Lifting the Lid on the Mew LostBox

Right, well with Worlds for you guys and University for me right around the corner, I thought I might write an article on a potential play for the big tournament, as well as an archetype I’ve been investing time into recently.

Mew Box, Mew Toolbox, or my personal favorite, The Mew LostBox is a deck archetype that bases itself around a few key ideas which I feel are essential components to consider. But first of all, lets approach the deck by looking at the two main Pokémon.

1. Mew Prime

pokebeach.comA quick run-through of Mew Prime gives us a Basic Pokémon with free retreat and 60 HP. This is great for a starting Pokémon meaning that starting with it will greatly reduce the chance of a donk, and its Psychic typing doesn’t hurt that either.

However, unlike most starters, Mew Prime is also your main attacker. When asked to provide an example of a main attacker in Pokémon, one wouldn’t be blamed for conjuring images of Magnezone or Reshiram. Big HP and big attacks.

It is important then, to consider the landscape of our metagame both before and after USA’s nationals.

In the lead up, there was only one deck to consider and play. Emboar #20 and Magnezone Prime, or MagneBoar. MagneBoar was, in a word, powerful. High HP, unlimited potential for damage, built-in draw power and unlimited energy attachment in a turn made it a daunting deck to face.

However, people glossed over its early game weaknesses. Swifter decks running multiple Stage 1’s were demonstrated by Canada’s nationals to be the play. Stage 1 decks are faster to get going, require less investment and are more consistent. Any good player will tell you that consistency is key. Almost over anything else in a format like US Nationals was.

So this is when we return to Mew Prime. By that definition of the Metagame, Mew Prime should make for an excellent main attacker, and he does, kind of. Ignoring what Mew does for a moment, it is important to consider that the point of having a Weenie like Mew that can get 1HKO’d by almost anything is that it is swarmable. You can set up Mew at a faster pace than your opponent can set up their attackers.

Now that we’ve justified it as a main attacker, we should then cover what it does. Anybody with any experience with the card should know what it does. Its only attack ‘See Off’, for one Psychic energy, lets you search your deck for a Pokémon and send it to the Lost Zone. This has a simple synergy with its Poké’Body ‘Lost Link’, which allows Mew to use the attack of any Pokémon in either player’s Lost Zone.

Mukpokebeach.comThis is when the imagination can run wild. It tends to very easily. Having the option of including any Pokémon in the format is incredible and are what will form components of the ‘Toolbox’ or ‘Lostbox’ as I call it.

The idea of the Mew LostBox is that you use ‘See Off’ to send Pokémon with low cost, powerful attacks to the Lost Zone in order to mount an offense that swarms Mew’s, utilising cheap attacks that are normally balanced by the fact that you must evolve to use them.

There is a very wide range of choices that can be made with regard to the Lostbox with the most essential being Muk UD and Jumpluff HS.

Sending Muk UD to the Lost Zone provides Mew Prime with the ability to use Muk’s attack ‘Sludge Drag’. Sludge drag, for one Psychic energy, allows you to choose and opponent’s benched Pokémon and switch it with the active. It also makes the new defending Pokémon confused and poisoned.

This can afford you time to set up or simply snipe around the opponent and can present some very challenging/crippling situations for the opponent to work around, which is especially true when the deck’s other main Pokémon line Vileplume is in play.

Jumpluff HS on the other hand, provides Mew with the ‘Oomph’ of a heavy hitting attack for very little energy. For one grass energy, Jumpluff features two attacks. The attack focussed on is ‘Mass Attack’ which does 10 damage multiplied by the number of Pokémon in play, maxing out at 120 damage assuming two full sides of five benched Pokémon and two active Pokémon.

pokebeach.comBefore you go closing this tab thinking you’re going to be hitting for 100-120 damage each turn after turn 1 or 2, please know that isn’t the case.

Higher level players will almost always manipulate their bench to reduce the power of ‘Mass Attack’ and force 1HKOs (One-Hit-Knock-Outs) into 2HKOs etc. There is another Pokémon in the format with a similar attack, Cinccino BW, but I’ll address it later.

One last thing to note about having Jumpluff in the toolbox is that it also grants Mew access to ‘Leaf Guard’, dealing 30 damage for one energy with the added effect of reducing damage done to Mew in the next turn by 30.

I have found opportunities when this attack, like the manipulation of Mass Attack’s damage by your opponent, can force 1HKO moves into 2HKO moves, and is worth using if you are presented with a situation wherein:

  1. You fall 30 damage or less short of dealing a 1HKO
  2. Can survive into your next turn if you prevent 30 or less damage

Just something to keep in mind.

With Mew’s ins and outs addressed, lets move onto Vileplume UD.

