Sword & Shield – Battle Styles is the latest expansion from Pokémon TCG. It focuses on the new Legendary Pokémon Urshifu and introduces a new mechanic for those who play the game: Rapid Strike and Single Strike style attacks. This new mechanic begins in Battle Styles and will continue at least through the next two Pokémon TCG sets, including June's Chilling Reign and August's as-of-yet untitled expansion. Battle Styles isn't just a player's set but is also a collector's dream, as this expansion reintroduces Special Art Cards (or, Alternate Arts) which were popular during the tail end of the Sun & Moon era with fan-favorite sets such as Unified Minds, Cosmic Eclipse, and so on. With this series, we will spotlight all of the exciting pulls from Battle Styles, which you can see as they release by following the set's Bleeding Cool tag. This time, we continue with a closer look at the set's Full Art Pokémon cards.
- Empoleon V Full Art: Interestingly, this Empoleon Full Art evokes a classic vintage holo for me: Blastoise from Base Set. It's of course a very different card, but featuring a Starter evolution over that swirling blue and green background hits the nostalgia just right. A beautiful V.
- Empoleon V Alternate Art: Alternate Arts are by far the most exciting pulls in Battle Styles and this is one of the first we're covering in our spotlight. One of the coolest parts about the Empoleon (and later, Tyranitar) Alternate is the way it narratively connects to other cards in the set. This one tells a story in conjunction with the Falinks and Mienfoo cards.
- Tapu Koko V Full Art: Wow… I'll tell you this right here, I wasn't excited for Tapu Koko's presence in this set. The Sun & Moon era completely overdid the Tapus, but this is quite a stunning card with its dazzling colors.
Stay tuned for more Pokémon TCG: Battle Styles as we continue with our spotlight on the Full Arts.