Playing Chess, Not Checkers

The Sword and Shield meta has settled into place after the Oceania International Championship. With this knowledge, I have modified the Roxie Checkmate that I used to get top eight at Kuala Lumpur Regionals to fit the new format. The archetype needed to change as Professor Elm’s Lecture is not as good with the new turn one Supporter rules. The matchup spread has gotten even better with the shift away from Green’s Exploration based decks. Since Checkmate is more of a rogue concept I will first cover the general strategy of the deck before explaining the list and specific matchups. Let’s get to it!

Table of Contents:

– The Checkmate Strategy

– The List

– Card by Card Analysis

– Potential Inclusions

– Matchup Analyses

– Closing Thoughts

The Checkmate Strategy

Naganadel’s Stinger GX makes both players shuffle all their remaining prizes into the deck and then lay out three new prizes. The Checkmate archetype plans to take no prizes in the first half of the game, and use Roxie & Koffing/Weezing to spread damage counters on the opponent’s side of the field. The goal is to set up a knockout on three prizes worth of Pokemon, use Stinger GX, then finish off the knockouts that were previously set up. Against Tag Team and V-Max based decks, only one big knockout is needed to set up the win post-Stinger GX. However, one prize based decks, like Psychic Malamar & Obstagoon, will require setting up multiple Pokemon to be knocked out in order to win post-Stinger GX. When the opponent has two prizes left, four prizes left for ADP Zacian due to Altered Creation GX, play down both copies of Poipole, or one Poipole and a Ditto Prism. When the opponent has one prize left evolve into Naganadel GX with an Island Challenge Amulet attached and use Stinger GX to reset both players to three prizes each. You can add in a Reset Stamp before using Stinger GX to leave the opponent with one card in hand, and thus making it much harder for the opponent to respond.

The List

2x Raise Dead
2x Draconic Studies
2x Holy Smite
2x Renew
2x Condemn (Rank 1)
2x Insight
2x Sethekk Veilweaver
2x Shadow Word: Death
2x Apotheosis
2x Hysteria
1x Mindrender Illucia
2x Palm Reading
1x Xyrella
2x Wandmaker
2x Venomous Scorpid
1x Blademaster Samuro
1x Ysera the Dreamer
2x First Day of School
2x Conviction (Rank 1)
2x Knight of Anointment
2x Righteous Protector
2x Hand of A'dal
2x Goody Two-Shields
2x Underlight Angling Rod
2x Blessing of Kings
1x Cariel Roame
2x Blessing of Authority
2x Hammer of the Naaru
2x Crabrider
2x Cult Neophyte
1x Nerubian Egg
1x Blademaster Samuro
1x Moonfang
1x Ogremancer
1x Alexstrasza the Life-Binder
2x Brain Freeze
2x Devolving Missiles
2x Lab Partner
2x Primordial Studies
2x Shooting Star
2x Wand Thief
2x Cram Session
2x Imprisoned Phoenix
2x Incanter's Flow
2x Runed Orb
2x Arcane Intellect
2x Fireball
2x Refreshing Spring Water
1x Aegwynn, the Guardian
1x Ras Frostwhisper
2x Mask of C'Thun

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