Many people on the Beach think this Pokemon has no viability in the meta and that’s quite sad. Already writing off a Pokemon before we can see its true power. I think this comes from people expecting cards to do all the work for the player rather than the player making the card work for them. A mindset shift is in order here people and I hope I’m able to cause that shift. With a lot of people eager to read this, I hope I cover all the data somewhat competently and that my jokes aren’t too advanced.
Many of you don’t know how much this Pokemon means to me or even the Pokemon community. Pidgeot is a fan favorite and people (at least from around my generation of Pokemon fans) get sentimental when the Pokemon is brought up – I mean, how many of you are still waiting for Ash to get his Pidgeot back? My inbox was blown up because people mention me that day. When the card was leaked, I went to work right away with a list on how to run this big bird. Let’s face it, I’m probably the best person to write this.
The list I’ll show for Pidgeot-EX isn’t your conventional “throw the deck” at the opponent list. My decks tend to be more surgical in nature and require patience so if you’re the type who wants to run through your deck in two turns and hit with huge damage as fast as possible, then play Mega Rayquaza because we’re living in the slow lane here!
A challenge to the readers. Take a shot of your favorite drink each time I mention Pidgeot.
At the Aviary – A look at the Best Bird
We’re going to start at the top here. The main thing you’ll notice here is Pidgeot is a colorless Pokemon, which means you can utilize many different kinds of support. We’ll cover Pidgeot-EX in great detail since it has more utility overall. With the tier one decks focused so heavily on doing large amounts of damage as quickly as possible, we’ll need to understand our options.
- Mirror Move
Mirror Move is a great utility attack that allows you to set the pace of play. If your opponent is attacking for low amounts of damage, you can do the same while you set up other Pokemon. This lets you keep the same momentum as your opponent, or keep them at bay in fear of a powerful strike.
I know what you’re thinking. “He use nine Energy, does he have the tenth?” Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I lost track myself. But being this is Mirror Move, the most powerful attack in the game and would take my last two Prize cards, you gotta ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky enough to attack?” Well, do ya, punk?
- Feather Lance
Feather Lance is a decent attack. It has a base damage of 80 as well as sniping a Benched Pokemon for 20 damage. If you’ve played the game competitively over the last few years, you’ll immediately notice the similarities to Darkrai-EX Night Spear, which is why some people call the attack Almost Night Spear. This attack lets you apply pressure to opponents who are moving slowly in their setup or not attacking to avoid Mirror Move. Feather Lance is a good way to make them do something they don’t want to, like attacking you.
- Mach Cyclone
The attack of M Pidgeot-EX. It has a base damage of 130 and gives you the option to move Pokemon around. Mach Cyclone alongside Feather Lance deals 210 damage, which will KO Pokemon with 210 HP. This is great because you can take advantage of your opponent’s inaction and take a two Prize card lead. Since switching effects are more common than they once were, it will be harder to disrupt with Mach Cyclone.
Pidgeot-EX is an average Pokemon with average stats, having 170 HP and two attacks. This is fine because Pidgeot is an average Pokemon to begin with. We never loved this Pokemon because of how well it performs – I’ll tell you that! While Pidgeot-EX is an average card, the magic of this Pokemon comes from the way it can gridlock opponents. Mirror Move, the first attack, can work wonders, and is one I’ve used many years ago! Unlike the Secret Wonders Pidgeot, Mirror Move cost a single Energy to use. I believe the focus of Pidgeot should be around Mirror Move.
Your goal isn’t to attack as soon as possible, it’s to punish the opponent for attacking. Pidgeot-EX is supported by support Pokemon like Magearna-EX. I can’t tell you how disruptive Zorua has been to me. That little fox should be bird food. Seriously, that Pokemon is much more annoying than it has any right to be. You’ll be on your way to a victory and then… Shenanigans!
Pidgeot loves Max Potion, which can deny opponents the KO. Assault Vest affects the math of decks that rely on Special Energy, which can be huge. Since Assault Vest reduces damage done to the Pokemon it’s attached to by 40 if the attacker has a Special Energy card attached to it, the most damage Mega Rayquaza can do is 200 and Xerneas can do is 200ish. M Pidgeot-EX with Assault Vest has an effective HP of 260, which is a number Mega Rayquaza can’t hit though. Sometimes your opponent may not want to attack you, which gives you a free turn – something Pidgeot likes. If you’re able, you can pressure them with Feather Lance – which I will call Almost Night Spear from here on out. Mega Pidgeot can use Shrine of Memories to gain access to Mirror Move. The perk of M Pidgeot-EX is you get access to its 220 HP, which means you can takes much larger hits.
