This Underground staff interview is with Mike Fouchet. Let’s get to it!
What is your favorite deck to play?
My favorite type of decks are spread decks. My favorite decks ever were ZRE (Zapdos ex/Rayquaza ex/Electrode ex) and Pow-Block (Tyranitar RR, Pow! Hand Extension, Electrode ex), which both revolved around Electrode ex. Coming from behind is always fun. I loved playing Regigigas for the same reason. I disliked playing almost every deck last format and this format doesn’t seem to be much more promising. I really enjoyed playing Gardevoir last year, and I think some form of hand-disruption will be a fun deck to play this format.
What’s your least favorite thing about the TCG?
Tough question. I don’t like that you can’t play supporters going first. I dislike the lack of good supporter draw in the previous few formats. I dislike the luck factor (to an extent). I dislike right now that it’s much harder to come back from losing and the speed of the formats has grown exponentially since the past. It adds a lot of pressure to build an extremely fast deck and take the first prize.
How many cards do you think you have?
Funny question, actually. If you asked me at the beginning of this past summer, I’d say something like 100,000, but I sold almost all of them. I’m probably down to somewhere around 2,500-5,000.
What do you like to do when you’re not playing Pokémon?
I’m a full-time student at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA (sophomore this year) so that takes a lot of my time. Here I’m in a fraternity, play club soccer, have a job, and do a bunch of other things. I watch a decent amount of movies and TV shows and have an active social life.
How much do you typically play test before a tournament?
Depends on the tournament and how comfortable I feel before playtesting. Examples: I playtested probably hundreds of hours prior to Nationals/Worlds ’08, but much less for Nationals this past year, because I already knew how to play Gardevoir well. Smaller tournaments often warrant less playtesting as well. I hardly playtested for States/Regionals this year as a result of having a lot of schoolwork as well as not caring as much. Cities actually require just as much, if not more, playtesting compared to States/Regionals though, in my opinion.
What modified format was your favorite to play in?
Definitely the 05-06 season. Most top players regard it as one of, if not the best, Modified format in the history of the game. A lot of playable, fun decks, with a lot of recovery. As I mentioned, Pow-Block was one of my favorite decks and I ran it for Worlds 06 and T32ed, only losing on a coin flip in Game 3 of Top 32 vs LBS. The inclusion of Delta Pokémon (Raichu/Eggs and Metanite namely) also shook up the format after Nationals. There was still secret decks that year as well, adding a lot of variety and flavor to the format.
Do you play unlimited?
I’ve played a handful of Unlimited games in the past couple years, but never anything significant. It’s kind of pointless in my opinion and there are only a few actually good decks, but it is fun to imagine some of the combos you can pull off.
Do you think that Pokémon is more skill or luck based?
Skill based, but obviously there is a lot of luck. A lot of people that ask me how the game goes know about Magic, and so I often compare it to that: I feel there is more luck than Magic but ALSO more skill. It’s interesting.
In 2 years, do you still plan to be playing the Pokémon TCG?
I can’t see myself NOT playing. I’ll probably be playing this game as long as I still have good friends that play it. At this point they are the main reason I keep playing.
Feel free to leave more questions for Mike in the comments section below.