"The Expanded Expose" – Looking at the post-Ban World of Expanded and A Suite of Decks to Test


This is the companion discussion topic for this article.


How about Despair Ray Mega Gardy w the new Giratina?


Can you run the Shock Lock without Beaches? I don’t know anyone who has any, let alone 4, so I’m not sure how viable this would be. Thanks!


Definitely haven’t thought about it at all since there isn’t a major Expanded event in that format until December, but it seems like an interesting angle.

I would not do this.


Good point about December! That deck idea was my first thought when I saw that Giratina but it is a ways off for sure.


Hello crazy! I’m nuts, and I’m so sick of Fighting types dictating three types can’t be played (unless they’re crazy good for consistency, ah-hem…) that I’m going to the shadows with my favorite Pokemon. Thanks Chris!!


This was a really good write up imo, thanks for the great article! What do you think of Zoroark in the new expanded? Is there a specific reason that you didn’t include a list for it in today’s articles?


These will certainly be useful. Thanks for the insightful article, Christopher. That Darkrai list is probably the most entertaining thing I’ve seen this week-- Hydreigon, what a legend.

I do want to bring a couple of points up for Archie’s Blastoise, actually! Playing two Keldeo should preclude the inclusion of Aurorus-EX, since you can just bounce between Rush Ins to escape the paralysis lock, and with the amount of Field Blower likely to be floating around for Garbotoxin I wonder how useful Fighting Fury Belt will actually be. I think Muscle Band is worth considering to require only two heads flips to OHKO Garbodor GRI, which, as you note, is a menace-- and it retains the ability to OHKO the prevalent 70 HP basics like Sableye, Trubbish, Rockruff et al with one heads flip.

And some questions, if I may:

  • In the FF mailbag week before last, you mentioned Zoroark didn’t impress you in general (and the list absence here is notable), and then clarified to me in the replies that Sudowoodo was “essentially unanswerable.” I did notice the offhand mention of Zoroark/Lycanroc/AMuk in the article, at least, and Alolan Muk is definitely the go-to way to circumvent it (it’s been in my post-ban list since Day 1), so I don’t know how much truth that statement actually has… Has your opinion on Zoroark shifted at all in the last two weeks, and what would you say to someone who’s currently weighing up the fox in some form as a serious choice for Portland?

  • Greninja loses nothing from the bans (apart from maybe Wally in some builds), retains all its old tricks and is definitely a good example of “budget competitive archetype” in the format, but as we all know, it’s not the picture of consistency, especially in the face of an enigmatic metagame. Do you expect people to forge on with it regardless, or will the potential prevalence of Giratina in the face of Trevenant’s return have people leaving it at home? Somewhere in between?

  • Spitball: Item lock. Do you think there might be anything to Noivern-GX? Sure, it’s not a basic like Toad or passive like Trev (or Plume, to whatever extent that might exist), but between Double Dragon Energy, Noibat FLI + Shining Celebi/Shrine of Memories, sharing an energy type with Garbodor GRI (hello Blend GPRD), all the new Dragon support and having the option to effectively Chaos Wheel built in… It feels like there’s something there. Am I actually the crazy one here, or is it worth exploring?


Travis has you covered today.

Travis is covering today, but I’ll address in Flyer tomorrow.

Probably will be played, but I still believe it’s a poor choice.

There’s a lot of interesting stuff to think about there for sure. A GX makes me very leery, but this is a decent thought to test.


Perhaps intentional… The Darkrai list has 59 cards. Thinking about that one field blower for Garb.


I’m pretty sure there are 60, but a Field Blower could be good.