It's Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars time. This new Arceus and Charizard-themed Pokémon TCG set will see release this week. Tournament-official game stores will be able to begin selling booster boxes, booster packs, and Elite Trainer Boxes of Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars starting tomorrow, Monday, February 21st. Then, the set will see its wide release to non-PLAY game stores and big box retailers on Friday, February 25th. Ahead of the set's release, I want to talk a bit to Pokémon TCG collectors to help prepare our readership for what is truly an exciting set.
Here are some major things to keep in mind for Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars:
- Pull rates: If you've ever been unsatisfied with a booster box, I'd suggest giving this one a shot. Generally, you can expect between six and ten Ultra Rares when opening an average booster box. If you're lucky, that spread may include a Secret Rare (or two) and a Full Art (or two). The pull rates will be different with Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars because of the Trainer Gallery. The Trainer Gallery is a 30-card subset that can be pulled in the reverse holo slot. This subset includes Character Cards, Character Super Rares, Full Art Trainers, and even black and gold VMAXes. Due to the placement of these in the reverse holo slot, you will pull between three to six more exciting cards per box.
- VSTAR and VMAX: VSTARs are replacing VMAXes, yes. While VMAX cards are expected to continue in the Trainer Gallery subsets, it is widely thought that the Pokémon TCG are retiring VMAXes in the main sections after this set. The Japanese equivalent of this set only had VSTAR, but the English will see VSTAR and VMAX both pop up. However, unlike Japanese booster boxes, a VSTAR and VMAX hit are not 100% guaranteed in your box.
- VSTAR Markers: These will randomly appear in the place of Energy Cards, which are also different in this set. This card is significant for play.