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How Do You Know If A Pokemon Card Is Rare

Pokemon Portuguese First Edition Charizard

How to Tell if Your Pokémon Cards Are Rare or Expensive!

Sold in April, 2021 for $44,850

Only two Portuguese first edition Charizards have ever been graded PSA 10 out of the 34 submitted to PSA as of this writing.

Just two…

Given how the market for Pokemon cards has soared recently and the scarcity of this card in PSA 10 condition, I’m surprised this didn’t sell for an even higher price.


Still, $44,850 is impressive and speaks to the strength of the Pokemon brand and the Charizard character, in particular.

Price Your Pokemon Cards

Now that youve organized your cards and created a list, pricing them will be much easier. If youre using a spreadsheet, you can keep track of the total value of your collection.

Many of the websites in the Where to Sell Pokemon Cards section above can help with pricing. If you want to sell directly to a site, look up each set or card and find the listed price. If youre selling locally or on a site where you choose your price, use eBay to look up recent sales. Youll get an idea of what different cards sell for.

If your cards are used or damaged, people may still buy them but youll get a lower price. Check out the FAQ in the next section for more details on determining a cards value.

How Do You Know If You Have A Rare Pokemon Card

Look in the bottom right corner of the card to find the rarity symbol, next to the card number:


  • A circle means the card is common, while a diamond marks uncommon cards.
  • A star means the card is rare, while a star H or three stars are special, extra-rare cards.
  • . Moreover, what is the rarest Pokemon card in the world?

    Pikachu Illustrator” is considered the rarest Pokémon trading card in existence, and only 39 were produced back in 1998. The card features artwork by Pikachu’s creator Atsuko Nishida, and was only given away to the winners of an illustration contest.

    One may also ask, what is the rarest Pokemon in Pokemon go?

    • Gen 1: Rattata, Pidgey, Weedle, Caterpie, Zubat.
    • Gen 2: Sentret, Swinub, Hoothoot, Ledyba.

    Also Know, are Pokemon promo cards rare?

    One of the most valuable Pokémon promo cards ever produced was the Pikachu Illustrator promo card. This promo is the rarest with only 39 copies ever printed. This highly sought after promo card was awarded to the winners of the Pokémon Card Game Illustration Contest held in Japan in 1997.


    How much is a Pikachu card worth?

    For example, if you’re the proud owner of a Pikachu Illustrator Card well that one is currently worth a cool $100,000 USD. On the other hand, however, cards such as the First Edition Shadowless Lightning Energy will only go for $1 USD right now.

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    Organize Your Pokemon Cards

    To sell cards individually, start by separating them into sets, such as Jungle or Gym Heroes. If you have any complete sets, you can sell them for a higher price, but its okay if you dont.

    To determine a cards set, look for the symbol, usually in the lower right-hand corner. There are a ton of different symbols, but there are several websites that will tell you what they mean. For now, sort the cards into sets with matching symbols.


    If youre selling a collection, consider organizing the cards based on type: Pokemon, trainer, energy, or miscellaneous.

    Which Pokmon Cards Are Worth Money

    How to Tell if a Pokémon Card Is Rare and How to Sell It

    Not all Pokemon cards have a high value. It truly depends on the printed year, condition, and rarity to determine the resale value, but some super special cards range from $10,000 to over $500,000.

    To give you a clear idea, here is the list of most valuable cards in a Pokémon deck:

    • Pikachu Illustrator: Its one of the oldest cards that came out in 1998. The card is worth $250,000 rated in July 2020 by professional sports.
    • Shadowless Holo Charizard: The card creature was introduced in the game in 1999, and the card is worth $507,000 on eBay sites.
    • Master Key Prize Card: The card was introduced in the game in the 2010 championship in Japan. Its scarce, which makes it worth about $22,000.
    • Pre-release Raichu: The card was not meant for public distribution, therefore its value has been priced at $10,000.
    • Tropical Wind Tropical Mega Battle: It was introduced in Tropical Mega Battle in 1999, today its worth $70,000.
    • Espeon Gold Star: It was introduced in 2007, and now it is worth $22,100 on the eBay site.
    • Blastoise: It was introduced in the Combat Turtle in 1999, and it goes for $20,000 on PSA.
    • Shinning Gyarados: It was introduced in 2001 in Neo Revelations, and it is selling for $12,000 on the eBay site.

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    Pokemon World Championships Number 2 Trainer

    Sold in February, 2021 for $110,000


    From Friday, August 18 to Sunday, August 20, 2006, the best of the best battled at the World Championships held at the Hilton Anaheim hotel in Anaheim, California.

    Contestants across three divisions competed feverishly to be one of the top 32 players from each division to advance to the finals on Sunday to crown a champion.

    Those who finished in second place received this number 2 trainer card which features a fantastic image of Pikachu holding a silver cup trophy.

    The official 2006 Pokemon World Championships logo rests in the bottom-right corner, adding a nice touch to an already impressive-looking card.

    First Edition Holographic Alakazam

    Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $2,800


    With its psychic powers that stem from its extremely powerful brain, Alakazam can bring massive headaches to those unfortunate enough to be nearby.

