Hi everyone, my name is Joshua Vanoverschelde, also known as ZapdosTCG, and today we will talk all about Victini VMAX! As you all know, it is a wonderful and underrated card from Battle Styles. After a couple of weeks, Victini VMAX seems to be winning more than any other VMAX archetype out there. Why? That's what we're gonna be talking about today.


Well, to start things off, it has an amazing base V Pokémon that came out in the Sword & Shield set, Victini V. Its attack, Spreading Flames, allows you to attach 3 energies from your discard to your Pokémon in any way that you like. This is an interesting attack that helps you set up some energies on the field, and Victini VMAX also has access to it. It’s ideal for stuff like Heatran GX to come with a powerful Hot Burn GX or how about to set up a Charizard & Reshiram GX, quite a nice amount of ideas! These attacks are only used in emergencies, seeing as we still have the broken supporter Welder by our side. The Victini V also comes packed with Energy Burst, which dishes out 30 damage for all energies attached to both active Pokemon. This attack can come in the clutch against stuff like Centiskorch VMAX with a ton of energy. Or how about against Pikachu & Zekrom GX that used a Full Blitz and now has 6 energies attached!

In my conclusion, the Victini V is already great to put up some pressure, but the Victini VMAX is just a super aggressive card in a metagame full of VMAX Pokemon. Let me explain why.

Victini VMAX comes packed with the attack Max Victory, which deals 100 damage, but if the opponent is a V Pokemon, it deals 220 damage instead. And that is enough to OHKO 99% of all evolving V Pokemon out there! Think about Eternatus V, Dragapult V, Centiskroch V, Rapid Strike Urshifu V, and many more! We can OHKO them before they are able to evolve into their VMAX form. That makes this deck very dangerous for all those VMAX archetypes.

The Victini VMAX deck is also a deck that wants to go first. This is the first Welder deck that doesn't actually need Welder to succeed. That's why the lists typically run a couple of Research in there as well. The only thing you need on turn 1 is a Victini V and an attachment to it. With Giant Hearth in the format, that's a piece of cake. We have draw support Pokemon like Dedenne GX, Crobat V, and even the new Kricketune V, which also protects you from Marnie, and Reset Stamp, which rocks!

Victini VMAX might not have the most HP out of the VMAX family, but it's definitely a tier 1 deck, in my opinion. Because the game could be over before you know it when knocking out an evolving V Pokemon. The deck typically relies on 4 copîes of Boss's Order and a couple of Escape Rope to gust up those Evolving V Pokemon. And that's not all with the high amount of fire support out there: Welder, Giant Hearth, Fire Crystal, etc... The deck can perform really well. The only downside I see is the Tag Team GX matchups, but for those, you can rely on good old Charizard & Reshiram GX or Heatran GX (if you can find Welder, of course). Other techs you might think about are Ninetales, Volcanion, and Blacephalon. This is a different variant of Victini VMAX, but as mentioned, because of the high amount of Fire Support, you can make it work.


Matchups


Favorable Matchups

Now that we talked about the main card, let's talk about some matchups. Which matchups are favorable and which ones are unfavorable? You'll hear it right away!

First off, it should be mentioned that all VMAX decks are favorable because of the strategy mentioned earlier. You go first, attach to Victini V, turn 2 evolve, attach second energy, and use Boss's Order to OHKO an evolving V Pokemon. If the opponent happens to evolve before that, you are still able to 2 shot them—highly efficient damage output.
We also can’t forget we are a Fire deck, so matchups like LucMetal are also pretty good!

Considering most of the Victini VMAX decks run Giratina or Fan of Waves. I would say the VMAX deck that has the best chance would be the Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX as it typically also plays Cheryl and can heal off damage while spreading with G-MAX Rapid Flow, but most of the time, you secure that matchup by being the faster deck.

Favorable Matchups:

Centiskorch VMAX
Corviknight VMAX
Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX
Single Strike Urshifu VMAX
LucMetal

Even Matchup

As for even matchups, there isn't a lot, to be honest. Either you go full swinging winning against VMAX, or you lose against 1-prize Pokemon. The only close matchup is the one against ADP Zacian, to be honest. Against that deck, you can use tech in Charizard &Reshiram GX to help the matchup or just go blazing with a Heatran GX. Also, with Escape Rope, you can sometimes take a cheeky KO before they can use Altered Creation GX. Try to start by only slapping down one 2-prize Pokemon because if you slap more of those, the game could be over with 2 Boss's Orders from the opponent. Early pressure is the key in this matchup. Don't forget you can also go around ADP and gust up their Zacian V, Eldgoss V, and Crobat V to win the game.