Pidgeot has a Resistance to the Fighting-type, which isn’t all that great right now. For example, Strong Energy makes attacks used by the Fighting-type deal 20 more damage and the effect stacks. At best, the Fighting Resistance ignores one of these Energy cards – breaking even with base damage and that sucks because the Fighting-type is powerful. However, there is a silver lining here. Fighting decks need to have access to Strong Energy, which is a Special Energy card and that makes Assault Vest useful. Between Assault Vest and the Resistance, we can reduce a total of 60 damage. The best thing here is since most Fighting-type Pokemon have two Strong Energy attached to them, we can still hit our -20 damage Resistance. Unfortunately, Pidgeot does have to worry about Garchomp. While Garchomp is a Fighting-type Pokemon, those jaws are backed by Strong Energy and uh, dragons eat birds. There aren’t many Fighting-type decks out that thanks to M Mewtwo-EX and M Gardevoir-EX running around.
Finally, Mega Pidgeot also has other perks than being a hit sponge. It also has a free Retreat Cost. This means that Mega Pidgeot can’t be stuck in the Active spot and can choose to be there by choice. To be honest with you, M Pidgeot-EX is pretty busted. It has 220 HP, a Resistance, an attack that deals 130 with optional disruption and a free Retreat Cost. Before we get to the list, we should go over the pros and cons of both Pidgeot-EX and M Pidgeot-EX, to better understand them.
- Mirror Move offers competitive damage in this meta for one Energy.
- Can deal snipe damage to setup for other knockouts.
- Has Resistance to the Fighting-type, which is powerful.
- Has a low Retreat Cost.
- Has synergy with Max Potion and other healing cards.
- Can be played by itself without the mega.
- Shares the same stats as Rayquaza-EX.
- Method of play makes it hard to use its larger attack.
- Indirectly countered by Zebstrika thanks to Mega Rayquaza.
- Weak to Psychic Infinity due to heavy attack cost.
- Has a massive 220HP, allowing it to tank hits.
- Has synergy with Shrine of Memories, allowing access to Mirror Move.
- Retains its Fighting-type Resistance, making it more effective against that match thanks to its natural bulk.
- Has a free Retreat Cost, meaning it can’t be locked in the Active spot.
- Attack deals heavy damage with optional disruption.
- Still shares the same stats as M Rayquaza-EX.
- Method of play makes it hard to use its larger attack.
- Mach Cyclone isn’t as disruptive as it once was.
- Reliant on Shrine of Memories.
- Still hard countered as Pidgeot-EX by Zebstrika.
- Weak to Psychic Infinity due to heavy attack cost.
Taking the Bird Out to Hunt – The List
Now that we know what both these Pokemon are good and bad at, now we can make the deck better. The deck list is super tight right now. Only a handful of spots open for techs but what’s below is a must.
This is your main attacker, so we want the absolute max number of birbs. Three Mega Pidgeot is good so we have access to them when we need them. It’s also the standard count for decks running Mega evolved Pokemon as their main attacker. I’ve seen too many games where a player had both of the Mega evolved Pokemon prized. We’re going to avoid that. Since we aren’t as reckless with our resources as the other decks we’ll cover, we don’t have to worry about discarding too many burds.
Octillery may be slow but he holds his own weight. I like Octillery for a few reason. The first reason is consistency. The second reason being he doesn’t give up two Prize cards like Shaymin-EX. The final reason is Octillery makes you N proof. If your opponent plays N and forces you to a hand of two or less cards, Octillery will bring you back up to five cards.
Magearna-EX is a necessary card but is a tech so if you don’t like it, you can remove it but my play style is to avoid as many shenanigans of attacks as possible. A nice perk is it can OHKO M Gardevoir-EX while it will be almost impossible for them to do the same in return. Magearna-EX also has above average HP for a Pokemon meant to be a Bench sitter and it can turn any matchup with Metal weak Pokemon into a more favorable game.
3 Professor Birch's Observations, 2 N, 2 Lysandre
I tend to like this distribution because I can conserve resources while seeing new one. Three Birch and two N gives us shuffle draw while we supplement this with Octillery. N is pretty standard so no need to talk about it but I do want to note you’re able to N yourself and your opponent to a low hand size and then draw back to five cards with Octillery. Professor Birch is what I replace Professor Sycamore with but with good reason. Two Lysandre lets us move around Pokemon and pick up some key knockouts on threats on the Bench with Mirror Move.
1 Professor Sycamore
Decks I build don’t like it when the things they need to work are discarded. Playing four Sycamore in our deck would mean we have a higher chance of losing key cards like Max Potion, VS Seeker and our Pokemon Tools. With four VS Seeker, we can always grab it.
2 Pidgeot Spirit Link
I opted for two copies because you’ll have a few turns where you can Mega evolve freely and end your turn. Anything more than this is probably overkill.
These cards need no introduction. These cards are staples in every deck in the format simply because they are so good.
4 Max Potion
Anything less than four Max Potion is a poor idea as the forth was always needed in testing. The attack you’ll be using cost one Energy so you’ll never feel like any are actually being wasted if you have to play one to heal a Pidgeot earlier than expected. Since our strategy depends on healing, it’s absolutely imperative that we have access to these when we need them.
