How to build standard format decks for the Pokemon Trading Card Game
You have 60 cards in your deck. You draw 1 card each turn. This is not enough.
You play DRAW Supporters to get 6-7 cards randomly from your deck (Cynthia, Sycamore, and N)
Those 6 cards should give you:
- 1 DRAW Supporter for next turn.
- 1 Energy Card.
- 1 Pokemon or Item that searches for Pokemon
- 3 Anything Else (More Pokemon, Poke Tools, Items, Extras)
15 Draw Support (Tapu Lele GX, Oranguru and Ultra Ball INCLUDED)
12-18 Total Pokemon
12 Total Energies
About 30 Total Trainers
Deck thinner items with Octillery or Oranguru drastically increases card draws throughout the game.
Copy Paste Trainer Deck TEMPLATEs
Most the deck is done for you! Save a base trainer template to copy for every new deck.
Bridgette templates run 2-3 Tapu Lele GX and 2-3 Bridgette count to open turn one with a big bench most of the time.
- Opens with strong bench turn 1 most of the time
- Relies on higher 2-3 Tapu Lele GX to land Bridgette, may take up more bench space
- Bridgette is dead weight later in the game
- Vulnerable to ability lock or pressure (go away Glaceon GX and Garbotoxin Garbodor)
- Zoroark GX works well by transmuting extra Bridgettes
Nest Ball template runs high Nest Ball to fill bench early, but opens turn one with a draw supporter, allowing access to more cards via both starting and fresh new hand.
- Opens with twice as many cards via draw supporter
- Has 1-2 Tapu Lele GX for Ultra Ball combo
- Nest Ball is useful throughout the game
- Vulnerable to item lock or pressure (you stink Trashalanche Garbodor)
- May still incorporate 1 Brigette with 2 Tapu Lele GX, but not solely focus on this opener
Key parts of Trainer Template
Draw Supporters: You need to play these cards every turn. They give you lots of cards to play
Cards: 4 Cynthia, 3 N, 3 Sycamore
Recommended: 10 with Draw Support Pokemon, 15 for Pure Supporter Build
Draw Support Pokemon: Bonus Draw / Supporter Replacement
Cards: coconut master, banana master, Sushi Master, Berry Master
2 Tapu Lele GX: Ultra ball becomes any Supporter You want
1 Oranguru: Ultra BAll and deck thinners trigger 5-10 extra cards throughout the match
1-2 Sushi Master: Ultra ball and deck thinners Trigger LOTS of extra cards
2-3 Zoroark GX: Who cares about Ultra Ball. Trades useless cards in your hand for 2 extra draw each turn
Energy Cards: Your Pokemon Energies need to attack. and special Motivation
Recommended: 12 Energy Cards average, 4-10 for unique low energy attackers, 14 for heavy energy decks (Volcanion and Volcanion EX, Turbo Darkrai, Turbo Raichu)
Energy Bonus: Your Pokemon need to Attack quickly
Key: Double Colorless Energy, Max Elixir
Recommended: varies with deck, 4 Usually
Example: 4 Double Colorless Energies or 4 Max Elixirs
Others: Many extra methods exist: Sogaleo GX, Lurantis GX, Volcanion, vikavolt, Monster energy drinks
Utility Trainers: Game Changing Effects You need such as:
Finishing Bench Pokemon
Setting up Bench
Denying Prize cards
Key: 2-3 Guzma, 1-2 Field Blowers
Recommended: See above
Others: Professor Kukui, kiawe, Justin Bieber
(crucial) Deck tHinner Items:
Combos with Oranguru and Octillery by dumping your Hand
Drastically affects deck setup Speed
Get the right card You need in play
enhance deck flow by thinning deck
Key: Ultra Ball, Nest Ball, Timer Ball, Evo Soda, MAx Elixir, Rotom Dex Poke Finder Mode, Energy Loto, Bowling Ball
Retreat: Be able to switch Pokemon when needed
Deny opponent prize cards
Switch a big Pokemon into battle
Counter status effects
Cards: Switch, Float, guzma, and Escape Rope
Recommended: 3+ Cards
Others: Manaphy, Fairy Garden, Zoroark, Sogaleo GX, armed Get away minivan
Stadium: Powerful Constant bonus
stadiums are game changing, you cannot allow your opponent to maintain one
Cards: field blower (removes it), brooklet hill, Apca, Altar of moone and sunne
Recommended: 2-4 Cards
Others: po town, scorched earth, fairy garden, reverse valley, Shrine of attractive young maidens
combat Pokemon Tools: Greatly Enhances pokemon
Beef up your Pokemon with powerful effects
Cards: Choice Band, Fight Fury Belt, Body Building Dumb bells, Bursting Balloon, Poison Barb
Recommended: 2-4 Cards
Others: Weakness Policy, Jedi Master light sabers
RECYCLE Trainers: Recover cards from the discard for longer games
You need your energies and pokemon back after they are knocked out
Cards: Super Rod, Rescue Stretcher, Special Charge
Recommended: 1-2 Cards
Others: Energy Recycler, Energy Retrieval, Fisherman, Brock
(expanded) Extra deck thinners: Greatly Improve Card flow
Got Extra space? These Will thin your deck to home into your best cards. Most were rotated recently
Cards: Trainer Mail, acro Bike, Unown, shipping box bubble wrap
Setting up Pokemon in Your deck
Decks focus on one single Core attacking pokemon.
3-4 Copies are these are in a deck.
Decks may have alternate attacking Pokemon that share similar energy costs, often with a useful special attack.
1-3 are in a deck, if any
Decks may have support Pokemon with abilities that help the core attacking Pokemon.
2-3 of these are in a deck, if any
Troubleshooting Your deck
Losing: what card did you need in your hand?
Success: you might have an awesome deck!
Keep track of what you need
Improve your deck by adjusting
You have no cards to play in your hand?
Without any tapu lele, oranuguru, or Octillery, about 15 draw supports is NECESSARy for deck flow ( sycamore, n, Cynthia)
You have the wrong cards to play in your hand?
You have Too Much of Something. Replace it with what your are missing.
Your setup too slow?
Add deck Thinners, Item Trainers that Represent Cards You want. Try an extra Nest Ball and evosoda instead of extra Pokemon or energy loto for DCE
Deck thinners shrink your hand quickly, allow big card combos with Oranguru and Octillery
Not enough damage?
you need to at least 2 hit ko gx Pokemon: 90 for most basic gx, 110 for most stage 1 gx, 130 for most stage 2 gx
Most competitive decks can 1 hit ko basic and stage 1 gx pokemon with 180-210 damage attacks
add damage Poke Tool (Choice Band)
Try Spread Damage (Tapu koko Promo and necrozma gx)
Pokemon That Increase Damage (Lurantis Promo, Decidueye GX, Empoleon, Salazzle)
All Guzma in the back of your deck when you really really need it?
You need more Swag dude. Bummer though
Good luck and have fun!