The Magnetic Metal Monstrosity

Introduction

As revealed in the Meet the Staff (that Didn’t Quite Make it to the Underground) article, I have had an irresistable, magnetic attraction for Magnezone ever since I started playing. Although I can’t fully explain this electromagnetism, it might be due to the following:

* It was one of the first Lv.X cards I ever drew in a Prerelease tournament, and it was love at first sight.

* It is an incredibly versatile deck, perhaps more than any other build. Options are great!

* It is a Stage 2 evolution, and I’ve always had a bias for the big dogs (probably something to do with being a Pokédad)

* It is very challenging to master, probably similar to the Arceus build.

* It does not see common play. I avoid the word “rogue” even though Sarah Palin would probably approve. I generally don’t like running top tier-published decks and would rather lose with a unique deck (which might explain why I didn’t finish in the top 500 at Nationals). But I love beating top tier decks with something they aren’t used to seeing. I played Jumpluff/Vileplume this past Battle Roads and ended up with a winning record and beating all the top decks at different points. Some players just like to win; I like to win (and lose) with style.

Before diving in to this article, I have to make a confession. The truth is, I’m not an expert, Underground-quality player, and probably never will be. (Act surprised. It might make me feel a little better.) However, I would argue that I am an expert Magnezone player and have probably logged more tournament and testing hours with it than just about anyone else in the past 2 years. Unfortunately, Magnezone just hasn’t been fast enough for the recent metagame, and I had to reluctantly and gingerly place him back in our binders for Battle Roads. However, with the Triumphant release, I’ve seen some electrifying potential and polished his metal finish one more time. And I’m convinced this is his time to turn on the power in the current format.

For those of you wondering what makes Magnezone such an amazing deck to play, here are a few things that I think make it such a great option:

* Energy manipulation. The “Electric Trans” Poké-Power on the Lv.X is one of the best in the game for energy manipulation.

* Energy recovery. Magnezone can recover Lightning and Metal energy, even special metal!

* Type changing. You can evolve into either a Steel or Lightning Magnezone, giving you a type advantage when needed.

* Power build. I can’t think of another deck that is better at growing stronger as the game progresses. In fact, I would argue that it is darn near impossible to win a match against Magnezone if it gets fully set up.

* Metal Tanking. Magnezone can take advantage of damage reduction through the use of Special Metal Energy.

* Plethora of Poké-Powers. It’s a blast to use 4-6 Poké-Powers in 1 turn and watch your opponent’s frustration.

* Play options. Magnezone has so many options and can adapt to different game scenarios. For example, it can:
– Snipe your opponent’s benched Pokémon
– Hit and switch (and keep a trainer lock on)
– Paralyze with the Level X
– Dish out massive damage with Magnezone Prime

mags

Magnezone – Gotta Catch ‘Em All! But You Can’t Play ‘Em All!

One of the challenges when building a Magnezone deck is deciding which ones to use. I have no idea why they have created so many (one of those Pokémon empire secrets), but it does present some challenges. My article will focus on the following 4 Magnezone:

SF 5 Magnezone, AKA “Search Magnezone”.

This Metal monstrosity is extremely helpful in setting up your Magnezone
by using its “Magnetic Search” Poké-Power to search for any Lightning or Metal Pokémon each turn. He also has a couple of decent attacks, one of which lets you snipe for 30 damage.

SF 6 Magnezone, AKA “Switch Magnezone”.

This supercharged Pokémon is essential in Magnezone’s energy recycling abilities. It also has a switch attack for LCC that does 60 damage.

TR 96 Magnezone, AKA “Magnezone Prime”.

The newest addition to the Magnezone family, Magnezone Prime has a great Poké-Power called “Magnetic Draw” that lets you draw cards until you have 6 in your hand. It also has a devastating “Lost Burn” attack for LC that does 50 damage times the number of energy cards you have in play and place in the Lost Zone. Although very costly, it can effectively knock out even tank Pokémon.

Magnezone Lv.X, AKA …well, never mind.

It’s just Magnezone Lv.X. What more do you need to say? This guy’s “Electric Trans” Poké-Power allows you to move Lightning and Metal Energy around to any of your Pokémon as often as you like. It also has the “Cyber Shock” attack that dishes out 80 damage and paralyzes your opponent’s active Pokémon.

