Sunday, October 9, 2011

Lucky 1st place finish with Gothitelle at Surrey's Battle Roads Tournament - Part 1

After the BR at Tukwila, I took my Gothitelle deck and tweaked it slightly. The big change to the deck was the addition of a single Switch. I tried out a few other changes but most of them didn’t stick. Mostly, I swapped around the draw supports a bit and called it a day (in fact, when I was writing up the list, I was actually surprised that I was no longer running four Sage’s, but I shrugged and trusted that I must have had a good reason to do so at some point).


Zekrom did very well in Tukwila and has done extremely well in most other BRs. I was tempted to try it again and even went as far as to revamp my old list from the first Vancouver BR. Even though it tested well, I was still nervous. Going 2-3 with a deck previously will do that to you. Plus, I saw lots of Reshiphlosions and Stage 1’s/Donphans in the first BR, which didn’t really offer Zekrom awesome match ups across the board. Rather, it was more conducive to Goth. Thus, Goth it was!

Truth be told, I was only fearful of Mewplume decks. I had a suspicion, based on the previous BR and from league games, that two players might try Mew decks. However, I was hopeful that their poor Stage 1 and Reshiphlosion match ups would mean that I would avoid them all day, provided that I win first round and keep a good resistance.

Seriously, screw this guy

Anyways, pairings go up a bit late and I get paired up with Cor Vanderwolf, a player from my local league. Seriously? I think I played him at every tournament in Surrey (mind you, I’ve only gone to 2-3 tournaments there :p)

Round 1 vs. Cor Vanderwolf (Ross.dec –SEL +KGL)
Cor and the rest of the BTCG guys have been messing around with Ross’s deck ever since they saw him top cut at World’s this year. After Emerging Powers released, they tried out Beartic with the deck and now they were trying out a deck out/disruption strategy with Kyogre Groudon Legend.

I have a strong belief that Gothitelle has a strong advantage over Vileplume/Reuniclus decks and, unfortunately for Cor, this seems to be the case for most of the day. I start off Cleffa against his Oddish and draw into a Solosis. With a strong hand and a confident read that he would have no trainers, I elected to skip the Pichu and set up manually so that he would have less chances to set up Vileplume quickly. I Cell Cultured a second Solosis on the first turn and KO’d the Oddish on the second turn.

Cor drops the expected Twins (he had eight cards in hand, but I decided killing Oddish was worth the risk), but unfortunately one of his Oddish was prized. He attempts to get set up anyways with a Gloom on his bench but my Gothitelle gets set up and I catcher the Gloom and swung for weakness for the KO.

Cor manually sets up a Zekrom with two rainbow energies while I picked apart his bench, denying him Reuncilus and other goodies. I was fearful of his Zekrom with Black Belt but I had no damage on my side to knock out my own Pokemon to even out the prizes. Luckily, Cor whiffs with Zekrom active and scoops.


Round 2 vs. Simon Chai (Donphans and Dragons)
Another friend :(. Simon is a super friendly and uber nice guy from the Surrey area. He spends a lot of time teaching kids to playing and is very supportive. I believe he is a major contributing factor to how well the Pokemon community has grown in the area. Unfortunately, I had to face him.

Apparently Simon got into the second round by decking out another pal, Joseph, from a losing position. They discussed this openly but I wasn’t sure if Joey accidently decked himself or if Simon had some sort discard tech. I knew that I had to keep my deck size in mind throughout our game.

I start again and collector for the Pichu and some cards that I like to have in my hand. I use playground and he sets up four Phanpys and one Cleffa to back up his active Reshiram. On the next turn, I managed to Eek myself into a hand that enabled me to set up both Gothitelle and Reuniclus. Simon opts to swing into my Goth, which allowed me to KO Pichu on my bench and start my Twin chain. I believe I grabbed mostly energies with Twins.

We joked around a bit during our game, it was nice to relax a bit and chat. I said that he should name his deck Advanced Donphans and Dragons, or AD&D for short. I also noted how nice and trusting he was every time he declined to cut my deck after shuffling. He didn’t decline every time, probably about 70-80% of the time.

AD&D, the non-disorder one

I took care to catcher up any Phanpys or Donphans with two energies, as I didn’t really want to have to deal with heavy impact. However, my resources run dry finally and I had to KO the Cleffa that woke up while he had a Donphan on the bench with two fighting energies. Before I attacked, however, I Seekered up my Duosion and dropped Solosis back down so that I could damage swap and KO it. After I attacked, we were even in prizes at 3-3.

Simon then played his turn very quickly, attaching the third fighting to Donphan and dropping the Black Belt before announcing his attack. “Whoa!” I said, as I pointed out that we were even on prizes since I had graciously given him a free prize. Simon reeled back at the misplay and there wasn’t much he could do except carry out the attack. I had enough energies on my Goth to one shot the Donphan and did exactly that after moving the damage off.

With no other method to get over the 130 wall before I could grab two more prizes, Simon scoops. True to his nature, he was all praise and said that he could see me going all the way with the deck. I brushed it off and told him that I would be happy just to do better than I did in my previous tournament.


Round 3 vs. Garik Smith-Manchip (Kingdra/Yanmega)
Yet another pal! Originally I was downpaired to a person that I didn’t know. However, one of the matches from the previous round was recorded incorrectly so there was a repairing. Unfortunately, I was still downpaired! This made me a bit sad, as it meant my resistance wouldn’t be as good and there was a chance that I might miss top cut unless I X-0 the tournament.

Garik was actually the winner of the first Vancouver BR and was playing the same deck that he ran back then. With Yanmega around, I knew that I had to keep a few things in mind. Firstly, I have to make sure that he wouldn’t be able to snipe anything valuable on the bench easily. Secondly, I cannot stock up any cards in my hands due to Judge. In other words, no Twins chain.

We play down one Pokemon each and I get my third start of the day! This was a crucial start, as I turned over Solosis to his Tyrogue. Seriously, who runs Tyrogue in this format? Apparently Garik did. After dodging the donk, I communicated for a Pichu and we both fill our bench. Garik got three Horseas and two Yanmas and KO’d the Pichu with his Tyrogue. This allowed me to use Twins. I grabbed what I needed to get Gothitelle up and, instead of getting another Twins, opted to get Tropical Beach.

Even against Judges, I managed to get my Catchers and Junk Arms going and took out every Seadra I saw before finally taking out the last Horsea he had. I absorbed 70 damage every turn and Seekered a Zekrom once to wipe the damage. Garik promotes a Reshiram in an attempt to wall against me taking the last prize, but I KO’d one of my bench Pokemon and dropped a Shaymin to move some energies around and score the final KO.



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