The 2016 World Championship is over!
Winning the Pokémon TCG World Championship is all about making the right meta call; a deck that has good match-ups around the playing field. Many people believed a deck such as Night March would take home the gold, as the deck has great consistency, capable of dealing a high number of damage, as well as leading with non-EX attackers for a Double Colourless attack. Other players piloted disruption decks, like Trevenant BREAK, Vileplume and Water Toolbox, hoping to lock their opponents out of the game, as well as being a thorn in Night March’s side. However, much to everybody’s surprise, a very different deck was able to steal away the title.
M Audino-EX Takes the Gold
M Audino-EX waded its way through the masses and was able to claim victory using its Magical Symphony attack, which does 110 damage to the active, and if you played a Supporter card from your hand during this turn, 50 damage to an opponent’s Benched Pokémon. This attack was absolutely amazing for the Worlds metagame, as you could either perfectly knockout a Shaymin-EX for two prizes or two hit knockout the large majority of Pokémon-EX being played. The 50 damage to the bench is very important, though, as the metagame was filled with low HP Pokémon decks. You could Lysandre a Shaymin-EX, therefore using a Supporter, knock it out with Magical Symphony, and then a Pokémon like Joltik, Mew, Combee or Phantump would all immediately fall, netting you a third prize card. Repeat this again and M Audino-EX would be able to take the game in just two turns!
The adorable puff of a Pokémon also came packed with 220HP and weakness to Fighting, which made it hard for decks to knock it out in one hit. Night March would have to discard 11 Night March Pokémon into the discard pile to fell it in one attack, and while it was very likely that some Night Marchers might be prized, this would leave them with only a single attacker that could easily be knocked out. Vespiquen would have even more of a task as their number of discarded Pokémon would have to equal 20! Trevenant BREAK would have to use a total of 8 Silent Fears, which, due to what the winning deck played, would be incredibly hard to pull off.
The Winning Deck
The now World Champion, Shintaro Ito, was able to pair M Audino-EX with a number of great tech Pokémon due to its Colourless typing, as well as a few Trainer cards. The first of these was the new Magearna-EX from the Steam Siege expansion, which had the Mystic Heart ability that prevents all effects of attacks except damage to each of your Pokémon that has any Metal Energy attached to it. This was a great answer to the popular Trevenant BREAK deck, whose Silent Fear would not affect any Metal Energy loaded Pokémon, as it dropped damage counters instead of damage. Annoying effects of attacks could also be negated, such as Special Conditions and Energy Removal, like Froakie’s Bubble or Jirachi’s Stardust.
A single Cobalion and Absol were also included in the list. Cobalion is a non-EX attacker, able to force opponents into a seven prize game if they chose to knock it out. Its two attacks were great in different situations, with Quick Guard blocking damage from all of the Basic Pokémon in the field and Revenge Blast doing 30 damage plus 30 more for each prize your opponent has taken. Absol’s Cursed Eyes ability could move damage counters placed on the bench from M Audino-EX’s Magical Symphony, allowing Shintaro to be more efficient with the bench snipe damage.
Shintaro included two Parallel City cards in his list, allowing him to discard useless bench sitters like Shaymin-EX and Hoopa-EX used during set up. As this deck was all about the prize trade and taking more knockouts than his opponent, getting rid of Lysandre targets would force opponents to hit into the bulky 220HP M Audino-EX. On the flip side, Parallel City would cut 20 damage from Grass, Fire and Water decks such as Vespiquen, Yanmega, Volcanion, Water Toolbox and Greninja. A Startling Megaphone could get rid of annoying tools such as Float Stones and Spirit Links, and as well knocking off Fighting Fury Belts from Joltiks and Mew so they could be easily sniped. Mega Turbo allowed Shintaro to power up a M Audino-EX in a single turn if one of his others was able to be defeated, whilst Float Stone gave free retreat to support Pokémon such as Magearna-EX, Cobalion and Absol.
If you weren’t from Japan, then you most likely would not have used a single second to test or even think about playing M Audino-EX at the World Championship this year, but due to Shintaro’s amazing rogue deck, he was able to take advantage of the metagame and win it all with a Pokémon most people considered to be unplayable and therefore demoted to the binder as trade fodder.
After seeing the performance of this deck on the big stage, people are flocking to acquire playsets of this adorable Mega Evolution; however, Shintaro’s success came from his ability to identify the metagame and counter it so well with this rogue deck, making M Audino-EX such a great play for this year’s World Championship. Congratulations to the newest World Champion, Shintaro Ito!