A Prehistoric Strategy: Raging Bolt ex | Pokémon

A warm welcome from the Past! This is your resident Pokémon TCG writer, Zach Lesage, and I’m here to share my thoughts on one of the new Ancient Pokémon TCG archetypes available since the release of Scarlet and Violet: Temporal Forces! This deck is Raging Bolt ex [Temporal Forces] / Sandy Shocks ex [Paradox Rift], and it is honestly one of the most fun decks I’ve ever had the chance to play! The deck utilizes the powerful Professor Sada’s Vitality [Paradox Rift] Supporter that accelerates Energy, and unleashes those energies with Raging Bolt ex’s Bellowing Thunder attack!

Sandy Shocks ex is one of the support Pokémon that allows you to get Energy back from the discard pile, and that gives Raging Bolt ex more opportunities to explode with power in the mid to late game! While this deck likely won’t see as much play as Charizard ex [Obsidian Flames] at major events, and I truly believe this is one of the most underrated decks in our Standard Pokémon TCG metagame! I’ll be covering my decklist, strategy, key cards, and more, so let’s jump into this Ancient archetype!

Raging Bolt ex / Sandy Shocks ex Decklist | Pokémon

It is quite disappointing to see this deck not receiving the respect it deserves from online tournaments, but I have faith that someone will crack the code on Raging Bolt ex archetypes, and maybe that person is me. The most successful lists are as simple as Raging Bolt ex and Sandy Shocks ex, but I personally like adding Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR [Astral Radiance] into the mix too!

Similarly to successful Gholdengo ex [Paradox Rift] variants, having the option to attack with Radiant Greninja [Astral Radiance] can be quite powerful! I’ll explain more about Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR in the Key Cards section of this article, but let’s check out my list first!

This text version of the decklist is importable to Pokémon TCG Live by copying it, and selecting import when creating a new deck online:

Pokémon (14)

2 Origin Forme Palkia V ASR 39
3 Raging Bolt ex TEF 123
1 Slither Wing PAR 107
3 Sandy Shocks ex PAR 108
1 Mew ex MEW 151
2 Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR ASR 40
1 Radiant Greninja ASR 46
1 Squawkabilly ex PAL 169

Energy (12)

4 Basic {W} Energy SVE 3
5 Basic {F} Energy SVE 6
3 Basic {L} Energy SVE 4

Trainer (34)

1 Hisuian Heavy Ball ASR 146
2 Energy Switch SVI 173
2 Irida ASR 147
1 Prime Catcher TEF 157
2 Pokégear 3.0 SVI 186
1 Pal Pad SVI 182
4 Nest Ball SVI 181
1 Boss's Orders PAL 172
4 Professor Sada's Vitality PAR 170
2 Super Rod PAL 188
1 Lost Vacuum CRZ 135
1 Collapsed Stadium BRS 137
1 Iono PAF 80
4 Ultra Ball SVI 196
2 Switch SVI 194
1 Canceling Cologne ASR 136
4 Earthen Vessel PAR 163
I love how the Turquoise Katana Sleeves match the blue accent that Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR and Water Energy bring to this deck! I’ve recently ordered a case of those sleeves, and they have been shuffling great! Check them out here!

Raging Bolt ex / Sandy Shocks ex Deck: The Strategy and Key Cards | Pokémon

In most cases, we want to go second with this deck because we can get a few Energy in our discard pile, accelerate them with Professor Sada’s Vitality, attach for turn, and attack with Raging Bolt ex on our first turn of the game. As we progress through the game, we want to strategically take out two Prize Card Pokémon with Bellowing Thunder or utilize one of our single Prize Card attackers, like Slither Wing [Paradox Rift] or Radiant Greninja, to draw two Prizes to offset the Prize Card trade.

If that doesn’t happen, the game is going to come down to who can go 2/2/2 on Prize Cards first. As the game progresses, we can use Sandy Shocks ex to accelerate more Energy to the field to give Raging Bolt ex a little bit more stability. We also have Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR as both a back-up attacker, and as a way to send three more Energy into play! Focus up on those Knock Outs, and really ramp those Energy in play to victory!

Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR: In a traditional build of Raging Bolt ex / Sandy Shocks ex, you can only accelerate Energy with Professor Sada’s Vitality, and Sandy Shocks ex. Sandy Shocks ex is limited only to the mid-to-late game because your opponent will have to have drawn a couple Prize Cards to activate it, so Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR gives us a light answer to accelerating more Energy into play. On top of that, you can accelerate those Water Energy to Radiant Greninja for a unique 90/90 snipe on two of your opponent’s Pokémon to hopefully score two Prize Cards! Having an additional type advantage in any deck can certainly be helpful from time-to-time, and the stability of attacking with Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR shouldn’t be overlooked either.

Slither Wing: Slither Wing is a card that I overlooked when originally building this deck, but I have since found it as an asset to improve my matchup against decks that consist of primarily single Prize Card Pokémon. Additionally, it allows us to have an answer to Iron Hands ex [Paradox Rift] which has become increasingly popular in the Post Rotation metagame, and I’ll take yet another type advantage. Sure, Sandy Shocks ex can attack too, but most games are out of control by that point if you are facing against a deck that is drawing additional Prize Cards per attack!

Do you need a new deck box to protect your Raging Bolt ex / Sandy Shocks ex deck? The new Bahia Green Floral Places Sidewinder 100+ matches the Lightning Energy included in this deck, and is a stunning choice to feature your brand new deck! Learn more about it here.

Raging Bolt ex / Sandy Shocks ex Deck: Prehistoric Testing | Pokémon

Well, I’m off to London, UK to play in the 2024 European International Championships, and this is one of the decks that I’m gonna have to convince myself not to play! While it certainly can win against some of the expected archetypes at EUIC, I’m a little hesitant to play it because it isn’t as refined as other top decks, like Chien-Pao ex [Paldea Evolved] / Baxcalibur [Paldea Evolved]. Maybe we’ll see this deck pop off like Iron Valiant ex [Paradox Rift] / Entei V [Brilliant Stars] did at the 2024 Latin American International Championships.

Since most of the top decks in our Post Rotation metagame are very similar to their previously established E-block on versions, I’m going to use my time to test the newer archetypes in the metagame to see if I can get ahead of the competition on developing the lists! Even though I am nonstop testing for the final few major events in our 2024 Pokémon TCG season, I’ll still have enough time to keep up with a few Ultimate Guard articles per month to keep our community up-to-date on everything that is going on! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this article, and I can’t wait to share my ideas with you for my next blog! Thanks for reading, and I hope to meet many readers at future events.

Autor: Zach Lesage

Zach Lesage is a contributing writer for Ultimate Guard. As a Toronto local, he has been playing the Pokémon Trading Card Game since 2005 and creates Pokémon content as his full time career. With multiple prestigious accomplishments in the game, such as 2020 Players Cup 2 Champion and 2020 Oceania International Championships Finalist, he has proven his success in the game. Outside of the game, he travels the world, enjoys the culture of designer streetwear, and is a professionally trained chef. You can catch him at most Pokémon events and follow him on Twitter.