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Caleb Gedemer

"Boom Revenge" — Vespiquen and Yanmega BREAK in the Standard Format

Vespiquen with Yanmega BREAK and without Battle Compressor? ...

09/28/2016 by Caleb Gedemer

Vespiquen with Yanmega BREAK and without Battle Compressor? Deck lists for some of the top decks in the Standard format? Find it all and more with Caleb Gedemer's newest article!


Hello all, today we will be delving into yet another exciting Standard format deck and deck list to go with it, along with all the fun stuff that makes the deck good and how it fares against the rest of the competition. Well, I bet you would like to know what deck I am even talking about! That deck is Vespiquen with Yanmega BREAK. Now wait, you might still be thinking that Vespiquen without Battle Compressor is completely obsolete and should not be considered for a second. This thought is definitely untrue and hopefully after reading, that idea will dispelled forever.

This is a very solid deck with tons and tons of options against every single deck out there. I may be a little overzealous or rash in this assessment, but at this point in time, I believe Vespiquen with Yanmega BREAK to be the best overall deck in Standard.

Hopefully I have your attention now, let us get right into it!


The Description

I tried this deck out about a week ago and was instantly impressed. When playing a large number of Pokemon, Professor Sycamore becomes a very viable way of getting critters in the Discard for Vespiquen’s Bee Revenge attack. I was in preparation for a League Challenge tournament and playing a few games against my girlfriend’s Xerneas with Rainbow Force deck. I easily won four legitimate games in a row against a deck that was really popular in the area, so I with that had found my deck of choice.

Vespiquen currently has a tough time getting to the damage numbers it needs to. This deck fixes this problem perfectly. Yanmega BREAK is an excellent supplementary attacker and provides a counter to many of Vespiquen’s inherited problems, such as Giratina-EX and Glaceon-EX.

Yanmega BREAK alone is a very potent attacker. Along with Bursting Balloon, damage adds up super fast and Ariados can even Poison our opponent’s Pokemon for extra damage in between turns!

The Deck List

The Tournament

Round 1 vs. Carbink/Haxorus/Octillery 2-0; 1-0-0

First Game

Alright, I really do not want to talk about this one too much. This really is not a deck and in addition, my opponent mistakenly played Training Center, a rotated card in the Standard format.

Second Game

Going off of what I just said, I do not want to go into any detail. But, I would like to point out that after these two games, I was extremely confident in the way my deck was running, even if the opponent’s deck had been better.

Round 2 vs. Bisharp/Raichu/Shaymin-EX/Volcanion-EX/Xerneas 2-0; 2-0-0

First Game

At last, it only took one round to cut to the chase about why I really decided to play this deck. My opponent ran extremely hot and did well on Max Elixir drops. We traded Prizes from each of our second turns onwards, with my Yanmega BREAK taking a knockout and then their Raichu returning the favor with its Weakness advantage.

Xerneas is a clunkier attacker than both Vespiquen and the Yan’ BREAK. This was made quite apparent throughout the course of this game where my opponent missed a Fairy Energy off of multiple Max Elixirs. Exp. Share was a no-show as far as the game went as well, due to the fact that it always wound up in the Discard or on the wrong Pokemon.

This one ended up being very close, even still, with Bisharp knocking out my Vespiquens in one attack for a single Energy with its Retaliate attack. I was put down to one card with an N, but luckily drew out of it since I had thinned my deck as I played and left myself with pretty much all outs to the low hand size.

Second Game

I had already felt confident about this matchup going into the series, but after the first game, that theory was confirmed. I knew that my deck would have to set up and I would be good to go. I started strongly with a Yanmega BREAK, taking a knockout or two and going from there. My opponent ran slightly better with Max Elixir this game, which was initially bothersome.

My big break in this game opened when my opponent did not have any form of a backup attacker, without Max Elixir to get one going. I from there took some cheap Prizes and finished the game with a knockout on a Shaymin-EX for the win.

“Rainbow Road” as a deck is a really good matchup for Vespiquen with Yanmega BREAK, because it can attack for no Energy cost and at the same time still trade attacks for knockouts and the Prizes that come with them. Special Charge is especially potent since its inclusion allows for a “guaranteed” use of four Double Colorless Energy in a game and hopefully four attacking Vespiquens.