Deck Build Strategy

Pokémon – 20
4 Magnemite SF
3 Magneton SF
1 Magnezone SF
1 Magnezone SF
1 Magnezone Prime
1 Magnezone Lv.X
4 Spiritomb AR
1 Azelf
1 Smeargle UD
1 Unown Q
2 Uxie LA
1 Regice LA

T/S/S – 24
4 Broken Time Space
2 Bebe’s Search
2 Pokémon Communication
2 Pokémon Collector
3 Seeker
2 Expert Belt
2 Palmer’s Contribution
4 Rare Candy
1 Luxury Ball
2 JudgeEnergy – 16
4 Special Metal
6 Lightning
4 Call
2 Warp

Here are explanations of some cards in this deck:

Spiritomb.
The primary setup Pokémon in the deck. A perfect start would be Spiritomb active with a Call Energy and 1-2 Magnemite on the bench. He can also be used later in the game to maintain a Trainer lock with Switch Magnezone.

4/3/4 Magnezone line.
I like the Stormfront Lightning-type Magnemite the best. Magnemite are just plain wimpy, and you have to pick which one is the least bad. I also like the Stormfront Steel-type Magneton as it has a couple of attacks that can be useful in some situations. And I’ve explained the Magnezone in other sections. I choose to run 3 Magneton in order to balance the Spiritomb evolution attack and its Trainer lock effect that prevents Rare Candy.

Azelf.
With running so many unique Magnezone, it’s important to be able to grab any one of the 4 that might be prized.

Uxie.
Not explanation needed. Great set up card.

Smeargle/Unown Q.
A second set up card that comes in handy, especially when facing Sablelock.

Regice.
A way to force your opponent to switch Basics when needed and to discard unneeded cards or energy in order to maximize Magnezone Prime’s draw power and Search Magnezone’s energy recycling powers.

Rare Candy/Broken Time-Space.
Add needed speed to stage 2 decks.

Warp Energy/Seeker.
These give Magnezone the ability to switch and heal when needed.

Expert Belt.
Gives some extra damage potential, especially with Magnezone Prime’s attack to put 2 energy in the Lost Zone and dish out the magic 110+ damage to KO most SP Lv.X cards.

Set Up

The ideal start is with Spiritomb and Call Energy to begin setting up your Magnezone. Normally, I would recommend setting up your Search Magnezone first in order to get your other Magnezone set up quickly. The key is to stall as long as possible to set up all 3 Magnezone and continue adding energies. You may need to sacrifice 1-2 Spiritomb before your Magnezone are ready for offense.

Pro Magnezone Play

Here are some pro Magnezone moves to give you the ultimate edge in match-ups.

Magnezone Prime’s Lost Burn.
There are 2 key times in a match to use Magnezone Prime’s Lost Burn attack. The first is when your opponent gets off to a great start and has a powerful, active Pokémon ready to dish out mega damage each turn. In this situation, it is worth giving up 2-4 energy cards to KO this Pokémon in order to slow your opponent down. The second time is closer to the end of the match in order to KO your opponent’s last 2-3 Pokémon in order to secure the victory, as you won’t need to keep the energy in play.

Warp Energy/Seeker.
These cards are absolutely devastating in this deck! With these cards, you can pull off some incredible moves, including:

* Healing a damaged Magnezone. This is the most common use for this combo. After attaching a warp energy, send up another Magnezone and Electic Trans all Lightning and Metal Energy to the new Magnezone. Then, scoop up the damaged Magnezone with Seeker and put it right back down with Broken Time Space.

* Poké-Power Reuse. You ideally want to save your Seekers for healing, but you can also use Seeker to reuse other Poké-Powers. For example, you can scoop up a benched Uxie and “Set Up” again. Or, if you are needing 2 energies out of your discard pile, you could use “Super Connectivity” for 1 energy, scoop the Switch Magnezone with Seeker, put it back down with BTS, and Super Connectivity again. Or, if you absolutely needed 2 Metal or Lightning Pokémon, you could use Seeker to reuse Search Magnezone’s Poké-Power.

