My Top 5 Decks for the World Championship

Jeremiah Schmutz
August 06, 2018

What’s up FlipSiders?

I am excited for my first World Championship!  I have been extremely busy recently, but I am squeezing in testing wherever I can.  I considered almost twenty decks at one point or another, but I am down to under ten now.  A few are still very unrefined ideas, so I will have to put in a lot more concerted effort into deciding whether or not they are worthy contenders for Pokemon’s final tournament of the season.

For now, I have five lists about which I feel confident.  These lists are pretty well established and refined. I would feel comfortable playing any of them if the tournament were this weekend.  These are my current top five picks for the World Championship, in order.

5. Zoroark Magcargo

Zoroark Magcargo is the spiritual heir of Tord’s Zoroark Control deck we saw at the NAIC. The deck is extremely powerful, and it will completely control any game if it is not stopped.  Despite the control it gives you throughout a match, I cannot put it higher on my list. I suspect most players would have it in their number two or number three spot. The reason I have it at number five, is that I believe it has bad matchups against most of the other decks in this list. I also expect the deck to struggle against Rayquaza, which, while not on my list, I expect to be solved by a number of Day 1 players. One notable exclusion is Copycat. The card may very well have a spot in the deck, but I have not tested it yet.

ZoroMagcargoJeremiah Schmutz Zorua (52) Zoroark GX Slugma (23) Magcargo (24) Tapu Lele GX Mew EX Oranguru (114) N (105) Cynthia Professor Sycamore Guzma Brigette Delinquent Acerola Team Flare Grunt Evosoda Ultra Ball Puzzle of Time Rescue stretcher Field Blower Counter Catcher Max potion Enhanced Hammer Reverse Valley Parallel City Float Stone Weakness Policy Double Colorless Energy


4. BuzzRoc

BuzzRoc is a pretty known quantity.  I based my list on Ahmed’s NAIC list.  After discussing the deck with him, I believe the second Field Blower is a must.  Not only does it get rid of Weakness Policy, it allows you to turn off Garbotoxin. Drawing with Octillery and bringing up the right target with Blood Thirsty Eyes are simply too important to give up.  My issue with the deck is that it dead draws. Some games you just have a handful of energy. To the decks credit, it can somewhat function while dead drawing, but I don’t think that will be enough in Nashville.  Ahmed went to two Buzzwole GX, which I believe has some merit. The GX is very good against Zoroark and Gardevoir, and if you Beast Ring onto two GXs, you will almost always win the game.

BuzzRocJeremiah Schmutz Buzzwole GX Buzzwole (77) Rockruff (75) Lycanroc GX (138) Remoraid (32) Octillery (33) Diance Prism Star (74) Tapu Lele-GX Professor Sycamore Cynthia N Guzma Ultra Ball Max Elixir Beast Ring Super Rod Field Blower Float Stone Choice Band Brooklet Hill Fighting Energy Strong Energy Beast Energy Prism Star


3. Garbodor Spread

Quite biasedly, this is my favorite deck of the five.  I built this in quarter two, and got top 8 at a League Cup with it.  It has received a few more tools since then, most notably Tapu Lele and Shrine of Punishment.  Most spread decks have issues with Zoroark Decks that have access to Tapu Cure GX. I have pulled off healing 540 damage in a single turn with Max Potion, Double Puzzle, Max Potion, and Tapu Cure GX.  This deck is able to keep that combo (and Zoroark in general) in check with Garbotoxin. Trashalanche, the Tapu Leles, and Mewtwo are very strong against aggressive decks like BuzzRoc and Rayquaza. Garbotoxin, Tapu Koko, Tapu Leles, and Shrine of Punishment can help you answer control decks.  Trashalanche is also always a late game threat.

Garb SpreadJeremiah Schmutz Tapu Koko (30) Trubbish (56) Garbodor (57) Garbodor (51) Mewtwo (51) Tapu Lele (94) Tapu Lele (45) Tapu Lele GX Professor Sycamore N (105) Cynthia Mysterious Treasure Ultra Ball Nest Ball Counter Catcher Rescue Stretcher Enhanced Hammer Choice Band Float Stone Shrine of Punishment Double Colorless Energy Counter Energy Psychic Energy


2. Zoroark Garbodor

Admittedly, I have barely touched this deck, yet its power level is undeniable after Stephane Ivanoff’s back to back major victories at the NAIC and Valencia SPE.  Just like in the previous deck, Garbodor shows its utility in an array of matchups. Trashalanche is good against everything late game, and shines against the aggressive decks.  Garbotoxin really helps in the Zoroark mirrors. I have not put in the time to make any additions that would not detract from the overall power level of this list, so the list here is Stephane’s, unchanged.

Zoroark GarbodorStephane Ivanoff Zorua (70) Zoroark GX Trubbish (56) Garbodor (57) Garbodor (51) Latios (41) Kartana GX Tapu Lele-GX Brigette Cynthia Professor Sycamore N (105) Guzma Acerola Ultra Ball Puzzle of Time Mysterious Treasure Evosoda Field Blower Enhanced Hammer Rescue Stretcher Choice Band Float Stone Parallel City Double Colorless EnergyUnit Energy LMP


1. Gardevoir

Gardevoir is in the best place it has been since the beginning of the season.  Buzzwole was a huge threat, but most lists have moved away from heavy GX counts.  The Baby Buzz is much more manageable. That is not to say that Buzz is an easy matchup, but it is now only slightly unfavorable.  The two Zoroark variants that really gave it a hard time, ZoroRoc and ZoroPod, are seeing a reduced amount of play in favor of higher amounts of control.  Even the newer lists of Zoropod are running fewer Guzma, which should give Gardevoir the edge. Rayquaza is also very favorable.

But it isn’t just the meta that has changed.  Gardevoir gained access to Mysterious Treasure, so it can have higher consistency without the need of a stage 1 (Octillery or Sylveon GX).  Now, we can play all Psychic lower stages to find what we need when we need it. Oranguru is also enough with Premonition to find the one or two cards we need.  It is certainly a meta call, but it looks to be a great pick. 

GardevoirSeena Ghaziaskar Ralts (68) Kirlia (69) Gardevoir GX Gallade (84) Tapu Lele GX Mewtwo (51) Oranguru (113) Professor Sycamore N (105) Guzma Cynthia Brigette Ultra Ball Rare Candy Field Blower Super Rod Mysterious Treasure Choice Band Parallel City Double Colorless Energy Fairy Energy


Despite the fact that I have Gardevoir as number one, I believe an aggressive deck is usually the best call for Day 1.  This is advice I have heard from multiple players with a history of earning a spot in Day 2 via the Day 1 gauntlet. The format is a bit different than most tournaments, so having a deck that is streamlined and won’t tie is more important than ever.  Whatever deck you choose, good luck. I will see you in Nashville!

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