The Strategic Philosophies
of The Impossible Man
(an IPGeek21 Exclusive!!!)
Greetings everyone. I am Henry-Michael
Brown aka The Impossible
Man. Well it is 2001 and has been well over 2 years
since I started playing the TCG, But on July 9th, 1999 I entered the Old Pokegym boards and introduced a
new Deck. At first I named it Status Speed but later that same night I renamed it the Cleaner. From that point on I studied and researched every possible aspect
of Deck Construction and Strategy with the Cleaner while facing many decks including the Haymaker,
Raindance, Wiggly, and Damage
Swap. Since then I have come across many decks people
came out to say it was broke or going to change the Meta-game. Some of it came true
and some of it didn't.
During this time I started to experiment deckbuilding using various cards
some Conclusivly claimed "unviable" without even first experimenting the
card. The result was that I ended up with three decks that compete in a
tournament without using much of the "usual and viable" cards people have
glorifed and treated as godlike in the TCG.
All Political views aside. I am here to leave behind many of the Philosophies
that I have developed through Deck Building and Strategy.
Note that these Philosophies are not an Opinion View
or Hard Based Facts.
These are my skills that has been tempered and perfected through the 2 years
of my tenure in the TCG. This is not gospel and should NOT be taken as the
absolute way to deck building. The purpose of these Philosophies is to help
Deck Builders seek advice or research in the Art of Deck Building and
Everyone has their own Natural Skill and Ability in the TCG. Mine is one
method among many.
Where to begin?
Well just a few minutes ago I posted up my Latest upgrade of the Converter. I was
suggested to use Goop Gas Attack.
Which is bad a Suggestion. Here is why.
Philosophy #1 "Never use a Trainer that
can Compromise your Strategy no matter how effective it may be".
The Converter Strategy
is to use Dark Gloom's Pollen
Stench Pokemon Power to Confuse your Opponent. Then you use Porygon to change the Opponent's Weakness so you can do Double Damage with your Basics. I just recently
added Dark Vileplume. But
the reason Goop Gas is
a bad Suggestion is because you Need Pollen Stench Pokemon Power to make the Converter
work. Yes you can get around it but Strategically
you may find yourself in a position that would force you to use Goop
Gas before you Pollen Stench and could backfire your whole Strategy. The last thing you need
is to use a card that can hinder your Strategy and give your opponent an advantage.
Another example is Prof. Elm
in Trainer Heavy Decks. Elm
doesn't let you use your Trainers after playing the card so if your whole deck relies
on Trainer Combos Prof. Elm
will disrupt it.
Which brings me to this Philosophy#2... "Don't
Just because you have control over the whole game does not mean your Opponent is
out of it. I remember in one of my Matches I had absolute Control of the Game but
lacked one Fire Energy
to start a Take Down on my Opponent. Since I had control of the Game I arrogantly
opted not to use Flamethrower on a Energy-less Wigglytuff because I was going to try to topdeck Fire Energy. The result was
an Embarassing loss because I overlooked the overall aspect of the round. In the
end he had an Oak in his
hand and recovered nicely.
Philosophy#3... "Give Each Pokemon a role"
It is very important to give a Pokemon a role in your deck while doing the
overall part in the deck. In the Cleaner each Pokemon I use have a special
role that voers each other. One of the most noted is Koffing. Many people
flamed me for using it because they limited their mentality to 10 Damage on 2 Grass Energy. (Never mind that it has
a Win-Win coin Flip for Confusion
and Poison.) Well I figured
that since Koffing is the
only Pokemon that has a Win-win flip I would make it a good distraction to my Opponent.
So all I did was place one Grass Energy on Koffing.
My Opponent wastes their ER
(Sometimes SER) on that
lone Grass Energy. All
this so they don't have to face Confusion or Poison
from Koffing's Foul
Gas. And thus Koffing's Role
as the Pokemon that flushes out ER/SERs. Lickitung
in the Cleaner acts as my Staller. It sits there does Tongue wrap while at
the same Absorbing all that Damage and then Scoop Up Comes in. I only lose one Energy card but lasted long enough to
regroup and retaliate. When Building your deck, always give your Pokemon a small
seperate role from the Entire Strategy. It really helps make your deck Consistent
and gives you a small Strategy to fall back on.
Philosophy #4... "Stay Versatile"
You do not need to build your deck to focus on Beatdown Completely. Haymakers work so well because it has a balance of Trainers that Protect it
and provide Disruption. It is also one of two Archetypes that can use a multitude
of Pokemon and is not restricted to a Group of Pokemon (I.E. Wigglytuff,
Cleaner is the other. Basically I designed the Cleaner so it can take on anything
that comes at it and makes the opposing deck play at its level of pace. Haymaker is the Same thing. With
the Cleaner it features
Attack Combos, Disruption, Healing, an adjustable speed, and respective Beatdown. The Haymaker has Trainer Combos, Disruption, Healing, Adjustable Speed, and Respective
Beatdown. The thing is that if your deck does a little of something it will keep
your deck Unpredictable and throws your opponent off putting them in a guessing game.