2 Assault Vest and 2 Float Stone
Assault Vest is a way to avoid getting knocked out in one by Pokemon with Special Energy attached to them as well as providing extra protection to Strong Energy. Two copies are a decent amount so you don’t get bogged down by them. Two Float Stone are here to prevent Octillery from being stuck in the Active spot. We could run Switch but Float Stone is a gift that keeps on giving.
I wish it could discard any Trainer card in play. This is more of a tech, like Magearna, so it can be removed. I also like how you can draw a card if you discarded a Stadium card. It opens plays where you can discard a Parallel City, draw a card and then play your own Parallel City.
Super Rod is useful because we discard Energy through Max Potion and this is a way to recover those cards, as well as any Pokemon that may get discarded or knocked out along the way. Another card that may be useful is Brock’s Grit but it’s a Supporter. It’s completely up to you and is a card worth looking at. It’s like two Super Rods in one, which we can get back via VS Seeker!
3 Shrine of Memories and 2 Parallel City
Shrine of Memories gives Mega Pidgeot access to Mirror Move, which is your most powerful weapon against a hard hitting meta. Parallel City also means we can disrupt decks like Mega Rayquaza or Rainbow Road. I come from a time where it wasn’t uncommon to see decks with six to eight Stadium cards. With five Stadium cards and Paint Roller, we should have no issue winning Stadium Wars. If we win Stadium Wars against Mega Rayquaza or Rainbow Road, we severely hinder their damage output.
4 Double Colorless Energy and 6 basic Metal Energy
Pidgeot can attack quickly with Double Colorless Energy so we need four. Basic Metal for everything else. Gives protection as well with Magearna-EX.
Tools of the Trade – Picking Techs
Pidgeot can handle itself decently but it benefits from help. The deck list is tight and from what was listed above, you could realistically remove a handful of cards.
I know most decks want to include this card but it’s a bit too random. We’re birds here people, we search for what we want! You can run this card if you want more card draw but the space is better used for more utility. This card should be considered if you don’t see the need to include many tech and you want a faster deck.
Seriously, how many of you even know this card exist? This card allows you to pick up your Energy from any of your Pokemon and put them into your hand. Before you make a Max Potion play, you can use this card, pick up the Energy from your bird and then heal it. You still have access to Mirror Move and your Energy all because of one card.
You’ll often discard at least one Energy card and sometimes you’re going to remove less damage than is needed to avoid a KO the next turn. It could be a waste of a Max Potion to heal like 40 damage. Since the card heals 60 damage on a Pokemon, in some matchups this can turn a 2HKO to a 3HKO, like with Mega Scizor.
Mega Turbo allows you to reattach Energy you discard through Max Potion to your Mega Pidgeot. Most of the time, you’ll be stuck to one Energy attachment a turn. Mega Turbo lets you make plays where you can play a Double Colorless Energy and then Mega Turbo to attach a basic Energy to your Mega, letting you use a much more powerful attack. I highly recommend this card for the deck considering the synergy it has with Max Potion. The same thing can be done with Energy Retrieval though you give up your normal attachment for the turn.
Birds love to cache things – whether it’s food or something shiny. Puzzle of Time is that shiny thing. It allows you to recollect spent resources, like Max Potion or Supporter cards. More importantly, you can get back your doubles. With these in your deck, you can even cut back on some of your four of or lesser tech cards. With that free space, you can also add some other cards of interest.
Skyla loves birds and she allows you to find exactly what you’re looking for. When players draw cards like crazy, they are looking for one or two cards – often time discarding a lot of resources in the process. Why not cut out the middle man and get exactly what you’re looking for!
I have a love-hate relationship with Pokemon Ranger. Most deck capable of Evolution can normally deal with blocking effects that Pokemon such as Glaceon-EX and Jolteon-EX put into effect. The only card I can think of that makes this card my 61st choice is Regice. Resistance Blizzard prevents all damage and effects of attacks done by Pokemon-EX, which you can’t play around it. Hex Maniac has more utility than Pokemon Ranger and can slow down opponents. A turn one Hex Maniac prevents them from using Hoopa-EX and Shaymin-EX and can prevent Mega Rayquaza from making a comeback through Dragonite-EX and Hoopa-EX after a Parallel City play. If you’re using Garbodor, then you don’t need this card but with the game becoming more Ability based, having a few copies ready should be helpful.
Another card Pidgeot loves. Remember those free turns we talked about? Not many player are going to be willing to attack into a Pidgeot with a Bursting Balloon because it effectively makes Mirror Move deal 60 more Damage.
I do like to plan for things like Ariados since Magearna-EX don’t work for Abilities. This can deny your opponent the KO since it heals 60 damage but she also heals all Special Conditions on your Pokemon as well. It will cost your Supporter for the turn but it will leave you in a much better spot should you run into any decks that rely on abilities for Special Conditions.
