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.
- Single Strike Urshifu VMAX Rainbow Rare: I love Rainbow Rares, but the next card you'll see seems almost created to one-up Urshifu's Rainbow Rares. These are quite valuable in the set still, but they are certainly outclassed by the Alternate Art Secret Rares.
- Single Strike Urshifu VMAX Alternate Art: What is notable here is that Alternate Arts are generally not Secret Rares in the English-language Pokémon TCG. This is the first time since the introduction of Rainbow Rares that we have seen this style of card as a Secret Rare, as these Alternares are generally classified with the Full Arts. This new kind of Secret Rare is expected to continue into June's expansion Chilling Reign with the Blaziken VMAX Alternate Art and both Calyrex VMAX Alternate Arts. There are two Urshifu cards like this in Battle Styles and both are among the most valuable cards in the set, though the Rapid Strike version ends up being worth quite a bit more due to the stunning artwork. Stay tuned for next time to preview that card.
Stay tuned for more Pokémon TCG: Battle Styles as we continue our spotlight on the set's Secret Rares