Brothers in Battle Roads: Interstate Top 4 Reports
When I googled for an image to go with this, I never expected to find something this good.

I’m back, well, not back. I’m actually gone. Gone away from home, matriculating on a journey of self-discovery, education, and debauchery.

Also, college. That’s basically what I’m trying to say. Sophomore year, Mrs. Bockewitz did once say I wrote too much to say too little.

Hey, how does anyone say anything about The Scarlet Letter? What an awful book. Anyway, I must be getting my moneys worth here at Michigan State University. I know because I didn’t have to use spell-check on ‘matriculating’ or ‘debauchery.’ You may remember me from writing this. If you haven’t read it yet, I suggest you do.

Life has been good to me. I’m majoring in Media and Information and I couldn’t possibly imagine changing majors. I was considering Wambology, the study of Wambo, for a bit, but I decided on M&I. All of my classes are engaging and enlightening. Except for my writing class. I really should have taken the AP test in high school to get out of that one. (I won’t go into it due to the risk of sounding pompous and mildly racist against Chinese teachers.)

I was blessed enough to get an amazing job with The Big Ten Network, even though sports broadcasting isn’t the facet of telecommunications I’m most interested in, it’s amazing experience. The work isn’t very hard, I mean, it probably is, but it’s fun so not really. I actually taught my roommate how to play Pokémon the other day and built him a Rayquaza EX Zeels deck… without Catchers or enough N and Juniper.

I’m the Hitmonchan and my roommate is the Primeape. I haven’t lost yet.

He’s going a little stir crazy here. He watches a lot of chess documentaries, says he’s going to become a Grandmaster one day. I took chess lessons for years. Bad memories. But, actually, I discovered what Spongebob was during chess lessons. I rescind my previous bad memories sentence. My roommate is a cool guy, but not like the bro alcohol-o-trons nextdoor. They play so much loud Gangnam Style… and the stench of, uh, nevermind.

Anyway, I have another tale of Pokémon success, this time with my brother. A junior in high school, Ben.

“Yo, what up, guys?”

Ho ho ho, I think I’ll do the talking here, Ben. How about you just sum up your rounds? On to the report, complete with all 12 names of our opponents. Groundbreaking, I know.

Ben’s Zekrom/Eelektrik – 9/29 Oswego, IL Battle Road

Pokémon – 11

2 Tynamo DEX 45

2 Tynamo NVI 38

3 Eelektrik NVI 40

2 Mewtwo-EX NXD

2 Zekrom-EX

Trainers – 35

4 Professor Juniper

4 N

2 Cheren

2 Bianca


4 Pokémon Catcher

4 Ultra Ball

3 Switch

3 Level Ball

2 Eviolite

2 Super Scoop Up

1 Max Potion

1 Tool Scrapper

1 Super Rod


2 Skyarrow Bridge

Energy – 14

10 L

4 Double Colorless

Sam’s Terrakion NVI/Terrakion-EX/Mewtwo EX – 9/29 Okemos, MI Battle Road

Pokémon – 7

3 Terrakion NVI

3 Mewtwo-EX NXD

1 Terrakion-EX

Trainers – 39

4 Professor Juniper

4 N

3 Bianca

2 Random Receiver


4 Catcher

4 Switch

4 Ultra Ball

4 PlusPower

3 Energy Switch

2 Heavy Ball

2 Exp. Share

2 Super Scoop Up

1 Energy Retrieval

Energy – 14

10 F

4 Double Colorless

Round 1 Ben vs. Jeremy (Zeels)

He mulligans twice and I draw into a DCE and win the flip. I start Mewtwo to his Tynamo and… donk.


Round 1 Sam vs. Chris (Modified Reshiram Starter Deck)
Little did he expect I wasn’t passing for 4 turns because I had no energy, rather I just wanted him to able to take some prizes with Brave Fire.

This was Chris’ first tournament and he only started playing last month. Not a very eventful match, but nice to talk to him. I give him some advice and steered him in the direction of Emboar for his deck in the future.

… look, it’s not a bad card.


Round 2 Ben vs. Steven (Zeels)

I start with Zekrom-EX and Tynamo on my bench. He mulligans twice and I draw into a Mewtwo EX and lay that down on the bench as well. I win the flip and I topdeck the DCE. Oh gosh, it’s happening again. I attach the Double Colorless to Mewtwo and play N. I draw into the Switch and donk for the 2nd game in a row.


