Pokemon World Championship Masters Key
- Release Date: 2010
- Grading: BGS 9
- Pokemon card value at auction: $26,900
In 2010, the best pokemon cards players around the world were flown into Waikoloa Village, Hawaii for the World Championships. Upon arrival, contestants were given a Master Keys Pokemon card.
Because the item was only printed for participants at the tournament, only 36 of these in total were ever created, making it technically one of the most rare Pokemon cards to ever exist in the hobbys nearly 25-year history.
Despite only being intended for those at the event, one of these made there way out to the public and was sold for an astonishing $26,900 in August 2020. A pretty sweet reward to receive 11 years later.
Pokmon Trophy Card Neo Summer Battle Road Number 2 Trainer
Fukunishi Tomoki was the 2nd place Junior Division winner of the Kanto region tournament of the 2002 Neo Summer Battle Road. As such, he received this Number 2 Trainer card, which was the last year that displayed both the region and winners name, making this an extra unique piece of history. It also has artwork from Pokémon legend Ken Sugimori. Being a trophy card, there was only ever a minimal number given out, so its surprising that such a one-of-a-kind example ended up for auction in 2021, achieving an extraordinary price of $34,100.
Pokmon Japanese Promo Tropical Mega Battle Tropical Wind
An ultra-rare promo card – one of only a dozen ever made
Sold for $65,100 in October 2020
Only 12 Tropical Wind cards were produced as promo cards for the 1999 Tropical Mega Battle, a precursor to the Pokémon World Championships, making it one of the most valuable Pokémon sets around.
The Tropical Mega Battle saw 50 players from around the globe take part in a tournament for the trading card game in Honolulu, Hawaii. The only way to participate was to win a battle in your local region and earn an invite, making it an exclusive event for the best Pokémon trainers in the world – and the cards offered as prizes some of the rarest Pokémon cards in existence.
This particular Tropical Mega Battle promo card, the 1999 Japanese-language copy of Tropical Wind, has sold at auction for as much as $65,100 in PSA Gem Mint 10 condition, with the most recent record-breaking sale taking place in October 2020. PSA estimates its value to be as high as $148,482, making the ultra-rare card a contender for one of the most expensive Pokémon cards ever made.
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Backless Blastoise Commissioned Presentation Galaxy Star Holo
Sold in January, 2021 for $360,000
Wizards of the Coast printed this extremely rare presentation card as a test run sometime during 1998 as it ramped up efforts to launch the English version of its base set in 1999.
Though it has a similar appearance to the base set Blastoise, notice it has squared corners instead of rounded corners.
Moreover, the back of the card is completely blank.
Hobby experts believe that WOTC printed only two of these “backless Blastoise” cards, so the hobby was stunned when this card came up for auction in early 2021.
Given that the market responded with a $360,000 selling price for this card, I can only imagine what it would have sold for had Charizard been on the front.
Rayquaza Gold Star Holo Ex Deoxys
- Release Date: 2005
- Grading: PSA Gem Mint 10
- Pokemon card value at auction: $45,100
An early favorite of Ruby & Sapphire, Rayquaza has seen an uptick in popularity over the last decade. So it makes sense then that its cards would also start to climb up in value over time. In 2005, The Pokemon Company released the Ex Deoxys TCG expansion featuring the Flying / Dragon-type.
As a gimmick to get Pokemon card collectors interested in the set, the Japanese company introduced Gold Star Pokemon cards into the hobby. As mentioned earlier, the incredibly rare Pokemon cards featured a special symbol next to the name of the mon. Of course, the king of these marked collectibles is the Hoenn Legendary itself.
In December 2020, a perfectly graded Gold Star Rayquaza sold at auction for $45,100. Given the Legendarys continued popularity in the franchise, and just how little of the gold Pokemon cards were actually produced, we expect this item to increase in value as time goes on.
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Pokmon Ex Deoxys Gold Star Holo Rayquaza #107 $45100
This Rayquaza is another Gold Star card, similar to the Umbreon we spoke about earlier. With a PSA-certified Gem Mint status, nobody should be surprised by the $45,100 pricepoint.
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Pokemon Ex Team Rocket Returns Holo Gold Star Torchic Psa 10
Generally, base set 1990s-era cards outsell other starter types because they have the perfect blend of nostalgia and rarity. People are willing to pay for a reminder of when they first started collecting cards.
However, this EX Team Rocket Returns Gold Star Torchic card set is the exception to prove a rule. Team Rocket has returned, and only a handful of Gold Star Torchics circulated. Of these, only 17 of 322 rare holos are in mint condition.
Other cards in this set featuring Masakazu Fukuda artwork have sold for reasonable prices, but they cant hold a candle to Torchics fantastic price tag of $50,000.
