Did Somebody Say Cradily?

Players Cup Positivity and a Cluster of Cool Concepts, Including Zacian/Galarian Perrserker, Cryogonal/Absol, Cryogonal/Cradily, Archeops, and Meganium Box

Hello again readers, I’m back with another article for you today. Leading up to writing this, I was holding out hope that we would receive an official Darkness Ablaze set list so I could talk about the new cards and maybe come up with some initial lists. Yes, we know most of the cards, but there will be a number of Pokémon V and VMAX excluded from the set, and I want to know all of the cards involved before exploring a new set. Instead, I’ll be sharing a lot of the concepts that I’ve built that I’ve had sitting in my PTCGO account for a while.

The Wall is well.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to play around with other decks very much since last time, because of the Players Cup and the importance of not wasting tickets. I’ve been grinding events with the exact Zacian/LucaMetal list I talked about last time, and it’s been going very well. The lists that I’ll be sharing today aren’t necessarily untested, but they haven’t seen the extreme levels of scrutiny that I would apply to a deck I would be sleeving up for a Regional or higher.

As for the Players Cup, on the day that I’m writing this, there was an announcement that they would be “fixing” the leaderboard issues, and I hope to see my correct Tournament Rep when I wake up tomorrow. Without a change and counting players who are unable to qualify, I’m currently sitting at 130 Rep, at around 70th place in NA. At the current moment, 256th is at 49 Rep, which leads me to believe that I will safely qualify. However, if things do get close, I can do nothing about it because I’ve burnt through every single Tournament Ticket on my account.

On the Players Cup as a whole, first and second impressions left a whole lot to be desired. However, it seems that with today’s announcement, the biggest issue that existed, which was the leaderboards, has been remedied. Yes, it started out very rough, but things have started to smooth over and look much better. I can understand being annoyed about this issue, but at this point, anything more than a passing annoyance feels like an overreaction.

The numbers have been crunched, and it looks doable to qualify by farming exclusively in June.

The second biggest issue is the number of tournament tickets required to qualify. To be frank, anyone complaining about tickets at this point just wants to be unreasonable. Zak Turchansky posted the math on how many tickets a person could expect to farm before the end of the Players Cup, and came up with around 171 tickets, AKA 21 tournaments. That translates to a potential of 168 Tournament Rep. That’s barely less than what I’ll end up with after starting with 240 tickets and being incredibly lazy and not farming the free tickets. If the final number ends up being less than 168 in North America, then no player should have any feelings of resentment because they started with no tickets.

My opinions are only based on the NA region, but they apply even more strongly to the other regions. The Oceania region is incredibly easy to qualify in, and LATAM is slightly harder. Europe is harder than the other two, but does fall short of North America. Literally any player with a PTCGO account in that region has the opportunity to qualify, and thus has no basis to complain about it if they do not.

Sorry, y’all.

However, there are still multiple other reasons to be discontent with the system, but the two “big” ones have been pretty much invalidated at this point. There’s still people who will be unable to even participate because of email issues, and obviously the underage player problem. The only group of players that I feel has the absolute right to be upset are those from the Asian countries that were formerly classified as being within the Oceania region. The last-minute announcement that they would be unable to play must really sting, and I do feel bad for them.

I’ve talked about this long enough, but I feel like most of that was worth saying. Time for us to get into the decks that I’ve messed around with on PTCGO.

To read this article, you must be an Underground member.

  • Already a member? Log in
  • Not a member? Join below ↓

Join Underground

Joining Underground gives you (and a friend!) complete access to our latest Underground articles plus their companion discussion sections to ask our writers questions.

New Underground (i.e., UG/★) articles are published on average 3× per week and are written by our staff of competitors + correspondents who report on an array of topics helpful for any Pokémon TCG player.

Choose a subscription:

Each subscription comes with automatic renewal, but you may disable automatic renewal at any time. If you are not completely satisfied with Underground, you can request a full refund within your first 30 days of joining—no questions asked.


Q. Who writes for Underground?
A. Our current writing staff consists of:

  • 12× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2003 · “El Table”
  • 9× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2009 · “Purple Princess”
  • 8× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2010 · “The Worst Schemanske”
  • 8× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2012 · “1 of each Pokémon > 1 billion lions”
  • 8× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2010
  • 7× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2012 · “All the way from Brazil”
  • 6× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2012 · “Consistency is a tech for every matchup”
  • 4× Worlds invitee · Playing since 2011 · “Bee Revenge is best served Cold”

Extended bios can be found on each author page.

Q. When are new Underground articles published?
A. There are on average three (3) new Underground articles published each week, Tuesday thru Thursday, at ~12 PM EDT (GMT-4). We schedule more content before major tournament weekends than after, so you may see four articles one week and then only two the next. Our objective is to help you prepare for events. A calendar of upcoming articles and events can be viewed here.

Q. What topics are included in Underground articles?
A. An Underground article could…

  • profile the best decks for an upcoming tournament
  • discuss how to play the crucial matchups
  • analyze decklists
  • talk about upcoming card releases
  • report on a first-hand tournament experience
  • offer tips for high-level play

…or include any combination of above! We cover a range of topics to help competitive players elevate their game. If you’ve never read an Underground article before, start here: 👉 these ones are free to read.

Q. Do your articles apply to Juniors and Seniors?
A. While our focus is on Masters play, our commentary is applicable for all age divisions. Many of our writers have earned Worlds invitations as Juniors and/or Seniors, and many have also coached Juniors and Seniors, so we have experience in navigating those divisions. Please ask if you ever read an article and would like to clarify how it applies to Juniors or Seniors.

Q. How can I ask your writers questions?
A. You can connect with our writers in three ways:

  1. in the discussion sections for each article,
  2. by messaging through our forum,
  3. or via social media, like Twitter or Facebook, if the writer mentions they are open to connecting that way.

We encourage you to reach out whenever you have questions.

Q. What happens after I join?
A. The current page will refresh and you will have immediate access to all of our Underground content.

Q. Can I upgrade or downgrade my subscription?
A. Your subscription can be upgraded, downgraded, canceled, or reenabled at any time. If you upgrade, you will be immediately switched over to and charged for the new plan, minus a credit for unused time on your current subscription. If you downgrade, you will be switched over to the new plan after your current subscription ends. To manage your subscription, visit your payment profile.

Q. How do I add a friend to my subscription?
A. To add a friend to an existing subscription, enter their SixPrizes username in the Shared Account field on your user profile. If your friend doesn’t already have a SixPrizes account, they can register free.

Q. How can I request a refund?
A. If you would like to request a refund for your subscription—for any reason—you can do so within your first 30 days of joining Underground. Contact Adam with your account details, and he will issue your refund shortly.

Join Now

Choose a subscription:

Reader Interactions

2 replies

  1. To view this discussion or leave a reply, join Underground.