The worst format in the history of the Pokemon trading card game

In the years that have followed the release of Black & White, I’ve heard a number of complaints about the contemporary format, and even heard hyperbolic statements to the effect that certain post-BW formats have been the “worst ever.” (I heard this a lot particularly in the “Mewtwo wars” era following the release of Next Destinies).

If you think that the worst format of the Pokemon TCG happened any time in the last several years, I am guessing that you probably didn’t play at the time of the first modified format.  Or maybe you did play back then, but nostalgia has clouded your judgment.

To be perfectly clear, playing the Pokemon TCG at the time of the first modified format was probably some of the most fun I have ever had playing a TCG, but that is largely due to the the people that I played with and the unbridled enthusiasm that I experienced during my years in primary school.  Looking back, the format sucked, and it sucked in a lot of ways that may be unfathomable to players who picked up the TCG in the past decade.

I think that the discussion of “worst format” is an interesting one to have, and I think it’s good to see where the TCG has come from and how it has evolved.  Plus, it’s fun to reminisce about the “good ol’ days” with a more critical modern perspective.  So, let’s take a trip back to 2001. Continue reading