Round 3 vs. Hoopa-EX/M Rayquaza-EX/Raichu/Shaymin-EX/Unown 0-2; 2-1-0

First Game

I was a little overzealous going into this one. I figured I would be able to get the Pokemon piled up in no time, with some powerful Bee Revenge attacks taking down my opponent’s beefy M Rayquaza-EXs. I also noticed that Yanmega, not even the BREAK, would be pretty decent if my opponent’s Pokemon have Pokemon Tool cards attached, like a Rayquaza Spirit Link.

The first game started extremely slowly for me, but the exact opposite for my opponent. They were able to fill their Bench quickly (not that this matters damage wise) with plenty of Hoopa-EX and Shaymin-EX, snagging multiple M Rayquaza-EXs and tossing them on the board. This put me in a pretty rough spot where I was forced to either Lysandre targets on the Bench immediately for knockouts or attempt to take down a fresh M Ray in one pop.

I came extremely close to pulling off the win; my opponent played Raichu, a tech for Klefki and I left myself with just a lone Vespiquen in play, hoping that the opponent would be unable to address it and then I had a Lysandre on my following turn for the last two Prizes I needed for the win. My other option would have been going all out to take a knockout on the Active 220 HP Pokemon-EX, but that would have been a bit of a stretch and would have required Benching at least one Shaymin-EX. This Shaymin-EX would have become a game winner for the opponent, so either of these win conditions was extremely risky. Ultimately, the one I chose was safer, considering my opponent needed a Raichu and a Double Colorless. With the other play, all my opponent needed was a Lysandre and with Lysandre in their Discard along with just one VS Seeker, the first option seemed much more safe, in theory.

Second Game

Going into the second game, I assumed a win for this round would be out of reach. I needed to remain calm and just shoot for the win in this game and let the actual match result follow, as an afterthought (generally if you lose or tie a single round in a League Challenge, you will not place first; first place was my goal for Championship Point reasons). I had a better start in this game, but it required the Benching of Shaymin-EXs. The regular Yanmega is a super strong attacker in this matchup and it put in a lot of work going at the M Rayquaza-EXs.

My opponent, once again, got off to a rocking good start and was able to take Prizes each turn for the duration of the game. I did play a little catch up by taking some Shaymin-EX Prizes off of their Bench and turning the tides slightly in that regard. A clutch moment for my opponent came in the form of the single Teammates they decided to play; definitely an unconventional card to play, but it came in handy to continue the stream of M Rayquaza-EXs attacking.

Ultimately, this second game was decided by Klefki, or the lack thereof, Klefki. We got into another close Prize position and my opponent would only be able to address a Klefki-equipped Pokemon with Raichu. This being said, that ideal would be very hard to reach. Anyways, I was unable to find this Klefki and the opponent was able to keep attacking with M Rayquaza-EX and its Emerald Break for timely knockouts. I ended up getting down to a yield of two Prizes left, something that got me thinking about other options that could be played to shore up this matchup.

Round 4 vs. Garbodor/Houndoom-EX/Shaymin-EX 2-1; 3-1-0

First Game

My friends from Green Bay, Wisconsin and I have a running joke of “poking fun” at this deck by howling “Dooooooom!” whenever we see it, or just for fun. Sometimes this is also accompanied by a wolf howl as well, especially when Enrique Avila is involved. Anyways, when I saw this deck after the second round, I could not resist the urge and had to do it. When the pairings were then posted and I saw that I was facing the infamous deck, I figured I was probably doomed (haha, sorry) to lose. I thought up a game plan on the spot, figuring that it might not actually be that bad if I can utilize Yanmega and the BREAK in the early game to pick away at Houndoom-EXs and then if all goes well, in the end game, finish it up with Vespiquen.

This game when pretty much as I just mentioned. ‘mega was quite good, especially when coupled with Lysandre drops on Trubbish before they Evolved. I was able to continually get my hand down, or up, to four cards and the damage added up quickly. Garbodor was never a factor, since I knocked it out before it ever became a problem.

