The Boundaries Crossed expansion is the seventh Black & White Series expansion, released November 7, 2012, and the first to be centered around Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, which was released only about one month beforehand. The Japanese counterpart, Freeze Bolt · Cold Flare, was the sixth Japanese BW era expansion, and was released in July of the same year. The English release contains many of the cards released within the Japanese release, in addition to most of the cards originating from the Japanese Keldeo Battle Strength Deck and National Beginning Set, as well as two cards first released worldwide in the English expansion: Black Kyurem and White Kyurem. Additionally, the Full Art print of Skyla was pulled forward from the Japanese Plasma Gale expansion in order to be released with the regular print. Both the English and Japanese releases are the largest expansions of the Black & White Series.
Boundaries Crossed totals at 153 cards (4 of which are Secret cards), causing it to be the third largest English TCG release ever, beaten out only by Aquapolis and Skyridge. The Secret cards are Golurk reprinted from Dragons Exalted (Dragon Blade in Japan), Terrakion reprinted from Noble Victories (Red Collection in Japan), Altaria reprinted from Dragons Exalted (Dragon Blade in Japan), and Rocky Helmet reprinted from Noble Victories (Red Collection in Japan). In both English and Japanese, these Secret cards are the first to feature golden borders, and they also utilize the special etching featured on Full Art cards.
The expansion features two Theme Decks, Ice Shock and Cold Fire, centered around Kyurem's brand new Formes, Black and White Kyurem, respectively. Each deck contains an exclusive coin featuring their respective Pokémon Forme. Both decks utilize both Dragon-type and Water-type Pokémon, but Ice Shock utilizes Lightning-type Pokémon while Cold Fire utilizes Fire-type Pokémon. The additional rule insert included within both theme decks erroneously credits 5ban Graphics as the illustrator of this set's promotional artwork, while the actual illustrator is Shin Nagasawa.
Many of the new Formes of Pokémon featured in Black 2 and White 2 make their debut in the TCG. Black Kyurem and White Kyurem are featured as both regular cards and Pokémon-EX. Keldeo and Meloetta debut in Boundaries Crossed; Keldeo is featured in both of its Formes while Meloetta is featured in its Aria Forme, and one of the Forces of Nature, Landorus, is featured in its Therian Forme. Additionally, Pokémon are depicted within many of the locations that are new to Black 2 and White 2. Aspertia City Gym and Virbank City Gym are released as Stadium cards within the Freeze Bolt · Cold Flare expansion; however, Virbank City Gym, along with many of the other cards in the Japanese expansion, were later saved for the English Plasma Storm expansion. The set names Freeze Bolt and Cold Flare represent the two signature moves for Black Kyurem and White Kyurem: Freeze Shock and Ice Burn. Many of the Pokémon cards also include updated Pokédex entries from Pokémon Black 2 and White 2.
Boundaries Crossed, and the Japanese Freeze Bolt · Cold Flare equivalent, feature 6 Pokémon-EX: Celebi-EX, Keldeo-EX, Cresselia-EX, Landorus-EX, Black Kyurem-EX, and White Kyurem-EX, as both regular art prints and Full Art prints. In addition to the 6 Full Art Pokémon-EX, this expansion features both Cheren, Bianca, and Skyla as Full Arts. The Bianca and Cheren Supporters sport their new Black 2 and White 2 design. Full Art Supporter cards become a staple for the make up of most of the remaining Black & White Series expansions.
Nagasawa's Promotional Keldeo artwork
The expansion is the first expansion to feature a brand new classification of Item cards: Ace Spec. These Item cards are extremely powerful, but with the drawback of being limited to 1 Ace Spec card per deck. Four Ace Spec were introduced in Boundaries Crossed: Computer Search, Crystal Edge, Crystal Wall, and Gold Potion. Crystal Wall and Gold Potion originate from the Japanese Freeze Bolt, while Computer Search and Crystal Edge originate from Cold Flare. Gold Potion allows 90 damage to be healed from the Active Pokémon without any drawback. Crystal Wall and Crystal Edge can be attached to Black Kyurem-EX and White Kyurem-EX, respectively, allowing Black Kyurem-EX to have 300HP instead of 180HP, and White Kyurem-EX's attacks to do 50 more damage. Computer Search has the same powerful effect as the Base Set print of Computer Search, but is now limited to 1 per deck, taking up the Ace Spec spot within a deck's 60 cards. In unlimited play, all prints are to be treated as an Ace Spec.
Usually, the fact that this expansion switches from featuring the original Pokémon Black and White to Black 2 and White 2 would mean the beginning of a new Series of the Pokémon Trading Card Game. However, the set remains part of the Black & White Series, the only Series representing Generation V. The set has additional characteristics that set it apart from the six previous Black & White Series expansions. The booster pack and Theme Deck artwork start being illustrated by Shin Nagasawa instead of by 5ban Graphics. Additionally, as with the start of most Series, the Ultra Rare card lineup is changed, which starting with Boundaries Crossed, includes Ace Spec and Full Art Supporters as normal staples for the next few expansions. The expansion logo also features Ice and Fire themes within the "Black & White" part of the logo, which continue though Legendary Treasures. All of these details, although would normally mean the beginning of a new TCG Series, can instead be seen as the most logical starting point for the next rotation.
The set contains a few running themes throughout the Abilities and attacks on its cards. Celebi-EX features the Ability Time Recall, allowing Evolved Pokémon to use the attacks of their previous evolutions. This Ability can be paired with Pokémon such as Charizard, allowing Charizard use of Charmeleon's Raging Claws attack for a damage output of up to 200 damage. Time Recall is also designed to pair well with Flygon and Vibrava, allowing Flygon access to both an Ability that spreads damage to all of the opponent's Pokémon and Vibrava's Sand Pulse attack that does the same. This combo was in turn designed to work with Dusknoir's Sinister Hand Ability, allowing manipulation of all damage on the opponent's side of the field. An additional combo introduced within this set is being able to use the Supporter Skyla in order to search out any deck's 1 Ace Spec card.
The Prerelease promo is Flygon from the BW Black Star Promos, which originated as one of the Japanese BW-P Promotional cards awarded to those who bought a booster box of the expansion. Officially, the English release of the set contains 149 cards. Between alternate holofoils, reverse holofoils, and Secret cards, the set contains 300 cards. A list of the non standard cards can be seen below.