Heavy Metal: A Top 32 US Nationals Report and a Look at Klinklang

Hi readers, my name is Josh Frink and I have been playing Pokémon somewhat competitively for 5 years now. This year has been my best with two Top 4s at States and multiple Points-earning results from Battle Roads, as well as a few Cities. I also enjoy music – lots of music (not that you really care).

Pre-Nats Testing

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Me trying to decide on a deck.

The month or so between the last Battle Roads and Nationals was spent mainly testing with another 6P user Christopher. I had originally decided to go with Gothitelle/Accelgor as it had given me a 3rd place at Battle Roads as well as being the only deck I had really tested in the new format.

However multiple testing sessions led to me changing my mind a fair amount of times. I believe it went a little like this: Goth, Darkrai, Goth, , Darkrai, Flareon, Plasma, ZekEels, Darkrai, etc… Going into my last day of league the weekend before Nats, I had made the decision of playing Darkrai if Tropical Beaches were not available to me and Blastoise/Keldeo if they were.

I began testing Darkrai extensively and realized that while it did manage to set up well most games, it struggled to compete with cards like Kyurem PLF and even opposing Absol PLF to maintain a Prize lead. While I liked Keldeo a bit more, I found it had flaws against Plasma, as they usually took 2 Prizes off my EXs, while I was taking 1 off a Kyurem or using Pokémon Catcher to take 2 Prizes, but leaving Kyurem to continue striking.

My Masters friend Jared who had been helping me test the Klinklang matchup for both of my decks told me that he was not going to be attending Nats this year due to some last minute family plans that came up. He knew how much my deck choice had changed and ended up giving me his deck (the actual physical copy) to bring to Nats. Jared loved the deck and had quite a lot of success with it at Battle Roads (winning one and Top 4’ing a slew of others). He thought it was a great play for Nats.

I did not have too much experience with Klinklang, but did like its matchups against the 3 heavy hitters: Darkrai, Keldeo, and Plasma. The week passed by and I made my decision: Klinklang if I could get Tropical Beaches and Darkrai if not.

Nationals

Day Zero

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My dad used “Sleep!” on us.

My good friend Sam slept over the night before and we counted bulk until around 1 AM before my dad came up angry with us because we were leaving so early in the morning. We ended up getting to bed around 1:30 and taking off about 8. We went to the bank and by the time we were on the road and Matt was there with us we hit the highway at about 10:30.

The drive was long and I think we listened to the Goo Goo Dolls’ new album about 4 times and Matchbox Twenty’s new album about 6. When we finally arrived at about 3:30 PM we had Christopher waiting for us in the lobby of the Marriott Downtown.

We decided to go to the convention center and see if the registration line had any people in it. I had pre-registered, Sam had not (he was the smarter one given how online pre-registration ended up). The line extended all the way back and around the corner. It was a little ridiculous so I took Christopher’s Quadlax and went to where the Top Cut Central was hosting side events. I decided I had not been there in time to try and get the points for the “Final Four Battle” so I decide to play in a box tournament.

I WON A BOX WITH QUAD SNORLAX!

I go back to the hotel to eat and decide testing might be a good idea. I have Christopher over while Sam is sorting more of our massive numbers of bulk. Christopher and I play 7 games all of which I play Klinklang and he plays different decks each time starting with Plasma and ending with Plasma again. I proceed to 7-0 him and give up on Darkrai completely. Christopher finds the extra Tropical Beaches and it’s settled, I am going to play Klinklang.

Here’s the list:

Pokémon – 13

4 Klink DEX

1 Klang DEX

2 Klinklang PLS

2 Klinklang BLW

3 Cobalion EX

1 Cobalion NVI

Trainers – 36

4 Professor Juniper

4 N

3 Skyla

2 Colress

 

4 Rare Candy

3 Heavy Ball

1 Ultra Ball

3 Pokémon Catcher

3 Switch

3 Max Potion

2 Exp. Share

1 Float Stone

1 Dowsing Machine

 

2 Tropical Beach

Energy – 11

11 Metal

Techs in My List

2 Exp. Share

THIS CARD IS AMAZING IN KLINKLANG! Almost all of the non-EX attackers in this format have the ability to 1-shot your attackers, and Exp. Share prevents you from losing Energy on the field and is therefore THE BEST tech that is in my deck.

