Night Spearing the ECC: A Top 32 Report with Darkrai/Mewtwo

swanna-black-white-blw-37pokemon-paradijs.com
Like Swanna, but with a T, and no “na”

Welcome to my tournament report of the ECC! Since this is my first article on SixPrizes, I will introduce myself. My name is Twan (pronounced like “swan,” but with a T), I am 17 years old, and I live in the small country that is the Netherlands.

I started playing competitively at the beginning of this season’s Autumn Regionals and so far I have been enjoying every single tournament. Still reading? Good!

It is really nice for a new player like me to live a small country like the Netherlands, since it takes less time to travel to tournaments.

So far, this season has been pretty good for me. Right now I am sitting at 181 Championship Points (not including my result at the ECC) and my biggest achievements so far were placing 5th in a Autumn Regionals with Darkrai EX/Hydreigon DRX 97 and a Cities victory with Landorus-EX/Mewtwo EX/Tornadus EX.

This is mainly because I started playing half a year after I started looking into Pokémon. I have learned the most from reading here on SixPrizes and watching videos from The Top Cut. In videos from The Top Cut, they analyze why a player plays a certain card and how it can influence the game state and you learn a lot from it.

So for any new players out there wanting to get in and play, reading here on SixPrizes and watching Pokémon videos from the Top Cut will actually improve your game a lot.

Cities has been over for a while now and everyone is moving on with the new set, Plasma Storm, being out, but here in Europe we had one more tournament in the BLW–BCR format: the ECC. For those who don’t know, the ECC stands for the European Challenge Cup and is hosted every year in the Netherlands.

Even though this is my first competitive season I wanted to attend the ECC just to feel the atmosphere of a large scale tournament, larger than we usually have in the Netherlands (or in Europe).

keldeo ex 142 boundaries crossed bcr full art
Keldeo forced me to “pony” up and play a different deck.

Initially, I wanted to go with my deck that won me a Cities, Landorus-EX/Mewtwo EX/Tornadus EX. However I let go of that thought pretty quickly when I heard there was a Cities with a Top 4 only consisting of Blastoise/Keldeo.

Keldeo-EX is the deck’s biggest weakness and playing against your worst matchup all day long isn’t something that brings good results.

This meant I would need something else to play and I was keen to returning to Darkrai/Hydreigon since I was familiar with the deck, but I felt it was a bit too slow in the Keldeo matchup while it also had some other bad matchups.

One particular day, I was talking with a fellow Dutch player, Mekkah (who also helped me get in the competitive scene), about decks that have a decent shot against Blastoise/Keldeo while still having good matchups overall and he told me that Darkrai/Mewtwo/Bouffalant and RayEels were decks that could reliably beat Keldeo.

Since I didn’t have all the cards for RayEels, I started building Darkrai/Mewtwo and began testing to see if it would fit me. I had some knowledge with Darkrai decks and after testing a little with it. In the end, I decided to run it at the ECC.

Basically Darkrai/Mewtwo had a good matchup against Keldeo and decent matchups against the other decks who could beat Keldeo. I wasn’t expecting many Landorus-EX variants mainly because of the rise of the pony, so the deck would be a good choice overall. On to the tournament!

The Tournament

My dad drove me to the tournament on a cold Saturday morning and we arrived there without any delays. The tournament was held in a sports hall and it was really crowded already. There was a giant Gengar and a giant Pikachu mascot suit in the room and it all felt like a real Pokémon tournament. I waited with entering my decklist since someone would bring a Computer Search and a Bouffalant DRX for me.

Unfortunately, he arrived a little late so I altered my list at the final minute and handed it in.
Since the format will change rapidly with the release of Plasma Storm I am fine with giving my list. Here is the list that I used for the tournament:

Pokémon – 10

3 Darkrai-EX DEX
3 Mewtwo-EX NXD
3 Sableye DEX
1 Bouffalant DRX

Trainers – 37

4 Professor Juniper
4 N
3 Bianca
1 Cheren
2 Random Receiver

 

4 Ultra Ball
4 Pokémon Catcher
4 Dark Patch
4 Energy Switch
2 Eviolite
2 PlusPower
1 Energy Search
1 Tool Scrapper

1 Gold Potion

Energy – 13

9 D – Basic
4 Double Colorless

Some Info on the List

computer search boundaries crossed 137
Would it have made a difference? Read on to find out.

