[Top 10] Pokemon TCG Best Dragon Decks That Wreck Hard!

Pokemon TCG Best Dragon Decks
"I am Dragon, hear me roar."

1) Arceus, Dialga, and Palkia (tag team)

In 2020, the dynamite combo of “APD” + Zacian V came to be known as “ADP/Z.” Many fans hate it so much because they think it’s overpowered and too linear. Since 2020, ADP/Z haters have been calling for a ban (which rarely happens in Standard) or errata, though neither is likely.

Love it or hate it, ADP/Z produces results, especially in Standard. Expanded gives your foes the option to counter ADP/Z with the now-discontinued Ranger card. Another possible obstacle you should be aware of: some (unofficial) tournaments do ban ADP/Z due to how much other players hate the combo. For example: Limitless Tournament in January 2021.

How to play this deck

  • Some decks require patience and need you to wait until you’re on your last legs to unleash your big attack. ADP/Z is the opposite: the first few turns are the most crucial. If you can, attack first, unless your enemy is playing the Welder card.
  • Attach two Metal and Water cards (KEEP IN MIND that it has to be two opposing Energy cards; it can’t be two Metal or two Water, it has to be ONE Metal and ONE Water) to ADP within the first two turns. Within those first two turns, you should set off ADP’s Altered Creation GX.
  • Use Ultimate Ray. Altered Creation GX ramps up its already massive 150 damage to 180.
  • Your Zacian and Zamazenta will finish off the job. Or, if you don’t feel like using the typical Zacian (and prefer a greater challenge than the nearly invincible ADP/Z lineup), try Medicham instead.
  • Mawile is a popular Support Pokémon for this deck, because you can use it to wipe the floor with your enemy’s Crobat or Dedenne.
  • Although a Water-type Support Pokémon isn’t necessary, it’s worth having one on your deck in case you run into popular Fire types like Centiskorch. This is if you’re playing ADP/Z, because Zacian has a weakness to Fire. Use Milotic V or Wishiwashi GX to extinguish those pesky Fire types. If you don’t have a Water type, you can add a Metal Frying Pan card for your Zacian’s type weakness in Expanded. (Metal Frying Pan is still Standard-legal in Japan, but not internationally.)

What’s so great about this deck?

  • You get so few chances in TCG to literally change the game. Altered Creation GX is probably the best GX move in the game for this very reason: it messes with the game’s rules, to your advantage. Pair this with Zacian V, TCG’s strongest two-prize attacker, and you have the best deck in your hands. 
  • Even if you don’t play with Zacian, you’re likely playing with a team comprising some of TCG’s most consistent ‘mons like Oranguru. (However, we really do recommend Zacian.)
  • ADP and Zacian V flawlessly complement each other.
  • The ADP/Z technique (use Altered Creation GX then let Zacian finish the job) is much more simple and efficient than, say, PikaRom’s Full Blitz.
  • Zacian’s type weakness can be reduced with cards like Metal Frying Pan. ADP’s type weakness, Fairy, has been discontinued. Zacian itself can easily take down the few Fairy types still seeing action.

Sample list for your Arceus, Dialga, and Palkia (tag team) deck:

  • 1 Aegislash V
  • 1 Eldegoss V
  • 1 Mawile GX
  • 1 Milotic V or 1 Wishiwashi GX or 1 Metal Frying Pan
  • 1 Oranguru
  • 1 Zamazenta V
  • 2 Air Balloon
  • 2 Arceus, Dialga, and Palkia GX
  • 2 Big Charm
  • 2 Chaotic Swell
  • 2 Cherish Ball
  • 2 Crobat V
  • 2 Dedenne GX
  • 2 Metal Saucer
  • 3 Water Energy
  • 2 Marnie
  • 2 Viridian Forest
  • 3 Boss’s Orders
  • 3 Energy Switch
  • 4 Galarian Zigzagoon
  • 4 Professor’s Research
  • 4 Zacian V
  • 8 Metal Energy

2) Charizard (Vivid Voltage) 

There are two decks bearing Charizard here, mostly because Pokémon loves releasing so many Charizard cards. Even though Charizard is a famed and recognizable ‘mon, with endless cards to choose from, it hasn’t really joined the canon of “great” TCG decks, beyond the prized Relentless Flame in Themed. But some of its decks are promising! We shall take a look at Vivid Voltage’s Charizard now. (Vivid Voltage is one of the most recent card sets, released in November 2020.)

