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Jose Marrero

"The New Buzz in Hollywood" - A Look at the New Vespiquen and Friends

Jose discusses Vespiquen post-Sun and Moon to handle most of the metagame.

02/14/2017 by Jose Marrero

Introduction

Hello again, 60cards readers! With Anaheim Regionals creeping up by the days, I wanted to briefly discuss another deck that has potential. In this article, I'll be talking to you about how Vespiquen and friends should look post-Sun and Moon. Vespiquen's friend circle just got a little bigger and for good reasons. We have seen all kinds of Vespiquen decks in the past, but now with Sun and Moon in the format Vespiquen gains a new friend in the form of a Lemur, Passimian, as you will see in the list below.

Passimian is one of the biggest additions to the newly formed Vespiquen and friends and this is particularly due to the dominance of Darkrai-EX decks, as we saw back during Athens Regionals. Although Vespiquen placed 2nd and Top 4, they were both taken out by Darkrai-EX based decks. Fear no more Vespiquen players because now that Passimian is a thing, Darkrai-EX should fear the bees. Umbreon-GX and Tauros-GX should also not take likely of the newly formed Vespiquen. I think this deck as a lot of potential come Anaheim because of all the weakness bases it covers. Of course, Volcanion is still a huge threat to the deck. But if you expect the decks that are weak to this variant of Vespiquen then maybe it's the play for you.

With that said, let's go over the list I presented down below.

Analysis

4-4 Vespiquen AOR

The main attacker in the deck which is versatile against basically anything simply because Vespiquen has the potential to one hit KO most Pokémon with enough Pokémon in the discard. This is mainly why the deck runs a 4-4 line. You want to be able to abuse Vespiquen at a moments notice no matter what you are up against. Now with the release of Sun and Moon Pokémon such as Lapras-GX should fear it's weakness to Grass types. The newly formed Water Box deck should be no match for this deck. With Grass decks being more popular due to Sun and Moon, having Vespiquen take advantage of opposing Forest of Giant Plants can be a blessing in it'self. Vespiquen's first attack, Intelligence Gathering can come in handy for when your hand is dead so refilling your hand back to six can be ideal if need be. Vespiquen having free retreat is pretty clutch as well when it comes down to it. Most if not all Vespiquen variants should be running a 4-4 line.

2-2 Zebstrika BKP

This card is great against any Yveltal, M Rayquaza-EX, and can even take cheap KO's on Shaymin-EX of need be. With Anaheim Regionals next weekend I can see an increase in Yveltal based decks as well as M Rayquaza-EX, which makes Zebstrika the perfect answer to them because of it's attack, Crashing Bolt for just a single Double Colorless Energy which one hit KO's them. Not to mention Zebstrika also one hit KO's Lugia-EX which probably will see play along with Decidueye-GX and Tauros-GX. I can see adding in a third Blitzle if you expect to see those two decks more often than not just in case one Blitzle is prized.

1-1 Octillery BKT

I personally prefer Octillery over the newly Oranguru card simply because it yields five cards as opposed to three. Sure Oranguru is a Basic Pokémon, however, Silent Lab shut's it off as well as Alolan Muk which neither shut off Octillery due to Octillery being a Stage 1 and not a Basic Pokémon. Those extra two cards can make all the difference between finding what you need and whiffing what you need. Still, it's a personal preference and whether or not you need the extra deck space for another card.

4 Passimian SAM

As I mentioned, Passimian is great against Darkrai-EX. Not to mention, Passimian can also do lethal damage against Tauros-GX and Umbreon-GX, two new Sun and Moon GX's. However, with Fighting Fury Belt on either Darkrai-EX or Tauros-GX, Passimian falls just short of the one-hit KO. Still, being able to easily two-shot these monster GX Pokémon can win you the game as long as you have attack after attack and not miss a beat. With three benched Passimian, it's doing a solid 100 base damage for a single Double Colorless Energy, which means it does 200 damage to the aforementioned Pokémon, enough to take out an opposing Umbreon-EX should they not have an Assault Vest on them. This is why you want to run four Passimian. Making your Dark matchup favorable is the way to go come Anaheim, as I feel they are going to be some of the strongest plays still. If you know Passimian is useless against a certain type of deck, then simply ditch them to the discard to fuel Vespiquen's Bee Revenge more. Another thing that makes Passimian clutch in this deck is it's usefulness against Glaceon-EX since Vespiquen can't do damage to it once it attacks with Crystal Way. At least Passimian can use Team Play twice to take Glaceon-EX out and survive a one-hit KO at the same time.

4 Unown AOR

You want to max this card out in basically every Vespiquen variant because it helps for two reasons: Unown can draw you a free card while at the same time help fuel Bee Revenge even more. Late game Unown is also useful for when you want to be less vulnerable to N. Having a couple on the bench helps, for this reason, assuming Octillery isn't already on the bench of course. Usually, most of the Unown are used up by turn two anyway.