Most of the list is really straightforward for a Darkrai/Mewtwo variant as I wanted it to be as consistent as possible while leaving some room for techs. I was planning to run 2 Bouffalant and 2 Sableye, but I only had one Bouffalant available to me.

I was going to run Computer Search and a Max Potion but in the end I had to change to an extra Bianca and Gold Potion. The Cheren was pretty random and it should have been another Random Receiver.

The biggest inclusions where the 2 PlusPowers. I originally had 2 Dark Claw there but I changed it the night before. The reasoning is that I would attack with Mewtwo EX often and we all know that PlusPower is a key to winning the Mewtwo war, since it forces your opponent to respond with a 3 Energy Mewtwo, which is harder to pull off.

It can also help with other instances, where you Night Spear an Eviolited Darkrai who had 30 on it already. That leaves it at 80 HP, which is another Night Spear with a PlusPower. Even though this is easily remedied with Dark Claw, again the aid in the Mewtwo war was too good to pass up.


There were 249 Masters in the tournament and it was a 2-day event. I know that in the US, there are Regionals bigger than this but for us European players this is huge. This many Masters meant we had 8 Rounds of Swiss and a Top 32 on the second day, missing out on 9 Swiss rounds by just 7 Masters. This meant some 6-2’s would miss cut on resistance, so you needed to go 7-1 to guarantee cut.

This report will be by memory, so I will most like forget most names. Sorry about that! For reference, I was the guy with the striped shirt and a Gengar plushy as a mascot playing Darkrai/Mewtwo so if anyone who reads this played against me, you can tell me your name.

Round 1 vs. A guy from France (Empoleon DEX/Dusknoir BCR/Mewtwo EX)

My first round was versus a nice guy from France who’s name I cannot remember. We had some nice jokes before we started since one of his friend sat next to him and he had painted the flag of France of his cheek. I lost the flip and the ECC began!

I believe he started with Piplup and he got another Piplup and 2 Roselias out on turn 1. I started Sableye. In the first few turns we both set up and he got an Attack Command off before I could attack. I use Gold Potion to heal my active Darkrai and start Night Spearing. I quickly Catcher a Duskull he just benched and killed it. From there I proceeded to get ahead in Prizes since he is struggling to get an attack off.

Then there was this critical point in the end of the match where I was at 2 Prizes and he was at 3. There was no damage on his Mewtwo EX and 60 damage on an Empoleon. On my side of the field I had an Eviolited Darkrai with 110 damage and a clean Eviolited Darkrai ready to go. He got a Dusknoir out, but miscalculated how many damage my active Eviolited Darkrai should have to get Knocked Out.

It turned out that he couldn’t knock my Darkrai out whatsoever since I had 110 damage on my Darkrai and the most he could do was 60 damage (either with Attack Command or X Ball). This meant I could Night Spear his Mewtwo EX, putting 30 on a Piplup, effectively locking the game up, since he couldn’t attack with Mewtwo nor with Empoleon as I could Night Spear for 2 Prizes.

He then retreated his Mewtwo EX and promoted his Piplup with a Water attached to Fury Attack my Darkrai with 10 HP left. He got the first 2 heads but missed the last one so my Darkrai EX lived and I had Catcher in hand for the game. The Fury Attack miss didn’t matter in the end, since he had 3 Prizes left, but it was funny nonetheless.

1-0

Round 2 vs. David Hochmann (Germany) (Darkrai EX/Mewtwo EX)

dark-claw-dark-explorers-dex-92pokemon-paradijs.com
I guess you could say he “clawed” his way back into the game.

So I am sitting at 1-0 and I am playing the mirror. The mirror can usually go 2 ways, one being Darkrai and Bouffalant hitting at each other and the other being the Mewtwo war. I go second.

He got a turn 3 Night Spear off while I managed to do the same. At one point he was able to take out one of my Mewtwos with a 4 Energy Mewtwo (the Mewtwo had 30 on it from Night Spear). I wasn’t able to respond with my own Mewtwo but I did kill it with two Night Spears.

Then he proceeds to Night Spear my Eviolited Darkrai for 90, since he attached a Dark Claw. I managed to Tool Scrapper it away and N’d us both to 2 cards.

