Popular Decks at the 2016 Pokémon TCG World Championships

The field of Pokémon TCG decks here at the World Championships have ranged from well-known decks that have been strong all season to brand new decks that players are just now trying out competitively. Take a look at some sample decks representing the amazing diversity and creativity of the players. Be sure to check out more Pokémon TCG and video game tournament coverage and analysis at Pokemon.com/Strategy.

  • Hairul Hamzah / Zygarde / Carbink
    Zygarde / Carbink / Masters Division
  • Luis Nolasco / Vespiquen / Vileplume
    Vespiquen / Vileplume / Masters Division
  • Brandon Jones / Vespiquen / Yanmega
    Vespiquen / Yanmega / Masters Division
  • Kenny Britton / Night March
    Night March / Masters Division
  • Joshua Doctolero / Yveltal / Zoroark BREAK
    Yveltal / Zoroark BREAK / Masters Division
  • Julien Dallé / Mega Sceptile-EX
    Mega Sceptile-EX / Masters Division
  • Masataka Hirano / Volcanion
    Volcanion / Masters Division
  • Carter Copeland / Seismitoad-EX / Crawdaunt
    Seismitoad-EX / Crawdaunt / Masters Division
  • Gonzalo Fernandez / Wailord-EX
    Wailord-EX / Masters Division

Malaysia’s Hairul Hamzah used a version of the Vileplume Fighting deck that we had started to see more frequently at later National Championships. Unlike most of the other players in the competition, Hairul opted not to add any of the new cards from XY—Steam Siege, but he did have a card we don’t always see in this type of deck in the Magnetic Storm Stadium card.

Pokémon
  • 2
    Zygarde-EX
    54/124
    xy10 54
  • 1
    Lucario-EX
    107/111
    xy3 107
  • 3
    Carbink BREAK
    51/124
    xy10 51
  • 2
    Carbink
    50/124
    xy10 50
  • 1
    Carbink
    49/124
    xy10 49
  • 2
    Shaymin-EX
    106/108
    xy6 106
  • 2
    Vileplume
    3/98
    xy7 3
  • 2
    Gloom
    2/98
    xy7 2
  • 3
    Oddish
    1/98
    xy7 1
Energy Cards
  • 6
    Fighting Energy
    xy1 137
  • 4
    Strong Energy
    xy10 115
Trainer Cards
  • 4
    Ultra Ball
    xy10 113
  • 4
    Trainers’ Mail
    xy6 92
  • 3
    Forest of Giant Plants
    xy7 74
  • 2
    Fighting Fury Belt
    xy9 99
  • 2
    Float Stone
    xy8 137
  • 2
    Level Ball
    xy7 76
  • 1
    Revitalizer
    g1 70
  • 1
    Magnetic Storm
    xy2 91
  • 4
    N
    bw5 96
  • 3
    Professor Sycamore
    xy1 122
  • 3
    AZ
    xy4 91
  • 2
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
  • 1
    Xerosic
    xy4 110
More Info Copy Deck List

Like many other players, Luis Nolasco of Mexico used a deck that took advantage of the speedy starts Forest of Giant Plants enabled. The classic combination of Vileplume and Vespiquen seeks to stop foes from doing the same by locking the use of Item cards with Vileplume once the setup is complete. Luis’s version of the deck varies from the norm by including Jolteon-EX and some Lightning Energy. While these cards don’t help the consistency of Luis’ normal strategy, the combination of Item lock and Jolteon-EX’s Flash Ray can be very difficult for many decks to stop.

Pokémon
  • 2
    Jolteon-EX
    28/83
    g1 28
  • 1
    Bunnelby
    121/160
    xy5 121
  • 3
    Shaymin-EX
    106/108
    xy6 106
  • 2
    Vileplume
    3/98
    xy7 3
  • 2
    Gloom
    2/98
    xy7 2
  • 2
    Oddish
    1/98
    xy7 1
  • 3
    Vespiquen
    10/98
    xy7 10
  • 3
    Combee
    9/98
    xy7 9
  • 3
    Unown
    30/98
    xy7 30
  • 2
    Jirachi
    XY67
    xyp XY67
Energy Cards
  • 3
    Lightning Energy
    xy1 135
  • 4
    Double Colorless Energy
    xy1 130
Trainer Cards
  • 2
    N
    bw5 96
  • 3
    Professor Sycamore
    xy1 122
  • 2
    AZ
    xy4 91
  • 1
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
  • 4
    Battle Compressor Team Flare Gear
    xy4 92
  • 2
    Muscle Band
    xy1 121
  • 1
    Float Stone
    bw9 99
  • 2
    Revitalizer
    g1 70
  • 1
    Level Ball
    bw4 89
  • 4
    Trainers’ Mail
    xy6 92
  • 4
    Ultra Ball
    bw10 90
  • 4
    Forest of Giant Plants
    xy7 74
More Info Copy Deck List

