“Dew You Wanna Read About Sableye / Garbodor?” A Deck Analysis

Hello and welcome back PokeBeach fans and subscribers! I’m going to talk about the deck I like the best in Expanded and I’ll briefly talk about my latest Expanded tournament experience. I wish I could say I was going to San Jose Regionals, but I can’t get the time off work that weekend. I want to wish the best of luck and safe travels to anyone attending!

Daytona Regionals

For Daytona Regionals I chose to play Sableye / Garbodor because my friends convinced me it was the best play for the tournament and I still agree with that. I didn’t have any time to test it in the days leading up, but my friends explained in detail how it works and how to play each matchup. Luckily, I got a decent amount of games in and playtested a few different matchups in the airport before we left, which helped me feel more confident in my choice. I was still somewhat worried that I wouldn’t play correctly due to lack of testing, but once I started testing against Turbo Dark and Gardevoir-GX, I felt confident in how to play the deck.

The Event

I won the first two rounds without much trouble; both opponents played a lot of Items and I got lucky with Crushing Hammers. The third round is where I got my first loss to Trevenant. I wasn’t worried because I played a Latias-EX, and I was positive I was going to win! However, that was until my opponent played a Captivating Poké Puff, something I did not expect! Even with that surprise, I almost won the game with Trashalanche. Ultimately, my opponent used two Bursting Balloon in a row to Knock Out my Garbodor and had just enough Energy left to finish me off. In game two I had a rough hand and got benched out.

My next loss was in round four to a Necrozma-GX / Garbodor deck. Game one I had to use Trashalanche early due to an awkward hand and I lost. Game two I won. Game three we set up and had barely any time to play. Unfortunately for me I passed my first turn with a lone Sableye. My opponent got three Tools in play including a Muscle Band on the Active Trubbish and a Dimension Valley to donk me with Tool Drop.

Round seven was the heartbreaker: my third loss, this time to Turbo Turtonator-GX. It’s already a rough matchup because of all the Energy recovery in the deck, but to make matters worse I prized my Life Dew game one. I probably should have scooped after that, but when my opponent started over benching and powering up Turtonator-GX and Volcanion-EX instead of baby Volcanion, I figured I could still potentially win.

I was almost able to pull it off by emptying their hand to zero and KO’ing all their threats with Trashlanche! It came down to a crucial turn where if they top decked a Fire Energy, they would win. Otherwise, I would eliminate their last attacker with enough Energy to respond. Luckily for them, they drew the Fire Energy. It also hurt that I got two tails on Team Rocket's Handiwork the turn before they drew the Fire Energy. If I had gotten one or two heads they may have whiffed, but that’s just how it goes.

My last round was against Archie’s Blastosie. This is a great matchup, but it ended up being a tie. It could have been a win if I hadn’t spaced in game two. I thought for some reason that my opponent only had three cards left, so I played a Trick Shovel then used both Puzzle of Time to get both Trick Shovel back, but it turned out they really had four cards left! I should have checked but for some reason I thought I knew, probably from being overly tired. If I had grabbed one Trick Shovel and a Team Rocket’s Handiwork I could have won. So instead they took their last Prize and we didn’t finish game three, resulting in a tie.

Luckily, I squeaked in and still got Top 128 points. Here is the list that I and fellow PokeBeach writer Caleb Gedemer played for the event, which was given to us by our friends Joe and Jando.

Pokemon (13)

4x Sableye (DEX #62)2x Garbodor (GUR #51)1x Garbodor (BKP #57)3x Trubbish (NVI #48)1x Tapu Lele-GX (GUR #60)1x Shaymin-EX (RSK #77)1x Latias-EX (PLF #85)

Trainers (41)

4x Professor Sycamore (BKP #107)2x N (FAC #105)2x Team Flare Grunt (XY #129)1x Plumeria (BUS #120)1x AZ (PHF #91)1x Delinquent (BKP #98)1x Ghetsis (PLF #101)1x Guzma (BUS #115)1x Lysandre (FLF #90)1x Team Rocket's Handiwork (FAC #112)3x VS Seeker (SV #140)3x Ultra Ball (SM #135)3x Trainers' Mail (RSK #92)3x Puzzle of Time (BKP #109)3x Crushing Hammer (SM #115)2x Float Stone (BKT #137)2x Trick Shovel (FLF #98)1x Rescue Stretcher (GUR #130)1x Special Charge (STS #105)1x Enhanced Hammer (GUR #124)1x Field Blower (GUR #125)1x Target Whistle (PHF #106)1x Life Dew (PLF #107)1x Parallel City (BKT #145)

Energy (6)

4x Blend Energy GRPD (DRX #117)2x Darkness Energy (HS #121)

I liked the list as it was, and I don’t think I would change anything about it if I could redo the event.

How it Works

Now let’s look at the ins and outs of Sableye since it’s quite difficult to pilot compared to your average deck.

The Basics

The goal of the deck is to run your opponent out of most of their resources — primarily Energy — and getting them to a board state that can’t handle Garbodor abusing Trashalanche.

After you’ve won game one, all you need to do is make sure your second game doesn’t finish by denying your opponent opportunities to draw Prize cards. You can still draw all your Prize cards if you want in game two, but typically game one should have burned enough time that it won’t be necessary.

The hardest thing is when you lose a game and need to be much more aggressive with Trashalanche due to time constraints. This usually requires using Trick ShovelTeam Rocket's Handiwork, and Delinquent more frequently to make your opponent use more Items sooner. It’s important to hold onto multiple Puzzle of Time and Special Charge in games that you need to Trashalanche repeatedly. You also want to try to lock your opponent out of playing the game. The best way to do this is get their hand down to zero cards with Delinquent and use Trick Shovel to control their draws.

This concludes the public portion of this article.

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