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Pokemon TGC February-March release previews

Pokemon TGC Febuaray -March

If you are into Pokemon TGC, you are likely counting the days to the release of the next core set for the game, Temporal Forces, and you know that is just one month away. As mentioned in the set preview we published a few weeks ago, the new set will officially release on the 22nd of March and will bring us Walking Wake ex and Iron Leaves ex! There is a lot to be excited for in this set and I have the usual difficult choice of which products from the set I would aim to get.

This time, choosing which Pokemon products to get is even more complex as there will be tons of other releases from now to the end of March including the additional stock of Paldean Fates, the new Paldea Adventure Chest and the new amazing stackable tins just to name a few. Although I would really like to “get them-all”, I know I have to pick only a few of them and deciding which one is better is not an easy task. Perhaps, looking through what is coming together will be of help to everyone to make some good choices.

Melmetal-Ex and Houndoom-Ex Battle Deck are among the first products to release on the 23rd of February. Each of these decks will include a ready-to-play 60-card deck featuring the reprint of either Melmetal-Ex or Houndoom-ex from the Scarlet & Violet – Obsidian Flames set. To differentiate them from the original first print, these reprints will have no Black Star Promo cards included in either deck. Like all other battle decks, each of them will still include a deck box, some damage counters, a single-player playmat, a booklet with the game rules, a Quick Guide, three reference cards, a coin, and a QR-code card for the online game. In terms of gameplay, both Melmetal-Ex and Houndoom-Ex Battle Decks are Lv1 products aimed mainly for beginners. They therefore both offer a great opportunity to get into the game and learn the ropes but they will not be very competitive. If you cannot decide which one to pick, always remember that Zatu usually have a two-deck deal to help you out.

Mabosstiff-ex Box will also release on the 23rd of February. The box will include 1 standard and 1 oversized foil promo card featuring the intimidating Pokemon, 1 foil card featuring Maschiff and 4 Paradox Rift Pokemon booster packs together with the usual code card for Pokemon TCG Live. In terms of gameplay Mabosstiff-Ex is a Dark Pokemon with two main attacks. The first, Daunt, deals only 30 damages but reduces the damages the opponent Pokemon can do in their next turn by 50 allowing your Pokemon to last longer. The second attack matches the protective nature of the Pokemon by dealing a massive 220 damage in case any of you benched Pokemon is damaged. Overall, Mabosstiff-ex box is quite a good deal as usual considering the promo card and the four booster packs included.

Another notable product to look for on the 23rd of February is the Combined Powers Premium Collection. As the name may hint, this set features three Legendary Pokemons from the Johto region in their EX form: Ho-Oh Ex, Lugia Ex, and Suicune Ex. In detail, the set will come with 3 foil cards featuring Lugia ex, Ho-Oh ex, and Suicune ex, 1 foil card featuring Mr. Mime, 3 foil Pokemon Tool cards (“Sun seed”, “Scorching Charcoal”, and “Drops in the Ocean”), 1 foil oversize card featuring Lugia ex and 11 (!!) Pokemon TCG booster packs picked from the latest sets including Obsidian Flames and Paradox Rift. Unfortunately, the Promo cards included in this Premium Collection cannot be used at official tournaments but they still look amazing and a nice addition to any collection.

March will kick off in the best possible way with the release on the 1st of March of the Paldea Adventure Chest, an amazing product filled with goodies. This set is quite new both in terms of design and content as you will be able to get 7 foil promo cards including a full art Pikachu, a Sprigatito-Ex, a Pawmi, a Pawmo, a Pawmot-Ex, a Tandemaus, and a Maushold-Ex. Inside the box you will also find 1 sheet of tech stickers, 1 mini portfolio, 1 squishy toy Pikachu, and 6 Pokemon TCG booster packs from Scarlet and Violet Base Set, Paldea Evolved, Obsidian Flames and Paradox Rift. Obviously there is also the usual code card for Pokemon TCG Live. Personally, I appreciate the design of this Adventure Chest seems and some of promo cards look quite exclusive to the set. The price, however, feels a bit on the high end considering all the 6 booster packs included belong to older sets.