This game was cut very close when I had just a single Double Colorless Energy left towards the final stages, but I was able to draw into it and attack with Vespiquen. As it turns out, Melting Horn Discarding the top two cards from a player’s deck can actually be quite beneficial when that deck aims to Discard Pokemon to fuel an attack.

Second Game

Going into this game, I was feeling increasingly better about this matchup. All went to play once again with timely Lysandre drops on Trubbish, before it Evolved. I took a knockout on a Shaymin-EX earlier on, as well, to shore up the Prize to deck size exchange. Melting Horn starting doing some serious damage to my resources early, snagging both Special Charge and the first of my Prized Double Colorless Energy.

Yanmega BREAK and I kept getting extremely lucky with Lysandre plays on Benched Trubbish before they were online as Garbodor. Not only that, but Houndoom-EXs slowly began to meet their demise. The opponent again and again found ways to get Trubbish back into play, using both Puzzle of Time and Super Rod.

Eventually, Garbodor was set onto the field, along with a Pokemon Tool card. Now, it was crunch time. I had a single Prize left after three Trubbish knockouts and a Shaymin-EX knockout. Vespiquen would have to find a way to take home the gold, the only problem with this was the fact that I had only one Energy left in my deck and no current option to get enough Pokemon in the Discard to knockout a Fighting Fury Belted ‘doom. I watched in horror as Melting took two of my Shaymin-EX at once and then on the following turn, the last of my Supporter outs, two Professor Sycamore. This was the last of my Discarding effects and the game was over. This was very unsatisfying and I knew a quick Game Three would have to decide this series.

Third Game

Taking down the ‘doom became my biggest goal for the tourney and I knew if I could play to the best of my ability and have a bit of better luck this time around, I could do it. Again and I know I have said this a few times now, Yanmega and the BREAK that goes with it did most of the work in the opening parts of this game. I was able to take down a Shaymin-EX right away, leaving myself with only two more Prizes to be taken. After an Ultra Ball search, my opponent told me straight up that two Trubbish were Prized. This in mind, Yanmega BREAK was definitely going to take the cake.

Over the course of the following turns, Yanmega BREAK started to chip away at Houndoom-EXs, but Max Potion staved off a knockout for a while. Eventually, one fell, but at this point I was now at mercy of N Supporter card drops to only two cards. This noted, Yanmega BREAK would be hard pressed to ever attack for no attack cost again.

Vespiquen was dubbed mentally as the game winner for this match. I had a considerable amount of Pokemon in the Discard already, but seeing as though my opponent had yet again gotten pretty good luck on Melting Horn uses as well as through other circumstances, my Special Charge and Double Colorless were very much so an endangered resource. Again, one Double Colorless was left to bring home victory. The pressure was on to get it in my hand and keep it there. As the game progressed some more, I was down to very few cards. Along with Team Rocket’s Trickery and obviously Melting Horn, the game was starting to look somewhat bleak. It was about then that a Professor Sycamore popped into my hand and my otherwise dead stash of Pokemon was Discarded and the magic knockout number was achieved. Not only that, but the last Double Colorless Energy in deck was drawn, too! Great game, opponent. This was by far one of the more satisfying wins in the game that I have ever had.

Round 5 vs. Klefki/Mew/Shaymin-EX/Umbreon-EX/Yveltal/Yveltal-EX 1-2; 3-2-0

First Game

This deck and the opponent piloting it was one of the main reasons I chose to switch decks from the day before this tournament (I played M Mewtwo-EX with Psychic Infinity to a Top Four placement). I believed that Vespiquen and Yanmega BREAKs would be great attackers in this matchup, also posing a threat that was very hard to knockout.

I was mainly right with this assumption, as the only attacker in my opponent’s deck that could really handle the pressure was Yveltal-EX, or a Mew posing as an Yveltal-EX in the attacking regard. Every other Pokemon was pretty obsolete. I opened the game with a Yanmega BREAK, simply attacking for solid chunks at a time and getting ever closer to a knockout. With no Energy cards attached, Yveltal-EX was not even that great of an attack to handle my big bug.

