Almost everyone has heard of Pokemon in one way or a another. It all started in 1995 in Japan, which is when the Games and Anime  were first released, the Pokemon TCG later join Japan in 1996. It came to America on September 6, 1998 in the form of anAnime, the gameboy games join the scene on September 30, 1998, but we are here to talk about the card game which was released in America in January of 1999. There are many aspects to making a Pokemon TCG Deck and I am here to give you all the basic info you will need to create one.

The first thing you need to know is what cards are currently legal in Pokemon TCG tournaments. That would be HG/SS-on, what that means is any cards released after HeartGold/Soulsilver packs are legal! As I am writing this those card sets are:

  1. HeartGold & SoulSilver
  2. H/S: Unleashed
  3. H/S: Undaunted
  4. H/S: Triumphant
  5. Call of Legends
  6. Black and White
  7. B/W: Emerging Powers
  8. B/W: Noble Victories
  9. PUI Black Star Promos; Tropical Tidal Wave 027/036, HGSS01 and up, BW001 and up

1. Deck Concept -

The first thing you will need to do is come up with a deck concept, there are various ways you can do this; look at card scans on the net (that way you can buy the cards you need), look at already winning deck list on various Pokemon TCG websites, look through your binder, or throw all your cards in a barrel and pick a few out! Make sure you pick 1 focus, such as a Pokemon or a strategy you want to focus on.

2. Get your Pokemon lines set up! -

Once you have a deck concept you are going to need 60 cards in total. So now you need to look at what you picked, and figure out what will combo well with it. As an example if you pick Leafeon from undaunted/CoL (Call of legends), A great combo would be Roserade from Unleashed thanks to her poke-power that will let you apply 2 special conditions with 1 rainbow energy, thus letting you hit for 100 + 10 poison damage!

When setting up Pokemon lines you will want 3 or 4 of your main attacker and for stage 2's you will want a line that is 4-2-4 usually. What 4-2-4 means is 4 basics, 2 stage 1, 4 stage 2, and some Rare candies in your deck (3-4 is the best number any lower and you will not be consistent).

So after you have your main Pokemon lines you will need a starter/support Pokemon. In the last format there were a lot more starter Pokemon, this format however is usually just Cleffa and if you are lucky one of your basic will have a call for family attack like Eevee does. Most decks will have 18-24 Pokemon.

3. Get some Trainers so you don't fall behind! -

Now that you have your Pokemon lines set up you are going to want to get some Trainers. The most recent cards (black and white - on) are all label "Trainer" and sub-labeled "Trainer - Supporter". You will want around 6-10 draw supporters, depending if you have a built-in draw like Yanmega. You will need some Trainers such as; Pokemon catcher, Super Scoop up, Pokemon Communication. You will need some supporters such as; Pokemon collector, Seeker, Black belt, and as previously mentioned draw cards! Most decks will have 14-18 Trainer cards.

4. Energy is needed to power all aspects of life! -

Every deck is this format will need energy of some kind, even if it's just Rescue Energy. If you have multi-colored deck try and split the count and even add Rainbows if needed. A good energy card for recovery is Rescue Energy, as previously stated. There aren't too many Energy cards in this legal format, so most of the time you will just be using; grass, fire, ect with 4 special energies depending on what your deck is!

5. Test! -

I will cover this more in my next article, but the first thing you need to do right after you build a deck is test it and weed out immediate flaws you see such as; to many of 1 cards, combo not working, ect. Through testing you will get a deck that flows a lot better.

I hope this guide helped you, I will be releasing a more detailed guide for players with more skill in the future! Enjoy your time in the Pokemon Trading Card Game and get your friends to play :D!