Exploud – Vivid Voltage

Date Reviewed:  February 1, 2021

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 1.00
Expanded: 2.00

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.

Reviews Below:

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Exploud (SW – Vivid Voltage 137/185) is all about its first attack, “Round”.  Round costs [CC], so a single Twin Energy can cover the entire cost, as can Triple Acceleration Energy or (in Expanded) Double Colorless Energy.  This version of Round does 50 damage for each of your Pokémon in play that have Round.  Version?  Round is not new; I think it debuted on Seismitoad (BW – Noble Victories 24/101), which was later reprinted as Seismitoad (BW – Legendary Treasures 42/113).  Seismitoad’s version only did 30 per instead of 50, though the Energy cost was the same.  One of the unusual things about Round is that you sometimes benefit from Pokémon with worse versions of Round, just so you can have more Round Pokémon in play.  That minimum 50-for-two isn’t good, but just relying on Exploud alone can reach upwards of 200 damage… though each copy Prized reduces that damage cap.  Exploud also knows “Hyper Voice”, which does 120 for [CCC].  For a filler attack, Hyper Voice seems good.  If you have Triple Acceleration Energy hand but Exploud has no (or one) other Round Pokémon, go for the 120!

Exploud is a baseline Pokémon; it is only worth a single Prize when KO’d, doesn’t have any special Rules Boxes added to it, or anything like that.  It is, however, a Stage 2 Pokémon, and that hurts.  There’s no denying that Exploud would be much stronger as a Basic or Stage 1, all other aspects staying the same.  We’ll discuss the details of the evolution line more later, when we look at other Round Pokémon.  Exploud’s typing also isn’t much help.  You hit nothing for Weakness, though you also don’t have to worry about Resistance.  Unless you’re messing around in the Unlimited Format, anyway.  Anti-Colorless effects might be a problem, but not in Standard.  Unfortunately, Colorless support isn’t much help, either.  Powerful [C] Energy is nice in theory, but in practice, you’re probably not going to want to wait two turns to build an Exploud’s Energy.  I suppose you might attach to a Whismur before evolving the next turn, but that makes said Whismur a priority target for your opponent.

Exploud has 160 HP; this is a decent amount for a Stage 2, able to soak smaller attacks, and even the bottom half of what I consider mid-range.  Still, big Stage 2 Pokémon now have more like 170 to 190, and that would definitely have been better.  [F] Weakness means just 80 damage from a Fighting type scores a OHKO; fortunately, Fighting types just haven’t lived up to the hype I’ve been giving them.  No Resistance is the worst Resistance, but it also is the norm.  Nor does Resistance usually make a big difference; -30 against a single type sounds bad, but all a deck needs is some off-type attackers and its good.  A Retreat Cost of [CCC] is currently the worst.  Both Retreat Cost [CCC] and [CCCC] are too expensive to bother paying, and switching effects usually don’t care about Retreat Costs.  [CCCC] comes with access to cards like Buff Padding, though.

Okay: being a Stage 2 is bad, and so is having a Retreat Cost of [CCC].  The rest of Exploud is either neutral or varying degrees of “good”… but we need to talk about Whismur, Loudred, Rare Candy, and other Round Pokémon.  The good news is Whismur (XY – Fates Collide 80/124) is the only version that knows Round, the bad news is that it isn’t available in Standard.  You’re stuck with Whismur (SW – Vivid Voltage 135/185); at least its “Continuous Tumble” is a flip-until-tails attack good for 40 per heads and priced so that Twin Energy can cover it.  You’ll want to run both Rare Candy and Loudred (SW – Vivid Voltage 136/185); use the former field Exploud fast, but the latter for sustainability.  Loudred also knows Round, with its version doing 20 per Pokémon you have in play with Round printed on it, still priced at [CC].  Not something to attack with outside of emergencies, but it still fuels Explode’s strikes!

