Posted by Zach Lesage on 6/8/2021 to
Yoooooo, what’s poppin’ Po Town readers? Are you getting hyped for the Players Cup 4? I know I am! After grinding out my 50 keys, I finished with 150 Tournament Reps to qualify for the Regional Qualifier in North America! This article aims to showcase some of my favorite decks heading into this event to help you prepare for this event. If you didn’t qualify for the Players Cup 4, you can still read along to learn more about our ongoing metagame and explore these amazing decks. If you need any cards to prepare for this event or you need Pokemon TCG Online codes, PoTown Store is a great place to pick them up! That being said, let’s jump into these Pokemon decks.
Pikachu & Zekrom-GX (Team Up) sits in a special place in my heart because this same Pokemon deck allowed me to win the Players Cup 2 event! Now, I want to start off by saying I don’t have a bias for this deck, and I often hold it to much higher standards. The fact is, PikaRom has been crushing events since it was released in Team Up. Top World Championship finishes an International Championship win, a Players Cup 2 win, and recently placingsecond at Players Cup 3. Its resume surpasses most other decks, and that’s because it is absolutely one of the best decks around! Let’s look at my current list for this awesome Pokemon deck.
|1x Crobat V SHF 44||3x Cherish Ball UNM 191||3x Speed Lightning Energy RCL 173|
|1x Eldegoss V CPA 5||4x Crushing Hammer SSH 159||10x Lightning Energy SWSH Energy 4|
|4x Boltund V RCL 67||1x Chaotic Swell CEC 187|
|2x Dedenne-GX UNB 195||4x Quick Ball SSH 179|
|2x Pikachu & Zekrom-GX PR-SM 168||2x Big Charm SSH 158|
|1x Raichu & Alolan Raichu-GX UNM 221||2x Air Balloon SSH 156|
|1x Tapu Koko TEU 51||3x Boss's Orders SHF 58|
|2x Mewtwo & Mew-GX PR-SM 191||4x Professor's Research SHF 60|
|2x Reset Stamp UNM 206|
|4x Marnie SSH 169|
|4x Switch SSH 183|
The strategy of this Pokemon deck is to use Boltund V (Rebel Clash) to power up one of your Tag Team Pokemon to attack in the right situation. It’s usually best to power up Mewtwo & Mew-GX (Unified Minds) because it can copy any attack from your GX Pokemon. Still, you need to watch out for potential counters, such as Mimikyu (Cosmic Eclipse). In most cases, you want to use Full Blitz to power up another Mewtwo & Mew-GX and use Raichu & Alolan Raichu-GX (Unified Minds) in the late game to Paralyze your opponent’s Pokemon. The combination of Energy acceleration, attack options, and disruption cards is unparalleled. The reason why this deck is super good is that it has many neutral matchups. Sure, you might struggle against an Altaria (Champions Path) deck, but you can go toe-to-toe with most of the best decks in the format. This deck requires plenty of skill to pilot correctly, and the challenge is exhilarating, to say the least.
TempoZard is the common name for a Welder (Unbroken Bonds) deck that features the trio of Reshiram & Charizard-GX (Unbroken Bonds), Blacephalon (Unbroken Bonds), and Cramorant V (Sword and Shield). This deck has consistently been improving its online results, and that is due to players experimenting with this deck and the recent release of Galarian Rapidash V (Promo). As this deck continues to become better crafted to perfection and players gain the necessary skill set to play this deck to its fullest, the deck becomes almost unstoppable! Let’s check out this hot list!
