Garchomp/Altaria dicussion (ChainChomp)

#1
The latest set Dragons Exalted, of which prereleases have started, has brought us more than 120 new cards. It is also the first set to introduce the Dragon Type. As with most new sets, new deck ideas rise. Today I will give you a new deck which has been getting hype from the masses thanks to its succes in Japan. It is a consistent deck with all used pokemon being from Dragons Exalted. I present to you: ChainChomp AKA FluffyChomp AKA Garchomp/Altaria.

Now I will post my list and explain why I chose certain cards. If you want to know what the new cards are, you can click on the link of the respective card. I will also give some info about filling out your list. Finally, I will post my own current version of the deck with a short explanation. This post will be used as reference for others reading this, so I will try to update this post frequently with things like matchups as we figure them out (like the mirror, right Mekkah?) and new Techs we come across.

My current list.

Pokemon - 19
4 Gible DR 87
4 Gabite DR 89
4 Garchomp DR 90
4 Swablu DR 104
3 Altaria DR
2 Emolga DR

Trainers - 30
4 N
4 Juniper
3 Cheren
2 Bianca

4 Level Ball
4 Pokemon Catcher
2 Rare Candy
2 Switch
2 Super Rod
2 Tool Scrapper

Energy - 11
7 Fighting
4 Blend WLFM

There are 2 Gibles available, but I chose this one since it has 10 more HP and Sand Attack, which let's the opponent flip for attack. This swablu has sing, and the one I didn't pick does not.
I run 4 Juniper, 4 N and 3 Cheren in my list, but the choice is up to you. As long as you have around 11 or 12 supporters in total, you should be okay. I am thinking about dropping the Juniper count, since I don't likediscarding valuable pieces of the deck with Junk Arm being gone.

This deck is so speedy all thanks to Gabite, calling forth all Dragons untill you bench is completely full. The T2 Garchomp with 1 Altaria on the bench is not that hard to get and every player should be able to get the T3 Garchomp. Level Ball also helps this since all pokémon besides Garchomp have an HP under 90, which means you can search them out easily. One Level Ball into Gabite can actually bring 2 or 3 pokemon on the field thanks to Dragon Call.

Emolga is your main starter T1. Its Call for Family attack costs C and you can search your deck for 2 basics and put them on your bench. This is becoming a staple for many Stage 2 decks and is also included here. Nothing is more terrifying than staring down an Emolga with 3 Gibles and 2 Swablus on the bench.

I run 2 Switch for 2 main reasons. One being very simple: Energy preservation. With Super Rod getting back the Garchomp Pieces, you need to preserve your energy as much. Otherwise you might get an energy drought late in the game. Switch helps with this since you now don't need to waste your attachment to retreat your Altaria. This is also why it is smart to always keep and emolga on the field, since it has zero retreat cost. That way you always have a go to pokemon after a knockout. I also run 2 Super Rod and its function is already explained above: getting back my Garchomp and Altaria lines. Without it you only have 4 attackers and you might run out. Super Rod also combo's well with Dragon Call since you can get the pokémon back on the board immediately.

Techs

Rescue Scarf:
I run 2 Rescue Scarf for more recovery. I used to run pokemon Communication, but with 4 Level Ball and Dragon Call, it isn't as needed (that said, i can always change it back). Rescue Scarf can be attached to Altaria to ensure you get it back once it has been catchered up. This also means the opponent will most likely target the other Altaria though. You can also use Rescue Scarf for Garchomps and get Altaria's back with Super Rod, but the problem is is that Swablu is a Normal Type, so you need to either draw it, Level Ball it or CFF (Call for Family) it to get it back to the bench.

Max Potion:
When you use a deck with high HP attackers with a low attack cost, you got to consider Max Potion. I use this 2 copies in my deck just to test it. It can really help in the Darkrai matchup (I think) as you can Max Potion of the damage from Night Spear, but they might be targeting down your Altarias anyway.

Rayquaza:
Rayquaza is a good option for attacking from T2 and putting pressure on opponents. It is also a way for the deck to donk opponents. If you are running this card though, expect to pay a lot and maybe include an Ultra Ball or 2 in the deck. It also needs the Blend Energy to attack so getting it to attack might be troublesome sometimes.


Matchups

Right now, I won't be covering matchups against other decks since I don't know enough yet. Figuring out a certain matchup takes time. This is why I am asking you to also provide matchups so I can post them here.

