Epic Comeback! (Sorta) Brooklyn City Championship Report

This time of the year is always extremely busy for me and for a lot of people.  There are the various holidays taking place, Christmas and New Years are the two big ones for me.  A lot of hours are being put in at the office in the weeks leading up to Christmas.  Weekends are typically consumed with holiday shopping and spending time with the family.  Finals are taking place in college, which means people cramming in order to get decent grades at the end of the semester.   And then, of course, there are City Championships taking place, which means lots of testing and playing in the actual events.  This is actually the first year I have attended City Championships.  This is my first year of competitive Pokémon TCG play, so going to City Championships was a new and fun experience for me.  I didn’t have time to go to a lot of the various championships taking place across the New England area due mostly to work hours and a nasty cold I caught the first week of January, but I did go to a couple and now that I have some down time I thought I could write up a report on one of them!

The City Championship I am going over is for the Brooklyn City Championship.  The event took place almost a month ago (as of writing this) so it is a little outdated.  I ended up using a deck that ran Mew Prime, Cinccino, and Weavile as the main Pokémon in the deck.  The main goal of the deck was pretty simple.  I would use Mew Prime first turn to see off a Cinccino into the Lost Zone and then hit with ‘Do the Wave’ every turn for huge amounts of damage.  I also had Weavile in there for hand disruption.  It worked really well during play testing.  I also loved the idea that the majority of Pokémon in my deck had free retreat cost, which meant that my deck didn’t quite fear being catcher’d as much as some decks would.  I also made sure to include a healthy 3-4 Cinccino line just in case I couldn’t See Off early enough or if I came up against Steel types (I’m looking at you, Durant and Cobalion).  I knew the deck wasn’t the ‘best’ choice for the format we were in right now, but it seemed like a lot of fun while I was testing it and I just wanted to give it a try!  So anyway, let’s get down into the report and see how things went!

Round 1: Vileplume Rogue with Excadrill, Hypno, Houndoom Prime and Victini

To say I was confused when I saw my opponent flipped over a Drillbur at the start of the game is putting things lightly.  I had some vague idea of what the two Excadrills in our format did, but I wasn’t exactly sure what his game plan was.  He immediately benched two oddish’s and retreated his Drillbur to the bench, letting me know that he had planned to use Vileplume at some time.  Still, I wasn’t 100% sure how to approach things once Excadrill came out.  First turn I was able to ‘See Off’ a Cinccino into the Lost Zone using Mew Prime.  I was also able to get a couple of Sneasels and another Mew on my bench, so my set up was pretty good.  The next turn he places another Drillbur on his bench as well as a Victini.  I don’t have the resources to get a Weavile out right away to see what he was planning.  I hesitate, knowing he can have Twins, but I decide to just go for a strong offense and immediately knock out the Oddish.

A couple of turns pass and I’m actually on a roll, taking knock-outs fairly quickly and taking a 3 prize lead.  I’m pretty confident as I get my first Weavile out and Claw Snag after he gets a hand refresh.  To my surprise, I see two twins, a rare candy, and an Excadrill.  I knew for sure he was getting Vileplume out right away.  I knock off one of his Twins.   Looking back, not sure if that was right the move, but it didn’t really matter too much since he had everything he needed.  It was also at this time I learn which Excadrill he was using.  Excadrill 57 from Emerging Powers has an attack called Dig.  You flip a coin and if heads, your opponent can’t attack you next turn.  Using Victini, you can re-flip that and lock your opponent from ever attacking.  His plan slowly begins to work.  He gets the trainer lock up, begins using Dig over and over again, and during the course of the game gets a Hypno and Houndoom Prime up to slow me down even more with Burn and Sleep conditions.  I was able to take one more prize, but that didn’t even matter.  Slowly, he takes six prizes using Dig and I take a first round loss.  I was a little disappointed, but it was really cool seeing a deck that was so far from mainstream top decks.  This round puts me at 0-1.

Round 2: Cobalion and Virizion Rogue

I’m really not too sure what the main strategy behind this deck was to be honest.  It had a weird assortment of attackers along with Cobalion and Virizion.  It might have been along the lines of 6 Corners, but even then it didn’t really fit that archetype since it was missing a lot of key players.

