Hello SixPrizes community, I am here with my 2nd article and I hope this article will definitely help out a lot of players for the upcoming City Championships events. My article will be a total of four separate in-depth articles on the four top decks after the release of Triumphant. Well, I should probably stop with this pre-article banter so… on to the article!
pokemon-paradijs.comPart 1/4 – LuxChomp MD On
If you are surprised to still see this deck doing well, don’t be. LuxChomp has been one of the best decks in the format for the past year or so and I don’t see that changing at all for Cities. You might be asking, what does LuxChomp gain from Triumphant? I say it gains very little, but it does gain the popularity of Gyarados being Tier 1.
This is how a metagame works, some decks are better than others for lots of reasons (weakness, locking, speed, etc.) and I can easily say that LuxChomp has an edge over Gyarados. LuxChomp also has a “small” edge over DialgaChomp and does well over most of the format. This is why I consider it the 2nd best deck in the format right now.
Here are my top 4 decks in the format ATM:
1st) DialgaChomp (article 4/4)
2nd) LuxChomp (article 1/4)
3rd) Gyarados (article 2/4)
4th) Machamp (article 3/4)
If you are worried about any decks in the format, odds are they are on my list and because of their popularity, you WILL see them at your Cities this season. The LuxChomp list I will be providing will have enough deck space to allow answers for each of them.
Base LuxChomp List:
|Pokémon – 13||T/S/S – 19||Energy – 9|
Wow, that is 19 spaces to work with, we should be able to EASILY bang out an anti-metagame list. I will list off a bunch of techs that can counter the other top decks or add constancy. It is YOUR job to build a consistent deck that works for you.
When deciding techs, you have to first know your deck’s goal, LuxChomp’s is to draw 6 Prizes very fast! It counters a large portion of the metagame and Knocks Out many Pokémon easily, making it an extremely powerful force. You generally would like to start by either getting a donk in some form but, if you can’t, try to use your Call Energy to set-up.
When you use Call Energy, the Pokémon you choose will change depending on which deck you are facing, what techs you play, and what is in your hand. After the initial Call or first few turns, you want to plan out many moves to counter your opponent, Knock Out key Pokémon, and basically try to spoil their plans that they want to use against you. LuxChomp can be a very hard deck to master but, if you do master it, nothing can really stop you. Either way, onto the techs/counters section…
Gyarados has gained quite a bit from Triumphant and that is why it is viable for Cities this season. It has gained Rescue Energy and Junk Arms, which is enough for a lot of players to think of it as a viable deck.
Gyarados is weak to Lightning, but Luxray would be hitting it for 100 at Max with Trash Bolt. That is where Lucario GL come in. Lucario GL makes that Lightning + 30 Weakness into Lightning x2 Weakness, putting Gyarados into an easy 1HKO range. With Gyarados in an easy 1HKO range, LuxChomp dominates the deck especially once the Gyarados player drops an Expert Belt and you respond with Trash Bolt + Crobat G for 150. This is one of your strongest choices.
1 Roserade GL
Roserade GL is one of the more interesting techs to counter Gyarados, but it is highly effective through testing. It allows you to hit Sableye for 10 + Poison and they can’t retreat; This means the Sableye is at 20 after the initial “Poison Bind”, 30 at the end of their turn, 50 at the end of your next turn with another “Poison Bind”, and at 60 at the end of their next turn. The reason why this is good is because you can attach an Energy Gain to use that attack while you power up your bench.
1 Purugly G
Purugly G is good for one thing, discarding cards from your opponent’s hand! Gyarados decks are known for having huge hands and Purugly G could very easily discard 5-10 cards, something that is always helpful.
*Side Note: With a single Energy Gain, you can use BlackBelt + Purugly G to do a whopping 120 damage on a Dragonite FB or Garchomp C LV.X! This allows you to do a rebound KO essentially for free, use an extremely important Energy on a different Pokémon, and take control of an otherwise hard match.
I decided to add these cards into one category because they are essentially doing the same thing, shuffling a huge hand away for a small one. These cards can hurt most decks, but Gyarados needs to recover ASAP after a KO. These cards can stop that from happening.
