Deck Spotlight: Virizion/Mewtwo

Whenever a new deck pops up, everyone is dying to know more about it. What cards are in it? What’s the strategy? Does anyone have the list? For example, Dylan Bryan’s Flareon deck had everyone buzzing when he played it at the World Championships. If one of those unusual decks happens to pop up over the course of the season, we’ll take a look at it in the Deck Spotlight.

It just so happens that one of those decks have surfaced! Let’s discuss one of the surprises in the first few weeks of Regionals, Virizion/Mewtwo.

Credit to Karl Kitchin for the picture.

Credit to Karl Kitchin for the picture.

Pokémon – 8 Trainers – 38 Energy – 14
4 Mewtwo EX 4 Professor Juniper 10 Grass Energy
3 Virizion EX 4 N 4 Double Colorless Energy
1 Bouffalant 4 Skyla
4 Bicycle
1 Computer Search
4 Pokémon Catcher
4 Hypnotoxic Laser
3 Ultra Ball
3 Switch
2 Virbank City Gym
1 Super Rod
1 Max Potion
1 Float Stone
1 Energy Search
1 Town Map

Simple and powerful. From what we know, credit for this deck goes to a few top players from Utah, Karl Kitchin and Brandon Jones. After the Swiss rounds at Arizona Regionals, this deck was on top as the first and second seeds. Unfortunately, neither player advanced past the Top 8, but the deck made its mark on the tournament. When the word got out about this new concept, everyone was intrigued. How did this deck do so well? What’s special about it?

To be perfectly honest, there is nothing special about this deck. As far as competitive decks go, this is as straightforward as you can get. Then why is it any good? Well, as the great Alex Brosseau once said, boring can be better. Since its release in 2012, Mewtwo EX was one of the most dominant cards in the history of the Pokémon TCG. As more sets came out, it got used less and less, particularly when Deoxys EX came out. The popularity of Black Kyurem EX put a dent in its playability as well. But for some reason, people seem to have forgotten something. X-Ball is really, really good.

No matter how many cards there are to counter it, Mewtwo EX is still one of the strongest Pokémon we’ve ever seen. All it needs is a suitable partner to succeed. In the past, we’ve seen Darkrai, Eelektrik, etc. pair up with the genetic freak. Now Virizion EX is playing that role.

The new sheriff in town.

The new sheriff in town.

In general, people thought the best partner for Virizion EX was Genesect EX. Both use Grass Energy, and Genesect needs something to help power it up. But why not Mewtwo instead? Arguably Mewtwo will do more damage than Genesect (outside of G Booster usage), and it has the ability to attack quickly with X-Ball for just a DCE. Plus, your deck won’t be weak to Fire completely. In fact, Mewtwo normally covers itself because most Psychic Pokémon are weak to Psychic themselves. When you think about it, it actually might make more sense than Genesect! Of course, Virizion’s Verdant Wind gives you immunity to Hypnotoxic Laser as well, making it more difficult for your opponent to KO Mewtwo.

Okay, so what’s the strategy of the deck? To put it simply, build up a giant Mewtwo that can KO everything. Use Virizion EX’s Emerald Slash to load a ton of Energy onto a Mewtwo, and X-Ball your way to victory. Of course, you may have to spread out your Energy intelligently depending on the matchup, but that’s the gist of it. If you feel like being aggressive with Mewtwo is a better option, go that route; just a DCE allows Mewtwo to start using X-Ball. Bouffalant is there as a one prize attacker for a change of pace, too. With Hypnotoxic Laser and Virbank City Gym, your already powerful attacks will be doing tons of damage very quickly.

The king is back.

The king is back.

The biggest strength of Virizion/Mewtwo is its consistency. Just look at the list! With 12 Supporters, 4 Bicycle, and Computer Search, you’ll rarely find an unplayable hand. Although it seems strange, Town Map can help as well by allowing you to pick important cards out of the prizes. You are going to execute your strategy nearly every game, and that is a very powerful thing in Pokémon. Plus, the deck is very good in tournament play because it’s so fast and simple. In 50 minutes + 3 turns system for Swiss rounds, you have very little room for error. Not only will this deck complete games quickly, but it almost always will set up.

Is the deck perfect? Of course not. Plenty of decks and strategies give it trouble. For example, a Blastoise deck that can use Black Ballista repeatedly will give this deck fits. Since Black Kyurem EX can KO a Mewtwo in one hit and then leaves itself with very little Energy, X-Ball isn’t particularly useful. But that’s the risk you take with a deck like this. Although you have great consistency, you have hardly any options. The burden is on the opponent to beat the same strategy you’re going to execute every game. But historically, this is the most successful kind of deck in Pokémon. In general, consistency is king.

Will we continue to see Virizion/Mewtwo in the final week of Regional Championships? It has proven itself to be a strong deck, but was it nothing more than a one hit wonder? We’ll find out this weekend. Also, will it be able to survive as more sets come out and the rules change? Let me know your thoughts on this deck down in the comments. Thanks for reading!

15 responses to “Deck Spotlight: Virizion/Mewtwo”

  1. Stephen

    Great read, thanks for posting!

  2. Michael

    With the high usage of verdant wind, frozen city might be a nice tech for blastoise.

