Jimmy Ballards guide to a Good Rogue deck...

Discussion in 'Feature Articles' started by BANGINBOX, Apr 8, 2008.

8 league13 468 60

    BANGINBOX New Member

    Hello to all….

    As you all may by now know, I will not be attending a Regional this year. My wife and I planned a vacation earlier in the year prior to the date and time announcement for Regionals. I am really gonna miss playing in this high level and skill showcasing event. I really wish they all weren’t on the same day, but that’s another topic….

    I am writing this topic today in response to some of the “Shinanigans” that went on here yesterday. Some of you may have seen several 4 corners lists posted by random individuals. Someone also went as far as creating a bogus screen name to try and exploit my decklist. This was an extremely pathetic attempt at exposing another rogue deck PRIOR to it being played at a major event. Sad day for Pokemon indeed…. I will neither confirm nor deny that the actual list made it onto the boards. It very well may still be on here.

    I became inspired last night to try and give all of you some insight on how I prepare myself and my decks to combat the metagame. It is important that this information gets out, as I feel the creativity level has dropped considerably since the domination of GG and Magmortar.

    First let me state this…. It is a GREAT thing for any TCG to have an established metagame. Mortar and Gardy are actually good for this game. The problem that I currently have with the game is that there are such limited options to combat these 2 decks, that it has actually made the game stale.

    Armed with this information I refused to give up on this game that I love so much. Many of you know that I don’t have the PLAY TO WIN mentality. I do however have the BREAK THE METAGAME mentality. It is never about my personal achievements. I find greater enjoyment in producing decks that are little known, that become archetypes for the rogue player. Many of you know me from this.

    So on to the how to do it portion….

    Step 1) Know your metagame. You CANT build a deck that can take out every deck in the format. It is absolutely impossible. You can however build things that can counter your local or regional area. Understanding what is being played in your area, is probably the single biggest part of building a good rogue deck.

    Step 2) Understand the capabilities and limitations of the decks currently being played. If you don’t understand the limitations of your opponent’s deck, how do you plan on exploiting those limitations (weaknesses). Example….I know that after all GG’s prizes are turned over they can max at 60, without the use of bring down. Knowing this information will aid you in building the perfect counter.

    Step 3) Identify the weakness of the top decks being played. Usually this will be the actual weakness of said cards. Example… Magmortar being weak to water, etc… This will allow you to focus on certain flavors of pokemon to eliminate you wasting your time with things that will not do well against the metagame. I did this with Holon WP vs GG with my Answer deck. Not always is the counter going to be easy to find, but rest assured they are out there.

    Step 4) Build and test…..Without this step you cant actually see what the problems are with your deck. Apprentice and Redshark are great for casual games, but I don’t feel that they give you an ACURRATE test of a decks capabilities. There is just no substitute for actual live play testing. It grows the game as well as allowing you to immediately recognizing and shortfalls in the deck.

    Step 5) Don’t give up. If you can take the top decks to 1 prize and you got a bad draw or poor start, you can consider that game an actual win. Identify why you had a poor start or cards that didn’t help you during the match and alter it to flow better. People underestimate the difference 1 card can make in your deck. One ATM rock won me several games with eevee even though 60% of my attackers were Ex’s. Unorthodox Yes, Bad play? NO! You also need to know when it just isnt working. Some ideas just need to be scrapped right away. Like my attempt at a poison deck. YUK!!!

    Step 6) Be confident in what you have in front of you. If you over think things your deck will slip into a bad place. I actually, OVER TECHED Destiny last year at worlds. I paid a heavy price for that. Know that you did all the proper play testing and be confident that what you have is what’s going to win. Attitude could really make the difference.

    Step 7) KEEP IT SECRET!!! This is really important in playing a rogue deck. If you let your secret out, people will find the counter to it. Most rogue decks win events on the surprise factor. If you happen to win another event with it after the surprise factor has worn off, you have actually made yourself a new rogue archetype. Now play it all the time. It will become part of you as the season goes on. The more you play your deck, the more you become comfortable with it. Understanding the matchups combined with a clear understanding of your deck, will usually net you a win.

    I don’t think people appreciate what it takes to build and run a rogue deck. It takes some real stones. Knowing that you are going war with the giants of the game with a sling shot and some pebbles is really frightening, but it is what drives my passion for the game. I do not keep lists off the Gym to cheat you people out of my ideas. I do it to try and maintain the surprise factor.

    I have done my best to keep the Arithmetic deck off the boards. I did this to try and keep the surprise factor for the people who have the stones to follow in my footsteps. It was a terrible disgrace to the game and to the individual who tried to ruin it for all the people who put their faith in me to help them. It was a new low even for that particular individual. While I am not going to be playing, my deck will be out there. I wish them all the best of luck.

    I will continue my mission to try and keep this game fresh and enjoyable for all. The countless PM’s become annoying, yet seem to inspire me to continue the drive….

    Thank you for reading and I hope some day people will actually respect the effort it takes to try and break the metagame.