Round 2 Sam vs. Jared (Ho-Oh EX/Terrakion NVI/Mewtwo EX/Registeel-EX/Tornadus EX)

We both start Mewtwo and he wins the flip. He goes agressive and attaches a DCE to his Mewtwo, but before he hits me for 80 he plays N, taking away my DCE and PlusPower. If he hadn’t played that N it would have been a very different game. I don’t draw into any Supporters and the game is downhill from there. He hits a Rebirth on his 2nd turn and steamrolls me. I finally topdeck Random Receiver four turns later but only get a Bianca for 2. I lose 4-0.

Also, my brother texts me that he’s playing all EX attackers. This is before his tournament started because Illinois is an hour behind Michigan. I say, “What about Sigilyph DRX?” He doesn’t text back, but that’s to be expected.


Ben. Fearlessly stalwart as his Tynamo stares down a Mewtwo.

Round 3 Ben vs. David (Darkrai Hydreigon)

I start Tynamo and lose the flip. He starts Mewtwo. But he doesn’t play DCE in that deck.

Take that, karma.

He does attach to his Mewtwo for two turns in a row to take out my Tynamo. Which was good for me because I get out an Eel and attach DCE and take out his Mewtwo. I’m able to set up Eels quickly and have a Double Colorless to attach to Mewtwo for three straight turns. 4 Dynamotors later I have a 10 Energy Mewtwo and begin to bowl him over. He doesn’t play Sigilyph. That card could actually be a huge problem…


Round 3 Sam vs. JW (Mewtwo Zeels)

The 4 Mewtwo dream made possible thanks in no small part to TinTwo.

Funnily enough, JW is the number 1 ranked player in the state of Michigan. He plays at our Michigan State University league. Usually he plays Empoleon, but today he was playing Eels with 4 Mewtwo. He goes first with a Zekrom-EX active. He attaches and gets out some Tynamos, but not before N’ing me into a great hand. I’m able to attach DCE to my Mewtwo and catcher up a Tynamo for the KO. He attaches and passes. I’m able to catcher another Tynamo and KO it.

The big turning point in this game was this turn when he attaches DCE to his Zekrom-EX, but intstead of using Strong Volt he attacks with Glinting Claw, hitting me for 80. I try to Super Scoop Up my Mewtwo, but I miss (I actually didn’t get a single heads on SSU all day, that card was promptly cut out afterward).

Luckily I do get tails because I notice a big play. I attach another DCE to my active Mewtwo and Energy Switch the Fighting I attached to Terrakion last turn and hit Zekrom-EX for 180 and 2 Prizes. From there he KOs my Mewtwo with his, but I have the DCE and PlusPower for game.


I think I just beat the two-time World Champion.

Round 4 Ben vs. Jason Klaczynski (Hammertime Darkrai/Sableye)

I start Mewtwo and Tynamo to his 2 Sableye. I get Eels out quickly and start attaching to Mewtwo. With the help of Eels and the fact that he only plays one Crushing Hammer the whole game, I’m able to power it up rapidly. He’s able to play a lot of catchers and Knocks Out two Eels and Tynamo in two turns. But because he spend those two turns attacking my Eels, my eviolited Mewtwo is at full health and is 2HKOing his Darkrai.

It’s 2-3 and he has Sableye up and a Darkrai with 2 energy on the bench. He gets heads with Confuse Ray on Mewtwo. I bench Zekrom-EX, but I go for the X Ball with Mewtwo anyway. Luckily, I KO Sableye. Mewtwo has 60 damage on it currently. He hits me with Night Spear, but before he does that he gets the crucial Eviolite for Darkrai. I’m now 3 energy short of 1HKOing Darkrai and winning the game. I retreat into Zekrom-EX, Dynamotor to Mewtwo, and Juniper. I draw a DCE, attach it to Mewtwo and play a Super Scoop Up… heads! I pick out Zekrom-EX and win.


Round 4 Sam vs. Alex (Garbodor DRX/Mewtwo/Terrakion)

pokemon-paradijs.comAlex was another pal from MSU. He lost first round in a nail-biter vs. Empoleon. He goes first and we both start Mewtwo. He attaches DCE and hits me for 80. I’m worried because I have no Supporters in hand and no real way to deal with the Mewtwo. I bench Terrakion and Switch into it. He smartly doesn’t bench any Trubbish the whole game, denying me of easy prizes and enabling him with more bench space. I sit with Terrakion active for a turn and Catcher his Terrakion with no energy.

