Hello everyone! This is Elena from Gaia Storm TCG, and it is a pleasure to be here again at Po Town Store. Today, we will cover the most consistent and reliable deck in the entire format: Arceus Inteleon. Let’s see what makes this a strong pick for Worlds and any other competitive tournament!

Why play the Inteleon version?

There are currently a lot of possible Arceus variants in the format due to the incredible versatility that Arceus VSTAR has. To name a few, I am sure you are familiar with decks like Arceus Duraludon VMAX, Arceus Gyarados VMAX, Arceus Malamar VMAX or Arceus Charizard.

Because Arceus VSTAR can be combined with practically every other card in the format, it lets the player alternate between different attackers to make sure there is always a way out in every wave of the metagame. Don’t forget that the last North America International Championship winner was none other than Arceus with Flying Pikachu VMAX because the Lightning type gave it the advantage against Palkia VSTAR, another very powerful strategy.

Arceus VInteleon

All of the variants listed above are great and have their weaknesses and strengths, but if I had to pick one, I would know my decision: Arceus Inteleon. Unlike the others, the Inteleon build revolves purely around Arceus. It does not run any secondary V Pokémon that can hit for weakness, but it is the most solid deck in existence. I would dare to go even further and say that the deck has no real lousy match-up of weakness, considering you don’t prize your key cards or that you open with an unplayable hand.

There are two main reasons why I think Arceus Inteleon is so strong:
  1. Inteleon gives you access to almost any card you need, turn after turn, as opposed to relying on supporters or random draws to get them. Sure, many Arceus versions also run a consistent drawing engine with Bibarel from Brilliant Stars. Still, at the end of the day, if you are looking for a particular card, you need to rely on probabilities and percentages to get them. Inteleon gives you fewer resources, but they will be the ones you need.
  2. It is one of the very Arceus versions that can miss the turn one energy attachment and still attack in the following turn. Let me elaborate more on that point because it is crucial. As you know, an Arceus player will always want to put down an Arceus on the field and attach energy so that next turn, they can use the VSTAR ability, search for the Double Turbo Energy and go from there. However, if you don’t open with energy in your hand, you are in trouble, which will typically result in a great tempo loss. With Inteleon, however, you can overcome this situation if you send water energy to the discard pile, use Drizzile to search for a Melony and use it into Arceus. This live-saver play can make the difference between winning and losing.

The List

Now that we have already laid the bases of the deck, let’s go together through a sample decklist:

Pokémon (19)

Trainers (31)

Energy (10)

4x Arceus V BRS 1661x Roxy PR-SW 1212x Capture Energy DAA 201
1x Dunsparce FST 2073x Level Ball BST 1812x Double Turbo Energy ASR 216
3x Arceus VSTAR BRS 1842x Big Charm RCL 2066x Water Energy CIN 124
1x Manaphy BRS 412x Cheren’s Care BRS 168
4x Sobble CRE 411x Roxanne ASR 188
4x Drizzile SHF 991x Ultra Ball SUM 161
2x Inteleon SHF 1001x Avery CRE 187

2x Path to the Peak ASR 213

2x Boss’s Orders RCL 189

2x Scoop Up Net RCL 207

1x Choice Belt ASR 211

1x Pal Pad SSH 172

1x Professor’s Research SSH 201

4x Quick Ball SSH 216

1x Raihan EVS 202

3x Evolution Incense SSH 163

1x Ordinary Rod SSH 215

1x Training Court FST 282

1x Melony CRE 195

Arceus Inteleon decklist

Of course, there are a few changes that you can make so that this list fits your playing style, but I think it is a very solid starting point.

Pokémon line

Arceus VSTAR

Since Arceus is our most crucial Pokémon, we must run four copies of it and a very thick line of Intelon and its pre-evolutions. Searching cards is, in my opinion, more important than putting damage counters in the field, so that is why we run two copies of Intelon from Sword and Shield instead of a split line with one copy from Chilling ReignInteleon. Inteleon and Arceus are basically all that we need during the games unless we are playing against something that can hit us for weakness or that can spread damage. In that case, we will search for Manaphy and/or Dunsparce and bench them as soon as possible.