Vespiquen finished this one off for me in the end. The Pokemon totals had raced higher and higher and the time came to obviously push out the queen bee. Vesp’ quickly handled all of my opponent’s Pokemon that were remaining with ease, even an Yveltal-EX with a Fighting Fury Belt on tap and with that, we were onto the second game.

Second Game

This game was pretty gross, Yanmegas were in short supply to begin the game and Forest of Giant Plants was just not having it. The pressure from the opponent’s Yveltal-EX were just much too much this time around.

Due to some other unfortunate Double Colorless Energy discards, it was hard to truly keep attacking with Vespiquen and as stated before Yanmega and the BREAK were missing in action for the most part of this one.

I was feeling confident in my chances for the next game. There seemed to be enough time left if my senses did not fail me and the matchup was presumably good, based upon the results of the first game.

Third Game

I absolutely dominated the first portion of this game. To be completely honest, there was basically no doubt in my mind that I would not come out of it victorious. What did not come to much surprise was an incredible setup that included Ariados, two Vespiquens, a regular Yanmega and two Yanmega BREAK. I was even able to avoid Benching Shaymin-EX this game!

Everything went according to play up until I was down to one Prize card. I had the above field, still and my opponent had four Prizes themselves. They played an N which gave me a single card. Now my deck was hovering around fourteen cards and the last time I had checked, I had at least four outs. This is not the greatest number in the world to be looking at, but I figured I would draw out of it with a guaranteed two more turns in the game before loss was inevitable. To my utter dismay, I drew and passed for multiple turns and my opponent snagged their final Prizes with a lone Yveltal-EX. I was a Double Colorless Energy attachment to one of my Vespiquens from the win.

This was a disappointing way to end the tournament, but it left me with a lot of hope to try some new things with the deck and try to learn from the results of the tournament. I thoroughly enjoyed this deck quite a bit, it was a blast to play and it was great to play Vespiquen again.

The First Takeaways

After playing the deck for a bit, I saw some ins and outs that could be improved upon. Firstly, M Pokemon-EX decks give it some trouble. This can be addressed in the form of Bursting Balloon. The Balloon gives the deck extra damage output and potential that is extremely beneficial when fishing for knockouts with Vespiquen. Yanmega and its BREAK also do not hit for extremely large numbers when it comes to knockouts, so damage from Bursting Balloon and the tech Pokemon of Ariados can start to get those numbers climbing in the right direction.

On the other hand, Ariados itself was not always too useful. I found myself accidentally or unintentionally discarding it in favor of other, more important cards. It does have its uses, though and is especially good with the Yanmegas, as we just touched on. Klefki in a lower count did not make a big difference against M Pokemon-EX. It really made no impact whatsoever. For this reason, it may be best to take it out for the time being and see if it is missed as a partner for the deck.

The Pokemon Ranger space in the deck could have been much better served with another, better card. Yanmega BREAK itself totes an attack that suffices for some of the attacks that stop us in our tracks, such as Giratina-EX or Glaceon-EX. Lastly, Revitalizer was pretty abysmal and obsolete. I feel there are better cards that could be played. Most times the Revi gets caught in a hand that needs to be discarded and it just does not play all too well in a deck that is aiming to discard Pokemon to increase attacking power.

The Revised Deck List

The Outside Second Take

Here we have a quick overview of my buddy Ryan Bruckner’s performance with this deck at a recent League Challenge. Ryan placed in the Top Thirty-Two of this past year’s United States National Championship and is a budding star in the game in his first competitive season of play. He will be making his first big tournament appearance in months at the Arizona Regional Championship this October. Let us see what he has to say about his own experiences!

Chicagoland League Challenge Tournament Report with Vespiquen/Yanmega BREAK

Round 1: My first game was against Zygarde-EX with Carbink BREAK. It seems like an easy matchup since I hit for weakness with non-EXs, but my opponent did not play any Pokemon Tools down so I had to discard enough Pokemon to take knockouts with Vespiquen. My opponent kept track of the Double Colorless Energy I used and with three of them gone, he used Lysandre for a Shaymin-EX I had played earlier. If I had prized my last Double, my Shaymin would have been stuck active, but I drew my last Energy and used Sky Return to put the Shaymin back into my hand. Soon after I used my own Lysandre on his Zygarde-EX and knocked it out with Bee Revenge for my last two prizes. 1-0-0

