A Beginner Guide to Pokemon Cards In 2024

Discover a beginner’s guide to Pokemon cards in 2024, as we discuss and explain the popular and diverse community card community.

A Beginner Guide To The Pokemon

A Beginner Guide to Pokemon Cards In 2024

Pokemon, fictional monsters who have taken the world by storm in recent years, originated in the 1996 Pocket Monster game. The franchise has grown since then to unbelievable heights, making these creatures fan favorites for decades. 

They have branched out into wildly successful TV series, collectibles, games, and even mobile apps. In October 1996, the first Pokemon Card set was released, becoming an instant hit and a global phenomenon. Now billions of cards have been produced worldwide.

What Are Pokemon Cards

The 10 Most Powerful Cards in Paradox Rift - Pokemon TCG

The Pokemon TCG is a trading card game where you collect cards and compete against other trainers. Each card showcases a Pokemon with its Health Points, abilities, weaknesses, resistance, and Pokemon type, including categories like Water, Fire, Grass, Dragon, Electric, and more. 

Cards can be found by opening Pokemon TCG products such as booster packs. Players play with a deck of 60 Pokemon Cards, where the aim is to construct the most powerful deck and eliminate their opponents.

Pokemon Card Types

There are different types of Pokemon cards which play distinct roles in the trading card game:

  • Basic Pokemon Cards: These represent the initial form of a Pokemon.
  • Stage 1 Pokemon Cards: These Pokemon cards are in their intermediate evolutionary stage, possessing enhanced abilities compared to their Basic counterparts.
  • Stage 2 Pokemon Cards: Representing the peak of a Pokemon’s evolution line, these cards boast the most powerful attacks.
  • Energy Cards: Fuel your Pokemon’s attacks by attaching Energy Cards to them. Each attack requires specific energy combinations, limiting the number of attacks you can unleash per turn.
  • Trainer/Supporter Cards: Unleash strategic maneuvers with Trainer/Supporter Cards, allowing you to heal your Pokemon, search for specific cards, draw additional cards, and even manipulate your opponent’s actions.

Pokemon Card Rarities

Pokemon Cards come in various rarities, with each level increasing the card’s value. The primary rarities are Common, Uncommon, Rare, Ultra Rare, and Secret Rare. Below are the rarity in Pokemon Cards:

  • Common cards, denoted by a black circle icon, are the most abundant and least valuable type of Pokemon Card. They are included in every Pokemon pack.
  • Uncommon cards, distinguished by a black diamond symbol, are slightly rarer than Common cards but still lack unique features.
  • Rare Pokemon Cards, marked with a black star icon, stand out with their shiny foil print on the Pokemon illustration. Additionally, Rare cards include Reverse Holo variants, featuring shiny foil on the Pokemon card’s body. The Base Set and Jungle Set cards, once highly prized collectibles, have lost much of their value over time.
  • Ultra Rare Ultra Rare cards are among the rarest cards available, possessing unique mechanics and abilities.

Outside of rarity, Pokemon come in many different forms. These determine the rule sets and general power when playing the TCG. Below are all the different types of Pokemon:

  • Ex
  • GX
  • Pokemon Legend
  • LV.X
  • Pokemon Prime
  • Pokemon Star 
  • Gold Rare
  • Mega Ex
  • Rainbow Rare
  • V
  • Vmax
  • Vstar

Secret rare cards are incredibly rare and have a card number above the advertised amount of cards in the set. These cards have beautiful artwork with a foil texture and are identical in terms of abilities and stats to a previous card in the set. 

How To Collect Pokemon Cards

Pokemon TCG Pokemon Scarlet & Violet 151 Ultra-Premium Collection

Pokemon cards are visually stunning and evoke nostalgic memories for millions who grew up with the Pokémon franchise. But how do you start on this journey of collecting? Well, follow these key steps:

Establish your objective: Determine your reason for collecting. Do you want the sheer excitement of opening Pokémon packs? Or do you aspire to assemble the ultimate collection, including some of the rarest cards? Defining your goal is crucial before delving into the world of collecting.

Set a budget: Before you begin, establish a reasonable budget that aligns with your financial means. This ensures you stay within your means and avoid overspending.

Choose your Pokémon cards: Select the cards that align with your interests and preferences. If you’re driven by nostalgia, seek out older cards from the earlier sets. These vintage gems are not readily available in regular stores, so explore auction sites like Goldin and PWCC to acquire them.

If you prefer the thrill of opening fresh booster packs and acquiring the latest cards, focus on purchasing the newest items from reputable stores or online trading card marketplaces like TCGPlayer. Also, consider playing the online Pokemon TCG Live game. This lets you test, explore, and sample a variety of cards.

Protect Pokemon Cards

Source: Amazon

Preserving your Pokémon cards is crucial for maintaining their value. Fortunately, it’s a straightforward process with numerous options to choose from.

Penny Sleeves: Begin by placing all your valuable cards inside penny sleeves. These inexpensive plastic sleeves shield your cards from scratches and other forms of damage. 