A possible addition to the Pokémon side will be the inclusion of Zigzagoon from Sword and Shield. It can help reach very key numbers against non-evolved V Pokémon. Considering Arceus has a Double Turbo Energy attached and a Choice Band, Zigzagoon can provide you with the extra counter you need to KO Pokémon that has 220 HP like Arceus, Palkia, Dialga and some others.


Cheren’s Care

Something that I really like about this deck is that it has access to very disruptive cards that provide a great advantage. The most important element here is that you have virtual access to 4 copies of Cheren’s Care (the two that you are running and the use of Pal Pad), which will allow you to heal your Arceus VSTAR fully and negates prizes for your opponent. If you can successfully pull the “Cheren loop” for a couple of turns, it is very difficult for your opponent to win. Roxanne from Brilliant Stars can completely change the course of the game, and Avery is a pain for decks that rely a lot on benching Pokémon like Regigigas or Palkia.

Ultra Ball

Then, if you find some space, I would also recommend you consider adding more copies of Ultra Ball. Ultra Ball has a cost but will help you search for any Pokémon you need, and getting the turn 2 Arceus VMAX in play is a must.

Match Ups

As I said before, I think that as long as you don’t draw awfully, Arceus has a very decent match-up against everything in the metage, and, in fact, most games will be decided by who goes first and starts attacking. But Arceus Inteleon doesn’t have a very unfavourable match-up against virtually no other deck.

Palkia: Even/Slightly Unfavorable

The star match of the format. To be honest, I’ve tested this a lot, and it is very, very close. The player that wins the coin flip and can start damaging the opposing VSTAR typically has the advantage, but Arceus can perfectly compete against the almighty Palkia VSTAR. If Arceus limits its bench space effectively, Palkia has a very difficult time to KO it, and it all comes down to how many Cherens the Arceus player can use.

One Prizers: Very Favorable

One prizer decks (that is, decks that focus on attacking with cards that only give one prize if they fall, like Malamar from Chilling Reign, Regigigas or Zoroark Toolbox) can’t do much against continuous Cheren’s Care loops. They struggle to get the necessary amount of damage to KO Arceus in just one hit because, bear in mind that Big Charm gives Arceus a total of 310HP. As such, all Arceus needs to do is to use Cheren a couple of times to negate prizes and/or use Dreo to punish their set up.

Mew VMAX: Even / Slightly Favorable

Of course, because Mew is one of the most aggressive Pokemon TCG/Online decks in the format, it can easily win against Arceus if it KOs the only Arceus you have on the field before it can attack. However, I am inclined to say the match is overall slightly favourable to Arceus because of the number of Charms you run and the fact that Roxanne + Path to the Peak can effectively leave Mew without resources in the late game.

Other Arceus Variants: Slightly Favorable

Of course, this type of match-up has different layers because the one that attacks first (and accelerates energies) has a huge advantage, but I think that Arceus Inteleon has a slightly better game overall because of the searching power of Arceus Inteleon. The only problem is that these games can last forever because Cheren makes it almost impossible to get quick KOs.


Choosing the right deck for Worlds or other big tournaments is not easy at all, but sometimes, it is better to stick to something that you know will give you a close chance against the rest of the strategies than trying to reinvent the wheel. Arceus Inteleon is one of the most consistent decks we have right now and a very safe play. It has virtually no hard counters and can perfectly compete against the rest of the decks in Standard.
If you want to build this amazing deck, remember that you can get your PTCGO codes here at PoTown Store and have it available in the blink of an eye. Thanks so much for reading, and we will see each other soon!

About the writer

Elena has been playing Pokémon TCG for years and leads one of the biggest TCG-dedicated channels in the world. You can find her on Youtube & Twitch (@gaiastormtcg) as well as on other social media channels. Don’t forget to check them out!