Hello, and welcome to a (hopefully) exciting Nationals report! You may know I really don’t like long intros, so I’ll get straight to the point: I’m a Senior from the UK (gee, that’s a good way to start an article on Pokémon website comprised mostly of Masters playing in a US metagame) and this was my second National Championships.
There were 39 Seniors with 6 single game, 30 minute rounds and a Top 8 cut. I was playing Quad Terrakion because it is what I felt most comfortable with (and it’s the only deck I had built at the time). My achievements in three years of playing Pokémon include:
- 4 Victories at Battle Roads
- 1 Victory at Cites
- 1 Top 4 at Regionals
- Bending my middle and ring fingers back at the top joint
Not very impressive, I know (except the last one), but I only started to become a truly competitive player recently. Well hopefully this article make my Poké-resume far more impressive…
I’m only going to list my Pokémon and Energy lines, as I may play a similar deck at worlds.
Pokémon – 5
Trainers – 43
Energy – 12
Shocking, isn’t it? Onto the report!
Dan w/ VVVRound 1 VS
pokemon-paradijs.comOk, so round 1. I get paired against one of my worst possible matchups, VVV (with Bel-awesome and Slippery Soles Vanilluxe). I know I’ll need to donk with Mewtwo, or hope for both his Vileplume to be prized or… Well… Umm… It’s a very bad matchup.
I start well, with Mewtwo and DCE in my opening hand, but fail to find a Supporter, Catcher or Random Receiver on my first turn, forcing me to KO his active Vanillite (he had attached Rescue Energy) letting him set Vileplume up on turn two with Twins.
The next turn he also gets a Vanilluxe out and starts attacking with Double Freeze. I can only attach and pass while he sets up everything he needs and proceeds to sweep. I lose having only taken 3 Prizes, which is a shame, because if he had only flipped 28 consecutive tails I would have won easily…
Well, that wasn’t very good… Ah well, at least I’ll be paired against someone who also lost their first game, so it should be an easier ride. Oh, what’s this? I’ve been up-paired?
Round 2 VS ??? (Maybe Nathan?) w/ Hammertime
My apologies, I can’t seem to remember names at all in rounds 2 or 3… I can remember the deck fine, but not their owners. (If you did play me in rounds 2 or 3, be sure to tell an editor your name. I’m sure they’ll fix it.) Anyway, I was dreading the Hammertime matchup. (Well, Crushing Hammer in general actually, but this guy especially as he was 1-0.) But it actually turned out to be a pretty funny game.
I start with Terrakion while he starts triple Darkrai, with me taking a quick prize from a Smeargle, and him quickly stripping me of all Energy the turn afterward and using Sableye to retrieve his Hammers. This continued for several turns, when suddenly it happened. We both just stop drawing anything we need. Seriously, no energy to attack, no supporters to get a new hand, no switch to retreat… Nothing.
We just sat there, draw passing for way longer than we should ever have to when he finally used an N, which, on top of some key misplays on his part with Eviolite and Energy drops was all I needed to start to sweep everything he had with Land Crush. He only took 1 Prize.
Phew, that went better than expected. I guess Hammertime might be a easier matchup than I thought.
Round 3 VS ??? (Also Maybe Nathan) w/ Shaymin EX, Terrakion, Darkrai EX and I think Mewtwo EX (And More)
pokemon-paradijs.comThere is not much to say about this game really, we both set up at a reasonable pace, I Catcher’d and KO’d a Darkrai, got rid of some of his Energy with Crushing Hammer and Lost Remover and simply swept from there.
What I found strange however, is that despite having a fully charged Shamin EX from early on, which could have netted him 3 Prizes, he didn’t attack with it once; instead promoting a Cleffa and using Eeeeeeek. (Yes, I know how many “E’s” are in Eeeeeeek off by heart. It’s seven, by the way.) He, like my last opponent, took just the 1 Prize.
