New Pokemon Information Regarding Championship Events

By Kohrok

Hey Pokemon Players! Kohrok here with another awesome article with Hardrock-Pokemon. As you may know, we’re heading into the meatiest part of this year’s tournament schedule for the Pokemon TCG, with Regionals the second weekend of November, City Championships running through December and January, State Championships after that, Spring Regionals, and of course, the now-announced United States Nationals in late June, all leading up to the 2012 Pokemon World Championships!

For those of you that haven’t been following the season thus far, never fear! There are still plenty of opportunities to earn an invite and find your place at the World Championships top tables. There are some changes to the way that works, however. The first primary change is in the ranking system. Previously, the Pokemon Trading Card Game had used a “K-Value” system to establish rankings, re-setting each year to a base of 1600 points, and allowing players’ ratings to increase and decrease with wins and losses. Depending on the importance of each event, assessed with a numeric “K-value”, the number of points that were won or lost differed.

This year, however, the system has changed. While the K-value system is still in place, it will only be used as a tie-breaking method, and not as an invitation system as it previously had. Now, a “Championship Points” system has been created, which has led to an increase in event attendance thus far, and looks to do so for the remainder of the year. Now, top finishers and finalists will receive “Championship Points” for their finish position, similar to the way some sports give points based on final position, such as in Track or Swimming. Based on the number of points a player accumulates over the season, the number of their “top finishes”, a ranking may or may not be given.

This new method means that you no longer lose points for losing games, creating an extreme incentive to go to as many tournaments as possible, in the hope that you may win an event, reaping a large point-award. Currently, there has been much debate as to what, if any, cutoff may occur for the invitation, but such news has not been made public at this time. Also private remains the number of “Play! Points” required to attend the Nationals tournament. Unlike in previous years, United States Nationals will NOT be open to any and all players. In response to growing player demand and other concerns, Pokemon has implemented a new rule for this year. Instead, each season of league, pre-release, tournament, and premier event that a player attends will now add “Play! Points” (not to be confused with Championship Points) to a player’s total. Once a specific amount of Play! Points are reached, a player will be eligible to attend the National Tournament.
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Pokemon 2012 Season Overview

By Kohrok

Greetings everyone! I hope that you followed Worlds as eagerly as I did, and are ready for the 2011-2012 tournament season just like me! We’ll go through the new Battle Roads Promo, the structure of events, and conclude today’s article with some thoughts on possible deck ideas for this coming year. Without a pause, let’s go!

We were fortunate enough to get our first scans of the new promo – “Victory Cup” today. It is available in 3 versions – a “Bronze” version with Victini, “Silver” with Victini and Snivy, and a “Gold” with Victini and the three starters. Like previous “Victory Medal” cards, it is stamped with the tournament season and year. Unfortunately, the promo is not a unique effect like Victory Medal, instead coming as what amount to a “Poke Ball” reprint. The card, although thrice as available as the old promo, now has almost no competitive value in a deck, although, admittedly, it looks incredible and would be fun to pull out in a league deck.

The next topic of discussion revolves around the tournament schedule for this year. Although not yet set in stone, our Battle Roads will run from Mid-September until Mid-October, with Regionals taking place in November. Wait, Regionals in November? Yes, for the first time, Pokemon will have 2 separate “seasons” of Regional tournaments. The first set will be followed by the post-Thanksgiving City Championships, the tentative March State championships, and, if the schedule follows last year’s, July Nationals. The season will, of course, culminate in the World Championships in August. We’ll also have Prerelease events sporadically placed throughout the season, with our first, Emerging Powers, already having come and gone, we look to our third Black and White set, which should be released in November, and according to my information, AFTER the first Regionals events. We also have the return of the Gym cycle, this time looking at Unova’s 10 Gym Leaders. The 8 seasons will each feature a different Energy Type, with promo cards including basic energy and Pokemon of the corresponding type. Unfortunately, there will be no Collector print as a promo, at this time.

However, that all is for the future, as even the first official week of league does not start until September 26th. September 17th brings the first Battle Roads – Fall, and with it, the deck ideas can commence. Any follower of the current HGSS-EP metagame will recognize key contenders for this fall, including Typhlosion Prime/Reshiram, Magnezone/Emboar, the Worlds-winning deck, Yanmega/Donphan/Zoroark, and with the release of Emerging Powers, the use of Vileplume or Gothitelle to block the infamous Gust Of Win(d)/Pokemon Catcher. Just as Power Spray was key in stopping Luxray GL Lv. X’s “Bright Look” Pokemon Power when it was in play, these two Stage 2’s offer a solution to Pokemon Catcher.
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Pokemon POP Cards Insider

By Leonie Herson

The POP cards, called Pokemon Organised Play, were sets of cards not able to be found in the main Pokemon card franchise. The English version of these cards had originated from Japanese promotional cards. The cards could usually be found being given away in 2 card booster packs within magazines, collector tins, value packs or at special events. This encouraged participation in the Pokemon card game.

There are nine POP series to date, with seventeen cards in each series. New series appear every six months as announced by Pokemon USA. Each series featured rare holographic cards and Pokemon EX. The chance of finding one of these cards was very low. POP cards are identified by the POP logo in the bottom right hand corner (a Pokeball) with its respective series number next to it. POP began distributing cards in September 2004, after the EX Fire red and Leaf green card series. It featured characters from the second and third generations. Continue reading “Pokemon POP Cards Insider”

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