Set of the Fortnight #35 - EX Ruby & Sapphire

The random name picker has spoken again (after weeks of silence, my bad… :relieved: ). This time it’s EX Ruby & Sapphire:

EX Ruby &

Favorite cards in the set
Worst cards in the set
How you feel about this set in general
EX Ruby & Sapphire was the first set of the EX era, the era with the most Pokémon TCG sets which would span almost four years. The English set was released in June 18, 2003, and was the first set produced by Nintendo after they took over the Pokémon license from Wizards of the Coast. This was also the first set to feature Pokémon from the third generation and the Ruby & Sapphire games, which is where its set name originated from. The prefix EX stands for “extra”, as in the extra power these Pokémon-ex brought into the game.



Although the Holofoil cards are great as well, I personally think this set contains some great non-Holo Rares, Uncommons, and Commons. And I also have a very nostalgic feeling when looking at most cards from this set personally. Even though I’ve collected since the Base Set, most of the cards from this set are more nostalgic and memorable to me. Maybe because I was too young in the very early days to remember it in a lot of detail, or more likely: because I still see the WotC era sets mentioned on a daily basis on forums like here, whereas the Commons of a set like this isn’t mentioned that much.

Here some of my favorites:

This set also contains my favorite Pokémon-ex card (although I never owned it as a kid, and actually still don’t own it):

I probably even liked and appreciate it more after I saw this amazing swirl placement:

The Electabuzz does give me loads of nostalgic and is pretty epic as well. Both me and my little brother had this card in our youth (and I still have it actually):



I’m still not sold on this set so I’m excited to see all the different favorites of people. Maybe it’ll sway me to expand my collection to include these too :blush:

My favorite card from this set by far is the Dustox. Flying over the evergreens with the low sun seamlessly melting into the holographic pattern, simply majestic. I also agree about the strength of the uncommons/commons/non-holo rares, I think that is a particular strength of the early EX-sets and the Johto E-readers.

One thing I enjoy about the first three EX sets are the 6/6 booster box rates of EXs and holos. In proportion to the product released, this set has literally half the amount of regular holos compared to the pre-hyper rare Wotc sets. Combine that with the seriously low print run, and the future of these cards on the PSA market is going to make for some interesting reading.

Wait, the EXs for this set were a 1:1 pull ratio to Holos? Now that I think about, I don’t think I understand the pull rates for EXs in the EX era. K always thought it was EX:Holo at around a 1:3 or 1:4 ratio?

1:1 for the first three. Magma Vs Aqua, although E-reader, has it differently if I remember correctly. It has the 1:3-1:4 ratio that became the “standard” for quite a few sets.

What i love the absolute most about this set is how sparkly the holo frame for the ex cards are. Starting with ex Sandstorm, they added a slightly white fade to the edges of the card frame, compared to exRS which is all holo. Good luck finding a raw card with a flawless bottom edge.


Pretty good set, maybe a little over looked by most but I personally like it. Big fan of the holo beautifly and mightyena.


It’s got an all-time great artwork for Wailmer

Fun set with some great cards. These ex cards were bangin when they were being released, the set was only slightly soured by the fact that I wasn’t totally sold on gen 3.


I like Ruby & Sapphire. Yes, it’s one of those sets that started a generation, but considering that I think it’s very good. The ex cards in this set are a bit underwhelming, especially the attacks - the first ex cards weren’t that very powerful). But they still look nice and glittery fat border is cool.

I think my number one favorite card from this set had to be Gardevoir. Yes - it’s a generic Sugimori art. But for some reason it works well here. Especially with the holo background.

Here are some more of my favorites:



This set sucks and its only value is nostalgia and as the first non-WOTC set. A good portion of the artwork is standard, stock sugimori art in the same way “base” sets tend to be, and it doesn’t have the same charm as the rougher watercolor Sugimoris of yore.

The ex’s are really ugly, with the tenebrism of a Baroque painting and garish poses, mostly from artists who are not even recognizable. Not to mention, giving up 2 prizes has always been a mechanic that’s annoyed me for introducing power creep, even if this original slate of ex’s is hilariously underpowered. Sneasel and Hitmonchan are okay.

Mitsuhiro’s Manectric is one of the few standout cards – the intimidating posing, the red tinted clouds above, all give the card an amazing vibrancy.

Everything else? Boring or off-putting. This set is one of the worsts, I’ll die on that hill.

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some of the art is dope


The artwork from this set and other early gen 3 sets is comparable to Skyridge tier don’t @ me

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i have to say, ex series artwork is "ex"cellent.


I absolutely love this set; in my opinion, the EX-era up until Team Magma vs. Team Aqua has the best art in the game. I personally prefer both Sandstorm and Dragon to RS, but RS has some standout, beautiful cards: art-wise, Sceptile #11, and just general aesthetics, Mewtwo ex. This set is also so cheap to collect (by far the cheapest EX-era set): I think it cost me under $300 to put together a complete set (all holos, exs, reverse holos, and non-holos). Probably is slightly more expensive ATM, but still is super cheap (although I think it’s probably because the ex pull rate was obscenely high so the exs are dirt cheap). Literally every card except Mewtwo ex is under $20.

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I love all the original ex’s. Favorite is Mewtwo ex from this set :slight_smile: Greetz Mcorey haha had to do that one time as a joke. I was just telling you I love your signatures :slight_smile: @quuador

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Ah yes the set of cards that got thrown out by my parents.
You will be missed.

Some of my favourites:

And all the ken sugimori artwork (I think some of these should have been holos instead):


my contribution. A fun set. For the reverse holos, I actually prefer the “stamped” format that came in later EX series. But still like these cards. Love that the holo effect goes over the whole EX card in these


I’m a big fan of the exs in general, as it provides a lens as to just how much better looking English Pokémon cards could look with silver borders. Despite the exs of this set having near zero playability in the competitive scene, Gardevoir, Blaziken, Delcatty, and Swampert were all critical in the most successful decks during its time and compensated in the holo department.

I’m in love with Nishida’s Delcatty artwork in RS, and can join in on the praise of Arita’s Manectric. The colors are bold when compared to Sword & Shield, which feel washed out and dry. This set marked the beginning of an era that competitive players look nostalgically upon, as well as fans that grew up loving Hoenn. While there are several other ex sets that have more clout than this one, RS still has a place in my heart.

Also, the red and blue and silver of the booster pack is *chef’s kiss*


I think this is one of the last sets I collected as a kid. I loved Ruby and Sapphire. I have my Lapras EX and the really cool Blaziken from my old childhood collection. The mudkip #60 from this set is so funny. He looks like he has seen some stuff that can’t be unseen.

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