I suggest this card because we play with four Double Colorless Energy and from time to time, we’ll be discarding them and need a way to get them back. Unlike Puzzle of Time, we don’t add the cards to our hand but shuffle them into our deck. Special Charge is a little slow but it’s another utility card worthy of Pidgeot. This should be considered if you don’t want to dedicate four deck spots to Puzzle of Time.
I hate Energy denial. Next to Hypnotoxic Laser, these cards are the worst thing about this game. It feels like you can’t do anything when these cards hit the table but cringe, however these are a great set of utility cards that help out Pidgeot. Having a few of these in your deck can improve matchups against decks like Mega Rayquaza, Mega Mewtwo, Rainbow Road and more importantly, Darkrai-EX / Giratina-EX since discarding Double Dragon Energy removes 40 damage from attacks similar to Dark Pulse. We have the deck space for a combination of the above so if you like Energy control tactic, then you will love this cards in this deck but if you like this kind of play style, then you’re probably playing Mega Scizor anyway and in that case, rip.
Birds happen to love trash so Garbodor is a perfect partner for Pidgeot! First, you’ll have to remove a handful of cards though. Garbodor allows you to have a much easier time against other matchups such as Volcanion-EX, Greninja BREAK and Vileplume, which is a Pokemon that can render our strategy useless.
I feel I should put this card in as a tech option rather than main decking it. It’s a good option to have since it fits your Energy line and isn’t a bad Pokemon to put extra Energy cards on if you have a free turn. It’s also a non-EX attacker. Its first attack can stall for a turn to buy you time to set itself up or at least stall for a turn to get an extra card draw. Revenge Blast is a good attack since if your opponent took any Prize cards off you, you have a 90 damage attack, which Pokemon with a Metal Weakness don’t enjoy.
It’s a personal preference of mine to prepare for decks that may give problems. Psychic Infinity is a powerful attack and it can easily get out of control. Mewtwo can attack for a Double Colorless Energy and does 20 for each Energy on the Defending Pokemon. The only thing I don’t like about Mewtwo is it isn’t a hard counter in the same vain Zebstrika is. If you want to KO an M Mewtwo-EX in a single hit with this card, your opponent needs to have at least five Energy attached to it. If you miss the knockout, they simply Damage Change your Mewtwo and KO it.
Pidgeot against the Meta
Your first turn should look like this. If you open with Pidgeot, try to find another one and bench it. If possible, attach an Energy to the Benched Pidgeot and not the Active. If this isn’t possible, then don’t attached to the Active Pidgeot. Reason is you want to see what your opponent will do and if you take a heavy blow, you’re not wasting Energy since you’ll have to play Max Potion. If you start Remoraid, you have the Wild River attack, which lets you move your Remoraid from the Active spot to your Bench, which should be replaced by a Pidgeot-EX or M Pidgeot-EX. For the first few turns (depending on the match), you don’t have much issue draw-passing or ending a turn with Mega Evolution.
As an added bonus, I’ll list what cards are dead for a matchups under the card art. These won’t include any possible techs. These cards might not necessarily be dead cards in the match but something along the lines of being of little use to dead.
Vs. M Scizor-EX: Very Favorable
Scizor is a bug and birds eat them. Simple nature here. M Scizor-EX is a deck that is pretty straight forward and unlike Pidgeot-EX, it doesn’t do cute against you. Scizor don’t have options to OHKO and has to attack you. Their biggest attack against Pidgeot is 120 damage, which you can respond to for one Energy. You can heal off the damage they do effectively and if you chose to run Super Potion, you force them to 3HKO your Mega Pidgeot.
Scizor can run Max Potion but they aren’t built to exploit it. Each time the Scizor player uses a Max Potion, they need to have an Energy card and Mega Turbo in hand to attack you again. You simply don’t have this issue since you can respond for a single Energy. You have more healing options than the Scizor player does. Hammers are annoying here but you don’t care if they flip heads on Crushing Hammer or if they play a Team Flare Grunt since you’re discarding Energy through Max Potion anyway. Having your Energy discarded does make using Pidgeot’s bigger attacks harder to use because the Scizor player wants to discard your Energy but you have options to get them back.
If The Scizor player is using Shield Energy, you can reduce their damage further with Assault Vest. If they want to go the Metal Wing route and they have Shield Energy attached and Reverse Valley in play, they can reduce your damage by 40. You play five Stadium cards so you should be able to remove the Stadium. With these cards, Pidgeot can be forced to 3HKO Mega Scizor, which is hard with all the Energy denial. You want to manage your resources carefully here. Mega Scizor can discard your Double Colorless Energy and your Stadium cards. They play Puzzle of Time as well, which means they have more opportunity to disrupt you. Magearna-EX does prevent Iron Crusher from discarding your Double Colorless Energy though they can still discard them through Trainer cards. Overall, you don’t worry about much in this matchup.