I Night Spear, almost being able to mount the comeback, but he topdecks his second Dark Claw for the game.

1-1

It is funny how you can remember a lot more from a win than a loss. We had a one hour lunch break (which is too long in my opinion) and I ate something together with Mekkah, who was sitting at 1-1 as well. Being 1-1 I knew I had to do well to make the Top Cut.

Round 3 vs. Niklas Lehnert-Rappel (Germany) (Blastoise BCR/Keldeo-EX)

I am sorry that I forgot your name, I really should have written it down during the rounds.
Anyway I draw my opening hand and this is what I get: Sableye, Dark Patch, Dark Patch, Ultra Ball, D Energy, D Energy, and Random Receiver. He also mulligans twice which showed me he was playing Blastoise/Keldeo. I get an Eviolite and a Bianca as extra cards AND I get to go first.

I draw the top card of my deck and it is another D Energy. So you are all seeing what is going to happen here.

I Ultra Ball away two Darks for a Darkrai, bench it, double Dark Patch onto it, attach an Eviolite to Darkrai, attach the third dark to Sableye and Bianca for 5. I get the Energy Switch to complete the Turn 1 Night Spear and hit the active Keldeo for 90.

He was just as amazed as me. Staring down a turn 1 Night Spear isn’t fun at all. This was my first ever turn one Night Spear and it really felt like cheating. Needless to say, he didn’t draw much to save him and I swept him with my Darkrai.

2-1

Round 4 vs. Blastoise BCR/Keldeo-EX

This round is actually pretty hazy to me. I do know I get a Turn 2 Night Spear but other than that, I can’t remember much about this game. I think it went down how the matchup usually goes down if the Darkrai player sets up first.

That is that you take the first 2 Prizes with Darkrai and then proceed to start the Mewtwo war and win that way. I apologize for not remembering much about this game. I did win though.

3-1

Round 5 vs. Mewtwo EX/Sigilyph DRX/something else

My mind is completely blank about this person’s name or nationality and I have no idea why. Maybe because this game wasn’t that long. I get to go first. He did have a mulligan which showed me a Garbodor DRX (if memory serves correctly), but it could also be a Gardevoir NXD (even the names sound the same).

sigilyph-dragons-exalted-drx-52-brighterpokemon-paradijs.com
Say hello to Sableye + Bouffalant.

He starts with Sigilyph while I start Sableye. I am able to Ultra Ball for a Darkrai and get 2 Energy in play. I also had a PlusPower in hand and I didn’t really need anything from my discard pile so I used a PlusPower and used Confuse Ray for 20 with Sableye.

While this may seem weird, it allows me to kill Sigilyph with a Bouffalant if I needed to with another PlusPower or another Confuse Ray. On his turn he benches a Mewtwo and attaches a an Energy to it. On my turn I get a second Energy on my Darkrai and Confuse Ray again with Sableye since I didn’t draw a Catcher. This time he KOs my Sableye with a different Mewtwo with DCE attached.

I respond with Mewtwo DCE PlusPower to 1HKO his to regain the lead. He then proceeds to drop another Energy on the Mewtwo with 1 Energy already attached and used PlusPower to get a knockout. From here I didn’t have any PlusPowers anymore so I started to attack with my Eviolited Darkrai, putting 30 on another Mewtwo he just benched. Meanwhile I was also setting up my Bouffalant, in case he wanted to wall with Sigilyph.

He then proceeds to X Ball for 60, I get the knockout of his Mewtwo and he promotes Sigilyph and passes. I retreat to Bouffalant, drop DCE and Catcher his Mewtwo with 60 on it to use Gold Breaker for the game.

4-1

So going 4-1 I was in high spirits and eager to make cut. In this round I face probably one of my worst matchups: Hammertime plus Garbodor DRX.

Round 6 vs. A person from France (Garbodor DRX/Darkrai EX/Hammers)

He gets to go first and at first it seemed like a regular Hammertime deck to me. I had the turn two Night Spear in hand but he hit heads on Crushing hammer to discard the Energy off of my benched Darkrai so I miss it. Then he dropped two Trubbishes and I started to get worried. He started using Night Spear from Turn 5 onwards while I was struggling to get Energy on board.

