Hi there Pokémon players! I’m very excited to be writing yet another article on the Gym Leader Challenge format today, however, I wanted to give a quick shout-out to everybody. I know that there are a few factors in play regarding COVID-19, however, I am hoping that in 2022 we will be able to see a brighter light as well as the beginning of the 2022 Pokémon season. The sky is really the limit in terms of the Gym Leader Challenge format with Andrew Mahone being one of the ringleaders behind this whole thing. After playing a tournament at my local league, I’ve come to realize how amazing this format really is, and how much vast depth that the format contains. I had so much fun playing around with all these single Prize Card Pokemon I couldn’t believe my eyes as to what I was seeing with this unique take on the Pokémon trading card game. I would even go as far as to say that I think that this should replace our standard format or at least supplement as an additional format in the real-life circuit in 2022. That being said, let’s chat about my experience with a Dark-type Gym Leader Challenge deck today!

I booted up my Pokemon Trading Card Game Online app, loaded up some PTCGO codes, and then traded those Pokemon online codes to trade for the decks in this article. I was very excited, and it honestly didn’t take that many PTCGO codes to make the decks. If you’re looking to buy some PTCGL codes, we sell them here on PTCGO Store, and I highly urge you to check out our competitive pricing and swift delivery! Let’s talk about Darkness-type in the Gym Leader Challenge format today.

Rules of the Gym Leader Challenge (GLC) Format:


  • Only one type of Pokemon can be included in your deck.
  • No Rule Box Pokemon; e.g. V, GX, EX, TAG TEAM, Prism Star, BREAK Pokemon
  • The format is Black & White on, meaning all cards in the Black & White block, XY block, Sun & Moon block, and finally the Sword and Shield block.
  • The regular Expanded bans do NOT apply, meaning you can play Chip Chip Ice Axe, Lt. Surge's Strategy, Forest of Giant Plants, and many more you wouldn't usually be able to play in the Expanded Format!
  • You can include Pokemon with Alpha traits as those are not considered Rule Boxes.
  • Lysandre’s Trump Card and Oranguru UPR are banned.
  • And finally, one of the most important rules, you cannot have more than one of every card in your deck except for Basic Energy, even if the cards have different attacks; same name, same card!

Strategy


Guzzlord

The main strategy of this deck is to use your speed to your advantage against other Pokemon online decks. Dark is full of many quick attackers who don’t require many energy to attack - in fact, most of them require a single Darkness or two Colourless Energy! We want to apply as much pressure as possible while also setting up our Guzzlord to take our six Prize Cards as quickly as possible. If we’re aggressive enough in the early game, our opponent will struggle to setup and combat our strategy. Even if we come up a little slow, we can mount a comeback with the opportunity to draw additional Prize Cards with Red Banquet (Guzzlord’s attack). With lots of damage buffs like MuscleBand and Dark Claw, we can always ensure we’re taking OHKOs. Let’s hop into the list so you can see what I mean!

Deck List


Pokémon - 15

1 Koffing SHF 41
1 Sneasel UPR 73
1 Weavile UPR 74
1 Galarian Zigzagoon SSH 117
1 Galarian Linoone SSH 118
1 Galarian Obstagoon CPA 37
1 Zorua LTR 89
1 Zoroark BKT 91
1 Zubat BST 89
1 Golbat BST 90
1 Crobat BST 91
1 Guzzlord CEC 136
1 Hoopa DAA 111
1 Spiritomb UNB 112

Trainer Cards - 36 

1 Ball Guy SHF 57 
1 Cynthia & Caitlin CEC 189 
1 Sonia CPA 65 
1 Professor's Research SHF 60
1 Piers CPA 58
1 Bruno BST 121
1 Marnie CPA 56 
1 Tate & Liza CES 148
1 Cynthia UPR 119 
1 センパイとコウハイPRC 141
1 Boss's Orders SHF 58
1 Guzma BUS 115 
1 N FCO 105 
1 Colress PLS 118 
1 Level Ball BST 129 
1 トレーナーズポスト ROS 92
1 Rescue Stretcher GRI 130 
1 Pokégear 3.0 SSH 174
1 Evolution Incense SSH 163 
1 Timer Ball SUM 134
1 Super Rod BKT 149 
1 Nest Ball SUM 123 
1 Town Map BKT 150
1 Special Charge STS 105
1 Scoop Up Net RCL 165 
1 VS Seeker PHF 109 
1 Great Ball CPA 52
1 Dark Patch DEX 93 
1 Quick Ball SSH 179 
1 Beast Ring FLI 102
1 Reset Stamp UNM 206
1 Dark Claw DEX 92
1 Air Balloon SSH 156 
1 Float Stone BKT 137
1 Muscle Band XY 121 
1 Devoured Field CIN 93

Energy - 9 

5 Darkness Energy 7
1 Double Colorless Energy SLG 69
1 Twin Energy RCL 174
1 Hiding Darkness Energy DAA 175
1 Triple Acceleration Energy UNB 190


Dark GLC Format decklist
Dark GLC Format decklist

Key TCG Cards


Guzzlord

1 Guzzlord - Guzzlord is the main attacker of our deck, and for a good reason: he is able to draw additional Prize Cards with his Red Banquet attack! Guzzlord needs four energies to power this attack up, however, we can get there with the help of Twin Energy, Double Colourless, Beast Ring, and Dark Patch. You only draw the extra Prize Card if you take a KO, so in order to help with damage, I’ve included Muscle Band, Dark Claw, and DevouredField. The HP on this Pokémon is high enough to dodge being OHKO’d by many threats in the GLC format. I’ve actually considered playing Cape of Toughness in this deck to help buff up Guzzlord (as well as Spiritomb), however, the utility past those Pokémon is pretty limited. Guzzlord also has another attack, Mountain Munch, which can help mill key cards off the top of the opponent’s deck. You should try to use this guy every game!