Galar’s Dragon Champion, Leon, will feature heavily in your Vivid Voltage Charizard games. The reason is that each Leon card in your pile adds a whopping +50 damage to your Charizard’s attack! That’s pretty crazy, especially because Charizard and Leon are  sold together in theme decks.

On the official Pokémon website, Ellis Longhurst provided tips and a sample deck for Vivid Voltage Charizard. Let’s read her tips and sample.

How to play this deck

  • So you can use Royal Blaze, use Welder to generate the Fire Energy you need.
  • Utilize Oranguru’s Primate Wisdom, alongside Charizard’s Battle Sense, to discard Leon without having to play it as your Supporter.
  • Remember to conserve and recycle your cards with Fire Crystal and Ordinary Rod! 

What’s so great about this deck?

  • Although its moves are often not enough to one-hit KO enemies alone, Vivid Voltage Charizard is a stunning improvement from past Charizard decks. Combined with the right Support, it could KO your enemies fast, if not instantly.
  • The core deck is quite easy to build; you’ll probably be able to buy the most important bits (the Charizard and Leon cards) in a single box.

Sample list for your Vivid Voltage Charizard deck:

  • 1 Boss’s Orders
  • 1 Eldegoss V
  • 1 Fire Crystal
  • 1 Talonflame
  • 1 Tool Scrapper
  • 1 Oranguru
  • 1 Oricorio-GX 
  • 2 Charmeleon
  • 2 Evolution Incense
  • 2 Giant Hearth
  • 2 Pokémon Communication
  • 2 Professor’s Research
  • 3 Jirachi
  • 4 Charizard
  • 4 Charmander
  • 4 Leon
  • 4 Ordinary Rod
  • 4 Quick Ball
  • 4 Rare Candy
  • 4 Switch
  • 4 Welder
  • 10 Fire Energy

3) Charizard and Reshiram GX (tag team)


ADP/Z’s reign over Standard Format shows that multiple dragons in a single card are better than one. Charizard and Reshiram (“ReshiZard”) provide another such combo. Some consider the combo outdated, and the latest card’s a little less recent than the Vivid Voltage set. However, it’s among 2021’s fastest-rising decks, oozing with potential. Don’t count it out! 

How to play this deck

  • Ramp up your ReshiZard with Energy from Volcanion’s Flare Starter move.
  • Welder, as always, will be great at accelerating your Fire Pokémon’s Energy.
  • Attack with Outrage and Double Blaze GX. 

What’s so great about this deck?

  • ReshiZard’s attacks are robust and aggressive.


Sample deck list for your Charizard and Reshiram (tag team) deck:

  • 1 Crobat V
  • 1 Galarian Zigzagoon
  • 1 Guzma
  • 1 Tapu Lele GX
  • 2 Blacephalon
  • 2 Cramorant V
  • 2 Dedenne GX
  • 2 Fire Crystal
  • 2 Max Elixir
  • 2 Pokégear 3.0
  • 3 Charizard and Reshiram GX
  • 4 Giant Hearth
  • 4 Jirachi
  • 4 Scoop Up Net
  • 4 Switch
  • 4 Quick Ball
  • 4 Volcanion
  • 4 Welder
  • 13 Heat Energy

4) Dragapult VMAX

The popularity of flashier dragons like Eternatus VMAX eclipsed the ever reliable Dragapult’s. But in the last few months, Dragapult VMAX has been enjoying a fresh wave of success — recently leading a handful of top-ranking plays — so maybe you should give this sturdy Pokémon a chance too! There are many angles and combinations you can use for Dragapult VMAX across all Formats (sans Legacy). However, for the sample below, we’ll look at the “Cat-apult” combo, which is now garnering attention among TCG players. This charming list got its name because it pairs adorable cat ‘mons like Espurr and Persian with Dragapult.

How to play this deck

  • Attach two Psychic Energy to your Dragapult.
  • Use Max Phantom.
  • Utilize your Espurr’s Ear Kinesis. Although normally, this would be an expensive move, your Persian’s Gathering of Cats Ability allows your Espurr (and other feline ‘mons with Caturday on their cards) to use it for free. Max Phantom uses damage counters, so the damage Ear Kinesis deals against your opponent’s Benched will be hefty.

What's so great about this deck?

