If there is one thing that connects Pokémon fans over the various iterations of this hobby from the Pokémon TCG to the main series games to the mobile Pokémon GO and beyond, it is the shared love of Shiny Pokémon. Shinies are rare versions of a species that are colored differently than usual, and hunting them has become a major aspect of the hobby. The Pokémon TCG has leaned heavily into the Shiny craze in recent years with many different card types. At the end of the Sun & Moon era, we saw the introduction of the Shiny Vault subset in Hidden Fates. A Shiny Vault subset takes Ultra Rare cards from previous sets (GXs, Vs, VMAXes) and recolors them with the species' Shiny palette. The Sword & Shield era saw the Shiny Vault return in Shining Fates while Shinies were also featured on highly coveted Gold Secret Rares in other sets. Now, Radiant Pokémon arrived this year and features Shinies with a new, textured reverse holo pattern. We aren't done with the Shiny content, though, as it has been announced that the Pokémon TCG Japan will release a product called Special Battle Set Charizard VSTAR vs. Rayquaza VMAX that depicts these two as Shinies.
\It is unknown how many new cards will appear here, but we will get Shiny versions of Charizard VSTAR and Rayquaza VMAX. It isn't yet shown if they will appear in the style of Shining Fates Shinies, Gold Shinies, or something else entirely. I tend to think that we will see these cards rendered in the silvery style of the Shiny Vault from Hidden Fates and Shining Fates. This product will arrive in Japan on November 4th. There is no word yet on how it will be adapted into English.
Other upcoming Japanese Pokémon TCG releases include:
- Lost Abyss: Releasing on July 15th, this set will feature Origin Forme Giratina. Stay tuned for details.
- Incandescent Arcana: Releasing on September 2nd, this set will lead with Alolan Vulpix VSTAR. It is rumored that it will include a Character Rare featuring popular Alola-based Trainer Lillie with her Alolan Vulpix.
- Paradigm Trigger: Releasing on October 1st, this set will focus on Lugia, Regidrago, and Regieleki. This set will likely combine with Incandescent Arcana to be the final Sword & Shield-era set to release for English-language collectors.
- VSTAR Universe: This is the annual high-class set. It will release on December 2nd in Japan and will feature reprint cards along with more. It will close out the Sword & Shield era in Japan.