Pokemon of the Week 9: Gardevoir

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Pokemon and Daniel Arsham team up for art collaboration.. Image Courtesy The Pokemon Company, James Law /

Welcome to Pokemon of the Week, the ninth installment in a recurring series that looks at the impact of some of our favorite Pokemon on the anime, TCG and VGC. Taking a trip down memory lane to see the impact these Pokemon have had on the series and our lives is what makes Pokemon the magical thing it is.

After a brief dalliance with the Legendary Pokemon we return to putting the spotlight on a Pokemon featured alongside one of the regions champions. Gardevoir, the Embrace Pokemon, was popular long before it joined the ranks of champion three generations after its debut. It benefitted further from becoming a dual Psychic- and Fairy-type once that typing was added to the franchise.

It is the mirror of the other Pokemon that Kirlia evolves into, Gallade. Gardevoir has the reverse Attack and Special Attack stats of its relative. While Gallade is a powerful physical attacker Mega Gardevoir boasts the highest Special Attack of all Fairy-types and the highest Special Defense of all non-Legendary Psychic Pokemon.

Many non-traditional fans may know Gardevoir more for its appearances in in the Super Smash Bros. franchise. It has appeared in Pokeballs for the games in Brawl, WiiU/3DS and Ultimate. It uses a powerful Reflect to bounce off projectile attacks from its trainer. Gardevoir is also a usable character in Pokken but unfortunately has not made an appearance at the World Championships since 2015 where it lost in the opening round. The focus for Gardevoir has been in other competitive realms, so let’s dive in.

Pokemon: The First Movie. (Photo By Getty Images) /

In the anime

Gardevoir did make a variety of minor appearances in the anime but it is mostly known for appearing alongside the Kalos Champion Diantha. It is the champion’s only known partner in the anime so therefore is seen battling more often than most champion Pokemon.

It makes an impressive debut, fighting against an Absol and being too fast to be touched by a single attack. Without Mega Evolving Gardevoir was also able to overwhelm Ash’s Pikachu before Mega Evolving to dismiss Team Rocket.

In the final official battle we would witness for the champion, Gardevoir was forced to Mega Evolve to contend with Ash’s Greninja and its unique transformation. Greninja was showing the ability to overpower the champion but ultimately passed out from overexertion, resulting in another victory for Mega Garevoir.

Gardevoir matched the grace and elegance of its trainer and became a hero for the entire Kalos region. It battled alongside the heroes of the story as they defended the world against Team Flare and the Giant Rock that threatened the entire planet.

It also it worth mentioning that a Shiny Gardevoir capable of Mega Evolution is seen in the movie based around Volcanion. While the movie is focused on many Pokemon capable of this phenomenon, Gardevoir is one of the only two Shiny Pokemon featured, setting it apart even further.

Pokemon cards (Photo by John Keeble/Getty Images) /


Before getting into the more recent success it must be noted that Gardevoir was the anchor of one of the most successful TCG strategies of more than a decade ago. Jason Klaczynski is a three-time World Champion making him the most successful TCG player at that level.

In 2008 he won his second title with a deck called Psychic Lock and it was based around Gardevoir and Gallade. The Gardevoir in question had a Poke-Power called Telepass that allowed the player to search their opponents discard pile for a supporter and use it for this effect. This is clearly a powerful tool and allowed Gardevoir to play to play a role as a bench sitter.

It also had access to the attack Psychic Lock, the decks namesake, that did 60 damage and prevented your opponents from using Poke-Powers the following turn. The strategy even ran Gardevoir Lv.X as a finisher. It’s Poke-Power allowed it to switch in and out of the active spot and its attack, Bring Down, Knocked Out any Pokemon with the fewest remaining HP.

Garedvoir had previously finished second in the Senior Division the World Championship in 2004, the first ever event of its kind. It would also finish in second place in the Master’s Division World Championship in 2010. Then the Embrace Pokemon would not return to the top tables until the end of the XY era.

Mega Gardevoir EX was a fan favorite archetype that peaked at second place at two European Regional championships. This packed two different Gardevoi EXs and two different Mega Gardevoir EXs in a unique amalgamation. The pure Fairy-type Mega did 30 damage times the number of Fairy Energy attached to all your Pokemon. This was fueled by the ever-present Xerneas in the early game and Mega Turbo during the mid and late game. The other Mega was a rare dual type, functioning as both a Fairy and Psychic type attacker. Its attack allowed you to discard any number of your benched Pokemon to add 10 damage for each to an attack that already did 110 damage. This allowed you to remove any liabilities from your field and do more damage to get closer to knocking out threats.

Finally, as we move into the GX era there are two more Gardevoir cards that have seen major success. The most successful was the regular GX that debuted at the 2017 World Championships where it finished first and seventh overall. This deck was dominant and adaptable. It hearkened back to the Pokemon many older fans had grown up on that depending on evolving. Gardevoir GX would go on to win two Regional Championships, one Special Event and an International Championship in addition to numerous top cut finishes over the years.

Gardevoir would return during the Tag Team era and play the spoiler for a time. Gardevoir & Sylveon GX debuted at the 2019 World Championships and just missed out on the top cut, finishing in ninth, tenth and fourteenth. It would go on to win three Regional Championships prior to the dawn of the Sword and Shield era due to its solid control aspects using Green’s Exploration to search their deck and Fairy Charms to block specific attackers depending on the match up.


While Gardevoir has been a dominant force in the TCG realm its success in VGC is slightly more sparce. The most prolific success came at the 2014 World Championships that we have talked about before. Gardevoir was a member of the Pachirisu Sejun Park championship team that was a powerful special attacker that also offered the team Swagger support.

At the following years Championship Mega Gardevoir would make an appearance on the 8th place finishing team for Lajos Woltersdorf and the 6th place team from Daichi Kumabe. Here Gardevoir served as a powerful Trick Room sweeper that was able to take advantage of the Pixilate Ability to turn Hyper Voice into an oppressive spread move that dealt STAB (Same Type Attack Bonus) damage.

When Megas returned to the format in 2018 Gardevoir would help Ben Kyriakou finish in 4th place at a German Regional Championship. Finally, at the North American International Championship in 2018 multiple players brought a new Mega Gardevoir to battle with the best finish coming with 8th place William Hall. In place of Trick Room this Gardevoir used Ally Switch to bamboozle the opponent and put them on edge at every turn. Gardevoir has yet to see success in the Galar era but time will tell if the reintroduction of Mega Stones changes that in the future.