2. Vileplume UD

Vileplume UD was hyped before it was released and slowly formed a strong partnership with Gengar SF, providing us with perhaps the only Stage 2 deck able to compete in the Tier 1 arena. Vileplume, at 120 HP, a psychic weakness and a mediocre attack is known for its one, extremely important component – Allergy Flower.

Vileplume UDpokebeach.comAs long as Vileplume is in play, you and your opponent cannot use trainers. It’s one of the very few cards in the format able to do this. Teddiursa CL and Gothitelle in a future set (Emerging Powers?) are able to lock the opponent out of trainers, but neither can as reliably as Vileplume.

One of the most important goals of this deck is to achieve a turn 2 trainer lock (Or Trainer-Item lock as is the proper term). Every turn your opponent is able to use Trainer cards to set up, the worse it is for you. Let’s take A Hahn’s TyRam deck which placed 9-0 at USA’s nationals.

4 Pokémon Communication, 4 Junk Arm, 2 Rare Candy, 3 Pokémon Reversal, 2 Defender, 3 PlusPower. That is 18 cards that are effectively locked out from the opponent’s deck.

I have played games with former Australian National Champion Jason Windham where I have forced him to draw/pass for multiple turns. When you are locked, there isn’t a whole lot you can do about it sometimes.

Trainer Lock can:

  1. Prevent set up
  2. Prevent recovery
  3. Prevent disruption
  4. Prevent opponent from escaping via ‘Switch
  5. Prevent the augmentation of damage

Locking your opponent out of these essential options for dealing with fast decks that ‘Swarm’ in order to overwhelm quicker than the opponent can recover equates to a very strong strategy which works when executed correctly.

pokebeach.comHowever, being able to lock your opponent out of these cards is not enough. This is why I must return to a statement I made earlier. Every turn your opponent is able to use Trainer cards to set up and make use of them, the worse it is for you.

This is only compounded by the high amount of Trainers, meaning they need to wait less turns to meet the conditions of their own deck to set up and make use of them. Even Trainers like PlusPower and Defender.

Just because your opponent has 4 Pokémon Communication in their deck, it does not equate to a need for all four of them, in much the same way we run lighter numbers of Stage 1 Pokémon in Stage 2 Evolution lines.

This can be a short-coming of trainer lock. If you haven’t established a lock by at least turn 3, you could be well on your way to losing. To do well with this deck you must establish a Vileplume on your Bench, and it must happen as early as possible.

So we’ve got the A-Team line-up. Mew Prime, sending Muk UD and Jumpluff HS to the Lost Zone, while Vileplume sets up on the Bench to block trainers. All of this needs to happen relatively at the same time and ideally, by the end of your second turn.

In Summary:

Turn 1 ‘See Off’
Turn 2 ‘See Off’ + Vileplume

So we have a core strategy composed of a number of different ideas but most easily summarised as:

  1. A swarmable main attacker
  2. Disruption of the opponents active Pokémon
  3. Hitting with heavy damage for low energy
  4. Trainer lock

Leaving us now with much more to consider.

The LostBox

pokebeach.comIn my testing, I started with lots of options. I had many ‘1-of’ cards, with as many as four different Pokémon. I eventually peeled back the numbers until settling on very simply:

0/0/2 Jumpluff HS
0/2 Muk UD

Yeah. For all of the hype I gave to the ‘Unlimited Possibilities’ Mew Prime seems to radiate. You need to look at it in the same way ‘MewPerior’ came about last format. It wasn’t about providing Mew with a billion options to work with. MewPerior aimed to deal upwards of 250 damage every turn and sent Rhyperior LV.X to the Lost Zone to do so. The rest of the deck devotes itself to ensuring that the set up and execution happens.

A deck like Mew Box is crippling to the opponent at the best of times, but about as reliable as…well, for the sake of political correctness, I’ll settle with simply ‘it’s not very consistent’ at the worst of times.

In a world where we don’t have the consistency of Majestic Dawn and onwards, everything you can do to simply play a consistent deck is vital, and that means limiting the capabilities of your deck for the purpose of making sure what you absolutely must make happen, does.

However, my definition of consistency may not fit yours, and I think it’s a word that is both subjective and able to be bent. Because I really want to push this article out, I’m going to gloss over the different options I’ve noticed in my own research using the ‘Researching Tower’, and are conclusions reached by other players as well in threads and comments all over the place.

Crobat Prime

pokebeach.comCrobat Prime is the first port of call after Jumpluff and Muk for players seeking to add some versatility to their decks. For one Psychic energy, Mew Prime is granted access to two very useful attacks. ‘Severe Poison’ inflicts Poison onto your opponent, however, four damage counters are added to the poisoned Pokémon instead of one between turns.

This can be huge as it forces the opponent to expend energy to retreat if they want to survive with Trainer lock preventing them from using Switch. Even if they escape to the bench, Crobat’s second attack, ‘Skill Dive’ enables Mew to hit a Benched Pokémon for 30, allowing you to follow up and KO anything that tries to retreat to the bench.

