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 Secret Rare cards. The coverage of Rainbow Rare cards will focus more on the current value of these cards, as the artwork aspect was covered in the other installments where the standard versions of these cards appear.
- Flapple VMAX: This is the least valuable Rainbow Rare Pokémon card in the set, and the overall second-least valuable Secret Rare, which the Gold Exp. Share Trainer Item card being the least valuable. Personally, I love Flapple and am thrilled that you can pick up this card at just about $14 USD as of this writing, but this Pokémon is just not quite embraced by the fandom. It's okay, though. I have more than enough Flapple appreciation to make up for that.
- Victini VMAX: This one is, in my opinion, currently undervalued. The Pokémon TCG fanbase loves mythical Pokémon, which I believe we'll see with Celebi when Pokémon TCG drops Chilling Reign, so this Victini Rainbow Rare going for a current value of $23 seems low. Personally, I love when great cards chill at a lower value than expected as it makes the set easier to complete, but this is one that I personally decided to scoop up while at the current price. Some cards (looking at the Urshifus here) will, I believe, drop over disinterest in the Pokémon as the set becomes less rare. This, though, I see going up.
- Tapu Koko VMAX: This is the card I would've assumed would be the least valuable Rainbow Rare, but it edges out Flapple by just about a dollar. The fanbase is tired of the Tapus from their huge presence during the Sun & Moon era. While the standard VMAX is nice, to say that this card didn't need a Rainbow Rare variant is putting it lightly. That doesn't mean I wouldn't smile if I pulled it, but this is the perfect example of how the TCG should be a bit more stingy as to which cards get Rainbow variants.
Stay tuned for more Pokémon TCG: Battle Styles as we continue our spotlight on the set's Secret Rares