After an extremely poor start on my end, this game became surprisingly close.  I am able to See Off right away, but my bench space was only at 2 Pokémon rather than the preferred 5 and Mew isn’t exactly great against Cobalion.  He takes two early knockouts against Mew’s as I try to set up a normal Cinccino to deal with that Steel type.  Once I get Cinccino set up along with Weaviles for disruption (lucky top deck into Collector on my part), I begin plowing through his field, starting with that Cobalion.  I use Catcher from then on to get easy KO’s whenever I need them against benched Zorua’s and Virizions.  Rocky Helmet in my deck also pays off when he tries to attack back, putting all his Virizions in Knock Out range of ‘Do the Wave.’  He manages to knock out one Cinccino, but over the course of those few turns I had been building up a second one and just kept right at it.  Things seem to be going great until he drops a Lost Remover.  I did not see that coming and my Double Colorless Energy is swept away into the Lost Zone.  In a couple of turns Cinccino is gone, but I still have attackers on my now full bench ready to go at it in the form of Mew.  We’re both tied at 4 prizes when time is called.  Time ended up being my downfall.  Even though he had only one attacker left, he was able to take the prize advantage in time and eventually win the game.  If the game had played out in full, I had a feeling I would have won.  But that’s just the way things go sometimes.  This puts me at 0-2.

Round 3: TZPS (Tornadus, Zekrom, Pachirisu, Shaymin)

I’m fairly nervous by this point since I had already lost 2 in a row.  I knew that my odds of Top Cut were already extremely low, if I lost one more game then all hope would be lost for sure.  Fortunately for me, the next game ends in literally 5 minutes.  He flips over a Zekrom and I’m relieved to know that I’m going first.  I lead with Sneasel, Collector into a couple of Mew and one more Sneasel, bench all three Pokémon and then switch into Mew.  I attach the one Psychic energy in my hand to See Off a Cinccino and end my turn.  He draws for the turn, attaches one Electric Energy, and then passes, leading me to believe that his hand was really bad.  I use PONT the next turn to get a new hand and new resources.  Off that new Hand I draw a Weavile.  I Claw snag to see that he literally has nothing.  His hand was full of energy, a couple of Catchers, and one Junk Arm.  I attach a Rescue energy and attack that turn with ‘Do the Wave.’  He does Outrage the next turn for a knock out, but a Double Colorless on one more Mew means I can take a KO on his only Pokémon and win by turn 3 after benching a Minccino I drew off the top deck.  I move ahead a little to 1-2.

In the wait time I asked if he wanted to play another game just for fun.   I end up winning that game too, but the match was closer.  Bad hands do happen sometimes and luck can play a major role in the game.

Round 4: Another Cobalion and Virizion Rogue

My next opponent ended up playing a deck shockingly similar to my Round 2 opponent’s deck.  After the round ended, I discovered that they were both good friends, so it explained my feelings of deja vu.  Unlike Round 2, my start was really good.   I was able to get out a couple of Sneasels, a Mew, and a Minccino on the first turn after realizing my opponent was playing Cobalion.  I used See Off to send a Cinccino to the Lost Zone so I could attack with Mew if needed.  His first turn is pretty slow with him just benching a couple of more basics and attaching.  I draw a Weavile and Claw Snag immediately, sending one of his Special Metal Energy to the discard pile.  I then PONT my one card hand away for a fresh hand of six and fill my bench with one more Sneasel and a Minccino.  I also evolve into Cinccino and attach a Double Colorless Energy.  He finds himself lacking energy and is forced to pass.  From there, I take six straight prizes with my opponent never getting the chance to take one.  This restores my confidence in my deck choice and puts me at an even 2-2.

Round 5: The Thunderdome (Magnezone Prime, Eelektrik, Thundurus)

This is yet another really close game that comes down right to the wire.  When he flips over Magnemites, I knew I could be in trouble.  The Thunderdome is currently the best performing deck in our format.  It can hit for huge amounts of damage if it gets set up fast enough.  I knew that with my quick hitters and Pokémon Catcher I could possibly prevent my opponent from setting up quick enough.  Also playing in my favor is that I get to go first.  I have been having quite a bit of good luck this tournament with Mew being in my hand right away and this match was no different.  I used See Off to send Cinccino to the lost zone and begin working on loading up my bench with more Mew’s and Sneasels.  He attaches an Electric Energy to his Magnemite and then plays a Collector of his own, getting out his Thundurus and a couple of Tynamo’s.  He then Magnetic Switches into his Thundurus and it’s my turn.

