pokebeach.comHey guys, it’s Sam Liggett here with an article on Mewlock. Just to let you know who I am, where I come from, and what my accomplishments are, here you go. I started playing Pokémon right after EX Crystal Guardians was released back in 2007, but I didn’t start to play competitively until the following season right after Diamond and Pearl was released.
I am in the Masters division, and I live in Memphis, TN. I have won countless Battle Roads and City Championships, placed 1st at one State Championship, 3rd at two others, and 5th at two others. I have placed in the Top 16 of Regionals twice and Top 32 once. As far as Nationals goes, I have placed in the Top 128, Top 64, Top 32, and Top 8 four different years. I have competed in Worlds twice and placed in the top 32 one of the two times.
I may not have quite as impressive of a resume as Chris Fulop or Jay Hornung, but I at least know that you start with the card that says “Basic” on it.
Backtracking a little bit, when the early rotation was officially announced after Spring Battle Roads of last year, my friends and I went crazy trying to figure out what “The Deck” was. I played Magnezone/Yanmega for Nationals, making it to the top cut but having my journey end at the Top 64 table. Now, I had remained in the top 15 or so spots in the North American Rankings up until this point, but at nationals I got donked three times during Swiss.
This means having your only Pokémon Knocked Out on your opponent’s first turn, before you even get to draw. I lost 28 points for each of these losses, and won only about 8 for each win. When Nationals was over, I had dropped in the rankings down to 52nd place or so, missing the cut off for Worlds.
I competed in the LCQ in San Deigo, playing Magnezone/Yanmega once again, but didn’t make it to the top 8 tables that were granted admission into the main event. Come Fall Battle Roads, I was ready to snag some Championship Points with Mewlock.
I played Mewlock for every single Battle Road I played in this fall, a total of 5. For my three best finishes, I placed 1st, 3rd, and 4th with the following decklist:
Pokémon – 25
4 Yanma TM
1 Gloom UD
2 Muk UD
1 Cleffa HS/CL
Trainers – 23
Energy – 12
This list may look fairly standard. Well, that’s because it is. In my month with Mew, I rediscovered that playing a deck with as few techs as possible is the safest route, and many times the best route. I toyed around with many different techs, some that are more common than others. They included Jirachi UD, Aipom UL, Smoochum HS, Darkrai & Cresselia LEGEND, Entei & Raikou LEGEND, Noctowl HS, Weavile UD, Rescue Energy, and Tyranitar Prime.
pokebeach.comLong story short, none of these techs were worth adding to the deck if I was going to have to sacrifice playing the fourth Pokémon Communication or the Sunflora line. Some of these techs were really good assets to the deck, but the deck just did not set up well enough every time for my liking.
During a typical game, you want to start with Mew Prime and a P Energy to use “See Off” as soon as possible putting a Muk in your Lost Zone. It is also optimal to open with a Pokémon Collector in your hand, which you play to search out Oddish, Oddish, and Mew Prime.
Sunflora and Yanmega are usually your next priority in setting up, but the ultimate goal is to have Muk and Jumpluff in your Lost Zone, Vileplume out on your field, and Mew Primes and Yanmega Primes ready to attack.
Now that the decklist and strategy have each been introduced, allow me to elaborate on the uses of each of the cards in the deck.
4 Mew Prime: This is pretty standard, 60 HP Basic, free retreat, one of your main attackers. The idea is to “See Off” Muk or Jumpluff with Mew Prime early, and then have its attacks at your disposal for the rest of the game. You just have to be incredibly careful with how many Mews you let get Knocked Out; you only have four.
4 Yanmega Prime: 110 HP, Stage 1, ridiculous Poké-body, free retreat, above par attacks for no energy. Yanmega’s Poké-Body allows you to use its attacks for no energy cost if you have the same amount of cards in your hand as your opponent. There are many ways to match your opponents hand size. You can play Energy or Pokémon to lower your hand size, Pokémon Collector or Sunshine Grace off of Sunflora to increase it, and you have eight shuffle and draw Supporters to match it easily. You can snipe for 40 damage anywhere with Yanmega or swing for 70 straight up.
