Deoxys – Fusion Strike
December 7, 2021
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Deoxys (SW – Fusion Strike 120/264; SW – Black Star Promos SWSH170) is unique because, to date, it is the only Pokémon with multiple Battle Styles. In fact, it knows all three Battle Styles: Fusion Strike, Rapid Strike, and Single Strike! While this means it has to contend with the recently released counters Gorebyss (SW – Fusion Strike 067) and Huntail (SW – Fusion Strike 066/264). Well, Gorebyss won’t matter because its trick is that its Ability, “Rapid Strike Canceler” turns off the Abilities of Rapid Strike Pokémon and Deoxys has no Abilities. Huntail’s Ability still matters, though: its “Single Strike Jammer” increases the attack cost of Single Strike Pokémon by [C]. I believe the wording even allows instances of Single Strike Pokémon to stack, so two of it means your opponent pays [CC] more, there mean [CCC] more, and four mean [CCCC] more! If you’re wondering why on Earth you’d want these in a deck with Deoxys… they’re both Fusion Strike Pokémon themselves.
Deoxys is still fortunate to sport all three Battle Styles. It is possible you can do something spectacular by mixing and matching all three styles, but it is nice having something you can slot into each deck, letting it take advantage of that Battle Style’s support. Deoxys is a Basic Pokémon, after all, so you can pretty easily TecH in a copy, go for the full for, or something in between. Deoxys is a [P] type, so you can also snag it with Fog Crystal, safely attach Energy to it while Old Cemetery is in play, and/or attach to it with the Ability found on Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX. This is also handy for exploiting the [P] Weakness found on a decent chunk of Fighting types… like Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX.
Deoxys has 120 HP. It has been a long, long time since this was the printed maximum HP available to a Pokémon. Deoxys does not have a Rule Box and is only worth one Prize when KO’d, so this is still decent. The paradoxical biggest of the small attacks can OHKO it, but at the majority of the lower damage, more technical attacks should fall short. Darkness types will have it easy, thanks to [D] Weakness; just 60 damage base will score a OHKO. You do get some [F] Weakness to help balance that out; any Resistance is better than none, and this might help Deoxys survive a hit from Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX. Deoxys has a Retreat Cost of [C]; not as good as a free Retreat Cost, but good nonetheless.
Deoxys only knows a single attack, “Photon Boost”. For [CCC], this does 80 damage and that… isn’t good. There’s more, though: Photon Boost’s effect text states that it does 80 more damage (so 160 total) if “this Pokémon” has at least one Fusion Strike Energy attached to itself. 160 for three is solid, especially from a single Prize attacker that can access so much support. It does mean that, run off type, you’re either using it to exploit its typing and/or still including at least Fusion Strike Energy… and that seems pretty tempting. In actual Fusion Strike decks, you can drop a Power Tablet on Deoxys and – provided it has enough to pay for Photon Boost, including a Fusion Strike Energy attached – and you’re one-shotting something like Crobat V. Not that impressive, but you’re also scoring a OHKO against Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX, due to that card’s [P] Weakness.
You might consider having a copy in Mew VMAX/Genesect V decks. There are harder hitting Fusion Strike Pokémon it can copy, but this is a Basic and the only drawback is needing a Fusion Strike Energy attached. Single Strike decks, assuming they also make room for Fusion Strike Energy, can replace Power Tablet with a Single Strike Energy. Probably one attached via Houndoom (SW – Battle Styles 096/163, 179/163, SW – Black Star Promos SWSH090; SW – Evolving Skies 179/163), or rather, its Ability. Both Single Strike and Fusion Strike decks have the capacity to add extra damage, though Single Strike has extra options. Rapid Strike decks don’t, but they do have the easiest to use Energy acceleration in the form of Rapid Strike Energy.
There still haven’t been any official tournaments featuring the latest expansion. This is a bit of a problem because Limitless does list results and decks from non-Championship series tournaments, but not in the same fashion. Instead of a page that I can easily check through Search Fu (…Ctrl+F), I’ve got to pull up each deck individually, based on its name/main focus. While a “Deoxys deck” is plausible, it isn’t likely. Glancing through the a sampling of those results, I’m not seeing them slotted into some of the decks I thought more likely to contain Deoxys. Due to its interesting mix of characteristics, though, I’m still going to award Deoxys a three-out-of-five for both Formats. It has some potential, and if the powers-that-be have any more Battle Style stuff coming, it has future potential as well.
- Standard: 3/5
- Expanded: 3/5
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