Rotation is looming. That means there are a lot of sets and amazing cards we are going to lose, so now is the ideal time to play them while you can.
This list is based around Tyranitar. This deck won me around 51 of 59 league night tournaments I used it in. With the increased use of the Pokémon SP and healing Pokémon this deck has become less viable although it can still be great to play if your metagame allows it.
4 Sableye SF
2 Baltoy GE
2 Claydol GE
2 Sneasel DP
2 Weavile SW
3 Larvitar SF
2 Pupitar SF
3 Tyranitar SF
1 Omastar MD
2 Pokémon Collector
3 Bebe’s Search
4 Poké Healer +
4 Felicity’s Drawing
1 Fossil Excavator
4 Rare Candy
1 Luxury Ball
1 Helix Fossil
2 Moonlight Stadium
1 Night Maintenance
4 Darkness (Special)
10 Dark (Basic)
When played to the plan, this deck has 3 stages of play. The Setup, The Spread and The End.
Sableye is the perfect starting Pokémon. He has a unique Poké-Body “Overeager” which, if you play him as your active Pokémon at the start of the game, forces you to go first.
This allows you to possibly go for a donk and win without even letting your opponent have a turn! His attack “Overconfident” does 10 damage for D, but if your opponents Pokémon has less HP than Sableye it does 40 damage instead. This means if you have a Special Dark in your hand you can Knock Out any Pokémon with 50 or less HP, getting the win if that’s your opponent’s sole Pokémon.
However it’s likely that either your opponent will have more than 1 Pokémon or you won’t have a Sableye AND a Special Dark in your starting hand. Therefore you can use his first attack “Impersonate” for 0 Energy. This allows you to get around the disadvantages of not being able to play any Trainers when you go first. This attack will allow you to search your deck for a Supporter, discard it, then use the effects of that Supporter as the effects of that attack. This allows you to begin setting up the rest of your deck from the beginning.
Again this lovely Pokémon will sit on your bench and hopefully help you draw something useful.
This Weavile has 3 distinct uses: the primary use of this Weavile is to charge up your Tyranitar. As it uses 5 energy to attack its going to need some help. For 0 Energy Weavile can “Shadow Charge” to search your deck for any 2 Dark Energy cards. Meaning you can grab those vital Special Darks and put them straight on your Tyranitar, and when you’re done, it even comes with free retreat to put your built up Tyranitar straight in.
Weaviles second attack “Chip Off” for DD can be useful in some circumstantial situations. It hits for 40 damage, and if your opponent has 6 or more cards in his hand you can pick some out at random until they only have 5 left. This can be useful if your opponent has a large hand. For example in an SP deck or with Shuppet Donk. It feels so good when you discard your opponents Shuppet, Expert Belt and all 4 Plus Powers!
Weavile also has a brilliant Poké-Power, “Dark Engage”. This allows you to turn your active Pokémon’s type to Darkness just until the end of your turn. When combined with Moonlight Stadium (provides free retreat to Psychic and Dark Pokémon) it will allow you to give any of your Pokémon a free retreat which helps with anything that your opponent has forced you to play active. Nothing is more annoying than having Claydol stuck active, and this allows you to get out of that situation. Alternatively you can turn your active Tyranitar “Super Duper Dark”. If your opponent wasn’t scared before, he will be once you’ve announced that!
Many people prefer the new Unleashed Pupitar, with “Rage” which does 20+ 10 more damage for each damage counter on it. Useful with a Tyranitar which has Memory Berry attached. People also prefer it for it’s “Boost Gas” Poké-Body. While it has energy attached it has free Retreat Cost. However with Dark Engage and Moonlight Stadium, this is rather obselete.
Therefore I use the SF Pupitar which has the Poké-Body “Energy Protection” which reduces damage done to it by 10 for each energy attached to it up to a maximum of 30. This means that while 3 energy are attached to it, nothing can snipe it. Even a Blastoise (UL) will only bash it for 70, and Garchomp C LV.X cannot kill it in 1 hit either.
Roar! Big scary Tyranitar. This is my favorite spread Pokémon. For DDDDD Spinning Tail does 30 damage to each of your opponents Pokémon. If you’ve been using Weavile to charge up your Tyranitar with some Special Darks you can be hitting your opponents active Pokémon for up to 70 damage while still hitting the bench for 30 each. Most Pokémon won’t survive 2 hits of 70, and their bench will be heavily damaged putting your opponent in an awkward position.
