Pokémon TCG: XY – Fates Collide Review

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Mega Alakazam-EX witnesses the future and shapes it to unify two worlds in Pokémon TCG: XY – Fates Collide, which becomes the latest expansion in the collectible card battling series.

At face value, it delivers what fans have come to expect. With more than 120 new cards to collect and play, that number adds five new Pokémon BREAK, 13 new Pokémon EX with three new Mega Evolution Pokémon, and 24 Trainer cards.

The reason that Fates Collide will excite most is Zygarde’s presence, which marks the first time that it has appeared in Pokémon TCG. That sees separate cards for Zygarde 10% Forme, Zygarde 50% Forme, and Zygarde Complete Forme, the last appearing as a new Pokémon-EX. While Zygarde Core, affectionately known as Blobby, appears on the Pokémon Tool card Power Memory, which, once attached to Zygarde-EX, will unlock the powerful All Cells Burn attack that can deal 200 damage.

The BREAK Evolution mechanic continues, an elevated Evolution stage that sees a Pokémon potentially gain new attacks, Abilities, HP or change type, while keeping existing attacks and Abilities. The new Pokémon BREAK are namely Omastar BREAK, Lugia BREAK, Bronzong BREAK, Carbink BREAK, and Delphox BREAK, which can be collected in Booster Packs.

As always, two new theme decks are positioned as the perfect chance to start playing Pokémon TCG. These each contain a legal 60-card deck, checklist, metallic coin, playmat, damage counters, condition markers, deck box, and, as can be expected, instructions to help you learn the rules and flow of play.

Those that choose the Sky Guardian theme deck will unleash a storm of battle with Fire and Fairy-type Pokémon. The Legendary Pokémon Lugia is the main attraction, with Moltres and Delphox packing a fiery punch with Flickering Flames and Flying Flare to burn through your opponent’s deck.

It is the guardian of the seas itself that lends more strategic advantage, with Lugia’s Pressure ability being useful in reducing any damage dealt by your opponent’s Active Pokémon – before Weakness and Resistance are applied. Lugia’s move, Intensifying Burn, can also be an immeasurable help in neutralising the threat from a Pokémon-EX in play, even though you won’t find such cards in either theme deck.

Battle Ruler, which is a Fighting and Grass-type theme deck, is your alternative. This will immediately draw more attention seeing as it includes Zygarde, the Legendary Pokémon of order and control. The main topic in Pokémon the Series: XYZ and the rumoured star in the non-existent Pokémon Z, it now takes a turn in the spotlight with the Fates Collide expansion.

While supported in the theme deck by Pokémon such as Serperior, Lucario and Hawlucha, Zygarde is particularly devastating in its own right. Its two Energy cost Rumble move will prevent your opponent’s Pokémon from retreating, while Geostrike can be particularly potent in dealing 120 damage but comes with some risk in that it deals 10 damage to each of your Benched Pokémon.

You will turn to Booster Packs to complete your collection, other new cards being strong additions to any self-constructed deck. Zygarde-EX has three heavy-hitting attacks as well as some particularly striking art, while Umbreon-EX’s Endgame move has the chance to secure more Prize cards if it knocks out an opponent’s Mega Evolution Pokémon.

Such progressive tactics continue with Regirock-EX which can strengthen your Fighting-type Pokémon with its Regi Power ability, Glaceon-EX can prevent damage dealt to it by an evolved Pokémon, while Diancie-EX can strike for more damage if there is a Stadium card in play.

Each Theme Deck also provides you with a code card that will let you unlock their contents virtually in Pokémon Trading Card Game Online. Booster Packs include similar codes, unlocking 10 random cards from Fates Collide.

With the BREAK Evolution mechanic remaining to be the game changer introduced this past year, Pokémon TCG: XY – Fates Collide continues to deliver strategic breadth to the cards that are in play. It is through such variety that it retains its strength and differentiates, and fans will certainly find the cards in this newest expansion particularly rewarding in welcoming new competitive strategies.

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