Written by Chris Taporco
Hi Guys! My name is Chris Taporco, one of the founding members of Some1sPC. For those of you that know me, know that I have “small” obsession with Rainbow Road. For those of you that don’t, you’re about to find out. In this article, I’ll start by discussing the two key cards that will be your deck’s bench loading engine. That will be followed by a deep dive into my build of choice and why I choose the cards I did. Finally, I’ll wrap it all up with a brief look into the relevant matchups in this format. This won’t be a short read. Consider this a Road Trip, so buckle up.
At First Glance
Since the release of BKT Xerneas, I’ve been captivated by its attack: Rainbow Force. Not only does the name of this attack roll off the tongue, but the damage output is ridiculous. For a single fairy and two colorless energy, Rainbow Force does 10 + 30 damage for each different type of Pokémon on your bench. With Sky Field and dual type Pokémon in the card pool, there’s a potential maximum output of 340 damage! Realistically though, you’ll only need seven different types to knock out most relevant Pokémon in the format (220 being the magic number).
“But Chris, seven different types!? That’s still a lot of Pokémon!”
Agreed! It is a lot of types to have on your bench at one time, but luckily we have cards that make this task less of a chore (Thank you Steam Siege!). Let’s start with the engines that’ll get us there.
What’s under the hood?
Before we go over specific Pokémon, we need to explore ways to get them on to the bench. There are two key cards that drive the bench loading strategy: Brigette and Hoopa-EX. In my opinion, the way the deck is built is determined by which of these cards you choose to accelerate your bench loading.
“Wait, so you’re telling me I have to choose between these two cards? Why not both?”
Both cards are engines to the deck. Each engine needs specific parts to ensure it is tuned properly. Sure you could use both cards, but you’ll be limiting yourself on maximizing the potential each card has to offer. However, before I dive into each of these engines, I want to address the commonalities between them. In order to do so, I’ve set up a skeleton list below:
4 Xerneas BKT
2 Shaymin-EX ROS
1 Volcanion-EX STS
1 Jirachi PR
1 Joltik STS
1 Galvantula STS
4 Professor Sycamore
4 Ultra Ball
4 VS Seeker
2 Float Stone
2-3 Trainers Mail
2-3 Max Elixir
2 Exp Share
1 Special Charge
4 Sky Field
7-8 Fairy Energy
4 Double Colorless Energy
This Skeleton list represents what I believe to be the staples in this deck. It is the product of hours of playtesting and I feel that it ensures consistency no matter which engine you choose to rev up your deck. Let’s take a look at the Pokémon line up.
Xerneas – Running four here is self-explanatory.Xerneas is your main attacker and thus you want to maximize your potential of drawing it and setting it up via manual energy attachment, Exp Share, or Max Elixir.
Shaymin-EX – It’s in here at two for explosive consistency. Sure you could use Octillery to try give you the prize trade advantage, but since Octillery is a water type, it takes away from the utility that Volcanion-EX provides with its Basic/Dual Type Status. Since Octillery is a Stage 1, it isn’t as explosive as Shaymin-EX and can hinder your early game strategy.
Volcanion-EX– There isn’t really much to say about this card. While Volcanion-EX will provide no attack value whatsoever, its dual type status combined with being a Basic Pokémon make it a staple in this deck. All you need to do is bench it and it provides + 60 damage. Volcanion-EX is also searchable via Hoopa-EX so a simple Scoundrel Ring into it plus two other types is an instant 150 damage for Rainbow Force.
Jirachi – Not only does Jirachi provide a steel type for damage purposes, Stardust can slow down your opponent enough to rebuild your army of Xerneas. It is formidable against the likes of Giratina, M Mewtwo, and M Rayquaza. Its ability to control the pace of the game can ensure you have multiple Xerneas ready to go to spam knockouts. Sure your opponent can play Pokemon Ranger to knock it out, but now they wasted a supporter for a single prize and they have sacrificed their current attacker to your benched Xerneas.
