Mind Blown can one-shot anything. Using Blacephalon-GX has been a key part of the metagame since its release, but with the rotation set to happen, many folks have been uncertain about its future. So what changed? On the surface, the deck lost: Alolan Muk, Marshadow, Tapu Lele-GX, Guzma, and Ultra Ball. That’s not that much in comparison to some other decks, but it’s still a relevant loss. Now there is a new threat on horizon: Tapu Fini. The main problem is its second attack:
[W][W][C] Nature Wave: 100 damage. If your opponent has any Ultra Beasts in play, the cost for this attack is [C].
For such a cost, any deck could play it if it wanted and as a non-GX it will be awkward for a Blacephalon-GX deck to address it properly. Its 120 HP makes it worse, not allowing Naganadel to one-shot it with Turning Point unless the Blacephalon-GX has three Prizes remaining, and even Blacephalon-GX needs to use Blown with three Fire Energy for one Prize. In any case, the hype around Blacephalon-GX has faded more and more into mediocry in recent times. With this in mind, it’ll be interesting to see if any decks actually end up playing the new Tapu Fini and if they don’t, the good old cake pop could have a field day.
The new Naganadel-GX is nice for Blacephalon-GX decks as a support Pokemon. I’ve been playing three copies, not to get three out, but to get one down and to discard the other two to draw cards. This is likely better than Persian-GX which is much harder to find and requires you to play Cherish Ball. Using Ultra Space fills the void Ultra Ball left behind and it is a good idea to use it to its full potential by playing a searchable consistency card like this Naganadel-GX. Ultra Conversion helps you fly through your deck and find Beast Ring on the turns you can use them, and it can even thin your deck of things you don’t need anymore in the late game like extra Blacephalon-GX. While it can’t attack without using Beast Energy Prism Star, its Ability alone is reason enough to play it.
While not a Unified Minds card, Ninetales should be added to Blacephalon-GX as a gust effect and extra support for getting Fire Energy into the discard pile. This was previously unplayed because Guzma existed. Blacephalon-GX doesn’t have the most space for Custom Catcher and playing Ninetales instead is a nice way to be able to gust multiple times in a game! Discarding Fire Energy isn’t a bad thing either because it works in tandem with Naganadel to Charging Up the Energy back into play.
I started testing Blacephalon-GX with: Dedenne-GX, Persian-GX, and Cherish Ball. First of all, Cherish Ball is only strong to fetch either of the aforementioned Pokemon. It’s not necessary to find Blacephalon-GX since, with four of the them, you’ll be drawing into them often enough naturally, even if you don’t you have Ultra Space for a guaranteed search if you need it. Cherish Ball clogs up the deck and this deck doesn’t want to put easy Prizes like Dedenne-GX down on the Bench. By putting one down, you take away a spot from a Naganadel so you can more easily take Knock Outs. I’m not a huge fan of Persian-GX because you only get amazingly good use out of it one, maybe two times a game if you even manage to set it up. Now here’s my list:
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