The latest set for Pokémon—Battle Styles has been released, and if you're anything like me, finding sealed products for the set in the wild has been its own challenge! While prices for booster packs settle down, the next best thing to opening packs yourself is buying into the craze of "Box Breaks" popping up on youtube, twitch, and other streaming platforms and websites. Whether you're completely new to Box Breaks or a veteran, Trainer Zack has you covered so you can get the most out of your next Box Break!
Through determination, luck (and buying on TCGplayer), you obtain a full box of Battle Styles Booster Packs, and you decide to split it with your friends to offset the cost of the box. After buying into the "break," each person is given a card type, and they get all the cards of that type across all the packs opened. This gives players the opportunity to get the cards they're looking for from a set at potentially lower prices than just buying the singles. It also means not having to buy an entire booster box, and then have to find ways to sell the pieces they don't plan on keeping or playing with.
There's some variation on this, but most Box Breaks follow these rules:
As the "chase" cards for each set are different, slots are typically formed of a few card types so they're equal for each person in the break. For Pokémon, these slots can currently include the following types:
Each set may differ from this list by a little, but these make up the majority of sets and the card types you might get from your latest box break. Now that you have the basics of what makes a Box Break so special, you're ready to buy into your first box break! Let's dive into what makes Battle Styles unique, and what to watch for so you can make your first box break a great one!
Battle Styles reintroduces Alternate Art versions of cards, in addition to the other higher rarities of cards like Full Arts and Secrets. And, rather than having the most expensive cards in only one slot, this set has a few outstanding hits that can be found in different slots of a break. However, two slots still dominate the set with the most expensive cards, and will be the slots to watch in any Battle Styles Break: Fighting Pokémon and Trainer Cards. The Fighting Pokémon in this set include each Urshifu V/Vmax with three versions of each card for a total of 12 cards at Ultra Rare or above. The Trainer cards, though not as "flashy," are typically one of the "safest" slots in a Box Break as any of the Full Art or Secret Supporters could be in the $20-$60 price range alone.
Though the Darkness Pokémon only contains seven "hits," product-hover id="234060" and product-hover id="234104" more than make up for the lack of variety! If you get the Darkness Type in your Box Break, be sure to watch for any of these Pokémon to get pulled:
After the product-hover id="232496" in Shining Fates, the Fire Type Pokémon leave a lot to be desired. If you get this type in your Box Break, you're banking on getting a product-hover id="234039" or either of the Victini VMAX to break even.
As mentioned above, the Fighting Type Pokémon in this set are the main attraction! As the face card of the set, expect to see plenty of Urshifu in either form and, if you end up with this type for your box break, keep an eye out for alternate arts!
Rating: SUPER HYPE!
The Grass Type Pokémon "hits" in Battle Styles offer a sliver of more variety than Fire Type, but that doesn't make this slot much better. Kricketune V may be worth more down the line as players find a place for it competitively, which might make you feel better if you end up with this type in your Box Break. But the only real "hit" here is a $20 meme in the form of Flapple VMAX.
The Lightning Type Pokémon in Battle Styles have the same issues as the Fire Types, but this time in yellow! There's only one Pokémon V in Lightning and only a single other "hit" crosses the $1.00 price point. If you happen to get Lightning Type as your Box Break, your best bet is it's paired with one of the better types as well.
Rating: A Very Sad Gripe
Stoutland V may be big, but he isn't big enough to carry this type alone. Only a single card in this type crosses the $1.00 price point, so if you get this as your slot in a Box Break, you're probably losing money on the shipping fees.
Rating: An "it's not even worth the envelope it ships in" Gripe
Though they might be creepy, you'll be happy to spot a Mimikyu in your break! Mimikyu V and Necrozma V both show up in this type for Battle Styles, and though they aren't the jackpot like some other types, the full art versions of these cards could make up for the initial cost of the break!
There is only one Metal Type Pokémon V, but Corviknight V's a really solid addition for competitive Metal Decks, which typically means it'll have a strong price point too! Along with Corviknight V, Bronzong also shows up in this set as a Holo Rare worth more than some of the other Pokémon V in the set, so keep an eye out for either of these Pokémon in your break!
The Water Type is the final type of Pokémon found in Battle Styles, and it has one of the "elusive" chase cards of the set: product-hover id="234043". The Water type slot mirrors the Darkness type with a single Pokémon V that has an additional version and a Secret Rare "Gold" version of a Pokémon in the set. Every version of Empoleon V and Octillery can help you break even, so watch for these Pokémon in your break!
The Trainer slot comprises all of the Full Art and Secret Rare versions of Trainers, Tools, and Supporters. Full Art and Secret Rare Supporters are typically some of the more expensive cards in a set, and can maintain their value after the release window of the set. Though not as exciting as some of the other types, netting any of the Secret Rare Supporters can set up a great Box Break!
Rating: Super HYPE
One of the other exciting things Battle Styles included are two Special Energies: product-hover id="234107" and product-hover id="234109" at Secret Rare. As these Special Energies don't "quite" fit into any other slot given they can count as two types of energy, they exist as their own separate entry. If you're buying into a Box Break for Battle Styles and get one of the weaker slots, there's a chance these might be included in your spot to even things out a bit more!
Rating: Hype (even if it's only two cards)
That wraps up all the potential spots you could have if you decide to "break in" to the Battle Styles Box Break territory! Here is a quick breakdown for which spots will excite you the most, or might make you upset enough to buy into another:
Ask for a Reroll Spot:
There are a lot of exciting cards in this set that I talk a bit more about in my article: Buyer's Guide to Pokémon Battle Styles.
And there's plenty of reason to buy into a Box Break so long as the price is right! As is the case with buying any of these products, make sure to do the research first so you know what you're buying into!
If you want to show off any particularly snazzy breaks (or just want to taunt me with your product-hover id="234079"), you can find me at @thezachkattack where I'll be lamenting my inability to find any Battle Styles packs anywhere locally!