The deck is faster than the eye meets and is super consistent. So what do
you think about the deck?


(Any new Techs or matchup explanations will be edited into the OP, so that we have a good overview of the qualities of the deck.)
 
#2
I personally like the idea of maxing out rare candy, just because a turn 2 garchomp can really help you out in some games.
I would also either take out the 2 switch and add in 2 more Emolga, or take out Emolga and switch entirely. Switch's only real purpose is to get Emolga into the active spot, so usually it's going to be a dead card late game, which is something that's hard to justify in this upcoming format.
I'm on the fence about rescue scarf...obviously that all depends on how popular tool scrapper is going to be. It's a really awesome card in this deck, but if you know tool scrapper is going to be popular, you'd be better off adding in more super rod and search cards for recovery.
In my list I run just 6 fighting and 4 blend, and I've never had a problem with energy droughts...but I can see an extra fighting being useful if you need to use dragonblade a lot.
I also have max communication, but I'm not sure if that's necessarily :/
All in all, I really like this deck :) Unfortunately, a deck with so many evolution lines leaves very little space for techs and customization...and the loss of junk arm doesn't help either. But it's still a good deck, and I think it will do very well in this new format.
 
#3
-1 Gabite
Too many Gabites, although they are useful, you WILL be using Rare Candy for the most part, I guarantee it.

+2 Emolga

Emolga is the best starter of the new season; you need to guarantee you'll get it out quickly.

+1 Switch

Do you really want an unwanted Pokemon stranded in the Active? Didn't think so.

+1 Super Rod

Having your Energy discarded is not good; Super Rod fixes that. Also lets you stall a little bit before you deck out.

-2 Rescue Scarf

Unneeded; you have a 4-3-4 (4-2-4 with my changes) line anyway, so you should never have a problem with running out of Garchomps.

-2 Max Potion

Max Potion has not done well in my testing; it really just seems to waste space a lot since most of the time your opponent will OHKO your Pokemon (except maybe Garchomp, and even then I find that I don't have an Energy in my hand when I have the Max Potion).

+2 Pokemon Communication

Lets you put extra Emolgas to use for searching out the Pokes you need.

-1 Fighting Energy

Makes room in the deck for everything you need. Garchomp only needs one Energy to attack anyway, so 10 is probably enough.
 
#4
-1 Gabite
Too many Gabites, although they are useful, you WILL be using Rare Candy for the most part, I guarantee it.

+2 Emolga

Emolga is the best starter of the new season; you need to guarantee you'll get it out quickly.

+1 Switch

Do you really want an unwanted Pokemon stranded in the Active? Didn't think so.

+1 Super Rod

Having your Energy discarded is not good; Super Rod fixes that. Also lets you stall a little bit before you deck out.

-2 Rescue Scarf

Unneeded; you have a 4-3-4 (4-2-4 with my changes) line anyway, so you should never have a problem with running out of Garchomps.

-2 Max Potion

Max Potion has not done well in my testing; it really just seems to waste space a lot since most of the time your opponent will OHKO your Pokemon (except maybe Garchomp, and even then I find that I don't have an Energy in my hand when I have the Max Potion).

+2 Pokemon Communication

Lets you put extra Emolgas to use for searching out the Pokes you need.

-1 Fighting Energy

Makes room in the deck for everything you need. Garchomp only needs one Energy to attack anyway, so 10 is probably enough.
I agree with all of this except for switch. Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't really see it being that useful in this deck. Emolga has free retreat. If altaria is catchered it will be KOed. If your opponent catchers a garchomp without energy, all you have to do is attatch one energy and then attack. The only thing I can see it really being useful for is being able to pull off a turn one Call for Family when you don't start with Emolga. But I don't think that's worth 2 or 3 spaces in your deck.
 

Mekkah

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#5
-1 Gabite
Too many Gabites, although they are useful, you WILL be using Rare Candy for the most part, I guarantee it.

No, you want to have as many as 3-4 Gabite in your deck, because you want to chain Dragon Calls turn 2. You suggest only running 2, basically capping your chain at 2 and running into issues if they're prized. Gabite is strong all game, looking for replacement Altarias and Gibles all the time. I love running 4.

+2 Emolga

Emolga is the best starter of the new season; you need to guarantee you'll get it out quickly.

Emolga is great, but it's dead beyond turn 2. Including more than 3 in your list is nonsense, it's a card you never want to draw off an N.