In Standard, nothing other than Exploud and Loudred know Round.  Maybe we’ll see some more Round Pokémon later; the last batch were spread out throughout the BW-series.  Being part of the same evolution line is both a “pro” and a “con”.  If they were separate, a Stage 2 line and Stage 1 line would eat up a lot of space, but being together means you’ll never have more than four instances of Round in play (they have to share Whismurs).  That means Exploud’s Round maxes out at 200 damage, with 100 or 150 being more likely due to KO’s and/or cards being Prized.  Not awful for just [CC] and on a 160 HP body, but not overly good since we’re still talking about a Stage 2 attacker.  Even at full power, it is also worth noting you’ll whiff on typical Basic Pokémon V HP scores.

In Expanded, I believe Exploud will have a hard time of it.  While I lack any current data, from what I’ve heard this is still a metagame with strong attackers, and sometimes vicious control strategies.  Exploud does get some help itself, though.  Again, Whismur with Round is legal… as are all the other older, Round Pokémon.  I wouldn’t recommend mixing them together, but there’s Exploud (BW – Plasma Storm 107/135).  It has the same name, Stage, typing, Weakness, and lack of Resistance as today’s Exploud. It has 20 less HP, so you’re not coming out ahead even though its Retreat Cost of [CCCC] means you could use Buff Padding with it.  For [CCC], its “Destructive Sound” reveals your opponent’s hand and discards all Items you find there… but its version of Round costs [CCCC] but still does only 50 per instance of Round you have in play.

You’re not doing any better with Tympole (XY – BREAKpoint 33/122), Palpitoad (BW – Noble Victories 23/101; BW – Legendary Treasures 41/113), and the aforementioned Seismitoad.  I had a budget/casual deck using it back in the day, but power creep has left it far, far behind.  Wigglytuff (BW – Next Destinies 79/99) is very similar to the above Loudred.  You get a Stage 1, 90 HP Colorless Pokémon with [F] Weakness, no Resistance, Retreat Cost [CC], Round for [CC] doing 20 per, and “Hypnoblast” for [CCC] doing 60 with a chance of leaving your opponent’s Active Asleep.  Not good in its own right, but it might just barely fit into the deck.  No Jigglypuff with Round makes me wonder if it is worth it.  There’s Meloetta-EX, who has a horribly overpriced version of Round, but if she’s just sitting on your Bench, that doesn’t matter.  As your opponent can force her Active with gusting effects, her 110 HP on a two-Prize Pokémon does matter.  It is also worth noting that, in Expanded, Ditto {*} can help get an extra Stage 1 Round Pokémon into play, and you might even risk running Sky Field so your maximum Round damage goes from 300 to 450!


  • Standard: 1/5
  • Expanded: 2/5

I think you might be able to make a casual or budget-friendly Round deck using today’s Exploud in Expanded.  Don’t worry about the other Exploud, Palpitoad, or Seismitoad.  Maybe risk Meloetta-EX, but I think you could just use Ditto {*}, Wigglytuff (with some Jigglypuff), Tympole, Loudred, and today’s Exploud.  Ditto {*} is probably valuable for other reasons, like a TecH Alolan Muk (Sun & Moon 58/149) to counter Sudowoodo (SM – Guardians Rising 66/145; Shiny Vault SV20/SV94).  If it ends up just being too many Pokémon, you might risk a slightly more defensive build; Scoop Up Net can bounce the entire line, and Big Charm lets Exploud fake having 190 HP.  If you can avoid giving up Prizes, 150 to 300 per turn for [CC] is actually still good… given our lowered hurdle.

vince avatar

So “Round” archetypes are still a thing, yet I don’t recall that strategy being competitive lately. Most of the time, this attack does damage based on the number of Pokémon you have in play that has the Round attack. In Exploud’s case, it does 50 damage for each Pokémon with the round attack, which caps at 300 for Standard (or 450 in Expanded). I don’t know any Basic Pokémon with the round attack in Standard, but there’s Meloetta-EX in Expanded who is a Basic, and can help fuel up damage output easily.


Standard: 1/5

Expanded: 2/5

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