A new set of Stacking Tins is also due to release right on the 1st of March. This third set will feature Dragon, Psychic and Metal Pokemons and arrives right after the first set of Stacking Tins that released in February 2022 (Grass, Water, and Lightning Pokemons) and the second set that released in October 2022 featuring Fighting, Fire, and Darkness-types. The graphics on these new set looks amazing featuring fan-favourite Pokemons like Gengar, Goomy and Metang. The tins will include 3 Pokemon TCG booster packs and 2 Pokemon sticker sheets and they can be bought separately or a set of three to be sure to continue your collection.

Just a month after the previous ones, Pokemon company will release two more Deluxe Battle Decks on the 22nd of March: Deluxe Battle deck – Ninetales-ex and Deluxe Battle deck – Zapdos-ex. As usual, each of these decks will contain a 60 card-deck, including 2 copies of the Pokemon-ex featured in the deck, a single-player playmat, a set of damage counter dice, a large coin, two acrylic condition markers, a deck box, and a trategy sheet to learn the engine of the deck. Looking to the card list, Zapdos-ex seems a deck strongly dependent on Energy cards as it includes a lot of Pokemon that need to discard their energy in order to attack. This is a sizeable weakness for the deck and the support cards provided with it (including a copy of Miraidon-ex) may not be efficient enough to give consistency to the deck. New players may surely find some good cards in this deck although it feels it may not have much competitive value. The Nintetales-ex deck, on the contrary, is better designed with a good line-up of cards and Pokemon to support your strategy. The main tricky feature of this deck is to ensure you and your opponent have exactly the same number of cards in hand so that your Nintetales-ex can deal 220 damage. To help players to meet this attack condition, this deck is filled with deck/hand manipulation cards that make this deck interesting and can be also useful to improve your other decks. Considering this, I think the Ninetales-ex Deluxe Battle Deck can be a nice option to have if you are interested in getting a new Deck or some of the support cards provided with it.

Finally, on the 22nd of March we will be able to put our hands on Temporal Forces as well, the new core set featuring more Ancient and Future Pokemons. More details about the set and the card list can be found in the preview we wrote last month and there will be plenty of products to choose from starting from the usual Booster Packs and the Booster boxes. As usual, the boxes will include 36 Booster Packs and they are the best way to collect the cards from this set as they usually provide most of the common and uncommon cards together with a good fraction of rare, ultra-rare and some rare illustration cards. In case you are not looking to commit to a full box of 36 packs right away, you can still get some economy by purchasing one of the two alternate Temporal Forces 3 Pack set featuring either Cleffa or Cyclizar. Two Premium Checklane products will also be available featuring the evolution line of Togepi (Togepi – Togetic - Togekiss) or the Frigibax's one (Frigibax -Arctibax – Baxcalibur). In both case, the set will include one Temporal Forces Booster Pack, one card of each evolution stage and one jumbo-size coin featuring Pawmi (note the coin is the same in both sets)

Finally, Temporal Forces set will have as usual two different Elite Trainer Boxes. The first one will feature Walking Wake the Paradox form of Suicune and the second Iron Leaves, Paradox forms Virizon. Each of the boxes will include 9 Temporal Forces Booster Packs, 1 full-art foil promo card featuring Flutter Mane, 65 card sleeves featuring Walking Wake or Iron Leaves, 6 damage-counter dice, 1 coin-flip die, 2 plastic condition markers, a pack with 45 Pokemon TCG Energy cards, a player’s guide to the Temporal Forces expansion, and 4 dividers to use in your card storage solution. Disregarding how many dice and tokens you already have, I always find the ETB to be quite a good investment as they provide a lot of useful game items for pretty much the same price of the Booster Packs. The box itself also double as a good storage solution for all the spares you may get from the set thus I usually love to get at least one of them for every set. Of course, no collection would be complete without buying both Walking Wake and Iron Leaves boxes....

This conclude the overview of all the new Pokemon products releasing between February and March. The main question now is: which one would you chose?