Welcome back, Trainers! We are now less than one week away from the official release of the latest Pokémon card set in the Sword and Shield series, Lost Origin!
Featuring a host of powerful new Pokémon for players to catch and battle with, and boasting a whopping 190+ cards being added in to play, Lost Origin is here to shake things up for players old and new!
The set re-introduces an older mechanic – The Lost Zone – first introduced back in the Platinum set in 2009, which surfaced again in 2018’s Ultra Prism. It’s safe to say that it has been a while since anyone has seen this mechanic in the standard format, and that there are sure to be plenty of newcomers to the game who have not yet encountered it.
Basically the TCG equivalent of Giratina’s Distortion World, The Lost Zone serves to remove cards from play for the duration of a game. Whereas there are myriad ways to retrieve something precious you’ve lost to the discard pile during play, any card you lose to The Lost Zone becomes irretrievable until the game is over.
In a meta where so many players are comfortable relying on a small number of energy cards for example, this can quickly become a disruptive (if not downright destructive) strategy for dominating the field. This shift in the standard format should cause many to pause and reconsider their strategies.
Now if that isn’t scary sounding enough, please allow me to introduce you to the high priest of The Lost Zone – Giratina VSTAR. This absolute beast of a card requires a mere 3 energy (1 Grass, 1 Psychic, 1 Colorless) to deliver a sizeable 280 damage with its Lost Impact attack. This is a considerable amount of damage for a relatively modest number of energy cards, though it does not go unbalanced. When this blow is delivered, 2 energy from this Pokémon must be sent to The Lost Zone.
This, combined with the effects of several other new cards, such as The Lost City (Stadium), Colress’ Experiment (Supporter) and more, allows a Trainer to power up the VSTAR Power of Giratina VSTAR, Star Requiem. This VSTAR Power, which can only be used once per game, requires that you have 10 or more cards in The Lost Zone, and your opponent’s active Pokémon is immediately knocked out. No additional legwork necessary.
While Giratina is the de facto mascot for the Lost Origin set, but there are certainly other ways a Trainer can use The Lost Zone to their advantage. This resurrected mechanic should prove to bring out a new wave of creativity and resolve from many players, and will serve to spice things up in the standard format.
Lost Origin officially launches on September 9th, 2022, and prerelease events are ongoing between August 27th to September 2nd, 2022.