Creatures Reveals TCG’s New Focus on Five Weaknesses, Dragon Likely Removed

My friend Joshua Yehl at IGN has conducted an e-mail interview with Creatures to discuss the new changes to the Sword & Shield TCG.

It appears the TCG is being rebalanced to focus on Weakness. In the interview, Creatures stated it wants to focus on five Weakness types: Grass, Fire, Water, Lightning, and Fighting.

In other words, Creatures wants players to have an easier time hitting for Weakness by simplifying the number of them. This means most cards in this generation should be weak to one of those five types. We can already see this in the first Sword & Shield set: 137 of the 155 Pokemon are weak to one of those five types (88%). 49 of the 62 Pokemon in VMAX Rising have Weaknesses to one of them (80%).

In previous generations the variety of Weaknesses was much greater, which made the Weakness mechanic less relevant. It also made it harder for players to build decks to counter others since there were so many different Weaknesses.

This is also why Fairy was removed: only the Dragon-type was weak to it, making it too specific to exist. Moving Fairy to Psychic allows Creatures to use an established type that other Pokemon share. This simplifies the game by eliminating a fringe type that only one type used and that only one other type was weak to. This is also why Poison Pokemon were moved to the Darkness type, so they could have one of the five Weaknesses (Fighting). Keeping them Psychic would mean many more Psychic cards with a Darkness weakness, creating a sixth main Weakness.

You may have noticed Dragon cards have been missing since the era started (although there is no official word they’re gone yet). Dragon is even less relevant than Fairy when it comes to Weakness because nothing is weak to Dragon and its only Weakness is Fairy. Since Dragon’s only Weakness was literally deleted, and Creatures wants to focus on five main Weaknesses, Dragon also doesn’t have reason to exist under this system. Creatures may have removed it in an effort to consolidate the types.

Furthermore, most Dragon Pokemon are dual-typed; only 12 are pure Dragon-type. All Dragon-type Pokemon in the Sword & Shield era so far have been represented as their other typing (Rayquaza is a Colorless card to represents its Dragon/Flying typing and Dragapult is Psychic to represent its Dragon/Ghost type). Perhaps pure Dragons like Druddigon will be Colorless cards like in previous generations?

The interview also confirmed that Fairy Pokemon (as Psychic cards) will have a Metal Weakness. Thus, the era’s type breakdowns will be like so:

Game Type TCG Type TCG Weakness TCG Resistance
Grass Grass Fire None
Bug Grass Fire None
Fire Fire Water None
Water Water Lightning None
Ice Water Metal None
Electric Lightning Fighting None
Psychic Psychic Darkness* Fighting*
Ghost Psychic Darkness Fighting
Fairy Psychic* Metal None*
Fighting Fighting Psychic None
Rock Fighting Grass None
Ground Fighting Grass None
Dark Darkness Grass* None
Poison Darkness* Fighting* None
Steel Metal Fire Grass*
Normal Colorless Fighting None
Flying Colorless Lightning Fighting
Dragon ? ? ?

*Denotes a change starting in the Sword & Shield era.

Thanks goes to PMJ for helping me with this story, as I’m currently suffering from a minor dodgeball concussion and am having trouble thinking straight. XD