Pick Your Poison: A Top 8 Seniors Worlds 2013 Report with Rogue!

Hello all, this is multi-time Cities quarter-finalist, Alex Hedge, known online by various names based on Glaceon. For Worlds this year, I wanted a deck that could beat a combination of Plasma variants, Darkrai, Blastoise, and Gothitelle, or at least three of the four.

After Nationals, it seemed Gothitelle would be the deck to beat for Worlds. In playtesting, I found many of my friends had switched from Plasma or Blastoise to Gothitelle, and this wasn’t just occurring among my friends. About a week after the sudden mass hype from Seniors for Gothitelle, more and more people starting testing anti-Gothitelle variants (Darkrai with 3 Keldeo-EX, extra Keldeo-EX in Plasma, I even saw a Darkrai/Garbodor with 3 Sneasel).

I wanted to play a deck with a very good Gothitelle matchup as well, but I had a mental conflict as to if Gothitelle was worth countering, or if it was better to play a deck that countered the counter decks.

I ended up using a process of elimination to get down to two decks, Blastoise and Terrakion/Garbodor, about a month before Worlds. However, there were flaws about each. Blastoise is more susceptible to in-game luck, while Terrakion/Garbodor is more susceptible to pairings-based luck (who you play against determines how well you do, almost).

When going in to Worlds, I decided I did not want my performance to be determined by bad hands, but I had to give up having a good chance against almost any deck by doing so. That’s why this format is pick your poison – whatever deck you choose will have some type of luck involved.

The Birth and Evolution of Terrakion-EX/Garbodor

terrakion ex dragons exalted drx 71pokemon-paradijs.com
Who would have thought? Certainly not me.

On the day before United States Nationals, I was in the open testing room watching my friends playtest Darkrai/Garbodor, when my friend Jeremy Gibson came up and said that he wanted to tech Terrakion-EX in to it, along with four or five F Energy, to boost the Darkrai matchup.

I recommend to him what he should drop and that was the end of it… until I found out the next day that Jeremy, with the help of Arjun K and David S (whom I didn’t know but was with them at the time), had decided to use Terrakion-EX in his Darkrai/Garbodor, except he had dropped all Darkrais, Sableyes, Absols, and D Energies, and instead used 4 Terrakion-EX and 1 Landorus-EX.

Though he lost the first round to a turn two donk on his Landorus by a Kyurem, he ended up making Top 64, where he lost to a Darkrai variant piloted by a fellow Maryland player, Trevor L (who ended up losing in Top 16 after three close games). Even though he had lost in Top 64, I was intrigued. The deck was still not known, and I asked Trevor to not tell people about it as well. Right after Nationals I felt extremely confident about my Worlds deck choice.

I started to playtest it with some of my friends who also knew about the deck… and lost many times as they all played Gothitelle unless I asked for them not to. After about a week, the three of us that were going to use the deck for Worlds, Jeremy, Arjun, and I, had all dropped it in favor of a deck that had a better Gothitelle matchup.

However, I felt like Gothitelle would live by hype and die by hype, and a few days later started testing with it a bit once again, though at the time I favored Blastoise due to what I felt was a slightly positive Gothitelle matchup (definitely a winnable one, but not very positive), a very set-up dependent Plasma matchup, and a good Darkrai matchup.

But I couldn’t get the idea of there being no Gothitelle and instead many lists oriented to beating it out of my mind. I decided to test both decks and make scenarios for which deck I played, so I would be prepared for anything.

Here were my scenarios…

Scenario 1: Gothitelle is most played deck, with Darkrai and Plasma in high numbers to counter it.

Solution 1: Play Blastoise.

Scenario 1.1: Gothitelle is most played deck, and Darkrai Garbodor is in high numbers to counter it, along with Plasma.

Solution 1.1: Play Darkrai, have a way to beat Plasma. (Looking back, this is not really in depth at all but I doubted it would happen.)

Scenario 1.2: Gothitelle is most played deck, and Kyurem/Keldeo/Deoxys is in high numbers to counter it, along with Plasma.

Solution 1.2: Play Darkrai, 2-3 Dark Claw.

Scenario 2: There are many Gothitelle counters, to the point where the Gothitelle players get scared and drop the deck and only counters remain.

Solution 2: Play Terrakion-EX/Garbodor.

Scenario 2.1: Goth counters are everywhere, but Gothitelle is still prominent.

Solution 2.1: Play Terrakion-EX/Garbodor (risky) or a generally consistent deck with 50-50 matchups, such as Blastoise.

As time went by, I saw less and less Gothitelle being played and higher numbers of anti-Gothitelle, but Arjun was still reluctant to play Terrakion/Garbodor (and I didn’t know where Jeremy stood with it). It was three and a half weeks before Worlds and I had nobody to playtest with, so I started practicing with my friend Christopher (KPiplup), but he didn’t seem to like the deck much, and I assumed he didn’t really want to play against the deck very much because he wouldn’t be playing against it at Worlds if I was the only one playing it.

Ok, maybe I panicked a little.
I then went to my local Prerelease and brought the deck, knowing a friend of mine who knew a bit about the deck from Nationals would be there. We played a few games at the Prerelease and took turns using Terrakion-EX/Garbodor. He loved it and we started playing 4 games a day, and after a while we racked up quite a few games. We decided 3-3 Garbodor was better than 3-2, and that Energy Retrieval and Max Potion was solid.