He Knocks Out a Sableye early in the game and I managed to knock his Darkrai out with my own. Some turns later I was able to kill a Garbodor with a Mewtwo EX, but it had a Rescue Scarf on so I didn’t get rid of the lock. He then proceeded to attack with an Eviolited Darkrai and he hit my Mewtwo for 90.

I think I used Gold Potion here to heal my Mewtwo, but I am not sure about it. I do use Tool Scrapper to get rid of his Eviolite and a Rescue scarf on a Garbodor and Night Spear him back.

He drops another Rescue Scarf on Garbodor and another Eviolite on the Darkrai and then Night Spears my Darkrai. I Night Spear him again, putting his Darkrai at 160 damage. He then kills my Darkrai and gets down to 3 Prizes with me being at 4. The only things I have left are have 2 Mewtwo EX on board with zero Energy.

At this moment I had 3 Catchers in hand, completely forgetting Garbodor also blocks his own Dark Cloak, but I finally realize it and Catcher up the Garbodor and pass.

On his turn time gets called, so he is turn zero. He uses Skyla for a Switch and he Night Spears me with a fresh Darkrai (the damaged one being on the bench). I Catcher his Garbodor up again and attach a Dark to Mewtwo. I also use Ultra Ball to confirm that I have a DCE left in my deck, but no Supporters. I did have Juniper in hand though.

At this point he is turn 2 of time and he uses Random Receiver and flips over his entire deck, showing he has no more Switches and no more Supporters left. He hits heads on a Crushing Hammer to get rid of the Energy on my Mewtwo and uses N and passes.

I got a Juniper off of the N so I used Juniper to draw my entire deck, attach DCE to Mewtwo and Catcher the damaged Darkrai with 3 Energy on it to win the game on time.

5-1

This was a really close game and I was really excited. I was also close of getting into cut, with me having to win the next game to have a good shot at making cut.

Game 7 vs. Gawein Wagner (Netherlands) (Blastoise BCR/Keldeo-EX)

This game was versus a fellow Dutch player, who already had his Worlds invite. Even though I saw him at many of my tournaments, this was the first time I played against him. I get to go first.

The early game is a bit foggy to me but I think it went down like this:

DarkraiEXDarkExplorers63
Night Spear never gets old.

We both have decent fast start with me having a T2 Night Spear and him having a T2 Blastoise. At some point he dropped 3 Energy on the Keldeo to use Secret Sword. I Night Spear him again after benching 2 Mewtwos and almost powering up my second Darkrai. I put the 30 on a Mewtwo.

After my Night Spear he retreated his Keldeo and uses Energy Retrieval get the Energy back and respond with a Secret Sword for 110 with a fresh Keldeo to knockout my Darkrai (afterward he told me he missed the Energy to 1HKO my Mewtwo with his own).

I am able to get my second Darkrai fully powered up and I Catcher the damaged Keldeo for 2 Prizes and put 30 on the other Mewtwo. He then attacks with Blastoise, since he had 2 out, to Knock Out my Darkrai with Hydro Pump. I guess this was to force me to have a Catcher or let me go into the “7 Prize” game. From there he attacked with Blastoise again since I had put 30 on both of his Mewtwo’s and I had another one on the bench.

Here is where things get interesting. We both are at 2 Prizes each not wanting to go Mewtwo yet until we get a 1HKO. He sets up his Mewtwos with 2 Energy each while I had two clean Mewtwos on the bench.

On my turn I had 2 options: either play N, or Juniper. I needed 2 Energy on my Mewtwo, either through DCE or Energy + Energy Swtich, and a Catcher for the game. I used Ultra Ball to find out I had 2-of each Trainer left in a 20 card deck with plenty of Energy.

I go for the Juniper, hit the Energy, hit the Catcher, but whiff the Energy Switch, so I am forced to use Junk Hunt and get 2 Energy Switches back. He then Catcheres my Mewtwo, Junipers and gets 8 Energy on a Keldeo for the game.

5-2

After the game I realized I got too “trigger-happy” with the Juniper. The better course of action would have been an N to 2 and use the Tropical Beach to draw 5 and go from there. Even though he could have hit the Juniper off of the N, there was also a chance he didn’t hit what he needed and that would have given me a better shot at the game. Oh well.