Galvantula – The evolved form of everyone’s favorite Night Marcher. Galvantula is the only Stage 1, dual type Pokémon I consider a staple in this deck. On top of Joltik being oddly adorable for being a bug, it also has free retreat. Galvantula itself only has a retreat cost of one energy which is extremely manageable. Since it is both a lightning and a grass type, it has the typing advantage over the likes of Greninja, M Rayquaza, and Shaymin-EX. For a single colorless energy, Galvantula’s attack (Double Thread) does 30 damage to two of your opponents benched Pokémon while still applying weakness and resistance. This type of damage spread can help you set up numbers with Rainbow Force mid or late game. It can also take easy KO’s on Froakie and Shaymin-EX if you can trap you opponents Pokémon active with a cute Lysandre play. I would like to reiterate how crucial the bench damage it can produce is. There will be times when you can’t produce OHKO numbers, and having the foresight during a game to Double Tread can swing the mid/late game into your favor without needing as many resources.
At this point you’ll notice there are seven different Pokémon types used so far. The number of different types we want to hit is ten. By utilizing ten different types, we can account for prizing variance and ensure that we are going to hit our magic number of 220 consistently. The other three Pokémon that will make up the difference will depend on which engine you choose.
Choosing Brigette – Brigette allows you to grab three Basic non EX Pokémon (or one Pokémon-EX) from your deck and put them (or it) on your bench. When utilizing Brigette, you’ll want to run at least two and play more non EX Pokémon. It’ll set you up by grabbing secondary attackers and your Basics for your evolution lines.
The key Pokémon that the Brigette engine allows you to use are Mew, Carbink, and Bisharp. Mew will essentially be your fifth attacker outside of Xerneas by copying Rainbow Force. It can also copy Shaymin-EX or Jirachi to use Sky Return or Stardust respectively. Utilizing Mew to copy the likes of Jirachi can essentially help you manage your energy attachment efficiently. Instead of attaching to Jirachi for the turn and losing out on that energy (outside of Ninja Boy), you can effectively attach energy to Mew to stardust then attach a DCE on the following turn to copy Rainbow Force. Carbink can help against decks that are running Crushing Hammer or Team Flare Grunt. With the rise in M Scizor and Darkrai/Giratina Decks using energy disruption, having Carbink around can disrupt their disruption. Bisharp is a Stage 1 Pokémon that is both a dark and a steel type with the attack Retaliate. For a single colorless energy, Retaliate will do 30 + 60 damage if any of your Pokémon are knocked out by an opponent’s attack during their previous turn. It can serve as a finisher for those rare times you find yourself not able to hit numbers with Xerneas and also just straight up knock out a Gardevoir-EX or Xerneas BREAK. Additionally, its retreat cost is manageable at two energy so you can sacrifice a DCE when times are tough to ensure healthy progression of your game state.
Brigette, however, does come with some drawbacks. It’s a supporter so using it means that you can no longer use Sycamore or N for the turn. This means your hand needs to be innately decent before you decide to play Brigette. You need to have the foresight to be able to advance your next turn before committing to playing it as your supporter for your turn. Brigette also takes up more space in the deck than Hoopa-EX would. It will cut into your overall Trainer count and take up slots that you could use for more tech or consistency. Overall, I wouldn’t use Brigette as my engine of choice because I want to make room for as much consistency and tech as possible.
Choosing Hoopa-EX – Hoopa-EX is definitely my engine of choice. Hoopa-EX’s Scoundrel Ring Ability lets you search your deck for up to three Pokémon EX and put them into your hand. As I’ve said earlier in my Volcanion-EX explanation, playing Hoopa-EX can potentially load your bench with five different types. This means a simple Ultra Ball into Hoopa-EX can add 150 damage to the Rainbow Force damage output. Nine times out of ten, playing Hoopa-EX results in grabbing Shaymin-EX as one of the Pokémon EX. This means you’ll be able to advance your board state while still replenishing your hand. In addition to loading the bench and drawing cards, Hoopa-EX does not cost you your Supporter for the turn nor does it cut into your Trainer count.
