pokebeach.comHi there. My name is Travis and I am a huge Charizard fan. When I first saw the Charizard from Arceus and read his Poké-Body “Fire Formation,” I quickly figured he could do 80 base damage (100 with a Belt) for one energy, easily making him one of the best Charizards ever printed. With power like this for only one Fire Energy, and 140 HP, Charizard is no force to ignore. The Charizard builds I’ve been working with have proven to be powerful and consistant in both league and tournament play.
Before I reveal the decklist (slightly modified), I just want to say that I have considered a lot of input from other Charizard useres. Different players choose a different selection of fire type Pokémon to add to the bench. Some Pokémon that other players choose are not even fire type, which works for some people. I’ve seen, played, and analyzed many other Charizard decks, and I offten find the same problem: The player can get a Charizard out, but they focus only on the Charizard, completely ignoring the potential of their bench.
That’s not to say that no other player has thought of these strategies I will describe, but I feel I have found the perfect blend, and balance of fire type Pokémon to keep on the bench. I have play tested everything from Uxies and Azelfs, to Blaziken FB and Heartan LV.X, and I’ve found the following combination of Pokémon to be the most benificial to Charizard. Here’s the list:
|Pokémon: 22||T/S/S: 23||
Energy : 15
Now because this deck is comprised entirely fire type Pokémon, there is no need to waste a turn to getting that Uxie under the deck to make room for a fire type guy to give Charizard that extra 10 damage he needs for the KO. Each card has synergy with all other cards in the deck and if used right, you’ll be able to play anyone and get 3 Fire Energy onto them in one turn. It’s basically built to get a full bench of really useful Pokémon. After that, they’ll pretty much take care of themselves. Now onto the individual Pokémon…
pokebeach.comVulpix: I have two of the shiny ones from Platinum that allow me to search for Fire Energy with “Find Wildfire” that everyone knows and suggests. I also have one that allows me to discard up to 2 Fire Energy from my hand and draw 2 cards per card I discarded. It’s from the same set and the attack is also free. I always hope to get a Vulpix in my starting hand because they’re just so helpful in pulling cards from your deck early game for no energy cost. They also set you up for a…
Ninetales: This is the deck’s standard draw engine. Besides that, Ninetales is also great for its “Will-o-the-Wisp” attack in a pinch. Ninetales also has a life saving Retreat Cost of one for when you started with a Vulpix and had to keep Ninetales up there an extra turn. In adition, Ninetales puts your energy exactly where you want it: In the discard. You always want a good amount of energy in your discard so you can use Fisherman to fill your hand with Fire Energy or let the next guy take care of it…
Typhlosion: When players think of this card, they offten see him as nothing more than a way to get energy up, but I also want to point out his attack “Flare Destroy”. While not the most impressive move, it does do a nice 70 damage. I’ve used it for multiple KOs when situations call for it, and it’s even won me a game or two. I have tried to run this deck without Typhlosion, only to find that I can almost never use Charizard’s second attack before Charizard is Knocked Out. Therefore I find him very necesarry and chose to keep a moderate line of him in the deck.
Typhlosion’s Poké-Power “Afterburner” has the downside of putting a damage counter on the Pokémon you want to attach the Fire Energy to. Most of the time it’s not a big deal, but in case it is, combo it with the next card…
pokebeach.comStark Mountain: Use Afterburner to pull a Fire Energy from the discard to Typhlosion, or another Pokémon that can take a damage counter. Then use Stark Mountain to move the Fire Energy to another Pokémon, thus removing the problem of having to put the damage counter on the Pokémon you wanted to attach the Energy to in the first place. I call this method “Typho-Stark” (So I don’t have to explain that entire process to my opponent after the first time.)
Play one Fire Energy from your hand onto Charizard, use Stark Mountain to pull one Fire Energy from the bench onto Charizard, and then use Afterburner to put the third Fire Energy onto Charizard. Using this method you can have a Charizard out with three Energy, using Burning Tail and destroying everything with a max base damage of 130 (150 with a Belt). Speaking of Charizard…
Charizard: He seems simple enough. Get him out and attack. But I feel more needs to be said about how to play him. His first attack, “Fire Wing”, obviously performs best with a full bench, but sometimes all you really need to do is 60 or 70 damage. An important skill to have when playing this deck is to be aware of how much damage you are doing with your attack, and if you have enough to 1HKO the opponents active.
Also you need to know when it’s worth it to belt the Charizard (I lost a tournament match once because I had forgot that Charizard could hit for 100 and KO a Kyogre.) Late game, most Pokémon will take a Burning Tail attack to take down, but never forget to look for Pokémon with HP 100 or lower. You can use Stark Mountain to move an extra Energy off Charizard if he’s about to be KO’d and still draw a prize that turn. If you can’t KO the opponent’s active with Fire Wing, look at their bench. If all of them have 100 HP or lower maybe you can use…
Infernape 4 LV.X: I remember the first time I put this guy in my deck and realized just how insanely good he is. Not only have I used all of his attacks in a pinch when I was out of Charizards, but his Poké-Power “Intimidating Roar” is just too good. I get him out by choosing Infernape 4 to be sent up when my opponent knocks the active out. Then I level him up and FREE RETREAT him back to continue sniping benched Pokémon. Sorry for the caps, I just can’t stress how awesome it is to not have to waste a Fire Energy to retreat him.
Yet another reason he is an awesome choice for a Charizard deck. Your opponent will have a hard time walling unless they want to have multiple walls on the bench at once, taking up valuble bench space. I’ve used the Poké-Power against Spiritombs, Mr. Mimes, and the dreaded Umbreon with “Moonlight Fang”.
I’ve found the most effective way to use his power is this: If at all possible, use Intimidating Roar at the beginning of your turn, so your opponent doesn’t think much of it, and sends a low HP Pokémon up, or my favorite, their main attacker (works especially well after your opponent just KO’d a Charizard). Then drop a Charizard down and Knock it Out and completely mess them up.
After going through all the strategy of this deck, I feel I need to say one more thing about this deck and that is the setup. Here’s how I like my side to look at all times:
Two Charizards (at least 1, with the other being a Charmander that can easily be evolved the next turn or so via Rare Candy or Broken Time-Space), one Infernape 4 LV.X, two Ninetales, and one Typhlosion. You have enough of everyone that way to do what they’re supposed to do. (Three Ninetales works if you consistently have a way to drop a Charizard quickly)
That is my deck that I have been developing and will continue to develop as long as this Charizard remains in rotation. Let me know what you think, and feel free to use it and spread some Charizard out there!