11th Energy

Energy is so key in this deck due to most of the attacks you use requiring 3. Having a lot of Energy gives you a huge advantage and also allows for you to ditch a few early on.

Other Tech Ideas

Keldeo EX

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In all honesty I don’t recommend this.

This card is extremely helpful against Hypnotoxic Lasers and the Victini NVI 15 problem when playing against RayEels decks. However, the card is an extremely terrible card to start with. It requires you to play AT LEAST 2 Float Stone and overall is bad for consistency; not to mention it is not Heavy Ball searchable nor is it Metal type. All in all I do not suggest this card.

Tool Scrapper

If you are able to find room for one, and are worried about Garbodor, I suggest playing one. Tool Scrapper is very useful against Garbodor; having the one turn of Shift Gear so you can Max Potion off damage is very, very strong in that matchup. Getting rid of your opponents’ Float Stones is also an invaluable resource.

Super Rod

Super Rod is an extremely useful tech if you tend to discard your Klinklangs and/or Metal Energy early on, I however play 11 Energy and therefore usually do not find myself in the position where I need to get them back. Only playing 6 cards that discard other cards makes this not a very important addition to the deck but is still a solid option.

Computer Search

This card allows you to search for any card in your deck making getting Klinklang out relatively easier. It is also good for getting out Tropical Beach early or even a key Trainer card that may still be in your deck. However drawing into Computer Search late game is utterly worthless and is in my opinion second to Dowsing Machine as far as ACE SPECs go.

4th Heavy Ball/Switch/Max Potion

All of these cards are exceedingly good in Klinklang. If your meta does not have many Plasma I suggest the 4th Heavy Ball over the 1 Ultra Ball; every other of the 4th’s is at your discretion and play style.

Matchups

These are my personal opinions on how matchups are for this deck. I will not post ratios due to me not really having any idea how people come up with them.

Blastoise – Very Favorable

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Can’t touch this!

This is your best matchup. Your setup is just as fast as theirs and it prevents all of their attackers from attacking.

Darkrai – Favorable

While Absol PLF can make this matchup difficult, it is relatively easy to play around. Only bench 1-2 Pokémon maximum and they can no longer knock out any of your Pokémon in one hit (aside from Klink and Klang).

Plasma – Favorable

Kyurem can 1-shot you, however you can also 1-shot Kyurem. It is much easier for you to keep Energy in play than it is for them so if they have no way of Blizzard Burning you next turn, attach Float Stone to Klinklang PLS and Heavy Bullet your way to victory.

Gothitelle – Very Unfavorable

You cannot 1-shot anything in their deck and they will get out Gothitelle before you get 3 Energy on a Cobalion EX almost every time. This deck is basically an auto-loss.

Garbodor – Even

While Garbodor is a good deck against you, it is rather easy (especially going first) to get 3 Energy on Cobalion before they can knock you out with Landorus EX or Cobalion EX. It also helps that they play Prism Energy so you can prevent them from keeping a lot of Energy in play with Cobalion EX’s Righteous Edge attack. Cobalion EX’s second attack Steel Bullet also 1-shots Garbodors and Trubbishes.

RayEels (with Victini) – Very Unfavorable

RayEels has Victini. Victini 1-shots everything you have. If they are playing RayEels with Shred Rayquaza instead of Victini then you are completely fine, but if not this is a very bad matchup.

ZekEels – Slightly Favorable

While they can always hit you for 150 they struggle due to your Klinklang PLS blocking them from 1-shotting you and the constant Switch, Shift Gear, Max Potion combos. If they knock out your Klinks early however it is difficult to make a comeback.

Day One

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Practicing my “GG!” handshake in my sleep.

I wake up at around 6:30 AM, get all cleaned up for the big day, go print my deck list, as well as Sam’s, and come back to, you guessed it, count more bulk. We ended up leaving the Marriott around 8:30 or so and go to meet the other MI players as well as some friends from around the country. Sam goes to sell bulk and I go off with the other Josh to steal one of his granola bars so I will have some food to aid in my concentration during the day.

Sam comes and finds us and we all sleeve our Flareons to try and trick people into thinking that is what we decided to play.

Among some of my friends in the community:

  • Sam M (the kid I had to spend a 5 hour drive with) is playing Darkrai.
  • Josh L is playing Plasma.
  • Justin B who won IN Regionals is piloting Darkrai.
  • Christopher S is playing Gothitelle.

