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Freeze Your Opponent's Board Development for a Quick Win!
For Pokémon enthusiasts who enjoy playing fast and powerful combos, there are few decks archetypes that provide a better experience than Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX with Inteleon from Sword & Shield Base Set.
This deck is built to feed its players with a reliable series of Pokémon and Trainer cards that enable them to manipulate their decks to play consistently. Players will quickly be capable of dealing the deck's most powerful attacks, often by their second turn.
If you enjoy aggressively controlling the early game and pressuring your opponent to spend more resources protecting their own Pokémon than attacking yours, the Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX with Inteleon build may be the deck for you!
Let's take a look at the deck list.
Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX With Inteleon Decklist
Here's how you build the deck:
- 4x Ice Rider Calyrex V CRE
- 3x Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX CRE
- 4x Sobble CRE
- 4x Drizzile SSH
- 2x Inteleon SSH
- 1x Manaphy BRS
Trainer Cards: 34
- 4x Melony CRE
- 4x Path to the Peak CRE
- 4x Quick Ball SSH
- 3x Level Ball BST
- 3x Evolution Incense SSH
- 3x Marnie SSH
- 3x Boss's Orders SHF
- 3x Capacious Bucket RCL
- 2x Fan of Waves CRE
- 2x Professor's Research SSH
- 2x Air Balloon SSH
- 1x Bird Keeper SHF
Energy Cards: 8
- 8x Basic Energy Cards
Start Manipulating Your Deck on the First Turn!
In this deck build, you have an equal likelihood of starting with Sobble and Ice Rider Calyrex V in your opening hand. Fortunately, either are great contenders for the initial Acitve position, with Sobble offering a slight advantage as the Active Pokémon if you find yourself going second, and therefore capable of attacking first.
If you find that you don't have one of these cards in your opening hand, you can search for them using either Ultra Ball or Level Ball, with the latter only allowing you to tutor the Sobble, or its evolution: Drizzile.
Using Sobble's Keep Calling attack, you can instantly load your bench with other Sobbles, readying them to evolve into Drizzile by the second turn, triggering Drizzile's Shady Dealings Ability, and allowing you to search your deck for a Trainer card.
The ideal early game combo in this scenario is ensuring that you have an Ice Rider Calyrex V in play by turn two. Then, you will use Ultra Ball to discard a Basic Water Energy and search for whatever basic Pokémon you might need. After doing this, you can use Melony to attach the discarded energy to your Ice Rider Calyrex V, draw three cards, and then attach an energy to your Ice Rider Calyrex V from your hand.
By the end of your second turn Main Phase, you will have drawn at least twelve, but as many as fifteen or more cards from your deck, nearly guaranteeing your chances of drawing into one Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX if none are Prized, and allowing you to evolve your Ice Rider Calyrex V assuming that it entered the field on your first turn. Or, if you don't draw into the VMAX but do get your hands on an Evolution Incense, you can use this item card to search for the VMAX.
Then, with two Energies attached to Ice Rider Calyrex, you can retreat the Drizzile from the Active Position, replacing it with Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX, and attack with either Ride of the High King for 10 to 160, or Max Lance for 250!
Of course, the latter attack will require you to discard the attached energies. But don't worry! By using Melony and Capacious Bucket, you can quickly reattached lost energies, reliably allowing you to reload your VMAX to attack the following turn.
Freezing Your Opponent
Though this deck tends to come out swinging in the early game, if it doesn't quickly win via knocking out the only Pokémon on the field or forcing your opponent's concession, it tends to slow down as the game progresses. This is largely due to the fact that using Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX's Max Lance attack requires you to discard Energy cards, and you might not always be able to get the resources you need to attach two energies the following turn.
Because of this, the deck plays a few strategies to slow the opponent's board development down, allowing you time to recover between turns to recharge your Active Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX.
These cards include:
- Path to the Peak, a Stadium which nullifies the Abilities of your opponent's V and VMAX Pokémon,
- Manaphy from Brilliant Stars, a Pokémon that's Water Veil Ability prevents attack damage targeting your Benched Pokémon.
- Marnie, a Supporter which compels your opponent to place their hand on the bottom of their deck and draw four cards.
- Boss's Orders, a Support that allows you to force one of your opponent's Benched Pokémon into the Active position.
- Fan of Waves, an Item card that allows you to remove a Special Energy card from one of your opponent's Pokémon!
Unlocking Your Own Board
Your goal should be to mitigate the potential damage you will receive between turns by locking up your opponent's turns with the cards mentioned above.
However, this deck does play a few cards that will allow you to easily manipulate your side of the board in instances where you cannot get the restorative resources needed to continuously attack, or when you need to protect your Ice Rider Calyrex VMAXs from being knocked out:
- Air Balloon, a Pokétool that reduces the retreat cost of a Pokémon by two colorless energies.
- Bird Keeper, a Supporter that allows you to swap out your Active Pokémon for a Benched Pokémon and draw three cards.
- The Inteleon Evolutionary Line will also support your board flexibility by allowing you to search for a total of three Trainer cards as you evolve from Sobble to Drizzile to Inteleon.
The decklist above is absolutely a solid option for entering the competitive Pokémon TCG landscape.
Though it does tend to repeat a lot of the same turn strategies over-and-over, this deck regularly forces opponents to reconsider which Pokémon they want to invest their board development in, and plays in a consistent manner that provides multiple avenues for managing mid-game development using Item and Supporter cards.
If you want to learn more about how to play the Pokémon trading card game, you can check out my Comprehensive Guide!