Vs. M Mewtwo-EX: Even to Favorable – Depends on techs – Example Match
There isn’t any real way to approach this matchup. M Mewtwo-EX can go wild, making you ask yourself what happened here. A Mega Mewtwo with seven Energy cards between both Pokemon will KO a Mega Pidgeot so you need to play this smart. With cards like Mega Turbo, you need to make sure you have as little Energy in play as possible. Damage Change does make this interesting because Mega Mewtwo doesn’t care about Max Potion and if you have Magearna-EX in play, you give them a free option to heal. Pidgeot can’t OHKO a Mega Mewtwo easily. Mirror Move can deal 210 damage in this match but you need perfect math and Energy management to hit that number. Assault Vest does help Pidgeot’s staying power, forcing them to have at least two more Energy. If you choose to run Mewtwo, for a single Double Colorless Energy, you can OHKO a Mega Mewtwo that’s getting too cheeky, which can put the matchup more in Pidgeot’s favor.
This matchup can be slightly unfavorable because of how easily M Mewtwo-EX can recover. A Double Colorless Energy with a dream and two Mega Turbo gives Mega Mewtwo 120 damage and since we both play Shrine of Memories, you have to respect Damage Change.
Energy denial can work well here since you want to avoid getting knocked out in one hit. This can also slow them down and make them spend resources like Mega Turbo early, making them less likely to appear later on in the game where they can do the most damage. You want to stay within a 2HKO range the whole match and Mirror Move back and 2HKO them. A good Mewtwo player would adjust but you have options to defend against it.
Vs. Volcanion-EX: Unfavorable
This is an interesting matchup. Assault Vest is useless and Fight Fury Belt plays with Pidgeot’s math. Steam Up can let them deal up to 120 additional damage, allowing Power Heater to deal up to 140 damage – 150 with Fighting Fury Belt for a single Energy while accelerating two Fire Energy to their Benched Pokemon. With no effective way to discard Pokemon Tools, you can’t OHKO baby Volcanion with Mach Cyclone or Mirror move. If they manage to get four Steam Up off, they can use Steam Artillery for 220 damage, which will KO a Mega Pidgeot.
Hex Maniac makes this match a little easier since you can slow them down a turn and Garbodor makes this match easy since they lose potential damage. My problem with Hex Maniac in this matchup is the same with the Greninja match. You simply can’t play enough of them to do anything meaningful. Sure you can stream them with VS Seeker but this isn’t always an option. Each time I play against these decks, I wish the list ran Garbodor. With Mega Scizor being a popular deck, you may run into this deck so it’s a good idea to at least run Hex Maniac to try to hit their damage output. You can disrupt with Mach Cyclone and perhaps get something stuck in the Active spot. N can also make it harder for them to do the damage they want as well since they have less cards to work with.
Volcanion-EX does 30 more base damage and can score a knockout with one less Steam Up. Still play the matchup as you normally would but watch out for the larger attacks. If they can get a free turn to KO a Pidgeot-EX, then the match is pretty much lost since you want to have that 220 HP bulk. The magic damage number seems to be 190 in my testing and each time this was used to KO a Pidgeot. If you don’t miss a beat, then you should be on the winning end. Parallel City can work wonders against a setup Bench.
Vs. M Rayquaza-EX: Slightly Favorable – Example Match
This matchup is favorable for a few reason. Parallel City, Assault Vest and Hex Maniac. Emerald Break can do a max of 240 damage and since Mega Rayquaza will more than likely have a Double Colorless Energy attached to it, which means they can only do 200 damage, meaning Mega Pidgeot survives and has a 200 damage Mirror Move. Rayquaza has a good early game so the ability to disrupt them early is key here. Once Assault Vest comes down, it gets harder for them to deal with Mega Pidgeot.
Sky Field, their Stadium of choice means they can have eight Pokemon on the Bench so you’ll want to get Parallel City down. With the release of Dragonite-EX and Brock’s Grit, keeping Pokemon in play wouldn’t be too hard for them so you want to combo your Parallel City with Hex Maniac to prevent them from getting Pokemon back down quickly. Another thing is the Rayquaza player is going through resources quickly and may end up discarding important cards to Professor Sycamore and Ultra Ball which means they could have less Sky Field to work with. Assault Vest is a thorn in Mega Rayquaza’s side because it can’t OHKO you with it attached. They can get three basic Energy attached to M Rayquaza-EX thanks to Mega Turbo to get around Assault Vest. You don’t want to see it happen since you now need a way to deal with the big bad dragon.
