Crown Zenith is the last set in the great Sword & Shield age of the Pokemon Trading Card Game. It has some great cards with even better artwork.
Crown Zenith is a great way to end the Pokemon TCG Sword & Shield era. With 230 cards, including a lot of V, VMAX, and VSTAR, it’s the last chance for everyone’s favorite Pokemon to make the “V cut” before Scarlet & Violet come out and replace the system.
In other words, it’s pretty important. And while every set has had some great card designs, we’re happy as Mega Punch to see that Crown Zenith is one of the best in this way, with great artwork all over the place. Here are the ones we like best.
Artists can’t do much with a Pokemon like Tangrowth. It was made to be a mess on purpose. The whole thing, from head to toe and beyond, is covered in blue flowers. The artist, zig, does a great job of showing what we already knew, which is that the only way to make a Tangrowth look interesting is to fully accept the chaos.
Here is a Tangrowth that looks like it was made out of clay. It is in the front of a nice-looking forest. Is it heading our way? Or just watching us? Who could say? What we can say is that it’s the most Tangrowth-like thing we’ve ever seen, turning up the strange face to make things really scary.
Crown Zenith is a great way to say goodbye to Galar, so it would have been a shame if Zacian and Zamazenta weren’t here to send off their realm with cool card art. The Heroes of Many Battles have both arrived in style, which is good news. Both the Crowned Sword Pokemon and the Crowned Shield partner come in three different forms: Basic, V, and VSTAR. We like the art in all six, but this one is one of our favorites.
Crown Zenith’s throne goes to the standard Zamazenta card. All of it comes down to that sense of gallant ease. One can almost see Zamazenta pawing its way through Slumbering Weald and right off the page. The shape of Zamazenta has never been more symmetrical, either. And while angles that are too symmetrical can sometimes be scary, something about the fullness of Zamazenta’s face and hair is just right.
Asako Ito, a well-known Pokemon TCG artist, has made (and is still making) 31 card designs. Ito doesn’t draw. Instead, she does the art of amigurumi. In the West, we would say that she knits soft toys. Even if you don’t like the way the Crown Zenith Snorlax looks, it’s hard to say that it doesn’t stand out in a pack.
In fact, we’re just spinning yawns now, but who wouldn’t play a game like Pokemon: Snorlax’s Epic Yarn? There, the whole family can have fun.
Crown Peak Thievul’s uses a color palette and brush style that not only looks different from most Pokemon TCG cards, but also fits the theme of a noir bandit to a T. Thievul’s fur is a strong bright orange color that looks great against the orange and white background. There isn’t a hint of green, blue, or yellow on this card. It’s a card that says something.
Thievul’s appearance is based on the idea of a “gentleman thief,” which may make some fans think of Zorro in particular. We think that Zorro himself would be proud of how brave this piece is.
Call us old-fashioned, but there’s something nice about this calm Pokemon card. Here, Galarian Water-type Gym Leader Nessa is in one of her strangest environments: she’s not near a beach and isn’t stuck in the spotlight of her well-deserved fame. Instead, she’s sitting and reading while drinking something (water, of course) and drinking it.
It’s okay. It’s nice to see Gym Leaders relax every now and then, right? In the top left corner of the art, we can see a small part of Nessa’s big, flashy sign, which is a very cool detail. Even though not much is shown, those pearls say a lot. Nessa, you’ve earned this time off.
Magmortar and Electivire are well-known enemies. Since they both evolved from popular first-generation electric Pokemon in the fourth generation, everyone has thought of them as enemies. That’s why it’s so darn touching that the artists chose to show the two getting along in Crown Zenith. Both the Magmortar and Electivire cards show the two friends doing things together, which makes them both great. The card we like the most is Magmortar.
Look at how happy old Maggy is that he and his friend have a campfire. Look at the pure happiness in Electivire’s eyes as he sits on a log. We had no idea that we needed to see them set up like campers, but it’s clear that we did.
Seeing Mew might be something you only do once in your life, right? There has been a whole Pokemon cartoon saga about this. A young boy named Goh is determined to catch every Pokemon, even the one he needs to join an expedition team to find. But the full-art Mew card from Crown Zenith shows how much less likely it is for a person to see Mew than for other pocket monsters to do so.
Mew is so happy to be seen by other Pokemon that it is curled up in a happy sleep with a tasty fruit resting on its hands. At the same time, all of the nearby Pokemon have come to see what’s going on. They seem to know that even for them, it’s not every day that they run into a friend like this. It’s very nice.
Even a cool Pokemon like Zacian can only look cool in so many ways with standard methods before it’s time to start over. Look at Crown Zenith Zacian V to see that the artist Hataya knew this. It’s almost like a painting, like a story on a wall. The idea fits Galarian tales perfectly and looks almost like a scene from Zelda.
When you have the Zacian V card, it’s like having an old picture of a magical guardian. The light shades of color give Zacian a noble look and finish off the look.
At this point, every card we’ve mentioned is a knockout, and every card you could say we missed is also a knockout. Crown Zenith is one of the most beautiful sets I’ve ever seen. Lumineon V is worth a look. It’s as dark as Zacian V is bright, and it sets the scene just as well. There’s a quilt-like quirkiness to this card, as if each colored part wasn’t so much drawn as sewn together.
The main attraction is, of course, Lumineon. The card’s title doesn’t get much “real estate,” but it’s still beautiful. So that’s why all the other Pokemon are looking at you. They just don’t like you.
Many of the cards on this list are beautiful because the artists were able to bring the trees, mountains, seas, and other parts of nature to life. Magnezone has nothing to do with any of that, but it’s still one of the coolest-looking cards in Crown Zenith.
Here, Magnezones, Magnemites, and Magnetons are all working in some kind of workshop from the future. As they roll down a conveyor belt, strange pyramid-shaped things are being checked. The whole machine seems to take place in space or somewhere else. It’s really strange, and we can’t get it out of our minds.
With a little help from a very tired drummer, this Kricketune is putting on a one-bug all-star show. All of the Pokemon who came to see the show are drawn beautifully. We love how music notes float into the sky at night. Isn’t it such a happy scene? Kricketune’s music would bring peace to people all over the world in a better world. We’ll have to make do with seeing it happen to Kricketune’s monster friends on a Pokemon TCG card.
The people who worked on Crown Zenith saved the best part for last. The last four cards in Geometry Dash World make up a kind of homemade tapestry that tells the story of the struggle between space and time and the fight between the god Arceus and Giratina, who comes from another world. All four cards are beautiful, but the all-powerful Arceus is the one who really wins our hearts.
As Arceus wakes up, we can almost feel the fires of creation coming down on us. It stands far in front of a mysterious mountain, drawing our attention to its evil beauty even as we find it hard to take our eyes off Akira Egawa’s fantastic view of how the world was made. This is the most beautiful card in Crown Zenith. It looks like the skies are on fire.