Next, you have several options for storing your sleeved cards:

Binders: Employ a Pokémon card binder, a large display binder with designated slots for your cards. These binders allow you to organize and store hundreds of cards in one convenient location while enabling you to view and display them without direct contact.

Top Loaders: For your most prized cards, consider using top loaders, and sturdy plastic cases that offer the highest level of protection. While they can only hold one card per case, they provide exceptional security for your valuable possessions.

Double Sleeving: For a more affordable approach, double-sleeve your cards to add an extra layer of protection against damage. This method involves placing your card inside two protective sleeves, offering enhanced defense without breaking the bank.

Gameplay Basics

Goldhengo ex Sample Hand - Pokemon TCG

In the Pokemon TCG, 2 players battle against one another. Each player can have six Pokémon cards in play at a time, with five resting on the bench and one occupying the active position. Only the active Pokémon can attack. Basic Pokémon can be deployed immediately, while evolution Pokémon require their basic counterparts to be in play first.

Energy cards fuel every attack. To execute an attack, a Pokémon needs the required amount and types of energy cards attached to it. Only one energy card can be attached per turn. Trainer cards provide strategic support, offering various actions to benefit your team. Each deck can contain a maximum of 60 cards.

Every Pokémon card has hit points (HP), representing its resilience against damage. Once a Pokémon’s HP is depleted, it is knocked out and replaced by a card from the bench. Victory is achieved by either drawing all of your opponent’s prize cards, eliminating all of their Pokémon cards, or forcing them to draw from an empty deck at the start of their turn. If you want experience, you should consider practicing on the Pokemon TCG Live game. You can do this via mobile or Desktop and it has NPC you can battle against or players. For any new player reading this article, a Beginner Guide to Pokemon Cards In 2024, consider spending some time online to familiarize yourself with the game.

Standard vs Expanded

The Standard format is the primary format for the Pokémon TCG. It adheres to the official rules without any modifications. Standard is the only format that undergoes rotation, meaning that only the most recent cards are allowed in Standard decks. Consequently, when a new expansion set is released, it remains legal in the Standard format for a limited period, at most a few years.

To determine whether a card is legal for Standard play, refer to its regulation mark located in the bottom-left corner. Then, simply check the latest updates on the official Pokémon TCG website, where they announce the valid regulation marks for Standard play.

The Expanded format, on the other hand, allows cards as far back as the Black & White series. This means that older sets, such as the Black & White base set or XY base set, are all legal in this format. The Expanded format also enforces a number of card bans to maintain a balanced and playable environment. Compared to the Standard format, the Expanded format offers a faster-paced and more diverse gameplay experience. However, we recommend Standard because it’s allowed in most tournaments. Let us continue on a Beginner Guide to Pokemon Cards In 2024.

The Rarest and Most Expensive Cards

While there are thousands of Pokemon Cards, only a select few command a significant fortune! To identify rare cards, focus on vintage cards printed before the 21st century, secret rare cards, and any cards with unique features. A few of the rarest and most expensive cards are:

Pikachu Illustrator

Pikachu Illustrator -Pokemon TCG
Source: Card Collector

Price: $5,275,000 / £4,234,566 / €4,832,163 / $7,238,091 CAD

A few trainers received this card during a 1997 Illustrator competition, just a year after the release of the Pokemon Base set. Only a handful of these cards have ever been seen, and even fewer have been officially graded. 

In 2022, YouTuber Logan Paul set a record by purchasing a PSA 10 Pikachu Illustrator for the equivalent of $5,275,000! It’s fitting that the rarest card features the most iconic Pokemon of all time, Pikachu, who embodies Pokemon all on his own.

Pikachu No.2 Silver Trophy

Pikachu No.2 Silver Trophy - Pokemon TCG
Source: Dicebreaker.com

Price: $444,000 / £356,426 / €406,726 / $609,234 CAD

Out of the 14 printed copies of the Pikachu No.2 Silver Trophy, only one has achieved the coveted PSA 10 rating. This card was awarded to the second-place finisher in the Lizardon tournament, widely regarded as the first major Pokémon TCG tournament. Recently, this historic card fetched an astonishing $444,000 at auction.

1st Edition Shadowless Holographic Charizard

First Edition Shadowless Holographic Charizard - Pokemon TCG
Source: PWCC

Price: $420,000 / £337,159 / €384,741 / $576,303 CAD

A globally recognized Pokémon, Charizard requires no introduction. It’s no surprise that its card is not only the most popular Pokémon Card but also one of the most famous trading cards of all time, originating from early versions of the base set.

This card has been the most sought-after by collectors for over 25 years! At an auction, this card fetched an impressive $420,000.

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Thank you for reading A Beginner Guide to Pokemon Cards In 2024 Article. We provide the latest news and create guides for Pokemon TCG, Baldur’s Gate 3, ARK Survival Ascended, and more. This guide was created in collaboration with Maks Gaming author. Ensure to visit their site for more of their work.