Hello, once again Some1sPC readers! After a jam-packed amount of major tournaments in March, we finally get a soothing break to reflect and break down the results from this past month. Ultra Prism ended up being exactly how most people predicted and a bunch of hyped cards ended up being disappointing. The most interesting change to the format would be the release of Lucario GX as a promo. It saw a decent amount of play in Portland Regionals, with nine Lucario variants making Day 2. That's a very promising result for Lucario moving forward and I expect it to remain relevant in upcoming Standard tournaments. I ended up playing Golisopod Zoroark again and fell short of making Day 2 at 6-2-1. The Lucario Zoroark matchup is unfavorable and those were my only loses in Portland. I still believe Golisopod Zoroark can be a great deck choice for upcoming events, but it is no longer the monster of the format it was before. Lucario puts a healthy check on it and it should bounce around from Tier 1 to Tier 2. For my article today, I'm going to put Standard aside and focus on Expanded, as our next United States Regional will be in that format. Fellow Some1sPC writers have already extensively covered the majority of the Standard decks and all of the Lucario variants, so be sure to check them out! The two decks I'll be covering are Gyarados/Gallade and Glaceon, which are strong enough to keep up with the power of Zoroark and Garbodor.

State of Expanded

The current Metagame of Expanded is dominated by Zoroark and Garbodor. These two cards had an immediate impact upon release and haven't faded away since. It's difficult for most decks to keep up with Zoroark's draw power and damage output through Sky Field. Garbodor's Gabotoxin Ability shuts down an incredibly fast Expanded format with the dependency of Abilities, which leads to a more control style victory. I'm fairly confident that Expanded will not go away from Zoroark and Garbodor for the rest of the season, which makes them good options to get your hands on to improve your mastery of them. The only way to truly combat them is to run an even stronger combo, such as Gyarados/Gallade and Glaceon GX.

If you're interested in playing with or against Zoroark and Garbodor, I would start with Igor Costa's 1st place Garbodor list and Daniel Lynch's 2nd place Zoroark list. They're super refined lists that are nearly perfect, so it will be the best place to start in preparation for upcoming Expanded events. One of my best tips for Expanded would be to get in as many games as possible because executing and playing will determine a lot of the games. You need a good amount of reps with your deck and the understanding of how quickly the tempo of the game can change in a single turn. Most outcomes are decided after taking advantage of a big play in Expanded over matchups, as a majority of Expanded matchups feel 50/50, so it comes down to starts and how well you can execute.

Igor Costa Drampa Garbodor 1st Place

Pokemon (15)

  • 3 Trubbish PLS
  • 1 Trubbish NVI
  • 2 Garbodor GRI
  • 1 Garbodor BKP
  • 1 Garbodor LTR
  • 2 Drampa GX
  • 3 Tapu Lele GX
  • 1 Oricorio GRI
  • 1 Sudowoodo GRI

Trainers (36)

  • 3 Professor Sycamore
  • 3 N
  • 2 Guzma
  • 2 Acerola
  • 1 Brigette
  • 1 Teammates
  • 1 Colress
  • 4 VS Seeker
  • 4 Ultra Ball
  • 4 Float Stone
  • 3 Choice Band
  • 1 Muscle Band
  • 1 Dowsing Machine
  • 1 Rescue Stretcher
  • 1 Super Rod
  • 1 Field Blower
  • 3 Parallel City

Energy (9)

  • 4 Double Colorless Energy
  • 4 Psychic Energy
  • 1 Rainbow Energy

 

Igor's Garbodor deck is very interesting with the excessive redundancy of locks on locks. You would think that capitalizing on a single bench lock with Parallel City would be enough for a matchup, but he decided to go with even more emphasis and pressure by using Sudowoodo. That's the biggest strength and the way this deck wins. It creates a ton of locks forcing you to have the solution to everything in a single turn. You can't address them one at a time and having only one piece to the puzzle won't win you the game. From my testing before Costa Mesa Regionals I didn't like how the deck felt, as the damage was very low and super underwhelming. You have to play this deck as control oriented as possible and lock your opponent out of the game. You won't be winning a race with your opponent and your focus should be to run them out of resources.

 

Daniel Lynch Zoroark 2nd Place

Pokemon (20)

  • 3 Zorua BW
  • 1 Zorua DEX
  • 4 Zoroark GX
  • 1 Zoroark BW
  • 2 Tapu Lele GX
  • 3 Shaymin EX
  • 4 Exeggcute PLF
  • 1 Exeggutor PLF
  • 1 Sudowoodo GRI

Trainers (41)

  • 3 Colress
  • 2 Hex Maniac
  • 1 Brigette
  • 1 Ghetsis
  • 1 Guzma
  • 4 VS Seeker
  • 4 Ultra Ball
  • 4 Puzzle of Time
  • 2 Battle Compressor
  • 2 Red Card
  • 2 Choice Band
  • 2 Float Stone
  • 1 Computer Search
  • 1 Pokemon Communication
  • 1 Level Ball
  • 1 Rescue Stretcher
  • 1 Field Blower
  • 3 Skyfield

Energy (4)

  • 4 Double Colorless Energy

 

Daniel's Zoroark list was another unique spin on things at Costa Mesa. Zoroark's built-in draw power lets you get the card advantage on your opponent and at the same time, you can get one hit knockouts with Sky Field. The other great advantage of the large hand size is it allows you to make crazy combo plays through Hex Maniac, Ghetsis and Red Card that will change the momentum of the game in an instant. The unique thing that Daniel added to his list was Exeggutor, which adds more emphasis on the tempo aspect of Expanded. The biggest problem has been the mirror running the same disruption cards and with Exeggutor you can dictate those terms by preventing them from using Supporters. You can stop them in their tracks and plan your big responsive play when you're ready.

Gyarados Gallade

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