Not only that, 30 damage represents one of our current format’s ‘Magic Numbers’ in that 30 HP is something we commonly associate with Baby Pokémon such as Cleffa and Tyrogue, providing you with cheap prizes – something that isn’t afforded to this deck all that often.

If you want to add options to this deck, I strongly endorse Crobat Prime as a potential option, and one that you will see present in many builds.

Umbreon Prime/CL

pokebeach.comUmbreon Prime is an option I haven’t seen considered much, if at all in other builds. For some background reading, kn3ll_ did a great job here spelling out the ups and more importantly, the downs of the card.

The attack we’re primarily interested in here is ‘Moonlight Fang’ which for a single Darkness energy prevents all effects, including damage, done to Umbreon (or in our case, Mew Prime) by attacks from your opponent’s Pokémon that has any Poké-Powers or Poké-Bodies.

This card was reviewed before the results of the American National Championships, and if the US and Canadian results are anything to go by, I’d say Umbreon may be a little more playable in this format than we first thought.

Oscar Morales’ Nationals report demonstrates that, despite the criticism, Umbreon can splash into some decks.

Take MegaJudge for example. Both attackers have Powers, so given the right circumstances you could very well lock them into some difficult positions. One might argue, “They’ll just use their Stage 1 evolutions” to which I’ll argue that the Stage 1’s are run in light numbers of 2 or less anyway.

All this said and done, I cannot back this theorymon as much as I’d like to. I’ve not had the chance to test it properly yet, however I intend to include it in future builds (metagame shift pending).

Xatu UL

Xatu UL is specifically a tech against Machamp Prime. For one P Energy, Xatu does 20 multiplied by the number of energy attached to the opponent with ‘Psywave’. A full-powered Machamp will have four energy, and this equates to a 160 damage ‘Psywave’ from Mew Prime thanks to Machamp’s psychic weakness.

This is a very matchup specific tech, and I don’t expect it to be used too much, if at all. This is a prime example of putting too much stock into versatility and not enough into consistency.

Pidgeot TM

Pidgeot TMpokebeach.comPidgeot renders to Mew a very interesting attack when sent to the Lost Zone. ‘Headwind’ deals 20 damage and causes the defending Pokémon’s attacks to cost two Colorless more. While this is an interesting option, I cannot really justify it in my mind as being terribly effective.

First of all, the opponent can still just retreat. While that’s still easier said than done when they are Poisoned and Confused, as is caused by ‘Sludge Drag’, it is not a terribly crippling situation as the opponent would probably sooner either:

  1. Retreat
  2. Use it as a scape goat while they set up other Pokémon

You could potentially use it stall out a Donphan setting up a turn 2 Earthquake for a few turns while you get Vileplume online, but remember that on the other hand, Yanmega Prime, one of the most popular Pokémon in our format right now, can circumvent energy requirements with its body. Rendering the effect useless.

Krokorok BLW

Now Krokorok is just cool and that is invariably because I’m Australian, where ‘Crocs Rule’. Krok provides us with ‘Torment’ which for a single colorless does 10 damage + prevent the defending Pokémon from using an attack next turn of your choice.

Like Umbreon, I think there’s potential to be effective, especially against one trick ponies like Donphan and while you’re only doing 10 damage a turn, poison is helping you too. Again, I’m not completely sold because it is something I have not personally tested, but am very interested in trying myself!

Cinccino BLW

pokebeach.comCinccino is much like Jumpluff and serves the same purpose that Jumpluff does. For 2 Colorless, Minccino provides you with ‘Do the Wave’, allowing you to deal 20 damage multiplied by the number of Pokémon on your Bench.

There are ups and downs of using Minccino. The benefit is that your opponent can’t control how many benched Pokémon you have in play bar Ditto TM. The downside is that you’re needing two energy instead of one. One may argue that in the early game, you’re attaching multiple energy to use Jumpluff, however, you must then consider that in the long term, in order to attack, you are investing twice the energy as you normally would.

Additionally, it is important to consider what that guaranteed 100 damage does compared to say, 80 or 70 damage? Without considering status effects, perhaps it isn’t worth considering as many of the Pokémon you’re dragging active will have more than 100 HP anyway, forcing a 2HKO.

If you consider partner Pokémon such as Roserade, you may find success in being able to consistent output 100 damage with poison damage, but I’ll address that later.

Leafeon UD

Leafeon UD

While on the topic of alternatives to Jumpluff, I feel Leafeon could be quite a viable option. The attack we’re interested in as far as Leafeon goes is ‘Miasma Wind’. For a single C energy, this attack does 50 damage multiplied by the number of special conditions affecting the defending Pokémon. There are a number of Leafeon based decks out there that use Pokémon such as Roserade UD to place those special conditions on the opponent and deal big damage for low energy with Leafeon.

