Hello everyone! My name is Johnny Rabus, and today we are going to talk about Mega Alakazam, my run at Virginia Regionals, its matchups, and how Guardians Rising affects the deck and its ability to be played.

First, I want to say that I had an absolute blast playing this deck. I had been testing for Virginia Regionals for a few months, but everything I had tried did really well one day and really poorly the next. Part of that was matchups, where there just seemed to be a ton of 50/50 matchups between the top decks which allowed variance to be a huge factor. Eventually, I had settled on Volcanion for the tournament, as if you ran hot, nothing could beat you anyway. About a week before the event, Russell sent me a list for Alakazam. (Russ originally got a list from long time Alakazam player, Gavin Neves, after making a bunch of changes he sent me his latest build) I thought he was being stupid, as usual, but I had tested Alakazam at the start of the season and was willing to try it again. I went on trying his list, tweaking it to my own a little bit, and had a ton of fun playing it. It was then that I decided to run with it, as I would rather have fun than be miserable all day, even if it meant I might just be throwing my money away.

Espeon GX/Wobbuffet/Alakazam

Pokemon (15)

  • 3 Eevee
  • 2 Espeon GX
  • 2 Wobbuffet
  • 3 Alakazam EX
  • 3 M Alakazam EX
  • 1 Hoopa EX
  • 1 Shaymin EX

Trainers (35)

  • 3 Professor Sycamore
  • 3 N
  • 2 Lysandre
  • 1 Lillie
  • 1 Hex Maniac
  • 1 Olympia
  • 3 Alakazam Spirit Link
  • 3 VS Seeker
  • 4 Ultra Ball
  • 2 Devolution Spray
  • 3 Trainers’ Mail
  • 3 Mega Turbo
  • 2 Float Stone
  • 1 Super Rod
  • 1 Skyfield
  • 2 Parallel City

Energy (10)

  • 7 Psychic Energy
  • 3 Double Colorless Energy

Espeon GX

One of my favorite cards recently, this card is capable of doing so much. Psybeam, for one Psychic, does 30 damage and confuses their active. Early or late game, this can be used as a stall tactic and could be useful in buying some time. Psychic, for one Psychic and two Colorless, does 60 damage plus 30 for each energy they have attached. A very useful attack that hits your opponent harder and harder, just for playing the game. Its GX attack, Divide GX, let’s you place ten damage counters on their board. This is an amazing attack that can either finish a game, KO a big threat that is being built, or it can be used to set up KOs in the future, making it an extremely versatile attack.

Alakazam ex and M Alakazam ex

Let’s start with the basic. Alakazam EX, for a Psychic and a Colorless, can use Suppression which puts 3 damage counters on every opposing Pokémon that has energy attached. If your opponent is spreading out their energy, this is definitely an option worth considering. Alakazam’s ability, Kinesis, is the real killer though. When you mega evolve, Kinesis puts 2 damage counters on the opponents active Pokemon and 3 damage counters on a benched Pokemon. Just by becoming a mega, you get to put even more damage on their board! That’s incredible! M Alakazam can follow up nicely to boot. For a Psychic and a Colorless, Zen Force does 10 damage plus 30 more for each damage counter on them, making for an attack that only gets stronger as the game goes on.

Wobbuffet

Wobbuffet was mainly included for its ability Bide Barricade which, when active, turns off all abilities of non-Psychic Pokémon. This is great against the bane of the format, Vileplume. While Wobbuffet is active, we can still play our critical Item cards, like Alakazam Spirit Link and Mega Turbo. Definitely worth the spot. In a tight spot, Wobbuffet can also attack. Similar to Zen Force, Psychic Assault also costs a Psychic and a Colorless. Also like Zen Force, it does more damage for each damage counter on them, but only 10 instead of the 30. This can be used as a non-ex attacker that only gives up one prize.

2 Devolution Spray

Used to reuse Alakazam’s ability, in order to do even more damage to your opponents board! Just remember you can’t use Devolution Spray and then evolve the same Alakazam in the same turn.

3 Sycamore and 1 Lillie

Obviously this will stick out. There are times where you don’t want to discard your hand, and draw supporters are hard to come by, Lillie was the best of the bunch.

3 VS Seeker

With Vileplume being big and space being tight, cuts had to be made. While I would like a 4th, cutting one seemed necessary.

2 Parallel City

This gave you a fighting chance against M Rayquaza, without it they just run right through you.

Matchups

Decidueye/Vileplume

This match is super easy. You have a bunch of high HP Pokémon that can easily KO their high HP Pokémon. I faced this deck 3 times and won each one 2-0. There is almost nothing you can do to throw the match. You have Wobbuffet to get some items down if need be.

Volcanion

This match is a very close one, as both decks are capable of taking extremely quick knockouts. This match comes a battle of speed, as it heavily favors whoever is able to get set up and start attacking first. One way you can swing the matchup for you is if you can use Hex Maniac at opportune times, preventing them from using Steam Up to take a knockout that turn, allowing you time to get back into the prize trade with them. This is a very close matchup that is probably a little in their favor, as they don’t have to evolve in order to get set up, and also feature a much higher amount of energy acceleration, between Max Elixir and baby Volcanion.

Turbo Dark

This is another extremely close matchup. Odds are they are going to explode out of the gate, and you have to match that speed in order to stand a chance. While using Divide GX early to set up your KO’s is still a good play, it may be in your best interest to try and get a KO or two with Divide GX, so their Exp. Share doesn’t activate, allowing you to clear some energy off of their board while keeping up in prize cards. This match, like Volcanion, always comes down to the wire and depends on who can hit what they need, when they need it.

