“Rise of the Thundercats” – 1st Place Kentucky States Tournament Report!

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Hello, Top Deck Nation! My name is Michael McClure and I’m a Master from Kentucky. I don’t have many big wins this season other than Top 64 at Indiana Regionals and now having won Kentucky States. I have thought that M Manectric-EX was one of the best cards in the game since it came out. An attack that can 2HKO almost any Pokémon-EX or Mega and accelerates energy is ridiculously good. When I got Top 64 at Regionals earlier this year, it was with Donphan/Eeveelutions. I played a couple Wobbuffet in that deck and realized how good it actually was when you were able to start with it.

m-manectric-ex-card
Still a powerful card.

Fast-forward to today’s meta-game where almost every deck relies on Shaymin-EX to set up – pun intended — and you have an even more disruptive start with Wobbuffet. Its little helper in this deck is Judge. If you can start Wobbuffet AND Judge on someone turn one then they have to get a draw support card out of five cards, including their top deck, and many decks are so reliant on Shaymin-EX that this can be difficult. While the Wobbuffet is active, you have M Manectric-EX to set up.

Ideally, you want to start Wobbuffet with Manectric-EX on the bench, attach to Manectric-EX, turn one Judge, then turn two Float Stone, mega evolve, attach, retreat, and Turbo Bolt. Right now you’re probably thinking that these first two turns sound difficult to pull off, especially without the help of Shaymin-EX, but if you build your deck to maximize your turn one strategy then it’s very doable. Once you get the deck set up, you can attack with M Manectric-EX, then use Wobbuffet to hit for 120 while also shutting off their Abilities and giving your M Manectric-EX a turn to heal with Rough Seas or to mess with the prize trade. Let’s get into the list!


The Winning List

Pokémon: 12
Trainers: 36Energy: 12
4 Manectric-EX (PHF)
3 M Manectric-EX (PHF)
3 Wobbuffet (PHF)
1 Jolteon-EX (GEN)
1 Lugia-EX (AOR)
4 Judge
4 Professor Sycamore
2 Lysandre

3 Rough Seas

4 VS Seeker
4 Trainers' Mail
4 Ultra Ball
3 Acro Bike
3 Manectric Spirit Link
2 Battle Compressor
2 Float Stone
1 Professor's Letter
6 Lightning
4 Psychic
2 Flash

Card Choices

4-3 M Manectric-EX

This is pretty standard in most M Manectric-EX decks so there’s not much to say about it.

3 Wobbuffet

You will never need all 3 Wobbuffet in a game, but you play this many so you can get it into the active spot turn one and will usually Battle Compressor one away later.

1 Jolteon-EX

I personally didn’t own this card so I borrowed it from my friend, Wes, but everyone knows how good it is. It gives you an auto-win to Night March, which traditionally had been a good matchup for M Manectric-EX, but Puzzle of Time has made it a little more difficult. Another thing to note is the free retreat. This gives you another out to turn one active Wobbuffet.

1 Lugia-EX

This is the only thing in the deck that can OHKO a Gallade. It obviously helps against fighting decks too, but Gallade is the main reason I play it.

judge-card
Don’t Judge me.

4 Judge

This might sound ridiculous since most decks only run 1, but a turn one Wobbuffet/Judge combo can sometimes be an auto-win. This deck is all about maximizing the chances of that combo happening.

Also, I think the card is underrated in general. It can be early game disruption for set up and late game hand disruption. Everyone gives N the love it deserves, but no one seems to give Judge the credit that it’s due. Let’s talk a little about the tournament now!


Tournament Report

Day 1

Round 1: Vespiquen/Gallade – Intentional Draw (ID) (0-0-1)

I was paired up against my friend and neither of us wanted to start out with a round 1 loss so we decided to ID. We played just for fun and each of us took a game when time was called for the round so it would have been a tie anyway. Side note, I don’t think I’d recommend an ID round 1 in a 7 round tournament even if it’s with a friend. It’s probably better for one of you just to get the win.

Round 2: Win (1-0-1)

I think this was Seismitoad, but I honestly can’t remember. Either way, it was an easy game.

Round 3: M Scizor-EX/Crobat – Win (2-0-1)

This was with another friend and he had actually played my friend I was paired up against round 1 his previous round. In my head this sounds like a pretty easy match-up because I resist metal, but with bats he can 2HKO M Manectric-EX and he was able to keep my Rough Seas out of play by using M Scizor-EX’s attack that allows him to discard a Stadium or a Special Energy attached to the Defending Pokémon. I took games 1 and 3.

Round 4: ??? – Win (3-0-1)

I think this was Yveltal, but I can’t remember this one either. (I really should have done this report sooner so I didn’t forget things)

Round 5: Greninja – Loss (3-1-1)Greninja-BKP

Terrible match-up. I don’t think I took more than two prizes either game. Greninja seems like it would be a good match-up because you can heal with Rough Seas and cycle M Manectric-EX or shut off Greninja’s ability with Wobbuffet, but when Rough Seas is out, Greninja can cycle because of free retreat and still snipe on the bench.