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Pokmon Neo Genesis 1st Edition Holo Lugia #9
A legendary Pokémon on a legendarily rare Pokémon card
Sold for $144,300 in May 2021
Lugia is one of the most iconic and popular Pokémon in the entire series, having starred on the front of early Game Boy game Pokémon Silver and its Nintendo DS remake SoulSilver. A legendary bird Pokémon from Gen II, Lugia is one of the most powerful and hard-to-find Pokémon that players can catch in the video games – so its only fitting that its Pokémon card is also extremely rare.
The Neo Genesis 1st Edition Holo Lugia #9 Pokémon card is described by auction house PWCC as one of the most difficult Pokémon cards to grade, as the result of a number of errors and misprints that were included in the early runs of the Neo Genesis set for the Pokémon TCG. Later print runs were corrected, but many of the cards from the expansion remain more common in their earlier uncorrected forms.
As of May 2021, PWCC claims that only 41 Gem Mint 10 condition Neo Genesis 1st Edition Holo Lugia #9 cards have ever been graded by PSA, with just three earning the maximum BGS 10 Pristine rating from grading company Beckett Grading Services. The Lugias rarity means that it ranks almost as highly as the legendary first-edition Charizard when it comes to the most valuable Pokémon cards.
Pokmon Japanese Topsun Charizard Scarce Blue Back
There is only one PSA Gem Mint Condition 1995 Pokémon Japanese Topsun Charizard with Scarce Blue Back in existence, and it sold in 2021 for just under half a million dollars. There are 31 of this rare and expensive Pokémon card design in total, but none rival this example for its pristine condition. While Charizard cards are always top-rated, this one is especially unique. Its origins pre-date Pokémon game pieces, and it features no number and a blue back, rather than the traditional Poxémon design. Additionally, it carries the 1995 date, although it wasnt distributed until 1997, adding even more allure to this must-have collectors item.
Grade: PSA 10 Gem Mint
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Japanese Topsun Charizard Blue Back
|Estimated Average Market Value||Unknown|
The most expensive Pokemon card on this list was also more than likely one of the cheapest Pokemon cards to buy in history You cant help but smile at the irony.
In 1997, a Japanese company known as Top-Seika obtained the rights to feature Pokémon on card inserts that would be included with the sale of packets of chewing gum the gum was apple flavored in case youre curious.
Each packet would contain 2 pieces of gum along with two cards from the Topsun promotion. Each packet was sold at only 60 Yen thats approximately $0.60!
The set contained a wide variety of Pokémon from generation 1 alongside Charizard and there were even misprinted versions released.
But what makes this card so special, besides the fact that it features fan-favorite Charizard, is the Blue back.
In what would later become typical of Pokemon cards, intentionally or not, the cards were released in waves similar to how the original base set of Pokémon cards came in editions First Edition, Shadowless and Unlimited.
In the case of the Topsun insert cards, what we might refer to today as a First Edition card, was a Topsun insert card that had a blue back and featured no number on the top left border of the card name.
This record-breaking Charizard is just such a card.
There are a few live listings of this card, but I expect them to sell quickly even with a lower PSA score.
You can hear the full story of this Pokemon card by the video linked below.
Most Expensive Pokemon Cards Of All Time
Initially released in Japan in the 1990s to accompany the Pokémon video games, the Pokémon Trading Card Game has transformed into one of the most popular trading card games of all-time.
Because of the red-hot popularity of the franchise, some of the most expensive Pokemon cards can sell into the six-figure range…
That may sound shocking, at first, but given that Pokémon is a worldwide phenom, there is a vast, passionate collector base around the globe just waiting to get their hands on these prized cards.
From trophy cards, to First Edition Pokemon cards, to lesser-known rarities, the value of these cards is quite impressive.
And in this guide, we take a look at the 50 most valuable of them all.
Let’s jump right in!
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Charmander 1st Edition $300
Charmander’s value has been all over the place in the last 12 months. After the 2020 summer of record sale after record sale, baby Zard’s value has taken a dip recently, but don’t be surprised if Charmander rebounds due to the power Charizard yields on the market.
PSA Pop: 652 – 661
Current Pokemon Card Value: PSA 10 $979 PSA 9 $300
Pokemon First Edition Blastoise
Sold in November, 2020 for $45,100
One of the coolest-looking of all Pokémon with its twin water cannons that retract from the shell on its back, Blastoise received a massive boost in popularity after serving as the cover mascot of the Pokémon Blue video game.
1st Edition Blastoise cards feature a first edition stamp to the lower left of the holographic image and no shadowing effect behind its right and bottom borders.
Out of the 2,070 first edition Blatoise cards submitted to PSA as of this writing, 100 of them have been given the PSA 10 distinction or roughly 4.8% of them.
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Summer Battle Road Mew Victory Orb Trophy
- Release Date: 1999
- Grading: PSA Gem Mint 10
- Pokemon card value at auction: $60,000
The second tournament Trophy Pokemon card on the list, the Mew Victory Orb Trophy was given out during the 1998 Summer Battle Road competition. Spanning nine regions across Japan, only the top three Trainers in each bracket scored the rare Pokemon card.
