Quaking Down — Zoroark-GX and Seismitoad-EX Plot Their Revenge

Zoroark-GX / Seismitoad-EX was played in Dallas, Texas at the Regional Championships back in January, but it didn’t take a single spot in day two. Players packed Pokémon Ranger into their lists to counter this fearsome deck, and it seems to have kept Seismitoad-EX out of the second day of play. However, most players, including myself, will go on account saying that they never used Pokemon Ranger to any avail through the course of the entire event. Pokemon Ranger has always been a card that’s cycled in and out of decks, and now it will certainly be on the downturn as far as usage goes. Taking this into consideration, Zoroark-GX with Seismitoad-EX has never been in a better spot than it is going into Costa Mesa, California Regionals on the first weekend of March.

I have been testing this deck quite a bit, and it’s one of my top picks for the event. Seismitoad-EX is extremely strong right now and beats most of the projected metagame. With most Zoroark-GX decks playing Red Card to score free wins if they hit the right combination of cards, you can directly counter that by simply using Quaking Punch. Better yet, you can flip the script and play a Red Card of your own, something I’m rather fond of. Hand disruption coupled with a Supporter card that draws cards is almost unfair, and I can’t think of a more degenerate card to make good use of that combination other than Seismitoad-EX.

This deck is very linear in structure. Start with a Seismitoad-EX and use Quaking Punch as soon as you can. In the back, build up Zoroark-GX to Trade and establish a fearsome board that won’t be fanned away with an N. Zoroark-GX also helps you pull off Puzzle of Time plays and recycle Hypnotoxic Laser, a card as toxic as its name suggests. Seismitoad-EX won’t be expected much after a lackluster performance in its last Regionals, and if you’re looking for a deck to play with not much experience, this is the one for you. This deck is great for newer players to the Expanded format and seasoned pros alike. Get ready to hear a lot of “pass” from your opponents, let’s go!

Zoroark-GX / Seismitoad-EX

Pokemon (13)

3x Zoroark-GX (SHL #53)3x Zorua (DEX #70)3x Seismitoad-EX (FFI #20)2x Shaymin-EX (RSK #77)1x Tapu Lele-GX (GUR #60)1x Exeggcute (PLF #4)

Trainers (43)

3x Cynthia (ULP #119)2x N (FAC #105)2x Acerola (BUS #112)1x Shadow Triad (PLF #102)1x Plumeria (BUS #120)1x Hex Maniac (AOR #75)1x Guzma (BUS #115)1x Ghetsis (PLF #101)1x Cyrus Prism Star (ULP #120)1x Colress (PLS #118)4x VS Seeker (PHF #109)4x Ultra Ball (SHL #68)4x Puzzle of Time (BKP #109)4x Hypnotoxic Laser (PLS #123)2x Float Stone (BKT #137)2x Enhanced Hammer (GUR #124)1x Special Charge (STS #105)1x Red Card (GEN #71)1x Fighting Fury Belt (BKP #99)1x Field Blower (GUR #125)1x Choice Band (GUR #121)1x Computer Search (BCR #137)3x Virbank City Gym (PLS #126)

Energy (4)

4x Double Colorless Energy (SHL #69)


Three Zorua and Three Zoroark-GX

I’ve played more than this, and also less. Three of each has always been the number I’ve come back to. While you may only aim to solidify a position of at least two Zoroark-GX a game, having the third copy saves you from bad Prizes and times where you need to discard a Zoroark-GX piece, something that happens often. A Pokemon recovery card doesn’t have a place in a deck that’s very straightforward like this, and with Acerola being such a big part of the strategy, there’s no reason to be getting back yet another Seismitoad-EX, or something else if one gets into your discard pile. If you ever need to, you can use a double Puzzle of Time play to get a Zoroark-GX back. Zoroark-GX isn’t the main attacker in this deck, it’s mainly for support. Picture a scenario where you have a Seismitoad-EX and a support Pokemon like Shaymin-EX or Tapu Lele-GX on your Bench; now think, where would the space be for anything more than just three Zoroark-GX? This is the optimal count, by a mile.

Three Seismitoad-EX

By adding a fourth Seismitoad-EX, your odds of starting it do not increase very much. You play nine Basics in this list starting off and going to ten is just going to give you about a couple of percent better of a chance of starting it. That said, though, it is your main attacker, but with Acerola chaining being the point of this deck in a nutshell, you’re not going to ever need four of them. Three is just fine, as you’ll usually only use two in a game at most to begin with. While starting Seismitoad-EX is nice, so that you can get an early Quaking Punch off, just adding another copy of Float Stone would basically do the same thing for you but give you a card that’s better all through the game versus just on your first or second turn.

Two Shaymin-EX and One Tapu Lele-GX

This support Pokemon lineup is correct. Having two Shaymin-EX to dig for the missing pieces of the early Quaking Punch is amazing and something I don’t want to give up. A single copy of Tapu Lele-GX grants you searchable Supporters via Ultra Ball, something super nice to have in a deck with a lot of one-ofs in the tech Supporter category. This deck doesn’t use Brigette like most other Zoroark-GX-based decks, so it’s better to put an emphasis on Shaymin-EX rather than Tapu Lele-GX.

One Exeggcute

Propagation is always good, especially in a deck that plays almost the bare-minimum of everything. Almost every card in this deck is always useful, unlike a deck playing four Brigette, for instance. Going down the line, you can trade the extra Brigette to thin them out, but like I said, this deck relies on almost everything that’s included in it. There aren’t ever many cards you actually want to part ways with, and that’s where the lone Exeggcute comes in. Having the chance to use a free Trade is awesome, and Plumeria comes at half the cost thanks to it as well. I will always vouch for this card in anything with Zoroark-GX.

This concludes the public portion of this article.

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