Almost Night Spear has utility here as well because 200 damage in this matchup is a magic number considering Mega Rayquaza has 220 HP. A Pidgeot with Assault Vest can only take 200 damage from Emerald Break if Mega Rayquaza has a Double Colorless Energy attached to it. This is relevant because if you hit the opposing Mega Rayquaza with Mirror Move and then the next turn Lysandre up another one and use Almost Night Spear, you can place that 20 damage on the Benched Mega Ray and KO it while setting up the one in the Active spot for Mirror Move. They don’t have your healing resources so each hit they take puts them on a clock. While this match is favorable for you, things can get out of hand for Pidgeot if you miss key cards. You bank on the Ray player burning through their resources, which is likely because they want that fast Emerald Break. I should mention that some M Rayquaza-EX decks play Raichu or Zebstrika for the mirror and could make things more complicated then they need to be but if you can remove them before they become a threat, then you should be fine but it all comes down to one thing. If your opponent isn’t prepared to deal with Assault Vest then your Mega Pidgeot can shake those tail feathers all up in Mega Rayquaza’s face and there isn’t much he can do but sit there and watch.
Vs. Darkrai-EX / Giratina-EX / Yveltal-EX / Garbodor: Slightly Favorable – Example Match
This matchup requires a lot of skill to play and outcome differs depending on techs. If you run Garbodor, you don’t have to worry Giratina-Ex’s Renegade Pulse but you’ll have to commit hard to getting Garbodor into play. If Garbodor goes down, your chances of winning become much lower since you’ll want M Pidgeot-EX’s bulk to better tank hits and fire back with Mirror Move. This is funny because if your opponent plays their Garbodor, which they may when they see your draw support is Octillery, then it gets better. This match is awkward that way. Playing hammers and Puzzle of Time will give options to control your opponent’s Energy, which make Darkrai-EX much more manageable to deal with.
Hammers are good here because you can discard Double Dragon Energy, which also reduces Dark Pulse’s effective damage by 40. This deck can have explosive turns thanks to Max Elixir. They can easily get four or more Energy in play in a single turn. Three hits on Max Elixir and a DDE attachment to Giratina-EX means Darkrai-EX can deal 120 damage. You’ll want to play this matchup with Pidgeot-EX as much as possible and only using M Pidgeot-EX if something opens up though this depends largely on board state. Reason for this is Giratina can’t OHKO Pidgeot-EX and it gets around Renegade Pulse. You’ll just need to control the Energy drops so Darkrai-EX doesn’t ruin your day. They need nine Energy in play in order to KO Pidgeot-EX in a single hit (eight if Darkrai-EX has Fighting Fury Belt) and 11 Energy total to KO Mega Pidgeot. This is a lot of Energy needed considering they only play something like 12 Energy. When you KO a Darkrai-EX, they lose those Energy, which is less damage to worry about. Same is true with Giratina-EX. You drop that bad boy (or girl, we aren’t sexist here) and Darkrai loses 80 damage, assuming it had at least four Energy attached. The deck does play Yveltal to get back Energy from the discard pile. Yveltal-EX is another Pokemon that can be a problem if left unchecked but isn’t normally a problem.
The biggest factors in this matchup is your ability to heal and your opponent’s ability to block Mega Pidgeot. They struggle to OHKO Pidgeot, which is what you want but if you have Mega Pidgeot in play then your opponent can attempt to stall you while they setup. This matters because you’ll end up wasting Max Potion and not being able to attack. Each turn comes down to choosing between Skyla, Hex Maniac and Lysandre. This sucks because you want to do all of these things but can’t. Pokemon Ranger is also useful since it turns off Chaos Wheel but I would almost always want to play Hex Maniac over it, since getting the damage down is more important. Almost Night Spear is good to get some damage down and should be considered. Mach Cyclone is hard to use because all they do is send up Giratina and it sits there. You’ll need a few Hex Maniac to get around it if you’re not playing Garbodor. Pidgeot with Energy denial and some way to stop Abilities is what puts this matchup in your favor.*coughDiancie-EXcough*
Vs. Garchomp/Talonflame: Highly Favorable – General Idea of a Match
This matchup is pretty odd. Birds vs Dragons and normally dragons come out on top. They are quick, mean and powerful – all of which Garchomp is. The biggest thorn in the Pidgeot’s backside is Bite Off, which deals 80 damage. I know 80 damage isn’t that great, considering you resist the hit but this attack also does 80 more damage if the Pokemon being attack is a Pokemon-EX, which Pidgeot is. That’s 160 damage before Resistance. Why is this a thorn is Pidgeot’s backside? Well, that’s because of Strong Energy. Strong Energy allows the attacks used by Fighting-type Pokemon to deal 20 more damage. Well, that ignores the Resistance, getting them back to 160 damage and a second Strong Energy allows them to deal 180 damage. This will knockout Pidgeot-EX in a single hit.
So, what do you do? Well you place a Pidgeot-EX in a cage and feed it to Garchomp. Sure, that Pidgeot will end up a pile of Garchomp poop in the desert but its sacrifice will not be in vain. Getting an M Pidgeot-EX in play with the Assault Vest means they can’t KO you in a single hit and while you reduce their damage by 60, they can still do enough damage to you to be within Mirror Move KO range. Also, Garchomp is also within KO range for Mach Cyclone so if they spend a turn doing Turbo Assault, you can drop a DCE and KO it. Each Garchomp you take down is one less they have and with key Lysandre plays, you can pick off Pokemon trying to find their place in the world. Large birds can eat those smaller dragons. The ecosystem here is in perfect balance. Since Evolving to Garchomp requires them to have a lot of cards to do so, you’ll often have turns where your opponent does nothing but pass.
