November 04, 2020

Pikachu VMAX, Ninjask, Hitmontop, and More in the Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield—Vivid Voltage Expansion

Get a glimpse of the stunning artwork and memorable Pokémon in the most recent Pokémon TCG expansion.

Every card tells a story. While it's true that each Pokémon Trading Card Game card serves a functional purpose to advance gameplay, each card is also a work of art that captures a unique moment within the Pokémon world. Launching on November 13, the Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield—Vivid Voltage expansion boasts more than 180 cards and has many compelling, moving, and even haunting stories to tell. Here is a glimpse of a handful of the cards arriving in the Sword & Shield—Vivid Voltage expansion!

Pikachu VMAX

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Illustrator aky CG Works' Pikachu VMAX captures the energy that happens when a Pokémon Gigantamaxes in battle. While Pikachu's prowess in battle is well known across the Pokémon world, it's rare to see the adorable Mouse Pokémon as an intimidating figure. But with a whopping 310 HP and a G-Max Volt Tackle attack that can do up to 270 damage, this Pikachu VMAX should have opponents shaking in their boots. The colorful, frenetic swirls of energy and electricity orbiting the Pokémon are a fun artistic touch.


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Illustrator Sanosuke Sakuma's Hitmontop explores a rare moment in Pokémon TCG cards. While Pokémon are frequently depicted battling or training, they're rarely illustrated with their Trainers. Sakuma's Hitmontop adopts a fighting stance mirrored by Bea, the Stow-on-Side Gym Leader who specializes in working with Fighting-type Pokémon. Whether the duo is engaging in battle or merely training is not clear, but the relationship between the pair makes a fascinating and endearing focal point. It tells a story not often shared in Pokémon TCG cards.


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A good Supporter card played at the right moment can significantly impact gameplay. Illustrator take's Bea embodies all the intensity of a talented Gym Leader. Bea's direct stare and fighting stance, indicating that she's ready for battle at any moment, will make you glad the Gym Leader is on your team rather than your opponent's. The fact that her card lets you discard the top five cards in your deck and attach any Energy you discarded this way to your Fighting-type Benched Pokémon doesn't hurt either.


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Behold the Thunder Pokémon in all its vivid glory! It's rare to see Pokémon TCG artwork bleed beyond the frame, but the simplest explanation for this anomaly is that Raikou's energy just can't be contained! And, of course, that it's an Amazing Pokémon card as indicated by the rainbow “A” in the card's lower left corner. Illustrator Hideki Ishikawa envisions the Lightning-type Pokémon against a background of highly-saturated color, making Raikou impossible to ignore. When you finally tear your eyes away from the wondrous spectacle of color to examine Raikou's attack, the card gets even better because Raikou's Amazing Shot deals 120 damage to the opponent's Active Pokémon as well as one of their Benched Pokémon.


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Illustrator Tomokazu Komiya's Ninjask is almost contradictory in the emotions that it evokes. Komiya's choice of medium and gestural strokes establishes a rich texture communicating a sense of energy and life. Against this beautiful backdrop, the Ninja Pokémon appears to have invaded a backyard—complete with sprinklers and a basketball—as a person watches from the background with apparent horror. The overall effect is quirky, comical, beautiful, and even unnerving, considering the scale of the Pokémon that appears poised to strike. It's a masterful story if strangely told.


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Tomokazu Komiya's Shedinja would not be out of place in a stained-glass work of art, with its warm, rich color palette and abstract geometric background. The Shed Pokémon's ominous qualities are difficult to ignore, with a move named Life Squeeze and a mysterious figure positioned slightly behind the Pokémon. Whether the figure with X's over their eyes was subjected to Shedinja's Life Squeeze is unclear, but what is clear is that Komiya has created an at-once unnerving and beautiful representation of the Shed Pokémon that is difficult to walk away from.

The Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield—Vivid Voltage expansion launches November 13!

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