Hello everyone! I’m back again after only a short two weeks since my previous article.
Since I wrote that piece I made Top 8 at Portland Regionals with the exact same Primal Groudon list I featured towards the end of it. This accomplishment marks my 3rd Top 8 of the season and has finally gotten me the coveted invite to the 2017 World Championships in Anaheim! Today, I’d like to spend some time talking in-depth about my favorite deck in the Standard format: M Mewtwo.
I began testing M Mewtwo more seriously before the Anaheim Regional Championships after I saw Igor Costa’s run with the deck at the Dallas Regional Championship. After extensive testing of the concept, I quickly came to appreciate a lot of the nuances that go into it and the raw power of the entire Mewtwo line.
I love all of the built-in options the deck has, and especially believe that the ability to use Damage Change is one of the most tempo-swinging plays a M Mewtwo player can pull off. Being aware of when you should setup a game-breaking Damage Change or try to burst for a one-shot is one of the most critical aspects of playing this deck correctly. Doing things like attaching basic Psychic Energy over Double Colorless Energy when you don’t need the boost in damage and holding your Shrine of Memories until you plan on using Damage Change are incredibly important. Even the threat of Damage Change can cause your opponent to play differently to avoid being punished by it. Standard, for the most part, revolves around taking two shots, which gives M Mewtwo even more chances to take advantage of this incredible ability.
The deck even gets value out of the Garbodor line no matter the matchup because of Trubbish’s Acid Spray. It’s insanely powerful and can force a very annoying 7th prize in any matchup. Against Yveltal/Garbodor, the Decidueye-GX/Vileplume deck will try and utilize Beedrill-EX to remove Garbodor’s tool and re-activate Irritating Pollen. If they are then able to use Lysandre on Garbodor, that can often spell doom for the Yveltal player. However, M Mewtwo can actually attack with the Garbodor itself should it be trapped Active, and can use Offensive Bomb or even Acid Spray with Shrine of Memories! Getting maximum value out of every card in your deck is a huge reason why I love M Mewtwo so much. It creates a somewhat straightforward approach to every game plan: evolve and attach Energy. However, the versatility of your few Pokémon give you many different avenues to winning the game and allows you to react to your opponent in controlling the tempo of the game. This is what I would consider the skeleton of M Mewtwo:
Pokémon – 13
Trainers – 34
2 Trainers’ Mail
Energy – 11
2 Free Spaces
This is actually only 2 cards off of my Anaheim Regionals list, but I believe they are the only real flex spots in a M Mewtwo list. Due to this, the deck has a 58 card skeleton at the moment. I’ll go into a handful of options for the last two spots, as I believe they are very subtle, but incredibly important to going deep with M Mewtwo. They either have to solve Mewtwo’s own weaknesses against the meta, or, better yet, exploit other meta decks’ weaknesses.
1-1 Espeon GX
I played this cute tech at Anaheim Regionals right after Sun & Moon dropped largely because I believed it was good against Vespiquen, mirror, and could handle Giratina-EX Admittedly, it was also shiny and new with all of the Sun & Moon hype. While I loved playing the cards, I do think those two spots can probably be better handled at the moment. It’s also somewhat difficult to justify attaching twice to Espeon-GX over a Mewtwo at most points of a game.
It wasn’t as strong against Vespiquen as I wanted it to be because their Stadium of choice has largely become Forest of Giant Plants, which allows them to evolve straight to Vespiquen. This makes Divide-GX much less effective. Against mirror and Giratina-EX the same two spots could be taken by Mewtwo EVO and/or Hex Maniac to more effectively solve those problems. While I really enjoyed playing with Espeon GX at Anaheim, it might not be worth the space moving forward.
Mewtwo is a card I heavily considered playing at Anaheim for a lot of different reasons. Having a better non-ex in any matchup where you don’t need Garbodor is always helpful, and it proved to be especially effective in the M Mewtwo mirror when timed correctly. I think this card accomplishes a lot of the same things I was looking for from Espeon-GX while being a non-EX basic that attacks for one attachment. Plus, let’s be honest: playing one more Mewtwo makes the deck look even cooler and reminds me of the many 6 Lv. 100 Mewtwo teams a much younger Travis used to defeat the Elite 4 over and over again.
Yes, this is the other Mewtwo-EX in the Evolutions block. The only reason to include this Mewtwo-EX over the Damage Change one is because of its Energy Absorption attack. Not only is Energy Absorption a great option to have if you need a big M Mewtwo, but it is also a nod to some of the Lapras-GX buzz. Energy Absorption gives you a concrete out to all of their Energy removal, allowing you to beef up and ensure you never miss attacks. This leaves you able to power up multiple OHKO-capable M Mewtwo in a game. The matchup is pretty close without it, but the Energy Absorption option can be game-changing.
