Gengar Stormfront SF 18 – Card of the Day

Gengar had a lot of hype up until the release of the Stormfront Pokémon TCG set. Taken at face value Gengar looks like the most amazing Pokémon card ever. Gengar can KO a Pokémon with the flip of a coin after getting KO’d himself using the Pokémon Power “Fainting Spell”. Shadow Room can do a very efficient 60 damage for 1 energy. Poltergeist can do a whole lot of damage if the opponent has a lot of trainers in hand.

But as time went on people began to figure out ways to play around Gengar’s attacks and Pokémon Power. Fainting Spell only works if Gengar is Knocked Out by damage from an opponent’s attack. Most people use Unown G to prevent Special Conditions on Gengar, but Unown G does not prevent Poison from Skuntank. Some more popular ways to KO Gengar without risking the Fainting Spell flip are playing a Crobat G to the bench to use its Flash Bite Pokémon Power for that final 10 damage, and Uxie LA’s Psychic Restore since Uxie goes to the bottom of the deck before having a chance to get Knocked Out. Or… just avoid messing with Gengar at all! Use a sniping attack to KO Pokémon on the opponent’s bench, or use Luxray GL LV.X’s Bright Look to bring up a non-Gengar for the KO.

There’s a simple way to shutdown Gengar’s Shadow Room attack. Unown G. That card prevents all effects of attacks, excluding damage, meaning Shadow Room does nothing. Your Pokémon with Powers should receive first priority for Unown G, since Shadow Room would do an extra 30 to them.

Now for Poltergeist. If you have a Claydol GE in play, just put 2 Trainers at the bottom of your deck, and try to get rid of any other trainers you may have. This way Poltergeist’s damage can get reduced to 0.

Combine all of these things together and Gengar may have a tough time doing any damage at all! However, there are a couple options to help it out:

  • Nidoqueen RR – With Nidoqueen in play, an opponent will have a hard time doing the final 20 damage from Psychic Restore to KO a Gengar without risking the Fainting Spell flip. You can keep retreating back and forth between different Gengars, rotating them, to let them all heal the damage off.
  • Shuppet PL + 4 PlusPowers – Each turn attach 4 PlusPowers to Shuppet, Fade Out for 70 damage, and put Gengar back in the Active Spot. That gives Gengar the Fainting Spell advantage while still doing decent damage.

I’m still not a fan of Gengar. It may have won the Seniors Division at USA Nationals 2009, but it only got as high as top 8 in Masters. Let us know what you think of Gengar by commenting below!

Reader Interactions

21 replies

  1. Mike Qua

    I haven’t found a solution against Gengar yet. I currently run one myself, but it only really sucks against mirrors.

    Running a Nidoqueen with it makes it EXTREMELY hard to kill and lucky flips are the worst! With free retreat, poison won’t do too much damage, I mean, I think maybe Blaztran might work well against it.

    • Adam Capriola  → Mike

      Thanks for the comments man. :) Nidoqueen does make it much more troublesome to avoid “Fainting Spell”. Your best bet is to drop multi Crobat G’s in one turn (with the aid of Poke Turn) and to use Uxie LA (w/ PlusPowers if you have them).

      • Mike Qua  → Adam

        I agree…but also, wouldn’t that also mean you put multiple Turns in the deck…which basically seems to me you’re centering the deck around Crobat instead of Gengar.

  2. Adam Capriola

    Thanks for all these comment Qua, it’s awesome to get some good discussion going. :) If you are playing an SP deck, you’ll be playing 4 Poke Turn anyway, so if you can just get Gengar to 60 damage, you would only need to drop Crobat, Poke Turn it, drop it again, then attack with Uxie and that’s 40 damage right there. That isn’t too hard to accomplish.

  3. Brian Jessing

    Gengar takes a big hit next set, but for now, I find that simply rushing it, warping out benched guys for the easy prizes, and key hits followed by uxie/crobat drops, usually can handle gengar/queen.

    • Mike Qua  → Brian

      What is the “big hit” you’re talking about? I sadly haven’t been keeping up with the next set

  4. bendingspoons1

    brian what do you mean “big hit” next set, does this mean that it get’s a lot worse than it already is?

    • Mike Qua  → bendingspoons1

      “a lot worse than it already is”

      bendingspoons1, I’m a little confused with your comment, I mean, Gengar is pretty popular and is in the top 3 in all the tourneys around my area at least. It’s considered a tier 1 deck. I wouldn’t say that it’s a BAD card per se. And with Gengar lv.x coming it MIGHT get better…

  5. alex d


    I don’t think Gengar is good, personally.

    People tend to overemphasize how bad Fainting Spell is. Usually, in a deck that has little energy cost, I just go for it and take the risk. People work too hard to play around Fainting Spell, and in the end the playing around it puts them in a worse position than if they had just gone for it.

  6. Stigma

    I agree with Yoyo. I think the key to beating gengar is to kill it with very low energy attackers instead of running away. DPL Has a very easy time doing this, as gengars will be softened up with pearl breath and can be killed by luxray or uxie, if you even have to kill a gengar at all.
    Raype also has this advantage over it – although, that matchup is something like 55-45 in gengar’s favor, in my testing.
    I got the farthest of all the raype players in the SR division – To defeat a good gengar, an early claydol kill is extreeeeemely crucial, while STILL managing your powers, trainers, getting claydol out, etc. This proves to be VERY hard to pull off if gengar has a good start, sadly.

  7. Adam Capriola

    Nice analysis Stigma! How far did you get at Nationals?

  8. Stigma

    I made it to top 16. Gengar just has too many weapons on its side for Raype to handle, really. Gengar also tends to be able to get 2 claydols out if they try hard enough…which they obviously should. In my testing, if gengar manages to get both claydols out, it’s going to be a loss. :\

  9. vitor2097

    and now gengar is the card of the day of my favorite site of tcg…

    • Mike Qua  → vitor2097

      Hey, not to be rude, but just to let you know, try not to post multiple times in a row. You can always hit the edit button :)

  10. Cesar

    Gengar will be KO’d in hay decks. it’s good when its a supporter to a main poke

  11. Bob

    I run Mewtwo and Mewtwo Lv.X with Gengar and Nidoqueen. The Magestic Dawn one, anyway. It adds the 60 damage, 120 damage, and no damage from basics. It works really well, especially agenst SP decks and when Gengar fails. I also run it with Spiritomb from Arceus set to get set up really fast. No need for Claydols. and as an added bonus, if Nidoqueen comes out, he takes one, heals one, so no damage done. Gengar is worth the hype, and with Gengar Lv. X, it is nasty. If skuntank G is in your way, take it out with shadow room. or, bring out Mewtwo lv.X and do some major damage. Force it out and DESTROY it!

    Gengar won worlds and will always be AWESOME!!!

    • Randy Branch  → Bob

      Claydol is needed in Gengar. It doesn’t matter how many Spiritomb you have (which does slow you down a little bit by the way). If you don’t have Claydol, you can wait for League Claydol soon. Gengar did not win worlds and was a pretty bad deck in the DP-RR Master division. Unown G protects Skuntank G and you can’t force it out (unless you play Poke Blower +).

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