Brandon Jones represented the United States using a deck that combined Vesipquen and Yanmega BREAK that can get rolling extremely quickly using four Shaymin-EX. The Forest of Giant Plants Stadium card allows Brandon to quickly evolve both of his lines of attackers, and Brandon can use Revitalizer to get either of his main lines of Pokemon cards out of the discard pile, too.

Pokémon
  • 3
    Vespiquen
    10/98
    xy7 10
  • 4
    Combee
    9/98
    xy7 9
  • 3
    Yanmega BREAK
    8/114
    xy11 8
  • 4
    Yanmega
    7/114
    xy11 7
  • 4
    Yanma
    3/119
    xy4 3
  • 4
    Shaymin-EX
    106/108
    xy6 106
Energy Cards
  • 4
    Double Colorless Energy
    xy1 130
Trainer Cards
  • 4
    Forest of Giant Plants
    xy7 74
  • 4
    Ultra Ball
    bw10 90
  • 4
    Professor Sycamore
    xy1 122
  • 4
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
  • 2
    N
    bw5 96
  • 3
    VS Seeker
    xy4 109
  • 3
    Trainers’ Mail
    xy6 92
  • 3
    Battle Compressor Team Flare Gear
    xy4 92
  • 3
    Revitalizer
    g1 70
  • 3
    Muscle Band
    xy1 121
  • 1
    Special Charge
    xy11 105
More Info Copy Deck List

The combination of Night March and Vespiquen has been popular since Vespiquen’s release in XY—Ancient Origins, and Kenny Britton from the United States was one of many players that tried it out again in San Francisco. With one copy of Special Charge from XY—Steam Siege and a full set of four Puzzle of Time Trainer cards, it was very difficult for opponents to run Kenny out of Double Colorless Energy. He also had Captivating Poké Puff and Target Whistle Team Flare Gear to disrupt his opponents’ strategies by benching unwanted Pokémon.

Pokémon
  • 4
    Lampent
    42/119
    xy4 42
  • 4
    Joltik
    26/119
    xy4 26
  • 4
    Pumpkaboo
    44/119
    xy4 44
  • 3
    Shaymin-EX
    77/108
    xy6 77
  • 2
    Vespiquen
    10/98
    xy7 10
  • 3
    Combee
    9/98
    xy7 9
  • 3
    Unown
    30/98
    xy7 30
Energy Cards
  • 4
    Double Colorless Energy
    xy1 130
Trainer Cards
  • 4
    Ultra Ball
    bw10 90
  • 4
    AZ
    xy4 91
  • 4
    VS Seeker
    xy4 109
  • 4
    Puzzle of Time
    xy9 109
  • 2
    Lysandre
    xy2 104
  • 1
    Special Charge
    xy11 105
  • 1
    Target Whistle Team Flare Gear
    xy4 106
  • 1
    Teammates
    xy5 141
  • 1
    Escape Rope
    xy5 127
  • 1
    Hex Maniac
    xy7 75
  • 1
    N
    bw5 96
  • 1
    Startling Megaphone
    xy2 97
  • 1
    Pokémon Ranger
    xy11 104
  • 2
    Dimension Valley
    xy4 93
  • 1
    Captivating Poké Puff
    xy11 99
  • 4
    Professor Sycamore
    xy1 122
More Info Copy Deck List

Joshua Doctolero from the Philippines was one of the many players that opted to bring back the previously popular Zoroark BREAK and Yveltal deck. Joshua chose a consistent build using Shaymin-EX as his only Pokémon-EX, forcing opponents to knock out more Pokémon to win the match than against more Pokémon-EX-heavy decks. He also included two copies of Captivating Poké Puff from XY—Steam Siege to his deck, which he can combine with Lysandre to take easy prizes from Pokémon his opponent didn’t want to bench.

