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Tag Team Pokemon TCG Podcast
Tag Team Pokemon TCG Podcast

Season 3, Episode 35 · 8 months ago

3-35. Tag Teamless: Riley's Ramblings

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

JW is missing in acton this week, but fear not- Riley is here! Come listen to him rant about Urshifu VMAX and get a sneak peek into Player's Cup IV.

Yo, what is up? Guys? Welcome back to tag team, the POKEMON Trading Card Games Premiere podcasting duo. My name is Riley Hulbert, joined by nobody. It's just a soloepisode today. Mr Jw Curry Wall is having a late night, so I'mrunning this one myself. Now. There has been plenty going on in thePOKEMON trading card games sphere, so I want to make sure we just diveright into it and take a look at some of the top events in thescene lately. First and foremost, as we head into players cut, forI think it's important to look back and reflect on where we've been. Geta nice little sense of reminiscing, and I say that because the Players Cupthree is now officially concluded. Now the Games had happened previously, they havinga little bit before they had been broadcasted, but the finals were just broadcast ispast weekend and man, what an amazing showing is. Wulgarca griego takinghome the DUB with a rapid strike, or Chifu vmax deck in a really, excuse me, in a really dominant fashion. So Zul taking that rapidstriker Sheifu Rock in the GERACI engine with both the Geracig x and the Mimiq from cosmic eclips and really running through all the Pika Rams, the Victeni's, and you could definitely tell that this was a Meta that hadn't been fullyevolved in the cosmic eclipse metagame. Particularly I want to point out that manyof zuls opponents didn't play stealthy hood, for example in their puch andcom decks, which left them really vulnerable to that shadow box mimic you with their mewtwo, which is the only real answer. They have two cards like rapid strikeor she fu. So Azul taken down Peka Ram in the losers finals andthe grand finals at three, owing both of those opponents, as well asas really dominating wins against Victini. You got to give them props. Thatwas a heck of a showing. So congratulations to Azul Garcia. Agree Igo in that Players Cup number three. Now players cut four qualifiers will betaking place in that same battle styles format. So what does that mean for us? We'll get into that for sure, but I want to talk a littlebit about rapid strike or she fu vmax. So obviously rapid strike orSheifu was showing up well in Players Cup three, that's for sure, seeingsuch named players as Zul and toward. You know, those are really thefavorites of many of the fans heading into players cut three finals, and it'sno surprise why, with them having really lauded achievements and making huge name forthemselves over the years in the POKEMON trading card game. Now, they bothdid play different variants, with toward playing...

...that more European favored Cinchin no variant, with the Snorelas to help set up and only bird keeper as their drawsupporders, whereas the Zul playing more of a turbo variant, with those GERACI'sfrom team up to quickly plow through your deck and draw those cards. Sowhy was rapid strike so a favorite? Well, rappid strike is definitely adeck that leads to a lot of creativity in your game play, particularly withthat gmax rapid flow. You have a lot of opportunities to sneak games whereyou wouldn't necessarily otherwise. You can set up some cool math for yourself andreally fine creative routes to win. The one thing I'll say, though,about Ershifu vmax is doing one hundred and fifty a turn in of itself ishonestly not particularly impressive. Many of the v Max is in the format cando that. Many of the GX's in the format can do it. Sowhy is Orshifu doing well? It will really lies in the trickery it canunfold, be it with Cheryl in the cinchino variants or consistent bosses orders toprey on those de Denny and crow bats or, of course, that gmaxrapid flow to put two hundred and forty damage on the board and creative ways. So what I'm saying by this is rabbit strike is a deck that needsto be played optimally at the highest level, and playing it optimally isn't always anobvious path. We also have seen the Meta evolved quite rapidly in thelast couple of weeks, which is led me to believe that, honestly,Rapa striker she fu is not in the same place it was at the timeof filming. The Players Cup decks such as Lucario Mel metal have really risenin popularity. You can look at the last couple like chill glimwood events andyou can see that the car metal is all over the place. So whatdoes that mean for Rabbit Strike? Well, even with that phoebe engine, it'sreally hard to beat that Lucargo Mel Metal. So phoebe obviously letting yousneak in attacks against that Zamba sent to V as well as giving you away to pierce through that extra damage reduction. The problem is the math is justreally icky. If a Lucaro memorial gets a couple of heels off,then all of a sudden or Sheaf, who was in a really stick keephis position. You also see this kind of similar strategy with decks that likethe or beetle healing deck. You see the strategy with the Greens, RestaRam and Charsar deck where they are just trying to heal out or she foodout of the game because you're relying so much on these multi hit Ko's.So what does this mean? If you're a rapid strike or she foo players? Should you drop the deck? Is it not viable? Well, certainlyno, but I think you need to have a really strong game plan headinginto these kinds of matchups. Or, alternatively, you can offer up tojust not give a chance in those matchups...

