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Pokémon TCG - Scarlet & Violet to release worldwide on March 31st - 2023 season Standard Format Rotation to take place April 14th

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The Scarlet & Violet expansion to the Pokémon Trading Card Game, will be released worldwide on March 31st, 2023. As revealed during the 2022 Pokémon World Championships event in October, this expansion will see the return of the Pokémon ex to the game. The new Scarlet & Violet Series of TCG cards will also see several aesthetic and playability updates coming to the game, including several changes designed to bring card design internationally more in line with the Japanese releases.

Gameplay updates
Pokémon ex
Pokémon ex will be making a return to the game starting with this expansion, replacing the Pokémon V mechanic that has been in use since the start of the Sword & Shield Series. As with similar mechanics previously, Pokémon ex possess considerably higher HP and stronger attacks compared to their regular counterparts. In exchange for this additional power, opponents take two Prize cards instead of one when a Pokémon ex is Knocked Out.

As described in the official announcement, these Pokémon ex are most similar to those which first appeared in the Pokémon Trading Card Game during the EX Series, rather than the similar Pokémon EX which appeared during the Black & White Series starting with the Next Destinies expansion. Of particular note is that Pokémon ex, unlike Pokémon EX and Pokémon V, appear at their proper Evolution level. This means that non-basic Pokémon ex need to be evolved to from a regular non-ex Pokémon.

Pokémon Tools
Starting with the Scarlet & Violet expansion, Pokémon Tools will now be their own category of Trainer cards, rather than being a subcategory of Items. All existing Pokémon Tool cards will receive an errata to bring them in line with this new treatment of Pokémon Tools.

As a result of this change, existing cards that explicitly interact with or effect Item cards as opposed to Trainer cards more broadly will no longer interact with Pokémon Tool cards. This change will impact many popular Pokémon Abilities and Trainer cards, and so will likely have a significant impact on deck construction for the metagame.

Organised play updates
The 2023 Standard format will begin for in-person events on April 14th, 2023, and will come into force for online play in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Live app from March 30th, 2023. From these dates, cards with the "D" regulation mark will no longer be legal for play in Standard format, and players will only be able to use cards with the "E" and "F" regulation marks (and any future released marks), or which have received reprints with those marks. Cards become legal for tournament play two weeks after their release date.

No change is being made to the Expanded format for the 2023 season, which will continue to allow almost all cards from Black & White through to the latest released expansions, except only a limited number of banned cards.

Aesthetic updates
Five aesthetic changes are being made to the design of Pokémon TCG cards with the Scarlet & Violet Series. These include both changes intended to unify card designs across Japanese and international releases, as well as changes intended to improve gameplay experience by making cards easier for players to track during gameplay and in their hands.
  1. Grey card borders will be replacing the classic yellow borders that have been used on cards since the release of Base Set internationally.
  2. Expansion codes and language codes, which have to date been exclusively used on Japanese and Southeast Asian prints, will be replacing Expansion symbols on cards.
  3. For Basic Energy cards, the name of the Energy and the Basic Energy subtype tag will now be displayed at the top of the card.
  4. All Energy cards will now display Energy symbols at the bottom right of the card.
  5. Trainer card categories will now be displayed in the top left corner of cards.
Pricing, packaging, and card distribution changes
In North America and other markets, the entire range of Pokémon Trading Card Game products will be seeing an increase to their manufacturer's suggested retail price together with the launch of the Scarlet & Violet expansion. The Pokémon Company International has stated that these increases are happening due to global inflationary pressures having increased their cost of materials and production.

While the full range of price increases have not been detailed, the announcement explicitly notes that booster packs in the United States will increase in price from $3.99 to $4.49 USD. Alongside this price increase, each booster pack of 10 cards will now contain a guaranteed three holofoil cards per pack. Other products will also receive additional contents, with new Elite Trainer Boxes to include a full-art promo card and an additional booster.

Additionally, starting with Scarlet & Violet, there will also no longer be any "Regular Rare" cards. All cards with a rarity of "Rare" or higher will have a holofoil design.

Card Gallery


Bulbanews Writer
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