Black Market Prism Star
Black Market Prism Star

Black Market Prism Star
– Team Up

Date Reviewed:
February 19, 2019

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 2.33
Expanded: 2.35
Limited: 3.50

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is horrible. 3 is average. 5 is great.

Reviews Below:

vince avatar

Black Market Prism Star joins in the other situational Prism Star cards that won’t help you as much, simply because in spite of what kind of card it is. It is a Prism Star Stadium card which can be replaced with another Stadium regardless of prism star or not (and gets put into the Lost Zone), but can’t be affected by Item or Supporter cards. Attacks that remove stadium cards in play………will still discard them or put them in the Lost Zone. Once you get past that, Black Market requires you or your opponent to do something to interact it. If your opponent uses a dark deck, you would not want to play this since you may not be able to take prizes. Same can be said to your opponent trying to KO your Dark Pokémon with Dark energies attached to it.

Still, when such obstacles are absent, you get to possibly buy yourself a turn that you would’ve lost (when you use single prize Pokémon) unless you use a EX/GX, Tag Team, or certain Ultra Beasts manipulating prizes counts. Unfortunately, that still means you could still lose because knocking out multiple GX Pokémon means your opponent still takes 1 prize at a time instead of 2 and still win because they have taken all of the prizes. Pretty underwhelming overall; If it PREVENTED (all caps and bold text for emphasis) your opponent from taking prizes instead of reducing the amount they take, then this would’ve warrant consideration. Otherwise, it’s a pass for me.


  • Standard: 1.5/5
  • Expanded: 1.5/5
  • Limited: 3.5/5
21 Times Avatar

Black Market Prism Star (TEU 134) debuts in the Pokemon TCG from the Team Up expansion set.  If:

  1. A Dark Pokemon is KO’d and
  2. The Pokemon KO’d has Dark energy attached to it and
  3. The Pokemon is KO’d by damage from an attack… THEN …

The attacker takes one less prize card.

So if you KO a Zoroark GX with an attack, and that Zoroark GX has a Dark Energy attached to it, you only take one prize card instead of two.  If you KO a Weavile (BUS) with an attack, and that Weavile has a Dark Energy attached to it, you don’t take a prize card at all.

Important to realize: if you KO your opponent’s last Pokemon in play, even if Black Market is on the board, you still win the game.  You just take one less prize card.  Not that you care because… wait for it… right, you just won the game.  Black Market is pretty irrelevant.

This card, as well as Wondrous Labyrinth, received much attention in Team Up previews.  Both of these cards threatened to change the way we build our decks a little bit.  The consensus generally was that we would play more Stadium cards and cut down on Field Blowers because it goes without saying that leaving Black Market Prism Star in play would (theoretically) make it very difficult for you to beat a Dark deck with Dark Energy.

Because these Prism Star Stadiums are potentially so powerful (including Thunder Mountain and other Prism Star Stadiums from previous expansions), and because they can only be knocked off the board by other Stadiums, the general Theorymon was that we would have to play more Stadium cards in our decklists.  The main victim that would be supplanted by this increase in Stadium cards was Field Blower.

I will definitely say that my feeling is that we’ve seen more Stadiums and less Field Blowers.  I play a LOT of Wishful Batons and they rarely get knocked off.  My opponents definitely play a lot of Stadiums.  I have not played many – or any – Stadiums in my decklists lately because I really have been focused on putting early game cards in my hands.  I also haven’t been playing Field Blowers either.

I have only seen Black Market Prism Star once in 135 games this month.  I’ve yet to see Wondrous Labyrinth.  I will say that I see Thunder Mountain a LOT, and Heat Factory and Life Forest are pretty common as well.  However, I don’t feel like I really need to run Stadiums like I did when Parallel City was so common in the last rotation.  None of those Prism Star stadiums instill fear and are the gut punch that Parallel City was.  I felt like I had to run Stadiums in a meta with Parallel City.  Today, they seem pretty optional.  But I don’t really have any numbers to justify or support my feeling, I don’t have anything to quantify that feeling other than I’m winning 60% of my games so far this month and very few of my decklists contain even a single Stadium card.