Using Hoopa-EX does mean you have to forfeit the likes of Mew, Carbink and Bisharp. Since Hoopa-EX will already serve as the Psychic type of this deck, Mew has to be excluded in order to fit ten different types into this deck. As for Carbink and Bisharp, then need to be dropped to make room for more Pokémon EX to take full advantage of Scoundrel Ring. The Pokémon that take the place of these two are Yveltal-EX and Flygon-EX. Running Yveltal-EX means you have to drop one of your eight Fairy energy for a single Darkness Energy. The tradeoff is worth it to be able utilize both Evil Ball and Y Cyclone. Both attacks serve the purpose of making KO’s easier for Xerneas, but the MVP attack has to go to Y Cyclone. You can Y Cyclone to move a DCE to a benched Xerneas while protecting said Xerneas from damage. It’s an attack that allows you to do damage and set up your next set of attackers all while providing a big body to absorb damage from your opponents Pokémon. Flygon-EX probably made you think I’m a little crazy. Honestly, I am, but in my search to fit more Pokémon EX in this deck, I went down a road that examined all possible Pokémon EX that could provide added value. Ultimately I didn’t even find Flygon-EX in my search, it was recommended to me by Brent Halliburton. Shout out to him for pointing to a very useful Dragon type to be my tenth Pokémon type. Flygon-EX’s ability, Voice of the Sands, only works when it’s active and lets you make your opponent switch their active Pokémon with one of their benched Pokémon. It’s basically escape rope that only effects your opponent. This ability can help you get out of a Jirachi Stardust Stall or even buy you time when your back is against the wall by forcing your opponent to switch into a useless Pokémon. Overall, Hoopa-EX is definitely the more explosive choice between these two engines. At the cost of losing a fifth attacker, energy disruption protection, and a retaliate attacker, you gain a searchable consistent engine that still allows you to utilize a supporter for the turn.
Although its pros outweigh its cons, Hoopa-EX has its drawbacks. Starting and or prizing Hoopa-Ex can put a damper on the explosiveness of the deck. Perhaps the more substantial drawback is the presence of Silent Lab, Hex Maniac, and Garbodor in the format. A well timed Hex Maniac can rain on your parade, but an early Garbodor is even more devastating. Despite these drawbacks, Hoopa-EX is still, by far, the better engine to use for this deck.
From this point on I’m going to focus on the engine of my choice and go over how I would apply the Hoopa-EX engine to the skeleton list I provided earlier. As much as I would love to provide a more insight into the Brigette engine, I honestly could not come up with a build that I’d be proud to share with you. Instead, I hope that the insight I provided could help you get started if you choose that route. With that said, I’m proud to share with you my Hoopa-EX Rainbow Road list:
2 Shaymin-EX ROS
1 Volcanion-EX STS
1 Jirachi PR
1 Joltik STS
1 Galvantula STS
1 Hoopa-EX AOR
1 Flygon-EX PR
4 Professor Sycamore
4 Ultra Ball
4 VS Seeker
2 Float Stone
3 Trainers Mail
3 Max Elixir
2 Exp Share
1 Super Rod
1 Special Charge
4 Sky Field
7 Fairy Energy
1 Darkness Energy
4 Double Colorless Energy
By this point, you’ll have noticed my focus has been on explaining the Pokémon. I’d now like to spend time discussing the Supporters, Items, and Stadiums that are in this deck.
Professor Sycamore – Hands down the best consistency card in the game. His inclusion at four should be no surprise here. With the support of both Super Rod and Karen, you have a safety net that allows you to discard hands that would otherwise be rough to discard in order to progress your turn appropriately.
