States Report - Manchester (UK) - 12/3/11 - Machamp / Donphan

Discussion in 'State/Province/Territory Championships' started by dancingaway, Mar 16, 2011.

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  1. dancingaway

    dancingaway New Member

    After 3 cities in which I took 3rd place twice (at one point being as high as 12th in the UK rankings) I was feeling pretty good about my Machamp / Donphan deck so I decided to give it another run out for the Manchester states. I had been developing a Magnezone / Machamp deck but the testing I had done had shown it to be too inconsistent and I didn’t believe it would give me as good a chance as my faithful old deck. I knew I could, on the day, beat anything except Gyarados and my friend’s Yanmega / Jumpluff deck (which took 4th at this tournament!) so I added a couple Judge and a Mesprit for some emergency disruption in case I faced a really bad match-up.

    As we were sitting down it was announced that we would be playing single round, 30minute games (different to the best of 3 format I played at all 5 Battle Roads and 3 Cities) and I thought that this would suit me. Turned out I was wrong!

    Round 1: Shaun (SP Toolbox)

    Shaun is a guy I’d never met before. He was very quiet and seemed new to the game. As we started we both mulliganed and it became clear he was playing SP so I thought this could be a nice opening match. As it turned out he was playing a mix of SP including Luxray, Garchomp, Dialga and Blaziken.

    I start with a Phanpy, Machop and Collector in my opening hand and I’m feeling pretty happy. Then I win the toss and I’m feeling even better. He opens with a Smeargle and “Portrait’s” my collector. The he drops a Call Energy on Smeargle and finished his T1 with a full bench. As he has several SP Pokémon out I’m wary of the Power Spray so I drop a Mesprit and “Psychic Bind” to bait the Power Spray. As he doesn’t spray I think I’m ok so I drop an Uxie…. And he sprays it. On his turn he spends a long time reading what Psychic Bind does so I think the bait failed as he didn’t know what I was doing. Never mind. On his turn he continues to get set up and uses “Earthquake” on his Garchomp C. On my turn I play Seeker, pick up Uxie and drop it again, only to see it sprayed a second time. On his next turn he Levels up his Garchomp and “Dragon Rushes” my Uxie (especially annoying as I had a second Seeker in hand to try for 3rd time lucky Uxie).
    At this point I was having terrible, terrible draws. I didn’t draw into any of: Luxury Ball, Bebes, Communication, Professor Oak’s New Theory (PONT) or Judge. This totals 10 cards! His Cyrus chain started on his second turn so I know he has a power spray so Uxie is a no-no.
    Eventually, 5-0 down, I draw a Rare Candy and evolve a Machop into a Machamp and kill his Luxray with “Take out”. Next turn I kill his Garchomp. Then I kill his Blaziken. I have no idea how he let me kill all 3 in a row rather than sending up a sacrificial Crobat or Uxie while he worked on something to take me down (bearing in mind he needed only one more prize). At no point did he try and set up an Uxie Lv.X as a counter. Bearing in mind that he let me kill all his main attackers and didn’t send up a counter I was left ruing how I was unable to get going sooner. After my 3 prizes he used an SP radar for a Promocroak and finally got the kill.

    That game I went down due to his great luck at being able to use Collector and Call on T1 as well as starting with 2 Power Sprays in hand. With that and terrible draws it just wasn’t happening. I was a bit annoyed at this point as, for the reasons I stated, I think this was a very winnable match but maybe my deck just wasn’t fast enough or consistent enough.

    0-1

    Round 2: ??? (Luxchomp)

    This is again another guy i had never seen before. He tells me he has recently gotten back into the game and it turns out that he is playing a Luxchomp deck made by his friend. I thought that an inexperienced Luxchomp player could be exactly what i needed to turn my day around.

