What’s in the Bag? – A Look at Seven Excellent Plays For City Championships

Hello PokeBeach readers! I am once again writing an article that is meant to help you succeed at your City Championship events. Whether you have already been to a few and are looking to wrap up your finishes, or are still waiting to crack your first Top 8, this article is for you! At this year’s City Championships many strange decks have seen bits and pieces of success. Today I am going to zoom in on these decks and give my personal decklist and thoughts for each.

So far, I have been to three City Championships, and have played interesting decks at each event. I can contribute a lot of my success to my opponents not knowing what I play in my deck, which makes it harder for them to make correct plays.

City One – Turbo Tina

This was the first City Championship in my area and most people were extremely confused when it came to deck choice. Yveltal-EX seemed like it would eventually assert its dominance upon the metagame and become one of the top decks. This meant that if I wanted to play a deck with a poor Yveltal matchup, such as Giratina-EX / Reshiram or Gengar-EX / Trevenant, I needed to do so immediately. These are the two decks I decided between for this first event. I eventually ended up picking Giratina-EX / Reshiram because I knew people wouldn’t expect it and because it had a much better M Manectric-EX matchup.

Here is the decklist I used for the event.

Pokemon (14)

4x Reshiram (RSK #63)

3x Giratina-EX (AOR #57)

2x Hydreigon-EX (RSK #62) 

3x Shaymin-EX (RSK #77) 

1x Hoopa-EX (AOR #36)

1x Bunnelby (PRC #121) 

Trainers (35)

4x Professor Sycamore (XY #122) 

2x Lysandre (FLF #90) 


4x Ultra Ball (DEX #102) 

4x Trainers' Mail (RSK #92) 

4x VS Seeker (PHF #109) 

4x Switch (DS #102) 

4x Acro Bike (PRC #122) 

3x Roller Skates (XY #125) 

2x Muscle Band (XY #121)

1x Professor's Letter (XY #123)


3x Sky Field (RSK #89) 

Energy (11)

7x Fire Energy (BS #98)

4x Double Dragon Energy (RSK #97)


Card Explanations


This guy is the key piece to getting the explosive start that you are aiming for in this deck. It makes it so that Ultra Ball can go grab a Shaymin-EXGiratina-EX, and Hydreigon-EX which makes getting the turn one Chaos Wheel extremely realistic.


Due to the aggressive nature of this deck, you are going to run out of resources extremely quickly. With cards like Double Dragon Energy being absolutely necessary in this deck, Bunnelby is a clutch tech to have around. In my testing before this event, I quickly realized that decks playing Xerosic could run you out of Double Dragon Energy near the end of the game. This means that even if you were absolutely dominating the game with only one Prize card left, you still would lose simply because you can never attack without Double Dragon Energy. Bunnelby absolutely solves this problem, and can help manage your other crucial resources, such as VS Seeker, in other situations.

Professor’s Letter

This is a card that seemed like a natural inclusion in this deck to me. In fact, I even had two copies of it when I first built the deck. I really like this card because it makes it so that a Trainers' Mail can turn into two Fire Energy. Whether you plan to Ultra Ball them away, or stack them onto the board with Reshiram’s Turbo Blaze Ability, this is a very solid card to have in the early game.

Possible Inclusions

This decklist is actually extremely tight, despite how it may look. You might be thinking “I can just cut those luck based Roller Skates and end up with a few more spots”, but I would strongly urge you not to do that. You absolutely need an explosive start with this deck, and even one Roller Skates heads within the first two turns should really help you out.

Escape Rope

I would consider taking out some Switch for one or two Escape Rope. I tend to really like Escape Rope in a lot of my decks, but I chose not to use it here because I noticed that Switch was simply better in a majority of my testing. Against decks like Yveltal-EX, I would much rather KO a Zorua or hit into an Yveltal-EX than hit into a Yveltal without killing it.