N – Here we have N at two. There’s definitely an argument to run three for consistency sake, but Hoopa-EX and Shaymin-EX provide more than enough consistency to make up for the absence of the third N. Additionally, I fully expect this deck to gain the prize lead quickly. This means that a mid/late game N wouldn’t be beneficial for you. With that said, running two is the perfect amount to disrupt your opponent and not discard valuable resources.
Lysandre – In a deck that punches this hard, running two Lysandre is absolutely necessary. You want to be able to draw into this card early and having two of these along with Trainers’ Mail increases your chances of doing so. You do not want to give your opponent the time to build threats on their bench. You do not want to give your opponent time to set up Garbodor. A Garbodor combined with a Parallel City can mean the end of you.
Teammates – Due to the fragile nature of Xerneas in combination with its reliance on DCE, Teammates becomes a staple in this deck. Most of the time you’re only missing a single piece to the puzzle to stream back to back KO’s and Teammates will get you there.
Karen – Karen lets you and your opponent shuffle all Pokémon in the discard pile back into their respective decks. Without this card, I wouldn’t consider running this deck. Karen is hands down a game changer in a field bound to see copious amounts of Parallel City. It doesn’t matter how consistently you can load your bench if all of your Pokémon were forced into the discard. With Karen around, I have the safety net to put all the Pokémon in my discard back into my deck. Since I’m running the Hoopa-EX engine, reloading the bench is again effortless with the Pokémon I need safely back in the deck.
“Woah Chris, hold up. What about Ninja Boy and Pokémon Ranger!?”
Ninja Boy was definitely considered in this deck, but, after hours of testing, I found that it was relatively lack luster in the Standard version of this deck. I would basically only use it when I couldn’t draw a better supporter hope that I could Sky Return my way into one. Sure there’s still an argument for it because its potential is still yet to be untapped, but as I see it now, it doesn’t belong in this build.
Pokémon Ranger was also considered to ensure that Giratina-EX’s Chaos Wheel or Jolteon-EX’s Flash Ray doesn’t shut me down. What I soon realized is that I could let Jirachi take care of those threats for me. Granted Jirachi is not guaranteed to get me out of the either of the locks, its utility gives me more space in my deck for consistency and tech. Again, you can run this card if you really feel the need to, but do you really want to sacrifice consistency when you already have Jirachi to get you out of trouble?
I think that Ultra Ball, VS Seeker and Trainers’ Mail are all self-explanatory. They are essentially staples in almost every deck so I won’t waste your time. With that said, the remaining items need some explanation:
Float Stone – I only run two here to make room for switch. Retreating is extremely important in this deck as we have a lot of Pokemon that aren’t meant for attacking. You want to be able to retreat at a moment’s notice and put a Xerneas active to take a KO. With no tool removal currently in the game, Float Stone is definitely a strong play but it still has some draw backs. Not being able to retreat if a Fright Night Yveltal is active or a Paralysis by Froakie’s Bubble attack can really set you back for some hurt. Luckily Flygon-EX, Switch, and Lysandre can get you around Fright Night and Froakie’s paralysis relies on a coin flip.
Max Elixir – Yup I only run three, not the full four. Max Elixir is amazing in this deck for obvious reasons, but it’s not necessary to run four. With the combination of manual energy attachment and Exp Share, Max Elixir now provides the extra acceleration you’ll need for turns where you miss energy or Exp Share was played around.
Exp Share – The bane of your opponents’ existence. Exp Share lets you move one basic energy from your active Pokémon to the Pokémon this card is attached to when your active Pokémon is knocked out. This means that even if your opponent has the means to take the KO on your Xerneas, you’ll still preserve the energy attached to it and will keep the threat of a DCE for a revenge KO a reality. Being able to manage energy in this manner makes it difficult for you opponent to disrupt your setup. So why only run two? Exp Share is strong once you have your initial setup, but it doesn’t do much to help you get to your initial setup. Max Elixir serves this purpose better and Exp Share serves the purpose of solidifying the setup mid game.