    Thinking my bad luck for the day was over I draw my opening hand to find Uxie and Judge with no other basic Pokémon or usable supporters. I get to go second so I drop a Mesprit I top-decked and then Judg. I was ecstatic to find a Luxury Ball in my 4 cards and eagerly dropped it looking for my second Uxie..... Which was prized? This severely hampered my set-up and it started going very like the previous game. He did drop an Uxie, forgetting about my “Psychic Bind” (and then seemed offended when I wouldn’t let him pick Uxie back up!) but soon he started getting set-up in the usual Luxchomp way however, being inexperienced, he was not setting up a Machamp counter.
    One excellent move i enjoyed in this game is when I had a Phanpy on the bench that got “Bright Looked” and hit for 60 by his Luxray. I wanted this Phanpy back so I put a Rescue Energy on it. I was about to pass when i realised that i could use the Rescue Energy to flail for 60. Of course with Luxray’s x2 weakness to fighting this would be 120! So I killed his Luxray X with my Phanpy.
    As an example of my poor draws, at one point I count my play area, hand and discard pile to see how many cards I had seen. Turns out I had seen 20 cards (1/3 of my deck) without hitting 1 of the 8 Fighting Energy I run.
    Just like the last game, I got my Machamp but it was too late. I had taken one prize and him 4. I immediately decided that i would just use the Machamp and started looking for a Seeker to get rid of the Phanpy that was the lone figure on my bench. At this point my opponent started playing very slowly. One of his turns, after a 15min warning, took (without exaggeration) more than 5mins, most of which was thinking time. I questioned him on this and he explained that he needed time to think so he didn’t misplay. I reminded him that he was ahead by 2 prizes in a single game format and would win if time expired. I should have called a judge but i didn’t and i genuinely believe this cost me the game. He Bright Looked my Phanpy and all I needed was a DCE to retreat him and keep taking prizes as he had no Machamp counter. Time ran out after 2 more turns for me and i had no chance. So i was down 4-2 and lost when time expired.

    I could bemoan my bad luck (of which there was much) or the fact that my opponent wasted a lot of time that could have won me the game but, at the end of the day, i could have called a judge regarding time and this is the second game in a row where luck of the draw failed me. By this point I’m thinking that maybe my deck is not consistent as it should be. I had two very winnable SP games and lost them both.

    0-2

    Round 3: Will (Lostgar)

    Will was another guy I’d never met but he was a fantastic guy and a pleasure to play. We were chatting and joking through the game and it was very fun. Plus, with top cut out of the way, it was nice to just relax and have fun with a new person. Will explained that he didn’t really want to play Lostgar but he couldn’t find any SF Gengars so he made the best he could. He had some “Poltergeist” Mismagius in here as well as Mew and Gengar Prime.

    After the horrendous luck in the last 2 games, i was finally rewarded. I went second, starting with a Phanpy, dropped a Broken Time-Space, evolved to Donphan, attached a Fighting Energy and an Expert Belt and used “Earthquake” for the T1 knockout on his Uxie. Next turn i attached a second energy and knocked out a Mew. On my third turn i attached a third energy and with the Belt was hitting for 110. I killed his Unown Q then the following turn he scooped after I killed his Gastly.

    We played another game for fun after that and we both got ok draws and it was a lot more interesting as a game. I am also happy to report that Will got enough SF Gengar to make his Vilegar deck by the end of the day.

    1-2

    Round 4: ???? (Charizard)

    This was a guy I’d seen at a couple tournaments. He seemed like a nice guy but seemed very annoyed by his luck so far in the tournament and felt that his deck had let him down. I understood where he was coming from, though i realise that any more than occasionally means that your deck probably isn’t good enough.

    The only thing at all that went wrong in this game was I lost the coin flip. After that it was all good. I started with Machop, Machamp and Rare Candy in hand. T1 I top-decked a Fighting Energy, attached to Machop and dropped a Mesprit to ensure no Uxie drops would happen on his first turn. T2 I used Rare Candy to get a Machamp, attached a Double Colourless Energy (DCE) and used “Take out” to get rid of his Uxie that he started with. Although I Judged him before doing so. On his turn he was unable to do much except bench a Charmander and so on my next turn I attached a Fighting Energy and then Took Out a Vulpix (that he had been unable to evolve due to my Judge). On his third turn he finally managed to evolve a Charmander into a Charmealeon, negating “Take-Out” but I was able to attach a Belt and “Rage” for 80. Next turn I did this to a Quilava and he scooped.

    This made me very happy as Charizard is often a bad match-up for a Fighting deck, what with having resistance and all, not to mention better recovery and a good draw engine. It also gave me a lot of confidence in my deck again as in 2 games I had needed only 9 turns and the only one of those turns I didn’t take a prize was when I started. It did make me wonder why that couldn’t have happened in the first game though.