Even Matchup:

ADP Zacian V


Unfavorable matchups

And now we have come to the Unfavorable matchups. In my opinion, almost every one-prize deck is terrible for Victini VMAX to face. The card is designed for hunting down V Pokemon. You could go slap damage with your 2-prize Pokemon, Victini V, Heatran GX, Cramorant V, etc... But you will still lose the prize race.

Decidueye now plays Weak Guard Energies and Mallow & Lana, which means even if you tech in 1 or 2 Volcanion. The game ends when they get out a Decidueye. Cards like Fan of Waves could definitely help you out as well as early game donks (if they don't get out a second basic Pokemon)

There's not a lot to say about the Blacephalon matchup. Victini VMAX typically doesn't play Marnie and/or Reset Stamp, so that Blacephalon can overrun you with FireBall Circus for OHKOs.

Mad Party is also something you don't like to see. They 2 shot your Victini VMAX and OHKO, your 2-prize Pokemon, so the only way you win is by using Cramorant Vearly game to OHKO their Dedenne GX. I hope you don't get one shot. Take another KO and then go swinging with Charizard & Reshiram GX (if you are even playing that). The upgrade in prize cards is hard here because we cannot OHKO a Dedenne GXwith Victini VMAX, and they typically run more Dedenne GX over Crobat V in that deck.

Spiritomb is an older archetype that has won the LimitlessTCG Weekly event, so it should not be taken lightly. It has Spikemuth and Jynx to stack up huge damage on Spiritomb to slap 160+ damage averagely per turn. Thanks to their switching cards Escape Rope, Bird Keeper, Switches, etc... Just a solid one-prize deck that we don't stand a chance against.

Then there are the Tag Team GX matchups where we don't slap weakness against PikaRom and MewMew decks. Against PikaRom, I suggest you use the mentioned Charizard & Reshiram GX to KO Boltund V. I hope they don't land a Crushing Hammer and then Double Blaze their Tag Team. So try to go first in that matchup so you can have the first attachment onto your Charizard & Reshiram GX already.

For the MewMew Matchup, the same story uses your GX based attackers to deal with their Pokemon. Cramorant Vcan be a nice win-condition if they have Dedenne GX on board! Also, the Heat Fire Energy helps you out of range for Flare Blitz GX for the Charizard GX (an attack that MewMew Welder decks like to use combined with Galarian Zigzagoon to OHKO you).

Lastly are the Water-type matchups. These can be quite difficult to deal with as they OHKO all of our Pokemon. Cramorant V can two-shot if needed, and adding a Dubwool V is also nice, but you probably don't have the space for that. My strategy. Try going after their Snow in the early game (assuming they only get 1 on the field turn 1) with your high amount of Boss's Order, and then try to OHKO their evolving V Pokemon. IF they managed to get out 2 Snom, just gust their Evolving V Pokemon and hope they don't get Frosmoth and many energies. Super hard matchups for sure.

Unfavorable Matchups:

Decidueye
Blacephalon
Mad Party
Spiritomb
PikaRom
MewMew archetypes (Welder / Lightning)
Lapras VMAX
Inteleon VMAX

The final verdict: Victini VMAX is broken against V decks and will only get better when time goes on. When rotation happens, the difficult GX matchups will go away, and a couple of 1-prize decks that are good right now also will rotate (Spiritomb & Blacephalon). One thing is clear. The future looks really bright for Victini VMAX. Even with the loss of Welder, this deck can still survive because of the low maintenance. I predict many more powerful VMAX decks will come out like Calyrex, for example, and those basic V Pokemon still go down thanks to a powerful Max Victory attack!


Decklist to get yourself started



Pokémon (17)

Trainers (31)

Energy (12)

4x Victini V SSH 254x Boss's Orders SHF 5811x Fire Energy
3x Victini VMAX BST 224x Welder UNB 1891x Heat Fire Energy
2x Crobat V SHF 442x Professor's Research SHF 60
2x Dedenne-GX UNB 574x Quick Ball SSH 179
1x Cramorant V SHF 544x Pokémon Communication TEU 152
1x Heatran-GX UNM 253x Escape Rope BST 125
1x Reshiram & Charizard-GX UNB 203x Switch SSH 183
1x Volcanion UNB 252x Fan of Waves BST 127
1x Eldegoss V CPA 52x Air Balloon SSH 156
1x Kricketune V BST 63x Giant Hearth UNM 197


Until the next time

Thanks for reading my article. Get some Battle Styles codes on PoTown Store right now to play Victini VMAX today, and check out my YouTube channel ZapdosTCG for daily competitive Pokemon TCG videos!