Judge might be a tad extreme considering you don’t get the advantage of seeing their hand like Looker’s, but it does give them one less card. Looker’s is great because you can see if they have a dead hand or not, but it gives them one extra card. No matter which one you choose, they should do some damage to a Gyarados deck.
* Side Note: You can play around an opponent’s Smeargle with a single Judge/Looker’s in your hand to put them in a potentially horrible board position. You can also utilize single lines of Supporter’s with a Staraptor FB LV.X.
LuxChomp has always been a threat since it’s release and even though you are running it yourself, you might as well have some cards in your deck to beat it. There are many ways to do this through skill, but having some very powerful counters are definitely key in winning the mirror as well. Here are some of my favorites:
Almost every SP player knows that, when you play a deck that has Garchomp C in it versus another deck with Garchomp C in it, you need to preserve your resources while taking out their Garchomp C’s as well as any cards that are immediate threats to your own Garchomp C’s. The match is usually awarded to the player who can consistently rebound off of an important KOs. This is where Dragonite FB or Ambipom G come in.
Dragonite FB has been gaining a lot of popularity lately and it deserves to, it is a fantastic SP counter in general. Most Pokémon SP have 80 HP and Dragonite FB does 80 for just a DCE + Energy Gain. Dragonite FB can also do 160 to your opponent’s Dragonite FB or Garchomp C LV.X, this is what makes it so important.
I personally play Dragonite FB in my SP decks because I play in an area where SP decks reign supreme but, it is completely up to you. You should have some knowledge of what you think your opponent will play and you need to know that before deciding in between techs. If you don’t know if your metagame is full of SP decks, you should run Ambipom G…
Ambipom G is fantastic but, it has been a card that the better SP players have learned how to play around and I think that is one of the reasons why it is played less lately. Ambipom G is still great though, giving you the chance to win on the 1st turn easily (if your opponent’s Pokémon has 60 HP or less) and it counters a Garchomp C LV.X after a snipe (no energies = 60×2 to do 120). No matter which card you like better (Ambipom G or Dragonite FB), you should always try to pick one because they are very key in a mirror match.
1 Toxicroak G (Promo) & 1 Basic P Energy
Toxicroak G is a Luxray GL LV.X counter and it counters it well. For just a P Energy and an Energy Gain, you can 1HKO Luxray GL LV.X if your opponent KO’d one of your Pokémon last turn from damage. Also, since you play Luxray GL LV.X yourself, you can easily use Bright Look, retreat into your Toxicroak G and 1HKO one of their other Pokémon that they weren’t expecting to get KO’d. Toxicroak G also has a Poké-Power “Leap Away” which gives you a 50% chance to bring it back to your hand, how great is that?
*Side Note: Leap Away can be used with Garchomp C LV.X after a “Dragon Rush” snipe for a 50% chance of NOT wasting a valuable Poké Turn. Even if you don’t get a Heads, you can always Poké Turn and do Dragon Rush again.
You may be asking, how does Smeargle counter a complete deck? Well, it doesn’t exactly counter LuxChomp or any deck, but it does give you the advantage of using multiple Cyrus’ Conspiracy and that is something that shouldn’t be overlooked. You can also copy other supporters and take the lead in a game, something that can be very good. I don’t know why people don’t play this card? Two supporters is almost always better than one…PERIOD!
*Side Note: If you are in a really bad position, you can use “Tail Rap” versus a Garchomp C to do a potential 80 Damage! It may not be the most effective use of a DCE but, it is still another option added to the deck by playing Smeargle.
Staraptor FB LV.X is absolutely fantastic because it is draw power in a format with very little. I like the ability to run slim lines of Supporters like Twins, BlackBelt, CopyCat, etc. and grab whichever one I need at any time during the game. Also, “Fast Call” is just the icing on the cake, “Defog” is a crazy attack!
With a Stadium in play, you can hit a random Pokémon for 70 (Uxie and Azelf anyone?) or hit a Garchomp C LV.X/Dragonite FB for 140 damage!!! Staraptor FB LV.X will also bait out a Luxray GL LV.X in which you can respond with a Toxicroak G rebound KO. Oh, and by playing this card, you play Stadiums and those are also very good counters to cards like Broken-Time Space among some other stadiums that might see play.