Flash forward to the day before Worlds: Arjun and Jeremy decided to play Terrakion-EX/Garbodor because my aforementioned scenario 2 was becoming reality. Even my friend Gabe C, who was really, really loving Gothitelle for Worlds, dropped it; when I found out Gabe dropped it I decided that there would probably be only five Gothitelle at Worlds total.

The Grinder didn’t change anything either. One Gothitelle player grinded in out of at least 10 people playing Gothitelle, which I figured would further create uncertainty among people who would potentially play Gothitelle for the main event.

In hindsight, I would not have changed a thing – the list I played I believe is the best it could have been. For the event, all four of us played different lists. Key differences include: Jeremy played 2-2 Garbodor and a Pinsir NXD (for Blastoise/Keldeo, he said), Arjun played a 3-2 Garbodor, 2 Tropical Beach, and 3 Skyla, Michael played a 3-3 Garbodor, no Landorus-EX, no Energy Switch, and 2 Max Potion, and I played a 3-3 Garbodor and no Landorus-EX.

My Worlds List

Pokémon – 10

3 Trubbish DRX

3 Garbodor DRX

4 Terrakion-EX

Trainers – 40

4 Professor Juniper

4 N

2 Skyla

1 Bianca

1 Colress


4 Pokémon Catcher

4 Enhanced Hammer

4 Float Stone

1 Eviolite

2 Ultra Ball

1 Level Ball

1 Heavy Ball

3 Energy Switch

2 Switch

1 Energy Retrieval

1 Max Potion

1 Dowsing Machine


3 Tropical Beach

Energy – 10

10 F

3-3 Garbodor

With a 3-3 Garbodor line I felt confident about the Blastoise matchup as long as they didn’t use Tool Scrapper and more confident about the Blastoise with a Scrapper matchup than I would with just a 2-2. In addition, having a third Garbodor saved me in games where I had to discard 2 Garbodor with a Professor Juniper on my first turn. The other option was to use a 2-2 with a Super Rod, but I still felt like 2-2 was flimsy.

I chose 70 HP Trubbish because they were more difficult to donk. I used the only one that could damage for two Double Colorless Energies. 20 for two could have helped in some freak situation.

3 Tropical Beach

You won’t be attacking T1 anyway, so why not use Beach?

I choose Tropical Beach because I needed to reduce poison damage and with Tropical Beach, I don’t have to just pass my first turn. Three almost always allows me to win the Stadium war, unless of course I am against a deck that plays 3-of a different Stadium. Tropical Beach was also helpful in case of an N to two or three.

2 Switch

I only ran 2 Switch because I had Float Stone for free retreat and Dowsing Machine if I needed an extra. Switch is most useful in the Darkrai matchup because usually the Darkrai player would try to use a Hypnotoxic Laser every turn until I was Knocked Out. Switch was to get rid of poison and sleep.

4 Enhanced Hammer

Michael and I used 4, Jeremy and Arjun used 3. I chose to use four so I could get rid of either all their Plasma Energy if they tried to use Deoxys-EX or so I could get rid of a Blend or Prism Energy every turn to limit their Kyurem’s damage output to 30 a turn. Both counts worked well, I just preferred 4 over 3.

1 Level Ball

I choose a 2/1/1 split over a 3/1 or a 2/2 split because you cannot win without getting out Trubbish. Discarding wasn’t fun turn one, and if I would have had to Skyla for an Ultra Ball every time I wanted to get a Trubbish out turn one I would have lost a few games. Every card is crucial, especially against Plasma.

3 Energy Switch

I almost didn’t use Energy Switch, but Jeremy and Arjun persuaded me that 3 Energy Switch is great. This is because you can attach a F Energy to two different Terrakion-EX and then you use Energy Switch to move the energy from the Terrakion-EX they damaged to the on without damage. This allows you to can Pump-up Smash with a clean Terrakion-EX.

Before I added Energy Switch, having 150 damage on Terrakion-EX by the time I could use Pump-up Smash was not an uncommon situation, but after adding Energy Switch I had that problem a lot less often.

1 Energy Retrieval, 1 Max Potion

These cards work well by themselves, but even better together. If I were to get damaged by say a Kyurem for 150 (with Hypnotoxic Laser and Virbank as well), I could simply retreat, use Max Potion (which would get rid of no Energy), and attach a manual attachment to Terrakion-EX. Then, I would Energy Retrieval back two of the energies I discarded by retreating, and use Pump-up Smash to attach them. The combination practically erases an attack while I only lose a single Energy.

How the Matchups Usually Play Out

Standard Plasma

The Plasma matchup is completely dependent on their Energy lineup. Most lists, however, use 4 Prism Energy, 4 Plasma Energy, 4 Blend Energy (WLFM), and 1 Blend Energy (GRPD), so that is what I’ll use for the matchup explanation. There are two main strategies I have seen for Plasma when taking on Terrakion-EX/Garbodor. There is also a final way that I believe is Plasma’s best hope for winning the matchup, though nobody knew to do it against me.

