“Bees are Endangered?” – A Follow Up on Vespiquen in Expanded

Hey there, Cut or Tap readers! Daniel here again, with a little report on my findings at St Louis Regionals.
With the tournament’s conclusion, we’ve been shown the complete and utter chaos that is Expanded. Good players did horrible while others pushed through, but for the most part the chaos of Day 2 was the result of those who managed to meet the stronger matchups throughout the first nine rounds of the event.
We saw Rahul Reddy pilot Volcanion to a strong 8-1 finish, where he took his only loss to Mega Rayquaza (pretty much an autoloss – I don’t see it being a winnable matchup under most circumstances). And we witnessed Alex Wilson (previous winner of Massachusetts Regionals) take a win with Mega Rayquaza yet again.
And lastly, we saw an influx of Toad/Decidueye, Vileplume/Decidueye and Vileplume/Lurantis which completely threw the meta for a loop and brought Grass Pokemon to the forefront of Expanded.
Moving forward, I’m almost positive we’ll see the nail in the coffin for Ghetsis. We’ll see plenty of Turn-1 hands deciding matchups now, even moreso than before, and we’ll see Hex Maniac carrying many decks to victory. I’d even go as far as to say that Wobbuffet and Garbodor might see more play! But before getting too far into the future, let me go over my personal tournament findings.
My list was subpar, as was my play, so I find an actual tournament report to be unfair to you readers. It is better to just share my changes and my process to reach the new list.
“Battle Compressor is WAY better than Klefki… lol”
Phinn has been posting articles here and there, fixing up a Vespiquen list in both formats. He is fresh off of a Top 16 finish in Anaheim, where all the good players flew out and participated. His Day 2 was decided by his own poor plays, and he hit matchups he could have avoided if he had just played better and not let the sleep get to him. This means so much to me; it shows that Vespiquen is a skill-intensive deck after all! Here’s a statement that I made all weekend and only Jeremiah Williams, Treynor Wolfe and other Vespiquen players agreed with:
Vespiquen has the ability to run hot and steal games while remaining a delicate and difficult-to-pilot deck.
I experienced this first-hand at St Louis Regionals, where I assumed I would just cheese my way through to Day 2, and I ended up having some of the hardest games I’ve ever played. Most of my games were cheesy, but you really have to respect the Bees. Let me share my list and then get into the updated one.
Pokémon – 29 Trainers – 27 Energy – 4
4 Combee AOR 4 Professor Sycamore 4 Ultra Ball 4 Double Colorless
4 Vespiquen AOR10 1 N 4 Battle Compressor
3 Flareon PLF 1 Lysandre 3 VS Seeker
3 Eevee AOR 1 Teammates 2 Special Charge
2 Herdier SM 1 Hex Maniac 1 Paint Roller
2 Lillipup SM* 1 AZ 1 Startling Megaphone
3 Shaymin EX ROS 1 Life Dew
1 Jirachi EX
3 Unown AOR
1 Wobbuffet PHF 2 Parallel City
1 Exeggcute PLF
1 Giratina promo
1 Tauros GX
*Would have been Lillipup BW (Pickup attack) but I own none!
This list was straight fire in my head, and straight garbage in application. Phinn explained to me the importance of 30 Pokemon, and I took that way too lightly. I actually changed the list a bit after the tournament and made it way more comfortable. I’ll go into that in a bit. For now, let me explain the changes. If you need an explanation of the list, I would take it straight from the horse’s mouth and go read Phinn’s article – he understands the deck way more than I do!
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