    Last edited: Apr 8, 2008
  2. pichu bros. rox

    pichu bros. rox New Member

    Great Job for posting this! Lots of Props. I'm sure this will help alot Jimmy! :thumb:
  3. pikachu*

    pikachu* New Member

    Good Post Jimmy. Having GG and Maggy as our top decks are a good thing and a bad thing. THe good thing means that people haven't had to use heaps if cash to get in on the big new deck, and It means that rogue decks can have some sort of counters they need to beat the metagame. The bad thing about it... is that you have to see the same decks day in and day out.


    ~ Pika*
  4. BloodDraek

    BloodDraek New Member

    this helps, hopefully the next time an sd that is truly remarkable isn't spoiled by someone like Gino.

    However I don't know if anyone has the guts to play a rogue deck at regionals.

    and I can't wait to find out what this "Arithmetic" deck is.
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2008
  5. phoenixback4fire

    phoenixback4fire New Member

    All your help and everything youv said to me has inspired me to play my deck and I do believe that it will win or at the least come in top4 because it really does work (for me) and im confident enough now to play it and take it seriously.

    thanks jimmy

    from your friendly neighborhood

    Back to back posts merged. The following information has been added:

    I do .
    I Am
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2008
  6. Blaziken 1111

    Blaziken 1111 Active Member

    Thank you for writing this article. I tried to build rogue decks but I did not know the metagame as well as I thought and by the time I found what it was it was too late and everything I planned for wouldn't of worked and at that point I just gave in and played GG. I am planning to try again durring the BRs and if I do well in them then I will try to keep building them but this season is just really a test for me but next season I am going to play to win so I am going to build decks to win so whether I will use the future archetypes or rogue decks that I build I'm not sure.
    This article may be the motovation to start building rogue decks again.

  7. mca3

    mca3 New Member

    GREAT Article, Jimbo!!! The Surprise Factor does seem VERY important, SO that is why I might run something COMPLETELY different this Saturday!!! You have helped keep me motivated to stick with MY OWN ideas, which is what we ALL should do for the BEST of the GAME!!!

    Thanks for your passion for the Game,
  8. secretsof2113

    secretsof2113 Moderator Trader Feedback Mod

    If the 4 corners deck that was posted last night was truly the real 4 corners....that was far from rogue. That was a modified Magmortar deck.....seeing that most of them already run claydol with magmortar.
  9. Alazor

    Alazor Active Member

    The "Arithmetic" deck...

    Wait, wasn't there an Arithmetic deck already? Long time ago written by Ness.
    We'll see in the next set. It's always good to build a rogue deck out of the newer cards.
    If you thought 4 corners was good, well Arithmetic is probably really old school, with a twist probably.

    BANGINBOX New Member

    So let me get this straight... If I use a gardevoir, magmortar, feraligatr, banette or any of the other 20+ card that are being played, that makes it a NON-Rogue deck? You seem to really be limiting my card pool.

    So what exactly is your idea of rogue, cause obviously I dont know what I am talking about.

  11. Lawman

    Lawman Active Member

    Nice post Jimmy. For those that have been in the game, either playing or running/judging them, it is always appreciated when a rogue deck pops up and does well. I have heard judges tell players "nice idea" during deck checks. We may not play much anymore, but we still understand the make up of a good deck.

  12. Pokekid

    Pokekid New Member

    you are the red face paint king
  13. rerisenphoenix

    rerisenphoenix New Member

    Jimmy Ballard, who's tha...I mean, great article Jimmy!
  14. mca3

    mca3 New Member

    You can STILL run cards like Gallade, Gardy, Mag, etc. with OTHER combos!!! Its just ANOTHER way of Changing the Game!!!
  15. chriscobi634

    chriscobi634 New Member

    7. Keep it secret

    That's what I was trying to do. But, someone had to post the key component to our Regionals deck. Know anything about that, Jimmy?
  16. Papi/Manny

    Papi/Manny New Member

    Nice write up man. Of course, another factor to being successful with a rogue deck, as with any other deck, is you need to have some sort of good luck on your side. I don't think playtesting is really a big deal if you've played with the cards in similar decks before (e.g. the trainers) and know how well the function, as long as you know what the cards do and what they're purpose is in the matchups. *keeps muttering on* But yeah, I think you've covered the majority of the points.
  17. Pidgeotto Trainer

    Pidgeotto Trainer New Member

    I like that one. Sometimes you need that kind of logic to shore up certain matchups. Often that kind of logic is the reason some great combo or deck has been overlooked.
  18. Regis_Neo

    Regis_Neo Moderator

    Nice post, I've always enjoyed reading about your red face paint decks. I just wish I could build and play one as well, lol.
  19. secretsof2113

    secretsof2113 Moderator Trader Feedback Mod

    You said it yourself, magmortar and gardy/gallade are the two most used decks in the format right now. Using any variant where maggy is a main attacker automatically discounts the "red face paint" aspect of the deck.


    Our? You dont know about Corners.

    And Secrets, just because a deck has ONE component of an archetype, does not making it near ANYTHING of the same thing. If I ran Magmortar, Gyarados, Jinx, and Palkia, is that not a red face paint because it has *gasp* magmortar in it?! Your logic is flawed, is all I can say.


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