Pokemon

How to make money selling Pokemon trading cards

Published: 17/Nov/2020 0:53 Updated: 16/Jan/2021 0:14

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.

Call of Duty

3 tips to help you survive Black Ops Cold War’s new Zombies Cranked mode

Published: 15/Jan/2021 23:40

by Tanner Pierce

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With the release of Black Ops Cold War’s mid-season update, Treyarch has added Cranked into the game’s Zombies mode – and it’s pretty different from the standard version, requiring some completely separate strategies. 

While Cranked in Call of Duty games is nothing new, having debuted all the way back in 2013’s Ghosts, what is different is a Zombies version of the mode, which was just added to Black Ops Cold War during the game’s midseason update.

The concept is simple: You’re given a timer, and when that timer reaches 0, you explode and die. With each kill, however, your timer resets, giving you more time to keep on grinding. It’s an incredibly fast-paced mode in normal multiplayer, and the Zombies version is even more hectic – but there are some tips you can utilize to help you survive longer.

Pace out your kills

Activision
Pacing out your kills in Cranked is important due to the fact that you only need one kill to reset your timer.

In standard Cranked, players are usually scrambling to get kills. In a 5v5 or 6v6, it makes sense, considering there’s only a limited amount of potential targets, and if you can’t find anyone, you’ll die easily due to the timer running out.

With BOCW Zombies Cranked, the opposite is true. There’s always an abundance of enemies and, while it’s not impossible to run out of targets, generally speaking, they’ll keep on spawning (there’s not even a break in-between rounds).

Because of this, there’s no need to be mowing down Zombies as one does in the normal mode. Instead, if you’re feeling overwhelmed (or if you want to get something done like Pack-A-Punching your weapon), try running away from the enemies for a while to get your bearings.

Remember, all it takes is one kill to reset your timer. If you find it running out, just look behind you at the horde you’ve surely amounted, kill one Zombie, and then move along with your business. Wasting your time mowing down each and every zombie can cost you your game.

With all that being said, don’t think you can run away from the Zombies with no problem; if you get too far away, you’ll find yourself struggling for kills, so it’s best if you stay nearby.

Use fast-reloading weapons and attachments

Activision
You’ll want to use weapons that can be reloaded quickly in Cranked.

In normal Zombies, using a LMG is sort of required during late-game conflicts, as it allows you to mow down Zombies with greater power. In Cranked, speed is king, so it might be better to use something smaller like an SMG.

Reloading fast is essential in Cranked, as you can easily become overrun. Even though it does have a lot of power, you don’t want to waste your time on the horrendously slow reload time found on LMGs. If you want an even faster reload time, you could even throw a fast-mag onto your SMG, and get it done even quicker.

In addition, SMGs have the added benefit of allowing you to run faster, meaning you’ll be able to evade Zombies even better than you would before.

Always go for the Timer Freeze power up

Activision
Remembering these tips can be the difference between surviving or dying early on.

Treyarch has implemented a brand new power-up that’s exclusive to the Cranked game mode: Timer Freeze. With this, players will be able to stop their countdown timer for around 15 seconds or so, giving them a breather.

While this might seem obvious to point out, you’ll want to go for those as much as possible. Getting one at the start of your game is not too important, but it’s especially critical when you get into the late game.

As the mode goes on, your timer will get shorter and shorter, meaning every break you get becomes more and more important. Having that 15 second breather seems like an eternity once you get it, so missing out on one can hurt you a lot – sometimes costing you your life.

While Cranked is incredibly fast-paced, it’s really not that bad if you know what you’re doing. If you remember these tips, you shouldn’t have as much of a problem.