  3. C-Dub

    I think a higher bouffalant count and a lower mewtwo count would help significantly in this deck. I think 4 virizion is a must because it improves your chances of starting with it. At that point why not use a 3-3 Mewtwo/Bouffalant split? It would improve your blastoise/black kyurem matchup a lot. That has to be a horrible matchup if they can simply get setup and black ballista a few times since his deck ran all but one EX. Bouffalant is an extremely good matchup and prize trade with black kyurem. What i’ve found is that they’ll end up using keldeo to take out bouff, and then you counter with Mewtwo.

    This deck has great potential if it includes enough variety of techs. I think the list posted went overboard on the consistency at the cost of some useful cards that were not included. No tool scrappers? Why the lone float stone instead of a 4th switch? Is 4 skyla really necessary? Is 4 bicycle really necessary? I can understand town map if you were using genesect and g-booster to fish that thing out of there, but this deck doesn’t have any key item that you would need to get out of your prizes ASAP.

    I think this deck could benefit greatly from a tech Ghetsis and a tech Iris. How about a Mr. Mime? What about adding in some bangles for a couple of bouffalant in this deck? Bouff+bangle+laserbank = 180 EX KO…and that has to be scary for opponents to think about when playing against you. What about playing red genesect promo with bangles and enhanced hammers to compliment its first attack that only needs 2 colorless energy? The second attack isn’t bad either and this card has great synergy with virizion and mewtwo because of the energy requirements.

    Computer Search is also nice, but I can see something unique being a better addition to this deck such as dowsing machine, scramble switch or even life dew / rock guard. While many people might disagree with me about what I just said, I am certainly a proponent of playing decks that include an element of surprise.

    Overall, nice breakdown Kyle. I love reading about new decks that are shaking up the game right now. And you do a fantastic job at breaking them down with an open mind.

    1. Kyle Sucevich

      I agree that the deck can be taken in a lot of different directions, but the goal is to be super consistent at the cost of not having any “tricks.” Just being able to use Emerald Slash and X-Ball over and over will win a lot of games.

      1. C-Dub

        True. It does have a lot of free space to play with. I just think that being that straightforward will not be enough to get over the hump after making it to the top 8. It needs a little more creativity IMO….something to push it over the edge while keeping enough consistency to use those emerald slashes and X-Balls over and over.

      2. Evan

        with the pokemon line only having multiple energy costs, that means you can only attack first turn with a mewtwo and a DCE right?

  4. Chase Havoc

    Well I had the pleasure of playing against this deck this weekend in AZ and from what I gathered the deck is great, but I don’t believe it will continue to do good after the rule changes mainly because of the loss of catcher. Virizion/Mewtwo IMO was mainly used as a VirGen counter in AZ and I happened to be one of the unlucky few. The deck made it to top 8 but simply couldn’t cut it in the big leagues. It simply needs more options! If this deck hopes to make it with the new format changes its going to have to play a solid line of genesect just to take advantage of red signal.

  5. Ian Asplund

    I’m friends with the Utah players that built this deck, and it really is a great deck concept. There were a few other players that worked on it as well (my friend Alex Gardner comes to mind), and it really is Utah’s baby, so that’s pretty great!

  6. Dom

    I don’t see it being that hard to beat especially with plasma. If the emerald slash onto a Mewtwo all you have to do is catcher it up and KO it with Deoxys.

  7. Jason Fleshman

    nor cal regional week before az everyone played this deck did well and all got pack haha

  8. Skyler Knopp

    I liked the article, and I really liked the link you posted to Alex’s article.
    This deck is so boring. Like.. Hitmonchan/Scyther boring.

  9. Karl Kitchin

    My friend Alex Gardner does deserve just as much credit as I do! And as far as I know he had it built before I did. We both tested it extensively and both had our own little differences.

  10. Alexis Villanueva

    I’d run Plasma Badge and Colress Machine. It would add speed and attack power to MewTwo but also give the possibility of maybe getting a first set up Virizion ex

  11. duc thai

    Has anyone tried the new Genesect from Legendary Treasures? It’s like a grass type version of Blastoise, except that you draw cards from the deck with Virizion. It has status immunity with Virizion instead of Keldeo and a big attacker with Genesect instead of Keldeo. But of course, it needs something to replace Black Kyurem EX…. Genesect is a one prize attacker, but, it has a higher attack cost than Keldeo EX…

    1. C-Dub

      I have not used it personally, but I think it would be a better “one of” in a Virizion/Genesect deck than bouffalant or tropius. Slap a bangle on this genesect and with 4 grass energy attached its doing 160 damage. That is the only downside though. It takes 4 grass to power up completely, but its not unreasonable considering virizion’s energy acceleration. What I also like about this genesect is that is has another attack that does 20 damage for 1 grass energy. This can be a nice cheap attack to finish off any weakened pokemon that your opponent promotes. When I played with Virizion/Genesect, there were times when they would KO one of my pokemon and I would have no immediate response to finish them off when they were really weak. I had no quick response because my pokemon would take more than one turn to power up. The 50 from emerald slash and a megalo cannon from genesect would leave some of their 170 hp EXs with 20 dmg remaining, so you can see why this first attack for 20 might matter.