Philosophy #5... "Trainers Support the Pokemon"
So many decks these are Trainer Dependant and don't rely on Pokemon. Some of them
work like Insanity
and others are Flawed like Trapper. Haymaker
when first Introduced follow the Trainer Supporting Pokemon Philosophy. But as its
Popularity grew many people eliminated that Philosophy and turned Haymaker into a despisable Mindless Beatdown deck. Haymaker
can still return to its roots since it can be adjusted to fit its own strategy. One
of things I have always noticed is that the Players waste half their deck just to
get a certain number of Pokemon out to do beatdown. At the same token a Status Effect Deck can make all
that a waste with a simple attack. This is where Status
Effects can hurt Trainer Dependant Decks. Trainer
Dependant decks lose the Trainers that they can use to eliminate Status Effects later
in the game just so they can have a quick beatdown. Basically
the point is that if you depend on your Trainer more than Your Pokemon's attacks
you will find yourself on the losing end.
Philosophy #5... "Consistency"
It is vital that your deck be Consistent. That means that your Attack is
Consistent, but also your Card Drawing. When building your Deck make sure you use
a Ratio that can give you good Consistent Draws. When I build my Deck I usually
go with 15 to 18 Pokemon, 20 to 24 Energy, and 20
to 23 Trainers. This provides me with the ability
to draw the cards I need when I need them. If you are drawing cards that you need
Consistently then you have a High Topdeck Probability going. Next you need
to Attack Consistently. Alot of Pokemon have Attacks that don't damage but people
ignore them and consider it "Sucks" because it doesn't do damage. Damage
is needed but it is not eveything. Shuckle for instance can Withdraw but it doesn't do Damage. Psychologically
I don't want my opponent to try to Withdraw because then they can get away from having
damage dealt to it. No matter what kind of Attack it may be, use it. That Particular
attack, whether it damage or not, can be difference in the game entirely.
Philosophy No#6... "Know your deck"
It is very important that you know your deck inside and out. Especially when you
post it in Message Boards or submit to a Deck garage. The people that reply
to your deck Don't know your deck and thus give bad advice or just random advice.
Sometimes people don't understand your deck and assumes it does one thing but will
be in for a rude awakening when you do the other. Some people will flame,
so it is vital to keep yourself in check and just explain thoroughly what your deck
is supposed to do. But you should also understand thoroughly, inside and out of what
your deck is capable of. I am still discovering things about the Cleaner
that I never realized and the Cleaner gets better and better. Analyze your deck methods and you too will
be amazed at what it does.
Philosophy# 7... "Thinning the Weakness"
By "Thinning the Weakness" I mean Spreading the Weakness your Pokemon have.
The Weakness that cause your Pokemon to suffer Double Damage is no joke. A
Simple 10 Hit Attack can turn into a consistant 20 hit Attack that results in a fast
KO. You don't want that. The thing you do not want at all is Sharing Weakness. Alot
of Pokemon Share Weaknesses and when you have two or Pokemon sharing a Weakness you
give your Opponent a Smorgasbord of Easy Ko's. One of the things I do when building
my Decks is Spread the Weakness to one per Pokemon. It is very difficult to do but
it can be done. Remember that the 6 Color Types have Two or Three Weaknesses among
Colorless: No Weakness, Fighting Weakness or Electric
Fire: No Weakness or Water Weakness
Electric: No Weakness or Fighting Weakness
Grass: Psychic Weakness or Fire Weakness
Water: No Weakness, Electric Weakness or Grass Weakness
Fighting: Grass Weakness, Water Weakness or Psychic
Psychic: No Weakness or Psychic Weakness
No Weakness means Pokemon that don't have a weakness to any Type I.E. the Legendary
Birds, Girafarig. As you can see is possible to have a Deck with Fire, Grass and
Colorless and the Weakness are thinned to Fighting(via
Colorless), Water(Via Fire), Psychic(Via Grass) and Fire(Via Grass). That
means you have four Different Pokemon with four Different Weaknesses making it hard
for your Opponent to Exploit with 1 Pokemon of their own.
Philosophy #9... "Playtest to measure your
When you build a deck you are using 60 cards in a deck with up to 4 of an
Individual card. It is important to never use only 1
card of anything.
Usually I start with an Energy
ratio of 24 Cards in a Dual Colored deck. That is 10 of each Basic Color and 4 DCEs. From their I use 15 to 18 Pokemon
and 20 to 23 Trainers. Once you fix it up then playtest. Get a feel as to what is
your weaknesses in the deck, Which Trainer are most effective and which Pokemon getting
the most out of their Attacks. Also it is Important to feel how fast your Pokemon
are recieving Energy in which they can attack Right away. If they are taking too
long to power up then throw in some 1 Energy Attacking Pokemon. If the Energy is
too much for Your Pokemon then shave some off. You feel the flow of your deck as
you playtest along. Who knows you might find an unknown Combo or Strategy that reall
Philosophy #10... "Focus"
Finally it is very important to keep your deck Focus. Don't scatter your
Strategy or try to build a deck that does too many at once. There are alot of
obvious Strategies like Swift Deck
or Agility to build but
there are others
that are hidden and can work when experimented on. But
when you build your deck make sure Trainer are Focused on Helping the Strategy and
your Pokemon work the Strategy in. If one Trainer card
or One Pokemon disrupts the flow of your deck remove it at once and try something
else. Focusing a deck requires Patience and endurance. Playtesting is the only way to know where your decks abilities
lies at. In the end your deck might be focused to the point that it can spend a few
turns beating your opponent down without giving them a a chance.
Wow 10 Philosophies. I didn't think I have this much. Well I hope this will
help you Deck Builders out researching on building a good deck or developing a good
Strategy. I Thank you in advance for reading my Philosophies and I wish you the best