I see a lot of positive matchups for my deck in Seniors and decide I am happy with my deck choice. *slowly rips up Quadlax list* We even convinced Joey N that the majority of us were playing Flareon. Pairings go up and I get that lump in my throat like I always do before a big tournament.

Round 1 vs. Anthony c (Darkrai)

Deciding to play with 2 mats instead of one, I put down my Scrafty mat then my Worlds 2010 mat, I call tails and he rolls tails. I GET TO GO FIRST! I flip over double Klinks to his Sableye and smile. Darkrai is the matchup I tested most aside from Plasma and felt pretty confident. I attach for turn to my Klink and Juniper, attach Exp. Share to my benched Klink and play my Tropical Beach, using it to draw 2 cards.

He gets off a Hypnotoxic Laser and Ultra Balls for and Absol, Dark Patching to it but not having the cards necessary for a turn 1 attack. I get the turn 2 double Klinklang, play N, and then attach and Beach for 2. He attaches to his Absol, retreats and hits me for 60 with his Dark Clawed Absol.
Eventually I knock all of his Absols out with my 2 Klinklang and proceed to bench 4 Cobalions in one turn. It goes downhill for him from there and I take the game.

1-0

Round 2 vs. Austen Vance (Plasma)

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“Here comes the Klink squad.”

I start with Cobalion EX and a Klink this game and once again have the opportunity to go first. I attach to my Cobalion after seeing his lone Kyurem start and play Heavy Ball to get out a Klink then Juniper my hand of 2 Metal Energy and a Klang, drawing into my other 2 Klink. I could not resist and place down the other 2 announcing with pride “Here comes the Klink squad.” I must admit it is not as cool as the Squirtle squad but is a close second.

I did not hit Tropical Beach off of my Juniper and Righteous Edge for 60 on his active Kyurem. His turn is rather productive and he is able to pull of a turn 1 Frost Spear after using Pokémon Catcher to bring up a Klink using Hypnotoxic Laser and putting down 2 Deoxys EX PLF taking a Prize.

I manage to get a Klinklang PLF down on turn 2 and have a steady attachment rate throughout the game, while getting a turn 3 Shift Gear Klinklang. He never takes a second Prize and I proceed to win.

2-0

Lunch started after round two which was a godsend after eating almost nothing the night before and Sam missing breakfast (shout out to Josh for not letting me starve). We go up to the food court and my dad comes and has lunch with Josh, Sam, and I. We eat maki chicken as is Sam and I’s ritual to eat Asian food whenever we have lunch at a Pokémon event. MAKI CHICKEN IS DELICIOUS BY THE WAY.

My dad proceeds to be immature and crack jokes like he is one of the teenagers. Whatever, everyone thought it was funny. We start to head back and we find out there is a Teavana in that mall!!! That is my favorite store so I go in and get some chai tea to relax me before my next round.

Round 3 vs. Elijah Covitz (Plasma)

I feel rested and alert at this point ready to play some Pokémon. Elijah goes first and flips over a Deoxys EX to my Cobalion NVI. He plays a Team Plasma Ball for a Thundurus EX and plays a Switch then uses Professor Juniper discarding only 2 Plasma Energy and a few other Trainer cards. He hits a Kyurem off the Juniper and passes, having whiffed the Energy to attack.

I draw into a Cobalion EX and bench it, Heavy Ball for a Klink, and then N, having no other Supporter. I hit an amazing hand and Ultra Ball for a second Klink, having an Energy, a Heavy Ball, and a Beach in hand. I attach Energy to my active and drop Beach for 6. He whiffs N and I get turn 2 double Klinklang.

I proceed to Catcher his Kyurem, attach to Klinklang, play Switch and discard the Prism on Kyurem with Righteous Edge. The next turn, he benches Absol and Frost Spears me. The next turns go a bit like this: I KO his non-EX, he sends up a new one, does a little damage, I Shift Gear + Max Potion, and knock out a new Kyurem with my Cobalion NVI.

Later I found out that Elijah had a double bye and was the winner of California Regionals.

3-0

There is a rumor spreading that all 9 rounds of Swiss will be played today and this scares me.

