Hydro Hammer

Discussion in 'Deck Help and Strategy' started by Pajamas, May 26, 2008.

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  1. Pajamas

    Pajamas <a href="http://pokegym.net/forums/showpost.php?p=

    I've been working on this deck ever since the GE prerelease, and after three months of practice and subtle tweaking, I thought it was perfect...

    I played a Battle Road this weekend and went 1-4, with my sole victory coming when I was paired down against a junior. Ouch. I feel like I'm right on the cusp of having something powerful, because there were so many instances where I was just one flip or one turn away from taking control of the game... but everybody says that when they lose. What it really comes down to is that I lack the consistency to put these tools to work.

    Here is the list I played:

    Pokemon (18):
    3-2-2 Swampert GE (with Mudkip CG #57)
    2-2 Palkia Lv.X GE
    1-1 Mantine MT
    1-0-1 Dusknoir DP
    3 Lapras GE

    Trainers (24):
    4 Celio's Network
    1 Glacia's Stadium (likely to be replaced by Battle Frontier)
    1 Island Hermit
    1 Mr. Stone's Project
    1 Night Maintenance
    3 Professor Oak's Visit
    4 Rare Candy
    2 Roseanne's Research
    1 Scott
    2 Strength Charm
    2 Switch
    2 Windstorm

    Energy (18):
    12 :water:
    1 :fighting:
    1 Multi
    1 Double Rainbow
    3 Scramble

    The goal is to be able to control everything in the play area... once set up, you should be able to choose who your attacker is, who the defending Pokemon is, and where all your energy is, on every single turn. Very rarely should any of your energy end up in the discard pile. Palkia Lv.X's power and Mantine's body together typically act as a free Gust of Wind. Palkia Lv.X's power and Dusknoir's power frequently let you remove a threatening opponent from play. Palkia Lv.X's attack and Swampert's power allows you to keep your energy safe on the bench between turns (typically on a Mudkip, except when Bring Down is a concern).

    Palkia starts are typically the best. T1, do 10 and grab my stadium. T3, do 10 and examine my deck to figure out what's prized. T3, level up (if not sooner), do 60, and throw all of the energy to the bench in case of KO. The 80 damage I just dealt is enough to KO Kirlia, Magmortar, Banette, Prinplup, or any popular starter, which is the vast majority of what you're likely to see on T3 if you went first. (If my opponent managed to make it to something more threatening by my T3, then I can take a crack at Transback, and we both get to start over.) After that, either get a Swampert and either keep doing 60 with Palkia, or bring up Swampert for 80.

    The other good start is Lapras. Attach to Lapras on T1, Carry In, and get a Palkia or Mudkip on the bench to start charging on T2. One of the best uses of Carry In is to grab a Roseanne's Research, which can get Mantyke and Mantine at the same time. You can evolve to Mantine on the same turn and retreat Lapras for free, so you'll be able to recycle its energy with Swampert's power. (Incidentally, for this reason, Lapras is a much better starter than Pachirisu GE here.)

    Mudkip starts are not great, unless you draw into the DRE so you can actually attack with Swampert on T3. Mantyke is dead as a starter if you don't go first (but awesome if you do), and Duskull and Mantine starts really only serve to activate my Scrambles early. Fortunately, tech starts almost never seem to happen.

    Now, here's the problem I've encountered with this deck. Since it relies so heavily on Restructure, you can't have anything hanging around on your bench that doesn't either retreat for free or have a worthwhile attack. For this reason, Claydol and Porygon2 are not good plays here. I played 1-0-1 Nidoqueen d DF for a while, because the power was essentially giving me the same end result as Porygon2, but the attack was scary enough that nobody ever wanted to Restructure her out. Dusknoir also has a decent attack, though it is difficult to fulfill its cost. He gets away with it because the popularity of Moonlight Stadium often allows him to retreat for free. I've considered 1-0-1 Gardevoir SW as a tech, but I don't know what it would replace.

    I'm already playing a Supporter virtually every turn, and I really can't play something like Claydol. What other options do I have to improve the consistency of this deck, to get whatever card I'm pining for out just one turn sooner? Thank you in advance for your help.
  2. 2-2 Mantine so Palkia has NO retreat cost at all
    -1 Mr Stones project
    -1 Island hermit
  3. ugly psyducky

    ugly psyducky <a href="http://pokegym.net/forums/showpost.php?p=

    Check out Manaphy MD as a starter, its first attack isn't bad, but attaching 2 water to a future Swampert is amazing. You need to keep energy in your hand so MSP does work with Manaphy as a starter, also helps with the energy drain of retreating a Palkia. You could also run Energy Restore, but I hate how flippy that card is.
  4. revdjweb

