Prof-It! Episode 42: How to Build a HGSS-On Pokémon Deck

Hey everybody! I know it’s been a little while, but now that it’s the summer Prof-It! is back in action! I’m trying to implement a lot of new features for the future episodes, but let me know in the comments section what you’d like to see in the future of Prof-It! Good luck at Battle Roads if you go!

Reader Interactions

28 replies

    • Anonymous  → Spam

      It’s not just you–while the only people to say anything about audio problems are on 6P, I’ll definitely try to take it into consideration. With my new format that I’ve done over the past 2 episodes, I just use the audio that the camera has. I decided to record my episode with Renae’s camera, which has gorgeous 1080p, but still probably has less quality than the high-quality mic that I hook up to my computer. I might try using the mic and the camera at the same time in the future–we’ll see how it goes.

      • CarlosPero  → Anonymous

        Good audio is so important.  Just buy a tie-clip microphone (#33-3013) for $30 from Radio Shack, if Renae’s camera has the 1/8″ mic-in jack.  

        Also, the announcement will come in “early June”, not necessarily 6/1.  Would take effect 7/1, though.

        • Anonymous  → Adam

          If I ever end up stepping to a new camera I’d rather get something with a manual focus slider and capacity for different lenses, for if I decide to tackle some more ambitious projects. Had I known about that model though I probably would have pushed to get it over my flip–I’m surprised the price point is so low!

        • CarlosPero  → Anonymous

          We bought the Canon Rebel T3i DSLR recently, precisely because of the awesome lenses we already have, and that it has the latest HD movie capabilities too (inherited from the recently discontinued 60D).

  1. Anonymous

    IMO i prefer hand shuffle like copycat or oak’s over juniper. normally i never have a hand that has nothing good. most of it normally is only part of something good or isnt needed now but might be needed 3 turns later.

    • Sam Stevens  → Anonymous

      juniper is best used when your hand is low or empty, or late game when you have all you need for setting up. it can also mess up the opponent if they portrait and force a juniper… and sometimes the very next card on the top of your deck is the 1 card you needed after a PONT, well juniper would get you that card… plus if you use it with spiritomb in yanmega prime deck for free attack you can also play 1 card you drew, with PONT you cant play anything or it breaks your free attack… but all in all its best just to use both/all 3 to maximize re-freshing

  2. Flare Starfire

     I’m currently using Stantler- one thing to consider is that vs Cleffa, the basics that hit the bench as a result of his attack are eligible for evolving next turn, rather than having to play them down next turn (or having to collector first turn instead of using a different supporter, like judge) meaning that a stantler start is great for getting Ninetales going ASAP, considering if you don’t have it in hand you can use an oaks or judge first turn to try and pull one into your hand while Stantler then auto-searches for your Vulpixes.

  3. Matthew Riddle

    I think we’ll see a few things in an HGSS-on format, some of which may become prominent if the format rotates early and players have to rush to get ready.

    1) There is a lack of clarity for players coming into the new format.
     1a] At the moment, it’s impossible to clearly see which decks are going to rise to the top.
      1ai} A larger percentage of the cards available could see play more than any season before this. Players won’t be locked into playing a small # of most competitive decks at the start, while the format grows from it’s infant stage.
     1b] Nobody has perfectly chosen the best starter or has perfected the best trainer/supporter engine.
      1bi} We will most likely see a large amount of differently built decks. I will find it interesting to see how people choose to run their new format decks.
     1c] Some players will go with the easy answers.
      1ci} The early events may be flooded with very similar decks, but, like mentioned above, each could have their own twist to them.
      1cii} It may be easier for some players to play rogue, as the format may not be solidified yet, but it will be already clear which Pokemon may be more popular early on.
       1cii1| With 2x weakness as the standard now, weakness will play a large part in helping rogue decks do well at events.

    I think it’ll be a lot of fun, and I hope the next few sets bring a lot to the game.

    Pokemon Catcher will have a huge impact on the game when it is eventually released.

    • Anonymous  → Matthew

      Another solid post, with a lot of good insight. Unfortunately I see the format being limited to a small pool of truly competitive decks due to the small card pool and clear advantage of some cards over others, but like you said there will be a ton of variation at the start. 

      Pokemon Catcher will shake the format entirely. I think with it, the “Heavy Hitter” deck will cease to exist. Fast decks like Zekrom, Donphan, Yanmega, etc. will be able to ko whatever basic they want before they evolve. I was disappointed at first when I found that they cut it from Black and White, but I actually think it’s a good decision now. 

