Pokemon

How to make money selling Pokemon trading cards

Published: 17/Nov/2020 0:53 Updated: 17/Nov/2020 2:45

by Brent Koepp

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With the Pokemon TCG exploding in value in 2020, new collectors may be wondering how to make money off their cards. Here is everything you need to know.

Pokemon Trading Cards have never been hotter than they are right now. The hobby’s popularity has reached an all-time high in 2020, after celebrities like Logan Paul put a spotlight on it.

Items once traded away on playgrounds for nothing can now sell for as much as a house. We will go over some of the steps new collectors should be taking to try to make money off of this exploding market.

Promotional 1999 Pokemon Trading Card Game wallpaper.
PokeGuardian / The Pokemon Company
Pokemon cards released in 1999 can now be sold for money.

How to make money selling Pokemon cards

Before we start, we must get a couple things out of the way. First off, the real money-makers right now are from the 1999 original Base Set. If you don’t already have these cards tucked away from your childhood, getting your hands on these collectibles is next to impossible.

To put things into perspective, a booster box from that set can go for $34k (Unlimited) all the way up to $375k (1st Edition). The truth is, these items are not only in extremely short supply, but investors worth millions have been snatching them up.

This guide will cover selling cards for new collectors, as well as those that may already have cards but aren’t sure what they are worth. It’s important to keep expectations in check, and to understand that it takes a lot of work and research.

Collectors that already have cards

Screenshot of a Pokemon collector's trading card game collection.
YouTube: Leonhart
You need to figure out which cards you own are worth value before getting them graded.

If you already own cards, you need to first figure out which items actually have any value. Once you sort out the ones that have potential, you need to send them off for grading. To put it bluntly, items have lower value until they have been looked over by a professional company.

  • Step 1: Look at your cards, and put aside any holographics or rare items. Go to an auction site like eBay and enter the name of the card, as well as the number listed on the bottom right. For example “Charizard 107/105”
  • Step 2: Once you see your exact card, tick off the “Sold Items” box. Now look through all the auctions of your card that have been sold in the last month to get a general idea of what the collectible is actually going for.
  • Step 3: Now that you know which cards you own that have a high-selling potential, you need to send your cards off to either PSA or Beckett BGS grading companies to get them looked over.
  • Step 4: Due to Pokemon’s popularity, wait times may be longer than usual. But once you get your cards sent back, you will have a more definitive idea what your card is worth. For instance if your card comes back as a PSA 9, repeat Step 2 and look for other PSA 9s that have sold recently.
  • Step 5: Now you can either sit on your graded cards and wait as the prices continue to go up. Or you can sell the item on sites like eBay, trollandtoad, or even put them up at Heritage Auctions or Iconic.

New collectors

Screenshot of buying Pokemon trading cards on Ebay.
Ebay: shizmanski
You can find Pokemon cards on eBay that are cheap now, but can be worth a lot later on.

If you are a new collector, it’s going to be difficult getting your hands on the extremely rare items, though it’s still not too late. Early sets like Fossil, Team Rocket, and Gym Heroes can still be bought up. Most of the focus is still on the 1999 Base release.

  • Step 1: Use a resource like TCG analyst ZandGEmporium who tracks sales of vintage sets. Look for the cards that are currently selling high, or that show a consistent increase in value month after month.
  • Step 2:  If you plan on sitting on your cards as a long term investment, go to sites like eBay and look for ones graded by PSA or Beckett. You can either try to bid for these items and hope to pay for them at a lower value, or just bite the bullet and Buy It now – which is fine if you are sitting on them as appreciating assets.
  • Step 3: If you are looking to sell quick, you can get your hands on these same rare cards for much cheaper if they are ungraded. But be aware, you are taking a gamble as you can’t fully verify the condition of the card. Make sure to look closely at the pictures of the item, and look the seller’s rating. You will also need to then send them in for grading at PSA or Beckett once they are sent to you.
  • Step 4: Once you get your items back graded, either sit on the collectible or turn around and sell it on sites like eBay or auction houses – whichever route you prefer.

