Pokémon TCG: VMAX Climax Secret Rare Preview: Shadow Rider Calyrex

The upcoming Pokémon TCG high-class set VMAX Climax, which will be released in December 2021 in Japan, was previously shrouded in mystery. Very little was known about how this set would show up for English-speaking collectors and players until the Pokémon TCG revealed that their February 2022 set, Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars, would feature a subset of 30 cards called the Trainer Gallery. However, this week's reveal of a shocking 100 Secret Rares in VMAX Climax has created confusion as to what will show up in Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars. While speculation will continue, let's take a look at some of those Secret Rares from VMAX Climax.

VMAX Climax cards. Credit: Pokémon TCG
VMAX Climax cards. Credit: Pokémon TCG

I'll admit it. When I first heard that there would be six Calyrex cards in VMAX Climax, the New York in me came out. It's O.D., son. With some time having passed since I found that out, I still think it kind of is O.D., because four Character Super Rares and two Black & Golds is a lot for a Pokémon of its popularity who we just got four Alternate Arts of earlier this year in Sword & Shield – Chilling Reign and Japan's equivalent sets. You know what gives me pause, though? Look at the artwork on the Shadow Rider Calyrex V CSR up there to the left. Did this dreamlike, painterly artwork just turn a Calyrex card into one of my ultimate chase card? While I'm still in the "like not love" camp about Ice and Shadow Rider Calyrex, the stylized expressive artwork here is a beautiful addition to the Pokémon TCG. The artist, Oswaldo KATO, is someone I'm going to be paying close attention to. KATO has shown great variety in style (check out all of the cards credited to KATO here) with the other standout being the Golurk V Alt Art from Sword & Shield – Evolving Skies. Perhaps what is most impressive is that both cards are done in completely different styles.

Stay tuned for more Pokémon TCG news daily right here at Bleeding Cool! You can follow our VMAX Climax coverage using our official tag for the set and our Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars coverage using this tag for the set.

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About Theo Dwyer

Theo Dwyer writes about comics, film, and games.
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