– Rebel Clash
June 22, 2020
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.
At last, we get to review the final Dynamaxed starter of Galar: Inteleon V-Max. Inevitably, it has to be compared with Lapras V-Max because it has similar stats; both of them has 320 HP with Lightning Weakness. While Lapras only has one attack that could be pumped into ridiculous levels, Inteleon has two attacks that dealt flat damage.
Hydro Snipe costs a single water energy for sixty damage, and you may put an Energy card from your opponent’s Active Pokemon into their hand, assuming it hasn’t been Knocked Out. This effect is optional, if you do use this effect, your opponent has to waste their manual attachment for the turn unless their deck can let them attach unlimited energies. But then since the energy goes back to your opponent’s hand, they could choose to attach it to a different Pokémon. Max Bullet costs WWC for 160 damage and also puts 60 damage on one of your opponent’s Benched Pokemon. This kind of attack used to be pretty popular; if Darkrai-EX’s Night Spear did a good job setting up future KOs, so can Max Bullet. It’s not always the best thing to do, however, if your opponent doesn’t have any Benched Pokemon, then that 60 snipe damage is useless because there’s nothing to target. Also 160 damage falls a bit short of 2HKOs against the biggest V-Max Pokemon.
Looking at Limitless, only one Inteleon V-Max deck placed 102nd place by Regan R on Limitless Online Series. This deck ran a similar engine to Lapras V-Max such that the deck ran 4 Jirachi and 2-2 Frosmoth line, dropping the Lapras line entirely in favor for a 4-3 Inteleon line. This deck is pretty straightforward, containing various general usage cards to being Inteleon out as soon as possible to dish out damage. Here’s a link for that specific decklist (https://limitlesstcg.com/decks/?list=4258).
Inteleon VMAX (SSH – Rebel Clash 050/192, 195/192) is today’s card, as promised. Yesterday, we looked at Inteleon V, and there’s a lot of overlap. Inteleon VMAX is also a [W] type. The amount of [W] Weakness isn’t huge in the metagame, but it isn’t non-existent. We haven’t seen a lot of other [W] decks make topcuts, even the massive topcuts from massive tournaments, so I don’t know how valuable compatibility with such things will prove. Anti-[W] effect exist, but probably won’t matter, while natural [W] Resistance simply does not exist.
The next obvious thing about Inteleon VMAX is… it is a Pokémon VMAX! Inteleon VMAX is worth three Prizes when KO’d, can be walled by Zamazenta V’s Ability, and anything that applies to Pokémon V also apply to it. VMAX is also a Stage, essentially a Stage 1 that doesn’t count as a Stage 1, and that certainly beats being a Stage 2, as regular Inteleon would be. Inteleon VMAX is also specifically a Dynamax card… which currently has no game relevant function. Lastly, all Pokémon VMAX so far have had massively more HP than their baseline counterparts, and may have better effects and/or other stats.
Inteleon VMAX sports 320 HP, 20 higher than the lowest VMAX scores, and 20 lower than the highest. It is a good score, hard to OHKO outside of Weakness. With Weakness, the [L] Type has crazy Energy acceleration and Electropower, so hitting 160 is pretty reasonable for such decks, and that’s bad for Inteleon VMAX. Any Resistance is better than none, but it also might be kind of broken with this much HP behind it, and most Pokémon have no Resistance, so it isn’t a bad thing. The Retreat Cost of [CC] is pretty typical; low enough you can probably pay it, but high enough you wish you didn’t have too.
Inteleon VMAX knows two attacks. “Hydro Snipe” costs [W] and does 60 damage, while also forcing your opponent to bounce an Energy attached to their Active Pokémon. Your opponent could just re-attach the Energy next turn, and if they needed to attach it to something else then Hydro Snipe could even backfire. However, most of the time you’ll set them back an attachment, and combined with the 60 damage (and Inteleon V’s HP), that’s good. Not great, though. For [WWC] Inteleon VMAX can use Max Bullet, dealing 160 damage to your opponent’s Active and 60 to one of their Benched Pokémon (you choose which Benched Pokémon). Again, this is good but not great; you’re 2HKOing most multi-Prize Pokémon while softening up something on the Bench.
Inteleon VMAX does seem better than Inteleon V. They do have a lot in common, only differing in name, Stage, HP, and the damage/effects of their attacks. Inteleon V is mostly something to attack with if you’re facing down a Zamazenta V: its Ability only works against VMAX, not Basic Pokémon V. Unless you’ve got a better alternate attacker, and you just might. Inteleon VMAX hasn’t shown up in any of the decks that made the top cut, at least I’ve read the results right. It never hurts to check for yourself. If I am right, I think I know why. New [W] Types are mostly [L] Weak, and we’ve had strong [L] Type decks for a while, like Pikarom and its many variants.
Plus, even if you’re running something like Frosmoth, why use Inteleon VMAX over Lapras VMAX? Its raw power easily outshines Inteleon VMAX’s technical prowess. Which isn’t to say that Inteleon VMAX is great as an attack not focused purely on damage; it is adequate if you need those exact qualities. In Expanded, I think you’ve got better options for massive walls of HP, Bench hits, and Energy denial, though not all in one package. Still not enough to make Inteleon VMAX worth the effort. Where Inteleon VMAX can be overwhelming is in the Limited Format. You’re already lucky to have pulled at least one of it and one of Inteleon V; you can risk running the two together without any other Basics, or run them in a mostly [W] deck.
Maybe I’m being too harsh on Inteleon VMAX, as a lot about it is good when viewed separately, or with only certain aspects of the card in mind. After Electropower (and some other bits of [L] support) leave the Standard Format, it may be worth revisiting. For now, though, it’s only really good in the Limited Format, the one you’re least likely to be playing.
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