*Side Note: Pokémon Contest Hall can also be that great little trick that helps you in a situation when you need an Energy Gain and a Poké Turn from Cyrus, but can only choose one. It also allows you to play Skuntank G which then allow you to play Toxicroak G to counter Machamp . This card is just full of possibilities!
1-1 Uxie LV.X (LA)
Uxie LV.X is a great card in general and can be used versus LuxChomp to counter their Toxicroak G, Uxie LV.X, and/or a bunch of weaker Basic Pokémon (Uxie, Azelf, Smeargle, Chatot, etc.). Uxie LV.X also has “Trade Off”, which is draw power, making it a fantastic Poké-Power to have this format. Not to much to speak about here, but my rule for deck building nowadays is either Uxie LV.X or Staraptor FB LV.X, usually not both.
1/2 Energy Exchanger
This card is truly special, it allows you to get out DCE faster and that is very key to winning vs LuxChomp! You may remember what I said before about Garchomp C & counters vs Garchomp C & counters, but how do you power them up? DCE is the answer and any card that searches DCE out is fantastic in my book.
Well, DialgaChomp is the best deck in the format right now and you should have some answers for it! The thing is, if you have already teched your deck vs LuxChomp, odds are you will already have enough techs to combat a DialgaChomp deck too. DialgaChomp isn’t too different from LuxChomp and LuxChomp vs LuxChomp/DialgaChomp is essentially the same matchup. For the sake of it, I will list the LuxChomp techs here again:
1 Smeargle (UD)
(See LuxChomp counters)
Staraptor FB LV.X is very good in this matchup because any DialgaChomp really won’t be able to 1HKO it back easily whereas you can KO many of their Pokémon easily!
1-1 Uxie LV.X (LA)
(See LuxChomp Counters)
1/2- Energy Exchanger (UD)
(See LuxChomp Counters)
(insert a Pic of Blaziken FB LV.X)
I figured I would mention this card only because some DialgaChomp players use Dialga G LV.X as their only attacker. Blaziken FB LV.X is good at 1HKOing Dialga G LV.X and a few other 80 HP Pokémon, but I think there are plenty of other choices.
I would only really play this card if your metagame had a lot of Grass decks, Steelix Prime decks, Scizor Prime Decks, Kingdra Prime decks, the odd GenPlume, and quite a bit of DialgaChomp. If your metagame is like that, I would definitely play Blazekin FB LV.X, but I am sure it is very unlikely. Either way, Blazekin FB LV.X is an overall decent tech in LuxChomp.
Machamp Prime has just come out and what is better to run with it than the SP donking master, Machamp SF. Some say Machamp Prime makes traditional Machamp builds Tier 1 but, I am not completely sure, I might say Tier 1.25 or Tier 1.5, but I decided to add a Machamp section in my article to help you guys out more.
Toxicroak G has always been a nice Machamp counter and nothing will really change that fact. You hit Machamp for Weakness and they can’t 1HKO you back usually, why not play Toxicroak G if you are worried about Machamp? If you’re already teching a Lucario GL (RR) in your deck, you can 1HKO a Machamp and if you have Stadiums & Skuntank G in your deck, Toxicroak G is easily splashable!
1 Cyrus’ Initiative
This is an interesting card but, I will state now, it is a lot better if you play Staraptor FB LV.X! This will allow you to possibly take 1-2 cards from their hand and put them under their deck so that they won’t be able to use them. The cards you choose will vary at times but, hitting their single F Energy or Professor Oak’s New Theory might hurt them more than you think.
*Side Note: This card can also be used versus an SP deck to stop a Cyrus’s Conspiracy chain early-mid game.
1/2/3 TGI Power Spray
Machamp is a deck that revolves around getting using “Set Up” early, but if you Spray an early Uxie or other important Poké-Power, you can take control of the game early. Power Spray is overall a strong card to play, but I often find myself playing low numbers of it lately because it kinda makes for a dead-draw when you need something else.
Overall Good Cards:
Well, now you know some of the best cards to tech your deck with, here is a list of a few others that should be good in LuxChomp.
Dialga shuts off annoying Poké-Bodies and is a Mewtwo LV.X counter, which is why it is a solid play in LuxChomp. This card is also good because it can use “Deafen” to lock your opponent for a few turns. It can also use “Second Strike” or “Remove Lost” for a decent amount of damage.