    The evolution from Abra to Kadabra to its final form of Alakazam is one of the more fun name transitions of the series while this card itself is one of the more fun to own.

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    Is It Worth Grading Japanese Pokmon Cards

    Japanese Pokemon cards can be worth more money than their English counterparts. This is because Pokemon trading cards from Japan are of higher quality and still come with first edition markings. In addition, since Japanese Pokemon cards were launched earlier, some were full of controversy, making them even more valuable and sought after by collectors.

    Pokemon Japanese Hr Contest Winner Full Art Charizard

    How to find out if your Pokemon card is rare!

    Sold in June, 2021 for $20,100


    Despite the global health situation in 2020, Pokemon tournaments still took place at home and in shops throughout Japan.

    From July to September 2020, contestants in the Charizard VMAX HR competition could participate in 16-player tournaments for a chance at winning two unique Charizard cards.

    Winners of the first rounds consisting of four players each won the Full Art Charizard V shown here.

    Those four players would then advance to the championship round for a shot at winning the Full Art Charizard VMAX HR competition card as the top prize.

    The extreme difficulty of receiving the BGS 10 Pristine grade gives this card a significant boost in value.


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    How To Tell If A Pokemon Card Is Shadowless

    Shadowless Pokemon cards can be identified through several key features:

    1. The most obvious way is to look to the right of the Pokemons artwork. If there is no shadow next to the yellow border, then the card is shadowless. If there is a shadow, then the card is from the unlimited print run.

    2. Another way to tell if a Pokemon card is shadowless is to look at the HP on the top right corner of the card. Shadowless Pokemon cards have a thinner red print compared to the unlimited versions.

    3. Lastly, a more subtle way to tell if a Pokemon card is shadowless is to look at the copyright dates on the very bottom of the card. Shadowless Pokemon cards have the dates 1995, 96, 98, 99 written, whereas unlimited cards only have 1995, 96, 98.


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    Japanese Promo Master’s Scroll Daisuki Club 8600 Points

    Sold in March 2021, for $35,200

    This holographic Master’s Scroll card is one of several item cards that were part of the L-P Promotional cards released between September 2009 and August 2010.

    Once a player accumulated 8,600 action points, he or she would earn the Master Rank distinction and a prize in the form of this Master’s Scroll card.

    Given the difficulty of acquiring such a massive amount of action points, not many members ever received one of these cards, making it one of the rarest promotional Pokemon cards in the hobby.

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    Ex/gx/v Half Art / Half Body

    These are the cards that everyone wants to be pulling from a booster pack. Theyre usually some of the biggest creatures in the game and some of the hardest cards to find.

    These cards can also be classed as Ultra Rare. In truth, they have a lot of different names and come with a unique mechanic thats special to the current rotation.

    Lugia 1st Edition Neo Genesis

    How to tell if a Pokemon card is rare
    • Release Date: 2000
    • Grading: BGS Pristine 10
    • Pokemon card value at auction: $144,300

    Similar to Mewtwo, Lugia was an iconic Legendary for many children who grew up with the series in the 00s. So it should come as no surprise that its debut as a Pokemon card was a major hit.

    While a 1st Edition Lugia broke records by selling for a mind-blowing $129,000 in 2020, a Beckett graded 10 version of the item sold for $144,300 at a PWCC auction in May 2021. BGS grades a lot harder than PSA, making this pristine Pokemon card one of only three in the entire world.

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    Card Condition Is Important

    The condition of your Pokémon cards is a vital part of whether they have any value. Collectors arent interested in ripped, stained, or otherwise defaced cards, and such wear can severely tank a cards value even if it is a rare one.

    Youve probably heard of mint condition cards before. If youre wondering whether or not a card qualifies as mint, youll need to get it graded by a PSA representative. Your card could be worth more if you have its condition officially graded. However, it costs money to get your card graded by a professional, so you should only do so if you are sure that your card is worth at least the money it will take to be professionally graded.

    Pokemon Japanese Champion’s League

    Sold in April, 2021 for $30,000

    Beginning in 2000, Champion’s League and Battle Roads tournaments offered contestants throughout Japan the opportunity to battle it out amongst the best of the best.

    In 2000 and 2001, there were two Champion’s League tournaments, one in the Spring and another in the Summer.

    From 2002 to 2006, however, there was a reduction to just one Champion’s League tournament per year.

    And before the 2005 tournament held in Tokyo, no trainers received any kind of promotional card.

    However, the top four ranking players in each age division of the 2005 tournament received this promotional stadium card, making it the first Champion’s League promo stadium card.

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    First Edition Holographic Blastoise

    Estimated PSA 10 Gem Mint Value: $5,500

    A water-type Pokémon, Blastoise first appears in the Pokémon Red and Blue video games as the final evolutionary stage of Squirtle, one of the original three starter Pokémon.

    Relying on twin water cannons that retract from the shell on its back, Blastoise is capable of delivering powerful blasts of water with superior accuracy.