Pokémon
  • 1
    Zoroark BREAK
    92/162
    xy8 92
  • 4
    Zoroark
    91/162
    xy8 91
  • 4
    Zorua
    72/146
    xy1 72
  • 2
    Yveltal
    94/162
    xy8 94
  • 2
    Yveltal
    78/146
    xy1 78
  • 2
    Shaymin-EX
    77/108
    xy6 77
  • 1
    Druddigon
    70/106
    xy2 70
Energy Cards
  • 4
    Double Colorless Energy
    xy1 130
  • 6
    Darkness Energy
    xy1 138
Trainer Cards
  • 4
    Professor Sycamore
    xy4 101
  • 2
    N
    bw5 96
  • 2
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
  • 1
    Hex Maniac
    xy7 75
  • 1
    Giovanni’s Scheme
    xy8 138
  • 1
    Xerosic
    xy4 110
  • 1
    Delinquent
    xy9 98
  • 4
    VS Seeker
    xy4 109
  • 4
    Ultra Ball
    bw10 90
  • 3
    Trainers’ Mail
    xy6 92
  • 3
    Muscle Band
    xy1 121
  • 2
    Float Stone
    bw9 99
  • 2
    Captivating Poké Puff
    xy11 99
  • 1
    Battle Compressor Team Flare Gear
    xy4 92
  • 1
    Super Rod
    dv1 20
  • 1
    Reverse Valley
    xy9 110
  • 1
    Parallel City
    xy8 145
More Info Copy Deck List

Masters Division player Julien Dallé of France went all in with Sceptile-EX and Mega Sceptile-EX, including no other Pokémon on his team. Julien could keep his multiple Mega Sceptile-EX powered up and healthy with the Jagged Saber attack, while nullifying the effect of his opponent’s Pokémon’s Abilities thanks to the Θ Stop Ancient trait. The limited Pokémon count gave him plenty of room to include all the Trainer cards he could desire; Julien ended up with 21 different Trainer cards in his deck.

Pokémon
  • 4
    Sceptile-EX
    XY53
    xyp XY53
  • 4
    M Sceptile-EX
    8/98
    xy7 8
Energy Cards
  • 10
    Grass Energy
    xy1 132
Trainer Cards
  • 4
    Professor Sycamore
    xy1 122
  • 3
    Pokémon Center Lady
    xy2 105
  • 1
    Pokémon Ranger
    xy11 113
  • 1
    Shauna
    xy1 127
  • 1
    Xerosic
    xy4 110
  • 1
    Giovanni’s Scheme
    xy8 162
  • 1
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
  • 2
    N
    bw5 96
  • 2
    Skyla
    xy9 122
  • 1
    Hex Maniac
    xy7 75
  • 2
    Steven
    xy7 95
  • 1
    Fisherman
    xy8 136
  • 1
    Battle Compressor Team Flare Gear
    xy4 92
  • 1
    Energy Retrieval
    xy5 126
  • 1
    Professor’s Letter
    xy1 123
  • 2
    Mega Turbo
    xy6 86
  • 4
    Ultra Ball
    bw10 90
  • 4
    Sceptile Spirit Link
    xy7 80
  • 1
    Repeat Ball
    xy5 136
  • 4
    VS Seeker
    xy4 109
  • 4
    Trainers’ Mail
    xy6 92
More Info Copy Deck List

Masataka Hirano in the Masters Division was one of several Japanese players to bring a deck focused on the new Volcanion and Volcanion-EX. The two variations work surprisingly well with each other: Volcanion-EX’s Steam Up Ability requires the player to discard Energy, while the non-EX Volcanion can retrieve Energy from the discard pile. Masataka chose to include two different Pyroar from which to play Pyroar BREAK, adding flexibility to this fun-to-play deck.

Pokémon
  • 4
    Volcanion
    25/114
    xy11 25
  • 4
    Volcanion-EX
    107/114
    xy11 107
  • 2
    Pyroar BREAK
    24/114
    xy11 24
  • 2
    Pyroar
    12/119
    xy4 12
  • 2
    Pyroar
    20/106
    xy2 20
  • 3
    Litleo
    22/114
    xy11 22
  • 1
    Litleo
    18/106
    xy2 18
  • 2
    Shaymin-EX
    77/108
    xy6 77
Energy Cards
  • 13
    Fire Energy
    xy1 133
Trainer Cards
  • 2
    Scorched Earth
    xy10 110
  • 2
    Float Stone
    bw9 99
  • 3
    Fighting Fury Belt
    xy9 99
  • 1
    Startling Megaphone
    xy2 97
  • 1
    Super Rod
    dv1 20
  • 3
    VS Seeker
    xy4 109
  • 4
    Professor Sycamore
    xy1 122
  • 4
    N
    bw5 96
  • 3
    Blacksmith
    xy2 88
  • 1
    Xerosic
    xy4 110
  • 1
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
More Info Copy Deck List