As for Mew Prime, you have a number of ways you can take advantage of Leafeon as a LostBox Pokémon. Namely, the fact that you are dragging Pokémon active with ‘Sludge Drag’ means you are afflicting the opponent with two status conditions. This equates to the opponent having to deal with receiving 100 damage next turn if they do not successfully retreat or KO Mew Prime.

Leafeon UD I feel is a much stronger alternative to Cinccino BLW, but requires much more planning in that you want to ensure that you are hitting that 100 damage when you want to be able to. As I’ll reveal later, Roserade UD as a Bench-sitter in this deck and should you choose to explore this route of using Roserade UD, I’m confident that you’ll find this is a perfectly viable strategy. I intend on testing Leafeon UD in the near future.

Sharpedo TM

Sharpedo TMpokebeach.comWith the opponent trainer locked and disrupted, proceed to try to make them drop their hand with ‘Strip Bare’. ‘Strip Bare’, for a single darkness energy, deals 20 damage and on landing 2 heads, forces their opponent to discard their whole hand.

This could honestly spell game over and I’m wanting to consider cards with similar effects. Ambipom TR and Persian HS are both Pokémon with strong disruption capabilities as well. If the opponent is locked with an unwanted active Pokémon and losing resources from their hand at the same time, it could spell disaster.

Given the recent successes of players such as Justin Williams and Alaric M-B with their disruption based builds, this may well be a solid option given the ‘Disruptive’ aspect the deck already has in terms of ‘Sludge Drag’ and ‘Allergy Flower’.

In my mind it definitely deserves a look, and may be a variation I test this weekend, ahead of Australia beginning to send its players to the Lost Zone (Worlds).

Zoroark BLW

Copy the opponent’s big attacks! By now, most of you should know Zoroark exists as a Revenge KO Pokémon in every sense of the word, allowing you to take advantage of copying an opponent’s attack, regardless of energy requirement, for a Double Colorless with ‘Foul Play’.

I won’t get into the technicalities of the card here, but you can read about them on the Pokégym compendium.

pokebeach.comThis provides Mew Prime with even more ‘Oomph’ if you suspect you’re heading into a matchup that really needs more damage output to keep up, such as MagneBoar or ReshiPhlosion. Being able to 1HKO or something similar may be crippling to the opponent who is struggling to get anything set up.

There are a lot more ideas out there and it’s up to you to figure out what works for you. Perhaps you’re like me and want to stick to something that’s consistent in the sense of limiting options to maximise core strategies, or you may seek comfort in the Lost Box’s true sense of the ‘Tool Box’ aspect by making sure you have enough Lost Zone candidates to deal with the many situations you’ll face in the Last Chance Qualifier, or at Worlds if you’re an awesome person unlike myself.

Partner Pokémon

As we head boldly forward, we launch into one of the last few areas of discussion – Partner Pokémon. As good as Mew is, it is also important to consider adding a secondary attacker to offset its weaknesses (Namely its low HP).

A wise choice, and my personal preference, is including a strong line of Yanmega Prime. The rogues out there may groan, but the fact remains that Yanmega is quick, free to retreat and attacks for no energy, including a 40 damage snipe.

Supporting Yanmega, my personal build includes a light Sunflora HS line to provide consistency under trainer lock, and to help you search out Vileplume ASAP. It’s Pokémon power lets you search your deck for a grass Pokémon once a turn and put it into your hand. Being able to use something akin to Pokémon Communication every turn under trainer lock is something to strongly consider.

My build also features Roserade UD as another Bench-sitter. Roserade’s ‘Energy Signal’ Poké-Power allows you to poison the opponent when you attach a Psychic energy to Roserade and Confuse them when you attach a Grass energy. You can also do both if you attach a Rainbow Energy, and most Mew Box builds run 4, which makes Roserade a worthy addition.

pokebeach.comIn terms of having access to a partner attacking Pokémon, Yanmega is the only one I have tested. It’s up to you to really just make a Metagame call and decide what the play is for you.

I believe two strong contenders are Donphan Prime and Lucario CL in order to deal with Magnezone and Zekrom. Donphan is a beast, and if you provide it with the cover of trainer lock, it could absolutely tear through an opponent. The big disadvantage I see in Donphan is that despite resisting against Lightning for quite a while, it will also harm you weenie Bench-sitters, and against Yanmega/Magnezone, that isn’t wise to do.

Lucario CL on the other hand hits some very magic numbers. After sending two Pokémon to the Lost Zone (Muk/Jumpluff for example), its attack ‘Dimension Sphere’, for two C energy does 30 damage plus 20 for each of your Pokémon in the Lost Zone.