Switch and Lock.
Use the Switch Magnezone to attack and switch out with your Spiritomb each turn, thereby keeping the Trainer lock on your opponent. This is especially helpful against SP decks.

Shock.
Use Magnezone Lv.X’s Cyber Shock attack to damage and paralyze your opponent at key times in the game. This can help you stall while getting set up.

Snipe.
Use the Search Magnezone’s “Speed Shot” attack to Knock Out a damaged benched Pokémon or to start damaging your opponent’s benched Pokémon when they send up a sacrifice Pokémon.

Prepare to Reset.
Use the Search Magnezone to get your 4th Magnemite and Rare Candy or Magneton ready in case of when one of your Magnezone is knocked out. You can then use Palmer’s Contribution to grab the knocked out Lightning Magnezone and then use your Search Magnezone to completely reset the Knocked Out Magnezone from last turn!

Judge.
Judging your opponent’s hand can be very effective and can help you immensely when combined with Magnezone Prime’s draw power. This is also effective with Spiritomb to keep your opponent from resetting with Trainers.

Match-ups/Threats

SP Builds – Favorable.
With the Trainer lock on, this deck can do very well. However, you have to get your Spiritomb out quickly and start the set up. Seekers and Warp energy help out tremendously in this match-up to heal, and Magnezone Prime is helpful to deal out 110+ damage when needed. Be careful for Blaziken FB Lv.X as it can really hurt Metal Magnezone.

Gengar/Plume Lock – Favorable.
Both decks can set up about the same, but Magnezone has a much stronger ability to reset with Search Magnezone and Magnezone Prime’s draw power.

Gyarados – Even.
Both decks are very powerful, and the key to victory will be using your Lightning-type advantage.

Sablelock – Even.
It all comes down to the first few turns of the game. If you start with Spiritomb and they don’t start with Sableye, you will likely win. If they start with Sableye and you don’t start with Spiritomb, you will likely lose.

Other Stage 1/Stage 2 – Favorable.
As I stated near the beginning of the article, it is just hard to stop Magnezone once it sets up. If your opponent is also playing a setup deck with Stage 1s or Stage 2s, you will likely win the match as the draw/search/energy recovery abilities in the deck will simply overpower your opponent as the game progresses.

Conclusion

With the new Triumphant additions, Magnezone is now fully charged up and ready to take City Championships by storm. Don’t be shocked to see him hovering his way to the top and attracting a lot of attention.

//.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Martin-Garcia/676689170 Martin Garcia

    Now THIS is a nice magnezone list. I have almost no complaints, except a few little cards i would play differently, but i guess its a matter of preference.
    Have you ever tough of using just 1 uxie? since you have draw power in magnezone, maybe you can use that slot better. Also, how about palying 4BTS/ 3candy?
    I would also play 2 seeker(hunter) and 1 vs seeker, instead of play 3 seeker, just to give you a few more options.
    Im not sure about the match ups tough, some of them seem a bit off, specially the sp one, considering a lone spiritomb will not be enough to hold back luxchomp or even worst, dialgachomp, but i have never actually tested the other matchups, so i will have to take your word for it.
    Great job here Tony, definitly a good read.

  • http://www.google.com/profiles/wbeers coreycubed

    I like it. I’ve considered running one of each Magnezone like you’ve listed, but for the time being I’m sticking with 2 Lightning SF, one Prime and one Lv.X. I can usually find what I need with supporters and having another Gyro Baller ready to go is useful. I’ve got DCE for quick Gyro Ball setup and I use Judge pretty consistently too, so I’ve got four of those… other than that, you’ve managed to fit quite a lot into this deck. I need to double-check my deck list and see if I can work in any of these ideas. Thanks!

  • http://www.facebook.com/zlesage Zachary Lesage

    I liked the article, but it has even-favourable match-ups across the field…how is that even possible??? I honestly think they need to be re-evaluated, especially when you group “SP decks” into one category.

  • Anonymous

    really nice list, the only thing I might do
    is make room for DCE.

  • 2decktom

    Why do you have Regice?

  • 2decktom

    Why do you have Regice?