Quad Lapras

 This matchup is very straightforward. You can try to confuse their Lapras with Espeon to slow them down. You will almost never use Divide GX here due to their heavy line of Rough Seas. You mostly just want to attack it with Alakazam though, as it provides excellent numbers when trying to knockout Lapras, both with and without a Fighting Fury Belt. When you mega evolve, you do 20 to it. Then, you hit it for 70 which puts their active Lapras at 90 damage. If they use Rough Seas, then they are still at 60, which allows you to KO it the following turn with Zen Blade, as it will hit for 190 damage under these circumstances.

Those were the decks I was heavily testing against going into Virginia, as they were the decks to beat going in. I felt comfortable enough in these critical matchups that I believed I could pilot Mega Alakazam to a respectable showing.

Virginia Regionals

I’m just going to go through the matchups and any points of interest from them, as it is hard to remember the exact details from every round.

R1 Lapras WW

R2 Lapras LWT

This match was much harder than expected, as she ran Max Elixir in her list, which allowed her to take KO’s quicker than I anticipated.

R3 Lapras W

I took a long game one, and there wasn’t enough time to finish game 2.

R4 Yveltal/Garb LWT

I lost game one after playing an N to two, which gave my opponent a Lysandre and a Double Colorless, allowing them to KO my benched Shaymin EX for the win. Game 2 I was able to run away with the game, but Game 3 never had time to start.

R5 Metal Ray W

He took 5 prizes almost at will before I was able to play N and Parallel City in the same turn. From there, the game started to swing in my favor. I took a couple KO’s while he continued to miss any sort of draw card or a counter stadium, and I was able to steal the game. Game 2 I started Wobbuffet, and with only 10 minutes or so to play, he chose to concede.

R6 Owlplume WW

This one was streamed by The Meta Deck. I will say, I’m amazed at the hate that popped up in the chat. That hate all changed when I started to win, but that shouldn’t have changed anything. To those reading, always try out ideas no matter how crazy people say they are.

R7 Owlplume WW

R8 Owlplume WW

R9 Volcanion L

He hit a Max Elixir and three Steam Ups to swing the game hard in his favor. I couldn’t recover, and there was very little time for game 2 to finish.

I ended day one at 6-1-2 and was knew I was going to be very close to the bubble. To my relief though, I had made it at number 30. This gave me no room for error day 2 though.

R10 Mewtwo/Garbodor L

In the middle of the game I started to miss energy, which became the deciding factor as he began to KO everything in sight. Not enough time for game 2 so I took the loss.

R11 Volcanion LWT

Game 1 I missed energy and he was hitting Steam Ups, as well as ways to retreat whenever it looked like he’d miss an attack due to Volcanic Heat, which allowed him to take the win. I took game 2 swiftly, and we didn’t have time to even start game 3.

R12 Mewtwo/Wobbuffet LWL

Game 1 he hit Mega Turbo and Double Colorless at will to get easy KOs before I was able to set up. Game 2 I was able to keep up in the prize trade, eventually overwhelming his attackers and sweeping from there. Game 3 I was unable to find a Mega Alakazam and, as a result, was unable to keep up with the trades, which cost me the game and the series.

R13 Lapras LL

I was struggling for draw cards in the early going of both games, but due to my opponent’s inclusion of both Pokémon Center Lady and Max Potion, I have a hard time envisioning a world where I would be able to win that series.

R14 Yveltal WLW

The last round of Day 2, my opponent and I were just being silly and playing whatever, as the outcome didn’t matter with how bad of a day we both had.

Day two record 1-3-1

Final record 7-4-3

Obviously I wish I had a better Day Two, but they deck was extremely solid and performed very well. I am happy with my deck choice and with my finish, and would do it again if I had the chance.

Guardians Rising:

It is unknown if M Alakazam cannot survive in the new format. Field Blower makes it very hard to stick Spirit Links for more than a turn; the new Garbodor gets easy KOs against Alakazam due to its weakness; Sylveon GX is a much better version of Lapras and will be able to control the game pace even better than Lapras GX could; Water based decks get even faster with Aqua Patch, allowing them to out speed and overpower Alakazam before it can get set up. Here is the first list I have tested, time will tell if it can stand up to the new threats in the metagame.

Espeon GX/Wobbuffet/Alakazam

Pokemon (15)

  • 3 Eevee
  • 2 Espeon GX
  • 3 Alakazam EX
  • 3 M Alakazam EX
  • 1 Hoopa EX
  • 1 Shaymin EX
  • 1 Tapu Lele GX
  • 1 Sudowoodo

Trainers (34)

  • 3 Professor Sycamore
  • 3 N
  • 2 Lysandre
  • 1 Lillie
  • 1 Olympia
  • 3 Alakazam Spirit Link
  • 3 VS Seeker
  • 4 Ultra Ball
  • 2 Devolution Spray
  • 3 Trainers’ Mail
  • 3 Mega Turbo
  • 1 Float Stone
  • 1 Field Blower
  • 1 Super Rod
  • 3 Altar of the Moon

Energy (11)

  • 7 Psychic Energy
  • 4 Double Colorless Energy

I have been trying to make Alakazam work in the new format, and this is the build I have had the most success with so far. Tapu Lele is an amazing addition, bringing you consistency and another attacker in niche situations. Healing via its GX attack, Tapu Cure, could be used as well if any spread decks come about. Altar of the Moone is something I’ve been excited about to give anything in the deck that has an energy free retreat. Sudowoodo helps regulate the M Rayquaza matchup much better than Parallel City did.

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed reading about this deck as much as I enjoyed playing it. Sometimes just taking something that has decent matchups across the board is the way to go. Remember, never give up on your crazy ideas, because sometimes they are just enough to get you there.

-Johnny

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