  • Dragapult VMAX is hard to KO in one turn. 160 to 200 HP is already solid, so 320 is amazing.
  • Dragapult’s only weakness is Dark type. Even Dark types like Spiritomb greatly suffer under Dragapult’s Max Phantom attack.
  • Max Phantom, Dragapult’s best attack, requires merely 2 Psychic energy.
  • Max Phantom places damage, rather than doing direct damage. That’s awesome against Pokémon like Mew and its Bench Barrier, which otherwise stops you from inflicting damage on your enemy’s Benched Pokémon.


Sample desk list for your Dragapult VMAX deck: 

  • 1 Crobat V
  • 1 Dedenne
  • 1 Chaotic Swell
  • 1 Energy Spinner
  • 1 Espurr
  • 1 Galarian Zigzagoon
  • 1 Mewtwo
  • 1 Phione
  • 2 Boss’s Orders
  • 2 Meowth
  • 2 Persian
  • 2 Reset Stamp
  • 3 Dragapult VMAX
  • 3 Jirachi
  • 4 Dragapult V
  • 4 Horror Psychic Energy
  • 4 Marnie
  • 4 Pokémon Communications
  • 4 Professor Juniper
  • 5 Psychic Energy
  • 4 Quick Ball
  • 4 Scoop Up Net
  • 4 Switch

5) Eternatus VMAX 

Eternatus VMAX’s Ability lets you bench 8 Dark types instead of the regular 5 support ‘mons. That alone should tell you how formidable it is. Though assembling a mix of Poison and Dark types is also a valid and viable option for Eternatus VMAX, here we’ll be going through a scenario where we take advantage of its Dark-focused Ability.

How to play this deck

  • Stock your team up with Dark-type Pokémon to boost your Eternatus VMAX’s attack.
  • Make sure to attach the Capture Energy to your Eternatus VMAX to obtain Colorless Energy. Your Eternatus needs both Dark and Colorless Energy.
  • Your first Hoopa should be from Unified Minds. It does 10 to 20 damage for each Ability your opponent’s Pokémon has. Your other two Hoopa, from Darkness Ablaze, can deal 90 damage with Assault Gate — but you’d have to use Assault Gate in the same turn you move them from Benched to Active status.
  • Take advantage of your Eternatus V’s Power Accelerator! If you do, you can start your Eternatus VMAX’s crazy powerful rampage as early as the second turn.

What’s so great about this deck?

  • Being a VMAX, Eternatus VMAX obviously has an excellent HP.
  • In case you missed it: you can Bench eight Pokémon instead of five! (As long as they’re Dark types.)
  • Simply put, Eternatus VMAX is insanely strong. If your deck only consists of Dark-type Pokémon, then you can achieve 270-300+ damage in a single attack!
  • Eternatus VMAX can give even the most fearsome decks in the game, such as ADP/Z, a run for their money. (And it has done so, many times.)

Sample deck list for your Eternatus VMAX deck:


  • 1 Air Balloon
  • 1 Black Market
  • 1 Escape Rope
  • 1 Pal Pad
  • 1 Phoebe
  • 1 Piers
  • 1 Spiritomb
  • 2 Capture Energy
  • 2 Switch
  • 3 Boss’s Orders
  • 3 Galarian Zigzagoon
  • 3 Hiding Darkness Energy
  • 3 Hoopa
  • 3 Marnie
  • 3 Scoop Up Net
  • 4 Crobat V
  • 4 Crushing Hammer
  • 4 Eternatus V
  • 4 Eternatus VMAX
  • 4 Great Ball
  • 4 Quick Ball
  • 8 Darkness Energy  

6) Garchomp & Giratina GX

 “TinaChomp” is no longer as much of a buzz word as “PikaRom” or “ADP/Z,” yet it’s a speedy powerhouse that you shouldn’t really forget any time soon.

How to play this deck

  • Don’t let out your TinaChomp yet. Bench it first, then send out your Tapu Koko or Tapu Lele to stall. Then, attach one Energy to TinaChomp.
  • Add some damage counters to your opponent’s Pokémon. Unsurprisingly, poison provides solid ways to place damage — whether it’s through your Roxie discarding a Poison-type ‘mon like Koffing, or using that sweet ole Hypnotoxic Laser.
  • Attack!

What’s so great about this deck? 

  • TinaChomp does not have as many known weaknesses as, say, the reigning ADP/Z or PikaRom.
  • Garchomp and Giratina are incredibly strong and fast; their companions in this deck are also incredibly strong and fast.