4 Yanma: Yanma is just here to evolve into Yanmega. Free retreat is great as well (Yanma’s Poké-body allows it to retreat for no energy cost). Yanma is always a solid starter if you don’t open with a Mew Prime in your hand.
2 Vileplume: This card makes the deck a threat to the rest of the field. Vileplume’s Poké-body states that while it is in play, neither player can play Trainer Cards. Mewlock only plays a total of seven Trainer Cards, and you can get the Trainer lock out when you chose to, but many decks play a lot more than seven trainers. I played against a straight Donphan deck in one Battle Road that played 42 total Trainer cards.
When Vileplume is out, you eliminate the chance for your opponent to play Catcher, PlusPower, or Switch, as well as hinder their setup by blocking cards like Rare Candy and Pokémon Communication. You need to set Vileplume up as soon as possible.
3 Oddish: You play three because you absolutely must play two Oddish onto your bench at the same time if you want to have a chance at getting Vileplume out. Not only do you need to bench two Oddish at once, but you need to have a way to get Vileplume set up in the turn or two after playing Oddish because if not your opponent can play Catcher and Knock Out your Oddishes one after another, or snipe them with Yanmega one after another.
1 Sunflora: Without Pokémon Communication, having Sunflora provides you with a way to get out all of your Grass Pokémon. Sunflora is also great for using Sunshine Grace to search out a Grass Pokémon to help match your opponent’s hand.
2 Muk: Sludge Drag is the key. Many decks have Pokémon with a Retreat Cost of two or more. Sludge Drag lets you bring that Pokémon active and poison and confuse it. If your opponent can’t retreat, you can snipe over that Pokémon with Yanmega while allowing them to get Knocked Out by poison in however many turns it takes. Sludge Drag also prevents many Pokémon from using their Poké-powers. Two Muk are played because you need to have Muk in your Lost Zone, practically every game.
2 Jumpluff: After getting Jumpluff into your Lost Zone, you can use Mass Attack or Leaf Guard off Mew for just one Grass or Rainbow Energy. Mass attack can do up to 120 damage, great for knocking Pokémon out. Leaf Guard has many uses, but one notable use is using Leaf Guard against Tornadus, then following up with Mass Attack. Tornadus cannot Knock Out a 60 HP Mew with Hurricane after you use Leaf Guard. Two Jumpluff are played for consistency.
1 Cleffa: If you open with a terrible hand, but you have a Pokémon Communication and a Pokémon, a Pokémon Collector, or Cleffa itself, you still have a shot at winning the game. You don’t want to draw your first seven cards and lose because you can’t get a better hand, Cleffa offers you that way out of the bad hand and into a fresh start.
4 Collector: Standard, you need to get your basics out. Your first Collector you should generally get a Mew Prime and two Oddish, depending on what you start with, but Sunflora and Yanmega Prime are not as important as the turn 1 “See Off” or the turn 2 Vileplume.
4 Twins: Twins is the best Supporter in the deck. As soon as one of your Pokémon is Knocked Out, you can play Twins and Search for whatever two cards you may need. Typically, you might get a Rare Candy and Vileplume or Energy for Mew Prime. Playing less than four of these would be ill-advised.
4 Judge: Great for disruption, shuffling in your bad hand and getting four new cards, or for matching your opponent’s hand size. I’d say that Judge is superior to Copycat.
4 Copycat: Good for matching your opponent’s hand size. Having hand refreshers is never a bad call either, you want plenty of shuffle and draw Supporters.
4 Pokémon Communication: Pokémon Communication is great for getting out your evolutions. After you set up Vileplume, these become obsolete, so use them while you can. It is also a great Cleffa search card if you have a bad hand. Every time I lowered these to a count of three, I wished that whatever card I had put in was the fourth Pokémon Communication instead.
3 Rare Candy: You’ll probably only use one of these in a game at most, but you need them in order to set up Vileplume as quickly as possible.
4 Rainbow: Mew Prime already has only 60 HP, 10 less is not that big of a deal. Playing four Rainbow is like playing 7 Grass and 9 Psychic in a way. You have more options for that turn 1 “See Off,” but will rarely be losing because you can’t get the Energy you need for Mass Attack. Versatility is a great concept to incorporate into a Pokémon deck.