    revdjweb New Member

    i have been trying to build a succesful swampert/palkia deck since last set. to me the real killer is the 3 retreat cost of palkia. yes you can get 2 mantines set up on the bench but that extra mantine takes up valuable space and resources. i am thinking of teching in one unown q so to make palkia's retreat a more manageable 2.
    i don't like lapras as a partner to swampert. you don't need tools, +10 strength charm is mostly irrevelent when you are already hitting for 80. like ugly psyducky i too immediately thought of swampert when i saw manaphy md, but the setup seems not worth the reward. rotom md seems like a slightly better partner than manaphy, rotom's attack is free and it is alot easier to arrange to have two basic energy in your discard pile than in your hand.
  5. ugly psyducky

    ugly psyducky <a href="http://pokegym.net/forums/showpost.php?p=

    One advantage of Manaphy becomes apparent when you have Dawns Stadium in Play. Charge and damage removal. Too bad Power Tree is rotated out. Rotom is unfortunately a terrible starter as its pretty hard to get alot of energy in the discard pile, maybe with Call Energy its not as terrible. I hate have something sit out there, do nothing and die.
  6. TIZNE

    TIZNE New Member

    Your deck idea is quite nice, and your decklist already looks good.
    I just have some questions. You are the one who have tested it.

    *Have considered Leftovers and Dawn stadium over Strenght Charm and Galcias'?
    However, I agree with revdjweb, and probaly no tool is needed, specially since the list is so tight.

    *You say you rarely any of your energy end up in the discard pile. Then why the Mr stone? With 18 energy, Night M, and 2 roseanne should be enough.

    *Then why are you running a single multi energy over a second DRE?

    *I know that you need the Candies for Dusknoir, and also if you want an early Swampert. I just noticed that 3-2-2 swampert with already 4 candies is not the best mix at least to my liking. If you want to keep 4 candies, how about a 3-2-3 or 2-1-2, or even 3-1-2 swampert line?
    But if mudkip starts are not that good, probably 2-1-2 may be better.

    Overall, I would go like:
    -1 Mr stone << +1 night maintenance
    -1 mudkip << +1 lapras (or whatever starter suits you)
    -1 multi << +1 DRE

    This way you got a better chance of a good start, you won't miss that mudkip because now you can shuffle him back if needed and the same goes if you need energy. And if you do start with mudkip you are a little more likely to draw a DRE.


    Giving your decklist a close look:
    *You say you're already playing a Supporter almost every turn, however you are not drawing that many cards because the effect of those supporters doesn't give you card advantage. You are only drawing cards with your 3 Professor Oak's Visit and an Island Hermit. Roseanne and celio are great for setting up. But scott and Mr stone? Lapras into a Scott is way too slow. And you already could get that stadium with palkia. And that stadium is not even vital to your stategy.

    *2 windstorm, good! specially because Cessetion Crystal shuts you down badly. But are they truly relevant? I mean, Cess Crystal is not that popular now, and you can get rid of stadiums with palkia and a stadium of your own. If Cess Crystal is heavy in your metagame definitely run windstorm, but if not, you are porbably not getting paired with that lonely guy that plays them. Even if you do get paired with him, I'd rather take that loss and free those two dead slots for cards that actually help my in my other 5 games. You should be worring about PLOX.

    *If you say palkia is actually a good starter, How about playing it 3-1, and adding a premiere ball or two?

    Assuming Cess Crystal is not popular in your meta, I suggest to playtest with something similar to this:
    -1 Palkia LV X <<< +1 Palkia (GE)
    -2 windstorm <<< +2 premiere ball
    -1 Scott <<< +1 Island hermit

    Now you have 7 out of 11 good starting pokes. And 2 Island hermit to look for a prized palkia Lv. X.


    I hope that these changes improve your starts and early game.
    I really like your idea, keep on the good work!!:thumb::thumb::thumb:
    I'd like to hear how you do with this.
    Last edited: May 27, 2008
  7. slayer_chaos

    slayer_chaos New Member

    You seem like you have too much energy. Especially you said your self that none of it should almost ever hit the discard pile. I'd say:

    -2 Water
    -1 Fight
    -1 Scramble
    -1 Mr Stones
    -1 Island hermit

    +1 Multi
    +1-1 Mantine
    +1 Swampert, you could even try having Swampert ex see if that helps you out at all.
    +1 Unown Q
    +1 prof oak visit
  8. Pajamas