|1x Cramorant V SHF 54||2x Cherish Ball UNM 191||14x Fire Energy SWSH Energy 2|
|1x Crobat V SHF 44||4x Giant Hearth UNM 197|
|1x Galarian Zigzagoon SHF 151||4x Welder UNB 189|
|2x Blacephalon UNB 32||4x Quick Ball SSH 179|
|2x Reshiram & Charizard-GX PR-SM 201||2x Pokémon Communication TEU 152|
|4x Jirachi PR-SM 161||1x Boss's Orders SHF 58|
|1x Galarian Rapidash V PR-SW 111||4x Fire Crystal UNB 173|
|1x Mew PR-SM 215||4x Scoop Up Net RCL 165|
|1x Mewtwo PR-SM 214||4x Switch SSH 183|
|1x Oricorio-GX CEC 95|
The strategy of this Pokemon deck is simple at its core, Welder to various Pokemon to attack, but it becomes increasingly difficult to make correct decisions throughout the game because of the many decision paths per turn. Jirachi (Team Up) is the culprit of the difficulty of playing this deck because you often need to ask yourself questions while you’re playing. “What do I need this turn?” “How can I improve my chances of hitting a Welder?” “How can I acquire a bunch of Fire Energy?” You often need to play cards before or after Jirachi to improve your chances one way or another. Maybe you need to use Giant Hearth (Unified Minds) to thin out your deck, so you have a better chance of ripping a Welder off of Jirachi’s Stellar Wish. It's difficult to explain at times, but this deck can be difficult to play at a higher level. Now that I have that explained, I want to play this deck because of its strong matchup spread. It does particularly well against Victini VMAX (Battle Styles), Lucario & Melmetal-GX (Unbroken Bonds), and more! It can also hold fairly neutral matchups against most of the top decks, but it can struggle with consistency issues at times. I’m going to do everything I can to get this list perfect before the event and see which archetype I want to commit to for Players Cup 4.
Rapid Strike Urshifu
Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX (Battle Styles) just won the Players Cup 3, and the metagame might be shaping up for the archetype to win back-to-back major events. When it comes to looking into the potential best Pokemon decks for future events, like the Players Cup 4, it's often a great idea to look into the past. Similar to Pikachu & Zekrom-GX, this deck has proven that it can be extremely successful in its short lifespan, and I think that it is certainly resilient. My list hasn’t changed too much recently, but I think this is the current best way to play the deck.
|1x Crobat V SHF 44||1x Escape Rope BST 125||4x Rapid Strike Energy BST 140|
|1x Galarian Zigzagoon SHF 151||1x Karate Belt UNM 201||5x Fighting Energy SWSHEnergy 6|
|4x Rapid Strike Urshifu V BST 153||4x Quick Ball SSH 179|
|3x Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX BST 170||3x Pokémon Communication TEU 152|
|2x Dedenne-GX UNB 195||2x Air Balloon SSH 156|
|4x Jirachi PR-SM 161||3x Boss's Orders SHF 58|
|1x Jirachi-GX UNM 79||4x Scoop Up Net RCL 165|
|1x Mew PR-SM 215||4x Professor's Research SHF 60|
|1x Mimikyu CEC 97||1x Great Catcher CEC 192|
|4x Marnie SSH 169|
|4x Switch SSH 183|
|2x Martial Arts Dojo UNB 179|
The strategy of this Pokemon deck is to hit hard with Gale Thrust with Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX to start getting damaged on the board to set up multi Prize Card turns with G-Max Rapid Flow. Similar to TempoZard, this deck uses Jirachi as an engine to get the Trainers necessary to make this deck work. There are a handful of tricks that this deck has up its sleeve in order to jump into games, and those include Galarian Zigzagoon (Sword and Shield), Karate Belt (Unified Minds), and Rapid Strike Energy (Battle Styles). Galarian Zigzagoon helps with hitting correct numbers, Karate Belt allows you to attack quicker if you’re behind, and Rapid Strike Energy makes G-Max Rapid Flow a reality. There are plenty of other side strategies to discover within this deck, and I think it is becoming better positioned within our metagame.
Best of Luck
Whether you’re playing or cheering on your favorite pro player, the Players Cup 4 looks like it's shaping up to be an exciting event for everyone! I’m stoked to test these Pokemon decks out with my teammates to determine which one is the best play for the event and try my chances at becoming the champ! If you need any codes for your own testing or collection, PoTown Store is one of the best places to pick up cards for PTCGO.
About the Writer
Zach Lesage is a contributing writer for PoTown Store. As a Toronto local, he has been playing the Pokemon Trading Card Game since 2005 and creates Pokemon content as his full-time career. He creates YouTube content, coaches players to become better in-game, and provides hot takes on his Twitter. With multiple prestigious accomplishments in the game, such as the 2020 Players Cup 2 Champion and 2020 Oceania International Championships Finalist, he has proven his success in the game. Outside of the game, he travels the world, enjoys the culture of designer streetwear, and is a professionally trained chef. You can catch him at most Pokemon events and follow him on Twitter @ZachLesagePTCG.