With the loss of Korrina and Focus Sash, Garchomp is much slower and loses its ability to tank hits. They need to have a Rare Candy and Garchomp available to keep up their momentum every turn. They can sort of fix this with Talonflame but this can be easily disrupted. Where you shine is before Garchomp can do anything meaningful. You will have that free turn to Mega evolve. You will often save yourself two Prize cards because you’re much faster than they are, can tank their most powerful hit extremely well as Mega Pidgeot and can heal any damage they do. The Garchomp player will eventually slowdown, which means you can’t do much with Mirror Move but we do have a bigger attack to use. A Pidgeot-EX with Assault Vest has an effective HP of 280 in this matchup thanks to Resistance. These will be numbers that are hard to hit in a single shot. To put this into perspective, a Garchomp with four Strong Energy can do 240 damage. Take away 60 damage from Assault Vest and Resistance, they are now doing 180 damage. This will KO Pidgeot-EX but M Pidgeot-EX will be fine. Since you will be hitting them every turn, a case like this will never happen… Unless they happen to have down four Regirock-EX, but let’s be real here.
Vs. Greninja BREAK / Talonflame: Unfavorable – Depends on tech
In this match, you want to be as aggressive as possible. Pidgeot can KO the frogs before they become Greninja in a single hit and Mega Pidgeot can KO everything except for Greninja BREAK. You can take early Prize cards but this isn’t enough. You can’t KO Greninja BREAK in one hit, which is a big deal. Mirror Move isn’t too good since most of the damage you’re taking is through an Ability. When they get down two Greninja BREAK, you fall apart. Between that and Bursting Balloon, you will lose a Pokemon. Some Greninja decks do play Faded Town which lets them hit 220 damage each turn. If you play Garbodor, then this matchup becomes more favorable because they lose access to 120 damage a turn and can only deal damage through Moonlight Slash and Bursting Balloon, which is only 140 damage, something you don’t care about since you can heal it all off.
Overall, there isn’t any real way to approach this match. You hope they brick and Prize important cards. Playing Garbodor or heavy Hex Maniac counts greatly improves this matchup and depending on how well you draw, can put this match into auto-win status. Faded Town makes things a little hard but if you can keep Faded Town out of play, the matchup improves slightly but Bursting Balloon pretty much seals it in. Even if you run Hex Maniac, not being able to stream them will put you back in bad spot. You can do a cute thing with Parallel City and reduce their damage by 20 when they attack, dropping their damage a turn to 180 when all things are said and done.
One thing to note is Greninja is a very inconsistent deck and the player could brick and if it does, the matchup changes. Mega Pidgeot can KO Greninja and the lower stages in one hit, which adds pressure. The Greninja player can also have three to four dead draws due to Talonflame and when you add all of these things together, the Greninja player can fall apart. We all have seen this happen. It doesn’t happen all the time but it is a factor for this matchup. I know people choose to not mention this but the deck’s ability to brick is something that should be considered for reviews as well. Knowing how a deck works is knowledge for players and having it allows you to make plays someone less skilled wouldn’t have made.
Vs. M Gardevoir-EX (Despair Ray): Highly Favorable – Example Match
The queen of stabbing friendlies in the back. Not only does she kill them off, they keep coming back expecting something different. This is like an abusive relationship. This match is more manageable than some of the others. Like Mega Scizor, Mega Gardevoir employs some of the same tactics like Max Potion and Mega Turbo. You have many tools you can employ here as well, like Max Potion, the ability to tank hits and most importantly, Magearna-EX. Gardevoir-EX and all of its Mega evolved cards are weak to Metal-type Pokemon. Magearna’s Soul Blaster attack does 120 damage, which doubles to 240, which will KO all their attackers. If you get this into play, you’re pretty much playing a four Prize card game. Best thing is Magearna-EX resist the dual-type M Gardevoir-EX putting its bulk up to 180 HP against it.
Mega Gardevoir does have tools though. For example, the most damage she can do is 190, which is a lot but they need to have a full Sky Field enhanced Bench of eight Pokemon. The Problem here is they now only have one Pokemon in play, and it’s in the Active spot. They will want to have at least two more Gardevoir on the Bench so they can recover effectively, meaning their effective damage is something around 160 in a back and forth competitive match. They can also deny Prize cards by discarding damaged Pokemon but this isn’t something they can keep doing since it requires many resources. Do keep in mind that they can nuke their whole Bench if needed. For the Gardevoir player, not only is it super inefficient, because they can’t OHKO Mega Pidgeot, it’s flat out stupid. Things largely come down to what your opponent is willing to sacrifice.
