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Expanded Deck Tech: Blastoise VMax (Water Box)

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Meet the Blastoise VMax deck for the Expanded format, focused on dealing sniper damage on the opponent's Bench.

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Hello everybody. I'm Rodrigo, bringing news about the Pokémon TCG and its vast media. Today, we'll explore the Expanded format, where your imagination with deckbuilding possibilities are endless, as its legal cards goes back to the Black/White block expansions (from 2011) to the present day.

And with that, I'll bring some suggestions with the Kanto starters: Venusaur, Charizard and Blastoise.

Today, we'll talk about Blastoise VMax.

Blastoise VMax (Water Box)

Blastoise Expanded Decklist

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As with all the VMax mentioned in the previous articles, we have Blastoise as the main attacker, whose HP is very high and durable, and it also has sniper damage against targets on the opponent's bench.

The first attack, Grand Falls, for three water energies, deals 120 base damage and looks for 3 water energies in the deck, attach them to one of your Pokémon however you want (which is a hell of a speedup power).

Its second attack, G-Max Bombard, for four water energies, does 220 damage and targets two opponent's Benched Pokémon to deal 30 damage as a sniper.

It is with this sniper damage that we can resort to using the Telescopic Sight VIV 160 Tool, where it grants 30 more damage for sniper attacks to the opponent's Pokémon that are of GX or V-Type.

Recursive Pokémon

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- Radiant Greninja ASR 46 has its Concealed Cards ability, which makes you discard an energy card from your hand to draw 2 cards from the top of the deck.

In addition, it also serves as a sniper attacker with its Moonlight Shuriken attack, where for two water and colorless energies, it does 90 damage discarding two energies to hit two of the opponent's Pokémon, and of course, if those two Pokémon are some GX or V and are on the Bench, this damage can increase with Telescopic Sight VIV 160, up to 120 damage.

- Volcanion ◇ FLI 31 has the ability Jet Geyser, which means that at least once on your turn, you can discard a Water Energy in your hand to pull an opponent's Benched Pokémon into active position, practically like a Boss's Orders RCL 154.

In addition, its attack also serves as a sniper function. Sauna Blast, for three water energies, does 100 damage and 20 damage to all opponent's Benched Pokémon, and of course, again, if there is any GX or V present on the opponent's field, the Telescopic Sight VIV 160 grants 30 more damage, dealing 50 damage with this sniper.

- Lumineon V BRS 40 has its Luminous Sign ability, which, if played from your hand into your Bench, you search for a Supporter card from the deck. It's what Tapu Lele-GX CEL 60 did in the Sun/Moon era and Jirachi-EX PLB 60 in the Black/White era, only for the water archetype, which can be easily filtered in searches using Irida ASR 147 or Dive Ball PRC 125.

It can also be an attacker with Aqua Return, for one water energy and two colorless, dealing 120 damage, and it returns with all cards attached to it into your deck.

- Manaphy-EX BKP 32 has the ability Aqua Tube, which makes any Pokémon you control that has water energy have zero retreat cost.

Trainer Cards

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- Irida ASR 147 is used to search for a water Pokémon and an Item card from your deck, making it easier to search for resources, whether looking for Blastoise-VMax or even for the deck's recursive Pokémon to build your set-up, be it Lumineon-V to combo next turn with Supporter quest, Manaphy-EX for mobility, etc; in addition to picking up Items such as Dive Ball, Capacious Bucket or others that you might need under certain circumstances.


- Melony CRE 146 is like Welder UNB 189a, but for the water archetype: it attaches a water energy from the discard pile to one of your Pokémon V, in this case especially for Blastoise-V and Blastoise-VMax or Lumineon-V, and it draws 3 cards as well.

- Nessa VIV 157 recycles 4 cards in a combination of Water Pokémon and Water Energy from the discard pile to your hand.

- Roxanne ASR 150 is for the Late Game going to the End Game: if your opponent is three prize cards or less away from winning the game, both players shuffle their hands to the deck, and the opponent only draws two cards, and you draw six cards.

It is the deck's compensation to cause a counterattack due to the slowness of its assembly, since despite not being very explosive in terms of card advantage, it is quite predictable that it will take many knockouts in the match, and with this card, we can sabotage the opponent with a hand control for the final course of the game.

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- Dive Ball PRC 125 searches for any Water Pokémon, no matter if it's basic or evolution. It's just looking for the archetype, which is wonderful.

- Aqua Patch GRI 119 energizes a Water Energy in the discard pile to one of your Benched Water Pokémon.

It's basically the same thing Dark Patch LOR 216 does for dark Pokémon and Metal Saucer SSH 170 does for metallic Pokémon, except Aqua Patch GRI 119 is suited for the Water archetype.

- Trainers' Mail ROS 92 is an item card that makes you search the top 4 cards of your deck for any Trainer-type card, choose one of them, reveal it to your opponent and put it in your hand, and then, shuffle your deck.

- Capacious Bucket RCL 156 is used to search for two water energies in the deck and put them into your hand.

- Switch Raft DRM 62 serves as an improved Switch for the water archetype that when switched, this Pokémon recovers 30 HP, making the Pokémon last with this strategy, which matches the stadium that we'll talk below.

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- The Stadium Rough Seas PRC 137 is used to heal 30 points of damage between turns from your Water and Electric Pokémon.

Format Archetypes


We have an advantage against fire Pokémon. Despite not having high damage directly, being restricted to only 220 damage as its maximum potential, our deck abuses sniper damage, which is excellent, as it has versatility in dealing damage, leaving the opponent confused to deal with a situation where they have a Blastoise-VMax that powers up other Pokémon and still does this sniper damage.

Not to mention Radiant Greninja ASR 46 and Volcanion ◇ FLI 31, which does this function as a complement.


Despite the consistency of recursive Pokémon being all basic, unlike the others mentioned, such as Venusaur VMax and Charizard VMax, our deck is a bit slow due to the absence of a Professor's Research in the deck, so what really pays off is depending on Lumineon V BRS 40 to fetch Trainers from the deck, such as Irida.


Hand control decks that run Judge FST 235, Marnie SSH 169, and late-game control cards like Roxanne ASR 150 and N VI 92 can be an issue, but given the absence of cards that shuffle your deck, they can even help you if someone comes with this strategy.

Strategies with the electric archetype, such as Pikachu & Zekrom-GX TEU 33, Raichu & Alolan Raichu-GX UNM 54, Boltund V RCL 67, Vikavolt V DAA 60, Raikou V BRS 48, Tapu Koko VMAX BST 51, this considering ultra-rare; and as for single prizes, there are decks like Raikou VIV 50, Zeraora UNB 60 with synergy of Magnezone FLI 36 as an energizer, Raichu CEC 67 in Nuzzle decks. And of course, the fearsome item Electropower LOT 172 in any of these decks that increases damage by 30 each use of that item.

Decks that use cards that lock your Pokémon's abilities with Rule Box, such as Path to the Peak CRE 148.

Opponents who run any Pokémon with “Bench Protector” function such as Manaphy BRS 41, Mr. Mime BKT 97, Mr. Mime PLF 47 and Mew UNB 76 to prevent your snipers damage.


It's a reasonable deck, that if played right with Blastoise V evolving into Blastoise VMax as quickly as possible in the first few turns and discarding some water energy to use Melony for power-up, your game will flow incredibly well.

It's not the most powerful of the 3 starters in terms of massive damage or special conditions, but as said, it has the versatility of damage distribution, which is something interesting and different (which could easily enter another list with Greninja VUnion!).

So, would you change something on the deck? Would you like to get to know an archetype better? Feel free to leave a comment below.