Super Rod – I know, I’m already running Karen, but I’m an angry person that doesn’t like Parallel City. There will be times where you need to play a different supporter for the turn and Super Rod will allow you to put necessary Pokémon and Energy back into the deck without taking up your supporter for the turn. Also, I want to make the most of the single Darkness Energy I’m running without having to run a Smeargle. Super Rod is just another safety net for Pokémon and Energy management and is meant to ensure you can execute your strategy even when it becomes disrupted.
Special Charge – Special Charge is yet another safety net in this deck, except this time it’s for your energy. This card ensures that you’ll have enough DCE in your deck despite poor starts forcing you discard them via Ultra Ball or Professor Sycamore. With DCE being your main way to attack, the inclusion of this card is relatively self explanatory.
Switch – As I mentioned with Float Stone, retreat is very important in a deck that has a bunch of Pokémon not meant for attacking. The reason I run a single copy of switch over a third Float Stone is simple: I wan’t an out to Froakie’s Bubble and Yveltal BKT’s Fright Night. Additionally, Switch allows me to retreat an active Xerneas that may have an Exp Share on it but not enough Energy. Even though it’s just a single card, it’s presence can make all the difference when you’re in a tough position against these decks.
Sky Field – The reason this deck has such a high damage output. Sky Field combined with the new Dual Type Pokémon lets this deck become extremely explosive. Sky Fields lets you explode with the heavy bench churned out by a Scoundrel Rig and hit the magic number of 220 consistently.
“Alright Chris, so what about Fighting Fury Belt or Fairy Garden?”
Don’t get me wrong, Fighting Fury Belt is an amazing card, however, it is relatively lackluster in this deck compared to the advantages that Exp Share gives you. The ten damage that this card adds doesn’t aid in numbers you need to hit. Also, the 40 extra health isn’t as amazing as having insurance that you will an attacker next turn when your opponent is able to do 160 damage. As for Fairy Garden, you could probably cut a Sky Field or a Max Elixir if you’re feeling frisky in order to have more retreat utility and another counter stadium to Parallel City. However, in testing, this proved underwhelming since running Super Rod, Karen, three Float Stones, and four Sky Fields provided more than enough of a counter to Parallel City.
The Quarter Mile
On your marks…get set…GO! The stage is set and we’re all revved up to take our well-oiled machine to the streets. Let’s take a look at how we’ll fare against the field:
M Rayquaza – This could arguably be a 70/30 match up, but I like to give credit where credit is due with a deck like this. M Rayquaza is great at creating an explosive setup consistently, but having all EX attackers is where Rainbow Road will have the advantage in winning the prize trade. In addition, both decks make use of Sky Field, so you can be a little more reckless with your explosive Hoopa-EX plays knowing that Parallel City probably won’t be a threat. Also, the presence of Exp Share puts a lot of pressure on M Rayquaza to keep up with the KOs. Jirachi plays a big part in this matchup too. When you fall behind in the energy attachment war, Jirachi can save the day and slow down the stream of attacks from M Rayquaza. When utilizing Jirachi, be mindful that Magearna-EX will negate the Stardust effect. Basically, always be mindful of the gamestate. Overall, this matchup is essentially a haymaker throw down, and I suggest you keep your foot on the gas from the start.