With Catcher in my hand, I immediately pull the Magnemite up that has the one energy.  I attach a Rescue Energy to Mew Prime and use ‘Do the Wave’ for an easy 60 damage.  During that turn I was also able to put a Rocky Helmet on Mew.  I get the first prize.  He does have the Eelectric ready to get back the energy from the discard pile, but he doesn’t have a Magnezone ready, just a Magneton.  This gives me one more turn to do some damage.  He uses Thundurus to Charge.

I refresh my hand with a PONT and draw into some more great resources.  Unfortunately, I don’t hit another basic, but I am able to hit another Catcher.  This time, I decide to Catcher up his Magneton and do some damage to it.  This way, even if he does get Magnezone out, it’s going down right away. He does get the Magnezone, but takes 20 damage due to rocky helmet and this puts him at the necessary 60 HP that I need for a knock out.  He also burns 2 energy in the process trying to take out one Mew.  I end up getting that Mew back thanks to Rescue Energy, put a Double Colorless on the other Mew, and then use ‘Do the Wave’ for 60 again to take down the Magnezone.  Over the course of the game, things are close with both of us within one prize of each other.  Time is called when we both have taken 5 Prizes, but it doesn’t even matter.  On my turn, I use Do the Wave to take my last prize against a damaged Magnezone.  I’m put at a positive 3-2.

Round 6: Durant

The last round of the game and I face the deck that no one wants to go up against.  Durant is a match up I find myself with a 50-50 record against using this deck.  If I get set up in good time, I win.  If I’m slowed or it takes me a turn or two to set up, then I lose.  It’s that simple.  I also can’t use Mew to attack because of the resistance Durant has to Psychic.  It has to be Cinccino.  On my first turn, I have two Mew Primes and the energy to See Off.  Unfortunately, that’s not what I need right now.  I play both Mew’s and then use a PONT in my hand to draw into something fresh.  I see a Minccino and immediately bench it.  I also take this time to attach a Psychic energy to Minccino.  His first turn goes off incredibly well for him.  He gets out all four of his Durants and devours my top four.  I do a mental face-palm when I see a Double Colorless and two Cinccinos hit the discard pile.  My turn comes up again and I draw into a collector.  I pull out a couple of Sneasels and a Cleffa.  I bench both Sneasels and Pokémon Communicate away my Cleffa to get a Cinccino.  I evolve into Cinccino, but don’t have the energy to attack this turn and pass.  He devours again, sending a second Double Colorless Energy to my discard pile.

I start to worry a little bit.  I top deck a Rescue Energy and switch into my Cinccino.  I attack with a 100 damage “Do the Wave” and knock out Durant.  He drops a Revive to bring back the previously knocked-out Durant.  Then he plays a Lost Remover and gets rid of my Rescue Energy before devouring again.  This time two Psychic Energy that I really needed are discarded.  My top deck is a Cheren, which I use immediately to draw three fresh cards.  One of them is the other Double Colorless Energy.  I also get another Cheren off that, which will help me in the long run.  I attach the Double Colorless Energy and attack again.  He Junk Arms next turn for Lost Remover and removes my Double Colorless from play.  I draw, play Cheren, and am relieved to draw into two more Psychic Energy.

The game was extremely close, but I ended up taking my six prizes before he devoured me.  I don’t remember how much of my deck was left, but I know it was less than ten cards remaining.  I finish the day at 4-2.

Tournament Wrap-Up

There was a large attendance that day, so I had a feeling that 4-2’s were going to be left out of the Top Cut.  Just as I thought, no one with a 4-2 record that day made it to the Top Cut.  I was a little disappointed considering how big of a comeback I was on, but that’s just the way things go sometimes.  This is still my first year, so I’m chalking this up to a great learning experience.

So, what did well that day at the event?  These are the top four Masters at the Brooklyn City Championships along with the decks the played:

1. Jimmy O’ Brien: Chandelure/Vileplume
2. Anthony Rossano: Durant
3. Sava Radovic: Reshiram/Typhlosion/Ninetales
4. Michael Diaz: Virizion/Terrakion/Kyurem/Vicitini (V-Create)

Congratulations to the top four players and to Jimmy O’ Brien for winning!

That will be all from me for the time being.  Things might be a little slow with the exception of pre-releases for Next Destinies (AKA Ex’s).  I’ll try to write up some more articles as well as some stuff on the Pokemon Video Game.  If anyone wants to do some single battles in Black and White, I’m more than up for a challenge!

Thank you all for reading and I hope you all have a wonderful 2012!

