Pokémon’s Crimson Invasion expansion was released on 3 November 2017 in Booster Packs, cases, boxes, and Starter Decks. It is the second major expansion in the Pokémon Sun and Moon era with more than 120 new cards, eight new Pokémon-GX with unique Attacks, and two new Starter Decks, which offer a perfectly balanced game experience that leads to new and exciting matches. This expansion is legal for tournament play in both Standard and Expanded beginning 17 November 2017. The expansion also contains cards from the Japanese set “Awakened Heroes“ and “Ultradimensional Beasts“
Players will receive eight new Pokémon-GX, which will have alternate full-art versions, as well as Rainbow Rare versions. The new Pokémon-GX are Gyarados, Alolan Exeggutor, Alolan Golem, Silvally, and the first four Ultra Beasts: Nihilego, Buzzwole, Guzzlord, and Kartana.
However, some like Gyardos, Alolan Exeggutor, and Guzzlord simply require too much energy. Silvally, Kartana, and Alolan Golem on the other hand are more promising new additions. Nihilego finds itself in a tough spot where it has a really strong Ability, but it is not very good in a metagame where everyone plays at least three Guzmas.
Kartana is especially interesting thanks to its Ability, which is exactly the same as Enhanced Hammer. In addition, it has a very powerful attack, which allows you to draw a prize card. Alolan Golem has one of the most interesting GX Attacks so far, since it completely prevents your opponent from playing any cards from his hand during the next turn. Silvally itself does not seem too good, but because of its various types of memories, it is able to switch types and become one of the most versatile attackers in the game. Unfortunately, this set only includes the psychic and fighting type, but once more of them are released, Silvally is definitely going to be in play.
Among the regular Pokémon, there is a decent amount of potential for tournament play. Alolan Marowak allows you to grab as many fire energies from your discard pile, depending on how much energies are attached to your opponent’s Pokémon, and attach them to your Pokémon. Gengar also has a mechanic than involves energies, since it places damage counters on your opponent’s Pokémon whenever they attach an energy to their Pokémon. Lastly, Miltank also works with energies, since it heals the Pokémon you attach an energy to, but only as long as Miltank is active.
Of course, players are also presented with new Trainer cards, which bring new effects into the game. The most interesting Item cards are definatily psychic memory and fighting memory, which allow Silvally-GX to change types, opening up new strategies. The only important Supporter card is Lusamine, which allows you to grab a combination of two cards consisting of Supporter and Stadium cards, which is especially nice after the rotation of VS Seeker.
Crimson Invasion finally completes the set of golden basic energies with the addition of Water energies. The two special energies, Warp Energy and Counter Energy, are super interesting but how good they are is yet to be discovered. The focus of this set is clearly the addition of the brand new red GX, starting with the Ultra Beasts.