Pokemon promises to fix “disappointing” TCG availability after McDonald’s scalpers

Screenshot of Pokemon 25th Anniversary McDonalds Happy Meals.Twitter: @LumberJackFrost

The Pokemon Company addressed fans on February 10, and vowed to fix the TCG’s stock issue after the 25th anniversary McDonald’s  cards sold out within hours at many locations due to scalpers.

If you told parents in the 90s that Pokemon cards could one day pay for their child’s college, a sports car, or a house, no one would have believed you. But here we are in 2021 where the retro collectibles have sold for as high as $450k at auction.

The TCG, which launched in 1998, has exploded in popularity over the last 12 months. The insane demand from collectors and scalpers, however, has left fans in the dust. Now, The Pokemon Company has announced it is finally tackling the issue.

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Screenshot of Pokemon 25th Anniversary McDonalds booster packs.Ebay: suhkh51
The limited time Pokemon cards are selling out at McDonalds and being listed on eBay.

The Pokemon Company reveals plans to fix scalping chaos

Within hours of the McDonalds Pokemon 25th anniversary promotion going live, scalpers descended on the fast food chain to buy up the limited edition cards. Some even bought as many as 100 Happy Meals. This was met with backlash from fans who felt adults were being “greedy”.

Players of the Trading Card Game have been suffering for months as the demand around the hobby has been nothing short of chaos. New expansions have been selling out in seconds, only to be re-sold minutes later on sites like eBay for a 500% markup. Forget about older sets, those have long been hoarded.

The skyrocketing demand and explosion in value of the Nintendo collectibles, has left children and adult fans pushed to the outside. The Pokemon Company addressed the issue on February 10, promising to fix the situation: “We’re aware that some fans are experiencing difficulties purchasing certain Pokémon TCG products due to very high demand. In response, we are reprinting impacted products at maximum capacity to ensure more fans can enjoy the Pokémon TCG.”

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In a blog post on their site, The Pokemon Company further explained that stock issues were due to both “high demand” and “shipping constraints” globally. For future new sets, the Japanese creators also vowed to maximize production so that more items will be available at launch.

Perhaps the most exciting thing mentioned in the announcement was “reprints” because at the end of the day, it’s the limited quantity which drives scalpers and collectors to hoard TCG products. If they bring back unlimited print runs, this will severely drop prices, which means more fans can get their hands on the cards.

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