M Mewtwo – This matchup can be a little tricky, but Rainbow Road has the non EX attacker advantage here that makes me believe its 60/40 in your favor. The trickiness comes with playing around both Parallel City and Garbodor. Luckily, M Mewtwo has to run a split stadium count between Shrine of Memories and Parallel city so you shouldn’t have to counter Parallel City too often. You do, however, need to be mindful of when you explode and how you manage your Sky Fields. As explained earlier, Garbodor can dampen the explosiveness of our Hoopa-EX engine, but I think don’t think it’s that devastating against this deck in particular because M Mewtwo will have a single explosive turn and try to utilize Shaymin-EX and Hoopa-EX early in order to establish a Garbodor that doesn’t affect them. Using this strategy means they have effectively overextended and no longer have Shaymin-EX left in the deck should you disrupt their Garbodor setup. Another Strategy you could use against them is to force their Float Stone Usage on Hoopa-EX or Shaymin-EX with a Lysandre play during a turn that you’re trying to set up multiple attackers. By doing so, a Lysandre play on a Garbodor or Trubbish with a Float Stone attached means they’ve used up all their Float Stones and won’t be able to establish another Garbodor. While playing against this deck, be mindful that two hit KOs can be a liability if they can utilize Damage Change. Do what you can to score the OHKO. Be sure to be explosive when you can and mitigate Garbodor and Parallel City by not being careless and over benching when you don’t have to.
M Gardevoir – Just like the M Rayquaza matchup, this deck can arguably be 70/30 in your favor, but this deck flies just like M Rayquaza can and will be able to consistently put up a formidable setup so I feel it is definitely a 60/40 matchup. However, just like the past two matchups, Rainbow Road has the non EX attacker advantage and will win out in the Prize trade. M Gardevoir is relatively linear and doesn’t have the tools to deal with the energy spread that we can produce here. Although this deck will more than likely run Sky Field, there is definitely room to fit a Parallel City or two. Still, this is yet another haymaker throw down that requires you to gun it from the beginning.
Volcanion – This matchup is a toss-up. The reason I feel that it is a 50/50 matchup is because Volcanion combined with Steam Up can take out your army of Xerneas while keeping up with the Prize trade evenly. This deck is the reason I want to run Hex Maniac, but I ultimately decided that well timed Lysandres and early KO’s on Volcanion can disrupt their energy acceleration. There will be times where your opponent will attach a Fighting Fury Belt to a benched Volcanion-EX giving you a chance to Lysandre it to try and stall. By getting an early KO on the Volcanion, you have a chance to disrupt the energy acceleration strategy. However, the Volcanion deck is so consistent that they can just produce another Volcanion to accelerate energy. In this case, I like to let my opponent accelerate to their hearts desire and test their resource management. If you let them spread their energy on the board, they can be stuck in a situation where they can no longer Steam Up and take easy KOs with Volcanion. By forcing them to you use Volcanion-EX to take KOs, you can gain the advantage in the prize trade. It’s important to note that you should be careful about benching your own Volcanion-EX in this matchup since Volcanion-EX is weak to water and can be an easy KO for your opponent. Overall, just time your Lysandres well and test the energy management skills of your opponent.
Darkrai-EX, Giratina-EX, Garbodor – Here we have another 50/50 matchup caused by the presence of Garbodor and Parallel City. Another popular trend that this deck has taken is the including of Crushing Hammer/ Energy Disruption. If your opponent can hit multiple hammers, you’re in for a bad time, but this can happen against any deck. Luckily we have Max Elixir to give us the ability to load up in a single turn. Even still, we have to be mindful of Giratina-EX’s Chaos Wheel. Despite having the typing advantage against it, we need to make sure Chaos Wheel doesn’t lock us out of attacking by disrupting our DCE Attachments. Max Elixir, an early Exp Share attachment, and an early DCE attachment can get us around this. Additionally we have Jirachi to take away the Double Dragons Energys (DDE) and break the lock. Overall, you have the typing advantage against this deck, just stay mindful of managing their Garbodor and Parallel City and you should be able to take the win.
Yveltal Garbodor – Yet another deck where we have the typing advantage but is still a 50/50 match up. Again, we see the presence of Garbodor and Parallel City. I know you don’t need me telling you to be mindful of your explosive plays yet again, so I’ll dive into why this deck can pose other problems. Fright Night can be the bane of your existence in this match up. A simple Lysandre of a Volcanion-EX can spread tons of damage to the Pokémon EX on your bench and have it stuck active. Luckily we can Lysandre our way out of this type of lock to be able to retreat. Also, if your opponent opted to make Garbodor early, this strategy becomes less effective for your opponent. Overall, outside of managing Garodor and Parallel City, you’ll want to manage your Lysandres appropriately to tip this matchup in your favor.
