In honor of this week's Ultra Unlock Part One: Time event in Pokémon GO in which Aerodactyl is available as a Tier Three raid boss, let's take a look back at some of the most iconic Aerodactyl cards from the Pokémon TCG including both vintage and modern. We'd love to hear from you, so chime in with your top Aerodactyl picks in the comments below.
The first Aerodactyl card appeared in the third-ever Pokémon TCG set. The Fossil expansion included Aerodactyl as one of the major holographic pulls along with Lapras, Articuno, Zapdos, Moltres, Haunter, Gengar, and more. Kagemaru Himeno's Aerodactyl is super-stylized, especially for the time considering how often the cards featured the standard Ken Sugimori artwork. Aerodactyl looks a bit goofier than it normally does, especially in other cards, but this artwork hits that nostalgia button, so what can I do but smile?
Here we are with, to me, the best Aerodactyl card. Hajme Kusajima illustrated this holographic Aerodactyl for the EX Legend Maker expansion. This is a serious, menacing depiction of Kanto's most iconic Fossil Pokémon. The spread wings and low-hanging face create the impression that this ancient beast is about to burst into horrific action. Also? He's very purple.
The standard Sun & Moon era Pokémon-GX often get critiqued for their computer-generated art style. This style doesn't always work, it's true. However, PLANETA Igarashi illustrates a terrific depiction of Aerodactyl for Sun & Moon: Unified Minds that looks right out of a Pixar movie. The rocks bursting out on the sides of the card paired with Aerodactyl's snapping jaws, make this a visually striking card. It may be rendered in the 3D style that 5ban Graphics is sometimes criticized for, but both 5ban and PLANETA have contributed great artwork to the Pokémon TCG, including this card.