With changing formats, power-creep, and an entirely new game, the 2021 – 2022 format is going to be pretty interesting in Pokemon TCG Online. We also have some older cards making a comeback, some of them actually being a part of the top decks. So much is changing, and with newer and more powerful cards altering the Pokemon TCG Online meta with every expansion, it can be difficult to figure out what the best decks in the game will be in 2022.
One card to rule them all
We didn’t really have this section in our list of the best Standard decks for 2021, but if I don’t add this one, the list is going to look ridiculous. The question: why is Inteleon in over half of these decks when its attack isn’t even that high?
Answer: Inteleon isn’t just good at spreading damage, it can actually fetch you some sweet Trainer cards whenever you want. No, none of these decks have Inteleon V from Rebel Clash, and not all of them are about spreading damage. The two Inteleon you see in the image above are actually splashable in any deck, and since a lot of newer VMAX cards need the right Trainer Cards to be successful, this strategy works just right. Even in decks like Dragapult-Inteleon where you are deliberately trying to spread damage, the second Inteleon works even better.
How do we rank the 10 best decks in Pokemon TCG Online?
Below is a list of the 10 best decks for the 2022 Standard format. Note that a lot of decks don’t have a Type advantage against one another and it can get difficult to rank them over the other. This list is not a strict tier list with one deck being better than the next one in ranks, but a list of the ten decks that have regularly done well in tournaments. We do have the definite meta decks at the top, the ones with the best win rates, and as you go down the list you’ll find decks that are still pretty strong and fare well in the in-game ladder but won’t necessarily win tournaments.
Here are 10 of the best Standard decks for Pokemon TCG Online in 2022:
Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX
Main Pokemon: Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX, but you can pair it with Alcremie VMAX as well.
What makes it great: The deck sets up pretty quickly and does damage based on the number of Psychic energy you have in play. You can also pair Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX with Alcremie VMAX for the G-Max Whisk attack. Horror Energy is still great for adding damage, and you have some great Trainer cards such as Fog Crystal to further make the deck more efficient.
Main Pokemon: Umbreon VMAX, Single Strike Urshifu VMAX.
What makes it great: Calyrex VMAX, one of the top decks in the format, is weak against Dark decks. If you pair Umbreon with Single Strike Urshifu VMAX, you also have a good fighting attacker that can counter other Dark decks such as Eternatus. Umbreon has great damage potential and it helps that it is also a Single Strike card and shares Energy and relevant Trainer cards.
Dragapult VMAX + Inteleon
Main Pokemon: Dragapult VMAX, Inteleon.
Deck Guide: Dragapult Inteleon deck guide
What makes it great: This deck is simple and consistent, and aims to spread damage using Dragapult VMAX’s Max Phantom attack and Inteleon’s Aqua Bullet and Quick Shooting attacks. You also have Horror Energy and Scoop Up (+Galarian Zigzagoon) to further add to that damage. Scoop Up can also be used to devolve your Inteleon and be able to use its Ability again.
Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX
Main Pokemon: Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX.
What makes it great: The 2021 rotation hasn’t really affected this deck. Being a newer card, Urshifu is still pretty good and pairs well with Medicham V and Inteleon. However, Urshifu is weak against Psychic, which makes it vulnerable to the popular Shadow Rider Calyrex VMAX.
Main Pokemon: Eternatus VMAX, Crobat V, Umbreon VMAX.
What makes it great: Eternatus VMAX decks have survived the 2021 Rotation because they don’t rely on Dedenne-GX, and Crobat V is still legal in Standard. Eternatus essentially makes your Bench larger and lets you do damage based on the number of Pokemon you have in play. You also have Umbreon VMAX as an addition to the deck, and Dark types are pretty good for the 2022 format to counter Shadow Rider Calyrex decks. Eternatus is certainly one of the best decks Pokemon TCG Online has ever had.
Leafeon VMAX + Inteleon
Main Pokemon: Leafeon VMAX, Inteleon.
Deck Guide: Leafeon VMAX and Inteleon.
What makes it great: Leafeon VMAX pairs well with the Galar Mine Stadium card which increases the Retreat Cost of both Pokemon, allowing Leafeon to do more damage with its Grass Knot. Leon and Inteleon can help you buff damage, but the deck is pretty straightforward and it helps to have Fire weakness in a meta where no one’s using Fire decks anymore.
Jolteon VMAX + Inteleon
Main Pokemon: Jolteon VMAX, Inteleon.
What makes it great: This deck uses Elemental Badge to lower the cost of Jolteon’s attacks, along with Path to the Peak to scrap off your opponent’s abilities. Max Thunder Rumble is great for spreading damage, which pairs well with Inteleon, Galarian Zigzagoon, and Scoop Up. You can also use Speed Lightning Energy to draw extra cards, and the deck’s only downside is that it is weak to Urshifu due to Type-disadvantage.
Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX
Main Pokemon: Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX.
What makes it great: Along with having great damage potential, Ice Rider Calyrex VMAX pairs well with Inteleon because of its typing. It isn’t as strong or consistent as Shadow Rider Calyrex, but it is still pretty good and fares well in tournaments.
Suicune V + Inteleon/Ludicolo
Main Pokemon: Suicune V, Inteleon and/or Lucicolo.
What makes it great: Suicune V is a great counter to Eternatus, and Melony can set it up quickly, with Ludicolo adding damage. Suicune being a 2-Prizer helps this deck a lot, and you’ll be getting some easy VMAX knock-outs with it once you get your Ludicolo set up.
Main Pokemon: Sylveon VMAX, Blaziken VMAX, Octillery, Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX.
What makes it great: This deck doesn’t hard-counter anything in the meta, but it is pretty strong, with a solid Octillery engine and the Early Dream Gifts setup. Sylveon VMAX’s Max Harmony benefits from having multiple types of Pokemon, so the card was meant to be used in a deck with variety. It is more of a toolbox deck that can do well against the right matchups, but suffers from having too many options and won’t always be as consistent as other Eeveelution or Inteleon-based decks.
Welcome to the reign of Inteleon, a card the meta had dismissed in the 2020/21 format. Compared to last year’s list of the best decks in Pokemon TCG Online, this one is far more balanced, interesting, and has a good variety of cards. If, a year ago, I had predicted a Stage 2, non-V/VMAX/GX-card to be one of the top cards in 2022, you would have called me crazy. Honestly? I’ll take it. Anything is better than the overpowered cards from last year, and I’m sure most of us are glad that ADP/Z is behind us.