So after a standard set up, Lucario hits 70 damage. This is ideal as Magnezone, your main target has a weakness to fighting and 140 HP. This puts it in 1HKO range. Zekrom is a similar story. This is opposed to Donphan who falls short, and under trainer lock, cannot augment the damage with a PlusPower.

One-of Pokémon

Finally there are a number of ‘1-of’ Pokémon I feel can help make an impact.

Jirachi UL/CL is a prime tech card to consider. Its attack, ‘Time Hollow’, allows you to devolve a number of Pokémon equal to the number of energy attached to Jirachi by one stage. This is a great tech, as it allows you to place damage, then drop a surprise ‘Time Hollow’ to make them pick up a number of their evolved Pokémon back into their hands.

If you time it correctly, you can make sure your opponent has received damage equal to their previous evolution’s HP and grab multiple knock outs in one turn.

Worth mentioning is also its Poké-Power ‘Stardust Song’, which lets you flip three coins as it comes into play, allowing you to attach psychic energy from the discard pile equal to the amount of heads you flipped, meaning you can keep it a surprise as well as hit multiple devolutions when it comes into play.

pokebeach.comAnother contender is Spinarak HS, which with its attack ‘Spider Web’, can lock an opponent’s Cleffa (and potentially other non-attacking Pokémon such as Manaphy) indefinitely.

This provides you with a pretty lame option in being able to lock the opponent indefinitely if you can bring trainer-lock online before they switch out. With trainer lock, there is no way for them to escape if it is similar to Cleffa with attacks that do no damage and don’t allow them to jump back to the opponent’s bench or hand.

The other exceptions are Machamp Prime’s ‘Fighting Tag’, which would let them be switched out by the power and Kingdra Prime, who can damage Spinarak with ‘Spray Splash’.

If the correct conditions are met for a Spider Web lock, you can potentially force the game to time-out and win at the end of +3 turns by knocking the Cleffa out with another Pokémon.

However ‘lame’ the strategy is, it could be pretty effective. I don’t use the strategy however because once again, it clouds the main strategy of the deck and could very well backfire on you in the rare cases that you do manage to land it.

One last wildcard that I don’t think many, if anybody has considered is Aipom UL. Aipom’s most interesting attack, ‘Tail Code’, quite simply lets you move an Energy attached to the defending Pokémon and attach it to another of your opponent’s Pokémon. The potential for abuse when you consider the nature of Mew Box is huge, just as there is in utilising Spinarak HS.

pokebeach.comConsider a situation wherein your opponent may bench a heavy retreater such as Magnezone Prime. If they pass to you without attaching energy to it, half the strategy is already complete. Assuming you have trainer lock active and Mew Prime ready to go, if you ‘Sludge Drag’ the Magnezone Prime active, they may consider attempting to attach energy to it to retreat in a couple of turns or attack next turn.

This is when Aipom would hit your bench. Merely switching out Mew Prime for Aipom and attaching an energy provides you with a means of indefinitely trapping Magnezone Prime, sans the situations I outlined that might break a Spinarak HS lock.

By simply moving this energy to a benched Pokémon, you are effectively denying them where they need the energy to be, and denying them both the ability to attack and retreat with the combination of trainer and energy denial.

The opponent may cotton on to the situation and begin attaching elsewhere. You can simply switch Aipom out and start damaging their bench with a Pokémon such as Yanmega Prime and switch back if they start attaching to their active again.

Eventually, their active will succumb to poison damage, all the while, you have manipulated energy onto Pokémon that are easy KOs, or have sufficiently damaged their bench to the point of being able to simply swarm them with cheap ‘Mass Attack’ KOs. Aipom UL is a card I definitely intend on including in future builds.

Trainers, Supporters and Energy

Now that we’re closing in on the nitty-gritty, there’s not a whole lot more I want to elaborate on. The other side of the deck, Items, Supporters and Stadiums are a no brainer in that you should be running less Trainers than the usual HS-on deck given that you’re aiming to implement a universal trainer-lock.

The utility in this deck is in shutting off the resource that trainers represent. You replace this with the LostBox, while the opponent struggles with their equivalent options now denied until Vileplume is dealt with.

The only truly important thing to keep in mind, other than that your trainers will become useless, is that you are aiming for a turn 2 Vileplume. Not turn 3 or 4. As soon as possible. This presents a conundrum wherein you need to think about the importance of hitting a quick Vileplume against the fact that afterward, the cards you would be utilising to get there (Pokémon Communication and Rare Candy) will become dead-draws.

pokebeach.comAs for Supporters, just run what compliments your deck. I max out on Copycat for example because I run Yanmega Prime. Something you can keep in mind as far as discard supporters like Sage’s Training and Professor Juniper against hand refresh supporters such as Professor Oak’s New Theory is that trainer lock builds will begin to fill your hand with dead cards.

