Theme decks are gone and V Battle Decks are in. The Pokémon TCG introduced a new product earlier this year that began with Blastoise and Vensusaur V decks and now continues with Gardevoir and Victini V decks. These decks are released in pairs and come in two forms. One form is separate decks, if you want to buy just the Gardevoir or just the Victini, while the other form is the V Battle Deck: Victini vs. Gardevoir. The same was true of the Blastoise and Venusaur V Battle Decks earlier this year. Let's break down the difference between the two kinds of products and what collectors can get out of these.
The main difference is obvious: in the single decks, you get one deck while in the "vs." set, you get both decks. Now, that is not actually it, though, and this is where completionists may find themselves interested. (I say "completionists" and I mean "me." I am interested.) The "vs." version of the V Battle Decks takes trainer cards from recent sets that normally are non-holo and deliver a holo version.
So far, both of the newly holographic cards are from Pokémon TCG's February 2021 special set, Shining Fates. The V Battle Deck: Venusaur vs. Blastoise included a special holo version of Boss's Orders featuring Lysander, while the V Battle Deck: Victini vs. Gardevoir includes the special holo version of Professor's Research featuring Professor Juniper. Holo versions of normally non-holo cards from other expansions isn't new to Pokémon TCG decks. We have seen many instances where normally non-holo cards are given the cracked ice holo pattern. Usually, this becomes the deck's featured card.
However, these new V Battle Decks change that in two ways: the holo pattern applied to the card is now the main holo pattern currently in use featured vertical lines, and there are now Black Star Promo added as the main feature card. This, in my eyes, makes the decks for both players and collectors.
Stay tuned for a full review of both of these products from the Pokémon TCG.