Posted by at January 17, 2012
Filed in category: TCG Articles,
  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001710157108 Oliver Barnett

    Nice comeback man, I also laughed at how you mainly lost to rogue decks and won against meta just goes to show :)

  • PKMN Trainer Andrew

    Thanks =) Yeah, anything can win with the right testing and mindset behind it. That Excadrill really made me think twice about cards I previously might have considered bad.

  • Aaron Minjoot

    A very cool rogue deck choice, something similar which I was thinking of building pending the arrival of 2 Mews I was missing. Congrats on the comeback, too bad you couldn’t plow on through to Top Cut.

  • PKMN Trainer Andrew

    Thanks! Yeah, it’s a really fun deck to try out. I recommend it once your Mew’s arrive :)

  • Aaron Minjoot

    Will surely do. Though I wonder would this deck be able to hang on once the EXs arrive.

  • PKMN Trainer Andrew

    It might do fairly well actually. It could have some problems against Reshiram EX and Zekrom EX, but the match up isn’t unbeatable in my eyes. Mewtwo will get knocked out in one hit by Mew Prime if your set up works. Weavile resists psychic too, which helps. I think Durant will still be around even if Heatmor comes out, the deck is too popular to die right away, so you’ll have to look at that too I think. Magnezone can be beat if you play right.

  • Aaron Minjoot

    Very tempting indeed. If its okay with you, would you mind sharing a skeleton list? I’ve always tried to work out something of a Stage 1 deck with Mew in it but never got beyond much. Also, would there be another substitute for Cincinno? Another heavy hitter perhaps.

  • PKMN Trainer Andrew

    Sure, not at all. I might make a more detailed write-up about this deck later, but these are my thoughs brainstormed. This list seems tightat 56, but a lot of things can be swapped out for other cards. It all comes down to testing.

    Pokemon (19)

    4 Mew Prime TR
    3-4 Cinccino BW (The extra Cinccino is for Mew to See Off. This should feel more like a 3-3.)
    4-3 Weavile UD (4th Sneasel since it has free retreat and is a good lead if you lack Mew in your hand.)
    1 Cleffa HGSS

    T/S/S (26)

    4 PONT/N/Judge (This is really up to testing. I ran with 3 PONT and 1 N. N and Judge work with Weavile’s claw snag, but then you won’t always get a good hand refresh yourself off it. That messed me up a couple of games in testing.)
    4 Cherren/Sage’s Training (Up to testing.)
    4 Pokemon Collecter
    4 Pokemon Communication/Level Ball (Once it comes out)
    4 Junk Arm
    4 Pokemon Catcher
    2 Rocky Helmet

    Energy (11)

    5 Psychic Energy (No more than 6)
    2 Rescue Energy
    4 Double Colorless Energy

    Other Options:


    -Jumpluff with Prism Energy (Rainbow for the time being) instead of Cinccino with DCE. I haven’t tried this yet, but some people swear on it that it’s better. Worth a look at.
    -Mewtwo EX for tanking once that comes out.
    -Muk against Trainer Lock (My area had low trainer lock with only a couple of vileplume, so I opted not to use it.)
    -Extra Weavile, more chances to claw snag.
    -Zoroark tech to deal with Zekrom or Reshiram if your area is heavy with it.


    -Super Scoop Up to reuse claw snags. I really like this idea, since you can keep your opponent slow downed if you keep claw snagging.
    -Lost Remover, I will probably use this more often as DCE becomes more staple.
    -Super Rod is good recovery. I think it bought me one more turn against that Durant towards the end of the game.
    -More Rocky Helmet or addition of Pluspower if you want to be more aggressive.


    Prism Energy is interesting, may allow for more techs in the future.
    An extra psychic if you find yourself not drawing into it. I never really had this problem.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks! A very clear-cut list, I’m hoping to try something in the vein of it. My idea was to use Weavile in a Mewbox sort of deck instead of either Yanmega or Cinccino. Wouldn’t be as fast as yours but it will be quite a disruptive combo once it sets up. Not too sure yet though.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks! A very clear-cut list, I’m hoping to try something in the vein of it. My idea was to use Weavile in a Mewbox sort of deck instead of either Yanmega or Cinccino. Wouldn’t be as fast as yours but it will be quite a disruptive combo once it sets up. Not too sure yet though.

  • PKMN Trainer Andrew

    You mean like YMCA? Yanmega isn’t a bad card. Eviolite kinda set him back though, so I haven’t given him too much thought since Noble Victories.

  • Anonymous

    Yeah something in the vein of it. But with Trainer Lock to really mess things around. Mew.dec is one so-far overlooked deck for post-ND. Hopefully its workable.