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TCG Jump: Featured Card- Blaziken EX

BlazikenA mew meta has exploded into the scene. Rotation has finally hit and several cards are leaving the Standard format. That leaves plenty of room to experiment with explosive combos! We could see a fury of Pokemon ready to take the spot as the best deck in format. Pair that up with a new set that is ready to scorch the competition. It is an exciting time for the Pokemon TCG as we will see an eruption of decks attempting to blaze a trail in a new meta.

This week’s card is no different. It has been on the back burner for the last few months but now it could actually blaze with pride. A new set has came out and this card could benefit from all the explosive cards in it. That is why we are going to be featuring the Black Star Promo, Blaziken EX!

Blaziken EX is a Black Star Promo that has 170 HP. It is a Fire type Basic Pokemon with a weakness to Water and two energy retreat cost. The first attack that Blaziken EX has is called Fist of Focus. This attack cost a Fire and one other energy. Fist of Focus does 30 damage and allows you to attach an energy from your discard to Blaziken EX. Blaziken EX’s second attack is called Flare Storm and cost one Fire and three other energy. It does a base 100 damage and allows you to flip a coin for every Fire energy attached to Blaziken EX. You get to do an additional 20 damage for every heads you get.

The Pros
Max EliThe best thing that Blaziken EX has going is that it is a Fire type Basic Pokemon. It can take advantage of a few things thanks to it being a Fire type and Basic.

One of those things that combos well with Blaziken EX is Max Elixir. If you have a Blaziken EX on your bench then you can simply play Max Elixir to attach an energy to Blaziken EX. You can then attach a Fire energy from your hand in order to use Fist of Focus on your first attacking turn.

If you want to boost Blaziken EX’s attack power even more then you can attach a Fighting Fury Belt. This card can only be attached to Basic Pokemon which Blaziken EX is. This makes that first attack go up to 40 damage. This is simply another advantage that Blaziken EX can use thanks to it being a Basic.

Lastly, if you want to boost Blaziken EX’s attacking power even more then you can pair it up with Volcanion EX which was recently release in Steam Siege. If you use Volcanion EX with Blaziken EX because Blaziken EX is a Fire and Basic Pokemon. If you use Volcanion EX’s Steam Up ability then it will give Blaziken EX’s attack an addition 30 damage boost. That will make that Fist of Focus hit 60 damage plus 10 more if you have a Fighting Fury Belt on Blaziken EX.

Volcanion EX’s ability combos well with Blaziken EX’s Fist of Fury. If you want to use Steam Up then you need to discard a Fire Energy. You can then attach it to Blaziken EX by using Fist of Fury which will get you closer to using Flare Storm. All you need to do after that is simply attach a Fire energy from your hand to do 100 damage and more.

The Cons
M Ray EXOne of the things that Blaziken EX has against it is that it takes too much set up. If you are trying to hit for at least 100 damage with Flare Storm then it won’t be until your second or third turn. That is only if you hit an energy with Max Elixir, are able to get a Fire energy in your discard and have one in your hand. If one of those things do not happen then you are stuck hitting another 30 to 70 damage. Even worst, if you do get to use Flare Storm then you may not even get the knock out. This makes Blaziken EX kind of slow in a game where people are trying to hit hard and fast.

There is a silver lining in all of this and that is the uncertainly of the meta. A lot of decks were lost or have lost things due to rotation. There is some speculation about what will be good in the post rotation so maybe what was consider slow in pre-rotation will be consider speedy in post-rotation. Though you may not be fast enough to out speed a M Rayquaza EX.

What may turn off people from Blaziken EX is that Flare Storm all depends on coinflips. If you are lucky and get all heads when you use Flare Storm and have four Fire energy attached to Blaziken then you get to hit 180 damage. That will normally be enough power to knock out an EX Pokemon. Though you can not always be that lucky. If you are going to try to get a knock out then you will need to do some prior damage by using Fist of Fury. That will help in your first knock out but you can not afford to do that with your second knock out who will have full HP. You will either need to start setting up anther Blaziken EX or a different Pokemon. That could lead to some potential bad situations.

How to Use It
Volcanion EXHow do we play Blaziken EX in a new and exciting Standard format? Lets take advantage of everything it could use thanks to it being a Fire and Basic Pokemon.

First off, don’t use M Blaziken EX. It doesn’t have a Spirit Link and is not worth using. It is easier to just use Blaziken EX because it has a lot more options.

One of those options is Max Elixir which allows you to attach another Fire energy onto Blaziken EX. You do not want to start with Blaziken EX in the active because then you can’t attach to it via Max Elixir. That is why maybe you want to run a few Float Stone so you can get your active Pokemon out of the active. Once you get an energy on to Blaziken EX via Max Elixir then you can put Blaziken EX in the active and attach a Fire energy from your hand to use Fist of Focus.

You want to explode with your first Fist of Focus. That is why you want to run a few Volcanion EX in your deck and plenty of Fire. That way you can simply discard a Fire energy to use Steam Up and make Blaziken EX hit for 30 more damage for each Fire energy you discard for each of your Volcanion EX. If you can discard three Fire energy from three different Volcanion EX then you are hitting for an addition 30 damage to your base 30 attack. That is 120 damage for two energy! You will then get to attach an energy from your discard to Blaziken EX to help set up Flare Storm.

Volcanion EX also helps give Blaziken EX a safety net for when you get tails on Flare Storm. You may not hit heads on all your coinflips for Flare Storm. So the best you can hit for is 100 damage which isn’t bad but not good for the amount of energy you used to power it up. Though if you discard Fire energy to use Volcanion EX’s Steam Up then you can boost up Flare Storm’s 100 damage to 130. That way you will not have to rely on coinflips as much to dish out heavy damage.

If you want to boost up Blaziken EX with extra HP and damage then attach a Fighting Fury Belt. That will give Blaziken EX 210 HP and let you hit harder with Flare Storm. If you can hit for at least 140 damage with Flare Storm’s base damage and Steam Up’s extra 30 then that isn’t bad.

Things are heating up in the Standard format with a new rotation. Blaziken EX may not be on anybody’s radar and can really set things ablaze. If you want to do something different while also blazing a trailer then go give Blaziken EX a try. You may find that this card is hotter then you expected.

Good luck in all your testing for the new format!

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