Pokémon TCG Japan's Dark Phantasma Preview: Kanto Character Rares

The new Pokémon TCG set has arrived in Japan. Dark Phantasma was released on May 13th, 2022 and continues the focus on the Hisui region that debuted earlier this year in Nintendo Switch game Pokémon Legends: Arceus. Like the previous three sets (Battle Region, Time Gazer, and Space Juggler), Dark Phantasma features cards with certain Hisuian species for the very first time. This Zoroark-themed set also continues the VSTAR mechanic introduced this year and sees more Radiant Pokémon cards (formerly thought to be called "Sparkling" cards) that depict species in their Shiny form with a unique reverse holo pattern. This sets, along with the upcoming Japanese sets Lost Abyss and Incandescent Arcana, will likely be the basis of the next English-language set, Sword & Shield – Lost Origin, coming in Summer 2022. Today, let's wrap up the previews for the Character Rares.


Dark Phantasma cards. Credit: Pokémon TCG
Dark Phantasma cards. Credit: Pokémon TCG

Unlike English language sets, Japanese sets that include Character Rares don't feature a Trainer Gallery subset but instead list those cards with their standard Secret Rares. So far, we have previewed Character Rares featuring Pikachu, Gengar, Hisuian Arcanine, and Spiritomb as well as Character Super Rares featuring Enamorous and Gallade in Dark Phantasma. These last two Character Rares feature two Kanto species, Parasect and Snorlax.

Parasect Character Rare is beautifully illustrated by Oswaldo KATO, one of the most unique and expressive Pokémon TCG artists currently working. He uses a mixture of glows and muted colors to depict a stunning scene of Parasect in a field of mushrooms with a member of the Ginkou Guild. Then, Kouki Saitou illustrates the Snorlax Character Rare, showing the Pokémon pigging out with Kamado.

Japanese sets often give us early ideas of what the English-language sets may include, so be sure to keep an eye on our coverage. You can stay tuned for previews of Dark Phantasma cards as well as updates on everything Pokémon TCG right here at Bleeding Cool.

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About Theo Dwyer

Theo Dwyer writes about comics, film, and games.
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