Fossil Excavation Map
Fossil Excavation Map

Fossil Excavation Map
– Forbidden Light

Date Reviewed:
June 29, 2018

Ratings Summary:
Standard: 2.50
Expanded: 3.00
Limited: 2.75

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

Reviews Below:

aroramage avatar

Man it feels like it’s been ages since the last review, hasn’t it? Even though it was only a couple of days ago, it might feel like it’s been a while. In internet terms, a single day feels like a thousand years. And you know what happens after a thousand years? Fossils start showing up.


Fossil Excavation Map is an Item card that lets you find an Unidentified Fossil in either your deck or in your discard pile and add it to your hand. Unidentified Fossil, in turn, is an Item card that can be played as a Pokemon with 60 HP and is mainly used to evolve into stuff like Tyrunt and Amaura.

Bringing something like this into the game makes for a more consistent means of getting out Fossil Pokemon, which really says a lot considering over the years how Fossil Pokemon have had a really hard time being reliable and thus even remotely playable. Now you’ve got an instant search card for exactly what they need! Granted, I believe Evolution rules still apply, but you’ve got a much better chance of getting out your Fossil Pokemon now than you did when you had to look at the bottom 7 cards of your deck for the Pokemon.

…I’ll never forget that mechanic.


Standard: 3/5 (a much needed boost for Fossil lovers)

Expanded: 3/5 (but it only works with the newest method of Fossil Pokemon)

Limited: 2.5/5 (and it does require a lot of elements)

Arora Notealus:…okay, I know it hasn’t been that long, and it doesn’t even feel like it was that long, but needless to say, even in what can be a relatively short time frame, a lot can change. Fossil Excavation Map helps provide Fossil decks with the extra boost that they really needed to become better. It’s like an improved version of the Mysterious Fossil card way back in Fossil era.

Side Reviews: Zygarde-GX + Bonnie – surprisingly, Zygarde-GX hasn’t seen a lot of play, despite being a powerful Pokemon in its own right. Ultimately though it’s not because Zygarde-GX really lacks something, outside of possibly a few good Stadiums to knock around for Bonnie, but he has to compete with some very powerful Fighting Pokemon right now, namely Buzzwole-GX. The latter continues to have a strong presence in the game, and that’s pushed Zygarde-GX out for the time being; don’t sleep on it though, cause cards like Max Elixir and Strong Energy are looking to rotate out, which while that weakens Zygarde-GX as well, it really hits Buzzwole-GX pretty hard.

Diancie <Prism> – conversely, Diancie <Prism> has seen a LOT of play in Fighting decks, all thanks to its general all-purpose damage-boosting Ability. Can’t really say no to a card that acts like a Strong Energy to everything without the Energy attachment! Even at one copy per deck, Diancie <Prism> is doing enough to support the top deck of the format, and that’s what’ll likely keep it relevant for the next few months.

Malamar – what can be said? He’s been a very big part of the Ultra Necrozma-GX deck, as should come as no surprise, and he’ll likely be a big part of any Psychic deck from now on. I’m sure eventually we’ll get to a version of this kind of Ability with every Type – we’ve got it for Lightning and Metal already, with Fighting having a couple of pseudo-versions. Come to think of it, wouldn’t it be perfect for Grass or Water? 

Weekend Thought: What did you think of this week’s cards? Were they really good? Really bad? Is Eneporter good for Special Energy users or just a mediocre card? Is it necessary or unwarranted? Can Fossil Excavation Map and the Type changes to Empoleon and Dialga-GX bring up the power of these other decks?

vince avatar

Fossil Excavation Map provides a method to get a Unidentified Fossil from either your deck or your discard pile, ready to be played from your hand unless you are under item lock. For Unidentified Fossil, you can play it as a Basic Colorless type with 60 HP that cannot retreat. You can use it to tank smaller hits and you can even discard this card so that you can deny your opponent from taking a prize card. However, if that fossil is knocked out, then your opponent will take a prize card.

The heart of the matter is if various Pokemon that evolves from Unidentified Fossil are seeing competitive play. So far there’s Rampardos, Bastiodon, Tyrantrum, and Aurorus that are stage 2 that could be played with Rare Candy. We have yet to have a competitive fossil Pokémon, but for the propose of today’s card, it will score average across the board, because it does one thing very well, improving consistency. It would’ve been nice to find Unidentified Fossil from your prizes though.

Standard: 3/5     Expanded: 3/5     Limited: 3/5

21 Times Avatar

Fossil Excavation Map (FLI 107) – not to be confused with FAC Fossil Excavation Kit – found its way into the meta from the Forbidden Light expansion set.  This item card basically allows you to grab an Unidentified Fossil card from either your deck or your discard pile.  Gotta hand it to Pokemon, they definitely made it MUCH easier to get fossils on to the bench.  If only they’d made some way to get them to their Stage 2 evolutions more quickly.  Or maybe given them a more reasonable attack cost.

Rampardos (UPR 65) and Tyrantrum (FLI 69) are the two main fossils we’ve seen in the last two expansions, but neither of them has seen any success in either IRL or on PTCGO.  Granted, that’s mostly because Buzzwole is now so dominant that Stage 2 decks can hardly resist it.  Maybe in a format that was completely GX free and all single prize Pokemon, maybe then Rampardos and Tyrantrum might have a fighting chance, but right now, it’s great that Pokemon made it super easy to get fossils into play.  Unfortunately, they’re just  not that competitive against the top tier decks.


Standard: 1.5 out of 5


I actually didn’t run this when I was trying fossils, and I think the common consensus was to run Order Pad, that way you might be able to get other items you need as well.  However, it’s probably worth teching in a couple because chances are you’ll run into one of them early on and that will help you thin your deck that much faster.

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