Ho-Oh by Autlaw
Pokémon 20th

Pokémon TCG Deck Profile: Ho-Oh Shines Bright Like a Diamond [UPDATED]

One of my all-time favorite Pokémon, Ho-Oh, finally gets a little spotlight thanks to the recent expansions in the TCG.

Building a deck around Ho-Oh-EX wasn’t easy – the card requires three different type of Energy, four if you want to use the recovery ability. This means that not only must the deck be well balanced in terms of creatures and trainers, but it also needs to have enough, yet not too much, water, fire, grass and lightning Energy.

Ho-Oh Ex

Pokémon – 11

  • 3x Ho-Oh-EX (BREAKpoint)
  • 2x Smeargle (BREAKthrough)
  • 3x Paras (BREAKthrough)
  • 3x Parasect (BREAKthrough)
  • 2x Shaymin-EX (Roaring Skies)


Energy – 16

  • 4x Basic Water
  • 4x Basic Fire
  • 4x Basic Lighting
  • 4x Basic Grass


Trainers – 31

  • 2x Ultra Ball
  • 4x Max Elixir
  • 4x Trainer’s Mail
  • 3x Evosoda
  • 3x Float Stone
  • 3x Professor Sycamore
  • 2x Energy Pouch
  • 2x Professor’s Letter
  • 2x Winona
  • 2x VS Seeker
  • 1x Fisherman
  • 1x Hex Maniac
  • 1x Lysandre
  • 1x N
  • 1x Super Rod


This deck is fairly easy to play, but does require a lot of Energy management. The sooner you can get a hold of what is in your deck – and not prized – the better you can prepare Ho-Oh. As early as possible, you will want to have Parasect as an active. His attack, Colorful Spores, requires but a single colorless Energy to attack. This move ensures that you can charge up as much Ho-Oh’s as possible, simultaneously, by searching the deck for any Energy you please and attaching it on your legendary. Since Ho-OH is a colorless-type, Parasect’s effect works in tune with the deck.

Once Ho-Oh is ready, simply switch out Parasect! Ho-Oh-EX’s base damage is 130 and deals 30 to the benched Pokémon of your choice. This can be useful in getting those EXs weak by the time they come on as active. Additionally, the damage is high enough to one-shot most creatures in the game, and two-shot any EX. The best part about Ho-Oh isn’t only his attack, but the fact that it can heal for a whopping 50 health points every turn, considering you have a basic Fire Energy set up. This is when Smeargle shines!

Using his unique effect, Smeargle, from the bench, is able to swap a basic Energy attached to the active Pokémon with one in the discard pile. This can be useful in tight situations where you don’t draw the proper Energy – simply attach any one to Ho-Oh, and use Smeargle’s ability to swap it with the one you need. Take notice that it has to be in the discard pile for the ability to work!


Play it the way you want!

Initially, the deck was played using a weird combination of support Pokémon. The first version featured Slowking – this deck would slow down the opponent’s momentum, while giving me more time to charge up Ho-OH-EX. The second variation would include Octillery. Regardless, the deck always ended up really fun to play.

Before reaching the version aforementioned above, an interesting variation featured Dodrio instead of the Float Stones. Since Dodrio was a colorless-type and dealt decent damage (depending on your luck), it was a great addition. However, its ability is where the deck was fearless. Dodrio ensured that your active creature’s retreat cost was two colorless less. Since the whole deck didn’t cost more, it would allow me to freely swap in and out any Ho-Oh’s and Dodrio that I wanted. The downside of this version was that it felt too slow, hence the addition of Shaymin-EX.


If you have any variation featuring Ho-Oh-EX you would love to share, feel free to do so in the comment section below! I am curious to see if anyone was able to make a fast and furious deck feature one of my favorite legendary of all time!

Which Pokémon would you support Ho-Oh with? Comment below!

Pokémon 20thPokemon TCG Features

Slimzz is a DJ & Gamer by night, IMGMR's Senior Editor and PR by day. He loves to break the meta in his own way, and discover new and engaging games.
One Comment
  • 21times
    26 May 2016 at 6:14 am
    Leave a Reply

    I love ho oh. I only run 2 though I use Gallade to counter Suicune Regice etc. I prefer Beautifly and Volcarona over Smeargle and Parasect. I am also trying to work in Empoleon since they are basics. I’d like to run an Arceus in this deck too but can’t ever get anyone to trade.

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