Now, he’s drawing dead as well, but he doesn’t even have an energy to attach. I KO his Terrakion with mine and he hesitantly decides to send up his Mewtwo and attach to it for the KO. I topdeck the N, play it and draw into a game-changing DCE and take the lead 4-5. He KOs me with his Mewtwo, but I have a DCE and PlusPower for the lead 2-3.

He can’t KO my Mewtwo with his this turn so he promotes Terrakion and hits me for 90. He has one energy on a benched Mewtwo, I Catcher it, attach a Fighting to my Mewtwo and Energy Switch to win 0-3.


Round 5 Ben vs. Cameron (Mewtwo Zeels)

He starts Thundurus to my Zekrom-EX and I win the flip. I relied more on Zekrom-EX this game because I knew he played 3 Mewtwo. Starting turn 2 I’m able to take out Tynamos and I stay up on the prize race. It’s 2-4, I have my second Zekrom-EX active, a benched Mewtwo with one energy, and two Eels. I attach a DCE and Dynamotor to my Mewtwo and Catcher his benched Tynamo.

This was a huge misplay though. if I had Dynamotored once more to Mewtwo and catchered his Mewtwo, I would’ve won then and there, but the game gets painfully close. He gets his revenge with his own Mewtwo (only needed 2 energy), but not before N’ing me to 1. It’s 1-2. I power up Zekrom-EX with my two eels and hit his Mewtwo with Glinting Claw. On his turn he Catchers my Eel and benches a Raikou. He can’t Volt Bolt yet, but it’s a huge threat.

I can’t retreat again this turn and pass, he Volt Bolts a benched Eel to bring it down to the 1-1 wire. I draw into Cheren and draw 3 cards and get a Catcher, but I don’t play it yet. I don’t think he can pull of a Volt Bolt this turn, and he shouldn’t be able to hit for 100 with Mewtwo either. He attacks me for 40 while he powers up Raikou. On my turn I draw the Switch, switch into Zekrom-EX, Catcher his last Eel and Strong Volt for the win.


Round 5 Sam vs. Zac (Raikou Terrakion Zeels)

pokemon-paradijs.comThis game was a blast to play – as Zac was quite the chum. His opening hand was devoid of supporters so all he could do was attach to his Raikou and search out some Tynamos. This was the first game I was able to use Terrakion-EX to his potential – when I began powering him up in previous games, the first thing my opponent did was get their Mewtwo ready and at that point utilizing my own Mewtwos was a more effective strategy than attacking with Terrakion-EX.

I searched out Terrakion-EX and attached. I’m able to take out a Tynamo on my 2nd turn with Rock Tumble, he leaves a Terrakion active with 1 fighting. I attach the 3rd fighting and catcher his Raikou, taking the 3 Prize lead and attaching extra fighting from my hand. He Retailiates for 90.

This is where Terrakion-EX, or any EX really, falls shorts without Eviolite. I just hit for 90 and I get KO’d next turn. I have a Terrakion NVI to take down his, though. I think he only drew 1 or 2 Supporters the whole game so the remainder was rather uneventful.

Not a certified Sigilyph counter.

Round 6 Ben vs. Ricky (Darkrai Hydreigon)

I’m like, “What the heck, how am I 5-0?” I’m facing the guy who won Rockford’s BR last week. I start Zekrom-EX with a Tynamo. He starts Sabeleye and Deino. I win the flip, but looks like I won’t be donking my way to 6-0. We both set up well. Turn 2 I hit heads on Glinting Claw for the KO on Sableye. He brings up Darkrai, but I have Eviolite to prevent the 2HKO. He gets out Hydreigon 3rd turn while I’m powering up a benched Mewtwo. I’m able to catcher Hydreigon and Strong Volt it though. He return KOs my Zekrom-EX with Darkrai.