I did play Black Market in a Zoroark TEU deck that I tried in a couple of games (it was bad but you can watch the video here).  Black Market didn’t ever make a difference, it didn’t reduce my opponent’s prizes off KO’s even once.  Granted, two games is WAY too small of a sample size for a quality attestation, but just from that snapshot, it seems to confirm my feeling that Black Market and Wondrous Labyrinth just won’t be effective in this Stadium filled meta.

I did actually win the single match I played against a deck that ran Black Market.  My opponent was playing a Tyranitar GX Darkrai GX deck, and I think he just got off to an awful start because he quit early on and I had a really good start with my Chandelure (LOT) deck (btw I’m 9 W 3 L with Chandelure this month, including wins against some pretty impressive opponents).  So it wasn’t really a fair representation for Black Market.  If you’re like me and cutting corners by leaving Stadiums out of your decklists, you’re absolutely leaving yourself vulnerable to an opponent that plays this card.  And if I start seeing more Black Markets, I’ll definitely have to adjust and play some Stadiums.  But until I really start losing games because I can’t knock Black Market off the board, I’m not adding stadiums to my lists solely to counter these Prism Star Stadiums.


Standard: 2 out of 5

If you’re looking for a statistical breakdown of what was played this weekend at Oceania, I took the data from the decklists available at LimitlessTCG and did some analysis on it here. This quantifies the “meta” a little bit and might give you some insight into what to expect at Collinsville or Cannes this weekend.

Otaku Avatar

Today we look at Black Market {*} (SM – Team Up 134/181), which would have been our 12th place pick after breaking a tie between it and two other cards. It did make my personal list as well, as my eighth place pick. Let me explain why. The first thing to remember is that this is a Prism Star card; so far, these at least look like they were all intended to be “better” than baseline cards, which is good because there are some serious drawbacks to them. First, while you can run multiple Prism Star cards in the same deck, you can only run a single copy of a particular Prism Star card; this means reduced reliability and chances to benefit from them. Either these are just a nice “bonus” to your deck’s strategy, or you’re taking a big risk building everything around a card you may use only once. Yes, even with recycling effects because Black Market {*} sends itself to the Lost Zone if it would otherwise have hit your discard pile. Being a Trainer means Jirachi (SM – Team Up 99/181; SM – Black Star Promos SM161), with a few more other worthwhile pieces of Trainer support in Expanded; so far, no modern anti-Trainer effects have mattered. It can be easy to forget, but you actually may only use one Stadium per turn, just like you can only use one Supporter during your turn; you also cannot play a Stadium from your hand if a Stadium with the same name is already in play. Stadium cards remain in play until discarded by another Stadium being played or a card effect. However, all Prism Star Stadium cards have an effect which states they the effects of either players’ Item and Supporter cards do not apply to it, at least while Black Market {*} is in play; this makes them less vulnerable than typical Stadium cards.

As for the specific effect of Black Market {*}, it reduces how many Prizes your Pokémon give up when they are KO’d. If that sounds too good to be true, that is because it is; there are three conditions which must be met for Black Market {*} to trigger:

  1. The Pokémon must be a [D] Type Pokémon.
  2. The Pokémon must have a source of [D] Energy attached.
  3. The Pokémon has to be KO’d by the damage from the attack of the other player’s Pokémon.

In addition, as a Stadium card, this effect is available to your opponent’s Pokémon when all the conditions are met; most decks won’t be able to take advantage of it, but some will. The [D] Energy requirement can be met with either a Basic Darkness Energy card or any other Energy card which provides [D] Energy at the moment of the KO. Still, decks which are mono- or mostly [D] Type will have the easiest time making use of Black Market {*}. As taking Prizes is the primary method of winning the game, giving up one fewer Prize each time a Pokémon meeting the above criteria is KO’d is very potent. Your opponent can still win the game, but it is much more difficult for most decks when they aren’t taking Prizes from KO’s! Single Prize Pokémon provide none, Pokémon-EX/GX – excluding Tag Team cards – provide only one, and Tag Team Pokémon – Greninja & Zoroark-GX should release in our next set – give up only two Prizes instead of the full three.