This matchup is one you will absolutely dominate if you get a turn one or turn two Chaos Wheel. At the Cities I played this deck at, I usually got a turn one Chaos Wheel, and never failed to get a turn two Chaos Wheel. Once you start Chaos Wheeling, your opponent can’t really attack you back. It usually just takes a Lysandre or two targeting down a Basic Energy attachment or a Flareon to seal up the game. In this matchup you really want to target down the Flareon because it allows them to attack with Vespiquen through the use of Blacksmith.

Tyrantrum-EX / Bronzong

Despite being a very different deck, this matchup is actually very similar to the Vespiquen matchup. Once you get that quick Chaos Wheel, your opponent will be digging for the one Basic Fighting Energy they play in their deck. During this time, you should try to Lysandre up as many Bronzong and Bronzor as possible to prevent them from chaining Tyrantrum-EX’s Dragon Impact attack. If they can’t use Dragon Impact consistently, you should be a favorite in this matchup.

M Manectric-EX

This is a close matchup if your opponent plays Enhanced Hammer and gets a turn two Turbo Bolt. They can Hex Maniac you turn one, to ensure you don’t get a turn one Chaos Wheel, which is fine. However, if they then proceed to Enhanced Hammer your Energy attachment for the turn, and then Hex Maniac again, you have probably been slowed down too much to win the game.

Yveltal-EX / Zoroark / Gallade

This matchup is the bane of this deck’s existence. They have all three aspects that this deck struggles against: non-EX Pokemon, plenty of Basic Energy, and the advantage in the Prize-race. All of these things make this matchup very hard to beat. At the event I used this deck at, I lost to Frank Diaz’s Yveltal-EX deck in swiss, and then Ben Sauk’s Yveltal-EX deck in Top 4.

Night March

This matchup is another one you should win with ease. Once again, this matchup is very similar to the Vespiquen matchup in multiple ways. Night March also struggles to attack once you Chaos Wheel. They will be scrambling to setup a quick Bronzong so that they can at least attack through the use of Metal Links. The key to success in this matchup is killing that Bronzong as quickly as possible.

City Two – Magnezone

Pokemon (15)

3x Raikou (BKT #55)

1x Pikachu-EX (XYPR #84)

3x Magnezone (BKT #54)

2x Magnemite (BKT #51)

1x Magnemite (BKT #52)

2x Octillery (BKT #33)

2x Remoraid (BKT #31)

1x Shaymin-EX (RSK #77)

Trainers (35)

4x Professor Sycamore (XY #122) 

1x Judge (BKT #143)

1x Teammates (PRC #141) 

1x Fisherman (BKT #136)

1x Lysandre (FLF #90)


4x VS Seeker (PHF #109)

4x Trainers' Mail (RSK #92)

4x Energy Retrieval (PLB #80)

4x Rare Candy (PRC #135)

4x Ultra Ball (PLB #90)

4x Level Ball (AOR #76)

2x Super Rod (BKT #149)

1x Professor's Letter (XY #123)

Energy (10)

10x Lightning Energy (XY #135) 

Card Explanations

The Magnemite Split

This is just personal preference. I like to give myself options when possible, even if the odds are small that something like this will play a significant role in a game. I did manage to get a ton of use out of the Paralysis Magnemite at the event I used this deck.

Two Super Rod

As funny as it may sound, I only played the second Super Rod at this event because I didn’t have a second Pikachu-EX. However, as the tournament carried on, I started to be glad that I had the second Super Rod. I often found it to be extremely helpful when it came to managing my resources. Another bonus was that I would have a Super Rod left even if I had to discard one while setting up.


This card is extremely good in the matchups where you are just trading KO for KO, such as Vespiquen or Night March. This card can go grab you an Energy Retrieval and a Raikou so that you can easily respond in this fast tempo Prize-race. In addition to this, sometimes an aggressive deck will take a KO on something small, such as a Magnemite or a Remoraid, and you’ll be able to Teammates for Rare Candy and Magnezone and get the crucial return KO.

