Will It Play In Peoria? The Advantages of Kyurem VMAX

Hello again everyone! After a fun start to the season in Baltimore, I, like many of you, are ready to hop into the Lost Origin meta. This weekend, we’ll open things up in the North American sphere with the Regional Championships in Peoria, followed by more events in October and November. The Lost Origin format has been enjoyable so far, as there has been a nice mix of new things to try. In my last article, I talked about some of the things you can do with the new Lost Zone engine, but that’s hardly been the only fun new deck. In this article, I’ll again be looking at one of the new decks from Lost Origin. In this one, I’ll be going over Kyurem VMAX, which has emerged as one of my top picks for Peoria. 

The Prospective Peoria Metagame

Before I can get into why I think Kyurem VMAX is a good play for upcoming events, I want to go over what other decks you can likely expect to see at those events. Between online events, the Singapore Regional League, and the massive Champion’s League Yokohama, we have started to see the meta develop to a point where we should be able to have a general idea of what the field will look like going forward. There have been a wide array of competitive decks, both new and old. Of the new stuff, we’ve seen some strong results from Lost Zone decks, both single-Prize variants and builds with Giratina VSTAR. Kazuki Kamegawa’s single-Prize “Lost Box” list has emerged as a top contender after getting second at Champion’s League Yokohama, and it’s seeing some strong online finishes from players in recent events. Other new decks that have seen good results include Kyurem VMAX, Hisuian Zoroark VSTAR, and Hisuian Goodra VSTAR. Of the already existing decks, Mew VMAX and Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR have remained great, as has Arceus VSTAR. Regigigas has also seen a bit of an uptick, thanks in part to its strong matchup against the single-Prize Lost Zone decks.

To sum that up, these are the decks that you should be the most prepared for:

  • Single-Prize Lost Box
  • Lost Zone Giratina VSTAR
  • Other Lost Box Decks
  • Kyurem VMAX
  • Palkia VSTAR
  • Mew VMAX
  • Arceus VSTAR decks (Giratina VSTAR, Goodra VSTAR, Inteleon)
  • Regigigas
  • Hisuian Zoroark VSTAR
  • Hisuian Goodra VSTAR

Now, these aren’t the only decks that you might encounter; as with recent formats, the Standard meta is quite diverse, and chock full of potential rogue decks. With that said, these are the decks that have seen enough play and are seeing enough “hype” to where there will be a reasonable chance that you will encounter them in Peoria. Predicting exactly which ones is naturally difficult — even with perfect knowledge of a tournament’s metagame, it’s still up to luck which matchups you’ll encounter — but by having a general idea of what to expect, you can plan accordingly. Of those decks, the Lost Zone decks are likely to be the most popular, followed by Kyurem VMAX and the existing trio of Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR, Arceus VSTAR, and Mew VMAX, followed further by the bottom three decks on the list. Again, this analysis is coming from the online tournament metagame and tournament results, as well as the results of Singapore and Champion’s League Yokohama. When preparing for Peoria, you’ll want to be sure to test against these decks, and you’ll definitely want to be playing a deck that is ready to take them on.

The Strengths of Kyurem VMAX

When it comes to taking on the meta, I am a believer in the potential of Kyurem VMAX. Kyurem VMAX has two big advantages in this format; it does big damage, and it has huge HP. In Baltimore, we saw a lot of tanky decks do well, as a lot of players hopped onto decks like Arceus VSTAR / Duraludon VMAX which could specifically take advantage of Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR’s inability to damage Pokemon beyond a certain point. Kyurem VMAX plays a lot like Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR does, but it no longer has that limitation. Kyurem VMAX can OHKO any Pokemon, regardless of how tanky you might make them.

There are games I’ve played with Kyurem where I’ve been able to discard five Energy in back-to-back turns to OHKO a pair of VMAXs, and that isn’t something that’s particularly hard to do. In Lost Origin, there have been some players that have tried to use Radiant Gardevoir to play a tanky game, but Kyurem VMAX can beat this strategy with no problem. Against VSTAR and VMAX decks, the ease with which Kyurem VMAX can get OHKOs is a huge point in its favor.

At the same time, Kyurem VMAX is quite tanky itself, especially in this meta where 280 and 310 are more common numbers to aim for. Giratina VSTAR might be able to OHKO Mew VMAX, Arceus VSTAR, and Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR, but it can’t do enough damage to OHKO Kyurem VMAX. Radiant Charizard can’t one-shot it, Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR can’t one-shot it, and Mew VMAX can’t one-shot it without a lot of resource usage. This puts Kyurem VMAX in a great position, where it’s both OHKOing everything, and not getting Knocked Out in return. Against V decks, this means that so long as they have to attack into Kyurem VMAX once, they’ll typically need four attacks to win, whereas Kyurem can win with only three. That’s before we even factor in using alternate attackers, like Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR, which can delay your opponent even further. 

Against the list above, Kyurem VMAX has the advantage against Giratina VSTAR, Origin Forme Palkia VSTAR, Arceus VSTAR, and Hisuian Goodra VSTAR. By playing techs like Empoleon V, it’s also possible to give it a strong matchup into all of the Lost Zone stuff, as well as a serviceable matchup against Regigigas. Mew VMAX and Hisuian Zoroark VSTAR can be tricky due to their speed and OHKO potential, but they are closer to even matchups than difficult ones. With this overall matchup spread, it’s clear that Kyurem VMAX has the potential to do very well. 

This concludes the public portion of this article.

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