Unless your opponent finds a way to deal with Black Market {*}, which is a legitimate concern. Unless we go old-school in the Unlimited Format with you attacking something like a Rocket’s Hitmonchan which just used “Crosscounter”, I know of no way for one of your Pokémon to be KO’d by the damage from the other player’s attack during your turn. That means your opponent will always have a chance to use their own Stadium or a Pokémon-based effect to discard Black Market {*} before attacking and taking any KO’d. The effects of attacks other than damage can score KO’s without triggering Black Market {*}, as can non-attack effects like Abilities or those from Trainers or Energy. If you have something in play which isn’t a [D] Type or doesn’t have any [D] Energy attached, your opponent may be able to KO one of those instead, either by forcing it Active (such as with Guzma) or using something that can hit the Bench. Your opponent may just discard all [D] Energy attached to your Active before KOing it. There will even be rare times when your opponent may not even need to worry about Black Market {*}; if they only need to take one more Prize, it won’t matter if one of your [D] Type Pokémon-GX is worth one Prize instead of two when KO’d. If your opponent’s deck is more focused on control elements and/or winning through Bench Out, Deck Out, or an alternate win condition, they may not be KOing your Pokémon anyway, or at least, won’t be bothered as much by not taking Prizes when it happens.

With all that being said, Black Market {*} is still a great card for decks with at least a few [D] Type attackers running on [D] Energy. Even when decks were lacking a trick to recycle it, even when it was relatively easy to discard or work around, players still ran the Ace Spec Pokémon Tool card Life Dew. Life Dew only works when the Pokémon to which it is attached is KO’d and causes your opponent to take one fewer Prize from that KO. Black Market {*} can’t pull off many of the great Life Dew combos, like using Life Dew on something which KO’s itself or Eco Arm (formerly Puzzle of Time) to recycle Life Dew, but denying your opponent even one Prize under specific circumstances can still be game-winning (or rather, game-not-losing).  I believe such effects stack, so comboing with Life Dew means something like Hoopa-GX gives up no Prizes when KO’d, unless attacked by something which adds to Prizes taken. Sadly, I haven’t been able to test this card myself though I’m pretty sure I pulled one already on the PTCGO; getting the rest of the cards I wish to run with it is the trick. I’ve heard talk of some Guzzlord-GX going from gag deck to legit with proper backing… and Black Star {*} is part of that. I’ve seen an interesting [D] deck focused on single-Prize attackers; while the deck can’t rely on Black Market {*} the entire time, it can try and bait out your other Stadium cards before finally dropping Black Market {*}, and before that happens, it just goes for favorable Prize trades.

We also have early returns from this past weekend. Though the available decklists are still incomplete, the ones available over on Limitless show Black Market {*} in the 24th- and 31st-place Zoroark-GX/Lycanonroc-GX (SM – Guardians Rising 74/145, 138/145, 156/145) decks. It isn’t much, but it is more than many other SM – Team Up cards managed, including several that made the site and my personal top 11 (full tournament results pending). This is just one event, though; things could change dramatically, or at least prove less severe, in the next few weeks let alone the Standard Format lifespan of these cards. Still, we’ve got enough that I still have to give Black Market {*} its props… and good scores for all Formats.


Standard: 3.4/5

Expanded: 3.2/5

Limited: 3.5/5

Black Market {*} asks a lot of you, but in denying your opponent Prizes, it gives you a lot as well. Seems like a staple for [D] Type decks, so long as they run or can be tweaked to run a source of [D] Energy. I would have scored it higher except Zoroark-GX – the most commonly used [D] Type Pokémon right now – is usually fueled by Double Colorless Energy even in decks where Zoroark-GX is the main attacker.

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