  • Anonymous

    I agree on all counts–outstanding description of how the deck works. But all Magnetons are 80 HP, just right for that early Dragon Rush. Makes me wonder whether the SP match isn’t just like Sablelock; if you can’t get Spiritomb up early, will getting Garchomped in the bench set you back for good?

  • Papa_Mash

    Good list. Some thoughts….

    Are two Warps enough to ensure you can utilize the Seekers? I usually run 3 in any deck to ensure that I can get them when needed. I can see the Regice being Bright Looked to active and having to “waste” Warps on it. Without Warps your Seekers will be less valuable from a healing standpoint if you can’t retreat the Zones (yes, you can always discard and use SuperConnectivity but discarding 3 or 4 energies to retreat one Zone could set you back awhile).

    Seems like adding Twins would benefit this deck immensely since it usually sacs at least one or two Tombs early (Black Belt is also an option but I am not a big BB fan).

    I have occasionally switched the Lux Ball for a Premier Ball in my decklist. I am on the fence as to which one I like better (I have not been keeping to the standard 1 Lux Ball per deck since Communication was released).

    With the Seekers it seems that you could drop to only one Palmer’s. I have been testing Rescue Energy in my decklist and it is really great if you have one on a Magnezone that you cannot Seeker (especially if you have BTS in play).

  • Anonymous

    u have 21 pokemon in the pokemon section but it says 20…u may want to recount it again.

  • http://www.facebook.com/platapierule Stephen Liao

    Nice article, but the arrogance displayed by your “even” and “favorable” match ups makes me want to puke.

  • Anonymous

    I love to play rouge decks. I like to prove to the Luxchomp and Dialgchomp ect… that rouge decks work and preform well.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Thanks! Though in my article, I’m not sure I’d call it a rouge deck. but certainly not something that should see wide play. Can’t wait to win (and lose) uniquely!

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Whoa! Be careful with the word arrogance. Maybe optimistic, but not arrogant. Honestly, I should have noted more why I felt that way in most matchups. Usually, type weakness is the #1 reason for bad matchups, so in this deck, fire and fighting matchups would normally be REALLY bad. However, the awesome thing is that you can change up your Magnezones in order to avoid weakness.

    With that said, I have done quite a bit of testing with Magnezone, and I’m still convinced it doesn’t have any bad matchups, unless someone comes up with a fighting/fire deck build. This is not saying that even matchups are easy- no way! I also should have noted in the article that Magnezone will typically get down 1-3 prizes before ready to go on offense, and this can be problematic.

    I should have also noted that this could be problematic in the current shorter match format. Since it comes down to who can take prizes the fastest, then Magnezone will struggle against SP and Sablelock. But, in just a pure 6 prize match with full time, I still think Magnezone can do great. Also, Magnezone will almost never donk, and other decks (Luxchomp and Sablelock) can do this consistently. And, if it comes down to the best 2 of 3 in a top cut, Magnezone can struggle as it lacks the early game speed of other decks.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    dang it- hate it when that happens! I’m an accountant and CPA , so don’t tell anyone ;). I’m still tweaking my deck list and probably missed that. I would probably pull a lightning energy or an uxie.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Awesome feedback! Here are my comments:

    Warp Energy- Good point. If Regice is played, then this makes a lot of sense. I also look at Switch Magnezone as kind of a built-in Warp Energy or Warp Point too. Obviously not exactly the same, but does get an injured Switch Magnezone back to the bench so you can Seeker your next turn.

    Twins. For whatever reason, I’m just not sold on Twins yet. I just picture it early game as dead weight in my hand and wishing it was another supporter that I could actually use. I may end up changing my mind though on this, especially since Magnezone will usually get down in prizes early game.

    Luxury Ball. Yeah, I’m on the the fence on this one too. I think communication or premier ball are great options too.

    Palmers. Interesting idea, especially if you play premier ball. The challenge I’m having is the choice between call energy and other specials like warp and rescue. I just feel really strongly that this deck’s biggest struggle/weakness is setup, especially with Sablelock roaming about, and a Spiritomb + Call Energy start is so helpful to counter the hand disruption. But, I do really like Rescue Energy and will give it some thought.

    thanks for the awesome feedback!