Round 4 vs. Austin Barner (Klinklang)

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The more you know…

Having only had Klinklang for about 4 days this was one of the matchups I never got to test. Unfortunately this came back to bite me. I proceeded to set up Plasma Klinklang with Energy, as I thought when he setup his Plasma Klinklang, my Cobalion EX would be rather worthless…. I did not know that he was able to Steel Bullet me while I had Plasma Klinklang out.

This is a painful loss so let us not go back there.

3-1

Round 5 vs. Jared Huang (Plasma)

He gets to go first and I start with a Cobalion EX active as well as a Cobalion NVI on my bench. He starts with a lone Deoxys and is unable to get any Kyurem out of his deck. He instead goes for a Thundurus EX, attaches a Float Stone to his active, and retreats doing 40 to my active Cobalion EX.

I have a Max Potion in hand but opt not to use it and instead Skyla for a Heavy Ball. I search out a Klink with my Heavy Ball then Ultra Ball for a second one, drop Beach and use it. I DRAW NOTHING. I believe my hand was this: Klang, 5 Metal Energy, and Max Potion.

I put on a good poker face and pray he plays an N. He does and I hit everything I need, getting Dowsing Machine, Heavy Ball, and 2 Rare Candies, as well as an Energy. I thank him for shuffling my deck prior to me drawing.

I end up drawing into a Supporter and proceed to get both of my Klinklangs out, play the Supporter I got, attach for turn, then use my Tropical Beach. The game does not go well for him and while he does manage to KO my Cobalion EX with a combination of Hypnotoxic Laser and Virbank City Gym, he is unable to mount a comeback once I knock out all of his non-EX attackers.

4-1

I find out Christopher (our number 1 Senior in Michigan, currently at 670 CP) is 2-3, having played against only Plasma thus far with Gothitelle, and this makes me laugh a little but also a little sad because he is a friend and I want him to do well.

They make the announcement that we will only be playing until Round 7 today and this takes A LOT of pressure off. I decide to go into the next round cool headed and not to worry about the win or loss… this did not last long however.

Round 6 vs. Elliot Sayles (Klinklang)

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Came up BIG this game.

I start lone Klink going second and am extremely scared. This is the first possibility for me to get donked so far. He flips Cobalion EX and for the second time I breathe a sigh of relief. We both set up pretty quickly having both of our Klinklangs out each by turn 3. I learned from my mistakes and decided to actually set down a Cobalion EX this game. The game is going very smoothly until at one point he announces “Rush In, retreat.” He then decides to change his mind and puts back up Cobalion EX.

Our game is already rather close to time, but I knew my dad would get really mad at me if I did not call him out on his misplay. I call him on it and the judges “discuss it” for about 20 minutes before Elliot realizes he cannot even do damage to me with his Keldeo EX. He decides he wants to promote the Cobalion EX that the whole debate was over. The judges who were completely stumped finally allow us to continue our game…

He does 100 damage to me with his Cobalion EX. I Max Potion my active Cobalion and KO his. He hits me for 100 and I decide to make a risky play. I have the Catcher in hand to get his Cobalion EX back active. If I Steel Bullet him with my already damaged Cobalion EX, I will be able to knock out his with my Cobalion NVI’s Energy Press attack.

I decide to go for it hoping he does not have N or Max Potion. He hits neither, retreats, and knocks out my Cobalion EX. I promote Cobalion NVI, Shift Gear, attach, Pokémon Catcher, and Energy Press for the win in my most stressful game of the day.

5-1

Round 7 vs. William Compere (Darkrai)

We roll to see who goes first and, of course, he does. The pressure is on at this point and I try to keep myself extremely focused on winning the game. I get a rather quick start having a Plasma Klinklang out by turn 3 and a BLW Klinklang on turn 4.

I am able to knock out two of his Absols on turn 3 and 4 and when he Ultra Balls for a third (revealing he plays a Deoxys EX tech), he finds out that 2 out of his 4 Absols had been prized. I breathe a sigh of relief as my luck seems to be good and continue playing.

At one point he straight up just asks me to scoop to him. I of course say no to this and continue the game. I end up 6-0’ing him as he is never able to keep damage on my board.

6-1

I end Day 1 at 6-1 and am rather happy. I decide to check online pairings so that I can see my resistance and then look down the line. My resistance looks really good at first and then I realize that both my round 1 and round 2 opponents dropped from the tournament.