    2-2

    Round 5: Paul (Yanmega / Vileplume / Celebi)

    Paul is another guy I had never met before. He said he was local and was playing the first deck he’d ever made himself. It was a deck that caused me a few problems with its trainer lock and main attacker having a fighting resistance. This was another really nice, pleasant game where we chatted and just enjoyed ourselves.

    This game should have seen a third good start in a row, I started with a Machop with Rare Candy and would be able to get a Machamp very quickly. Unfortunately I “won” the toss, forcing me to go first, and then he opened with a Spiritomb. By T3 I was able to get a SF Machamp but I was having a real energy crisis, so much so that before I could “Take Out” his Spiritomb he had already set up a Vileplume and 2 Yanmega Primes. At this point I knew I was in for a fairly difficult match.
    Eventually I got an energy and Took Out his Spiritomb but he was then able to 2HKO my Machamp with a Yanmega Prime. At this point I promoted an Uxie and levelled him up, knowing he could not be killed in 1 turn, so that I could have a draw engine. Seeing that the OHKO was not happening he started hitting my Bench with “Linear Attack”, managing to get kills on an Uxie and my Machamp SF, while I promoted a Donphan to force him to keep hitting the bench. By this time however I was well set up and I managed to get a Machamp Prime out and Fighting Tag in for the Donphan, hitting for 150 with “Champ Buster” as I has previously used “Earthquake” on my full bench. This took down his Yanmega Prime so he promoted a Celebi Prime and used “Time Circle” so that he could not take damage from evolved Pokémon. Seeing the problem I retreated the Machamp Prime (discarding a DCE and a Fighting Energy in the process!) and put up Uxie Lv.X to get the OHKO on his Celebi. It struck me at this point that I could have used a SF Machamp on my bench to get the kill with Take-Out but Uxie Lv.X did the job well.
    Next turn, with Uxie still alive, I attached a Fighting Energy and used “Fighting Tag” to get my Machamp Prime again active and hitting for very high damage and this is how I killed the next Yanmega Prime. I figured that from here I would just need announce “Champ Buster” a couple more times for the win but after killing a Spiritomb of his, he managed to recover a Yanmega Prime and then send his Vileplume active and confuse me (meaning I could well die without getting another kill with Machamp Prime). Now, at this point I did something I was very proud of: I retreated Machamp Prime (again paying the heavy retreat) and promoted Uxie Lv.X. I used Seeker to pick up Machamp Prime and then used the Broken Time-Space in play to evolve a Machop on my bench into a Machamp Prime (with a DCE I had left on him). I used Zen Blade to knock out the Vileplume (x2 weakness you see) and then next turn again used “Fighting Tag” to bring my new Machamp Prime active and hitting for enough to OHKO the Yanmega.

    I know that game report got quiet long and involved but such was the game. I enjoyed it immensely and it was a really fun challenge finding ways around his sneaky and sneakier moves. A thoroughly enjoyable game which brought me to a positive record for the day. Which was nice.

    3-2 (14th overall from 30 masters)

    So, overall it was a fun tournament. The first 2 games were horrible and really were poor draws, especially considering how well later games went, but such is the game. I enjoyed several of my games immensely against really good people and there were 2 games in which my deck worked to perfection and showed me how powerful it can be, when it wants to be. I also enjoyed having to get creative in the final game. As an extra bonus, I got a binder as a door prize, which, as I already had the pencil, beach ball, mat and hat, completed my Cities / States merchandise collection. Which was nice.

    There was only a top 4 and because of my bad resistance 3-2 would not have been enough even if there was a top 8 (though some 3-2s did make the top 8) but it was fun tournament and on Saturday I can be found at the Nottingham states. THAT should be a good one! It’s my home turf and I know a lot of people there, though it is always very, very difficult!

    Props
    - Taking 2 games in 9 turns
    - Winning what should have been an incredibly difficult final game
    - Getting a binder!
    - The Uxie Lv.X earning his keep again
    - Playing good people and enjoying the banter

    Slops
    - Losing two winnable games with terrible luck
    - Facing a player who won, essentially, because they played slow and wasted time
     

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