May 29, 2023

How To Play The Arceus VSTAR Deck In The Pokemon TCG


Everyone will remember the Sword and Shield era of the Pokemon TCG as the one that had the best decks ever. Nonetheless, the thing with all the top decks of this era, like The Lost Zone Toolbox, Mew VMAX, or Urshifu Rapid Strike VMAX, is that they are very complicated and situational.

Related: Pokemon TCG: What Are VSTAR Cards?

But then, out of nowhere, The God of All Pokemon broke into the metagame. Thanks to its versatility, simple yet effective mechanics, and ability to work like a charm with any decent offensive card strategy, Arceus VSTAR is a dangerous threat, and everyone has to be aware of them.

Updated May 22, 2023, by Jesús Cruz: Every time Pokemon enters a new Generation, the TCG also does, changing the rotation of the standard cards and rotating out many old cards and mechanics to change them for new ones. Most of the things you’ve seen during the latest stages of the Sword and Shield era are still with us, but older cards like the whole Shady Dealings engine, the Quick Ball, the Scoop Up Net, and the Evolution Incense are now out of the rotation, which means that every deck has to change its strategy and resources. Don’t worry, though, the decks you know and love are still usable, but they’ll have several changes, and you’ll have to adapt a bit to them.


Arceus VSTAR Changes For Scarlet & Violet

The main companion of Arceus VSTAR, Inteleon, is gone. This means Arceus has to rely again on other teammates, which changes the style of playing this deck.

Even though Arceus VSTAR is still the protagonist, and the main card of the deck, this time, it’ll need some help to face the common problems of the Scarlet & Violet meta. That’s why you’ll commonly see Arceus accompanied by Umbreon VMAX and Duraludon VMAX. They can cover almost any difficulty you can find out there.

Arceus VSTAR Decklist

Pokemon TCG Choice Belt card (1)

Pokemon Cards

Arceus V BRS (x4)

Arceus VSTAR BRS (x3)

Duraludon V EVS (x2)

Duraludon VMAX EVS (x2)

Umbreon V EVS (x1)

Umbreon VMAX EVS (x1)

Lumineon V BRS (x1)

Radiant Alakazam SIT (x1)

Energy Cards

Water Energy (x2)

Double Turbo Energy (x4)

Steel Energy (x4)

Fighting Energy (x3)

Trainer Cards

Boss Orders RCL (x3)

Colress’ Experiment LOR (x3)

Judge SVI (x3)

Karen’s Conviction CRE (x1)

Professor’s Research SVI (x4)

Choice Belt ASR (x1)

Escape Rope BUS (x1)

Nest Ball SVI (x4)

Switch SVI (x2)

Ultra Ball SVI (x4)

Lost City LOR (x3)

Arceus VSTAR Deck Key Cards

Pokemon TCG Escape Rope Card

Let’s take a look at all the most important cards in this deck.

Arceus VSTAR

Pokemon TCG Arceus VSTAR card

The face of this deck is Arceus VSTAR. The best thing about it is that you can mix it with almost every card and strategy available in the metagame. This time, Arceus VSTAR will be around important cards like Alolan Vulpix VSTAR and Duraludon VMAX, working as the main damage dealer in a standard situation.

Arceus will deal 200 damage every turn with its attack, Trinity Nova. This attack is excellent as it lets you pick and attach up to three basic energies to any other V Pokemon, which works to prepare another Arceus VSTAR on your bench while attacking.

Arceus VSTAR’s ability, Starbirth, will also help you to set it up to attack in your second turn, as Starbirth will let you look for two cards in your deck. With this ability, you can look for a Double Turbo Energy and another card that can help you in the early game, such as Boss’ Orders to start claiming Prize Cards as soon as possible.

Duraludon VMAX

Duraludon VMAX Crown Zenith card

Duraludon V and Duraludon VMAX are in this deck, as they will be in charge of tanking the damage of high-damage decks and decks that use Special Energy cards, such as Lugia VSTAR, Eternatus VMAX, or a mirror match against Arceus.

Duraludon has an ability named Skyscraper, which prevents all the damage done by Pokemon that has Special Energy cards attached to them.

On top of that, Duraludon VMAX can deal a very decent 220 damage with its G-Max Pulverization, which also ignores any extra effects that reduce damage on the target. In short, it’ll always deal 220 damage or more, depending on if you attach a Choice Belt on Duraludon.