I’m very pleased he didn’t use his Shaymin EX that game, as that would have spelled serious trouble for me… Also, around this time my friend LUKE TAYLOR wanted me to mention LUKE TAYLOR’s name at least five times if I wrote an article. Here you go LUKE TAYLOR.
Round 4 VS ??? David w/ Reshiboar
This game was much closer than I thought it would be, with a stream of Reshiram threatening to Outrage if I attacked them, but discarding his DCE (and Fire before he got Emboar out) with Crushing Hammer proved effective enough to swing the game in my favor.
After using Ninetales’ Roast Reveal for about 6 turns in a row, David still couldn’t get an Emboar out, and by the time he did, I had a fully charged Terrakion active, two more on the bench and a Mewtwo with about three energy. After trading a few prizes, I believe I KO’d his Reshiram-EX with Mewtwo* for GG.
*Or maybe I used Pokémon Catcher to bring up his Emboar. I can’t quite remember how I won.
It may sound weird, but Reshiboar was the only close game I was in while playing Swiss. All the rest were a easy-ish win or a horrible loss.
Round 5 Vs Ryan w/ Zeels
This game was horrible, so I’ll just skim over what happened:
I start Mewtwo, draw nothing for 3 turns and get Knocked Out by his Tornadus EX. Sigh…
(On the plus side I sold my playmat to him for £9.00 and, unluckily for him, he also won a playmat in a raffle a few minutes later.)
Well that sucked… Oh well, I made £9 and can still make cut if I win my next game.
Round 6 VS Duncan (I think that’s your name…) w/ Dark.dec
pokemon-paradijs.comThis round went pretty much how you would expect it to, I discard and Lost Zone his Special D Energies, KO his Darkrai and on the turns he can’t get a KO, I use a 30 damage Retaliate to KO his 50 and 60 HP Basics. He managed to take a few prizes with both Zoroark BLW and Zoroark DEX, but overall couldn’t keep up a steady stream of attackers to take on my Terrakion or Claw Snags to disrupt my hand. I soon take the win without too much hassle.
As me and some other Seniors that are on 4-2 wait nervously for the results, we figure out that 5-of us will make it into cut. I’m quite confident, because my two losses were on 6-0 (VVV) and 4-2 (Zeels). The results were as follows: (In no particular order, I just scrambled the names of the final standings.)
- Philip Rowley w/ Darkrai EX variant (I think it was Hammertime)
- Vlad J w/ Darkrai EX/Tornadus EX/Terrakion
- Rhys Williams w/ Raikou-EX/Eelectrik
- Sam Marshall-Smith w/ Quad Terrakion
- Jack O w/ Darkrai EX variant (I think)
- Ryan Moorhouse w/ Zeels
- Danny Martin w/ VVV
- Dan S w/ VVV
Sorry LUKE TAYLOR, resistance was not on your side…
Top 8 VS Vlad w/ Darkrai Tornadus Terrakion
pokemon-paradijs.comThis was the only “real” game we played as the other two were kind of ridiculous. We both start well and start trading prizes quickly, with him KOing my Terrakion with his own Eviolited Terrakion, and me picking off his Shaymin and Smeargle on the bench with Pokémon Catcher. I managed to take an early lead thanks to a Catcher + PlusPower KO on an Eviolited Darkrai which he put down to retreat his Terrakion.
Vlad soon builds a Tornadus EX with three basic Energy and an Eviolite, forcing me to snipe around it, or try to 4HKO it… I had no Pokémon Catcher or Junk Arm in my hand, which meant I had to attack it four times to win. Three 50 damage attacks later, he retreated it to the bench…
And used Max Potion.
Right. Ok then. Fine. I’m no longer able to take my last 2 Prizes, and Vlad is two Power Blasts away from taking his last one… So I KO the Smeargle (I think it was that) he promoted, which left us at 1 Prize each. After thinking for a while, he promotes Tornadus, leaving his board with an active, no energy or damage Tornadus EX with Eviolite and a Benched Terrakion with two energy and two damage.