+1 Switch

Do you really want an unwanted Pokemon stranded in the Active? Didn't think so.

2 and 3 Switch are both fine. @Dragonking700, Switch is one of those cards that's more useful in practice than on paper. It has many niche uses that you just can't theorymon for. One reason to run 3 is because it gives you good odds to have it turn 1 to get a Call for Family. Another is because lategame when people are losing, they like to Catcher Altaria and N and hope you don't get Energy or Switch. Switch improves your odds there.

+1 Super Rod

Having your Energy discarded is not good; Super Rod fixes that. Also lets you stall a little bit before you deck out.

The deck has 2 Super Rod as it is. Do you want to have this in your opening hand or something?

-2 Rescue Scarf

Unneeded; you have a 4-3-4 (4-2-4 with my changes) line anyway, so you should never have a problem with running out of Garchomps.

Agree with this, but Twannes already took those out iirc.

-2 Max Potion

Max Potion has not done well in my testing; it really just seems to waste space a lot since most of the time your opponent will OHKO your Pokemon (except maybe Garchomp, and even then I find that I don't have an Energy in my hand when I have the Max Potion).

Depends on preference. I don't like Max Potion that much but it really helps against Darkrai.

+2 Pokemon Communication

Lets you put extra Emolgas to use for searching out the Pokes you need.

No, you don't need Communication between Emolga, Level Ball and Dragon Call.

-1 Fighting Energy

Makes room in the deck for everything you need. Garchomp only needs one Energy to attack anyway, so 10 is probably enough.

And missing an Energy drop is absolutely lethal in this deck, so this is not a no-brainer. Most of my decks run 11-13 Energy. Going to 10 is pretty risky, especially with Sableye in the format.
 
#6
-1 Gabite
Too many Gabites, although they are useful, you WILL be using Rare Candy for the most part, I guarantee it.

No, you want to have as many as 3-4 Gabite in your deck, because you want to chain Dragon Calls turn 2. You suggest only running 2, basically capping your chain at 2 and running into issues if they're prized. Gabite is strong all game, looking for replacement Altarias and Gibles all the time. I love running 4.

I'm going to be honest here; Gabite is overhyped. Whenever I play this deck, I don't find myself needing that many; more often, I find myself with a Garchomp and Rare Candy in hand and ready to evolve a Gible. Besides, 1, occasionally 2 Gabite on the Bench is generally enough to get all of your Dragons out.

+2 Emolga

Emolga is the best starter of the new season; you need to guarantee you'll get it out quickly.

Emolga is great, but it's dead beyond turn 2. Including more than 3 in your list is nonsense, it's a card you never want to draw off an N.

This is kind of like saying you shouldn't run 4 Sableye SF in a deck to go first. Well, yeah, that's a HUGE over-exaggeration, but what I've found when I run this deck is I'm NOT able to get my Emolgas out quickly enough without running 4, and the T1 Call for Family is vital. It also fuels Pokemon Communication when I need it to.

+1 Switch

Do you really want an unwanted Pokemon stranded in the Active? Didn't think so.

2 and 3 Switch are both fine. @Dragonking700, Switch is one of those cards that's more useful in practice than on paper. It has many niche uses that you just can't theorymon for. One reason to run 3 is because it gives you good odds to have it turn 1 to get a Call for Family. Another is because lategame when people are losing, they like to Catcher Altaria and N and hope you don't get Energy or Switch. Switch improves your odds there.

It also gets you out of Paralysis lock, not that many decks use Paralysis anymore. :P

+1 Super Rod

Having your Energy discarded is not good; Super Rod fixes that. Also lets you stall a little bit before you deck out.

The deck has 2 Super Rod as it is. Do you want to have this in your opening hand or something?

No, but even running 3 I rarely ever open with it.

-2 Rescue Scarf

Unneeded; you have a 4-3-4 (4-2-4 with my changes) line anyway, so you should never have a problem with running out of Garchomps.

Agree with this, but Twannes already took those out iirc.

-2 Max Potion

Max Potion has not done well in my testing; it really just seems to waste space a lot since most of the time your opponent will OHKO your Pokemon (except maybe Garchomp, and even then I find that I don't have an Energy in my hand when I have the Max Potion).

Depends on preference. I don't like Max Potion that much but it really helps against Darkrai.

Max Potion is a great card and one that I use in many decks; this just isn't the right deck for it.