According to PSA, only 16 of them have been given the coveted Gem Mint 10 score. One of these pristine collectibles popped up at a PWCC auction in December 2020 and ended with 51 bids for a final price of $60,000. It even came with the original plaque handed out at the finals.
As we dive deeper into this list, prepare to see more of these trophy Pokemon cards dominating the top spot. Since they were awarded at tournaments, they are intricately more scarce population-wise, and thus more valuable.
Pokmon World Championships Ken Sugimori Pokmon Cut Auto Dna
Ken Sugimori is an integral part of Pokémon history. He was an art director for the video games, a talented illustrator, and an original Pokémon character designer responsible for fan favorites such as Venusaur, Gengar, Snorlax, and Mewtwo. However, he also had contract restrictions preventing him from giving autographs. Thats why this card is so special. While its not officially a Pokémon, these blank cards were custom-crafted to allow artists to add drawings and autographs at the 2004 Pokémon World Championships. Ken drew Pikachu and signed it in both Kanji and English. Its a unique, one-off piece that wont be repeated, so its place on this list of the most rare and expensive Pokémon cards is very secure!
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Pokmon World Championships No 1 Trainer
Every copy of this rare and valuable promo card is one-of-a-kind
Sold for $31,200 in April 2021
The first of two rare and valuable Pokémon cards called No. 1 Trainer on this list, this particular card was awarded to winners of the regional Battle Road Spring tournaments held in Japan during early 2002.
The regional tournaments were held as qualifiers for the Pokémon World Championships, with the small number of No. 1 Trainer cards produced for the few winners making them some of the rarest Pokémon cards in existence.
Adding to the card’s rarity is the fact that each No. 1 Trainer card was customised with the name of the tournament winner printed onto the card, making each card one-of-a-kind. According to auction house Heritage Auctions, the personalised aspect of the cards also mean that they rarely appear at auction, making them an even rarer sight in the world of Pokémon cards.
The 2002 No. 1 Trainer card was illustrated by Ken Sugimori, best known as being one of the original artists and designers for Pokémon’s first generation of 151 Pokémon. The text on it reads: “The Pokémon Card Game Official Tournament Battle Road Spring 2002 champion is recognised here, and his honour is praised.” Sugimori’s No. 1 Trainer artwork – featuring fan-favourite Pokémon such as Pikachu, Chansey and Marrill – is exclusive to the card, making it especially unique.
Topsun Charizard Blue Back No Number Error
Sold in January, 2021 for $493,230
As with the other Topsun cards mentioned earlier on this list, Top-Seika didn’t distribute them until 1997, even though their copyright date reads 1995.
And since they weren’t part of the official Pokemon Trading Card Game, they are considered more in the realm of novelty collectible cards.
Still, an early Pokemon card is an early Pokemon card…
And, whether you’re talking about the prism holos, green-backs, or blue-backs, collectors are willing to pay thousands of dollars for several of the Topsun cards when graded in PSA 10 condition.
But a price tag of thousands of dollars turned out to be quite an understatement in January 2021 when Goldin Auctions sold the most desirable of them all, the only “no number error” blue-back Charizard on record in a PSA 10 holder, for a whopping $493,230.
The blue-back checklist contains 150 numbered cards in total, but for some reason, about 50 of the characters were also printed with no number on them by mistake.
So, while the standard blue-back Charizard should contain a “006” on it in the upper-left of the front of the card, the “no number error” will be blank.
If you can find one and are lucky enough to have it graded PSA 10, you could be looking at life-changing money.
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Pokemon First Edition Venusaur
Sold in December, 2020 for $22,615
Venusaur, notorious for the large flower that protrudes from its back, is the final evolved form of one of the original starter Pokémon, Bulbasaur.
That flower serves more than just a decorative purpose, though, as Venusaur uses it to absorb energy from the sun’s rays.
Like Charizard and Blastoise, who derive extra notoriety for appearing on video game box art, Venusaur was the mascot of the Pokémon Green video game released for the Nintendo Game Boy in Japan in 1996.
As one of the most recognizable Pokémon, collectors are willing to pay hefty price tags for 1st edition examples of this card in high grade.
The Language Of The Pokemon Card
Most Pokemon cards are printed in either English or Japanese. Japanese Pokemon cards have different set names and numbers to English cards, so theyre often considered separately, and have different valuations applied to them.
However, Pokemon cards are also printed in other languages, such as German, French, and Dutch. These cards will have the same card number as their English varieties, but are often worth slightly less than the English version of the Pokemon card.
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St Edition Shadowless Holographic Machamp
This particular Machamp card is from the original series released and is known as one of the most corrected error cards from the base set.
First editions of Pokemon cards are almost always some of the most valuable cards you can collect, and this is no different with this Machamp.
The Shadowless variant is identifiable by the absence of a shadow around the border of the card.
Examples of this card in mint condition have been sold for over $5,000.
You can see the most up-to-date pricing and live listings for this card by