KoffingGalarian Weezing

1-1 Galarian Weezing - The Koffing makes a great starter for our deck because going second, it can use its Ascension attack to essentially prevent all abilities on our opponent’s side on their following turn. Being able to Poison the opponent can also be a big momentum swinger against high HP threats like Rillaboom or Swampert. 130 HP on Weezing also makes it difficult to KO while the opponent is under ability-lock.

1-1 Zoroark - Zoroark is so fun to play because it reminded me so much of when Yveltal/Zoroark/Gallade was a popular deck circa 2016. Similar to Koffing, our Zoruark has Ascension as well to evolve on your first turn going second. Zoroark has the utility of attacking four two Colourless, meaning we can use some of our special energy (including Triple Acceleration). Zoroark is great for taking cheap KOs and swinging momentum when the opponent benches too many Pokémon. The Stand Inability is also crazy with a Float Stone because it essentially gives all of your Pokémon free retreats.

Crobat

1-1-1 Crobat - This is essentially a consistency line that’s played to see more cards. Drawing additional cards is especially key while Beast Ring is live because sometimes you rely on that to win the game. Crobat also has a decent attack that can be buffed with a few cards in our deck.

1 Hoopa - This card is very aggressive in the early stages of the game, and can polish off big KOs in the late game. Hoopa can only be limited by the number of switching cards you play in your deck: this is because of Hoopa’s attack clause that you need to satisfy, otherwise, the attack does nothing. Being able to attack for one energy is crazy though, and this should be used in conjunction with Guzma and Lysandre when possible to score knockouts on key basic Pokémon.

1-1 Weavile - An accessible attacker that hits for one single Dark Energy, and can swing for big damage in the late game. This card is really effective against most archetypes, but mostly Grass and Water because of their massive reliance on abilities. The Sneasel is also a great starter going second to discard your opponent’s energy, especially if their deck isn’t playing heavy energy acceleration.

Spiritomb

1 Spiritomb - Agreat attacker for one energy that can be very aggressive in the early game with buffs, or sit on the bench until the late game to take big KOs on hefty Stage 2s.

1-1-1 Galarian Obstagoon - A hefty Stage 2 Pokémon that can take a hit. It takes a few turns to setup but the goal here is to have a Pokémon with solid HP. The ability is great in a singleton format because your opponent will have to discard multiple 1-ofs from hand. The Galarian Zigzagoon’s ability is also great for extra damage to get those OHKOs in.

Dark Specific Support

1 Dark Patch - An instant energy acceleration card that is insane in this deck. It’s almost always going to be live in the game and contributes to our speediness.
1 Dark Claw - Essentially an additional copy of Muscle Band to help us hit key numbers.
1 Beast Ring - Not a Dark exclusive card, however, it does contribute to our Ultra Beast, Guzzlord, which is a Dark Pokemon. Beast Ring is very strong when most opponents only take one Prize Card at a time.
1 Hiding Darkness Energy - An excellent mobility option for cards like Hoopa and Obstagoon. Creates a pivot for us.
1 Piers - A good search option for us to find key energy cards and advance our field.
1 Devoured Field - A neutral stadium that helps us hit key numbers. Good for bumping potent Stadiums like Dimension Valley and Forest of Giant Plants.

Draw Supporters

  • Cynthia
  • Professor’s Research
  • N
  • Marnie
  • Tate & Liza
  • Colress
  • Cynthia & Caitlin
  • Bruno
  • Teammates

Ball /Pokemon Search Cards

  • Quick Ball
  • Timer Ball
  • Great Ball
  • Level Ball
  • Nest Ball
  • Evolution Incense
  • Ball Guy
  • Sonia
  • Piers
These cards are all 1-of that will help us to find key Pokemon in our deck. They’re essential to having a strong board state and eventually getting our thin Pokemon lines up and running. Our wide variety of cards means we will have options for any occasion.

Gust Cards

  • Boss’ Orders
  • Guzma

Simple concept, very powerful. Especially when you know your opponent only can play 1-of in their deck, taking out threats on the opponent’s side is so important.

1 Super Rod – A vital card to recover Pokemon that are 1-ofs. Serves a similar purpose to Rescue Stretcher.
1 Twin Energy - Essentially a second copy of Double Colourless Energy, which helps satisfy many attack costs in our deck.
1 Triple Acceleration Energy - Kind of a third copy of Double Colourless Energy but can only be used once. I like to use this on Zoroark and Obstagoon.

Conclusion

This format is a labor of love from the people who love to play this game the most; every single match is just played in the spirit of Pokemon, and it really shows how creative people can get in the middle of a pandemic. I would suggest trying this format out with your friends and I’d consider trying out different types of Pokemon online decks (as well as different types of cards). The whole expanded format is your oyster, so choose your slots wisely! The decks discussed in this article require some new stuff from some new sets, as well as some old stuff from previous expanded expansions, so you should check out our shop for your PTCGO code needs. I’d suggest nabbing some PTCGL codes and building some GLC format Pokemon decks online because this format will only get more popular as more online tournaments are released for it. Until next time, have fun!

If you’re looking for codes for Pokemon TCG online play, feel free to pick some up in our shop. We offer Pokemon codes at a very competitive price and ensure instant delivery of your PTCGO codes directly to your email. Thank you for reading this article today on the PTCGO store! Have a great day.