This card has been a solid hand shuffler since it’s release and I don’t think that has ever changed. It is still good until this day, but Smeargle seems like the superior choice at the moment. It also has “Chatter”, which can completely stop a Sableye or Spiritomb for a whole game. If you don’t like Smeargle, you might like Chatot, so give it a shot.
1 CopyCat /Professor Oak’s New Theory
It seems like almost every deck needs some sort of Hand-shuffler now and these two are the best we have. I personally use CopyCat over PONT because it usually nets me more cards (7-9 is regular), but PONT is a solid choice too. You could play Looker’s Investigation over these because it is a hand-shuffler, too. It also gives you another edge vs Gyarados.
These are some of the best cards from HGSS: Triumphant and I think they can be pretty good in a lot of decks, especially LuxChomp! Twins can search out any two cards if you are behind in prizes and Blackbelt can do an extra 40 damage to the active, so you should at the very least test them out. These cards are even better if you play Staraptor FB LV.X (SV) because you can play them as 1-ofs in your deck.
*Side Note: These cards seem like they will be popular for Cities which makes Smeargle (UD) a tad better too!
This card has many uses in any SP decks because it can get back Cyrus’ Conspiracy, a very valuable card in the deck. If you play Staraptor FB LV.X, VS Seeker can only get better because your Supporter engine will be techy, allowing you to get back a wide range of 1-of Supporters.
Sometimes what is needed in a base list isn’t always enough for you and you will have to add more. These are cards you should add at the very end of your deck building process, after you have added all of your techs. Sometimes different tournaments will warrant different counts of cards and you should always have some sort of “sideboard” of cards that you can easily interchange for other cards in your deck.
I don’t feel like matchups are completely necessary because I went through the best techs to add to LuxChomp but, I still think they may help out some people. Anyway, here they are:
LuxChomp vs LuxChomp: Even
This is a mirror match but, you can easily win it if you are the better player and if you have Dragonite FB/Ambipom G, you will do fine. The goal is to isolate their Garchomp C’s/Garchomp C LV.X’s/Garchomp Counter’s and to preserve your resources as much az you can. If they bring up Luxray GL LV.X, you should use Toxicroak G (PR) for another 1HKO. As long as you can rebound KO, you should be fine. Another thing I should mention, you don’t always have to take the 1st prize! I usually try to let my opponent take the 1st prize because my deck’s strength lies in rebound KOs. Either way, the way you play is up to you, just use the above strategy and hope for the best.
LuxChomp vs DialgaChomp: Even, Slightly Favorable
This is pretty much the same matchup as LuxChomp vs LuxChomp but, You can use Luxray GL LV.X as a tool but, their Dialga G LV.X isn’t as powerful in this matchup. Don’t let you think that this slight advantage will win you the match alone though; a fantastic DialgaChomp player will usually beat a good LuxChomp player. Again, Ambipom G & Dragonite FB give you a great advantage and so would Staraptor FB LV.X. Follow the LuxChomp vs LuxChomp strategy in this article and you should be fine.
pokebeach.comLuxChomp vs Gyarados: Favorable
This should be an extremely easy matchup if you play Lucario GL and it should be even easier if you play more anti-Gyarados techs. The goal is to snipe your opponents Sableyes and other weak Pokémon with Garchomp C LV.X until they bring a Gyarados out (preferably with an Expert Belt). After they promote their Gyarados, drop your Lucario GL and 1HKO it with Luxray GL [LV.X]. The match should become really easy at some point when they run out of resources and you will just steamroll through the rest of their deck.
LuxChomp vs Machamp: ???
This match is weird because it can go either way to be honest. If you Power Spray the right Uxie, you might just take control but, they might just donk you and it’s all over from there. Your best bet is to play Toxicroak G (PL) and just try your best, that is all that you can do. If your opponent ever leaves a Machop or Machoke in play, snipe it with a Garchomp C LV.X or use Bright Look. Either way, just do your best, that is the best thing you can do in this matchup.
Well, now I hope you can build a superb LuxChomp list from this part of the article and I also hope you will read part 2/4 when I complete it.
Any issues/concerns/comments/etc. please let me know in the comments below or Facebook or my email.
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– Zach Lesage