An Introduction to the Pokémon Trading Card Game


Created in 1995, the concept of Pokémon was considered to be ground breaking. Pokémon, essentially wild animals, inhabited a fantasy world where human Pokémon Trainers caught these creatures and made them stronger by placing them into battles with other Pokémon.

Spawning a long running TV show as well as a plethora of video games, Pokémon cards were the first piece of the franchise that children really became enthralled with collecting. These cards have evolved with time and are still available for purchase today. If you fancy reliving your childhood memories, keep reading to learn more.

Gotta Catch ’Em All

The idea behind the card game is to collect each and every different type of Pokémon until you have them all. On its original release, there were a grand total of 151 different species of Pokémon, but on the latest count there are over 800.

If you’re just getting started then this could be a difficult goal to achieve but people often sell individual cards if you’re looking for a specific one. We should also warn you that the rarer cards can be very expensive. Back in 1998 we can remember a shiny Charizard costing the equivalent of $50 AUD.

How to Play

Most people only ever bothered to collect each card because at their release, no official instructions were provided. That said, actually playing the Pokémon Trading Card Game can be rewarding. The overall process is as follows:

  • Each player compiles a 60 card deck.
  • Each player will then draw 7 individual cards which will form the basis of their hand. Cards should be placed face down on the table.
  • The only cards that can be active initially are the base evolutionary forms of a Pokémon. If in doubt, this is detailed on the top left hand portion of each card. Active cards are placed at the front of the battlefield.
  • All other evolution forms need to remain on the bench.
  • At this point, each player will draw a further 6 cards to be used as prizes which are placed next to any active cards.
  • A coin is then flipped to decide which player goes first.
  • All active cards and cards remaining on the bench should be flipped over so their details are visible.
  • The winner of the coin toss should draw another card from their deck and if a basic Pokémon, it should be placed on the battlefield in the active position.
  • In order for a Pokémon to be able to attack, each player will need to attach a corresponding amount of energy cards to each Pokémon. Each listed attack will require a specific amount of energy cards.
  • Players take it in turns until an entire deck of cards has been defeated.

Depending on the luck of the draw, the game could go on for hours. Make sure you put plenty of time aside to complete each game as it is difficult to continue where you left off. Pokémon cards are widely available in any games store across Australia and can also be purchased online from several outlets.

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