...and you cut your phoebees play somemore consistency cards, but then you're taking a pretty big risk in the formatright now. That being said, even with those tech cards you don't reallyclear the way completely right. So it's a really a given take and it'sone that I'm not super comfortable making right now. The cargo memtal is justeverywhere at the moment and they are plowing absolutely destroying the rapid striker she foois. It's really unfortunate and they're also, you know, they're sneaking wins againstfire decks with those coding metal energies. It's a tough place out there.If I was to play a rapid strik or she food deck, whichI don't think I would at a tournament right now, I might in likea player's Cup qualifier, I would play that GERACCI variant nine times out often. I think that's the one that almost consistently give you the outs tosqueak out games quickly, especially in those matchups that are a little more grindy. You want to be able to quickly put on the pressure and keep thatup consistently, whereas the Chincino variant will spend a couple turn and setting up, which is really all that decks like that, the cardio, memtal Zashiand like the green chars are need to take an advantage against you. Thereare some other Meta shifts that have been not in rapid strikes favor, tosay the least, a big one being the rise of me two. We'veseen some really interesting mewtub variants, such as the psychic met that is Zultook to a gloom would challenge win on one day, and I mean thatdeck is really difficult for rapid strike to get through. You have that reallypsychic mew to engine with multiple hoods, so you can really easily play aroundthe mimic you and Jerrachi is. Of course, that is something to dealwith, but I mean, even if you're aren't hitting for weakness, youhave tricks like the miraculous duogx, which basically just wipes all that damage offthe board and completely nullifies that multi hit Chao strategy that rapid strikes going for. So it's rough role out there. That's all I mean to say.It's a rough world for your rapid strike players. I would say again,if you're looking to play rapid strike, you should have a really solid gameplan into all your matchups, you should feel very comfortable with the deck andideally you have tricks that, even in some of those rough matchups, giveyou a little bit of an edge. So that's kind of my take rightnow. It's definitely not the best place to be. Not Impossible, though, definitely not impossible. And that's actually a good Seguey, into the cardof the day. I want to keep this episode shortened to the point,so we'll go right into the card of the day and then we'll talk aboutthe Players Cup for and what I'm considering to be the top choices heading intothat. So cart of the day for...

...this week is none other than shadowbox mimic you from cosmic eclipse. They're actually two really good Mimic U's inthe cosmic eclipse set. There is the impersonate one, but the shadow boxone is definitely the one that's been making waves recently. It's kind of acard that fell out of the metaphor a while but shot a box, mikey. What it does is Pokemon Gx have any damage, counters on them haveno abilities. Also as an attack for two colorless tail trickery, or youflip a coin, if heads your opponent's active is now confused. But that'snot really when you play the mimic you, I hope the shadow box ability isreally strong, particularly against that metwo and me tag team gx being ableto shut off it's perfection ability and prevent you from attacking unless they have astealthy hood equipped. So that's obviously incredibly strong. And two matchups like PekaRam that rely on them. You two or obviously straight mew two decks.That can be quite difficult. Another thing that I think I'll shout out forthe mimic you, though, is it's found some really interesting niche uses aswell, you know, and expanded. You can play it and keep thisstore arc suppressed. You can use it in standard with a dragon pult variantto shut off the DRACI G X and then all the sudden be able tohit for weakness on psychically POKEMON. So lots of cool things the Mimicu letsyou do and are really really cool. Thing with the addition of Zigzagoon isyou have a lot of agency over where that damage goes. Previously it wasa little bit more difficult to use that shadow box effectively because you needed tofind a way to damage those pokemon before they did their damage on to you. But with the addition of Zigzagoon, you can now quick ball for anout and be able to place those damage and methodical ways and turn off thoseabilities. So I really like the design of Mimic you and I like,though, that stealthy hood exists in the format alongside of it. So there'sa little bit of give and take between both the ability pokemon and the Mimicyou player, where you know, I could play the Stelly Hood, youcan play the mimic you. Who finds what? How are we building ourdecks to be able to use both of those things? So it's really cool. I like the card a lot, not to mention it's adorable. It'sgot that kind of clay esthetic to it, sitting on a brick road of sortswith a little Bush in the background. Just beautiful. Mimic you in generalhas gotten a lot of really cool cards, both from a design perspectiveas well as a like an art perspective. So Mimic you thanks again for reallykilling it in the card department. But let's get back to players.Cup for. So four Players Cup for we are in the battle style,is not a game and there has been no new sets introduced. So allthis to say that the Meta isn't necessarily...