Sample list for your Garchomp & Giratina deck:

  • 2 Garchomp and Giratina GX
  • 1 Nagadanel and Guzzlord
  • 2 Exeggcute
  • 2 Dedenne
  • 2 Koffing
  • 1 Noivern GX
  • 2 Chaotic Swell
  • 1 Rescue Stretcher
  • 2 Galarian Zigzagoon
  • 4 Marnie
  • 1 Tapu Lele
  • 1 Tapu Koko
  • 2 Scoop Up Net
  • 4 Double Dragon Energy
  • 3 Lightning Energy
  • 2 Float Stone
  • 4 Quick Ball
  • 2 Roxie
  • 2 Scoop Up Net
  • 2 Muscle Band
  • 1 Hypnotoxic Laser
  • 1 Field Blower
  • 1 N
  • 1 Professor’s Search
  • 4 Trainer’s Mail
  • 4 Battle Compressor
  • 4 VS Seeker

7) Latios EX

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. However, this deck shows that maybe it’s better to stick with an old Latios’ old tricks. Recently, Latios EX has been smashing opponents in Expanded with a “donk” deck (donk meaning one-hit KO), much as it has done in past years. Find out how you can donk your enemies with Latios EX below.

How to play this deck

  • Via Galarian Zigzagoon’s Headbutt Tantrum, place damage on your enemy’s Pokémon.
  • This is an extremely effective combination with Shaymin’s Set Up. You can and should use Scoop Up Net for both Zigzagoon and Shaymin.
  • Exploit the enemy Pokémon’s type weaknesses using any of your Pokémon, including of course Latios EX. Donking them will be easy if you harness Shaymin and Zigzagoon.

What’s so great about this deck?

  • Who doesn’t like bulldozing and speed-running through their enemies?
  • Though it’s hit-and-miss, meaning that each iteration will have varying levels of success, that means you’ll get to have fun being creative with your deck. This is a deck built on sheer entertainment, unlike the typical meticulous, competitive deck.

Sample deck list for your Latios EX deck:

  • 4 Shaymin
  • 4 Galarian Zigzagoon
  • 3 Latios EX
  • 1 Mewtwo & Mew
  • 1 Pheromosa
  • 4 Acro Bike
  • 2 Bicycle
  • 1 Computer Search
  • 2 Hypertoxic Laser
  • 4 PlusPower
  • 2 Roller Skates
  • 1 Marshadow GX
  • 4 Quick Ball
  • 4 Scoop Up Net
  • 4 Super Speed Up
  • 4 Trainer’s Mail
  • 3 Ultra Ball
  • 2 Sky Field
  • 1 Float Stone
  • 2 Muscle Band
  • 5 Psychic Energy

8) Salamence VMAX


Salamence has always been considered one of the weaker Dragon decks. Although we love Salamence, its cards have fared pretty poorly in competitive TCG. Salamence VMAX shows plenty of potential, however! Salamence VMAX has recently led a handful of TCG successes. If you love Salamence and hope to finally have the chance to run your favorite Pokémon in TCG, it’s worth checking out.

How to play this deck:

  • Using Volcanion’s Flare Starter or Welder, you could attach Fire Energy to Salamence V. With enough Energy (let’s say three!), your Salamence V could then help your Salamence VMAX attack with Max Wings.
  • Find a way to attach one Powerful Energy to bring Max Wings’ damage from 240 to 260.

What’s so great about this deck? 

  • It isn’t as common as the others, like ADP/Z or PikaRom. You may be able to surprise your enemies with a Salamence VMAX deck.
  • Salamence VMAX’s 320 HP makes it sturdy. Salamence V’s 220 HP isn’t too shabby either.
  • The 240-260 damage that you could inflict upon your opponents is nothing to sneeze at. 

Sample deck list for your Salamence VMAX deck:

  • 1 Crobat V
  • 1 Mew
  • 1 Tyrogue
  • 2 Big Charm
  • 2 Dedenne GX
  • 2 Evolution Incense
  • 3 Boss’s Orders
  • 4 Double Colorless Energy
  • 4 Giant Hearth
  • 4 Pokégear 3.0
  • 4 Pokémon Communications
  • 4 Powerful Energy
  • 4 Professor’s Research
  • 4 Quick Ball
  • 4 Weakness Guard Energy
  • 4 Welder
  • 10 Fire Energy 

9) Ultra Necrozma


In Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, this Psychic-Dragon ‘mon shows up in some of the game’s most climactic fights. With an eclectic move pool that’s made even stronger by Neuroforce, Ultra Necrozma is memorable for pulverizing most of us puny trainers at first meeting. The TCG version of Ultra Necrozma differs from its Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon counterpart in a pretty important way: its Ability limits moves, rather than amplifying them. “Ultra Burst” was originally the name of the move that transforms Necrozma into a dual-type Ultra Beast. In TCG, it becomes the Ability stopping your Ultra Necrozma from attacking unless your enemy has two or fewer Prize Cards at hand.