Round 2: My second game was against an unusual deck; M-Ampharos-EX with Magnezone. I had a slower start but I was able to knock out his Magneton before he evolved it. My opponent eventually attached enough Energy to an Ampharos, Mega Evolved and took a few Prizes. When I knocked out the Ampharos, he had a Jolteon-EX set up, but since it does not do very much damage, it was not a big threat. I used Sky Return with my Shaymin-EX and then finished it with a Bee Revenge. My slow start made the game closer than it should have been but the result was the same. 2-0-0

Round 3: Caleb, the writer of this article, was my third opponent. He set up Garbodor on his second turn while manually Mega Evolving Mewtwo-EXs to avoid the extra Yanmega damage. With Garbodor up, my damage was greatly reduced and I could not take knockouts and lost the game. 2-1-0

Round 4: This round was a challenging mirror match. I went second and took the first prize, but at the cost of playing multiple Shaymin-EXs down. Using each other’s Bursting Balloons, we traded using Yanmegas for zero Energy attacks and occasionally a Vespiquen. Tied at two Prizes remaining, I ran out of attackers and had to pass with a Yanma equipped with a Bursting Balloon attached Active. but without a Lysandre on my Shaymin-EX, my opponent had to knock out the Yanma with his Vespiquen, in the process taking 60 damage. I promote my final Vespiquen and draw a Double, N him to one and Sky Return for a knockout on the Vespiquen, eliminating his final energy in play. My opponent promoted a Yanmega BREAK and I hoped they did not have game. Admittedly, I should have lost; but my opponent drew nothing useful off of the N and passed. I then took my last prize on his Yanmega BREAK that he promoted with a Bee Revenge. 3-1-0

Round 5: My final round was against an Yveltal-EX deck with Max Elixirs. My opponent dead drew after we both started with Shaymin-EX and I was able to set up and win fairly handily. 4-1-0

When I looked at the results, I was satisfied with second place because I figured I should have lost the mirror match in the fourth round. I was very happy with how the deck performed and really like it in the Standard format!

The Second Takeaways

Bursting Balloon does improve the deck. It may not give us the best chance against M Mewtwo-EX (Psychic Infinity) with Garbodor, but it does give them an extra something to play around. If they mess up and start attacking into the Bursting Balloons or miss an early Garbodor, things could be a lot different.

Yanmega BREAK is an amazing attacker in the early game and Judge can steal quick wins when the opponent may run into a bad hand. The pressure coming from Yanmegas along with early disruption stops plenty of builds in their tracks.

The deck is fast and hard hitting but as we have touched on, is weak to Garbodor decks. The popularity of Garbodor really seems to vary vastly by region, some people have even taken it out of their decks in favor for more consistency cards that do not clog up draws as they play the game. I feel that the game as two sides right now: a M Mewtwo-EX with Psychic Infinity dominated format and a format where Vespiquen with Yanmega BREAK is the top dog as well. It really depends on how many of each deck are played.

The Matchups Against Top Contenders

M Mewtwo-EX (Psychic Infinity)

Well, most of these builds use Garbodor. Garb is bad for a few reasons. It stops us from using Unown’s Farewell Letter to increase damage output which really stifles Vespiquen into obscurity. Shaymin-EX is really important to our deck, too, to get Pokemon in hand and then Professor Sycamore them away. Lastly and most importantly, is the fact that Yanmega’s amazing Ability is sent offline. Vespiquen kind of snowballs its way into games in this build. Yanmega is essential to not only start the game with, but then gradually add up damage as the bugs get swatted for knockouts.

Bursting Balloon does aid us so that we can supplement lower damaging Bee Revenge attacks. The main problem with this matchup is that Vespiquens are so easily knocked out, so that M Mewtwo-EX can take a few hits, but take out multiple bees in the process. We simply do not trade all that well with this sort of a predicament.

This matchup can be swayed if our opponent is to have a bit of a harder time on the luck side and Garbodor can be addressed early with a Lysandre knockout. That way, the opposing M Mewtwo-EXs will be in most cases forced to attack into a Balloon and get punished by it. On another note, an upcoming Mewtwo from the new set of Generations can be added in our deck to help out this matchup, but in the meantime, or options are limited.

