Oh hell no it is Emerging Powers and nothing will ever change my mind about this. This set is absolutely pathetic. There are zero cards of any noteworthy status. Absolutely none. The two full arts are of two of the most objectively stupid Pokémon designs ever. I’m not even a person who likes to circlejerk about the new Pokémon being bad and the originals being the best, but come on. These cloud-human abominations are just fucking stupid. Plus the artwork is pretty damn ugly too for them. The regular holos are mediocre as well… mainly killed, of course, by the horizontal line holo pattern. Why they changed the beautiful cosmo foil design to this is beyond me. At least the other weak sets (Base 2, Crimson Invasion, Fates Collide) have somewhat notable cards that some people like… I cannot think of a single person who likes the cloud men. It also suffers from second set syndrome, which basically means that it has all of the new Pokémon for its generation minus the starters and other cool ones that were in the first set. Usually the second and/or third set have a dip in quality because not all Pokémon are winners, and then they come back with Rayquaza and Mewtwo after that. I don’t know if that theory has weight or not but I believe it. Oh and I don’t think there’s a single card in this set that’s worth more than $3. Talk about a bargain.
Man I tried to like it… this is the first set I ever completed I think. All pack-pulled, not that there was anything challenging to get after buying one booster box (honestly the whole set might be cheaper than the box now but this was when it came out). I was probably about 11 at the time so it’s not like booster boxes grew on trees… one around my birthday and maybe one around Christmas and that’s it. I was so pissed when Noble Victories came out and blew this set out of the water… one of my most negative experiences in the hobby. So yeah I have a vendetta against this set, but I also hate it without that previous bias too. I try to be positive about most things but Pokémon Company didn’t even give me a bone here.
Have to go with Emerging Powers as well, as I personally don’t have a connection with the 2 chase cards in it.
Other hated sets, dont really bother me to be honest as they have some unique aspects to them that I find enjoyable i.e
Base 2: Cosmos holo variant of the base set holos + a few jungle rather than your typical galaxy star holofoil. Only way you can obtain these cosmos variants in english
Steam Siege: There are several cards in this set, where the artwork of the pokemon is its shiny variant. Golden azumarill, golden mega steelix, blue bisharp, come to mind. So if you are a shiny tcg collector, don’t know why you would skip on this set.
Crimson Invasion: The set doesnt really bother me as most others. It’s inclusion of Gyarados and Alolan Exeggcutor is what makes me dont mind this set at all
Emerging Powers for sure. Some other weaker sets at least had some chase cards. And although Base Set 2 was only reprints of previous sets and it was released way too soon after the sets themselves, it still gives me some nostalgic when I look at some of them now, and the cards that were reprinted from the Base Set are still the same solid artworks.
Emerging powers however… I couldn’t find any great artwork. There are some that are decent, like Lilligant, Zorua, Sawk, or Krookodile, but that’s about it…
Even when we’ve discussed it in the Set of Fortnight three to five of the same non-Holos were mentioned by multiple people. Every other 90+ cards are just forgotten and not memorable at all… (That reminds me, I need to post a new Set of Fortnight again…)
Back in the day my least favorite set would be Gym Heroes. It had no good playable cards except for a couple of trainers, and several of the Japanese deck exclusives were included as non-holo rares such as Brock’s zubat and Misty’s tentacool. Then Gym Challenge was released shortly after and had all the cool pokemons (Charizard, Venusaur, Mewtwo, 2 x Gyarados) and of course Rocket’s Zapdos that dominated competitive play. However, today I probably like both gym sets equally well. Neo Discovery suffered a bit from the same things with no good playable cards and less cool pokemons compared to the other neo sets.