4-4, I send up Mewtwo and hit Darkrai setting it up for the 2HKO, but my Mewtwo wasn’t Eviolited. He hits me back, I KO him, he KOs me. 2-2. I send up Zekrom-EX, Max Potion an Eel to save it from the 30 from Night Spear. I only have energy to Glinting Claw this turn — this is a huge flip. The Darkrai was Eviolited so if I got tails it would hit for 30 and with the Strong Volt 130, I’d be 20 short of the KO. I breathe a sigh of relief as I see the merciful 2 come up on the die.

His turn, he benches a Deino and searches out… a Sigilyph. Uh-oh. I’m forced to attack with my Eel for a turn, he hits me but only deals 80. On my turn I KO the Sigilyph. He Junipers and draws into Rare Candy, Hydreigon, and Max Potion. He sends up the newly healed Darkrai to KO my Eel.

This is still winnable for me, I Strong Volt for 130. And he hits me for 70, one Night Spear away from getting KO’d. If I just draw an energy I have a 50% chance of winning… nope, no energy, that’s game.


Round 6 Sam vs. David (Ho-Oh Terrakion Tornadus EX Mewtwo Sigilyph)
I just had to use this again. It would have made sense for Ben’s Round 3, but I think the picture of Jason K is probably better suted… haha, look how startled that hammerhead is!

He we go, final round. Luckily for me, the Hammertime player lost his previous round so I don’t have any chance to play him. Ho-Oh is a very difficult matchup for this deck, though. Tornadus and Ho-Oh both resist Fighting, with Eviolite piled on up for -40, I’m essentially forced to attack with Mewtwo, but they also play their own Mewtwo.

He starts Terrakion to my Terrakion-EX, first time today I started with Terrakion-EX and what a time to do it. He was a great asset, helping me rapidly power up my benched Mewtwos. Also, on my 2nd or 3rd turn I’m able to make a huge play where I Catcher his benched Mewtwo with DCE, Switch into my Mewtwo with DCE, I Juniper and get the PlusPower.

Much to my chagrin, he plays down a Sigilyph, forcing me to begin powering up a Terrakion and eventually making me play a 7 Prize game. I take out Sigilyph with Terrakion and he takes out Terrakion with Tornadus EX. I have prized my last Terrakion and he plays down another Sigilyph, which is a huge concern, especially since he Catchers my last Terrakion NVI and hits it with Tornadus EX.

He N’s me down to 1 and I topdeck Juniper, thank God. I draw the Switch to get Terrakion out of there and hit Tornadus for 100 with Mewtwo. He plays a Random Receiver and reveals every card in his 9-10 card deck, no Supporters left. He plays a Bianca for 6, he needs to draw his last DCE and Catcher to KO Terrakion with Sigilyph this turn.

If he can do that, he’s forcing me to draw my only remaining Catcher before I lose the game to a Sigilyph I can’t KO. He gets the DCE, but no Catcher. He retreats into Ho-Oh and hits Mewtwo. I play my Juniper, draw my last Catcher and KO the damaged Tornadus EX for the 0-3 victory.



  • Brothers 5-1ing, both our losses were to the 1st place players at our respective BRs.
  • First time Ben’s ever finished with a positive record.
  • I only got to go to 2 BRs, 4-2 7th at the first but I wanted to Top 4, wish granted.
  • I hate McDonald’s, unless they have Monopoly.
  • The Michigan State team ate at McDonald’s, but it was OK because there was Monopoly.
  • Got to eat somewhere that didn’t serve campus cafeteria food.
  • Campus food is actually quite delicious, it’s just that it gets old eating the same thing.
  • I think that can be interpreted as a metaphor for my life.
  • After I beat JW, he bought a pack and pulled a Shiny Rayquaza, he was the real victor.
  • Ben not only built his deck the morning of, but at 5 AM before a cross country meet and then took it to the BR immediately after.
  • Regionals is in less than a week and Ben, our dad, and I are all going.
  • I’m very excited, especially since there will be actual restaurants there.


  • McDonald’s no longer serves blueberry oatmeal. “In my day, oatmeal was just oat and meal.”

I’ll leave you with this:

Reader Interactions

7 replies

  1. kazambolt

    You made our game sound a lot closer than it was haha, I basically dead drew the whole time.

  2. Alex Hedge

    I would list one report, then the other right afterwards. It looks weird when you intertwine them.

  3. Jared

    Didn’t know it was you were the one doing these articles, great read and nice playing you man. I posted my first report over on

  4. Ben Salvador

    for the record ben got 2nd place, and i finish 3-2 before

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