Back in March of this year, I did a video on a Fight Alone Lucario deck. Recently I decided to give it another look, and found a host of cards has made this deck viable again.
Just in case you aren’t familiar with the concept, Lucario’s Fight Alone attack does 30 damage plus 60 more damage for each Pokémon fewer you have in play. So if you have one less pokemon on your bench, it does 90. It does 150 for 2, and 210 for 3. Anything past that is OHKO for EVERYTHING! It’s hard to think of many other stage 1 pokemon that can generate that kind of power. The trick is ensuring the bench imbalance which powers the attack.
But before we get to that aspect, let’s talk about the deck and some of the changes since the last version.
****** Pokémon Trading Card Game Deck List ******
##Pokémon - 13
* 1 Klefki STS 80
* 4 Riolu FCO 45
* 1 Cobalion STS 74
* 4 Lucario FCO 63
* 3 Wishiwashi SUM 44
##Trainer Cards - 35
* 4 Brooklet Hill GRI 120
* 4 Rescue Stretcher GRI 130
* 2 Sophocles BUS 123
* 2 Lillie SUM 122
* 3 Captivating Poké Puff STS 99
* 2 Evosoda XY 116
* 3 Guzma BUS 115
* 3 Peeking Red Card CIN 97
* 4 N FCO 105
* 4 Professor Sycamore PHF 101
* 4 Exp. Share PRC 128
##Energy - 12
* 4 Counter Energy CIN 100
* 8 Metal Energy Energy 8
Total Cards - 60
****** Deck List Generated by the Pokémon TCG Online www.pokemon.com/TCGO ******
Most obvious is that Wishiwashi replaces Unown. Unfortunately this is a downgrade for the deck. Unown netted you a card on departure, which at least turned it into a placeholder shortening the deck a bit, and even providing a tiny amount of draw. Wishi just goes back into your hand, which when recycled back in just clogs the deck. In the best of worlds they either get knocked out or go into your discard pile via Sycamore or Sophocles.
The only benefit from Wishiwashi is that it can be summoned via the stadium Brooklet Hill. This is a nice addition to Lucario, as you can conjure either Riolu or Wishi with it. Unlike other decks if your opponent uses Booklet Hill’s effect it actually benefits you in terms of enhancing Lucario’s attack.
Another interesting synergy is Captivating Poké Puff and Peeking Red Card. As I alluded to before a savvy opponent will withhold their pokemon, and just play the bare minimum. In those matchups you may have to coax their pokemon out of their hand and onto their bench. If you have both of these together, it makes the job easier. Using Peeking Red Card first you can determine if your opponent has 1 or more basics in their hand, and then use Poké Puff to put them on their bench.
If they aren’t holding any pokemon when you cast Peeking Red Card, you can have redraw a new hand. Depending on how many cards they have you can decide to play Captivating Poké Puff at that time or hold it for later. At worst you may have disrupted their hand. At best you’ll drop a few Tapu Lele on their bench that they were withholding.
Yet another pleasant addition to this deck is Counter Energy. Once you’re down in prizes, this card will power your Lucario in a single turn. It actually holds an odd synergy with Wishiwashi – as its poor constitution (30 HPs) lends itself to being knocked out easily. Often you’ll find yourself inviting such an attack, as it’ll give you a quick and strong counter attack. Remember you benefit twice from your opponent KOing Wishi. The first is to allow Counter Energy to activate its full potential. And the second with Lucario’s attack becoming stronger due to the fewer bench pokemon.
But the last part of Fight Alone Lucario’s resurgence is the meta. Think about it for a second — just about every deck has a couple of supporter pokemon with attributes. Every strong deck has extra draw support which includes multiples of Tapu Lele, Zoroark GX, or Octillery. Each deck has a main attacker plus a secondary attacker. Then there are usually support cards like Regirock EX, Vikavolt, Giratina, Mr. Mime, etc. And 24 of the top 35 master decks in Memphis had Brigette.
So Fight Alone Lucario can put your opponent in an odd proposition. They can choose to power up their deck fully and suffer from Lucario’s wrath. Or forgo their deck’s normal plan of operations and play a slimmed down version. Either way works toward your advantage.
As for weakness, that is mostly a one-sided deal for this deck. Lucario’s metal type gives an advantage against Fairy (Gardevoir, Sylveon, Xerneas, etc.) decks. On the other hand most fire decks can easily generate 110 points of damage, so the reciprocal weakness isn’t as much of an issue.
In an odd way, it’s the older mature brother to Typhlosion, because it can beat any deck and lose to any deck. This is a difficult deck to face, but can also be unwieldy to play. You can easily lose a match because you’ve left your bench empty and underestimated your opponent’s ability to attack. If you like a good challenge, this is a great deck to play.