Enhanced Hammer makes it hard for them to consistently Helix Force.

The first strategy is to set up multiple Deoxys-EX to do consistent Helix Force damage on my set-up Terrakion-EX. This strategy would work very well, but I have my Enhanced Hammer. If they do this, then I try to Knock Out a Deoxys-EX through Pump-up Smash and get rid of 3 Plasma Energy through Enhanced Hammer. Then I will have one Enhanced Hammer left to get rid of an Energy while they attempt to set up a Hail Mary Kyurem or if they use Thundurus EX to reattach a Plasma Energy.

The second strategy is aggro Kyurem. This, in my opinion, doesn’t work as well as the first strategy unless the Terrakion-EX / Garbodor player gets a bad set up, in which case it works much better than the Deoxys strategy. Unless it gets a turn 1 30+ going first, the Kyurem strategy doesn’t well because the Terrakion-EX / Garbodor player can just use one Enhanced Hammer a turn while doing 50 and then 90 to Knock Out the Kyurem. This is exactly what happened in at least three of the Swiss rounds I played.

The most successful strategy requires hitting the right Energy at the right time. What Plasma needs to do is set up a Kyurem using only WLFM Blend Energy and maybe one Plasma either turn one or turn two going first, thus practically forcing the Terrakion-EX/Garbodor player to use two Enhanced Hammer. Then, get out as many Deoxys as possible.

Since only one Plasma Energy would be discarded in that exchange, the Plasma player would have 3 Plasma Energy left while the Terrakion-EX/Garbodor player would have just two Enhanced Hammer left – not enough to discard three Plasma Energy. A stream of Deoxys-EX is really challenging for Terrakion-EX/Garbodor, especially when they have already used Enhanced Hammers. This strategy works even better when no Plasma, Prism, or Blend GRPD Energy have been discarded after multiple Enhanced Hammer have been used.

Lugia Plasma

For Plasma lists with Double Colorless Energy and Lugia EX, Lugia EX is not a great attacker for the matchup despite having resistance because of its dependence and need for Plasma Energy. Playing against Plasma with Lugia is like playing against a less consistent version of Plasma as far as the matchup is concerned, and the player will go to one of the previously mentioned strategies for the Plasma vs Terrakion-EX/Garbodor matchup.

However, if they do use the Lugia EX strategy, the Terrakion-EX player needs to Knock Out the Lugia EX, using at most two Enhanced Hammers while doing so, and then limit future Deoxys or Kyurem with the remaining Enhanced Hammers.

Discarding more than two or three Energy through discarding cards such as Ultra Ball or Professor Juniper is suicidal for the Plasma player, because that is 2-3 Energy plus 4 discarded by Enhanced Hammers, leaving only 5-7 for attackers. Benching a Thundurus EX can be appropriate in certain situations, but if a Plasma player were to bench two Thundurus EX, they would most likely lose.


More difficult a matchup than it appears.

The Darkrai matchup can actually be difficult if the Terrakion-EX player doesn’t get the turn three or four Pump-up Smash. I view this matchup as “set-up and win, don’t set-up and lose.” If the Darkrai player can get a fast Darkrai or Absol out and Hypnotoxic Laser for extra damage, the matchup becomes extremely challenging. If the Terrakion-EX player manages to get out a Pump-up Smash and accelerates Energy though in on another Terrakion-EX, he often wins. It’s all about the Energy.


It’s funny that this was a deck I was worried about going in to Worlds, to the point where I upped my Garbodor count because of the deck, but I never played against one during the main event. While I do have a 3-3 Garbodor, it would be naïve to say that Blastoise is an auto-win. I used to have a Mewtwo for the Blastoise matchup, but dropped it along with the Double Colorless Energy for an Energy Retrieval and a Max Potion.

If they can get out a Keldeo-EX that Knocks Out my Garbodor, it becomes rough because I cannot Knock Out their Keldeo-EX is one hit, allowing them to Knock Out two Garbodors before I can Knock Out the Keldeo. This time lets them set up additional Keldeo-EX as well, giving them a further lead. If they run a Tool Scrapper, I would call the matchup slightly negative. I don’t know why some people think adding Garbodor to any deck makes Blastoise an auto-win.


My auto-loss. Even if they don’t use Tool Scrapper it still isn’t a good matchup. My only “hope” is to get out 3 Garbodors with Float Stone turn two, go first, and for the Gothitelle to dead-draw and miss Double Colorless. Enhanced Hammer can annoy them too. I went in to Worlds with the attitude “I can’t beat it so there is no point in teching for it or making the matchup better; I’ll take the loss.”

Worlds Report: 8 Rounds, Top 32 for Seniors

I sit down and see my opponent is using Gothitelle because he showed me his cards as he shuffled, and immediately tilted and thought I was going to play Gothitelle all day…

Round 1 vs. Ian Whiton (US) w/ Gothitelle/Accelgor

He told me he has been to Worlds 5 times. Wow!

I went first, starting Trubbish, and attached a Float Stone. I benched another Trubbish, played Tropical Beach, and used Tropical Beach. He got the typical Gothita and Shelmet set up and Beached. I evolved both of my Garbodors, used N, got nothing, and Beached for one. He set up a Gothitelle, Accelgor, and Mew-EX. He then used Tool Scrapper so I had just two Garbodors in play, no tools. He proceeded to knock both of them out to bench me after two turns of me not getting basics off supporters.