+2 Pokemon Communication

Lets you put extra Emolgas to use for searching out the Pokes you need.

No, you don't need Communication between Emolga, Level Ball and Dragon Call.

I'll be honest, I don't really have a satisfactory answer to this. This is really just based on my own decklist that I've been testing with that's been doing pretty well against most decks. Pokemon Communication lets me get that extra Garchomp when all I have is an Altaria without its Swablu or vice-versa.

-1 Fighting Energy

Makes room in the deck for everything you need. Garchomp only needs one Energy to attack anyway, so 10 is probably enough.

And missing an Energy drop is absolutely lethal in this deck, so this is not a no-brainer. Most of my decks run 11-13 Energy. Going to 10 is pretty risky, especially with Sableye in the format.

I rarely run more than 10 Energy in any deck that isn't named Rayquaza EX. I find myself just not needing all the Energy and just having to keep them in hand as dead cards. How much Energy to run can be a pretty tough decision, since you need to run few enough Energy to keep consistent while running enough that you won't end up with Energy deficiency all the time. I only say 10 because it's worked for me.
Quick note, I have playtested quite a bit with this deck and these comments are just what I've noticed from my playtesting.
 
#7
Switch is one of those cards that's more useful in practice than on paper. It has many niche uses that you just can't theorymon for. One reason to run 3 is because it gives you good odds to have it turn 1 to get a Call for Family. Another is because lategame when people are losing, they like to Catcher Altaria and N and hope you don't get Energy or Switch. Switch improves your odds there.
Okay, thanks for the explanation :)
 
#9
This deck is but like Reshiphlosion- not the fastest or the most powerful, but very very consistent and good at both streaming damage and prize racing. It plays very simply- sort of an autopilot deck- and is good for beginners for these reasons. It'll hold up at the top tables, as it is inherently good, but not as much as other more skillful/more capable decks. I can give my input on lists if you want but on my phone it's meh.
 

Zystral

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#10
I hate the deck, personally. Rayquaza absolutely tears it in half. If you're okay with that, then play this.
I really hope you mean Rayquaza DRX-128, not Rayquaza EX. Because if you are, then I have nothing else to say.

Rayquaza does not "tear it in half". Sure, T1 Rayquaza cause donks for the deck, but it isn't something that can't be recovered from. It isn't hard for this deck to set up at least 1 Garchomp, even while something else is in the firing line. Rayquaza 2HKOes Garchomp, whereas Garchomp OHKOes with no Altarias in play. If we're going for an outright race and I open Emolga, then it's serious advantage to this side of the table.

The only way "Rayquaza absoltely tears it in half" is if you were running 4x Rayquaza inside the standard Chain Chomp deck build, because you need two Altaria in play to OHKO opposing Garchomp, and 1 Altaria in play to OHKO Rayquaza in the mirror match. There are two problems here; first of all, I am willing to take the risk that nobody is playing a deck with 4 copies of a $90 card. This isn't Magic: the Gathering or YGO. Secondly, adding 4x Rayquaza to the ChainChomp build fucks your consistency, so if we are indeed racing, while you Dragon Call for your Rayquaza, I'm just going to set up Garchomps and Altaria and break your bench.

Rayquaza is indeed a good card to play against this deck, you will likely slow them down a considerable deal by KOing their Gabites early game, but this is not an instant-win matchup. There are ways of playing around this, PLUS it's possible for the ChainChomp player to recover.



I haven't really played it against enough of the field to give a good judgement on the deck, but Darkrai/Hydreigon is a really tough matchup because unless you have 4 Altaria on the bench and Darkrai has no Eviolite, it is impossible to OHKO Darkrai. Combine with Max Potion shenanigans that the deck is capable of.
You really need to just go for the KOs on Hydreigons to avoid Max Potion being a pain, then chip away at Darkrai. The problem then is, Darkrai consistently wrecks your playing field. Catcher up an Altaria, KO Altaria doing 30 to a Gabite/Garchomp, then next turn if it comes active, KO with Night Spear, hitting another Garchomp. Rinse and repeat.

I think the deck will see some top table finishes at a few events though. It's too fast and too simple to not play. It's also relatively cheap compared to other decks, so I expect people will play it.
 
#11
That's not why Rayquaza is good... It can attack T1 and KO anything besides Emolga and Garchomp itself. Its 2nd attack in a Rayeels build beats Garchomp as well, and teched into Fluffychomp it gives an edge in the mirror and with one Altaria can KO opposing Rayquaza techs to regain board control. If your meta is full of Fluffychomp and Rayeels build to counter Fluffychomp, Rayquaza is a very good 1- or 2-of in a couple of decks.
 

