Good morning Trainers! Battle Styles is well on its way to becoming a developed format, and there have been a few decks that seem to be rising to the top. Eternatus is shaping up to be one of the top decks alongside ADP and Rapid Strike Urshifu. Mad Party is also rising to be one of the best single Prize Card decks in Standard, with Blacephalon style decks on the come-up as well. Throwing all of that out the window, an interesting deck has popped up seemingly out of nowhere in the form of Orbeetle. Pioneered seemingly by Azul Griego, he innovated a list on his YouTube channel that has some polarizing matchups in the format and is very interesting if you’re looking to pick up a fun deck that can take down some top dogs. With very few official tournaments going on globally, many of the online tournaments are tending to be just for guts and glory. That being said, if you’re looking to jumpstart a fun time, try out the list below because it is quite amusing announcing Eerie Beam multiple times in a turn! Without further explanation, let’s take a dive into Orbeetle VMAX, one of the most fun decks in Standard!

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Strategy


The strategy behind this Pokémon online deck is a unique one in comparison to the rest of the Standard format. It is a deck that doesn’t play any Dedenne-GX with that Dedechange ability, there isn’t any Crobat V to draw additional cards, and there aren’t any Professor’s Research or Marnie in here. So how do we set up? What cards do we play in place of them? Well, we want just to hit and run, of course! Orbeetle is a special deck mostly due to Orbeetle being the only VMAX in Standard format (to my knowledge) that has an ability. This ability can spread one damage counter on each of your opponent’s Pokémon (if Orbeetle VMAX is in the active spot), but keep in mind this isn’t an attack, and you can do this an infinite amount of times during your turn. If you were to setup four Orbeetle VMAX in play and could find an ample amount of switching cards, you could theoretically use Eerie Beam up to four times before attacking. That’s 40 damage on each of your opponent’s Pokémon! That is quite significant if you ask me.
Orbeetle VMAX boasts 310HP, which generally means it won’t be getting OHKO’ed by most Pokémon. That’s where our Supporter cards come in – we can just keep healing our Orbeetle VMAXs with Cheryl and Mallow & Lana over and over while slowly whittling down opposing Pokémon with our ability. Then, when we have enough damage on our opponent’s Pokémon, we strike with G-Max Wave for a ton of damage. This strategy is very effective against decks that struggle to OHKO an Orbeetle VMAX or use many resources to get their attacks off. We don’t want to play any Dedenne-GX or Crobat V as liabilities on our bench, so instead, we use Snorlax with the Gormandize ability – it can draw us cards, only gives up a single Prize Card, and also fits in with our theme of healing and running. Whenever we need to take a turn off to rest, we can also send up one of our Lillie’s Poké Doll into the action for a turn. Let’s peek at the list for a moment.


Deck List


Pokémon - 11
4 Orbeetle V VIV 20
4 Orbeetle VMAX VIV 21
3 Snorlax VIV 131

Trainer Cards - 37
4 Cynthia & Caitlin CEC 189
4 Cheryl BST 123
3 Mallow & Lana CEC 198
2 Bird Keeper DAA 159
2 Guzma & Hala CEC 193
1 Grimsley UNM 199
1 Boss's Orders SHF 58
4 Quick Ball SSH 179
4 Lillie's Poké Doll CEC 197
4 Tag Call CEC 206
2 Reset Stamp UNM 206
1 Tool Scrapper RCL 168
2 U-Turn Board UNM 211
3 Turffield Stadium CPA 68

Energy - 12
4 Capture Energy RCL 171
4 Aromatic Grass Energy VIV 162
4 Weakness Guard Energy UNM 213


Key PTCG Cards



4-4 Orbeetle VMAX – Our main attacker for the deck, and an absolute beast at that! Orbeetle is a Grass-type VMAX, which is effectively similar to a Stage 1 Pokémon. It boasts a massive 310HP, which will allow it to take hits from other VMAX Pokémon and Tag Teams. Not many Pokémon will be able to OHKO it, except Fire-type Pokémon (but we’ll get into some stuff we have to combat our weakness later). Single energy is required for our Retreat Cost, hence why we have opted to include U-Turn Board in our deck. Orbeetle is a unique VMAX because it has an ability that allows us to put damage counters on each of the opponent’s Pokémon, provided it is in the active slot. We play many switching cards in this deck and a ton of cards to ensure we setup multiple Orbeetle in a game. Ideally, we can get off anywhere from 8-12 Eerie Beams in a game before we begin our ambush of attacks. That’s 80-120 damage on each of our opponent's Pokémon by the end of the game! That can kill low HP Pokémon such as Galarian Zigzagoon (70HP), Jirachi (70HP), Mew (60HP), and others. Netting free Prize Cards like this at the end of the game can make a massive difference in our game plan. Followed up by Orbeetle VMAX’s attack, G-Max Wave, you hit 50 damage + 50 more damage for each energy card attached to the Defending Pokémon. If you take a Pokémon like Arceus & Dialga & Palkia (ADP) Tag Team GX, you can hit them for 200 damage, provided they have three energy attached! This card packs a punch, and its attack is perfect for sweeping the opponent in the late game. The Orbeetle V isn’t too important in this deck, but just know it can hit and run in a pinch behind a Lillie’s Poké Doll if need be. Orbeetle VMAX is searchable via Turffield Stadium.