Deck List | Caleb Gedemer

M Rayquaza-EX (Emerald Break)

With the changes we discussed earlier, this deck is much more manageable. Bursting Balloon goes a far way in this matchup. M Rayquaza-EX has a hard time finding every single thing it needs when Yanmega can easily hit it for sizable damage when they have a Pokemon Tool attached, coming in the form of Rayquaza Spirit Link. Balloon’s damaging impact makes Vespiquen a viable attacker from the very beginning of the game. The good old bee can usually hit for 100 damage or so through the first or second turns of the game with Professor Sycamore and Ultra Ball usage.

With our array of non-EX firepower and limited Benching of Shaymin-EXs, this game will be much easier to win than it will be for our opponent. For every two non-EX Pokemon they take out, we should get one Pokemon-EX. This being said, at some point in the game we ought to out trade them, especially once Bee Revenge hits its full potential with damage in the higher 200s.

I am glad I stumbled upon the addition of Bursting Balloon, especially for its utility in this matchup.

Deck List | Pablo Meza


In the mirror match, or something close to a mirror match, our deck will have the advantage. With Yanmega BREAK swinging for 100 damage, Vespiquens will hit the deck that way and no Energy will be sacrificed. Our opponent will at some point either run out of Energy cards, or some kind of problem with finding them, this is where we will catch a break and pull ahead.

We also have a higher count of Forest of Giant Plants, so it may even be recommended to play second to score the first knockout and therefore gain the advantage in the Prize trade.

Yanmegas are definitely the game changed for our advantageous position that comes in this pseudo mirror match.

Deck List | Ryan Bruckner

Xerneas (Rainbow Force)

One of the main reasons I ended up playing this deck myself for the first time was due to some testing I had gotten in the night before the tournament. I had been playing against the Xerneas deck multiple times with amazing results. By the second or third turn, I had been using Bee Revenge for quick, easy one hit knockouts on the Xerneases.

Bursting Balloon makes this matchup even better because Yanmega BREAK can now Barrier Break for 100 and when the opposing Xerneas attacks us again, the Balloon will take effect and claim the knockout.

Yanmega by itself can actually be useful as well with Assault Boom against a Xerneas with a Pokemon Tool card attached. It will be a perfect knockout. Not only are we both non-EX Pokemon, Xerneas takes more Energy to attack and tends to be a clunkier deck. This is a favorable matchup.

Deck List | Caleb Gedemer


Another great matchup. Yveltal decks are geared more towards countering the big M Pokemon-EX decks of the game right now, especially M Mewtwo-EX. They utilize the baby Yveltal with Fright Night to spread damage and stop the effects of Pokemon Tool cards, most notably Spirit Links. Against this deck they are forced to attack with Darkrai-EX, Yveltal-EX or Mews, copying the attacks of the aforementioned Pokemon.

Yanmega and the BREAK are very hard for the opponent to knock out. This is because we generally will never have any Energy attached to them! Evil Ball will be hitting for a pittance each time and the opponent will have to rely on having a Dark Pulse from Darkrai-EX for adequate damage or an overpowered Yveltal-EX, which would in that case make Evil Ball go the distance.

After our Yanmegas and Yanmega BREAKs have been cleared (which takes quite a while and we may have already won by this point), Vespiquen is able to take the reigns and obliterate everything in sight. Bee Revenge should be easily knocking out Darkrai-EXs as well as Yveltal-EXs and everything in between is cheese as it stands anyways.

Deck List | Austin Baggs


Vespiquen with Yanmega BREAK is a very good deck in the Standard format. It brings a cost-effective presence to the table with zero Energy requirement attacks and a powerful cleanup attacking Pokemon in Vespiquen. Like I mentioned earlier, I think there are two sides to the Standard format right now. One side with M Mewtwo-EX with Psychic Infinity at the helm and the other with this very deck right up on top. Garbodor is what holds this deck back from the epitome of greatness, however. But regardless, take this deck with confidence to tournaments, it is fun to play and very strong as a deck. Good luck everyone!

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