Arjun 1-0
Jeremy 1-0
Michael 0-1

Oh well, I got rid of the Gothitelle I would play against, and I had to play against one. Right?

Round 2 vs. Nino Kunz w/ Gothitelle/Accelgor (Switzerland National Champion)

We both set up slowly but I get a turn three Garbodor with Float Stone and Rock Tumble and to put 50 on a Gothita. He has two Shelmets and three Gothitas in play. During his turn, he gets a Gothitelle out, using Rare Candy to evolve his benched Gothita. He ends his turn by using Tropical Beach.

I Catcher up his Gothitelle after using Level Ball for another Trubbish, then use Juniper but don’t draw an Energy. I hit his Gothitelle for 50. He attaches a Double Colorless to a Shelmet and uses N, but fails to get the Float Stone. On my turn, I use an N, get the Energy, and Knock Out his only Gothitelle.

He decides to use his Tool Scrapper to get rid of my Float Stone and uses Beach. I attach another Float Stone and Catcher up his undamaged Gothita. I evolve my Trubbish in to a Garbodor, and Ultra Ball to get out my third Trubbish. I use Bianca and draw one of my four Enhanced Hammers to discard a Double Colorless of his.

He draws, Level Balls for another Shelmet (so he now has two Shelmet and one Accelgor in play), and due an apparent bad hand uses Tropical Beach again. During my turn, I Catcher up his Accelgor, evolve my Trubbish in to Garbodor and attach a Float Stone to a second Garbodor, solidifying my lead. Now that my process of getting out Garbodors is over, I start to focus in getting out my second Terrakion-EX.

I use Pokémon Catcher to bring up his Accelgor and then Professor Juniper for a new seven. I draw a Terrakion-EX and a single Energy. Despite only having one Energy, I felt secure if he got the Deck and Cover with Accelgor during his turn as I hadn’t used either of my Switch nor my Dowsing Machine plus I have one of my Switch in hand. I Knock Out the Accelgor, wondering when time will be called.

He draws, and to my disgust (though at this point I had no reason to be disgusted) gets out an Accelgor with a Double Colorless and uses Super Rod to get back an Accelgor, a Shelmet, and a Gothitelle. He also has a Pokémon Communication, putting in his Mew-EX for a Shelmet. He proceeds to Deck and Cover, putting 110 on my Terrakion-EX.

I switch to my Garbodor, retreat for free due to Float Stone, and use my final Catcher on a Shelmet, and use Pump-up Smash to attach two Energy to my other Terrakion-EX and Knock Out a Shelmet. He evolves his Shelmet into an Accelgor, attaches a Double Colorless, and uses Deck and Cover, leaving him with no Shelmet, no Accelgor, a Gothita with 50, a Mew-EX, and a Duskull.

He tries to get back in to the game by benching a Shelmet but I use my Dowsing Machine to get back a Pokémon Catcher, bring up the Shelmet, Knock it Out, and seal the game.


Arjun 2-0
Jeremy 2-0
Michael 1-1

Round 3 vs. Elijah Covitz (US) w/ Darkrai/Absol

I start Trubbish, going second against what I think to be Plasma as he starts Absol, but during his turn, much to my relief, he just attaches a Dark, uses a Hypnotoxic Laser, and passes. My hand isn’t great either, but I do Ultra Ball for a Terrakion-EX and use I a Switch (which needs to be saved for when they laser, do using it now isn’t good but nesessary) to get Terrakion-EX active. I Juniper, discarding an N and a Catcher, but miss the Energy… I just bench a Terrakion-EX and pass.

He draws, attaches, and uses Mind Jack for 60, and benches a Sableye. I draw a Garbodor, evolve my Trubbish in to Garbodor, play a Tropical Beach, and use a Bianca, and attach a Fightimg. I just end my turn with Tropical Beach. He draws and thins his hand down to four by using a Hypnotoxic Laser, using the Ultra Ball he drew for a Darkrai, and attaching a Dark Claw to Absol. He retreats to Sableye and Beaches for 3, but I draw and N him right after attaching my second Energy.

I draw almost nothing, but do get an Energy Switch and Max Potion which will be helpful, along with a Supporter. I hit his Sableye for 50. He draws, plays down Virbank, attaches a Dark Claw to his Absol, and uses a Juniper to discard a D Energy and a Dark Patch. He then Dark Patches the Dark on to Darkrai. He uses another Laser to put me to sleep and I stay Asleep. He proceeds to retreat to Absol and uses Mind Jack for 110.

My hand, which I thought to be bad, was quite useful in the situation I was in. I played down a Tropical Beach, Energy Switch my Energy on my active Terrakion-EX to my benched one, attach to my benched one, use the Max Potion, discarding an Energy, and Tropical Beach. I stay asleep. He continues to power up his Darkrai (which has now 2 Energy) and gets an Energy on his Sableye. And hit my Terrakion-EX again.