Potentially dead cards in Mew Box after properly setting up both the Lost Zone and Vileplume include every trainer remaining in your deck, multiples of Lost Zone bound Pokémon included for consistency or Lost Zone Pokémon not suited for the matchup and pieces of the Vileplume line you may draw into after establishing Vileplume itself.

Not to mention cards that become irrelevant after some time such as Pokémon Collector.

This count may well equate to more than a quarter of your deck, so it’s important to consider that perhaps instead of shuffling those dead cards back into your deck, you at least run some amount of cards such as Professor Juniper and Sage’s Training in some amount to manage your resources appropriately.

Consider also that these cards may not necessarily provide the fodder for discard effects you might see in other decks that run Junk Arm for example. As deck builders, we are always trying to achieve a balance that sees you progress through your resources at just the correct rate – a variable that is different for every deck and every play style.

Energy-wise is up to you and may be wholly dependent on the kind of Mew Box you decide to play. I won’t say much more than that my build runs more Psychic than Grass and maxes out Rainbow given that my current build only runs Muk and Jumpluff as options. Just find a ratio that you’re happy with and keep on testing.

You may want to consider Double Colorless or Rescue Energy and can acceptably be run as 1-of or 2-of additions. Double Colorless can help with certain Mew Box members or as a means of getting Vileplume out of the Active Spot. Rescue Energy either grants you a fifth Mew or retains another Yanmega line.

Build Tips

I decided not to include a decklist with this article. I feel that by definition as an archtype, a decklist or even a skeleton could constrain and limit your personal Mew Box build. (To be honest though, once I’d submitted this article I realised I hadn’t included one :P). If you feel you need a skeleton list to work of, a number of public articles on SixPrizes and forum threads contain them and should serve as a good starting point.

What I will do is reiterate to you a final list of of final advice:

  • Always 4 Mew Prime.
  • Include Tyrogue HS/CL for cheap donks and Manaphy UL for Pokémon based draw power. One of each is sufficient as neither are your ideal starter.
  • A heavier-than-just-a-tech Vileplume line is okay.
  • 0-0-2 Muk UD.
  • Your Jumpluff HS count is dependent on the intended level of versatility.
  • Look for synergy in LostBox Pokémon.
  • Choose a Stage 1 partner attacker (I recommend Yanmega).
  • Consider support Pokémon such as Sunflora HS and Roserade UD to increase consistency. 1-1 lines are okay.
  • Prioritise a turn 2 Vileplume in your trainer counts.
  • Strike a balance between hand refresh and discard supporters that suits you and that compliments your LostBox.
  • Lower energy counts (12-13) is okay, especially if you choose Yanmega Prime. Include as many as 4 Rainbow Energy.
Be creative and daring in your builds! Strategise, develop and test. Don’t be afraid to scrap an idea, because this deck will provide you with many more.

So after all is said and done, at the end of the day, is Mew Box worth it?

The Verdict

It’s difficult to say. In terms of a viable deck at Worlds, I wouldn’t put too much stock into it doing well. A skilled player could definitely take it deep into the tournament. However, decks such as Reshiram/Typhlosion and even Yanmega/Magnezone provide it with a lot of trouble.

In my testing against decks such as Yanmega/Magnezone/Kingdra, there is very rarely any chance of a swing. Matches almost definitely just drift in one player’s favor, and it can be very challenging to turn the tide back.

This is because of the nature of Mew Box. With options locked out in terms of trainers on both sides of the field, making grand plays that the opponent doesn’t expect doesn’t happen at all often.

In terms of hard results, we saw 3 Mew Box decks in USA’s Nationals after the 2 in Canada’s Nationals and none in Mexico’s.

Mew Box was a surprise deck, so ironically, I’m not surprised at its lack of success at US nationals a week later, as while at least Yanmega was at least a known quantity. Mew Prime decks were more or less unheard of.

My personal opinion of Mew Box is that it is a fun and rewarding Archetype that’s difficult to play correctly. Each game I play, I’m learning something new. Some new way of prioritising my goals, new targets for attacks, the same kinds of things you learn playing any deck.

pokebeach.comMew’s low HP is okay. I would have said excellent before America’s nationals given that decks were expending a lot of resources and performing 1HKOs anyway. Now with the shift to attackers like Yanmega, there poses a lot of problems for Mew Box in general.

This is a disclaimer. Please don’t think that Mew Box is a Tier 1 deck. Even decks like Reshiram/Typhlosion do well against this deck (Read: Make’s Mew it’s female Herdier). If you want to take something like this to Worlds, all the more power to you. But as the metagame shifts ever more toward quick Stage 1 decks, this deck loses strength as its preferable opponents, Stage 2’s such as MagneBoar, fall to the wayside.

You need to play this deck with your strategy in mind. Turn 1 ‘See Off’, Turn 2 ‘See Off’ and Vileplume. At least at a mid-range level of play, if you can meet those objectives, things will fall into place.

