The High King Cometh — A Look at Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX / Inteleon

Hello to all PokeBeach readers! Here is Gabriel Pino Semedo again with another Pokémon TCG article and this time I’m going to talk about my favorite deck from the current metagame, Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX / Inteleon.

In most of my articles, I end up talking and analyzing about ideas and decks that I find interesting with competitive potential, but this time I want to talk about one of the most popular decks in the format, which has balanced matchups against all other decks in the format like Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX, Arceus and Dialga and Palkia-GX and even Zacian V / Lucario and Melmetal-GX. I’ve always liked to use decks that could have as many balanced matchups as possible so I don’t have to worry about which matchups I’m going to face. The problem is that using decks like that means you will have an intense tournament, as all the matches will be played. The good part is that in a close matchup, the good player can make a difference if he makes good plays.

One of the cards that makes it possible for Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX to have matchups balanced against the best decks of the format is Path to the Peak, but in practice, the decks that suffer for this Stadium are prepared with Chaotic Swell and Marshadow. Thinking about it, I decided to suggest a more aggressive build without Stadiums that I will present and talk about at the end of the article. For now, let’s analyze my Standard list for Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX.

Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX / Path to the Peak

For me, the ideal deck is the one that manages to obtain balanced matchups against the main decks of the format. Until the previous format we had Pikachu and Zekrom-GX and Victini VMAX as examples with this positioning in the metagame, and now I think Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX is the closest thing to that. Like Victini VMAX, Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX / Inteleon can also perform Knock Outs on Pokémon-GX and V like Dedenne-GX, Crobat V, and Zacian V, or even win games by KO-ing three of these Pokémon. Like PikaRom, Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX can also hinder the opponent, but with Path to the Peak to make the opponent unable to use Pokémon-GX/V with Abilities.

While one of the advantages of Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX is that it doesn’t have any great matchups, one of the disadvantages of the deck is that it doesn’t have any great matchups. All of the main matchups of the format are balanced, ranging from slightly bad matchups (up to 40-60 for the opponent’s deck) to slightly good matchups (up to 60-40 in favor of Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX).

Even with Zacian V / LucMetal and ADPZ picking up on Ice Rider’s Weakness, these matchups are balanced, which shows that Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX can have a stabilized metagame for a long time since it’s difficult or not attractive to counter Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX.

Deck List

Pokemon (21)

3x Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX (SWSH6 #46)4x Ice Rider Calyrex V (SWSH6 #45)2x Inteleon (SWSH1 #58)1x Inteleon (SWSH6 #43)4x Drizzile (SWSH1 #56)4x Sobble (SWSH6 #41)1x Marshadow (UNB #81)1x Mew (UNB #76)1x Dedenne-GX (UNB #57)

Trainers (32)

4x Melony (SWSH6 #146)2x Professor's Research (SWSH35 #62)2x Marnie (SWSH1 #169)2x Boss's Orders (SWSH2 #154)1x Leon (SWSH4 #154)4x Quick Ball (SWSH1 #179)4x Level Ball (SWSH5 #129)3x Evolution Incense (SWSH1 #163)3x Capacious Bucket (SWSH2 #156)1x Pokémon Communication (TEU #152)1x Air Balloon (SWSH1 #156)1x Scoop Up Net (SWSH2 #165)1x Reset Stamp (UNM #206)3x Path to the Peak (SWSH6 #148)

Energy (7)

7x Water Energy (EVO #93)

Deck List Breakdown

Four Ice Rider Calyrex V, Three Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX

Max Lance will be the attack that will carry the strategy most of the time, so it’s important to build two Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX in a game and start attacking on the second turn. Four copies of Ice Rider Calyrex V are needed because you need to find one as soon as possible.

It’s worth mentioning the importance of Ice Rider Calyrex V’s Pierce attack, which despite dealing only 40 damage is an attack that can be performed in the first turn as it costs only one Water Energy, and helps set up Knock Outs for Max Lance on the next turn.

Four Sobble, Four Drizzile, Two Inteleon SSH, One Inteleon CRE

The Inteleon line is increasingly popular in the format, and several other strategies have emerged. We recently had Alex Schemanske winning the Players Cup IV with Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX / Inteleon, and even the return of the Caturday deck with a strength never seen before thanks to the Inteleon build — a deck created by Benjamin Pham.

Unlike these other builds that focus on Quick Shooting Inteleon’s Ability to develop a strategy, Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX focuses a little more on Shady Dealings Inteleon‘s Ability, as the priority here is to have access to Melony whenever you need it in order to enjoy the full 250 damage done by Max Lance. In addition, the search Ability provides access to other important cards like Path to the Peak and Reset Stamp.

Remember, along with Drizzile, both Inteleon provide consistency; the Inteleon line makes the deck less dependent on Dedenne-GX and Crobat V.

It is still necessary to use a copy of these Pokémon for some situations, but thanks to a build not relying on these Pokémon it is possible to explore the potential of a card that came out a short time ago but already one of the strongest cards in the format; Path to the Peak. Thanks to this Stadium and a build suitable for its power, the deck gains a strong resource to deal with the main threats of the format such as Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX, Arceus and Dialga and Palkia-GX, Zacian V / Lucario and Melmetal-GX, and Eternatus VMAX.

This concludes the public portion of this article.

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