Possible Inclusions

Two Flash Energy

In the Top 8 of this event. I actually managed to pick up a 2-0 win over a Lucario-EX / Crobat deck. Before the match, I thought I had an extremely slim chance of winning the series. However, I quickly realized that the matchup actually wasn’t terrible due to the raw power of Raikou. I found myself using a seven Energy Raikou to trade efficiently with this Lucario-EX. However, both games came down to him needing to have a Lysandre and a Strong Energy for the win on his final turn. With that being said, I was quite fortunate that he didn’t have what he needed either time. The match would have been much easier if I had just had even one Flash Energy in my deck because it could have made one of my seven Energy Raikou stick around for another turn.

Another Pikachu-EX

This is only something I would suggest in a metagame that is filled with Mega Pokemon decks such as M Rayquaza-EX  / Altaria, Primal Kyogre-EX / Zoroark, M Manectric-EX, or M Sceptile-EX. This makes it so if you Prize a Pikachu-EX, you should still be able to pickup the win. Along with this, having the second Pikachu-EX makes it so you don’t have to dig for Super Rod after the first one is Knocked Out.

Buddy Buddy Rescue

I would recommend playing this card if you happen to be playing against a lot of Night March and / or Vespiquen. It essentially acts as a fourth Raikou, except that it can also help you get out an Octillery or Magnezone in the early game if you are forced to Professor Sycamore one of them away.



This is the matchup that I lost to in Top 4 at this event, but the matchup is winnable. I contribute my loss to prizing Fisherman both games, and my opponent having a Gallade in his deck. Both of these occurrences are very bad for Magnezone, but they aren’t things that will happen frequently. In terms of the matchup, getting a turn two Thunder Lance with Raikou is pretty crucial. The goal in this matchup is to trade Raikou for Vespiquen, and then try to pick off one or two Shaymin-EX to win the game. They will be forced to use these Shaymin-EX in order to setup, but you don’t have to play down either of your Pokemon-EX cards. This gives you the advantage of being able to ignore their attackers and play for the Prize-count instead in certain situations.

Tyrantrum-EX / Bronzong

This matchup is definitely one of your easier ones. This game is once again just a Prize-race that you have an advantage in. They are forced to use Tyrantrum-EX to Knock Out each of your non-EX Raikou. This means you are trading a non-EX for a Pokemon-EX each turn, and you have more Raikou than they have Tyrantrum-EX. Their other main attacker, Giratina-EX, is a poor attacker in this matchup because it is unable to OHKO Pikachu-EX, Raikou, or Magnezone.

M Manectric-EX

This is yet another easy matchup. Pikachu-EX is definitely the MVP. I generally attempt to 2HKO the first M Manectric-EX using a Raikou, and then try to use Pikachu-EX to kill two more Pokemon-EX to win the game. The Manectric deck has a rough time OHKO’ing the Pikachu-EX, so it will likely stay on the board. Even if they happen to kill it, you can just recycle it using Super Rod and then take another KO.

Yveltal-EX / Zoroark / Gallade

Once again, this is a positive matchup for this deck. It is just a Prize trade that they can’t win, even with the use of Gallade. Sure, they could use Gallade to take a quick kill. But then you just return KO it with a Raikou and they will have trouble responding to it. All of their Yveltal and Yveltal-EX in this matchup are essentially unusable. They usually have to resort to attacking with Zoroark and Gallade, but they only have four Double Colorless Energy, which means they will eventually miss an attack. Along with this, you can pick off their Shaymin-EX for easy Prizes, which gives you yet another way to pull ahead.

Night March

In theory, there is no denying that this matchup seems poor. They have the ability to pull ahead in the Prize trade through the use of Hex Maniac, and they are a slightly faster deck than Magnezone. However, at the Cities I played Magnezone at, I was able to beat both of the Night March decks I played against. They just ran out of resources and started to miss attacks. This would allow me to pick up the win by powering through a small deficit at the end of the game.

This concludes the public portion of this article.

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