February 9, 2023
Elena - Gaia Storm
Hello everyone! The new expansion from Pokémon
TCG has dropped this week and we can officially get our hands on these amazing
cards. Now, Crown Zenith is a very special set for a number of reasons so in
this article we are going to cover all of them. Let’s get started!
Why is Crown Zenith not a normal
The first thing you need to understand about
Crown Zenith is that it is not part of the regular release cycle. If you’ve
played Pokémon -or any other TCGs, in general- you are very familiar with the
fact that each 3 months or so a new expansion drops, bringing new cards to the
competitive scene and introducing new archetypes. But from time to time, the
franchise decides to release a very special set with more like a “collector
approach", giving the players the possibility to get alternative artworks
of popular cards or even reprinting some of the most hard-to-get cards from the
past few months. As such, these types of sets are very attractive both for
collectors and for competitive players.
Crown Zenith has been designed with this idea in mind. It comes with a ton of
reprints, alternative art cards and even some new additions that could have an
immediate impact in the standard format. Collectors, as you can imagine, are
opening this set like crazy and if you keep reading and check some of the
images below you will understand why.
And the last important note about Crown Zenith
is that it marks the end of the Pokémon Sword and Shield Eran. In a few months,
we will officially enter in the Scarlet and Violet one with the base set
hitting the shelves so, in a way, Crown Zenith is like the last goodbye from
this generation. Whether this generation will be remembered as a good or a bad
moment in the Pokémon TCG history, I will leave it to each of you.
What are the most competitive cards
from the set?
While I certainly enjoy pulling shiny cards, I
don’t consider myself a collector. That’s why I am going to start analyzing
about some interesting additions to our current format.
As far as Pokémon cards go, there are definitely
some new ones that can (and I am sure that will) see play. Perhaps the best one
is Zamazenta. At first sight it
might not look like a very scary attacker but is the most powerful “revenge
killer” now and I have no doubts that it will be played in Lost Box decks that
can afford to run metal energies. Another very good Pokémon and perhaps the
most versatile one is Radiant Eternatus,
which lets you “cheat” the board state and directly play VMAX Pokémon into the
field without needing to evolve them. I have some doubts about its viability
but who doesn’t want to play a Duraludon VMAX for free? Lastly, another card
that could certainly be interesting is Zacian
VSTAR since it has the power to get rid of basically anything on the field
with its attack. The only problem with Zacian is that it has arrived very late,
once the Sword and Shield base set Zacian V is about to rotate (*sobs*).
In the chapter of Trainer cards, I think there
is just one that is worth talking about: Sky
Seal Stone. This tool card needs to be attached to a V Pokémon but has the
potential to turn the table upside down as it will give you one extra prize
when you KO an opposing Pokémon. Players need to be more careful now and play
around this item card or they could potentially lose a game that they thought
was in their hands!
What are the cards I should buy as a
All of them, of course! (that is what every
collector does, right?). Jokes aside, when I said that this set comes with some
amazing cards, I was being honest. Even I am actually considering collecting
some of them.
Where should I start? Ok, so the first
important thing is that Crown Zenith is filled with alternative art cards, each
with their own unique style.
Some of them even tell a story. There is a
subset of 9 Pokémon that, when combined, reveal an image. And without any
doubt, I think the most important highlight here are the alternative gold
versions of the 4 Legendary Pokémon from Sinnoh: Arceus, Palkia, Dialga and
Giratina. This is something that I absolutely love because their design is
truly going away from the “cuteness” that has always been prominent in the
Pokémon game and features these legends with a more realistic and even scarier
vibe. Oh and by the way, if you are wondering, these can also be put together
to reveal an illustration. I am planning to get the 4 of them and store them
safely in my Magnetic Card Case as soon as they arrive!
So, all in all, it does not matter if you are
a collector or a competitive player, Crown Zenith is definitely a great
expansion. It provides us with the right opportunity to bling our decks with
maximum rarity cards, build new strategies and collect some of the most amazing
artworks we’ve seen in the Pokémon TCG in a while. Thanks for reading!
Elena - Gaia Storm
Elena has been playing Pokémon Trading Card Game since 2011 and has never stopped. With her partner, she runs Gaia Storm, one of the largest Pokémon TCG Youtube channels in the world. She has a problem remembering the names of all the Pokémon but tends to open the most broken Pokémon packs.