The best TCG sets to invest in

Promotional wallpaper for Pokemon Trading Card Game Set Hidden Fates.
PokeGuardian / The Pokemon Company
It’s not just retro Pokemon cards worth money. New sets like 2019’s Hidden Fates are worth investing in.

While this is subjective to some degree, we will go over what we feel are the best sets to buy cards from. This will also include modern releases, which may not have exploded in value yet, but are on the rise:

  • 1999 Base Set Unlimited Print
  • 1999 Fossil
  • 2000 Team Rocket
  • 2000 Gym Heroes
  • 2000 Gym Challenge
  • 2000 Neo Genesis
  • 2000 Neo Discovery
  • 2000 Neo Revelation
  • 2000 Neo Destiny
  • 2016 Evolutions
  • 2017 Burning Shadows
  • 2019 Hidden Fates

Due to the 1st Edition Base Set’s low population and astronomical prices, most collectors will move on to the next best thing – the Unlimited run. This is the version that most kids had growing up, and will probably have in their garage or attic.

Those looking to invest can look towards the 2016 Evolutions expansion. For its 20th anniversary, the Pokemon Company did a re-print run of many of the most popular Base Set cards, including Charizard. These items can still be bought fairly low, and prices are at the beginning of booming.

In terms of modern sets, Hidden Fates has been extremely hot since it released in 2019. The insanely rare Shiny Charizard is a great investment, and the collection features many popular Pokemon with their rare Shiny colors.

Overwatch

Overwatch player discovers secret counter to Mei’s Cryo-Freeze

Published: 1/Dec/2020 19:32

by Michael Gwilliam

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Mei’s Cryo-Freeze has to be one of the most annoying abilities in Overwatch, granting the hero complete invincibility for its duration. Now, a player has discovered a brilliant trick to counter the ice-themed hero.

In Overwatch, there are few abilities as unique as Cryo-Freeze. It places Mei inside of an ice cube that heals her and cleanses any status effects such as Ana’s biotic grenade.

However, the most annoying thing about the ability is how it makes Mei completely invulnerable. For the few seconds she has it activated, she can survive anything from point-blank D.Va bombs to Sigma’s Gravitic Flux.

Some players have found ways to “time” abilities so they connect with Mei as she exits her ice cube cocoon, such as Tracer’s Pulse Bomb or a Reinhardt charge. However, this tactic is reliant on the Mei using Cryo-Freeze’s whole duration. If she cancels it early, then there’s a chance that she’ll end up surviving or dodging the oncoming attack.

Mei uses ice block in Overwatch
Blizzard Entertainment
Mei’s ice block is extremely powerful.

Luckily, a new technique has been discovered which should make countering Mei a breeze. As shown by Reddit user bleubey, Junkrat can actually place his trap directly on top of Mei’s ice cube.

This trick should guarantee that the Chinese environmentalist hero gets trapped and is extremely vulnerable to any attacks. With any luck, you can even catch the Mei player completely off-guard and force out her ultimate.

That exact thing happened in bleubey’s clip. After coming out of the cube, the Mei found herself trapped and ended up wasting her Blizzard in the process, only to be taken out of the picture by a damage-boosted Junkrat grenade.

I find it amusing that you can put a junk trap on top of Mei’s head while she’s an ice cube from Overwatch

Users on the site were shocked to see that such a trick even existed. “I’m almost gold border and I never knew this,” wrote marioaprooves.

“I’m GM and I never knew this sh*t. Holy f**k,” stated another, clearly shocked at what they had witnessed.

Mei freezes Roadhog
Blizzard Entertainment
Mei has a lot of tricks up her sleeve.

Bleubey responded in turn that they only found out by complete accident, proving that such a tactic really went under the radar for a long time.

The next time there is a Mei giving your team trouble, try swapping to Junkrat and taking her out with this neat trap hat maneuver.