going to benefit it more in this Meta than the ATP effect necessarily will. The only case I could see like ATP really serving You well is ifyou're in, like you too heavy metas or something, where you know gettingthat to hundred and seventy will just win you the game. Sure, sure, I mean just think about the prize exchanges, though. With ATP YOUHAVE TO WAIT for turns. I mean sometimes you can get an energy switchedlike Combo off, but with ATP generally, traditionally, you know you're waiting forturns, right, you have your first turn attachment, your second turnattachment and attack and then presumably to attacks finish the game. But sometimes thatgets really awkward. If they have a one prize attacker. On average,you know you're spending like four turns and then potentially more, depending on whatyour point it can bring up. Yeah, but then with this Asian deck youhave, like I said that that to you could you could literally winthe game in two attacks, two turns. Yeah, two turns, right,two turns, and so that is just where that that differs. Right, the two decks differ in that one it is very consistent with that fourturn clock, but the other one has the potential to do it in twoturns. What ATP could do it for? Right, right, and the pointthat I would just keep coming back to is like the what made ATPreally work was it cleaned up the math on the tag teams, and Idid. That's isn't as necessary in the current metagame. Yeah, and that'sa good point too. You're looking at the metagame right now and the vMax's are just out of range. ATP or not, they're just out ofrange. So that makes that math kind of negligible. You have things likePeka Ram, which that's maybe your one...

...where you wish that you had anATP attack, but not super necessary because they play those are oars and thosede Dente's on the bench, thereby making it so you can gust around theirmain attacker. And then you have the rise of the Non Gi's attackers.So things like spiritumb, things like Welli Ceplon, really kind of round outthe upper tier decks, viable decks in this format, and so those arejust it. You know, you're one shotting them with a very average amountof damage anyway that you get by with having the two towel and actually,I would say against those decks it's probably better to have the Combo because you'reright not going to have to spend two turns preparing, which is exactly whatthe one prized decks want, right, right, because they also sometimes needthose extra turns to prepare, especially like baby of the stuff pawn. Ilike against baby stuff on in particular, you have a pretty clear route whereyou can combot twice and then Ko or Ra Choreo and he win, andthat's as faster faster than they can win the game. Right. We gota steven says, Hey, guys, I've been lurking in the background whilecleaning dishes. Well, I'm glad you are very sanitary man, Steven.Just wondering if either you can give any hope to stage two's becoming more viableanytime soon. Played some myself recently and while I was of fun, theyjust get bodied and I would say the Bible stage to right now is obstacleon. I don't see that they're being too many others. I think there aresome rogue concepts, things like dust stocks, I mean dust os as a stagetoo. That has very, very limited viability. But just there aren'tenough stage twos that can achieve any sort of like massive pressure on the opponent. You could look to something like a chandelour deck, but unfortunately again you'replagued by these inconsistency issues in the stage two and so obstacleon only really worksbecause it puts on such a hard lock against certain decks that that just immediatelymakes a viable and then, yeah, I haven't I haven't really seen manystage two's work out that well. We have grimm snarl in the chat here. Things like drag a poult the non vmax I've seen on the ladder doesn'treally feel that great. But Riley, maybe you have more thoughts on stagetwo's think stage twos are in a honestly, a pretty bad spot right now.There's just like not a not a ton going for them right like theythey have kind of low HP. Honestly, they're relatively will have expensive attack costsand are hard to set up. It's unfortunate. I think the mostrecent time when stage twos had any sort of metagame presence was either like inthe nine tails decks in lost thunder or in, you know, the earlysun and moon days, when you have like guard of R GX and deciduogsrunning the show. I think, without giving stage two's like in equalizer andpower level, and I think obstacle is probably the closest thing to that,where it like hard locks decks without getting it. Something like that the stagetwos, unfortunately, I just don't think our viable the way that the gameis currently built and played. Yeah, so it's unfortunate. I think towith the level of effort it takes to get out of Stage two, youhave to really be able to break the game when you get it out.Yeah, it has to do something very strong for it to matter. Andso when will they be viable? I mean we're we are looking ahead to, you know, at some point in the future, like a rotation wherewe will lose a significant amount of these, you know, just insanely strong basicattackers. And so perhaps, as the format shifts more towards these vMax has, that also are evolutions that also afford your deck, you know, a turn or two to set up as well. Maybe then the stagetwo's will be more viable. Right. And I think Pokemon, you know, I think generally basics will always be the resounding decks. With the waythat, you know, the game is built right now and like designed,I think pokemon tends to shift around. You know, our stage ones viableattacking options. Are Stage two's even playable? Yeah, I think we're kind ofan era right now. Or stage ones are are like the premiere orwhat they pokemon is gearing towards being different. Your way to play, like tagteams were definitely a move towards basics. v Max is are moved towards stageone. Ask things. Yeah, and I mean May and it mightbe some grand, you know strategy that we just don't quite know yet,because, I mean, we are seeing very, very viable evolutions in theform of v Maxs, and so it...

...might be something where we've gone fromthis basic Meta to this you know, potential stage one Meta to potentially,you know, a stage to focus metagame in just the card design that I'mnot you know, I have no inside information on this, but just youknow, he kind of look historically, it's like the VA axes will takeover at some point. You know, they they're already almost arguably taken overat this point, and the former dragon bolt be Max just being a veryhigh tier deck, and so, you know, just looking into the future, I would expect things to come back around because we've had in the past, you know, where stage twos were like almost the only decks that youcould play and then moving into a basic MEDO and so on and so forthwith like SPS. I would say it was the real kind of turning pointwhere it was stage twos and Guardabor Galle ad against sp stuff and and then, you know, moving on from that and now it's basic and then westage ones and then maybe in the future stage two so hoping that they comeback. Yeah, I would love to see stage twos have have their nextheyday. I think they deserve it to me. To me, like thestage one and two's are more representative, I guess, of like what Pokemonis then, just having big basics ram at each other. Yeah, it'slike evolution, man, it's like it's pokemon. That's right, but sotrue. You know, unfortunately we don't have a hand in the designer poolto be able to say that. Not yet, not yet. Yeah.Well, everyone, this has been an awesome episode. Thank you all somuch for listening. We really appreciate every single one of you. Be sureto check out some of the movements that we will be linking in the descriptionof the podcast and the Youtube video. It's that way you can continue tocontribute in positive ways to our communities. Thank you so much everyone, andwe'll see you next time. Peace. Do You.

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