I have the Float Stone in hand… but it stays asleep so I am forced to use my final Switch to bring up my Terrakion with two Energy. I attach an Energy to it, Catcher up his Darkrai, and use N. I don’t get another Terrakion and just one Energy for Pump-up Smash, and am forced to put an Energy on the damaged one. I Knock Out the Darkrai but he sends up Sableye and benches another Darkrai, and damages me with Absol.

I Knock Out his Absol, but am still unable to attach extra Energy, though I have 4 Energy left in my deck. I had used my Energy Retrieval at that point, but had Dowsing Machine if absolutely necessary. He sends up the Sableye with 50, attaches to his Darkrai and uses Junk Hunt to get back a Dark Patch and a Hypnotoxic Laser.

I draw, use Ultra Ball, discarding an N and an Enhanced Hammer (deck thinning is underrated). I bench another Terrakion-EX and I then Knock Out his Sableye. I wanted to Knock Out his Darkrai but was unable to get my one remaining Catcher. He sent up Darkrai, attach to it, plays a Virbank, and Ns me to two. I draw a Terrakion-EX and a Trubbish. He Knocks Out my Terrakion-EX and hits my other Terrakion-EX with Energy.

I topdeck a Juniper, my only one left, and use it. I draw a F Energy and attach it to my Terrakion-EX. I send up my other Terrakion-EX with Float Stone and Beach, drawing 3 Energy and Dowsing. I nearly decked out but still had 3 N left so I felt fine about that.

He uses Colress instead of Skyla, and could have used Skyla for Catcher to Knock Out my Terrakion-EX. Instead he uses Colress for 4 and afterward told me he misplayed. He could have won had he not misplayed. I end the game in my turn by retreating and Knocking him Out for the game.


Arjun 2-1
Jeremy 3-0
Michael 2-1

I apologize because I may have messed that up. I don’t think I did though.

Round 4 vs. Xander Pero w/ Plasma (2011 United States National Champion)

This round I am up-paired as well!

I start Terrakion-EX to his Absol and Deoxys. He looks really confused, and gets Absol out of the Active Spot by retreating to a Thundurus. He also benched a Kyurem. I get the turn one attachment and in addition bench two Trubbish. I play a Tropical Beach, but my hand was cluttered so I only drew three.

He attaches to his Thundurus and Colress Machines for a Plasma Energy on to a Kyurem. He gets a Blend WLFM Energy in the discard through means I cannot remember and uses Raiden Knuckle to attach it to Kyurem. I draw a Float Stone, and attach it to my Trubbish. I then Ultra Ball for Garbodor, use an Enhanced Hammer to get rid of his Blend on Kyurem. I attach to Terrakion-EX and Catcher the Absol. I then Juniper and get out a second Terrakion-EX and a second Garbodor (without a Float Stone). I Knock Out the Absol for my first Prize.

He sends up his Thundurus, plays a Virbank City Gym and a Hypnotoxic Laser, and uses Raiden Knuckle. I’m up to 90 and this point, but have the Switch to get me out poison and have the F Energy to Knock Out his Thundurus EX with Pump-up Smash. I go a step further by using a Colress and getting three F Energies and a Max Potion. In addition, I have an Enhanced Hammer to get rid of his Blend once more. I Pump-up Smash for Knock Out putting me down to 3 Prizes.

At this point, I am worried about N because I have not been thinning my deck as much as I should have. He sends up Kyurem, attaches a Prism to it, and uses Frost Spear putting my Terrakion-EX at 150 and my benched Terrakion-EX at 30.

I retreat to my Terrakion-EX with two and Max Potion away the 150 damage on my benched Terrakion-EX. I attach another F Energy to my Terrakion-EX which puts the total Energy count to three. I use the other Enhanced Hammer I was holding to bring his Kyurem back down to a single Plasma Energy and use a Professor Juniper, getting rid of an N. I draw my six… and get the Energy Retrieval! I also use Ultra Ball to get rid of two more N and get my third Terrakion-EX. I get rid of a Float Stone by attaching it to a Garbodor. I use Pump-up Smash, attaching two F Energy to Terrakion-EX.

He attaches again to his Kyurem and does 30 to my active Terrakion-EX and 30 to my benched Terrakion-EX with two Energy. I Knock Out his Kyurem through Pump-up Smash (and attach a third Energy to Terrakion-EX), to which he sends up a Deoxys-EX. He Ns me and uses Hypnotoxic Laser, but doesn’t put me to sleep. He ends his turn after using Colress Machine to a benched Deoxys-EX.

From the N, I get a Pokémon Catcher and an Enhanced Hammer, and then topdeck another Pokémon Catcher. I use the Enhanced Hammer, foreseeing a Prism Energy, and hit his active Deoxys-EX for 90. He then attaches a Float Stone to it, retreats to his other Deoxys-EX, attaches a Prism to it (yes! I was actually right!).

Then he does something I didn’t predict. He uses a Max Potion preventing me from winning my next turn. However, he is out of Plasma Energy due to three being discarded and one being prized. So I hit his active Deoxys-EX, and Knock it Out to win.


Arjun 2-2
Jeremy 4-0
Michael 3-1

Sadly, Xander lost the next 3 games due to various types of bad luck.

Round 5 vs. Jaquar Uruo (US) w/ Plasma

We all forget a game or four… right? Heh, no long description for this one, I just know I won 4-0. I’m pretty sure it went similar to Xander’s game, with me setting up and him using the Kyurem strategy unsuccessfully.