Mega Pidgeot can shuffle Pokemon around with Mach Cyclone so you may be able to stick something in the Active spot since all their attackers have spirit links. Mega Gardevoir can do 110 damage for two Energy, and that’s good so don’t underestimate it. If you get hit, you need to Max Potion. We aren’t worried about being knocked out in a single hit but this could allow Mega Pidgeot or Magearna to tank an extra hit and perhaps save a Max Potion. This isn’t recommended since Mega Gardevoir is good at getting 2HKOs. Between Magearna-EX, disruption, your ability to tank and heal as well as your opponent’s inability to OHKO you, this matchup is a breeze.
Vs. Rainbow Road: Slightly Even – Example Match
Oh boy… There are so many ways to play this deck that it’s hard to prepare for it. This build still does extremely well under Parallel City. Their damage output maxes at something like 250 to 280 realistically. They do use Shaymin-EX to setup and each one on the board affects the damage, with the same being true for each Xerneas. Under normal circumstance, Mega Pidgeot with Assault Vest can take a hit and hit back.
The key to this matchup is to keep the duel types in check. Volcanion-EX, Bisharp and Galvantula give 60 damage each to Rainbow Force. With base damage of ten, the attack is doing 190 damage. If a Shaymin-EX is in play and they have another Xerneas, they are doing 250 damage. With a Fighting Fury Belt, that’s 260 damage – with only a Bench of five Pokemon. That will KO Pidgeot-EX with an Assault Vest, as well as M Pidgeot-EX, whose bulk extends to 260 with the Assault Vest. It’s even possible for them to get a turn one KO as well. If you can tank a hit, Mirror Move is a great. Surprisingly, Xerneas has issues maintaining their board state after a few go down.
Due to the nature of this deck, things can get out of control. Keep in mind some builds may run Parallel City so you can’t play yours but we play Paint Roller so we shouldn’t have any issues with counter play. Your real check on this match is a timely Parallel City as playing one can destroy them if they can get a Bench of eight. They will often be forced to discard Xerneas that may have Energy attached so they can save their multi-colored Pokemon. You’ll be surprised at how quickly a match can change when you drop this card.
The Mirror Move Factor
This is important enough to warrant its own section. Mirror Move is considered to be an effect on Pidgeot-EX and NOT M Pidgeot-EX. What do you mean? Isn’t the idea of the deck to use Mirror Move as Mega Pidgeot? Yes it is, PokeBeach user, but we need to remember the mechanics of the game and the order in which things happen. Mirror Move checks the damage on Pidgeot-EX (keep in mind I said Pidgeot-EX) or “this Pokemon” (assuming Pidgeot-EX or M Pidgeot-EX used the attack) when factoring the damage for the move. Pidgeot-EX and M Pidgeot-EX are considered DIFFERENT Pokemon by game mechanics. Remember it says “this Pokemon” as in Pidgeot-EX OR M Pidgeot-EX or any other Pokemon if they happen to have access to the move.
Evolving a Pokemon (yes, M Pidgeot-EX is an Evolution card) removes ALL effects on the Pokemon, as well as Status Conditions when it evolves. Since Pidgeot is EVOLVING into Mega Pidgeot, the condition check of Mirror Move fails since the original target (i.e. Pidgeot-EX) is no longer in play. M Pidgeot-EX never took that 160 damage, Pidgeot-EX did. Considering how seamless this strategy is with this deck, players (even advanced and highly skilled players) can make this mistake and lesser skilled Judges may not catch it. This is a hard thing to spot simply because it looks like you can do it so misplays can happen.
Mirror Move is interesting because it’s not considered an effect on your Pokemon and should work but through game mechanics, evolving a Pokemon erases such “metadata” on the Pokemon when bring in the next form. A general rule of thumb here is if it evolves, it’s a completely different Pokemon and the only thing it retains is damage at the time of Evolution.
Pidgeot-EX is a fun tier two deck but it isn’t your pick up and play deck. This deck requires a lot of skill, planning and risk to run well. Should you master this play style, you’ll have a lot of fun with it. The best part about this deck is it’s a cheap deck to build if you have a strict budget. Pidgeot-EX isn’t a card in high demand so you’ll be able to pick them easily. Even if you don’t want to play this deck, at least own a full art of Pidgeot-EX and M Pidgeot-EX as they pretty to look at and in my opinion are the best looking full arts in Standard. If you’re a Pidgeot fan like I am, then you’re playing this card anyway and if that’s the case, I hope the information I presented is helpful. If you aren’t a fan but like to punish opponents for overextending, then this card is for you. Pidgeot has a lot of even matchups that can be favorable and many that it outright wins. I tried to include all the matchups I think you may see. If I missed any matchup or overlooked something, please let me know! I want to make sure my information is as accurate as possible! Thank you all for reading my article of Pidgeot-EX. I had a lot of fun writing this and I hope you all enjoyed reading it as well! Its been swell,