Round 8 vs. Tord Reklev (Norway) (Blastoise-EX/Keldeo BCR)

This round was really important, since it would be the difference between top cut or not. My opponent got his top 4 (or top 2, not really sure) trophy from the ECC last year (quite the delay) before the start of the round, so I knew he was a really good player. I did forget his name though.

meditite meditatingpocketmonsters.net
After my last game, I have learned the art of patience.

This game went pretty fast, but it still got to time, weirdly enough. I opt to not attack T2 with my Bouffalant since that would mean I would have had a hand of 1 Energy Switch. So instead, remembering to play a little more conservative, I use Tropical Beach for 5. This turned out to be the better play as I got a Supporter on the fourth and the fifth card.

At some point early game he went to his Blastoise and passed. I didn’t have a Catcher so I used Night Spear on the Blastoise. While this may seem weird with me not wanting to hit the Blastoise, he already had 2 Blastoise out and knocking one of them out won’t help as I still would have to fight my way through 3 EXs.

After this he also had a turn where he hit a Super Scoop Up heads to heal his active Keldeo with 3 Energy. He did forget the Ability of Bouffalant, “Bouffer,” so he only hit me for 90. He did not take out the Bouffalant but instead Catchered up a Mewtwo and loaded up his own Mewtwo with 5 Energies for the 1HKO.

This was perfectly fine to me as I had Mewtwo + DCE in hand to respond with my own knockout. I also benched my third Mewtwo, knowing we would go to war. He responded with a 3 Energy Mewtwo and I dropped another DCE on my third Mewtwo in response. At this moment I was asking him how many Mewtwo he played and it turned out he only played 2 with no Super Rod. Phew.

On his turn, time got called. In the end, after a judge made him speed up a little (it was a hard decision for him) he used Secret Sword on my Mewtwo for 110. I retreated Mewtwo, because I whiffed my Gold Potion several times and used Night Spear with a fresh Darkrai on his active Keldeo after N’ing us down to 2. My cards from the N were 2 Catcher so I had the game if he didn’t get a catcher or 8 Energy on the Keldeo.

On his turn he used Super Scoop up on his Keldeo and hit a tails. This wouldn’t have mattered since I had 90 damage on a Blastoise and I could Knock that Out for the game, but it was a big flip nonetheless in case I whiffed on Catcher. He then used Bianca to get 5 cards out of his 7 card deck and completely whiffed the Catcher he needed. He retreated his Keldeo and passes.

I topdeck a Juniper, show him the two Catchers and Night Spear the Keldeo for the game.

6-2

I was so relieved at the end of this game. Turned out he only played 2 Catcher in total! So you could blame him only running 2 as the cause he whiffed, but he whiffed nonetheless. Everyone was excited to see who would make cut and who would bubble out. Here are the standings of the day:

Standings ECC
ECC standings after Swiss

As you can see, I get into cut as the 27th seed! I dropped off my deck (it had to stay there overnight), and my mom took a picture of me with David Hochmann and the Gengar and Pikachu mascots (I am the guy on the left).

Picture of me
Say “Pikachu”!

After that I went home and got a good rest for the next day.

Day 2

On the next morning I pack my stuff again and me and my dad go to the sports hall again for day 2. It was held in the same area as day 1, which meant there was a lot of room to play casually and test for Plasma Storm. There was also a Plasma Storm prerelease during the top cut, but I didn’t attend it as I had to play a top cut match myself!

The top cut consisted of best out of 3 with 60 minutes + 3 turns as time limit. A pretty normal top cut if you ask me. Anyway, on to the top cut!

Top 32 vs Joshua Galys (Darkrai EX/Mewtwo EX/Bouffalant DRX)(Germany)

Game 1

season3_ep41_ss1 mirror matchpokemon.com
Pretend those are Bouffalants.

In top 32 I am facing the mirror again. In game one he gets to go first. So far I have only lost the mirror but I do know Bouffalant is key to winning the matchup.

He starts off great with a turn 2 Night Spear while I get my own on turn 3. This kept me on the back foot all game. He did Knock Out my Sableye to basically prevent me from using Bouffalant (since I wanted him to take 7 Prizes). From here we trade Night Spears but he drops a Dark Claw to counter my Eviolites.

I couldn’t get my Tool Scrapper or my Gold Potion in time and even N couldn’t stop him as he had enough on board to secure him the victory. There was some hope for me, but he just outsped me early game and drew well enough late game to win.