  4. Cobi

    I’ve done some serious testing in this new HGSS-On format.  Normally my “trainer engine” list go somewhere around this.  Not all my list include all these cards.  Some aren’t needed in certain decks as they don’t fit the strategy of the deck very well, or are difficult to play in a deck.  A couple examples are Twins in a T2 deck, since you’ll be getting ahead in prizes you won’t be needing these at all.  Or Judge a deck that doesn’t have a form of recovery.  Now onto the engine:
    4 Pokemon Collector
    4 Pokemon Communication
    2-3 Professor Juniper
    2-3 PETM (Professor Elm’s Training Method)
    3-4 PONT (Professor Oak’s New Theory)
    1+ Set up supporter of choice: Juniper, PONT, Copy, Judge, Engineer’s Adjuments, Sage’s Training or Twins
    4 Rare Candy
    1-2 Switch
    1-2 Junk Arm
    4 Starter Pokemon or Dual Ball
    1+ Judge
    1-2 Twins

    Now I will explain how all these interact with each other, as with any engine parts still needs to work together to in order for the engine to work effectively. 

    Let’s start off with the cards that help you get basics.  Even if you have Dual Ball and a search for basics starter, you still can’t beat the consistency and deck space this gives you, MAX this out, no ifs, ands, or buts.  If you combo it with either Dual Ball or starter, it just increases your consistency of getting your basics in play.  We still have a couple good coming into play basics like Spiritomb, Shaymin, Pachirisu among others.  This makes  Dual Ball more effective than a starter as it gets them in your hand, so it’s used more often in T2 decks.  Set up decks or Stage 2 decks like starters that put your basics on the bench, as mentioned before it allows you to start playing your Rare Candy/Stage 2 or Stage 1 next turn.

    Pokemon Communication works get with any of of these cards that search for your basics, as when you have them in hand you can then use Pokemon Communication to get an Evolution or lower your hand count to possibly draw more cards with Magnezone Prime or increase your chances of getting the cards you need when you play a reshuffle your hand Supporter.  Really these is main part of this engine as it gets you any Pokemon you need and combos with well with a lot of other trainers.

    Professor Juniper is still very good in decks that don’t require discard, but it’s effectiveness is increased in decks that do.  Even though your reshuffle hand supporters are great, Juniper just let’s you thin down your deck easier.  On top of that, there are time when you desperately need a couple cards to get back into a game.  Or you now longer need a specific card in a match and can live with discard a couple cards in order to gain that boost.  Like being able to discard Rare Candy when you already have 2 or 3 Stage 2s in play or discarding search for basics/starters when you already have enough basic in play and you won’t be needing many more.
    A high count can still be used if you plan on using Judge but without Magnezone, Ninetails and to a lesser extent Noctowl.

    PETM is simply an extension of P. Communication for decks that play evolutions.  You can however search for an Evolution, use your P. Communication to get a basic you might need.

    PONT is my choice of reshuffle your card hand supporter.  Really it’s only competition is Cocycat and Judge.  Judge is mainly used in decks that have Shuckle/Emboar, Ninetales, Magnezone or to an extent Cleffa.  With very few decks being able to use these cards effectively it should be your supporter of choice as you can keep disrupting your opponent, while you still can recover and even set up from it.  Copycat is a bit inconsistent for this format as many times your opponent won’t have a huge hand since the main engine is PONT or cards that really don’t require you to go much over 6.  For that ones that do, they most likely have Judge to get their hand back down/disrupt their opponent.

    Switch effectiveness increased with cards like Unown Q, Warp Point and Warp Energy being rotated.  It’s a really balanced cards that lets you preserve an energy on an attacker, and possibly moving it to something else or even to Seeker something that has taken a couple hits.

    Junk Arm acts the same way as PETM, it can be an extra Pokemon Communication, or Rare Candy.  It’s useful like Juniper when you can get rid of cards no longer needed or if you have to discard cards in order for your strategy to work.  Rare Candy and P. Communication are the main reason to play at least 1 but there are a couple other efficient trainers that warrant it’s use like PlusPower, Energy Retrieval, Switch, Dual Ball among others.