    Pajamas <a href="http://pokegym.net/forums/showpost.php?p=

    There are a few suggestions here that I've tried, and a few that I hadn't considered. I'll go through them one by one.
    Manaphy MD is a very intriguing starter... I'm not sure if I currently have enough support to end up with four energy in my hand by T2 (two for Manaphy, and two for the effect), but if I could make that happen, I'd have a much better chance at T3 Swampert. Good suggestion.
    I very seriously considered this, but the biggest problem is that I definitely don't like persistent Tools on Pokemon who are lightning weak... I'm not yet convinced that Call Energy is replacing Pachi, and giving up 80 damage for one energy is painful. Also, adding an Unown Q gives me yet another terrible starter, which I'm reluctant to do.
    Strength Charms tend to find more use on Palkia than Swampert, to 2HKO anybody with 130HP. Then again, perhaps they aren't as useful as I might hope. The big thing I like about Lapras is being able to search out a Roseanne, which guarantees T2 Mantine if I need it. However, dropping Lapras would open up five spots in my deck. It's very much worth considering.
    I don't run any discard Supporters, so Rotom would not make for a good starter. However, it's definitely a consideration for quick recovery in the mid-game. A successful Transback flip is nice, and often game-saving, but it definitely puts me a couple turns behind too... Rotom could get me back on my feel a little faster.
    I have considered it, but I'm not impressed. Leftovers has the same problem as Unown Q... huge risk if Pachi shows up. I thought Dawn Stadium could be a good play, but it turns out that most of my attachments end up on Pokemon who haven't yet taken any damage, because they're on the bench. My active is usually being fed by Wash Out, which doesn't trigger the effect of Dawn. Also, Dawn is a horrible draw against Empoleon or Leafeon, which concerns me.
    Energy does tend to end up there eventually... there are actually times when I search my deck and discover that I'm totally out of water. Nonetheless, another POV could very well be a better replacement, if it would help me speed up to the point that I'd rarely have to go that far.
    Multi is for Marshtomp and *cringe* Duskull. I agree that DRE is almost certainly better. I'm thinking that Holon's Castform could also work here (except for the starting problem). Castform is nice because it gives me a searchable way to power up Dusknoir, and to replace my deactivated Scrambles with something that Swampert will be able to manipulate.
    Ick. 3-2-2 is actually kind of ugly. I guess I'll need to test both 3-2-3 and 2-1-2.
    The reason I am able to play Supporters every turn is because of Lapras and Scott (though never at the same time... I'm with you on that). Mr. Stone may very well go, but Scott is great for getting useful things, and thinning my deck just a smidge. Battle Frontier is important, because I realized (fortunately before actually having to face it) that Aerodactyl totally thrashes Swampert.
    I know that I've got Island Hermit to look at my prizes, but prizing my Palkia Lv.X totally ruins the usefulness of the Palkia start, so I feel like I'm better off at 2-2.
    I actually picked one of those up, but it wasn't doing very much for me. The power is rarely useful, and the attack is not as good as it sounds, since it's really rare for me to be holding something that I'm interested in discarding. Also, the usual EX problems show up... extra prize for my opponent in exchange for just 20HP, no Scramble/DRE, and I'd have to trade in a Celio for a Bebe.

    Thanks to everyone who has helped me so far.
  9. TIZNE

    TIZNE New Member

    That's true, but the odds are that you are not always starting with palkia, and even less having your Palkia Lv. X prized. I'm just saying that its a risk that may be worth taking. Just give it a try.:biggrin:
  10. revdjweb

    revdjweb New Member

    there is another solution to the palkia issue and that is simply don't run any mantine but do run 4 switch cards and simply don't use palkia lvl x's power unless you have a switch in your hand. being able to pick the matchup you want 4 times in a game might be enough to win.
  11. Pajamas

    Pajamas <a href="http://pokegym.net/forums/showpost.php?p=

    Okay, I'll try it.
    That's a thought that I hadn't considered. The thing about Mantine, though, is that he has more uses beyond just Restructure situations. I like being able to always move my starter out of the way (used to be Lapras, now maybe Manaphy) and reuse its energy as soon as I get Swampert up. Also, all of the other attacks in this deck that do more than 20 damage require three or four energy... I've found Giant Wave to be a huge lifesaver while recharging many, many times.
  12. TIZNE

    TIZNE New Member

    At least that setting works for me :redface:
    Good luck!
  13. Pajamas

    Pajamas <a href="http://pokegym.net/forums/showpost.php?p=

    I've rearranged things a bit, and this is where I'm at:

    Pokemon (20):
    3-2-3 Swampert GE (with Mudkip CG #57)
    2-2 Palkia Lv.X GE
    1-1 Mantine MT
    1-0-1 Dusknoir DP
    2 Manaphy MD
    1 Rotom MD
    1 Holon's Castform HP

    Trainers (22):
    1 Battle Frontier
    4 Celio's Network
    1 Island Hermit
    1 Night Maintenance
    3 Professor Oak's Visit
    4 Rare Candy
    3 Roseanne's Research
    1 Scott
    2 Switch
    2 Windstorm

    Energy (17):
    11 :water:
    1 :fighting:
    2 Double Rainbow
    3 Scramble

    I'm still considering going to 3-1 on the Palkia line, and possibly replacing Dusknoir with more Mantine or something else entirely. I also have one open spot to add just about anything. Thoughts?
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