Carter Copeland from the United States started his deck with one of the most successful Pokémon cards of all-time, Seismitoad-EX. The way he finished his deck was much more exciting, as he used the Crawdaunt from XY—Primal Clash, the Crushing Hammer Item card, and the Team Flare Grunt and Xerosic Supporter cards to discard his opponent’s Energy cards. Carter also included other disruptive cards such as Hex Maniac, Red Card, Silent Lab, Startling Megaphone, and Jolteon-EX in his deck to make it even harder for his opponents to execute their strategies.

Pokémon
  • 3
    Seismitoad-EX
    106/111
    xy3 106
  • 3
    Corphish
    42/160
    xy5 42
  • 3
    Crawdaunt
    92/160
    xy5 92
  • 1
    Jolteon-EX
    28/83
    g1 28
  • 1
    Lugia-EX
    68/98
    xy7 68
  • 2
    Shaymin-EX
    77/108
    xy6 77
Energy Cards
  • 3
    Lightning Energy
    xy1 135
  • 4
    Double Colorless Energy
    xy1 130
Trainer Cards
  • 3
    Professor Sycamore
    xy1 122
  • 2
    N
    bw5 96
  • 1
    AZ
    xy4 91
  • 1
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
  • 1
    Xerosic
    xy4 110
  • 1
    Hex Maniac
    xy7 75
  • 1
    Team Flare Grunt
    xy1 129
  • 1
    Ninja Boy
    xy11 103
  • 4
    Ultra Ball
    bw10 90
  • 4
    VS Seeker
    xy4 109
  • 4
    Super Scoop Up
    xy3 100
  • 4
    Crushing Hammer
    g1 60
  • 3
    Trainers’ Mail
    xy6 92
  • 2
    Red Card
    g1 71
  • 2
    Fighting Fury Belt
    xy9 99
  • 1
    Muscle Band
    xy1 121
  • 1
    Float Stone
    bw9 99
  • 1
    Startling Megaphone
    xy2 97
  • 1
    Super Rod
    dv1 20
  • 2
    Silent Lab
    xy5 140
More Info Copy Deck List

Gonzalo Fernandez managed to go 5-2-1 on Friday with one of the more creative decks we’ve seen used successfully in a major competition. He made up his deck using Pokémon that are super difficult to knock out—Wailord-EX’s massive HP, Aegislash-EX’s Mighty Guard Ability, and Carbink’s Safeguard Ability can all help Gonzalo stall out games. The Argentinian combined these natural strengths with Trainer cards that make his Pokémon even harder to knock out, including Max Potion, AZ, Enhanced Hammer, Rough Seas, Fighting Fury Belt, and Team Flare Grunt, and Cassius.

Pokémon
  • 1
    Bunnelby
    121/160
    xy5 121
  • 1
    Dedenne
    34/111
    xy3 34
  • 2
    Durant
    61/106
    xy2 61
  • 2
    Carbink
    50/124
    xy10 50
  • 2
    Aegislash-EX
    65/119
    xy4 65
  • 3
    Wailord-EX
    147/160
    xy5 147
Energy Cards
  • 3
    Fairy Energy
    xy1 140
Trainer Cards
  • 1
    Enhanced Hammer
    bw5 94
  • 1
    Team Rocket’s Handiwork
    xy10 124
  • 1
    Xerosic
    xy4 119
  • 1
    Steven
    xy7 95
  • 2
    Lysandre
    xy2 90
  • 3
    Fighting Fury Belt
    xy9 99
  • 3
    Skyla
    bw7 134
  • 3
    Cassius
    xy1 115
  • 3
    AZ
    xy4 91
  • 4
    Max Potion
    xy9 103
  • 4
    Puzzle of Time
    xy9 109
  • 4
    VS Seeker
    xy4 109
  • 4
    Pokémon Fan Club
    xy2 106
  • 4
    Team Flare Grunt
    xy1 129
  • 4
    N
    bw5 96
  • 4
    Rough Seas
    xy5 137
More Info Copy Deck List
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