This card may seem a bit redundant with the inclusion of Garbodor, but it actually helps to solve some major weaknesses of both Mewtwo and Garbodor. Giratina-EX is very good against M Mewtwo if Garbodor can be taken offline, and what’s worse is that if the Giratina-EX player uses Lysandre to knockout a Garbodor with Chaos Wheel — no other tools can be attached to a follow up Trubbish. This prevents you from using a second Garbodor to shut off Renegade Pulse.
The Mewtwo player could try to pull some shenanigans with Damage Change and Shatter Shot on basic Mewtwo-EX, but simply playing a Hex Maniac and using Psychic Infinity for a knockout is much easier. Hex Maniac can also give you a turn of Items against Vileplume decks, which can be game changing if you’re unable to setup Garbodor before Vileplume hits the board. Solving the Giratina issue and giving you more outs to Vileplume are huge reasons why I really like Hex Maniac right now.
This is another addition I’ve been testing lately and have really been enjoying. I noticed in a lot of my closer matchups a huge part of them was whether or not I was able to pull off Damage Change at the exact moment I needed to in order to secure the win. Adding the 3rd Shrine has also helped to ensure it can stick around longer allowing me to threaten Damage Change more often, giving every Mewtwo a lot more longevity. Damage Change is also hilariously good against Mewtwo EVO, which has popped up in a few decks to counter M Mewtwo. If your opponent attacks into your M Mewtwo without taking a knockout, you can simply Damage Change and knock the little guy out, or take a Shaymin-EX with Lysandre.
This card is your hard-counter option for dealing with the Decidueye GX/Vileplume AOR deck. Being able to promote a Wobbuffet at anytime and regain access to Item cards is incredibly useful against Vileplume, and what’s best is that you can even attack with it! Wobbuffet makes for a solid clean up attacker on a damaged target, and can be especially useful after Damage Change as well. The major issue with Wobbuffet, much like Espeon GX, is that you have commit two attachments in order to attack with it. It’s often difficult to commit attachments to a Wobbuffet during a game when you usually want to commit as much as you can to your M Mewtwo. However, if you’re looking to hard counter Vileplume, this is definitely the best option at the moment. It’s even being teched into decks that can’t attack with it!
3rd/4th Trainers’ Mail
The addition of this is relatively straightforward. It’s for those out there who really want to try and make sure they don’t draw dead during a large tournament like Regionals. I think the difference between 2 and 3 Mail is relatively minuscule, and I generally prefer the additional tech card over the slight consistency boost. Generally, I think the amount of times the tech card will help me win games throughout a tournament will be higher than the amount of times I lose games due to consistency issues. This is by no means a bad addition, and I absolutely would not fault anyone for committing to consistency.
The logic of this addition follows a similar vein of reasoning to that of the Trainers’ Mail, but can also be specifically useful in any Ability-heavy meta. There are currently only a limited amount of Abilities in format that you care about shutting off, and often Super Rod can help bail you out of any issue that only having 1 Garbodor might cause (outside of prizing, of course). Even if you do prize your Garbodor where you might need it, you can hope to take it out of your prizes before it gets to be too late. Playing more copies of a card just because you might prize it at the exact time you need it always sounds suboptimal to me.
I think this matchup is favorable for the Mewtwo player once they figure out how to go about it. It’s important not to load up any single Mewtwo too heavily unless it’s reaching for a key knockout, as taking big damage from Lugia EX can be quite annoying. Damage Change is very good in this matchup, as reaching for 210 in one turn is incredibly difficult for Decidueye, so there should be many opportunities to capitalize on Damage Change. This can be huge for keeping a big Mewtwo going.
The most important thing here is getting setup before Vileplume ruins your day. Nailing the T1 Trubbish/Float Stone should be a top priority, and only use Hoopa-EX if you can Float Stone it immediately or in the case of an emergency (like needing to find a M Mewtwo to take a knockout). Hilariously enough, you can actually attack with Hoopa-EX if it gets stuck Active, or simply retreat it with a DCE. Hex Maniac, Wobbuffet, and the 3rd Shrine are all incredibly powerful in the matchup in their own way. Each card gives you more options to toppling the deck with the most hype, and a combination of two would all but ensure victory.
This matchup is actually pretty intricate and one I enjoy playing a lot. Darkrai is somewhat difficult to one-shot for M Mewtwo if they’re able to get a Fighting Fury Belt on their Darkrai. Because of the Psychic Resistance and the Fury Belt, Darkrai effectively gets 240 HP. Because of this, the Mewtwo player often needs to focus on optimal uses of Damage Change to control the trade and look for an opportunity to reach for a one-shot if it presents itself.
