Amid all the discussion of epic battles and intricate strategies, it’s easy to overlook the fantastic artwork on display on Pokémon TCG cards. Artists add their own style to Pokémon portraits, recognizable locales, and depictions of memorable events to add beauty and flair to the fun of Pokémon TCG battles.
Even as each artist puts their own spin on the cards they illustrate, it’s fun to look for themes that run throughout an expansion. We’ve discovered some of these themes in the Pokémon TCG: Sun & Moon—Burning Shadows expansion that stood out, including beach scenes, depictions of Team Skull’s activity, and more. But really it’s just a chance to take a deeper look at all the amazing artwork that the talented artists contribute.
So every day this week, we’ll be examining a theme in the Sun & Moon—Burning Shadows expansion. Check back to take a closer look at some of our favorite new art. And when we’re done, be sure to take a closer look at your own card collection to see all the beautiful illustrations on display!
Set Sights for Alola!
Many of the Pokémon that appear in the Sun & Moon—Burning Shadows expansion were first discovered in the beautiful Alola region. But upon closer inspection of some of the artwork, it’s not only the new Pokémon on display, but the region itself! Several of the locations are easily recognizable: Croagunk is taking in the view from the Hokulani Observatory, located high atop a mountain on Ula’ula Island and accessible by the Exeggutor Express bus, which is visible in the background. And anyone who has reached the Elite Four in the Pokémon Sun or Pokémon Moon video games got there by using the elevator that Alolan Grimer is riding.
But not all of the locales are so obvious! The deep red background of Shiinotic may lead you to believe the delicate Pokémon is playing with fire. In fact, it’s Ula’ula Meadow, a field of beautiful crimson flowers with a distinctive wooden platform zigzagging through it. No doubt a Baile Style Oricorio is dancing somewhere nearby, even if it isn’t in the artwork! At first glance, Riolu seems to be running down a secluded beach—but you can see a lighthouse rising in the distance. Could it be the one in Akala Island’s Konikoni City?
There are even more Alola landmarks to be discovered on cards in the expansion. See which places you can recognize!