Pokemon TCG ex Rules: A Complete Guide

Pokemon with extra powers, unleashed!


Pokemon TCG ex rules

Do you want to add some powerful Pokemon ex cards to your deck? If you haven’t read the rulebook yet, here’s an easy but complete guide about the latest Pokemon TCG ex rules!

Apart from types and evolution forms, Pokemon cards can also be categorized based on specific letters that come after their names. 

Examples of these letters are “ex,” “GX,” “LV.X,” “V,” and “VMAX.”

But for this post, we’re gonna be talking about Pokemon cards with ex on their names, including information about what they are, and how you can play them legally in casual or competitive games.

What Are Pokemon ex?

Regigigas-Ex · Next Destinies
Kyurem Ex · Ancient Origins
Altaria Ex · Paradox Rift

Pokemon ex refers to a type of powerful Pokemon cards that was first introduced in the EX Ruby and Sapphire set, all the way back in 2003.

The suffix “ex” means extra, which implies that Pokemon ex cards are not your typical Pokemon cards; these are Pokemon with stronger abilities and moves that aren’t present in their regular counterparts.

Pokemon ex cards are composed of various iterations, and they can be identified based on the ways of how the ex-suffixes are printed after their names. 

These are the Pokemon-ex, Pokemon-EX, and the Pokemon ex cards:

Mewtwo Ex · Ruby &Amp; Sapphire
Tornadus-Ex · Black &Amp; White Promos
Armarouge Ex · Paradox Rift
Pokemon ex

While these cards might look different based on their ex-symbols, they still share the same characteristic of a Pokemon ex, and the most probable reason behind the differences is to provide distinction on what set these ex cards belong to.

Are Pokemon ex Cards Rare?

Chien-Pao Ex · Scarlet &Amp; Violet Promos

All Pokemon ex cards are at least Ultra Rare, making most of them difficult to find in booster packs. For the same reason, these cards often fetch higher prices in the market, depending on their supply and demand.

Pokemon TCG ex Rules: Reminders Before Playing Pokemon ex Cards

Pokemon Tcg Ex Rules
Credit: The Official Pokemon YouTube Channel

Here are the ground rules regarding Pokemon ex cards according to the Pokemon TCG official rulebook:

Are Pokemon ex Legal?

Almost all Pokemon ex cards are legal to play in tournaments, and the legality of Pokemon cards relies more on your chosen format.

Check the regulation mark of a Pokemon ex card to see if it’s legal in the current Standard rotation.

For those playing the Expanded format, the only Pokemon ex card that is currently banned is Shaymin EX from the Roaring Skies set.

Shaymin-Ex · Roaring Skies

Like all other cards, every Pokemon ex is legal in Unlimited format.

How Many ex Cards Are Allowed in a Deck?

When building and playing a Pokemon TCG deck, you can have a max of four copies of the same Pokemon ex card in your deck.

For instance, if you want to play a Charizard ex from the Obsidian Flames, you can only add four of those cards in your deck, nothing more, nothing less.

Charizard Ex · Obsidian Flames
Charizard Ex · Obsidian Flames
Charizard Ex · Obsidian Flames
Charizard Ex · Obsidian Flames

You can still add other species of Pokemon ex, but they should also be limited to four copies as well.

It’s also legal to add a Pokemon ex of different iterations in your deck. 

Zapdos Ex · 151 (Mew)
You can have for copies of this Zapdos ex in your deck.
Zapdos-Ex · Plasma Storm
And also another four copies of this Zapdos EX.

For example, assuming you’re playing in Unlimited format, you can add four copies of Zapdos ex (Pokemon 151) to your deck, and you can also add another four copies of Zapdos EX (Plasma Storm), even if they’re basically the same Pokemon ex.

Lastly, the regular or non-ex form of a Pokemon card is different from its ex variant, so they can be counted as separate Pokemon cards in your deck. This means you can play four copies of this Arcanine card together with four copies of Arcanine ex in the same deck:

Arcanine · 151 Mew
Arcanine Ex · Scarlet &Amp; Violet

How to Play a Pokemon ex Card?

A Pokemon ex card can be played in the same way as Pokemon cards. Basic Pokemon ex cards can be played right away without evolving them, while Stage 1 and Stage 2 Pokemon ex cards require sending their previous forms in the field before they can be played.

Before adding a Pokemon ex to your deck, be sure to read its moves and abilities so you can fully understand how it can give you an advantage during games.

All Pokemon ex cards have the same rule box, stating that: “When your Pokémon ex is Knocked Out, your opponent takes 2 Prize cards.” 

Pokemon Tcg Ex Rule Box

This rule provides a certain risk for playing Pokemon ex, as it can either make you closer to victory or defeat. 

So, before putting your ex cards into play, consider the number of remaining Prize cards of your opponent, and how you can secure a victory before they can get knocked out by the opposing Pokemon.

Final Thoughts

Grasping the basics of Pokemon TCG ex rules is a great way to make your strategies more interesting and fun to play.

Just don’t forget that while they are very strong in the field, defeating one is worth two Prize cards, so always plan ahead when using a Pokemon ex.

Many meta decks today are based on the powerful abilities and moves of Pokemon ex, such as Gardevoir ex and Charizard ex decks. If you haven’t tried building them before, you might want to check our guides about them.

Also, for a more complete guide on the rules of Pokemon TCG, you can also read our tutorial on how to play the game.

Also read:


From his man cave in the Philippines, Celsos hoards a box full of Pokemon cards. He loves everything about Pokemon, but he also enjoys other things like playing video games, reading Tolkien's books, and writing. He currently works as the editor and writer for PokeCard HQ.


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