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Here is what is from the article:

    Regice.
    A way to force your opponent to switch Basics when needed and to discard unneeded cards or energy in order to maximize Magnezone Prime’s draw power and Search Magnezone’s energy recycling powers.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Thanks! I like DCE for both Magnezone’s attacks, but it’s hard to fit in so many special energies, and I really want call energy in my deck list. But, it’s a great option.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Hey- good feedback, and that’s a fair criticism. See my response to Stephen above.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Thanks for the feedback! Before Magnezone Prime came out, I definitely was running 2 switch magnezones. Honestly, I was convinced that Magnezone Prime was overhyped and not needed, but I drew one in a prerelease and just started testing it. It’s AWESOME! I don’t think it’s a good draw source for any non-Magnezone deck, but I’ve fallen in love with it (there’s that electromagnetism again…

    I also like your idea of 4 Judges and plan to change my list up to make room for that too. Just so helpful against SPs and other decks.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Thanks Martin! Here are some responses:

    1 Uxie. Hmmm…. certainly a possibility, but I like the consistency that 2 bring, and also that they can be really helpful in a Gengar matchup to KO Gengar without activating feinting spell. But, you are right- with Seeker, it certainly is an option.

    4 BTS/3 Candy. Honestly, this is gets down to one of the biggest decisions I’m trying to make with this deck- to candy or not to candy. I almost all other Stage 2 decks, I would say Rare Candy is absolutely critical. However, with 4 Spiritomb, 4 BTS, and a Search Magnezone, I’m just not so sure… Maybe I’ll try your idea and just run 1 less.

    Seeker/VS Seeker. Certainly a good option! I’m a little partial to 3 Seekers, but I think your idea would work too.

    Matchups. You’re the 3rd one to comment on this! See my earlier response on this, and I do need to expand this. The more I think about it, the more I think a LuxBlaze SP matchup could be an unfavorable matchup.

    Thanks for the feedback!

  • Papa_Mash

    I do not run any Call in my deck right now…maybe I should. But, for special energies, I run a combination of DCE, Rescue and Warp. For set up I run 4 Collectors. I know alot of players do not like to use that many because they perceive them as dead cards mid to late game (Regice should help with that). It is difficult to say because Call/Spiritomb is great if you open the game…primarily ensures you will not be donked…but if you go second (or if you open and are not donked), Collector/Spiritomb is the play. In your testing, is being donked a major problem?

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Great observation on the Dragon Rush, and that has definitely happened in play testing. My hope is to get spiritomb in play fast enough to perhaps slow the ability to Dragon Rush early game bu blocking energy gain, but it doesn’t always happen. You are right about the Sablelock comparison too- an early Garchomp Lv X or an early Luxray level X be very disruptive and possible screw up the Magnezone setup beyond recovery.

    As far as Umbreon is concerned, I really don’t have any concerns about that. It test play, I’ve been able to get around this by using Magneton to attack, or if I already have fully evolved Magnezones, I Seeker one of them and just evolve into Magneton and attack with it. But, you are right that an Umbreon will likely buy some time, but time is also on Magnezone’s side as more time = more energy in play = more Cyber Shocks and more Lost Burn attacks.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/ZETUB3TM3ZC4KJULZ4PYPEJR7I Tony

    Chenlock was rampant during Cities, so, at least in my area, you have to be ready for donk/lock decks.

    Also, I did want to share 1 very strong argument in favor of call energy over collector. That is, it can count towards the attack cost of your Magnezones, especially Magnezone Prime. In my play testing, if I am using Lost Burn, I feel bad placing metal, lightning or warp energies in the lost zone, but I never feel bad throwing a call energy in the lost zone. So, where collector is truly a dead card mid- to late-game, Call Energy can be great fuel for Lost Burn.

  • Rocket Prof

    if you’re behind in prizes often maybe consider twins…

  • Anonymous

    Nice articles, but the matchups seem off. You just sorta feel it when it is not unfavorable against any decks in the meta.

  • Anonymous

    Nice articles, but the matchups seem off. You just sorta feel it when it is not unfavorable against any decks in the meta.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=59102555 Stuart Martin Popagain

    i know that you like the lightning magnemite from SF, but have you considered the magnemite from Triumphant? it could be good in a pinch if you need it to be.