Hey everyone! As my first article for Cut or Tap, I’m super excited to bring you all a comprehensive deck rundown and tournament report on the Regigigas/Hoopa stall deck that I used to get 2nd place at this past weekend’s Denver Regional Championship. This might be an unpopular opinion, but I really love the slow, methodical play-style of the deck, and I think that it’s well positioned to take down any tournament where the general meta-game is not well prepared for it. I’m going to start by outlining the list, card choices, and match ups in depth, then I’ll run through my weekend with the deck. Let’s get right into it!
Regi-Stall – 2nd Place Denver Regionals
|Pokémon – 14||Trainers – 42||Energy – 4|
|4||Regigigas (CRI 84)||1||Faba||1||Counter Gain||2||Double Colorless|
|3||Hoopa (SLG 55)||1||Mars||2||Rescue Stretcher||2||Metal|
|2||Shuckle GX (LOT 17)||2||Gladion||2||Nest Ball|
|1||Magikarp & Wailord GX||2||Guzma||3||Ancient Crystal|
|1||Lugia GX (LOT 159)||2||Tate & Liza||3||Counter Catcher|
|1||Larvitar (LOT 115)||2||Acerola||4||Max Potion|
|1||Girafarig (LOT 94)||3||Plumeria|
|1||Unown (LOT 91)||3||Lusamine||1||Wondrous Labrynth|
|4||Bill’s Analysis||1||Mt. Cornet|
|4||Steven’s Resolve||1||Shrine of Punishment|
~ 4 Regigigas, 3 Hoopa ~
These are your main “walls” against the majority of decks. You don’t usually need such high counts in games, but it increases your odds of starting them and finding then early. Many decks can only beat stall if it bricks and can’t find more Pokemon, so decreasing the odds of that happening is really important.
~ 2 Shuckle GX ~
I decided on running 2 Shuckle (as opposed to only 1) because it’s a good wall against Zoroark and Zapdos, and it’s attacks can actually be quite useful at times (especially to set up damage for Larvitar on targets such as Tapu Koko prism star). That being said, I’m not a huge fan of Shuckle in the deck because it gives up 2 prizes if your opponent manages to kill it, as opposed to the one prize from Regigigas or Hoopa. Being able to accept sacrificing a wall to better set up your game state is very important, and Shuckle makes it much harder to do so due to the 2 prizes. In hindsight, 1 Shuckle was probably a better call for Denver, but its utility will likely shift along with the meta.
~ 1 Magikarp & Wailord GX ~
Much like Shuckle, this was not often my go-to “wall”, because if you are ever unable to heal it and your opponent takes 3 prizes it is devastating, to the point that you’ll likely lose even very good match ups. However, it does have a very important role – being a final wall that is even harder to get through. If your opponent is only at 1 prize remaining, the extra prizes from Wailord & Magikarp over a Regigigas do not matter, and the extra tankiness may be enough to inch out games you may lose otherwise. It is certainly not a mandatory inclusion in the deck, but it is nice to have.
~ 1 Lugia GX ~
Any variant of Stall really needs either Articuno GX or Lugia GX to have the option to clear out one big attacker that might otherwise sweep you. Personally, I like Articuno more between the two – it automatically gets itself active and it doesn’t need counter gain, so you need two fewer combo cards to pull it off as opposed to Lugia. Lost Purge’s effect is an added benefit, but rarely matters outside of the Malamar match up. All that being said, with Articuno you need to use rainbow energy whereas Lugia can use DCE, so running DCE for Larvitar forces us to use Lugua instead of Articuno.
~ 1 Larvitar, 1 Shrine of Punishment ~
Larvitar, combined with shrine, is hands down the spiciest tech in the entire deck. It’s inclusion was prompted by one deck and one deck only: Pikarom. Without Larvitar, Pikarom is very difficult – they’re fast, have tons of energy acceleration to outpace Plumeria, have Full Voltage to replenish their board, Zeraora’s ability to make stalling something active nearly impossible, and Tapu Koko Prism Star, which is a very effective attacker against us. Larvitar, in my experience, makes this match up in fact favorable. I’ll explain more detail in the match ups section; in short the ability to actually knock stuff out against PilaRom is incredible, and it is not uncommon to beat PikaRom by actually taking six prize cards! Larvitar can be slightly useful in other match ups, but it’s mainly here for lightning decks.