Game 2

We shuffle up and I go first on Game 2. Here I get a turn 2 Night Spear and Knock Out his Sableye with the only Energy on the field. From here he couldn’t keep up and I was 2 Night Spears ahead at every moment in the game.

He did Knock Out a Darkrai, but I had a fresh one waiting in the wings, ready to attack and keep on the onslaught. He did N me to 3 in the end, but I did draw out of it to secure the game.

Game 3

Game 3 went rather uneventful for me. I start with a triple mulligan knowing I get to go second and I only get a lone Sableye out even though I had 2 Mewtwos in my hand. He almost gets the donk on my Sableye with a Mewtwo but he missed an Energy Switch and from there everything goes downhill even more.

To be blunt, I don’t see a Supporter for the entire game and he sets up and sweeps me.

6-3, finished in top 32

ash ketchum dejected sadpokemon.theirstar.com
I am disappoint.

This was really disappointing. On the moment it mattered the most, my deck didn’t work for me. Sometimes these losses are even harder for you as you couldn’t do anything about them, which makes them even more frustrating. After some time alone I finally accept my loss and look at things positive again.

On the other hand, I made it into Top 32 in a field of 249 Masters in my first competitive season. That alone isn’t something small. I play with some friends who lost as well and had a great time altogether. I get 30 Championship Points, so I am at 211 now.

Looking back, I think this was a great tournament for me. I picked the right deck, had a good list and made Top 32. I had a great time during the event and met many cool people, including PokémanDanLv45. I also pulled a Victory Piece and a Colress out off my 3 Prize packs, which wasn’t too shabby.

In the end, Dennis Brocke beat David Hochmann in an epic Darkrai showdown. This was the top 4:

  1. Dennis Brocke (Germany) – Darkrai/Hammers
  2. David Hochmann (Germany) – Darkrai/Mewtwo
  3. Thomas Vernier (France) – Rayquaza/Eelektrik
  4. Tamao Cameron (United Kingdom) – Darkrai/Hydreigon

Congratulations to the top 4 finishers! As most people predicted, the tournament was filled with anti-Keldeo decks and Keldeo itself. Personally I didn’t see much Landorus at all.

Also, you can find the total top 32 matchups and results in this bracket.

That pretty much sums up my weekend. I had a great time at the tournament and it actually makes me hungry for more. There hasn’t been a time where I didn’t enjoy a tournament, even when I whiffed cut. The Pokémon community is just great. There are a lot of people who share your passion about the game and almost everyone is really nice.

But alas, the BLW–BCR format is now over and Plasma Storm will shake things up again. I will not go in depth about Plasma Storm, since I haven’t tested for it yet, but the future sure does look grim for slow set up decks. I won’t doubt we will be using many Hypnotoxic Lasers in the future!

Props

  • Me making top 32
  • Getting my first ever Turn 1 Night Spear
  • Meeting many people
  • My dad for driving me to the event
  • Almost everyone being so nice and friendly
  • Me winning a Master Ball shaped yoyo
  • Gold Potion saving me numerous times

Slops

  • My deck crapping out in top 32
  • Having a stupid cough all weekend
  • It being cold in the mornings

Thanks for reading my report! I hope you all enjoyed reading it and if you have any feedback or comments, you can post them down below. I think I was pretty spot on in most of my games, but if I missed anything, you can always tell me.

Until next time,
Twan.

Reader Interactions

14 replies

  1. Mathias Bjørnstad

    I thought this was a great report. Well done man, and I hope you keep up the good work!

  2. Niklas Lehnert-Rappel

    I was your Round 2 opponent (Niklas Lehnert-Rappel GERMANY ;) )

    • Twan van Vugt  → Niklas

      Ah. then i messed up the nationality because of the DE. I’ll let adam know so he can fix it :)

  3. Tord Reklev

    Nice report man :) I am the guy from the 8. round. Tord Reklev if you wanted to know ;) I got ahead of myself in our game, the safe thing to do would have been opening the mewtwo war with a 6 energy Keldeo, but yeah, things happen :P I thought you where a real veteran when we played, keep upp the good work ;)

  4. mz1hC

    I really did enjoy the read. Nice T1 Night Spear as well.

Leave a Reply

You are logged out. Register. Log in.