Umbreon VMAX

Umbreon VMAX (Evolving Skies #215) card

At first sight, Umbreon VMAX doesn’t seem like a reliable option to be the offensive powerhouse of this deck. Duraludon will be in charge of doing the dirty job, but Umbreon will come in very handy in cases when you are playing against Gardevoir ex or Mew VMAX.

Aside from being a Dark-type, which gives it extra damage against those two decks, Umbreon VMAX has a great ability named Dark Signal, which if you use Umbreon VMAX from your hand to evolve Umbreon V, you can force your opponent to switch their active Pokemon for any other in their bench.

Basically, you have a free Boss Orders whenever you want. It’s great in case you want to focus on the benched Pokemon, or if you want to get rid of the active Pokemon of your opponent.

Double Turbo Energy

Pokemon TCG Double Turbo Energy Rare Secret Card card

Double Turbo Energy is vital for this strategy, as it gives two colorless energies to the Pokemon attached to it. You must find and attach it to Arceus VSTAR as soon as possible.

Of course, this card has a notorious drawback, as it makes Arceus deal 180 of damage instead of 200, but as an exchange, you can potentially start to attack in your second turn, before your opponent has had time to really set up their board, which is priceless.

Colress’ Experiment and Lost City

Colress's Experiment Galarian Gallery card from Pokemon TCG

Even though you’ll not be using Lost Zone in this deck, both Colress’ Experiment and Lost City are very useful in this deck, and for various reasons.

Colress’ Experiment will be an easy way to draw cards from your deck to your hand. This is very useful as you’ll not have many options to keep the card flow going except for top decking and Lumineon V.

On the other hand, Lost City is a great Stadium to negate any strategy with Miriam, a card that can revive Pokemon that gets defeated and goes to the Discard Pile. With Lost City, if a player gets a Pokemon defeated, it’ll go to the Lost Zone instead of going to the Discard Pile.


Pokemon TCG Judge

You’ll have to get used to seeing Judge in several decks, as it’s excellent to get rid of those players with decks that involve having a lot of cards in their hands.

With Judge, each player has to send their cards to the deck and draw four cards. It’s ideal for when you are stuck and when your opponent has 10 or more cards in their hand.

Karen’s Conviction

Pokemon TCG Karen's Conviction card

With Karen’s Conviction, during a turn, all the Single Strike cards (like Duraludon and Umbreon) will deal 20 more damage per each Prize Card your opponent has taken.

It’s very important to use this card when things are getting difficult and your opponent has taken several Prize Cards, so you can turn the match in your favor.

Arceus VSTAR Strategy

Pokemon TCG Arceus VSTAR Secret Rare

It’s important to always try to go first. Otherwise, it’ll be very hard to win a match, as this deck heavily depends on attacking in the first few turns.

The first turn will be focused on studying your opponent’s deck to draw the cards you need. If you are facing a Mew VMAX or a Gardevoir ex deck, then you’ll have to focus on drawing Arceus and Umbreon. Otherwise, go for Arceus and Duraludon.

Try first to look for Arceus VSTAR. You can do it by using Ultra Balls if you find one. It can help you look for Duraludon or Umbreon with its VSTAR Power.

As you have found all the cards, the rest will be very simple; suit them up with Energy cards, so they are ready to attack, and try to suit Arceus VSTAR with Double Turbo Energy.

Don’t hesitate on using Lost City if your opponent is trying to get an advantage from Stadium cards, and use Judge if you want to get rid of your opponent’s cards.

The setup is very simple, that’s why you have to be able to make it in a single turn to start attacking in turn two. Also, you have good resources to avoid getting hit and heal your Pokemon a bit, thanks to Radiant Alakazam, Boss Orders, Escape Rope, and Switch.

Arceus VSTAR’s Common Threats

Pokemon TCG Klefki Mischievous Lock Card

This deck will have several problems if it doesn’t start first, as it doesn’t have a very reliable way to counter strategies if it doesn’t outpace them. If you don’t attack since the second turn, you’ll fall behind.

Other than that, this deck can face the most common threats out there, like Lost Box, Lugia, or Gardevoir. It’s just a matter of setting up as soon as possible and then attacking. Even cards that focus on blocking abilities will have a bad time against this deck, as Duraludon is more than capable of sweeping those Klefki and Galarian Weezing cards without sweating.

NEXT: TCG Release Dates 2023

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