If those few players that did well at Canada’s and USA’s nationals could do well with the deck in a format infested with Yanmega decks, then perhaps there’s a chance that a good player could take a build to Worlds and perhaps do really well.

Beyond Worlds, I intend on continuing with Mew Box until at least the first Premier Event of the new season. Emerging Powers just means that Reversal will work every time against me if I let them ever use it.


Finally, please check out my YouTube channel where I have a number of test matches online for you to watch, including my Mew Box build.

That’s just about it. Thank you very much to a number of people.

Jason Windham AKA MewJadester for testing with me and helping me fine tune the deck.

My girlfriend for being very good at pulling Mew Primes and Yanmega Primes from blister packs.

The SixPrizes Underground writers and staff who have provided me with a tremendous amount of insight through their articles. I regret not throwing down the cash earlier, but hindsight is always 20-20 I guess.

. . .

Oh you thought I was finished?

Since you’ve made it this far, I thought I’d tack on a bonus blog for those of you who aren’t satisfied with a 4500+ article. I like writing, so what can I say? I wrote this a little while ago and never posted it, so here you go :)

PokéLife: The EveryTrainer

pokebeach.comHi. You may remember me from my Australian Nationals report that I wrote about a month ago. In the mean time I’ve been living and breathing the new format, making all kinds of decks to test with and against. Natalie, my girlfriend, is hopeless when it comes to blisters, and as such we’ve got plenty of HS-on cards ready and waiting.

But if I have to be really honest, the last month or so has been spent doing more than that. Between arguing with my telephone company and everything else that comes from being a self-autonomous member of Australian society, I haven’t done a great deal.

I get the feeling however, that I’m not the only one. I get the feeling that for every player in the USA that went to Nationals to draw cards and flip coins, many, many more didn’t and for a lot of reasons. This is not to say that HS-BW is a bad format. I love it. I’m writing this article to recognise and validate the greater community of players that at the very least, didn’t attend Nationals.

At this point you may be doubting the usefulness of this blog to you. Perhaps you should, and if you are amongst that group of people you are probably not the target audience.

Pokémon, the creation of Satoshi Tajiri, is an amazing thing to behold if you take a step back and look at how deeply rooted it is in society. Something about a yellow mouse/rat creature that shoots lightning that seems to draw people in like a magnet. If you’re anything like me, you grew up with it. It’s a childhood fantasy, an adventure, something that some decade and a bit onwards you look back on and marvel at how far it has come.

In reality however, it’s not all gym battles and saving the world. It’s more like tertiary education battles and saving for bills. Gym leaders are lecturers or teachers and that yen you won? Well the phone bill is on its way (or already here if you’re in my position).

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not here to try and snap you back to reality. Chances are if you’re this far into the article, you’ve got a realistic handle on it. Chances are that you’re reading SixPrizes to make up for the fact that you’re not in a position to invest significant time into playtesting. Why?

There’s no straight answer to that. Even people who playtest a lot. Even people in the PokéCommunity inner circle will miss testing time for the most normal reasons. Based on a survey of SixPrizes Underground members, your lives, our lives, are more jam-packed than an SP deck.

pokebeach.comYou, the readers of this article (if there are any) and high school students, college/university students, workers, parents, league owners and judges, new, old and everything in between. It’s rather amazing, and one of the things I like most about these kinds of communities.

The thing I like most about gaming communities such as Pokémon, is that there is a very human element to them. All of the online programs in the world cannot substitute the importance of playing physical games. It’s a game that draws many different demographics of people together, people who would normally never associate with each other and brings them together, bound by a common thread – Pokémon.

I’ve been part of it in gaming communities before joining the Pokémon TCG community. Communities made up of people who would never, ever, associate with each other. Communities like Pokémon TCG’s are composed of people who are doctors or lawyers, IT or car savvy, full-time parents or breadwinners, students just trying to pass exams and fit in somewhere in the world and people who want to be the best like no-one ever was.

You would be surprised at the kinds of bonds and friendships and social networks you can build. Playing in the TCG is just as valid as joining any kind of club or hobby and you’ll make friends for life. In fact, my own active involvement in gaming communities I can attribute, one way or another, my own current situation, which ironically, has resulted in even less free time than before. As a tertiary student, my best advice to those of you out there who still live at home: STAY THERE (sorry Poképarents).

To many of you, I want to say, don’t be disappointed because you’ve never top-cutted. I’m sure my girlfriend and I are close to having dropped a thousand dollars on the game collectively within the past year and I’m also sure neither of us regret it, despite never having made it into the top cut of any competition.

At the end of the day there has to be a reason right? Well no, besides having fun. Why do we stick to this game? Maybe you should ask a teacher why they became a teacher? A lot of it comes from wanting to give back to the community as it has provided to you.

