Why Pokémon Cards Are Soaring

Why Pokémon Cards Are Soaring Anime

Pokémon cards are currently very popular in Japan. Prices have skyrocketed, and mass purchases and investment activities are flourishing, but why has it become such a boom? We will explain the reasons.

High prices

Scarlet Violet,” the first completely new entry in the popular “Pokemon” game series in three years, was released simultaneously worldwide. The TV animation series is also showing great excitement, with the main character Satoshi becoming the first World Champion in the 25th year of its broadcast. In the midst of all this, the “Pokémon Card Game” has been gaining popularity following the game and anime. Prices have skyrocketed, and mass buying and investment activities are flourishing, but why has it become such a boom?

On November 13, 2022, a Tokyo card shop in Akihabara tweeted that it had recently acquired a card autographed by artist Naoki Saito. The card, which cost an astounding 1,598,000 yen, had an address, a date, and a signature, proving that it was an autograph card made specifically for a person.

 A renowned foreign collector spent almost 700 million yen on a very precious and rare “Pokémon Illustrator” card in July of this year; this sum was noted by the Guinness Book of Records as the highest paid for a private transaction.

 Why has the value of Pokémon cards skyrocketed to this level? A business manager at Giraffe Corporation, which operates magi, a flea market application for trading cards and other items, and magipoka, a store specializing in Pokémon cards, explains, “The surge in value to this point is a boom-like phenomenon that has occurred several times repeatedly since the fall of 2020.

There are ‘high-class packs’ containing rare cards that are released once a year, and their popularity started with the 2020 high-class pack ‘Shiny Star V’.

In 2009, several commemorative products were sold for the 25th anniversary of Pokémon cards. The timing coincided with the popularity of Yu-Gi-Oh cards, which had soared until then, calming down, and combined with the Corona virus disaster, the opening videos on YouTube also boomed. It was as if the popularity of the product was concentrated all at once due to a combination of various factors.

Purchasing as an Investment

Trading cards have always been a well-liked investment option, with some rare cards fetching hundreds of thousands to millions of yen. However, it is unusual to witness a rush of people to the lottery before the cards go on sale, or even to see expensive prices being paid for cards that are already in circulation. What in the world is happening?

The situation is somewhat different between rare and valuable used cards and the soaring prices of new cards currently in circulation. The price of cards is also based on the market principle of supply and demand, and old cards has a higher priced mainly because of their rarity. On the contrary, the demand for new cards in circulation is extremely high in relation to the number of cards produced and supplied, and their value is increasing because there are so many buyers. It’s a situation similar to when the Nintendo DS was first released.

However, price increases aren’t just being caused by people who exclusively use cards. Pokémon cards have been getting more expensive than usual, and newcomers to the market have been expanding the number of investments they make in Pokémon cards. In these investments, they hold Pokémon cards as assets like stocks or virtual currency and buy and sell them in response to price changes.

Because there are so few outlets that carry them and so few cards in good condition, newcomers who want to invest in Pokémon cards are unaware of the worth of old cards and find it especially difficult to find clean cards. The discussed card, “Equvalier,” is a top rare card that showcases one of the most well-liked characters from recent promo cards. It is a representation of the Pokémon card boom and is highly sought after by all players!

 While this is different from resale, some criticize that adults buying in large quantities may not get the cards into the hands of children who really want them, but this is not entirely true, he says.

Most of the cards purchased in large quantities after the boxes have been opened are ordinary cards with little demand for collection. Such cards can be found in card stores for a small fraction of the price, and can be obtained at very low prices. The situation is such that cards that children use in competitive games can be obtained at a lower price than buying new ones, in a sort of way.