3 Snorlax – Our main source of a draw, we only really want to use two Snorlax in any given game because we want our opponent to have to go through two Snorlax and two Orbeetle VMAX in a game for a combined total of eight Prize Cards! Snorlax is a great pivot and an exceptional hand filler after a devastating Marnie. Considering our Tag Team Supporter cards discard cards from our hand, Snorlax does a great job getting us back to seven cards with its Gormandize ability. We won’t ever retreat Snorlax because it has a heft retreat cost, but we can move it out of the Active slot with cards like Bird Keeper or Mallow & Lana. Snorlax is also our go-to on the first turns of the game because we can search it out with Quick Ball or Capture Energy.


4 Cynthia & Caitlin – This Support card is one of the most important pieces of this deck’s strategy. Being able to not only draw cards but recycle Supporters from the discards means you can use technically eight copies of Cheryl per game! That is an absurd concept to me. It also allows you to recycle other key Supporters such as Boss’s Orders.


4 Cheryl – This is the best card in the deck, hands down. Cheryl allows us to shift between our Orbeetles and eventually heal multiple of them at once. Sure, it discards energy off of them, but who cares when you are slowly putting damage onto the opponent’s side with your ability? Who needs energy in play when you can just use Eerie Beam? Cheryl can be recycled consistently with Cynthia & Caitlin and is integral to our strategy. I personally like to retreat my Pokémon before using Cheryl, sending up a pivot Pokémon for the following turn.


3 Mallow & Lana – This Supporter card is a slightly more situational version of Cheryl that can massively benefit you in certain matchups. Mallow & Lana strictly heals 120 damage (and provides a pivot switch into another Orbeetle for more Eerie Beams), whereas Cheryl heals all damage and discards all energy from Evolution Pokémon. Mallow & Lana is great for when you want to keep those energies in play for attacking purposes and helps to offset numbers for your opponent (sometimes turning a 2HKO into a 3HKO). It is also searchable via Tag Call, which is huge in its own right.
 
2 Bird Keeper – A draw Supporter that acts as a switching card, which can help you get off more Eerie Beams in a single turn. It can also help you to move Snorlax from the active slot.

2 Guzma & Hala – This card is great for searching out any of our energy from within the deck, it can fetch us Turfield Stadium (which helps us setup more Orbeetle), and it can also get us our U-Turn Boards! This is just a functional setup card that is searchable via Tag Call.

1 Grimsley – This is a cute card that can catch our opponent off guard. It can sponge damage off of one Pokémon and place it on another to make surprise Kos possible with G-Max Wave. Recyclable via Cynthia & Caitlin.

4 Lillie’s Poké Doll – This Item serves as a pivot for Orbeetle but also allows you to an additional turn to setup without giving up a Prize Card. This card is perfect for this deck’s strategy and buys you extra time to play Supporters.

4 Capture Energy – This is such a large consistency booster in our deck since we don’t play very many aggressive draw cards. This can help us set up more Orbeetle V or search us out a Snorlax if we need to draw more cards. Since it is a Special Energy, it is searchable via Guzma & Hala.

4 Aromatic Grass Energy – This card is mostly to satisfy Orbeetle VMAX’s Grass Energy requirement. However, it also blocks us from being affected by Special Conditions. Raichu & Alolan Raichu can paralyze our Orbeetle using Tandem Shock, so removing paralysis can be clutch at times. Also, being immune to poison can be helpful against a Galarian Slowbro V + Toxicroak combo. Since it is a Special Energy, it is searchable via Guzma & Hala.

4 Weakness Guard Energy – This card helps us to increase our matchup against Fire-type Pokémonsuch as ReshiZard, Blacephalon, Heatran-GX, and Victini VMAX. Without Weakness Guard Energy, we would allow our opponent to OHKO our Pokémon with a single attack, which obviously destroys the entire strategy of our deck. Since it is a Special Energy, it is searchable via Guzma & Hala.


Conclusion


Looking for a deck that you can use to outplay your opponents with? Orbeetle VMAX is your go-to! I love the deck, and it is probably the coolest deck out of the newest expansion. There’s still so much to learn about this deck, so load up some PTCGO codes, make some trades, and give this list a shot!

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