3 Shaymin-EX 

Of course, you still need a heavy count of Shaymin-EX when playing something that wants to go through the deck as much and fast as possible. However, you have to be careful you don't fill the bench up too much to where you have no room for all the Passimian or multiple other attackers. Shaymin-EX can be used to return it back into your hand if need be, this way you are saving a Double Colorless Energy while doing damage at the same time. This is assuming that the 30 damage still ensures you are two shotting whatever Pokémon you are hitting so you don't have to sacrifice an important attacker to do so.

1 Mew-EX

Adding this Pokémon helps you to be able to one-hit KO M Mewtwo-EX more easily. Mew-EX can copy Vespiquen's Bee Revenge or Passimian's Team Play, although Bee Revenge is probably easier for achieving the one-hit KO. You just never know when Mew-EX can come in handy to copy any Colorless attack so playing one can be more clutch than you might think. Of course, you just have to watch out for Garbodor, Hex Maniac, and Alolan Muk when using Mew-EX.

1 Rattata EVO

As I mentioned, Fighting Fury Belt and Assault Vest can deny those one hit KO's, so having a Rattata to get rid of those Tools is ideal. With Rattata in the discard, you now have the potential to use it again thanks to Super Rod. Rattata can also get rid of Bursting Balloons, which isn't the worst thing taking the 60 damage since you're likely to get one-hit KOed anyway since Vespiquen only has 90 health and Passimian has 110.

2 Lysandre

When running attackers that abuse Double Colorless Energy for KO's it's always nice having two copies of Lysandre in case you need them early in the game. Being able to take out an early Garbodor or Darkrai-EX can make a difference in the long run.

1 Teammates

When using non-EX Pokémon to do lethal damage for a single Double Colorless Energy, and using Basic or Stage 1 it's always nice to have at least one Teammates. For example, you just attacked with Vespiquen or Passimian and all you need is another Vespiquen or Passimian and Double Colorless Energy then Teammates can grab both those cards without having to use many resources to find them. Teammates can also be reusable with VS Seeker which makes it even better when found early.

1 Hex Maniac

I'm unsure if you need Hex Maniac, however, Greninja might still be a thing and now Vileplume decks may rise even more due to Lurantis-GX. Not to mention Decidueye-GX may also see some play. These are all valid reasons to why Hex Maniac might need to stay in the deck.

3 Acro Bike

As much as I wanted to fit four of these cards I still think three is enough to keep the deck consistent. Acro Bike helps you ditch Pokémon easier for bigger Bee Revenges as well as helps dig for what you need whether it's a Double Colorless Energy or Ultra Ball.

2 Special Charge

Because this deck doesn't run Puzzle of Time and may have to use two attackers to KO things, essentially two Double Colorless Energy per KO means you want to run more than one Special Charge as there's a good chance you are forced to discard one early on. You need to be able to achieve an attack every turn for this deck to function properly.

2 Float Stone

This deck has a number of not-so-good starters so having a couple switch cards is needed. You really don't want to have to use Double Colorless Energy just to retreat (although there are two Special Charge). You definitely want a Float Stone on Octillery, and if you are playing Oranguru then you want one of it as well. One switching card just didn't seem ideal.

1 Revitalizer

Being able to get back a whole line of Vespiquen is ideal in case you don't want to Super Rod since it reduces your damage by an extra 10. Every Vespiquen deck should be running at least one Revitalizer because odds are you are going to want to discard a couple Vespiquen lines just to dish out more damage, so when late game comes Revitalizer comes in the clutch.

1 Super Rod

You want to be able to get back attackers or perhaps Rattata. You can even get back Octillery pieces if they were forced to be discarded. Getting back Passimians against Fighting-weak decks is necessary which Revitalizer can't get back.

2 Sky Field

Playing Sky Field as the stadium of choice helps you not care about bench space because you are likely to have a bunch of Pokémon you want to be in the discard anyway so you want the opponent to bump your Sky Field at some point anyway. For example, for when you bench all the Passimian and your opponent is threatened by them they are surely wanting to minimize them as soon as possible and if that's the case then Vespiquen will have a field day no pun intended.

Other card options

Eeveelutions (Jolteon/Vaporeon/Flareon AOR):

If you would much rather hit for weakness, then adding these Eeveelutions is the way to go, however, you would have to change the deck drastically. This means you basically have to take out Passimians, meaning now you won't have an easy answer to Darkrai-EX or Umbreon-GX based decks. Jolteon helps against M Rayquaza-EX and Yveltal based decks, but so does Zebstrika. Not to mention all these Eeveelutions can be stopped by Garbodor. As for Vaporeon, sure, it can come in handy against the deck's auto loss, Volcanion. Still, I feel you lose to it either way since they just KO Vaporeon as soon as possible or simply deny you of Eevees. Now, Flareon will most likely come in handy, as will Jolteon, since it answers Lurantis-GX, and Decidueye-GX pretty easily. You could even just play a 1-1 line of one of them depending on which one you think is needed most. You already cover Lightning weakness with Zebstrika, so maybe it's a good idea to have Flareon to cover Grass weakness.