    Seeker has it’s same use as the previous format.  Reuse a coming into play Power, “healing” a Pokemon that has damage on it.  Or even a Power on Stage 1 or Stage 2 Pokemon which you have a heavy line of in your deck like Floatzel, Kingdra, Machamp, etc.  Comboed with Reuniclus you can also keep a Pokemon that can tank but has a high retreat cost like Dophan or Steelix.  As you can move as much damage as you can from attack to your max HP benched Pokemon and Seeker it up.  It becomes somewhat disruptive now as well as you can make your opponent pick up a Pokemon that they might be needing.  For example, if your opponent has their bench set with a Typhlosion Prime, Ninetales, and a Reshiram with 2 energy already attached to it.  You put them in a tough position by making them have to pick one of those up.  With Rare Candy being slowed down, it’ll take your opponent at least an extra turn to get that Typhlosion back in play, or even Ninetales.  Or in a deck that snipes.  Say your opponent has a full bench, you can play Ditto (TM) and have them discard a Pokemon.  Not a big deal, most decks in this format will have something to discard on their bench.  But then you Seeker them, ok, 2 is not that bad.  But they add up when you take KO a third Pokemon that they were really needing.  You could leave your opponent with 3 Pokemon, but nothing much to hit back with.  We saw glimpses of this in the previous format with being able to remove your opponent’s last bench Pokemon and KOing their active, the effective shouldn’t be as deadly anymore but it’s still there.

    Twins and Rare Candy are mainly for set up/combo/Stage 2 decks.  Twins is really the only effective way to search for energy besides a starter like Girafarig, which I have used with success in my Blastoise/Floatzel deck.  With Twins I have even grab some of the other supporters I might be needed next turn.  This format should make Twins more of a common staple than the previous one.

    • Anonymous  → Cobi

      Great post! I agree with A Z–we’re short on articles on the main page around this time, and I’m sure with this level of writing skill you could put a great front page article with those skills. 

      Just ask Adam–before I even made Prof-It!, all I did was make giant posts just like yours until Adam finally nudged me to make an actual article for the site : P. That was nearly 2 years ago. . . man time flies! 

      • Cobi  → Anonymous

        Thanks Josh, I don’t know about my writing skills being that great but my knowledge of this game is very extensive.  With some editing or better proof reading I could write better articles.  Unfortunately for the Pokemon community, but fortunately for me a great opportunity has been given to me where I will have to dedicate my life to it.  Leading to not having time for Pokemon for a long period  of time or if this opportunity doesn’t end up working out.  Hence, I have decided to take a long break or quit this game after Nationals, again, lol.  But who knows, I’ve tried to quit a couple times before and since previous life plans didn’t go as I expected I found myself returning to Pokemon.  Another way I could I could return is by being successful in my new project and still have enough time to dedicate to Pokemon and be successful at both, but this scenario would be at least two or three years down the road. Only time will tell.

        P.S. This is Christian Cobian or ChrisCobi634 on the ‘gym (your brother has a friendly rivalry vs. me since he has never been able to beat me, hopefully we will be able to play some games in the future)

  5. Sam Stevens

    you didn’t touch on the tyrogue starter OHKOing cleffa, pichu, tyrogue, magnemite or with plus power stantler and smeargle or 2HKO on zekrom if they bolt strike at some point… it has free retreat, no energy cost and can just net you that extra 30 damage you need for KO while having 50% chance of being to sweet while sleeping to revenge KO …. neo sets strike back

    • Anonymous  → Sam

      Yeah, the ONLY think tyrogue can KO is a cleffa or other 30 hp pokemon without pluspowers. The weakness is a shame, because it could have been able to ko sneasel, minccino, magnemite, pachirisu, zorua, etc. without it. As I said, there’s a whole world to cover in HGSS deckbuilding, and more advanced things like techs (no reason really to run more than 1-2 tyrogue) in the future. 

  6. George


    You should consider Girafarig HS as a starter Pokemon in Energy Acceleration Decks. Its “Show Off” attack allows you to search 2 basic Energy from your deck to your hand. Using Girafarig as a starter (4 copies) allows you to draw Energy for Emboar, Feraligatr, Pachirisu, and Floatzel quickly to be there for attaching. Also, by using Girafarig as a sacrifice card (i.e. – run it to draw energy until it is knocked out), you set up Twins to be used early in the game to accelerate Evolving in this slower format.

    What do you think?

  7. DrMime

    Great vid–I enjoyed it, as always. I know B&W just came out, but I’m already curious how the next set will interact with the more Trainer-heavy engine….

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