Arjun 3-2
Jeremy 5-0
Michael 3-2

Round 6 vs. Jacob Howard (US) w/ Darkrai

He goes first and starts double Darkrai to my Trubbish. He Ultra Balls away a Dark and an insignificant card for a Sableye which he benches and uses a Juniper, but misses the Energy attachment. I Float Stone my Trubbish, use Ultra Ball for a Terrakion-EX. I attach an Energy to it, and then use Level Ball for a second Trubbish. I play and use Tropical Beach to end my turn.

He attaches to his Darkrai and uses a Dark Patch to get an Energy on to his benched Sableye. He then uses a Hypnotoxic Laser to poison me before using Junk Hunt to get back the Hypnotoxic Laser and a Dark Patch. I draw and attach to my Terrakion-EX and then use a Heavy Ball to grab my Garbodor. I N but miss the switch, though I do hit the second Garbodor. In hopes of getting a Switch and a second Terrakion, I opt to use Tropical Beach once again.

Attacking the Sableye for 50 probably would have been pointless because if the deck runs correctly, I will be attacking for 90 for the rest of the game and if the deck runs improperly I’ve already lost.

He is unable to use Night Spear that turn because he misses the Dark Patch, but gets his Darkrai up to two D Energy. In addition, he plays a Hypnotoxic Laser, putting me to sleep. He Junk Hunts once again to end his turn. I draw, use the Switch I got from using Tropical Beach my last turn, and retreat to the Terrakion-EX. I attach an Energy to it, and use Bianca (quite unfortunate). I do get an Ultra Ball, but no F Energy. I Ultra Ball away an N and an Enhanced Hammer for Terrakion-EX.

At this point I was starting to get into the deck thinning phase, but I could not play my hand down any more. I did miss the Pokémon Catcher for the Darkrai EX knockout, so I just Knocked Out the Sableye.

My Prize plan was a Sableye, 2 Darkrai EX, and hopefully an Absol – not a Darkrai EX – for the final prize. He attaches to his Darkrai EX so he could use Night Spear and benches an Absol, which work well with my Prize plan. He also Dark Patches an Energy to his benched Darkrai EX before using Night Spear, hitting my benched Terrakion-EX for 30. I N and get two F Energy, a Trubbish, a Pokémon Catcher for my next turn, and a Colress.

He does exactly what I thought he would – sends up Absol. He Dark Patches once again and attaches. He then Catchers up my Garbodor without a tool and Beaches. I have the Pokémon Catcher to bring up his Darkrai, but for once I don’t topdeck what I need! I bench Trubbish and use Colress. I do get the Float Stone off of the Colress to retreat. I also have an Ultra Ball which I fail.

While that seems unimportant, I got to discard two Enhanced Hammers. Deck thinning is always important. He tries to keep the game doing by Catchering up the Trubbish I benched earlier, but I have the Professor Juniper, a small deck, and 2 Float Stone, 1 Switch, and the Dowsing Machine left.


Arjun 4-2
Jeremy what the… how is he? Wow 6-0
Michael 4-2

Jacob was a really cool guy though; he congratulated me for making Top 8 on day three. He also made Top 16 which is awesome!

Round 7 vs. Jordan Palm (AU) w/ Plasma

Oops. I can’t even remember what this guy looked like. He was probably super cool though.


Arjun 5-2
Jeremy 6-1
Michael 5-2

Round 8 vs. Ryan Moorhouse w/ Plasma (2012 UK National Champion)

This game was so relaxed because we both knew we had made cut. I went first, Terrakion-EX to his Absol and Deoxys-EX. I was able to get out a Trubbish via Ultra Ball and attach to Terrakion-EX, plus I had an Enhanced Hammer waiting. I used Skyla to grab the Tropical Beach, if I recall correctly.

During his first turn he benches Kyurem and attaches a Prism Energy to it. He then gets Kyurem active through Switch and passes after playing a Virbank City Gym. I draw, attach and use the Enhanced Hammer to get rid of his Prism Energy. I N and get the Float Stone but miss the Garbodor. I then Rock Tumble his Kyurem for 50. He gives up on his active Kyurem and uses a Plasma Ball to grab another. Ryan then attaches a Blend Energy to his benched Kyurem and passes.

I draw and use a Professor Juniper after attaching a F Energy to my Terrakion-EX, which is now ready for Pump-up Smash. I draw from the Juniper a Heavy Ball, a Garbodor, and another Enhanced Hammer. I evolve my Trubbish into Garbodor, bench the Terrakion-EX, and use the Enhanced Hammer to get rid of his Blend Energy.

Despite not drawing F Energy, I feel good about how the game is going, though I could be in trouble if he chooses to start attacking with Deoxys-EX. Nope. He sends up Kyurem, attaches a Blend Energy and uses Colress Machine to attach a Plasma Energy on to Kyurem as well, and uses Frost Spear for 30.

Now paranoid and without Enhanced Hammer, I use another Professor Juniper. Though I whiff the Enhanced Hammer, I get an Eviolite and a Tropical Beach, with decreases the chance of a Knock Out by his Kyurem. I hit him for 90. He attaches a Prism Energy to his Kyurem and plays Hypnotoxic Laser, and but after an N he is unable to get the Virbank City Gym. He does, however, get a third Kyurem. He also reluctantly benches a Thundurus EX.