Luckily, you have several options to bypass your Necrozma’s Ability, like the Silent Lab card. You should probably have at least four to five in your deck in case your foe uses Chaotic Swell to nullify all Stadium cards. If you’d rather avoid this, you could also utilize another Pokémon to lock the Abilities of both your Pokémon and your opponent’s. BREAKpoint’s Garbodor (via Garbotoxin) can lock Abilities in your game minus the risk of falling victim to anti-Stadium cards. Perfect for Expanded, where Ultra Necrozma shines.

How to play this deck

  • Add some BREAKpoint Garbodors with Garbotoxin to your deck.
  • Happily start attacking with your Ultra Necrozma’s Luster of Downfall.
  • Use Octillery as your Support attacker.

What’s so great about this deck?

  • In most cases, ability locks are used simply to throw off your enemy’s game. Here, it serves a dual purpose. The ability lock lets you exploit Ultra Necrozma’s Luster Downfall, which guarantees at least a tremendous 170 damage — and you can stop your enemy from enjoying their Pokémon’s Abilities!
  • Luster of Downfall also removes your enemy’s Energy. Ultra Necrozma can pretty much function as your Energy Removal machine.
  • Ultra Necrozma is affordable. As it’s both cheap and super strong, it’s one of the best-value decks you could buy.

Sample list for your Ultra Necrozma deck:

  • 1 Beast Energy
  • 1 Buzzwole
  • 1 Computer Search (if you can afford it) or 1 Dowsing Machine (for those of us who are broke)
  • 1 Counter Energy
  • 1 Garbodor
  • 1 Prism Energy
  • 2 Field Blower
  • 2 Fighting Fury Belt
  • 2 Float Stone
  • 2 Great Catcher
  • 2 Guzma & Hala
  • 2 Octillery
  • 2 Remoraid
  • 2 Rescue Stretcher
  • 2 Special Charge
  • 2 Teammates
  • 2 VS Seeker
  • 4 Double Dragon Energy
  • 4 Nest Ball
  • 4 Professor Juniper
  • 4 Silent Lab
  • 4 Trainer’s Mail
  • 4 Ultra Necrozma 

10) Zekrom & Pikachu (tag team)


Last but certainly not the least, “PikaRom” remains one of the most popular decks. Pikachu and Zekrom as a duo have endured countless rotations, even after skeptics constantly predict their downfall.

How to play this deck

  • Find three Energy for your PikaRom. One way you can do this is to use Professor’s Research. Somewhere between the first two turns, fire off PikaRom’s Full Blitz.
  • You should then decide where to attach all that resulting Energy.
  • Use Tapu Koko’s Dance of the Ancients to retrieve energy.
  • You can spend some of that Energy on PikaRom’s 200-damage Tag Bolt GX. Tag Bolt GX can also wipe out one of your opponent’s Benched Pokémon, if there’s at least three extra Lightning Energy.

What’s so great about this deck

  • This deck is immensely powerful, yet it always requires players to thoroughly think per scenario.
  • PikaRom has longevity. You don’t have to worry over having to ditch it come next rotation.
  • When played right, PikaRom is fast and ruthless.

Sample list for your Zekrom & Pikachu deck:

  • 1 Big Charm
  • 1 Cherish Ball
  • 1 Crobat V
  • 1 Eldegoss V
  • 1 Mewtwo & Mew GX
  • 1 Tapu Koko V
  • 1 Tapu Lele V
  • 1 Team Yell Grunt
  • 1 Vikavolt
  • 2 Boltund V
  • 2 Dedenne GX
  • 2 Chaotic Swell
  • 2 Zekrom & Pikachu GX
  • 3 Electromagnetic Radar
  • 3 Speed Lightning Energy
  • 4 Crushing Hammer
  • 4 Marnie
  • 4 Professor’s Research
  • 4 Switch
  • 10 Lightning Energy


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