...rapidly changing to such a dramatic degreethat you've probably aren't aware of what kind of decks are available to you rightnow. I did want to go through some of the best options, inmy opinion, for the Players Cup format, so that way you can maybe usethat to inform your own choices as you go through the Players Cup.One thing I'll emphasize before I talk about deck choice is make sure that youare playing the player's Cup to the best of your ability. There is nowmoney on the line as opposed that travel award, so a little bit moreof a direct compensation for players who do well in the Players Cup. SoI highly, highly encourage you record your games at least in a spreadsheet.It keep track of what's going on, how you're doing, and player hardout like track your prizes, do all the leg work, because if youpotentially end up in like a BI scenario because you ended up in the topof North America or whatever reason that you're playing in, that is a hugedifference maker. Being able to start off on like a much stronger note headinginto the rest of your round is not to be underestimated. That all said, what should you play for the Players Cup? Well, I compiled fortop decks I think I would consider right now, but I will make acouple of honorable mentions. So in the honorable mentioned list I will call outit. Turn it is is still a decent play into this format. Ithangs pretty well with the fire decks and with a phoebe. It can hangwith the Lucardo Mel metals of the world and I would say generally at turnthis has a pretty good matchup against Pikachuw and Zechrom, as well as many, many of them, you two variants which are popular right now. Soa turn is is definitely an honorable mention. Not something I would necessarily play becauseof the prevalence of rapid strike Orshifu v Maax, but something definitely worthconsidering. Another deck that I will shout out here is some of those youtwo variants across the board. So we have things like the psychic mew too. We have grasp, you two a lot of really cool decks that areleveraging me to an interesting ways and honestly a lot of them are quite good. So I don't think any of them is necessarily clear really flat superior tothe others. I think psychic is my favorite of them just in terms ofthis is a really cool deck, a lot of really interesting options, butI would say any of those mewtwo variants are a solid honorable mention there.So one of the top four, four Players Cup for well, and noparticular order. I'll read them out and then I'll explain my reasoning. Sofor the players cut four, I would consider Pikachu and Zecrom tag team Gx, the Cariio me metal gx was Ashen v Welder variants, including Vic tenev and rapid Strikerchifu v Max. So for pretty different decks. But whywould I consider each of those? So...

...let's start with rapid striker. Shefeel I did just kind of rag on rapid strik or she who's place inthe metagame. However, it is overall a very strong deck and hangs verywell with decks that aren't prepared to deal with it. So be it.Your Pikachu and Zech Gram, even with the hood you're still in a prettygood situation. Usually the welder variants you can usually find some tricky situations toand even pretty close match up against ADP, and usually, I'll say this now, you will see more atps the earlier into the Players Cup that youplay. The experience I've had has been the ATPS are usually just throwing fiftyout of fifty eightp games in the first like couple of days or weeks.So that's definitely a factor. So rapid striker she who hangs pretty well witha lot of those decks. The real downfall of rapid strike or she fuis those stricter mewtu variants beat the grass or the psychic as well as theLucario memental decks, and even with Phoebe it's really hard to navigate either ofthose matchups. So I would say if you're expecting to see more peak aram or more welder or more ATP and you're comfortable with the deck, thatrabbit strike is definitely a Surfaceabul option for you. Next up is our weldervariants. So why is welder good right now? Well, I think itgoes without explaining. At welder is pretty effective across the board. Opens upso many options in terms of Pokemon you can play and strategies you can use. I think the most effective welder decks, in my opinion, are the onesthat leverage mewtwo and mew as well as Vic Tinv, so having atool box of fire attackers that can deal with the GX has, as wellas having victin ev Max to clean up on those v Pokemon. Now,granted, I am not a huge fan of welder decks. I don't likethe run hot element that the welder decks typically will introduce into their game plan. But if you're feeling lucky, you feel like you're going to run hotand run fast, then I can't think of a better deck for you thana welter variant. Again, I would recommend having that kind of toolbox ofattackers to really leverage the strength of welter, which is the versatility of attackers thatyou can power up. And if you're expecting a heavy ATP or aheavy Lucaro Mel Metal Metagame, so a very US Ashen centered Meta game,then welder is definitely the choice for you. Next up is that Lucaro memos asshe and deck. I hyped it up quite a bit just now withits drabber strike matchup, and I think that really can't be underestimated. Arabshike is insanely popular right now, being in the ladder or in these earlyplayers cut four tournaments. So being able to sneak some easy wins there isvaluable in of itself. The car me metal also sneaks easy wins against theoff a turn it's deck that you'll see...