When you go the Wobbuffet route, Greninja plays Silent Lab to shut Wobbuffet off while still keeping their own Abilities and it ends up being an easy prize. This was my only loss during swiss.

Round 6: Trevenant BREAK – Win (4-1-1) This is a super easy matchup. You get a couple M Manectric-EX out and cycle them while focusing on keeping Rough Seas out. It doesn’t matter that you can’t play Spirit Links and have to end your turn because you have enough HP to take a couple hits, especially with Rough Seas. At one point he used an Espeon-EX to devolve my Megas and try to slow me down, but it broke the Item lock and I could play Spirit Links and Mega evolve again.

Round 7: Fright Night Yveltal/Crobat – Win (5-1-1)

My last round was against another friend. We all made fun of him for playing what sounded ridiculous, but he ended up almost cutting with it. It was a spooky deck, but a super easy match-up. The entire deck was baby and Fright Night Yveltals and bats. The idea was to be a hard counter to Night March, but it ended up doing well against other things as well.


Day 2

rough-seas-card
The key to beating Greninja.

Top 8: Greninja – Win

Zach Carmichael, who happens to be the founder of Top Deck Nation, was my only loss during swiss and I had to play him again Top 8 on day 2. I spent all night and morning thinking and asking people how I win the match-up, but pretty much everyone, including myself, thought it was unwinnable.

I lost game 1 almost as badly as I had in our day 1 matches, but it let me figure out that the best way to play the match-up was to hold my Rough Seas until the end and he had hopefully discarded all his Silent Lab, then I’d also need a Lysandre so I could pull the Greninja BREAK he’d retreat off the bench after hitting it with a Turbo Bolt.

If I got rid of a BREAK, then it slowed his damage output enough to make it winnable with Rough Seas. This was definitely better than the previous strategies I had tried including targeting his Octillery, not playing Rough Seas at all, keeping Rough Seas out constantly, and out speeding him. Even with this better strategy, part of the reason I won the second game was also because he had bad prizes, including Fisherman, Lysandre, and Frogadier.

Time was called one turn into game 3 and my deck can take a prize faster than Greninja can. I think I figured the match-up the best that I could, but only won because of top cut rules. Overall, it’s a bad match-up and if there’s Greninja in your meta-game I wouldn’t recommend this deck.

Top 4: M Manectric-EX/Glalie-EX – Win

I saw that I was playing a M Manectric-EX water deck and assumed that meant Regice, but he actually played Glalie-EX instead! Against Regice you just have to try to deck the other person out while cycling M Manectric-EX and healing because you have no non-EX attacker other than Wobbuffet, and with Rough Seas his damage never sticks.

I lost game 1 – it was close, but he set up faster and ended up winning. Game 2 he had a Shaymin-EX start. I killed this Shaymin-EX then he ended up having to play another down to try to set up faster since he was behind and I won the game. Game 3 he started Glalie-EX and that let me set up first, which is most of what the mirror is all about.

Finals: Seismitoad-EX/Giratina-EX – Win

The final game in the tournament was against Seismitoad-EX/Giratina-EX. This was a really interesting match-up because my M Manectric-EX can’t hurt his Giratina-EX, but have a great match-up against Seismitoad-EX. He also played a 1-1 Slowking line. I lost game 1 because this Slowking caused trouble and kept me from attacking by piling useless Psychic Energy on one of my benched M Manectric-EX.

lugia-ex-card
Aero Ball’ing to victory!

Game 2 I killed his Slowpoke (or maybe he evolved it first, I can’t remember) before it caused too much trouble. Once I had that out of the way I focused on setting up Jolteon-EX and he didn’t have an answer to it. By game 3 we had both figured out each other’s decks and how we needed to play. He made sure he Head Ringer’d and killed my Jolteon-EX before I got it attacking and I made sure I got rid of his Slowpoke before he could evolve it. We traded prizes and it ended up being 1-2 left with his lead.

I Lysandre’d a Seismitoad-EX and used Turbo Bolt, but he used AZ leaving himself with just a Giratina-EX and attacked my M Manectric-EX. I played my Lugia-EX for the first time all tournament, retreated into a healthier M Manectric-EX, and used Turbo Bolt for no damage to attach to Lugia-EX. He attacked my M Manectric-EX and I used Judge, retreated to Lugia-EX, and used Aero Ball. He couldn’t find the Lysandre so I won the game.


Conclusion

Overall, I think the deck has great match-ups other than Greninja and Lucario-EX in standard. If I were to play the deck again I would add a Max Potion, but I’m not sure what I would cut. Looking forward with this deck, I think it could potentially be made into an Expanded deck, but I wouldn’t play it because of Landorus-EX.

Because of the new additions in Fates Collide, I wouldn’t play it in Standard either. Zygarde-EX and Regirock-EX are too good to not see play, and if you’re in a fighting heavy metagame, this deck obviously isn’t a good play. This deck is really fun to play and if you get a chance to before the next set comes out, I’d definitely recommend it. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed this article!

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Michael McClure is a Masters player from Louisville, Kentucky. Some of his notable accomplishments include Top 64 at Regionals and 1st place at Kentucky State Championships.

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