“Darkrai, Part 1: Rockin’ Out in Standard”

Table of Contents

  1. Article Introduction
  2. Thoughts on the Standard Metagame
  3. Standard Darkrai/Giratina Skeleton Decklist
  4. Tech Cards
  5. Deck Match-Ups
  6. My Personal Standard Darkrai/Giratina Decklist
  7. Closing Thoughts

1. Article Introduction

Hey CutorTap readers, I am back with another awesome article, and this time it’s a special two-part series focusing on the power of utilizing a deck in Standard and Expanded. I have been looking all around websites that focus on the Pokemon TCG, and there are barely any articles that talk about a similar deck between two formats. The card of choice today is the one and only Darkrai EX from Breakpoint! This card is a very strong EX Pokemon sitting at a whopping 180 HP, with an attack that feeds on energy manipulation, and another attack that is extremely vicious if your opponent’s Active Pokemon is Asleep! Darkrai EX is one of my favourite Pokemon cards printed over the past few years because it seems like it is always a contender and it is versatile in many situations! I hope you thoroughly enjoy all of my insight below on both formats, and can use this information to help you gain some precious Championship Points this year.

2. Thoughts on the Standard Metagame

I have personally found our new 2016-2017 Standard format to be quite refreshing compared to last year’s Standard format, where we had multiple decks that were all Rock-Paper-Scissors matchups to each other. This format is a little bit similar in regards to a few Rock-Paper-Scissors matchups, but there are at least 15+ decks that can be played within TIER 1 – TIER 3. It is really nice have a variety of decks to choose from going into a tournament, and facing a variety of decks from your opponents throughout the day too.

However, don’t think that I think this is the best format or that there are no issues in the way that cards interact with each other in this format. The biggest issue in Standard is the lack of Pokemon Tool removal cards in general, which allows Garbodor to run rampant against Ability-based decks such as Greninja or Volcanion. This issue will only grow as more and more powerful Pokemon with strong Abilities are printed, allowing Garbodor to continuously become a bigger threat.

How can we fix this?!?! Unfortunately, we can’t fix having no Tool Scrapper, Xerosic, or Startling Megaphone in format to deal with Garbodor easily. We do have some options in the form of a Pokemon attack from Beedrill EX XY-PR, Minccino FCO, and Mr. Mime PRC. I personally use Minccino due to its single retreat cost and single prize-card attacker status , but I do believe both Beedrill EX and Mr. Mime will have their own place in specific decks unless we get some Tool Removal support in the form of a Trainer Card.

Another super cool thing about this new Standard format is that Mega Evolution Decks have become very strong due to cutthroat decks like Night March rotating into Expanded! We have Mega Mewtwo EX, Mega Scizor EX, Mega Rayquaza EX, and Mega Gardevoir EX all being actively played within tournaments this year alone! I know we have seen a few other Mega Pokemon being played last year such as Mega Manectric or even Mega Rayquaza, but I feel Mega Pokemon are somewhat free to be played without much stopping them. That being said, let me talk about a deck that does pretty decent against Mega Pokemon decks…

3. Standard Darkrai/Giratina Skelton Decklist

I personally believe every deck has a minimum core; something that everyone can just start off with and then add in some flavour of their own, or give themselves space to deal with what they want to deal with. The list below is very bare, but it allows you to have your own take on the deck and make it work for you.

Pokémon – 4 Trainers – 26 Energy – 12
2 Darkrai EX 4 Professor Sycamore 4 VS Seeker 9 Darkness
1 Giratina EX 3 N 4 Max Elixir 3 Double Dragon
1 Shaymin EX ROS 1 Lysandre 4 Ultra Ball
3 Trainers’ Mail
2 Fighting Fury Belt
1 Super Rod
18  0pen spots

As you can see, this deck has space for another 18 cards or otherwise it’s missing over 25% of the deck. I believe the above cards are truly necessary for the functionality of the deck, and taking out anything besides a copy of a “4-of Trainer Card” would alter the deck negatively.

For those readers who are new to this deck or would appreciate a recap on how the deck generally works: the deck is based on using Max Elixir and attaching Double Dragon Energy to Giratina ex to power up a huge whopping Dark Pulse from Darkrai EX. The deck is also extremely versatile by allowing yourself to power up just a straight Giratina EX to combat Mega Evolution Pokemon and/or decks that rely on Special Energy Cards as their only form of acceleration. This deck is a very quick deck that can take Prize Cards out of nowhere or disrupt a game so badly that you win due to your opponent having no options.

This deck has been severely underplayed and undervalued, until it placed extremely well at the very current Florida Regionals. Before Florida, this very strong deck had received almost no major coverage on any website since it did well at the Origins Game Fair “Win-a-Trip” event and US Nationals. This deck is a strong contender in this format due to the following core reasons:

private accessYou must have a Stage 2 Membership to see the rest of this post. If you don't have a Stage 2 account, you can Sign Up for one here.