The Pokémon Trading Card Game is all about attacking your opponent to knock out all of their Pokémon and win the game. It’s a simple game that almost anyone can pick up, play, and compete in—but there are alternative ways to get a victory.
Certain attacks might come with a nasty surprise attached to it in the form of “Special Conditions,” which are status effects that change the condition of a defending Pokémon after an attack.
There are five different Special Conditions in the Pokémon TCG, each with a unique effect. All of these Special Conditions can be healed by using certain cards, but when you don’t have any of these in your deck, these are the only ways to go about curing them.
When a card if affected by a sleep condition, it’s turned counterclockwise on the field and isn’t able to attack or retreat. When a turn comes to an end, a coin is flipped to determine if it stays asleep. If it lands on heads, the condition is removed—Tails, however, means the condition persists. The Pokémon can still be attacked during these instances, making it extremely vulnerable.
When a Pokémon is Burned, the card will take 20 points of damage and will have a Burned Marker placed on top of it. The Burned Pokémon will continue to take 10 extra points of damage after each turn unless a player successful gets heads during a coin toss.
The Pokémon can still attack, however, but will die unless a player gets a successful coin toss.
Confused Pokémon are placed upside down on the board. For every attack, a coin is flipped to see if it will register.
Getting heads means the attack will proceed as normal, while flipping tails during a coin toss will instead inflict the Pokémon with 30 points of damage. The attack also won’t go through.
The only way to cure a Pokémon with confusion is to retreat it back to the bench or through a Trainer card. A Confused Pokémon can also snap out of confusion if it obtains a new Special Condition, like Asleep or Paralyzed, instead.
Pokémon that become Paralyzed will be unable to attack or retreat for one turn, leaving them in a state of limbo. The card is also turned clockwise while on the board.
Any Pokémon card that gets Poisoned will have a Poison Marker placed on top of them. When each turns passes, 10 points of damage will be inflicted on the Pokémon unless it’s cured by a Trainer Card or retreats to the bench.