Neo Fights is a new article series on The Warp Point that aims to show players new to the Pokemon TCG what they need to know.
New to the game? Returning to the game after a long absence? You're definitely going to need a new deck! But what to do? Follow these simple steps and you'll be well on your way to becoming a Pokemon TCG master!
Step 1: Buy Theme Decks. 3-4 theme decks will give you a good assortment of Pokemon, Trainer cards, and Energy to start with. Try to get decks with several different Energy types - e. g. both theme decks from HS: Unleashed (Grass/Fighting/Steel and Darkness/Fighting/Psychic respectively), the Stormshaper theme deck from Arceus (Psychic/Electric), and the Ember Spark deck from HeartGold/SoulSilver (Fire/Electric). The HS: Undaunted decks (and, presumably, any future sets' theme decks) contain an extra booster pack, making them a hot commodity for beginners and masters alike.
Step 2: Buy Tins. Aim for tins that have Pokemon Lv. X (Regigigas, Heatran, Giratina, Shaymin, Arceus) or Pokemon Prime (Typhlosion, Feraligatr, Meganium) that have counterparts in theme decks. This will make your theme deck-inspired decks that much stronger. The booster packs are an added bonus.
Step 3: Buy Booster Packs. The more, the merrier (within reason). If your budget allows, buy an entire booster box. Don't buy packs that aren't Modified-legal.
Step 4: Organize Your Stuff. Get yourself a binder or two and put your rares and foils in them. A 4-pocket binder is perfect for this purpose. Your commons, uncommons, and Energy cards should go into a separate box.
Step 5: Trade. Write down a list of cards you need for your deck and put it in your trade binder. Trade only for those cards.
Step 6: Go To Leagues. A lot. You can earn promo cards simply by playing the game, including staple Trainer cards. Leagues also give you a chance to look at the season's hot decks, seek out new and interesting combos, and generally have a good time. Check pokemon.com for a League (or Leagues) near you.
Step 7: ???
Step 8: Profit!
Thanks to Rogue Archetype for coming up with the original list of suggestions on the PokeGym!