At this point, my Prize plan is the active Kyurem, the Thundurus EX which he will most likely send up, and a Deoxys-EX (I figured he would want to use Helix Force). He Blizzard Burns putting me at 140. I have a Switch, and almost don’t use it because I usually want to use my Switches when I am asleep.

However, the math works out that if I don’t use Switch and he plays a Virbank City Gym, my Terrakion-EX is Knocked Out, so I use Switch. I had gotten a Bianca off the N he played, so while Bianca is rarely the Supporter I want (maybe I would have changed my list, actually), it’s better than nothing in this situation.

I get a F Energy and an N off of the Bianca. I could have Bianca’d for more than two, but felt holding on the Enhanced Hammer was more important than drawing an extra card. I attach the F Energy to my benched Terrakion. I Knock Out his Kyurem, happy I got rid of a Prism.

He sends up the Thundurus EX, attaches a Prism Energy, and uses Raiden Knuckle for 10… and to my surprise put a Blend on his Kyurem. Perhaps he figured I was out of Enhanced Hammer and he had the Energy and Colress Machine? Who knows; moving on.

I use the Enhanced Hammer I had been holding on to get rid of the Blend on his Kyurem, and use N. I draw a Juniper, a Fighting, a Trubbish, and an N. I attach the Fighting, bench the Trubbish, and Knock Out his Thundurus EX by using Pump-up Smash. He sends up Absol and attaches again to his Kyurem, and then uses Tropical Beach. I use Juniper and hit three Pokémon Catcher.

I continue to play down cards to thin my hand down in case of an N. I use Pokémon Catcher to bring up his Kyurem and hit it for 90. He attaches to Kyurem to hit my active Terrakion-EX for 10 and does 30 to my benched Terrakion-EX. I Knock Out his Kyurem and am down to 1 Prize. However, I feel ready for N at this point as I have 3 Catcher left, Dowsing Machine, multiple Supporters, and few unhelpful cards.

Luckily for me the game doesn’t have to come down to an N. He uses Colress, and I have the Pokémon Catcher for the KO on Absol.


Arjun 5-3
Jeremy 7-1
Michael 5-3

Also congratulations to Ryan for making Top 32!

Pairings go up and I am seeded 6th, against Sam Smith. I have a feeling he is sibon from SixPrizes but don’t mention it just in case. 3 of the 4 Terrakion Garbodor players made it in. Jeremy at third seed, me at sixth seed, and Arjun at 32nd seed! Michael, unfortunately, bubbled at 40th.

I’ll make this short because all of the games I play with the deck are pretty similar and boring.

Top 32 vs. Sam Smith (GB) w/ Darkrai

Game 1

I start double Terrakion-EX, and am relieved when I find out he is playing Darkrai. I get out a Trubbish and attach an Energy. This game doesn’t last very long, as I have a plethora of Energy and end the game with 3 Terrakion-EX, 2 with 3 F Energy and 1 with 2 F Energy, and a Garbodor with a Float Stone.


Game 2

I start just one Terrakion-EX this time, but he has a pretty slow start. He has a chance to get back in to the game by using Absol’s Mind Jack for a Knock Out on Terrakion-EX, but I draw out of my mid-game slump and get my second Energy for Rock Tumble. That seals the game as he has no Energy left on the field.

On his last turn on the game, he used Secret Sword for 50, which according to Sam was the best part of those games. Secret Sword in Darkrai OP.

2-0, 8-1

Top 16 vs. Alexander Weber (AT) w/ Plasma

Game 1

He has a fast start and takes an early lead with Kyurem, with me missing all of my Enhanced Hammer until turn 5. By that time he has taken 4 Prizes. His quick set up is at the expense of discarding 2 Plasma Energy and a Blend Energy. When I finally get set up, I am able to use my Enhanced Hammers to tie up the game.

With him being low on Energy, a win is still possible. A surprise Scramble Switch by him almost wins him the game, but I keep my Terrakion-EXs alive through Max Potion and Dowsing Machine for Max Potion. The Kyurem that he got a Blend, Prism, and Plasma Energy on through Scramble Switch faced two Enhanced Hammer.

I eventually win the game by Catchering up a Deoxys-EX and hitting it for 90, him retreating through Float Stone, and then me Catchering it again the next turn for KO.


Game 2

This game goes similarly to last game, except I get a Garbodor with Float Stone out while he is still at 6 Prizes. In addition, I am able to get out a second Terrakion-EX and a second Trubbish. Even though he has a fast start with a turn one Raiden Knuckle and Kyurem with two Energy, through the use of Enhanced Hammer I keep Energy off of his field.

I win by using Pokémon Catcher to bring up his Deoxys-EX, and using N to bring his hand down to three. He is unable to get a switch card, so I win by Knocking Out his Deoxys-EX for the last 2 Prizes.

2-0, 9-1

At this point I am the only Terrakion-EX/Garbodor player left and have to represent! However I am up against the deck that took down Jeremy – Gothitelle. The only way I can win is get three Garbodor out turn 2, but I still could lose. Remember what I said about taking the loss to Gothitelle? No regrets! I don’t really feel like going in to the games because they were kind of lame.