If they play the Dragon package of Giratina-EX and Salamence-EX, things can be a bit more complicated. Salamence is difficult to play around because Mewtwo loves using Hoopa-EX, but as long as you can limit yourself to 3 EXs until the Salamence is dealt with, you should be okay. Giratina-EX is also rather annoying if Garbodor cannot be online at the right time to take a knockout. As mentioned earlier, Hex Maniac can solve the problem with Giratina relatively easily. If your opponent realizes you play Hex Maniac and tries to use Giratina simply to hold Double Dragon Energy for the damage boost, don’t be afraid to use Lysandre for the knockout as long as Garbotoxin is active!
This is a matchup that depends almost entirely on the list piloted by the Yveltal/Garbodor player. I believe the matchup is generally favorable for M Mewtwo, but the Yveltal player has a slew of options to mess with M Mewtwo. Yveltal BKT can be effective if the Mewtwo player stalls Garbodor, but if they can get it up quickly or use Hex Maniac through Fright Night then Yveltal BKT dies relatively easily.
I’ve seen a Mewtwo EVO/Professor Kukui combination popping up recently in Yveltal lists in order to help against M Mewtwo and actually believe it is quite effective. M Mewtwo only needs 3 Energy on it to be OHKO’d by a little Mewtwo with Fighting Fury Belt and Professor Kukui. Common techs like Enhanced Hammer can really mess with the tempo of the game if they catch the Mewtwo player off guard. I even played 2 copies of Faded Town in my Yveltal list at Athens Regionals in order to help against all of the Mega decks. I believe that playing around many of these techs is important for the Mewtwo player in this matchup. Not making risky plays until you know the nuances of your opponent’s list is something I learned the hard way in Portland.
This matchup is all about getting Garbodor into play. Volcanion-EX attacks for 3 Energy, so it is pretty easy for M Mewtwo to OHKO. Thus, getting out a Garbodor ensures that they cannot trade with you effectively and makes the matchup pretty easy. Even if they can KO Garbodor, that turn of missing an EX KO is often enough to put you ahead, provided you don’t fall victim to consistency issues. This is a very straightforward game plan with minimal surprise, which is typical of most decks’ Volcanion matchups.
This matchup can actually be somewhat interesting if Damage Change shenanigans begin to occur, but is generally about who can setup and exchange better. 7 Energy between the two M Mewtwo is a knockout, and with both needing 2 to attack anyway, looking for the extra 3 is surprisingly easy. Damage Change can be involved, but if you do that then you most likely have 3-4 Energy and can be easily be hit with a return knockout or even a return Damage Change. Looking for opportunities to use a non-ex can be very helpful. Mewtwo EVO is very good here if timed correctly, but if used sub-optimally, you can be punished by Damage Change and lose a DCE while accomplishing very little.
This matchup can be difficult depending on their list. Mew-EX can actually put some pressure on you when combined with Vespiquen and Forest of Giant Plants, which can be quite scary. They can pull off Sky Return pings using Shaymin-EX while powering up Vespiquen’s Bee Revenge in order to avoid walking into Damage Change. Key tempo swings during the game will often depend on whether or not you can Damage Change if they go for a decent hit without taking a knockout. A common early game play is for them to go in with Zoroark equipped with Klefki in order to try and score an easy two-shot if you filled your Bench up a little bit too much for whatever reason. If you can pull off the Damage Change, you get the knockout, go through Klefki, and are now fully healed!
This is another very important matchup for Garbodor. If you’re ever able to pull off the Garb/Parallel combo then you basically win the game. Either card on its own can still be quite damaging, but the combo is generally what puts the nail in the coffin. Needing 4 for an OHKO is pretty common, and while I do think the matchup is close I think it is in M Mewtwo’s favor. Hex Maniac can also help shut them down early, but I think M Rayquaza loses a lot of consistency going from Expanded to Standard.
They have a serious type advantage over you. You don’t really have any business winning this matchup unless some things go seriously right for you. You kind of have to rely on N/Garbodor and hope they aren’t able to setup multiple attackers, but it’s not easy. Don’t forget to go for a deck out with Lysandre and Acid Spray!
I believe M Mewtwo to be one of the BDIF contenders of the Standard format. The only real autoloss is M Gardevoir, which is essentially a fringe deck. I think if I play this deck for Salt Lake City I’ll most likely be playing the Hex Maniac and 3rd Shrine of Memories because I feel they are the best cards for the current metagame.
Like other SixPrizes writers, I’ve become quite intrigued with the Quad-Lapras GX deck that’s been popping up lately. Fellow Hovercast member Eric Gansman even managed to make it to the Top 8 of the Puerto Rican Special event with the deck! You can learn more about the deck in his video about the deck. As always, feel free to check us out here:
I hope everyone has learned a little bit more about the ins and outs of M Mewtwo, how it can be adjusted moving forward, and why it is so powerful. As always, if you see me at Salt Lake City, please feel free to say hello! I met some friendly faces that recognized me from my writing at Portland, and I always love to meet readers. Until next time!
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