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How Do VSTAR Pokémon Work (& Why Are They So Powerful)?

The latest expansion to the Pokémon Trading Card Game is the highly anticipated Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars (called Star Birth in Japan). This series introduces the new VSTAR mechanic to the game. 

Previous Sword & Shield sets introduced V and VMAX Pokémon. These cards feature fully evolved Pokémon as basic V Pokémon that can evolve into its VMAX form. 

Trainers have become accustomed to Pokémon that are able to skip their usual evolution line. But VSTAR cards aren’t replacing VMAX Pokémon, which can also be found in this series. VSTAR Pokémon, instead, offer an alternative evolution line for V Pokémon. 

In Brilliant Stars, the new VSTAR mechanic offers players powerful one-shot attacks and Abilities – while risking fewer Prize cards. We’ll discuss the many perks of VSTAR Pokémon in detail below, and feature the best VSTAR cards from the series.

What is a VSTAR Card & Why Are They Powerful?

As mentioned, VSTAR Pokémon evolve from V Pokémon. While VSTAR Pokémon generally have less HP than VMAX Pokémon, they will cost a player two prize cards instead of three when Knocked Out

What makes VSTAR Pokémon powerful is that each one features a VSTAR Power, which is either an attack or an Ability. A player can only use one VSTAR Power per match

Of course, using a VSTAR attack still requires Energy. Keep in mind that VSTAR Pokémon also have a standard attack. The combination of high HP, powerful attacks and a unique one-shot VSTAR Power makes the new VSTAR Pokémon a major highlight of the Brilliant Stars series.

Top VSTAR Pokémon from Sword & Shield – Brilliant Stars

This is the complete list of VSTAR cards from Brilliant Stars. The set, of course, includes a V Pokémon counterpart for each VSTAR Pokémon. We’ve ranked them below, starting with the most powerful VSTAR Pokémon in the series. 

Charizard VSTAR

Charizard VSTAR (018/172)

Charizard VSTAR’s regular attack requires three Energy. It does 130 damage – 230 if the Pokémon has any damage counters on it. Yet it’s Charizard’s VSTAR Power that allows this beast to take the top spot on the list:

Two Energy must be discarded, but the VSTAR Power does 320 damage – enough to take out VMAX Pokémon in one shot. This attack can only go off once, but it will Knock Out whatever Pokémon it faces. 

Arceus VSTAR

Arceus VSTAR (123/172)

Arceus VSTAR’s regular Trinity Nova attack does 200 damage for three Energy. It also allows the player to search and attach three basic Energy to V Pokémon any way they like. Its VSTAR Power takes this one step further, allowing the player to grab any two cards from their deck and into their hand. In certain situations, this is the difference between winning and losing the game. 

Read More: Stephane Ivanoff’s take on deck building with Arceus VSTAR: A Brilliant New Era.

Shaymin VSTAR

Shaymin VSTAR (014/172)

For only two Energy, Shaymin VSTAR swings for 120 damage, plus 40 for each Prize card the opponent has already taken. It’s VSTAR Power is mega helpful in Grass-type themed decks. This one-shot ability heals 120 damage for each grass Pokémon on the bench. This ability can prolong the game, giving the player a chance to win. 

Whimsicott VSTAR

Whimsicott VSTAR (065/172)

Whimsicott VSTAR’s regular attack not only does 130 for three Energy, it denies your opponent the ability to play Special Energy or Pokémon Tools from their hand on their next turn. To one of the opponent’s Pokemon, its VSTAR Power does 60 damage for each Energy attached. This offers Trainers the ability to make this one-shot attack massively powerful.

Pokémon VSTAR Special Collections

Two of Eevee’s evolutions received the star treatment with these Leafeon VSTAR and Glaceon VSTAR Special Collections. These collections are available now. 

Sword & Shield: Brilliant Stars - Special Collection Leafeon VSTARSword & Shield: Brilliant Stars - Special Collection Glaceon VSTAR

VSTAR cards are some of the most powerful cards in Brilliant Stars, with more VSTAR cards expected to come this year. The full set releases on February 25, 2022. Pre-order your Booster Box or Elite Trainer Box today. 

2 thoughts on “How Do VSTAR Pokémon Work (& Why Are They So Powerful)?”

  1. The most powerful Vstar is definitely not Charizard. You only need to look at Arceus to know that it’s the best Vstar, by far. It’s super versatile and can make any deck much more consistent.

  2. You’re right, but I find it much easier to pull charizard vstars than arceus’s. I pulled 2 charizard vstars in 3 packs, but I have yet to pull acreus vstar (They still haven’t given me charizard v and i have arceus v.

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