Yikes! I realized I was probably not going to make cut at 6-3 unless all of my opponents show up tomorrow and win both of their remaining games. I find the other Great Lakes Seniors to see how they are doing:

  • Sam M went 1-4 drop with Darkrai.
  • Jarret D went 2-4 drop with Darkrai.
  • Josh L went 3-4 drop with Plasma.
  • James S is 4-3 with Darkrai.
  • Dominic B is 5-2 with Plasma.
  • Brian P is sitting at 5-2 with Blastoise.
  • Justin B went 4-3 with Darkrai.
  • Christopher S is 3-4 with Goth, still only playing against Plasma.
  • Alex S is 4-3 with Plasma.
  • Joey N is 5-2 with Plasma.
  • Sanjay is 5/2 with Darkrai.

It scared me a little bit to be the only 6-1 out of the lot of us, but this also took a lot of pressure off of me for the next day. Sam, my dad, and I all go to California Pizza Kitchen, where he, as always, is cracking jokes like he’s a high school student. I felt extremely bad for our waitress but she seemed to play along nicely. My dad also gave her a very generous tip for putting up with his shenanigans.

We decide we would like to go see a movie, however by the time we got there the last one had already started and the next was not until 10:45. I decide to go back to the hotel and have James and Christopher over to help me test. Christopher and I play the mirror match extensively and I win almost every game, now knowing how to handle it. James and I discuss a rogue deck involving Hydreigon DRX 97, Sigilyph DRX, and Latias EX to play for the Last Chance for Championship Points Tournament but decide against it when we realize the how terribly inconsistent it is.

Sam’s parents come to pick him up so they can leave for South Carolina and now just my dad and I are there. I go to bed at around 12 AM, setting an alarm for 6 AM.

Day Two

I wake up and decide after the day before that breakfast is very important. I go down to the Starbucks and get an iced coffee as well as a blueberry bagel. Ready to start another day of Pokémon, I head to the convention center.

Arriving there at about 7 AM the doors are not yet open so I go find Jarret and take his World Championships Jumpluff deck. I play random people with it until the doors open and I see pairings are up.

Round 8 vs. Andrew Duluard (Darkrai)

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I hope I don’t get jacked up this game…

I find out he is an Ohio player and am told by Justin that the only reason Andrew is not in first place there is due to the fact that he rarely goes to tournaments. I feel a bit pressured by this but try to go in with a clear head anyway.

He, of course, gets to go first and I start with a Cobalion EX to his lone Absol. He attaches to his Absol, benches a Sableye, Ultra Balls grabbing a Darkrai EX, retreats for his Sableye, and finally plays Professor Juniper. Andrew hits Energy Switch and moves an Energy to his Sableye. He plays Hypnotoxic Laser and uses Junk Hunt.

My turn, however, is not nearly as productive. I attach an Energy to my Cobalion EX and use Heavy Ball to search out a Klink. This is all I can do and pass. He N’s me to 6 and I get a Professor Juniper two Plasma Klinklang and 3 Energy. I need to top-deck either Skyla or Rare Candy so that I won’t be discarding my only 2 Plasma Klinklang. Luck seems to be on my side, as after he uses Mind Jack I top-deck the Rare Candy I need. I attach an Energy to my Cobalion EX and use the Rare Candy evolving into a Plasma Klinklang.

Off the Professor Juniper I hit a Switch and Float Stone, using the two in combination to take poison off of my active Cobalion EX. I end up hitting the Tropical Beach off Juniper as well as a BLW Klinklang, a Heavy Ball, and a Rare Candy. I decide to Heavy Ball to get the Klink. Even with the new benched Pokémon, he will not be able to knock out my active Cobalion EX with any combination of cards.

He starts his turn and attaches Dark Claw to both his active Absol and his newly placed benched one. Using Mind Jack he puts my Cobalion EX up to 140 damage. Luckily I still have 3 Max Potions in my deck and have a Skyla in hand to search one out. I Rare Candy my Klink into a BLW Klinklang, move all Energy off of it using BLW Klinklang’s Ability, and use Skyla to search out a Max Potion, removing all of the damage from my Cobalion.

I knock out his active Absol and knock out his second Absol the next turn. He tells me he only plays the two and from there the game is over.

