Pokemon Go TCG Set Review – Darkness, Metal and Dragon

We’re churning through this set review, now at the halfway point! If you missed part one or part two, you should definitely check those out, as there are some incredibly cool cards in this set that I gave my opinions on. This will be part three, and I will be reviewing all of the rare, ultra rare and interesting cards in this set that have the Darkness, Metal and Dragon typing. This part will probably be the shortest of the four parts, as there aren’t many cards of these types in the set. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some great cards to consider and take a look at, so let’s jump in!

In case you have missed one of my previous set reviews, here’s how I do things. I’ll be grading each of the interesting cards on a five-point scale to leave my opinion on what kind of impact these cards will have on the competitive Pokemon TCG landscape. This review will be in four parts and released over the course of the next week. Each part will cover all Pokemon of a certain type. 

As mentioned, these cards will be graded on a five-point scale, 1 being the worst and 5 being the best. Here is my criteria for each of these 5 points. 

  • 1 Point (Not Competitively Viable) – Cards with a score of 1 point are cards that I do not deem to be competitively viable.
  • 2 Points (Interesting Cards) – Cards with a score of 2 points are cards that have some potential or have interesting designs. But ultimately I believe these cards will see very little, if any competitive play.
  • 3 Points (Solid Cards) – Cards with a score of 3 points are cards that are pretty solid overall. Most of these cards will see some play in rogue decks, or be an occasional inclusion in meta decks.
  • 4 Points (Very Good) – Cards with a score of 4 points are cards that are very good, and are likely to make a competitive impact. These cards will be often played in tier 2 or tier 3 decks, sometimes making a splash into tier 1!
  • 5 Points (Top Tier) – Cards with a score of 5 points are powerful enough to instantly have an impact on the competitive metagame. These cards will either be defining to a brand new archetype, regular inclusions in top tier decks, or play a pivotal role in the overall deck building strategy of all players. Expect me to be very stingy with this 5/5 ranking! Not many cards will (or should) fit into this category.

I will be rating all of the holo and ultra rare cards on this scale, in addition to any other cards I deem interesting! If you don’t see a card on this list, you can safely assume I would rate it a 1.

As always, these are just my opinion! I don’t always get it right, but my years of experience playing and casting this game have given me great insight into what gives a card a shot at competitive success. All of my rankings will be based on the cards’ potential in the current standard format. Some cards may be much better in the expanded format or even in the Gym Leader Challenge format, but for the purposes of this review, I will only be referencing standard. Of course future cards could be released that will make any of these cards much better than they currently are, but I can’t predict the future! So again, these cards will be rated based on the current standard format metagame, and the current Standard format card pool.



Alolan Raticate

Alolan Raticate (042/078)

Another Raticate, another Super Fang attack! This is not the first time that a Raticate card has had this exact attack. And through the history of the game, this attack has pretty much never been great. It will pop up in a fun rogue deck every once and a while, but I wouldn’t expect it to take down any major tournaments.


Tyranitar (043/078)

A Stage 2 card that needs four Energies to deal 180 damage is not exactly something I would call competitive. Raging Crash could deal a bunch of damage under the right circumstances, but its way too much to get set up to ever be worth the effort.


Header - Metal Type


Steelix (044/078)

180 HP is a big chunk of health for a Stage 1 Pokemon, but lackluster attacks with mediocre damage output likely lead to another bulk card.


Melmetal (046/078)

While Swinging Smash actually does have the potential to one-hit KO Pokemon V when combined with a Choice Belt, that does involve you hitting two heads. If you ever flip two tails, this card is doing a measly 30 damage. And plus, if your opponent just Evolves into a VSTAR or VMAX, you’re no longer reaching for that one-hit KO.

Melmetal V

Melmetal V (075/078)

Arm Charge is a pretty solid attack for an evolving Pokemon V, especially when you consider the synergy with the VMAX’s attack (which deals more damage for each Metal energy you have attached to it.) If Melmetal VMAX ever sees any play, this card is not a bad option in a pinch to sneak a little more damage and an additional energy into play.

Melmetal VMAX

Melmetal VMAX (048/078)

330 HP, and an attack that can deal 280 damage is a decent prospect for a card right now. The main problem will be managing to get five Energy onto this Pokemon. Through Metal Saucer, you can pull it off at a reasonable pace, but I think that for this deck to be successful you will need your Melmetal to have longevity. Something like Bronzong and Cheryl is enticing, though these combos are very difficult to set up. I don’t think this card is terrible, but I wouldn’t expect too much from it.


Header - Dragon Type

Dragonite V

Dragonite V (049/078)

The main issue with this card is that there is another Dragonite V that is just way better. The Promo Dragonite V deals 250 damage, this one only deals 160. The Promo also has a Shred attack to hit through any effect, which is very useful on an evolving Pokemon V. This Dragonite has an okay first attack, since you can guarantee an Energy discard from your opponent’s active, but it’s still not great. I think if you want to play a Dragonite VSTAR deck, using the other Dragonite V is the way to go.

Dragonite VSTAR

Dragonite VSTAR (050/078)

Any card with the ability to deal 250 damage is at least worth looking at. With a Choice Belt, you can hit for 280 damage with Giga Impact, enough to KO all VSTARs in the format. Getting four Energy on this Pokemon is where the main problem is though. I think that if the Draconic Star VSTAR Power was an Ability as opposed to an attack, this card would possibly be good. But needing to use an attack to have a chance to power up multiple attackers is extremely mediocre.

Well, that’s all of the Darkness, Metal and Dragon type Pokemon from the Pokemon GO set. I told you this would be a shorter part! There’s sadly nothing really to be excited about in this section. Melmetal VMAX is the card with the most potential from part 3, and like I said, it’s probably best in a difficult to establish combo.

Though this part was short, there will be plenty to make up for it in Part 4. In the fourth and final part of this review, I will be looking at all of the colorless Pokemon and all of the Trainer cards in the set. And trust me, there are some pretty solid cards to discuss! 

Remember, if you’re ordering singles or sealed product from the newest set ChannelFireball.com has got you covered! The marketplace is an amazing place to pickup any cards you may need.

Thanks for reading!

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