If your opponent has something nasty put into the active slot then you have another option to get it out of your way as soon as possible. Tyranitar’s first attack “Grind” for CC does 20 damage times the number of energy attached. Again if you’ve got Special Darks attached from your Weavile you can hit for up to 140 for 5 energy, killing most things.
But that’s not all this big beast can do! To help with that HUGE Energy requirement it has a unique Poké-Body. Every time your opponent uses a Poké-Power you may use “Darkness Drive”. So every time your opponent uses “Cosmic Power”, “Setup”, “Trade Off” or that annoying Fainting Spell on Gengar you can grab a Basic Dark Energy from your discard pile and attach it to Tyranitar immediately. This means if you’ve got a load of Energy dumped in the discard pile, if your opponent isn’t careful you can easily be attaching 2 or 3 Energy to your Tyranitars before your turn has even begun! This helps you setup your second or third Tyranitar.
You may have sacrificed 2-4 Pokémon to get your Tyranitar out and not drawn any prizes yourself, but if you can pull off that big Spinning Tail attack 2-3 times in a row then you can let your opponent in for a nasty shock.
The card your opponent NEVER wants to see. Save your Helix Fossil, Rare Candy and Omastar in your hand until it really counts and to give your opponent no prior warning to prepare for the assault. If you’ve pulled off 2-3 Spinning Tails so your opponents bench is on 60-90 damage then throw down your Fossil and Rare Candy it immediately to that scary Water Snail thing that is Omastar.
Omastar has a brilliant Poké-Power that helps in all spread decks. When you play Omastar from your hand you may use his “Primal Swirl” to remove the highest stage evolution card from EACH of your opponents benched Pokémon and return them to his hand! With 60-90 damage on what are now your opponents Basic or Stage 1 Pokémon this is often enough damage to instantly kill off your entire opponents bench! Scooping you an amazing 5 Prize cards and you won’t even have attacked. Allowing you to finish off with Grind to take that last card.
The important thing with this card is to keep it in your hand to surprise your opponent. Don’t give them any chance to prepare for it as they’ll start trying to heal their Pokémon like crazy or Super Scoop them all up!
This allows you to get 3 basics from your deck and put them in your hand. A pretty staple card however this deck is unusual in that it only runs 2. Using Sableye’s Impersonate you will always be able to get one when you need it so you don’t need to play as many.
This is the main Trainer that will search for your evolutions. Again usable with the Sableye’s Impersonate attack.
Tyranitar has a whopping 140 HP! This means that not many Pokémon will kill it in 1 hit. Poké Healer+ is a card that I’ve never known anyone else to play. When your Tyranitar is close to death and your opponent thinks he has got the upper hand, take it right back by playing 2-of these and removing 80 damage! This will let you survive a bit longer to pull off those crucial Spinning Tails.
If your opponent is playing a deck you know relies heavily on Poké-Powers (most decks recently) you may want to use some of these during your turn instead of using Bebe’s to get your Pokémon out. Use this to draw 3-4 cards by discarding 1-2 cards from your hand. You can use this to discard your Basic Energy ready to attach with Darkness Drive accelerating your energy attachment.
Many people disagree with running one of these but the added consistency it gives to your Omastar is undeniable. As long as you have 1 half of the Omastar or Helix Fossil and a Rare Candy you can always put your Sableye back in to Impersonate the Excavator to get the other half you need ready for next turn.
Quite often you will find yourself playing 2-3 Prize cards behind your opponent. If you’re struggling under the pressure and think this is a lead you’re not going to be able to pull back even with Spinning Tail; drop your Omastar early! Devolve their entire bench (preferably fully setup) then drop a Judge and have them entire all of those evolutions along with the rest of their hand back into their deck. See if they can setup their entire bench again after that!
Free Retreat for all of your Pokémon while Weavile is on your field. Can help a great deal with Tyranitar having a Retreat Cost of 4.
So is this deck still competitive? It was in the past but probably isn’t anymore.
Is it a fun deck to play? Of course! The immense pressure this deck puts your opponent under will force even some of the best players to misplay!
Give it a go and see what you think!