    And just as we saw Charizard’s boost in popularity stemming from its appearance on the cover art of the Pokémon Red video game, Blastoise was the center of attention on the Pokémon Blue video game:

    Rightfully considered one of the coolest-looking of all Pokémon, Blastoise remains a collector favorite and this card can bring thousands of dollars in high grade.

    What Are The 10 Most Valuable Pokemon Cards

    How To Know If Your Pokemon Cards Are Rare

    Here’s the list of the 10 highest-selling Pokémon cards.

    • Neo Genesis First Edition Holo Lugia. …
    • 7. Japanese Promo Card Family Event Trophy Holo Kangaskhan. …
    • Backless Blastoise Commissioned Presentation Galaxy Star Holo. …
    • First Edition Charizard Holo. …
    • 1998 Japanese Promo Card Holo Illustrator Pikachu.

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    How Much Are Misprint Error Pokemon Cards Worth

    When it comes to valuing Pokemon cards, rarity plays a big role.

    If youre lucky enough to own a misprint card, most of the time, it will be worth more than the correctly printed card.

    Collectors flock to own low population cards, and if there is a genuine print error, this can mean there are very few in existence, therefore inflating the value.

    Misprint cards come in many forms. For example:

    • Symbols missing or the wrong way
    • Incorrect spellings

    Tropical Mega Battle Tropical Wind Promo

    • Release Date: 1999
    • Grading: PSA Gem Mint 10
    • Pokemon card value at auction: $65,100

    While not the most flashy Pokemon card on the list, the Tropical Mega Battle promo is an absolute holy grail for Psyduck fans. It doesnt get more adorable than seeing the Water-type mon playing the ukulele while chilling in a hammock with Jigglypuff.

    Long before The Pokemon Company solidified the TCG competitive scene into the World Championships in 2004, one of Japans earlier iterations of the contest was known as the Tropical Mega Battle. In 1999, the tournament was held in Honolulu, Hawaii.

    Only 50 players from various countries around the world were invited to compete against one another. Because various Trophy Pokemon cards were given out at the event, the Tropical Wind iteration is incredibly unique. The collectible resurfaced in a PWCC auction in October 2020 and sold for a mouth-watering $65,100.

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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.

    Top Tips In This Article

    How to Tell if a Pokémon Card Is Rare and How to Sell It

    Scott Pratte, our expert card trader and collector, provided lots of tips to make money selling Pokemon cards. Here is his best advice:

    • First edition or New Edition? All kidding aside, we know that you know New Edition is a boy band from the 70s and 80s. Still, you need to know what you have in that box of Pokemon cards. In other words, which are the rare cards and which are not. Do you have one of the original holographic cards? Cha-ching.
    • Whats the condition of your cards? If theyve been under the bed in a box so light didnt fade them or the dog didnt get to them, you may be in good shape. Never taken out of the wrapper? More cha-ching. That is whats called mint. All cards in good condition are likely worth more than what you paid for them.
    • The best place to sell Pokemon cards? Its eBay all the way. It would be great to sell one card for oodles of money and eBay has facilitated some of that. But if you want a big audience and buyers willing to shell out $30 a pop for your cards, you can rack up sales.
    • Think youve got something valuable? Consult the Professional Sports Authenticator and get an estimate. This will put you in a good position to haggle with a buyer, which you should expect to do.

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    Bulbasaur 1st Edition $450

    One of the most popular Pokemon, Bulbasaur delivers long term. Previously third in the pecking order for PSA 9’s, Bulbasaur is currently higher than Squirtle and Charmander. With low populations, be sure to make Bulbasaur a top priority.

    PSA Pop: 783 – 237 – 416

    Current Value: PSA 10 $3200 PSA 9 $450

    Are All 1st Edition Cards Shadowless

    If we swap the question round, then yes,all 1st Edition cards are shadowless! If you own, or can get your hands on these, you hold some of the most valuable cards in the game.

    Quick caveat the only exception to the rule is the 1st Edition Base Set Machamp. This card was always printed with the 1st Edition stamp, whether it was shadowless or not. The shadowless version

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    Black Star Ishihara Signed Gx Promo Card

    A card featuring the Pokémon Company’s President himself.

    Sold for $247,230 in April 2021

    The most recent card to make headlines for pure value, this card sold for nearly a quarter of a million dollars at auction on April 26th 2021. You can find the full details at our story here, but this card depicts Pokémon Company founder and current president Tsunekazu Ishihara, and was given to the company staff as a celebration of the man’s 60th birthday in 2017.

    That makes the card rare, but this specific version is even rarer, as Ishihara actually signed this near-mint card to boost its price even further. The “2017 P.M. SM Black Star #TPCi01 Tsunekazu Ishihara Signed Pokémon GX Promo Card”, to use its full title, is a testament to the raw power apparently held by the Pokémon president. The ability “Red Chanchanko” is in reference to the red vest traditionally worn on 60th birthdays in Japan, and prevents the effect of any attack, ability or trainer card against Ishihara. Meanwhile, its GX move “60 Congratulations”, tells you to flip 60 coins, and take a present for each one. A truly legendary card.

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