7-1

I feel extremely relieved because at this point I am automatically in top cut and this takes a lot of pressure off for the next game. Still, I would like to have a 8-1 record in Swiss so I decide to go on and try to win anyway.

Round 9 vs. Tommy Brown (Blastoise)

I had finally come to expect that I was not going to get the opportunity to go first anymore, and this game is no different. However, he flips over a lone Squirtle and I do a little dance on the inside. All of the buzz about Blastoise is the reason why I chose to play Klinklang in the first place and I was pretty pumped when I saw that I would get the opportunity to play against one.

Unfortunately for the purpose of this report, the game was rather boring. I got a turn 2 Plasma Klinklang and he was never able to knock out any of my Pokémon.

8-1

So I finish Swiss with an 8-1 record and realize that there is a Gothitelle at 6-3 who would probably make cut due to being 6-0 and losing out. I go over and find the Schemanske family and thank them so many times for allowing me to use their Tropical Beach cards.
I play a game against Mrs. Schemanske to help me test Gothitelle… this went poorly for me.

Standings go up and I am at 7th seed. notable records for me were:

  • Justin making cut at 6-3.
  • BP making cut at 7-2.
  • Sanjay whiffing cut at 6-3.
  • Christopher ending up going 5-4.
  • Dominic making cut his first year at Nationals with a 7-2 record.
  • Joey Nawal whiffing.
  • And 4 of my opponents from Swiss (all of whom I beat) making cut.

They decide to start Top 64 before sending us on lunch break and I end up getting paired up against a newly aged-up Senior division player, Daniel Jiroutek. Daniel was a very nice kid and an all around pleasure to play against.

Top 64 vs. Daniel Jiroutek (Plasma)

Game 1

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It’s a war of attrition versus this guy.

I figure he will win the toss and of course I am right. Daniel goes first starting with a Kyurem to my Cobalion EX, benches 2 Deoxys, and attaches to his active. He is unable to get the Colress Machine he needs to get a turn 1 Frost Spear.

I get a very nice start and am somehow able to get an Energy as well as 3 Klinks and a Tropical Beach out turn 1, however I use my only Supporter (Skyla) to get a Heavy ball for my 3rd Klink. I use Beach and see that I have a turn 2 BLW Klinklang. This is not the ideal choice to start off, but it is better than leaving my Klinks out by themselves. Daniel ends up N’ing me into Plasma Klinklang and a Skyla so I am able to get it out turn 2.

Daniel whiffs the Colress Machine once again to do 140 with Blizzard Burn to my active. He instead uses Pokémon Catcher to bring up one of my Klinks, uses Hypnotoxic Laser and uses Frost Spear to knock it out. My turn is rather productive as I get out my Plasma Klinklang, another Klink and evolve my current one into a Klang. Having only 2 Energy on the field and 30 on my Cobalion EX I did not want to risk using Tropical Beach and having him use a Pokémon Catcher to 1-shot my Cobalion EX.

I opt to use Cobalion’s Righteous Edge attack discarding his Prism and preventing him from being able to use a Blizzard Burn the next turn to knock me out. I end up knocking out his Kyurem. I proceed to KO all 4 of his non-EX Pokémon and take the game.

1-0

Game 2

He obviously chooses to go first and flips over a Kyurem to my lone Klink. I am extremely scared at this point as he has Professor Juniper. He plays Hypnotoxic Laser as well as a Virbank City Gym to poison me. Plays the Professor Juniper discarding 3 Plasma Energy and ends up whiffing the Colress Machine to donk me.

The game goes downhill for him from there and I get both my Klinklang and a fully charged up Cobalion NVI by turn 3. He can never come back from it and loses.

2-0

Judges collect my deck and we break for lunch. I find out both Brian and Justin lost in Top 64, but Dom and I are still in. Dom, Josh, my dad, and I all go back to the food court and get some more maki chicken. I grab Teavana on the way back and I am in the Seniors area 10 minutes early.

Top 32 vs. Orrin Wilson (Darkrai/Garbodor)

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Friendly opponent… unfriendly deck.

I sit down and they are starting the round for Seniors late… of course. Orrin and I talk and play with my dreidel until we start. We got really bored so we decide to tell each other the decks we are playing and talk strategy with them. Orrin is one of the nicest people I have met in Pokémon and it was a sincere pleasure to have the opportunity to play against him.

