Tomorrow, the Pokémon TCG will release its landmark 25th Anniversary expansion, Celebrations. Celebrations pays homage to 25 years of this incredible hobby with 25 all holo cards featuring iconic Pokémon from the past and present of the franchise. This set also features the Classic Collection subset, which consists of 25 reprints of iconic cards from every time period of the Pokémon TCG, including cards from Base Set all the way up to the Sun & Moon era. I am thrilled to tell you that the Pokémon Company reached out to me with a celebratory box for the occasion in exchange for an honest review of the set. Starting today, I will open every product sent and give you my take. First, I opened the Dark Sylveon V Tin and my appetite for the set was stirred. Now, let’s get into a product that has even more packs. The Pokémon TCG: Celebrations Elite Trainer Box.
Pokémon TCG: Celebrations Elite Trainer Box contains:
- 10 Celebrations packs
- two Darkness Ablaze
- one Vivid Voltage
- one Battle Styles
- one Chilling Reign
- Greninja ☆ promo card
- Celebrations sleeves
- Dice, coin, damage counters, Energy Cards, dividers, and the rest that you’ve come to expect from an Elite Trainer Box. Great for not only collectors but also competitive players.
The Greninja ☆ is a great idea, as it brings back the old ☆ card style and mechanic that showcases Shiny Pokémon, but with Greninja who wasn’t around when this mechanic was active. This is the core conceit of most Pokémon TCG: Celebrations promos: pairing newer species with classic, out-of-rotation card styles. Greninja is one that falls in the middle of the road for me. I like it and I’m happy to own it, but wow just wait until you see some of the others.
Now, remember, the first product I opened just had four packs of Celebrations. That means that, so far, my impression of the set comes from a total of sixteen cards pulled. This is still the phase of opening where I’m noticing new things about the set and the products, so let’s get into the opening.
Here are my initial thoughts as I crack the ETB:
- My first and so far only negative thought about the Pokémon TCG: Celebrations rollout. The other packs? Vivid, Battle Styles, etc? I get it, but this product didn’t need them. The idea is surely to call attention to these sets as Celebrations is going to be a hyper-popular product, but I think most people opening this box will agree that it would’ve been better to have a couple more Celebrations packs and none of the others. I say that having pulled absolute fire in the other packs, with a Rainbow Rare coming from Battle Styles for me. This doesn’t take points off for me, but this is the one choice made with these products so far that I don’t enjoy.
- Now, the packs. Ten packs makes this Elite Trainer Box one of the most satisfying Celebrations opening possible short of the Ultra Premium Collection, which has even more packs. That product wasn’t included though, and it’s no surprise because it is an absolute monster of a box. These ten packs, though, made for a very satisfying opening.
- The pulls just keep coming. Out of ten packs, five had main set Ultra Rares and four had Classic Collection cards. The Full Art Pikachu Base Set reimagining, which was among my chase cards, feels like it’s going to be fairly common. After fourteen packs opened total, I’ve already pulled three. Of my main set pulls here, I was happy to see that the rumors about the Full Art Professor’s Research were inaccurate. The card is indeed textured like any normal Full Art Trainer.
- Speaking of texture, wow, oh wow. The Classic Collection blew my mind this time around. I pulled Here Comes Team Rocket, Luxray Lv.X, Base Set Blastoise, and Umbreon ☆. The Blastoise hits home as the original was my first ever holo pulled from my first Pokémon TCG pack as a kid, and they did this classic card right. The texture vibrates out from Blastoise in waves like a rippling body of water. The Umbreon ☆ was a shocking pull for me, as this is considered by many to be right up there with Base Set Charizard as the Classic Collection pull.
- After opening two Pokémon TCG: Celebrations products, I remained stunned by the pull rate.