...and against quite a few of theone prize variants that you might see. So why might you not play Lucarlmementos ash and then? Well, if you're expecting a lot of fire decks, those decks can be quite a difficult matchup. However, I would sayis an experience of Carra memtal player that you can find ways to navigate them. It's not great, but you can't find those ways and the ATP matchupis pretty close. However, I'd say with the inclusion of some tough Capeof toughness, that you can actually navigate that matchup a little bit easier becauseyou can get through that rusted sword play and most atps are not playing thattool scrapper right now. So I think Lucar memtal is option is in reallya healthy spot at the moment. The matchup I would be most afraid ofis the welders in the peak ROMs. So if you're expecting a lot ofeither of those, I wouldn't play lucarlme metal. But if you're expecting prettymuch anything else, and I think Luke Cardo is a good choice. Sothe only thing that keeps me from playing Lu car onme metal personally is themirror is very grindy, and it's not a bad thing, but it canbe kind of exhausting the play and the fact that it's very match up dependent. So even at the highest level of play you're going to be somewhat relianton your matchup spread to have a good chance of the car me metal.Of course, that's not unique to that deck either. And then last,but certainly not least, on my top four for players cut for is thatPika Chew in Z crome Gx, the deck that just won't die, nomatter how much we want it to. Not that I want it to,but it definitely is the g if that keeps giving. So Pikachu and ZacRam, I don't think it goes, or rather, I don't think Ineed to explain why this deck is still good. Pikachun Zach Ram has awhole plethora of strong attacks that can use. It has the metune me to giveyou additional options versus those psychical we pokemon, or to just give youa toolbox of the tax that you can use at any given moment. You'vegot the thread of paralysis. It's the best user of reset stay up andthe best user of crushing camera in the entire format. So a very disruptivedeck as well. And pikachuon Zcram has some really solid matchups against decks thatare fairly popular. La Carlo me metal is a great example of our Pikachuand Z gram has a good matchup. Be could choose. Also pretty emphatuent, infamously good against Walter variants. And you have a decent ATP matchup,about fifty, I would say, maybe even slightly favored. So plenty ofstuff going on for Pekachun Ze Crom. Why would you not choose to playPikachun Z ram should hopefully be obvious, and that's those ershy Food v Maxdecks. Even with the stealthy hood for your mew two, there's just somuch going on in those or she few decks. That is bad news forpikachunscom player. So if you're expecting a lot of Ershifu, which I thinkis a reasonable assumption heading into these early Players Cup tournaments, then I wouldbe a little bit nervous. However,...

...you have pretty good matchups across theboard. Otherwise, of these decks, the one I would be most likelyto play at an event right this moment would be Lucaro memtals Oshan. Ithink the matchups are really good for it, and I think there's the ones thatare popular at the moment. However, I think there's a lot of agencyand I wouldn't really blame you for taking any of those variants. Solook forward to your players Cup runs. Remember, record your games, don'tget tilted. Take all the lessons that we have tried to impart onto youas a tag team over the last couple months of Players Cup tournaments and turnthose into results. Will be really excited to hear how you're doing and ifyou want to keep us updated, there are some great ways to get aholdof us. For example, we are all on twitter. That's smiles offiles for myself, Real John Walter, for JW Creedwall and tag team Pokemonfor the podcasts account. If you want to catch us live on twitch whenwe're doing more traditional episodes. That's twitch dot TV slash a manner. That'smy twitch channel, and you can also check out jws twitch and Youtube atFlex Daddy righteous. He does awesome streams and great videos. I can't recommendhim enough. That's coming from a genuine place as someone who consumes his content, not as just his podcasting partner. With that will draw this short episodeto a close. I hope you all enjoyed this and if you enjoy thekind of like Solo Dolo effort, definitely let us know and maybe we caninclude some of those from both our perspectives as kind of bonus episodes in newaddition to our weekly content. Otherwise, we will catch you all back herenext week at the TAG team base.

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