For 20 years, the world of Pokémon has captivated fans with exciting adventures and colorful creatures. And now the action's coming into the real world thanks to Pokémon GO, the franchise's first foray into augmented-reality mobile gaming.
The new game might put bring your favorite Pokémon into everyday life, and while the new tech is seriously impressive, nothing beats sitting down with some friends and doing battle with a deck of Pokémon cards. The collectible trading card game was a near instant hit upon its late '90s release, sending waves of kids (and their frazzled parents) to collect 'em all.
A pack of cards only cost a few bucks back in the day, and while you'd inevitably end up with duplicate cards in your collection, every once in a while you'd stumble across a true gem. To celebrate the release of Pokémon GO, we're going back to the '90s to look at the real value of some fan favorite Pokémon cards.
Note: We've based our current selling prices on listings from eBay. You might find these cards listed for different values elsewhere. And as always, price will vary depending on the condition of your card.
First Edition Holographic Charizard
Current Selling Price: $1,995
Charizard is easily one of the coolest dragon Pokémon, and if you had a Charizard card you were instantly one of the coolest kids in town. Even better if you could get a sweet holographic Charizard. If you managed to snag a first edition copy of the card you're in luck, because it could be worth around $2,000 today. And like all collectibles, it'll be worth even more if it's in good condition.
First Edition Holographic Blastoise
Current Selling Price: $2,499.99
The antithesis of Charizard's fiery style, Blastoise has remained a fan favorite water Pokémon since the franchise's beginnings. And if you have a first edition holographic Blastoise card in mint condition, you could earn some serious cash. In this case, water beats fire.
First Edition Bulbasaur
Current Selling Price: $40
Bulbasaur was always one of my favorite Pokémon, mostly because he sort of looks like a little grassy dog which is absolutely adorable. Naturally, I won't be selling my Bulbasaur card any time soon, which is fine by me — it's not worth as much as some of the more rare cards anyway.
First Edition Pikachu
Current Selling Price: $299.99
As one of the franchise's flagship characters, Pikachu was a must-have card in your deck. While he wasn't a particularly important monster in the original video games, he became massively popular as hero Ash Ketchum's main Pokémon in the animated series. The first edition Pikachu design is a bit chubbier than today's slimmed down critter, but he's still the cute character we know and love. Even better, the card is worth a bunch of money.
Pikachu Illustrator Card
Current Selling Price: $100,000
It's highly unlikely that you have one of these cards, but if you do you've stumbled across the Holy Grail of Pokémon cards. The Illustrator card was produced as a promotional item in 1997 for a card drawing contest. Artists were able to submit their own drawings to be featured on Pokémon cards, and the winners received an illustrator card as part of their prize. Only 6 of these were ever produced, making them the rarest cards in Pokémon history.
Current Selling Price: $19.99
Psyduck was a consistent source of comic relief in the Pokémon animated shows, and it seems fitting that the standard card for the constantly belittled Pokémon is worth next to nothing. But it's not all bad, because the special Misty's Psyduck card from the Gym Heroes set is worth a bit more.
First Edition Onix
Current Selling Price: $5
Onix was another creature popularized by the Pokémon shows, having been one of Brock's first Pokémon. Sadly, the Onix card is so common that it's basically worthless. You could get $5 for a first edition card in perfect condition, but even that's being a bit generous.
First Edition Holographic Mewtwo
Current Selling Price: $99.99
As the most powerful creature in Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue, plenty of fans were eager to get their hands on a Mewtwo trading card. If you snagged a first edition copy of the psychic Pokémon's card you could sell it for around $100 today.
It's pretty cool that some old school Pokémon cards are worth a ton of money today, but we aren't all that bummed that a majority of them are worthless. From trading cards to video games, animated shows and beyond, the franchise has provided plenty of fond memories for fans around the world. And in the end, those memories are more valuable than even the rarest card.
Did you ever play the Pokémon trading card game? What are some of your favorite cards? Let us know in the comments.