Mekkah

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#12
I use this deck as my testing punching bag because I know that if my deck can't beat it, I need to play something else. Other than that, though, I don't think it's a deck I would play because the mirror is bad and it has no plan B.
 
#13
-1 Gabite
Too many Gabites, although they are useful, you WILL be using Rare Candy for the most part, I guarantee it.

Actually I've played against a tech'd version TONS of times and I can't tell you HOW many times that 3'd Gabite saved my opponent from getting completely wrecked by Darkrai Night Spearing and dropping damage all around. In a pinch that 3rd dragon call allowed him to evolve to Chomp in a rare candy drought.
And that's especially if your opponent is constantly being N happy on you.

+2 Emolga

Emolga is the best starter of the new season; you need to guarantee you'll get it out quickly.

I'd have to say at three, it ended up becoming a dead draw and when the bench is set with 3-4 Pokes, a dead Emolga is only taking up space. I'd say drop it down to even one or two since you can easily start setting up, or search out emol w/ Level Ball if you absolutely need to. Just having more to say "I'll just run comm to get rid of it" shouldn't be necessary while thinning your deck via dragon call, search and supporters. T1 CFF is optimal but just because you don't open it doesn't mean you're instant dead in the water.

+1 Switch

Do you really want an unwanted Pokemon stranded in the Active? Didn't think so.

Switch is good at 3-2 even isn't half bad.

+1 Super Rod

Having your Energy discarded is not good; Super Rod fixes that. Also lets you stall a little bit before you deck out.

1-2 is fine, you don't want to N up rods and you shouldn't be stalling as you don't have a reliable tank-that is unless you run something like...Mewtwo. Or Regi. Which you probably shouldn't.

-2 Rescue Scarf

Unneeded; you have a 4-3-4 (4-2-4 with my changes) line anyway, so you should never have a problem with running out of Garchomps.

Agree'd.

-2 Max Potion

Max Potion has not done well in my testing; it really just seems to waste space a lot since most of the time your opponent will OHKO your Pokemon (except maybe Garchomp, and even then I find that I don't have an Energy in my hand when I have the Max Potion).

I agree-no need for Max Pot because chances are, you're gonna either wrack up kills with 2-3 Altaria sitting on your bench, or you're going to be slightly behind in the prize war and down into you're last few energies. You have no way to move them off like Darkrai Hydreigon does and there's no space nor synergy for Energy Switch.

+2 Pokemon Communication

Lets you put extra Emolgas to use for searching out the Pokes you need.

Drop the Comm's-not too necessary as you're running 4 Level Balls.

-1 Fighting Energy

Makes room in the deck for everything you need. Garchomp only needs one Energy to attack anyway, so 10 is probably enough.

Undecided. I've see it run with 10, I've seen it run with more. Preference?
If you're interested, find space if you can for Terrakions and another rare candy. You have an out to the garbage deck due to Scrapper, but you have no out on a Eviolited Darkrai. Trust me, putting pressure and making it out on top of the prize war against any Darkrai decks is a good plus. And you are already running Fighting energy as it is.

Sorry if I came off as crude I really don't mean to be. D: Hope this gives some food for thought.
 

Zystral

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#14
For what it's worth, today I played my first premier event in a year and a half (BR Sutton Coldfield).

My list was thus:

4-4-4 Garchomp line
4-4 Altaria line
2 Emolga
7 Fighting Energy
4 Blend FLWM
4 Juniper
4 N
4 Cheren
4 Catcher
2 Switch
2 Super Rod
3 Rare Candy
4 Level Ball


I scrubbed out 2-3. My only wins were against junk decks.

Round 1 I played Darkrai with Zoroark. I managed to get set up T2 with 3 Altaria and a Chomp in play with Gabite on bench, although I had two Gibles prized. I managed to KO two Darkrai and a Sableye, leaving them with only a Sableye and two Zorua in play. I lost one Garchomp to Darkrai, but still had a second. Then suddenly out of fucking nowhere, Juniper becomes Zoroark, which suddenly now has two Darkness from Patch. Then Claw appears, and then double Level Ball. That's 140 damage. That KOes Chomp. I just got overturned.