Vespiquen, Yanmega – This deck is definitely a 50/50 matchup. The combination of only needing a DCE to attack and the even prize trade makes this matchup difficult to win. Early game Yanmega can knockout a Xerneas with an Exp Share or Float Stone attached to it. Late game Vespiquen can take easy KO’s on your benched Pokémon-EX and any loaded Xerneas. Utilizing Jirachi effectively in this matchup can tip the advantage in your favor. Overall, you need to floor it and explode as soon as you can to ensure you can stream KOs turn after turn to keep up with the prize trade.
Greninja – Oh hey look, another 50/50 matchup. Here we have another matchup that can trade one for one in the prizes. There is no presence of Pokemon EX which means you will need to take six knock outs to take the victory. You will have to stream attackers as much as you can and this can prove difficult when this deck can render your Exp Share useless. Max Elixirs need to be hit in order to keep up with the constant stream of Greninjas that can be produced. Also, Bursting Balloon will prove to be extremely annoying in this match up. With only 120 hp, Xerneas can be KOd by a Giant Water Shuriken after attacking into a Burst Balloon. This means that Greninja can effectively take multiple prizes per turn and can win the prize trade battle. You’ll need to be decisive when attacking into a Burst Balloon and know for sure you can disrupt your opponent’s strategy. Luckily, Greninja BREAK is basically a Stage 3 Pokemon and evolution decks have their own inherent consistency problems. Overall, you’ll want to disrupt their setup early and control the amount of Greninja Breaks they can get on board.
M Scizor – At first glance, it would seem that M Scizor has the advantage in this match up do to its typing advantage. It also runs all the cards we hate to see (Garbodor, Parallel City, and Crushing Hammer). Additionally, M Scizor has the ability to discard the Staidum in play which means Sky Field management is extremely crucial in this matchup. Despite all these advantages, I still think this is a 50/50 matchup. If you can withstand the barrage of Crushing Hammers and hit your Max Elixirs and Exp Shares then this match up can word out in your favor due to the prize exchange. As always you need to be mindful of Garbodor and Parallel City, but you have potential to explode on turn one and take away from your opponent’s setup. This matchup can be a grind, but I have full confidence, that if played accordingly, you can level the playing field against M Scizor.
Rainbow Road – The mirror match. This is obviously a 50/50. The key to winning this matchup is Exp Share and Max Elixir. Missing energy attachment in this match can end up losing you the game. The first one to not be able to follow up with a KO will more than like lose. My advice, get lucky and draw your Lysandres to disrupt their setup.
Vileplume Toolbox – This is hands down the worst matchup for this desk. Then again, this is a horrible match up for a lot of decks, but its problems with consistency without Battle Compressor makes me not fear its presence in the meta. With that said, I still feel the need to address a bad match up for this deck. You’ll need to manage the special energy in their deck with Jirachi and hope to not miss energy attachment. Alternatively you can hope to you Lysandre stall them once you’ve controlled enough of their energy and baited them to use their resources early. Overall, this is a 30/70 matchup, but if you can shift gears and play patiently in combination with getting a bit lucky, you can steal a game or two away from this deck.
Crossing the Finish Line
With decent matchups against the meta across the board, Rainbow Road can be a strong contender for a big tournament. You can consistently produce KO numbers and stream attackers turn after turn. You have the ability to rebuild when your strategy is disrupted and the necessary tech to answer tricky situations. Even though Parallel City and Garbodor have the potential to have a strong presence in a tournament, playing efficiently can avoid the detours these cards will put in your path.
“So Chris, will you run this deck at the Orlando Regional?”
You know it!