5 Psychic: Provide Energy for Sludge Drag and are necessary for the quickest “See Off” possible.
3 Grass: Provide Energy for Mass Attack and Leaf Guard. They can fuel Yanmega Prime’s attacks too when necessary.
There you have it. When setting up, you typically want to get the quickest “See Off” possible for Muk, and then set up Vileplume as soon as possible as well. If your opponent takes a quick prize, that means that you can just play Twins and set up quick as a flash.
Now for an analysis of some of the major matchups.
Gothitelle/Reuniclus: 80/20 Mewlock’s Favor
In this matchup, Jumpluff is the key. You may still want to “See Off” a Muk as well, but definitely “See Off” Jumpluff. Mass Attack from Mew Prime on a Gothitelle will be a 1HKO even if they have no benched Pokémon. Their Trainer lock doesn’t really affect you all that much, but your Trainer lock will hurt them pretty bad.
At the end of the day, trading off a Mew Prime with one Energy for a Gothitelle with at least three is in your favor every time. This is a pretty easy matchup.
Typhlosion/Reshiram: 50/50 Even
pokebeach.comThis matchup is pretty even. If they play just one Quilava, you should have a pretty easy time winning, but if they play three, then it’s not easy at all. See Off a Muk early, and get out Vileplume ASAP. Sludge Drag on Typhlosion shuts off their power as well as forcing them to retreat. If they get out two Typhlosions, Sludge Drag a Reshiram with no energy instead to force them to either power it up and flip into confusion or attach two energy to retreat and then have to power up the other Reshiram to attack with.
If they get out three Tyhplosions, your best shot is to Mass Attack every Reshiram and Knock them Out. If you can run them out of Reshirams, you have a chance at Knocking Out Typhlosions with Yanmegas for your last Prize cards.
You can also Linear Attack Cyndaquils early if you have out Vileplume forcing them to evolve two Cyndaquil at once if they plan to get out Typhlosion, because you can Linear Attack a Quilava with 40 damage from a previous Linear Attack for 40 more damage and Knock it Out.
Magnezone/Yanmega: 60/40 Mewlock’s Favor
This all comes down to whether or not they know the matchup. If they get out a Magnezone at all, you can Sludge Drag it and be at a huge advantage. If they only set up Yanmegas, then you have to attack their Yanmegas with yours, and it just becomes a huge trade-off. You should have the advantage if you can get out Sunflora, because you can use Sunshine Grace to keep your Yanmegas coming.
Leaf Guard with Mew followed by Mass Attack can Knock Out a Yanmega most of the time, so you have 8 possible attackers as opposed to their 4. Matchup is in your favor.
ZPST: 20/80 ZPST’s Favor
This is by far the most difficult matchup. They have Shaymin to use Celebration Wind and retreat if you Sludge Drag, Zekrom with 40 damage 1-shots all of your attackers, and they are very fast. My best advice is just to keep Sludge Dragging and Judging until they run out of Energy, and then switch to Yanmega Prime and Snipe.
Mass attack on a Zekrom with 40 damage can usually Knock it Out, so keep that in mind, and a Leaf Guard on a Tornadus if you have no damage is also a good play.
Stage 1s: 50/50 Even
This matchup can be difficult or not so difficult depending on what Pokémon they play and what Pokémon they set up. If they set up Donphan, it is a great Sludge Drag target and can buy you some time to set up knock outs with Linear Attack. Zoroark is not really a threat.
Yanmega versus Yanmega is just a constant battle, but don’t forget about how good Mass Attack can be and always watch your opponent’s bench size. Vileplume is very important seeing as Stage 1s tends to play lots of Trainers.
There are the matchups that I have based off of my experience playing in Fall Battle Roads this year. All in all, I feel that Mew is a good deck with lots of tricks and would be a great play for Regionals in November. Just remember, if you take nothing else away from this article, my words of advice are “Consistency is the key.”
Thanks for reading, and I’ll take constructive criticism to heart. This is just my first article for SixPrizes, but I look forward to writing more articles in the future.