Round 2 I got donked by Mewtwo and DCE vs lone Swablu. I played a second game for fun and utterly humiliated what was otherwise a typical Zekeels list. And by humiliated, I mean I 4-0'd an Eels list with only two Altaria in play at any one time.

Round 3 I'm second with Emolga and Gible. They start Lapras (wtf) and Call into Registeel EX and Zekrom EX (WTF). I set up four Altarias and Garchomp on T3, and KO Lapras. They bring up Registeel with M on it. Then play PokeCenter (WTF?). Then DCE and Triple Laser my Altarias, which I healed using Center in between turns (what the actual fuck). Dragonblade the Registeel, they bring up Zekrom. Then, while powering up Zekrom (lol did you not see me OHKO Registeel), they bench Entei EX. I safely won that.

Round 4 I get donked again by Shiny Rayquaza versus double Gible. Opening hand of Gible, Juniper, Fight, Fight, Catcher, Rare Candy, Gible. Juniper'd into Juniper, N, Blend, Altaria, Garchomp, Cheren, Catcher.

Round 5 I'm up against a guy who's been playing for 3 months and this is his first event ever. Volcarona / Accelgor. In hindsight I feel slightly bad for toying with him in that I could've KOed him so many times, but rather than go for a no-bench KO, I wanted six prizes. Oh well.


In all games I played today, however, regardless of actual matches or friendlies, not once did I ever hit what I needed. Sometimes catcher never came up. Sometimes the Energy just wasn't there. I like to think that today I was pretty on top of my game - I played a good couple of matches against Empoleon and Darkrai/Hydreigon. In nearly every game I took it to 1-0 or 2-0, but I just couldn't reach for the endgame.

I really don't like this deck anymore. The consistency APPEARS to be there, and it kind of is, in a sense. You get Altaria and Garchomps out. But then you need to be annihilating nigh-on everything to keep running, otherwise you run out of steam, and you're relying on fishing for Super Rod to continue, which for me, never happened (only saw Rod in hand three times the entire day). On top of that, if your gameplan gets disrupted, then you also have trouble recovering. Again, Super Rod into harsh Ns don't help in the slightest.

All of that said, however, I don't regret any of today at all. Playing ChainChomp helped me learn two things. 1) how bad a deck it is, and 2) how really to play this format. If you're a new player, then by all means, this is a cheap and simplistic deck. It isn't as easy to play as it first seems (especially the Darkrai/Hydreigon matchup. I really had to stretch myself to win those games), because while the deck has very low upkeep costs, the fact is, it is very high maintenance, and requires a lot of skill - every move you make in this deck matters. Missing energy attachments, playing the wrong trainer, or drawing before you search can all be game-losing plays.

The deck is very good in that it is incredibly reactive - depending on the current board position and what's in your hand, Dragon Calling before Cheren can win you games, whereas playing N in order to fish for Rare Candy to shorten your Chomp Chain can also be the play.

I will fully admit, however, that all of the blame is not on the deck - I did not make perfect plays today. Far from it - I was still stumbling and making mistakes left right and centre. But these were small mistakes that could have been overcome. Even if I played today at the very top of the competition's level, I think I still would have missed the Top Cut (for the record, Americans, we're still doing Top Cut here in the UK), by virtue of the deck not performing as well as it should do.

Today was a learning experience for me. I already knew walking into the event that I would not do well - I was playing ChainChomp, and the room was full of Eels and Darkrai. You have to get lucky to beat Eels and have more skill than I do to beat Darkrai. However, I expected far more from the deck, even ignoring the fuckass retarded donks.

The problem I think is that in reaching for consistency and reliability on your "FluffyChomp" lines, the deck loses resilience and stability in the midgame. My supporter line was fine, but there were times when I had just the wrong one. Sometimes I would Juniper or N hoping to see a certain card out of a 20-card deck, and I would still whiff. The deck's gameplan is linear and simple, sure. And while that does make it "consistent" and "effective", it's also incredibly easy to disrupt, and very difficult to recover, as you have zero backup options.

I think if I were to ever play this deck again at a tournament (I definitely won't), then the following has to happen:
-1 Gabite
-1 Swablu
-1 Altaria
-2 Emolga
+2 Ultra Ball
+2 Bianca
+1 Super Rod
-1 Level Ball
+1 Fighting Energy

I only managed to set up more than two Altaria in one game, against someone who barely had any idea what they were doing. If I had a 2-0 record at that point and were playing one of the eight Darkrai players who made Top, I would've struggled to keep a single Altaria in play. You really need the resilience and ability to continue even if your tempo gets knocked back.

