Deeper into the Darkness – An Update On Eternatus VMAX and More

Hello PokeBeach readers and welcome back to another one of my articles! The Player’s Cup II qualification stage has wrapped up, as players are waiting to see who qualifies at this point. Congratulations to anyone who did, of course. Additionally, plenty of other events are already being held and growing every single day. This means that everyone will have plenty of chances to get their competitive Pokemon fill, and Arceus and Dialga and Palkia-GX will have plenty of victims to claim (just kidding…. kinda). Though I will say, the metagame has seen a lot of progression throughout the Player’s Cup, with many decks making a name for themselves. In my last article, I covered one of those in the form of Centiskorch VMAX / Magneton, a deck that Tord Reklev and others saw some success with. As for today’s article, I am going to be covering a deck that is not new to hype, Eternatus VMAX. This means taking a look at an updated Eternatus VMAX deck list in a pretty in depth manner, updating the tier list, and tackling the Standard format as a whole. Without further ado, let’s kick things off by creeping into the eternal darkness.

Updated Eternatus VMAX

Since my previous article on Eternatus VMAX, the deck has remained an absolute powerhouse and competitor for the BDIF title (Best Deck In Format). The deck has, however, changed in terms of how it should be built. In my last article on the deck, I expressed concern towards being able to beat Blacephalon, which I deemed as a threat at that point in time. However, Blacephalon has not seen nearly as much success as I expected it to at that point in time, so the space dedicated to improving that matchup can be used better. In my below list, which is not anything too special to be quite honest, I aimed to be as strong as possible against all of the tier one decks. One small note, I definitely recommend checking out my last article on Eternatus VMAX as well, assuming you are interested in playing with this deck any time soon. Despite being an outdated decklist, it has tons of useful information on this deck.

Pokemon (18)

4x Eternatus VMAX (SWSH3 #117)4x Eternatus V (SWSH3 #116)4x Crobat V (SWSH3 #104)4x Galarian Zigzagoon (SWSH1 #117)2x Hoopa (UNM #140)

Trainers (32)

4x Professor's Research (SWSH1 #178)4x Marnie (SWSH1 #169)4x Boss's Orders (SWSH2 #154)4x Quick Ball (SWSH1 #179)4x Scoop Up Net (SWSH2 #165)4x Great Ball (SM #119)3x Pokémon Communication (TEU #152)2x Vitality Band (SWSH1 #185)2x Switch (EVO #88)1x Tool Scrapper (SWSH2 #168)

Energy (10)

4x Darkness Energy (EVO #97)4x Hiding Darkness Energy (SWSH3 #175)2x Capture Energy (SWSH2 #171)

Changes from Previous Article

Removed

Hoopa (Darkness Ablaze)

Turns out this Hoopa is not good enough. It is not as good as the other Hoopa, which is what is was removed for, and I would probably include Spiritomb over it as well. The only issue with Spiritomb is it having to put itself at low HP and potentially falling victim to some Galarian Zigzagoon, which can be an issue in the mirror match.

1 Pokemon Communication

While I did remove one Pokémon Communication, four Great Ball did make their way into the deck to pretty substantially increase the amount of search cards overall. This was because the deck was actually not as fast as you may have thought it was just because of how many Basic Pokemon it needs to find within the first two turns. Additionally, finding an Eternatus V and attaching to it turn one is an absolute necessity for this deck, and finding an Eternatus VMAX near the start of turn two is important as well because it opens up your bench space to start filling it up right away. These things are crucial for attacking on turn two, which is the entire goal of this deck.

1 Switch

These are the common form of mobility found in decks nowadays, and nothing was wrong with the functionality of them in this deck. I found the third copy to not be as needed as much as I thought. Dark City was the better option for a little bit, but Switch ended up reigning supreme. Pikachu and Zekrom-GX has Chaotic Swell, but it is a little bit different because they will most likely knock out whatever Active Pokemon you have trapped there if it were to occur, meaning you would not be in need of a switching effect. The point where you will need real Switch effects is when dealing with Raichu and Alolan Raichu-GX, which will paralyze your Eternatus VMAX. This continues to be a trend where other decks can gain an advantage against you if your main mobility is Dark City. If Arceus and Dialga and Palkia-GX starts including Chaotic Swell in their deck, there will be times where you can’t move your Active whether that be due to a trapped Crobat V or simply not finding that Scoop Up Net for a pesky Galarian Zigzagoon. Hiding Darkness Energy does not help this situation either because you need to have two Energy on Eternatus VMAX on turn two, which means you don’t have time to attach to your Active Pokemon as well. The point is, Chaotic Swell decreases your mobility, which is very important when you are trying to respond to various threats.

2 Reset Stamp, Dangerous Drill, 2 Chaotic Swell

These were the defensive cards of the deck, that shined against Welder decks for the most part. The Dangerous Drill was a bit more versatile and can still be really good if found at the right time, but it is a super situational card and can not be relied upon, so it did not make the cut. Welder decks, mainly Blacephalon, are not worth dedicating all this space to when you can beat them without these card and could lose even with these cards. I did go over why these cards were strong as defensive tools against Blacephalon the last time I wrote about Eternatus VMAX, so feel free to go review that if you are wondering why these were in the deck to begin with.

3 Darkness Energy, 2 Capture Energy

These were removed from the deck as a way of changing up the Energy lineup, not just removing half of the Energy cards from the deck. The Energy count only decreased by one overall, as four Hiding Darkness Energy made their way into the deck as these exited. Capture Energy is still something that I think about all the time, as the effects of Hiding Darkness Energy and Capture Energy are both basically simple bonuses and not anything super amazing. The thing about including a bunch of Capture Energy is that it can get in the way of you attacking if you can only find Capture Energy, meaning you could whiff an attack by finding a Capture Energy instead of a Darkness Energy. The Energy lineup still has me thinking, but this is what I have for now.


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