Due to the relatively boring nature of these games I will only be giving a quick sum up of the games we played.

Game 1

I get a Cobalion EX attacking by turn 3 and am able to knock out all of his Pokémon that have 100 HP or less while preventing him from keeping a Garbodor up.

1-0

Game 2

He gets to go first and ends up getting out 2 Garbodor by turn 3. My Klinklangs are relatively worthless as every time I knock out a Garbodor it seems he has another one.

1-1

Game 3

I go first and have an amazing start, except for one problem… no turn 1 Energy. He ends up getting two Garbodors out turn 3 where as, if I had gotten the Energy turn 1 he would have had only 1. At this point I had both of my Klinklangs out and he had no N in hand. I would have knocked out both of his Garbodor and likely would have won this game had I gotten an Energy turn 1.

1-2

I was a little bit bummed about losing after starting off so well, but I am glad that I lost to Orrin. He is one of the kindest players I have met in this game and I wish him HUGE amounts of luck at Worlds. Hopefully I get the opportunity to play him again!

Unfortunately I was unable to get the Points I needed to qualify for Worlds but this experience was outstanding. After participating in 4 Nationals before this one, I am still able to say that the 5th was just as good as the rest.

Congratulations to Sean Foisy on Top 8 in Masters and Alex Hill on Top 64 in Masters, both of whom are from Michigan.

Epilogue

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The surprise factor may be gone.

Klinklang is one of the better Tier 2 decks in our format right now, I do not know if I would suggest it to players going to Worlds as I did feel the reason I did so well was a kind of “surprise factor.” Many of my opponents told me that thought Klinklang was dead and were not expecting to play against it. However if you plan on seeing a lot of Darkrai, Blastoise, or Plasma at Worlds it is definitely a good idea to try it out.

Nationals was once again an outstanding experience for me. I did pretty well ending with a 11-3 record for the weekend. If any of you are pondering whether Nationals is worth the trip for next year, my answer to you is 100% YES! It is the perfect opportunity to expand your horizons while having fun playing Pokémon! It not only gives you the excuse to travel (which is always great) but also a reason to spend your weekend in “beautiful Indianapolis.”

I can say in all honesty that I am already looking forward to next year’s Nationals and hopefully meeting a lot of you there. Who knows where it is going to be… maybe Indianapolis again? I personally would like to go back to St. Louis. Maybe it will be somewhere it hasn’t been before, but in all honesty not knowing is half the fun.

Reader Interactions

21 replies

  1. Brit Pybas

    Congrats on doing well with Klinklang! I’m glad to see it performed well in the other divisions as well!

  2. William Compere

    bro i was joking about the scoop thing. besides who would scoop when u r 5 prizes ahead

  3. Bella Brown

    That was one of the best reports I have ever read. Well done. +1

  4. Empoleon1107

    Congrats on getting top 32! BTW Orrin Wilson got 2nd place, so you got knocked out by the 2nd best deck there.

  5. Collin Ehret

    awesome article! very optimistic and interesting

  6. L Hannibal

    Great article! You missed a couple of other senior division players from michigan who went to nationals. I went 3-6 with Darkrai/Absol – playing mostly Plasma, and another guy was not included as well (can’t remember his deck or stats). How do we find each other next time? Keep up the great articles. Thanks, Lee H.

    • Josh Frink  → L

      Sorry about that Lee. I really only mentioned the people I hung out with over the weekend. Seeing as I saw you like once I never had the opportunity to ask how you had done.

  7. nske

    I enjoyed the reading dude, and Klinklang will never be a dead deck til it gets rotated out and ex pokemom don’t stay as main attackers. Klinklang has potential. Which is why I still enjoy running it. Sadly I haven’t seeen any rayeeels

  8. Damien B.

    This is probably the best article I have ever reaf from a senior :D

    • Josh Frink  → Damien

      I appreciate that a ton man. If you guys like my writing I will definitely write more articles in the future,

  9. Stephen Botha

    I really enjoyed your article a lot! I like your writing style as well as all the little info and tidbits you throw in between. Your dad sounds pretty awesome and hilarious too :).. I’ve always liked Klinklang so good job on doing such a good job!

  10. Elliot Sayles

    Hey its elliot. I got top 64 after a record of 7 and 2…losing to Arjun.

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