A sense of belonging. Friends. A network. People you can hang out with. People who are parents with respectable jobs. People you can sympathise with as you go through life’s many trials. These people come from every walk of life.

The PokéLife, ain’t it grand?

Reader Interactions

23 replies

  1. Anonymous

    When discussing Umbreon, you wrote: “Take MegaJudge for example. Both attackers have Powers, so given the right circumstances you could very well lock them into some difficult positions.”  But Yanmega is still free to Linear Attack your bench, hitting you for 40 while Mew/Umbreon only does 30 to Yanmega.  Since Yanmega is everywhere, Umbreon’s value in the deck is limited.

    • Anthony Smith  → Anonymous

      I see. I thought id addressed moat of the ‘oh, but yanmega’ arguments. Nice catch!

      Given this, if you want to tread down the umbreon route, I might suggest Vespiquen UD who blocks damage to your benched grass pokemon.

  2. Joshua Pikka

    I have tried a deck like this and it works quite well. 

    Don’t be so cyncial about Pidgeot though, it is a great card in this deck.  Yes its useless against Yanmega, but I haven’t seen anyone that has a deck that only attacks with Yanmega.  Its great in the Reshiram matchup, you just Pokemon Catcher up the Typhlosion or Emboar line before it evolves (this is after Pokemon Catchers release obviously) and knock it out with Jumpluff.  Then, use Pidgeot to stall on Reshiram while you setup Vileplume and or Yanmega.  It also works well with Donphan.  Because we know, Donphan is not that great of a card, but it does well because it is fast.  If you take away the speed from Donphan, than Donphan doesn’t look that great anymore.  Pidgeot can also be used against Magnezone Prime.  The uses are endless. 

    • Anthony Smith  → Joshua

      It’s probably a kind of tunnel vision I’ve developed by testing against decks that laugh and just attach that Dce.

      Jason Windham you troll! ;)

      Thanks for the insight Pikkdogs.

  3. Sam W

    Did someone mention me? …Oh well. Great article! Really interesting. Seriously. I never put much stock into Mew, but I’d be willing to give it a try now. Thanks.

  4. Adam Capriola

    Great article Anthony! I especially liked the PokeLife section… it is pretty amazing how many different walks of life come together to play this game. I never really thought about it like that before, so thanks for pointing it out. :)

    • Anthony Smith  → Adam

      I thought you might like it. It’s how I feel about gaming communities that come together like this. Leagues are amazing social networks, and something about pokemon attracts people from all demographics so there’s amazing opportunities to network or even just to make friends.


  5. David Wiken

    Been watching your playtesting-matches on youtube for a while now, and there are a couple of things that seem alarming to me regarding the LostBox…

    1. Vileplume IS the deck… Without the trainer-lock most of the decks potential seems to be outsped.
    2. Yanmega eats Oddish for breakfast… Featuring a mediocre 40 HP, Oddish suffers the cruel fate of being early game bug-nourishment. Unless you get Vileplume right there, on t2, a lasting trainer-lock against a Yanmega-inspired deck seems highly unlikely.
    3. One never really seems to get the neccessary time to see off more than one pokemon, hence sort of dismissing the toolbox principle. By turn 3, most decks nowadays will have boardcontrol with a fast Stage 1, often beeing able to constantly OHKO Mews.
    4. The lock isn’t really all that favourable when paired with Mew. Especially post-red collection, when Eviolite has been released, there just are too many great trainers Mew misses out on together with plume. Revive for instance.

    Even though I don’t really fancy the LostBox idea, I consider your article to be really well written! Keep up the good work;)

    • Anthony Smith  → David

      Thank you very much for the insight and the kind words :)

      You may note that I am always benching oddish 2 at a time. It’s more or less the only way to get to vileplume if you don’t go first. It is unfortunate, but this deck features an Achilles heel bigger than a regigigas at times and its that glaring weakness that undoes it so often.

      Compounding that, I see your point about the ‘time’ issue in terms of turns available to set up. It’s why my set up is more vanilla.

  6. Zac

    Fantastic article, i’m playing a mewbox deck right now. I have most cards in your list in mine, because I think it is the best one out there. But, because you discussed so many possibilities, it makes me think that mewbox is an even better deck, with possibilities to put anything you want in it. Great read, I was happy that someone wrote an article on it.

  7. Colin Peterik

    Another 1 of tech that is really fun in this deck is Celebi with future sight… You’ll See! ;)

  8. Edgar F

    I’ll definitely bring Mew up in my next article, which is going to be about alternate formats, and the fun I’m having with it in DP-on Extended right now, with Garchomp Reanimator.

    • Grant Manley  → Shane

      Why would he? You don’t get Magnetic Draw and Mew deck typically don’t have energy acceleration so it would be impossible to consistently attack with it.

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