~ 1 Girafarig ~
Although it can be nice in other niche situations, Girafarig is mainly in the deck for mirrors and Malamar. Against mirror, you can simply Get Lost anything they play (using Mars as well usually), meaning you can either outpace them to Unown HAND or just eventually deck them out. Against Malamar, it is incredibly useful to be able to Get Lost some Psychic Energy to reduce your opponent’s options for the rest of the game.
~ 1 Unown (HAND) ~
Unown is essentially only in the deck to give you a concrete win condition that you can work towards if you don’t need to react to what your opponent is doing, which can be very nice when you’re working in tightly timed games. However, I only won with Unown 3 games out of the entire tournament. As nice as having a concrete win condition is, it kind of is a luxury, and removing it would not kill the deck by any means.
~ 1 Counter Gain, 2 Rescue Stretcher, 2 DCE ~
These counts allow us to realistically attack with Larvitar 3 separate times in a game, which can be crucial against decks like PikaRom depending on how your opponent plays it. Counter Gain and DCE are also needed for Lugia, but like I already stated, if I were not running Larvitar I would use Articuno and Rainbow instead.
~ 1 Mt. Coronet, 2 Metal Energy ~
This is actually one of my favorite subtle parts of the deck. Against match ups that don’t apply a ton of pressure super early, you can get these in your hand with Steven’s (or by using your opponent’s Viridian Forest), then use them to consistently stream Plumeria for the rest of the game.
~ 2 Acerola ~
This count might seem low to some people, but the truth is that extra Acerola don’t do much to get you to a win condition. It gives you one extra heal card, but if Lusamine + Acerola loop isn’t enough to deal with whatever your opponent is doing, having another Acerola won’t help you much. Having higher Acerola counts isn’t necessarily bad in my opinion, but it seems unnecessary in a deck tight on space.
~ Enhanced Hammer, Team Skull Grunt, Mount Lanakila ~
Almost every Stall list I’ve seen runs these, but I decided not to. My logic was that none of them really did much of anything to help match ups I was worried about; they only helped in match ups I felt I beat to begin with. Because of this, I decided to cut them to have space to tech for match ups I was more worried about. In hindsight, both Team Skull Grunt and Enhanced Hammer would have helped immensely against DDG’s Zorocontrol deck that I lost to in finals, but I believe the decision not to include these based on the meta I expected was correct.
~ Crushing Hammer ~
I think that Crushing Hammer is a fine card in the deck, but you have to commit to having 4 of them to rely on a few hitting, which is far more space than I wanted to devote to such a hit or miss effect. If there were match ups I felt more instant energy removal would help against I would have certainly included Crushing Hammer, but the cost of 4 deck slots greatly outweighs the benefit to me.
Durant fills a similar role as Unown HAND being a strategy that you can actively pursue to bring yourself closer to a win condition. I do not believe that the two are mutually exclusive, but due to space constraints and not wanting to start a low HP basic too often, I limited myself to one or the other. I ended up picking Unown since Durant felt like it didn’t do very much unless I had milled all of my opponent’s resources.
General Lusamine Tips
Players seem to think that the infinite Lusamine loop is incredibly overpowered and will single-handedly win any late-game scenario. This is blatantly untrue. The infinite stream of resources from Lusamine is undeniably powerful in the late game, but it is also incredibly slow. The resources from Lusamine cannot win you the game if they do not come fast enough to answer whatever your opponent is doing. Because of this, our strategy with the deck is almost always to set up a late game “checkmate” scenario in which our slow resources from Lusamine are enough to outpace anything our opponent can do.
For example, if we can set up an end game scenario where our opponent cannot attack or cannot two-shot our walls (allowing Lusamine + Acerola loop to out heal them), the Lusamine loop will win us the game. However, if in the late game we are staring down a faster threat (such as a charged Tapu Koko Prism Star with an ample supply of energy) that we have no immediate answer to, no amount of Lusamine will save us. While playing the deck, you should always think what late game scenarios you can arrive at to achieve victory, and what route of play (both by you and by your opponent) will get you there. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the individual match ups.