Emolga was a dead card for me every game. Even when I started it. Every time, I just thought "would I really be that worse off without this thing?" the answer was no, every time. I still managed to set up. I still managed to snap eels and Sableye. Emolga helps, sure, but the fact is, you need to open with it for it to be any good, and if you play 4 to maximise that happening, then you are literally adding 3 slots of shit to the deck.

The deck really needs more of a presence in the midgame, when other decks such as Darkrai and Empoleon have set up properly - you can't just rush head on and try to KO shit at that point, because they will laugh their goddamn heads off unless you have all your Altarias in play and you manage to Dragonblade endlessly without milling your supporters. And when Garchomps hit the bin, you need to be able to continue near seamlessly.

A minor point, is that I always notice others playing this deck tend to evolve their Garchomp as early as possible. For those of you trying this deck, this is a bad play. It really doesn't matter if they catcher Night Spear that Gabite, because then you still have a Garchomp in play to pick up the pieces. In fact, assuming you Mach Cut for 100 or Dragonblade for 120 against a Darkrai, and they Catcher then Night Spear a Gabite without healing, you've come out on top - you've traded one prize for two, plus you can Super Rod into the chain all over again.

As well as that, spread your options out. If you're sitting there with a Garchomp active with F, a Gabite, and a Gible (and maybe an altaria or two) in play, you attach Blend to Gible. You need to force your opponent to make a choice. This ties back in with the deck having only a single gameplan - you need to minimize the impact that losing benched units has on you. Losing a Garchomp is bad, sure, but if you load everything up onto Garchomp, and then they kill it, and you fail to attach an energy to the Gabite that just Dragon Called to evolve itself, then you have nothing to show for it. Whereas in the other case, they can choose to take the prize, but then they risk letting you Dragon Call into a Garchomp that the energized Gible can Rare Candy into. Similarly, if they hit either of the benched dragons, the active Garchomp can just continue its rampage, and you are half a turn behind, at worst.


I think that the deck is indeed Tier 2, but I think it is still a bad deck. I would not play it at an event again. It just doesn't have enough winning potential, and deck itself underperforms horrifically. It just never did what I wanted it to do, on top of the fact that I am not the best player; the matchups that you need to win, or are more likely to come across, you need a large amount of skill and experience to come out on top - the deck is low on resources because it isn't very resource intensive, but as a result of that, everything counts. I didn't do the deck justice, in any case, not that it was capable of very much anyway.


TL;DR - Zy loses BR, thinks the deck isn't that great. It's still a viable play at a tournament, I think. I would just never play it myself. If you do decide to play this over Eels or Darkrai for any reason, be prepared to not win.
 

Alakapimp

All washed up
is a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
#15
This is the list I won with:

4 Gible
4 Gabite
3 Garchomp
4 Swablu
4 Altaria
1 Emolga
1 Terrakion
21

4 N
4 Juniper
3 Cheren
11

4 Catcher
4 Level Ball
3 Rare Candy
2 Switch
2 Super Rod
2 Tool Scrapper
1 Ultra Ball
18

6 Fighting
4 Blend
10

The secret is Tackle.
 

zero2exe

Veteran Breeder - Expert Translator
is a Contributor Alumnus
#16
This is the list I won with:

4 Gible
4 Gabite
3 Garchomp
4 Swablu
4 Altaria
1 Emolga
1 Terrakion
21

4 N
4 Juniper
3 Cheren
11

4 Catcher
4 Level Ball
3 Rare Candy
2 Switch
2 Super Rod
2 Tool Scrapper
1 Ultra Ball
18

6 Fighting
4 Blend
10

The secret is Tackle.
I like this list, never thought about running it without gabites. How does this fare against hydreigon decks?
 
#20
Posting a win/play ratio without stating which decks you faced doesn't mean the deck is good or not. They were comparing Garchomp with the other top 2 decks (Eels and Hydreigon/Darkrai), and I agree that on those matchups, Garchomp runs out of steam in the mid-late game
 

zero2exe

Veteran Breeder - Expert Translator
is a Contributor Alumnus
#25
actually you can get an army of Pokemon by turn 2 which is nice for a stage 2 deck. The main issues for the deck not being good are Altaria's fragility and Garchomp's low damage cap.