Top 8 vs Ian Whiton (US) w/ Gothitelle/Accelgor

Game 1

I get wrecked.


Game 2

I almost get the turn 2 two Garbodors with Float Stone plus Trubbish with Float Stone, but my third Trubbish I find prized when I Level Ball for it. At one point he has a field with double Gothitelle, Duskinoir, Accelgor, Gothita, and Musharna, so I make him use the Accelgor to attack me and then hope to keep him from getting Accelgor out by using two Ns in a row, but he does anyway.

My last hope to win is to use my final N to deck him out, but he, being smart, kept the count of his deck and hand at seven. The best part of this game was he spit out his nasty smelling gum…

0-2, 9-2

Ian seemed pretty cool though, and congratulations to him for making Top 4.

Could I have won it all in a different quadrant? I doubt it, because Kaiwan, Joey, and I believe Clement all used Tool Scrapper.


  • Top 8 at first Worlds.
  • ROGUE!!
  • The deck doing well for not just me, but also my friends.
  • Awesome opponents.
  • Having fun with friends at the event.
  • $1,500 scholarship (woah).
  • The deck performed exactly how I predicted it would.
  • Points for next year in Masters.
  • Jeremy for coming up with the deck and being open about it with me. I take absolutely no credit for the creation of the deck, though I absolutely did not just copy a list from him.


Nonexistent. How could I be upset?

Awesome, Helpful People Who Deserve Credit

Nathaniel Kaplan

Always there to bounce ideas off of, we chat on Skype daily about Pokémon and other things too. He is helpful with lists while not being overly critical. He is also just generally fun. Nobody has been as helpful as you through this season.

Ariel LaMarca

One of my Maryland buddies! We loan cards to each other a ton (though she loans me cards more often than I loan her cards). She even loaned me her two Tropical Beaches for a year and a half!

Everyone Else!

Also thanks to Dylan Dreyer, Christopher Schemanske, Orrin Wilson, Arjun Khadse, Jeremy Gibson, Ciaran Farah, Gabe Cherniske, Michael Catron, Kennan Mell (also for coming up the the pick your poison phrase which was quite convenient!), Rahul Reddy, Ishaan J, Robby W, Jimmy Pendarvis, Garrett H, Emmet W, Jon E, Trevor L, Brian R, Henry RC, Alex and Jonathon Croxton, Alex Smetana, Alex Snape, Jay Y, Jimmy McClure, Henry Prior, Nick N, Westin L, Collin H, Matias S, Aidan and Brianna Boyce, Sam V, and Lex D, (and anyone else I may have temporarily forgotten) for being flexible, playtesting with me, and being fun to hang out with at tournaments!

Reader Interactions

33 replies

  1. Aidan Boyce

    Congrats Glace! Making Top 8 with a rogue deck is awesome! :D

    Also Good luck next year in Masters!

  2. Dane_Carlson

    I find it kind of funny how you played against a player from the US in 7 of your 11 rounds. Isn’t this event supposed to be international? XD

    Anyway, great job, and I hope you do well at Worlds next year, too. :) +1

  3. Empoleon1107

    This deck would still be great if not for Virizion/Genesect.:-P

  4. Jeff C

    Great job with Garbodor and Terrakion EX!!
    I still like Garby for this coming year and may have to get a few more Terr. EXs to play with!!

    What would you change in your deck now that Energy Switch will be rotating out?

  5. Arjun Khadse

    Finally, the deck got the recognition it deserved! If Jeremy had beaten Ian (Which IMO he deserved to, even though Ian is a great player), Terrakion may have been able to take home a win! Then there’s me, scubbing in Top32, which could have easily been a T8 :/. Oh well. Nice job and good luck in Masters (YOU BETTER KEEP PLAYING)

  6. cf11

    Way to go man! I remember messaging you about 3 weeks before worlds and you mentioning all your “fail” Garbador rogues! I’m glad you found one that worked! I remember every time I faced a plasma or Darkrai in swiss they were stunned when i put down a Terrakion ex and announced shift gear pump up smash. Terrakion EX was definitely the most OP card of the weekend ;). Again congrats on the finish and you better make worlds again next year! I might go down to the states again for a regionals so hopefully see you then!

  7. Charlie Lockyer

    are you from new jersey? all of those guys except David and Michael go to my leauge. Arjun, how many YOLO moments did you have? answer: OVER 9000!!!

  8. Sam Vernooy

    I feel like I’ve already congratulated you, but just in case, congratulations on Top 8! This article was definitely more intricate than I expected, but that usually happens when you have to explain a rogue deck. Hopefully, I’ll see you in some Battle Roads soon enough… as Masters, lol.

    Oh by the way, I’m Sam V, in case you were wondering. And thanks for the, well, thanks in the last paragraph.

  9. joe adams

    i am not taking the time to read all the comments i would like if you could respond a update for league challenge (sorry if you already answered this ) you can tall me irl i am joe from leauge :P

  10. Jacob Howard

    nice article alex i dont think it would’ve made a difference but in our game i prized 3 dark patch thats why i had to beach congrats on top 8 though

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