Now here’s where he makes the misplay that cost him the match: He plays down Shaymin, shifts both Terrakion’s Energy to Tornadus EX, attaches an Energy and hits me for 100. On my turn I simply Junk Arm for Pokémon Catcher and KO his poor Shaymin for game.
This game was quite painful, so I won’t go into much detail. Basically I drew no Terrakion or Heavy Ball for ages while he gets out a quick Tornadus EX and proceeds to get ALL the heads on Power Blast flips while I got ALL the tails on Crushing Hammer flips. I was always two steps behind this game and he eventually he just runs me out of Pokémon to put down and I lose.
This game was just ridiculous. I start Mewtwo EX to his Tornadus EX start, and go first. I topdeck Terrakion, play it down and use Switch to get Mewtwo EX out of immediate danger, attach and pass. On his turn he simply attaches and passes. This continues for several turns, and each time he gets two Energy on his Tornadus I Crushing Hammer one off. When I got Tornadus EX down to KO range, he used Max Potion to heal 110 damage off.
Eventually however, he gets all three Energy and starts Power Blasting each turn, and I was starting to run out of Terrakion to promote. He then plays down a Darkrai and tries to take it back but, you know, Top 8 at Nats and all. Finally, time is called and, after his 10th or so turn of having no Supporters, I kinda take pity on him and use N, but missed the Catcher I needed to KO Darkrai.
He then drags up Mewtwo EX and I have a feeling he can KO it next turn with his own, but I only have one Junk Arm in my hand, meaning I could only use Switch OR Catcher, both of which I needed for a guaranteed win… So it all came down to the Super Scoop Up in my hand. I flip and… HEADS!!! I pick up Mewtwo EX, then Catcher and KO Darkrai for game. GG
That round was was intense… I was delighted to hear that both VVV had been taken out in their first round (one because they simply forgot to announce Victory Star on the turn they would have won). Well that’s two bullets dodged! Onto Top 4!
Top 4 VS Ryan w/ Zeels (again)
I’m cursed against this guy. Seriously. Both (Spoiler alert!) these games were absolutely ridiculous, and the same thing happened in both of them, so I’ll condense two games into one, as it would make for a very boring read otherwise. I start Terrakion and get no other Pokémon or Heavy Ball until it’s waaaaay too late. He KOs everything on my field with Tornadus EX for a very quick Game 1 and 2.
So it turns out I got 3rd, which is kind of bittersweet because as great as getting third is, I simply could not afford a trip to Hawaii to use my invite… Then something incredible happened:
I got a pass down…
en.wikipedia.orgNow, for those of you who don’t know what that is (like me, a few days ago), you get a pass down when the person who finished ahead of you can’t use their invite or, in my case, paid trip. I’m totally serious. And very happy.
You see, the (amazingly kind) Philip Rowley who got 2nd place had already booked a holiday to Egypt on the days that Worlds take place on, so 20 minutes of phone calls and paperwork later I was holding the forms that would grant me a paid trip to Hawaii! Thank you. Thank you so much.
And before I forget, the Top 4 looked like this:
1st – Ryan Moorhouse w/ Zeel
2nd – Outrageously kind player with w/ Darkrai vairiant
3rd – Sam Marshall-Smith w/ Quad Terrakion
4th – Rhys Williams w/ Raikou/Eelectrik
- Losing my deck, playmat and spare sleeves and them all being handed in
- Fun times
- I’m going to Worlds!!! =D
- Everything else pretty much =)
- LUKE TAYLOR (Happy?)
- PA-thingy was set to ear nuke volume
- Being cursed in Top 4
I hope you have enjoyed this article and to all of you attending Worlds, come and say hi! (I’ll be the sunburnt guy slumped by an air conditioner.) See you There!