Umbreon-GX + Dark Energy:

This Pokémon can be used as a secondary attacker. It's Shadow Bullet attack can do some nice damage and set up KO's on the bench by doing 30 damage to one of them. Dark Call GX is honestly a pretty good GX attack since it can discard any two energy from your opponent's field. Getting rid of both energy on an active Darkrai-EX can be nice. Combining Umbreon-GX with other Eeveelutions can be a new archetype deck as well altogether.

Tauros-GX:

This card is probably great in this deck, however, the opponent takes two prizes once KOd. It can come in handy against Glaceon-EX, but Passimian can do wonders in this situation. I would say Tauros-GX is a nice answer against Darkrai-EX, but so is Passimian. Tauros-GX is just so versatile when running Double Colorless Energy. Tauros-GX almost always will force the opponent into attacking into its GX attack, Mad Bull GX which makes Tauros-GX that good for one or two guaranteed prizes.

Oranguru:

I went over the differences of Octillery over Oranguru. I think most people will go with Oranguru simply because it's a Basic and it's new. Octillery just makes you less vulnerable to Silent Lab since the deck only runs two stadiums.

Klefki:

You don't need Klefki to beat M Rayquaza-EX, however, they might be needed to have a fighting chance against M Gardevoir-EX and M Mewtwo-EX. The deck does have Mew-EX to combat M Mewtwo-EX, but against M Gardevoir-EX there isn't much you can do until late game. Not to mention, attaching a Klefki onto an Unown then using Unown puts two Pokémon in the discard at the same time, which helps Bee Revenge do more damage faster.

Professor Kukui:

This card probably deserves a spot in the deck, however, for now there just isn't much room. I think with more testing you can decide if the extra 20 damage and two cards is worth it to play Professor Kukui. The extra 20 damage actually makes it so that you one-hit KO a Fighting Fury Belted Darkrai-EX and Tauros-GX with Passimian so maybe it does warrant a spot in the deck. I'm honestly not sure what I can see dropping for it, other than maybe one Float Stone or Hex Maniac.

Brigette:

Having the option to search out any three Basic non-EX Pokémon can be very good. Being able to get three Passimian out at once is awesome against those Fighting-weak Pokémon. Or any combination you prefer, whether it's two Combee and a Remoraid, or three Passimian.

Nest Ball:

The deck has plenty of solid targets for Nest Ball; it's very good in the deck. It's just that there really isn't much room for them. Nest Balling for Passimian or Remoraid seems good or really any Pokémon that's not Shaymin-EX.

Level Ball:

Playing this ball isn't the worst, either, since it can search out every Pokémon except Shaymin-EX, Mew-EX, Zebstrika, and Passimian. That still leaves plenty of options especially Vespiquen since it's the deck's main attacker aside from Passimian.

Escape Rope:

Another switching option that can put the opponent in an odd situation, having to bring up Pokémon they really don't want active and odds are it's getting KOd.

Revive:

It might seem odd playing Revive in this deck but is it? Passimian get's use with Revive and so does Blitzle as well as many other Pokémon. This way you don't have to rely on Super Rod plus Ultra Ball to find whatever Pokémon you need that's not an evolution.

Here is a Vespiquen and Friends video made by fellow member Rahul Reddy, of The Chaos Gym. I based my list off of his, but you will see some differences if you compare the two.

You can see both lists are quite similar with Rahul opting to go with Oranguru over Octillery as well as having Tauros-GX as a tech attacker. As for myself, I decided to play a Teammates. Some other changes are just certain counts so nothing too crazy.

Closing Thoughts

That will conclude this short article on Vespiquen and Friends. I hope you enjoyed reading this little piece, as I will have one more before Anaheim Regionals. I hope I can give you another deck idea that you may not have seen or thought of yet, so you can get even closer to finding what you want to play come Anaheim. As I mentioned, this deck has a lot of great matchups, but of course, it too has bad ones. You take the loss to Volcanion; however, you can take wins against some of the strongest decks in the format still, such as Darkrai-EX and Yveltal/Garbodor as well as M Rayquaza-EX. I'll definitely be at Anaheim Regionals next weekend so be sure to say hello if you see me. Good luck to those attending Anaheim. I'm excited to see some new decks and what will be at the top tables with everyone being on the same page. With that said, don't forget to check out The Chaos Gym on YouTube and Twitch for updates and player interviews, as well as live streaming from Grafton Roll and Rahul Reddy.

As always, be sure to check out Team ARG's Pokémon page on Facebook for tons of deck lists and interviews from some great players. If you have any questions about this list--or deck in general--then please feel free to leave me a comment below or message me on Facebook and I'll be sure to get to them as soon as possible. As usual, if you enjoyed reading this article, then please consider giving it a thumbs up. If you want to see a specific type of article or topic next time, don't hesitate to give me ideas down below and I'll consider them, or if you have any other deck ideas and want to see an analysis on it, then, by all means, post it and I'll take a look. As always, keep an eye out for more articles to come. Until next time!

-Jose

[+13] okko


 

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