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Pokemon TCG: Is it for You?

Many of us as children were introduced to the world of Trading Card Games or TCGs by a little electric rodent by the name of Pikachu. In the mid to late 90’s Pokemon, the popular Japanese anime and card game crossed the Pacific Ocean and landed in America, and has remained part of the culture ever since. Pokemon was a great game back in the day but how does it compare to the current TCG’s on the market? Before you get started with this game ask these questions, Is Pokemon easy to play? Does it have a re-sale value? How popular is the game today, and what kind of support does the game have as far as local events and prize support? And what level of play you’re looking for in a TCG general, local or pro?
Pokemon is the TCG that really started the market, as far as for your basic and average players. One great thing that motivates this game is the fact that it has an anime base. This helps to promote the game without advertising, and children love to use their favorite cards in accordance with the characters on the show. So this will add to overall draw of the game in general.

Is it easy to play? – Yes very simple indeed. Pokemon was designed as a children’s game, and therefore it’s extremely simple to learn and play. Many children and their parents play this game together, so it’s great that the game is easy to pick up in only about five minuets or so.

Does it have re-sale value? It can I suppose, but Pokemon is past its prime in terms of monetary value. At its peak everyone wanted a Charizard, and you could get one for about 50-70 bucks, sometimes even more, but now we see the prices of individual cards drop. Although this is great for the player, just not the collector.

Is it popular? Not like it was in the mid to late 90’s. Pokemon has lost some of its luster as far as the older crowds go, it’s mainly seen as a children’s game, because that’s what it really is. Parents will have fun playing with their children and the game teaches strategy and deep thought process (again for children). So among the teen to adult crowd you may see a few players, but the popularity lies with the true Pokemon fans, children.

What kind of support does the game feature? That is a bit unclear at the moment. Right now Pokemon is a recreational game so the tournament scene is dead for the most part. When the game was licensed to Wizards of the Coast the prize support and so on rivaled bigger games like Magic but that is no longer the case since Wizards lost the license for the game.

What level of play is the game? Purely recreational, and on the occasion you can find local events. There are larger pro circuit events available but they are very sparse. Again, Pokemon is not the massively competitive TCG it once was. You will find many people in your area that play and participate with the game, but not at a pro level. The TCG pros have moved to more competitive based games like Magic and The Spoils, and Pokemon is now just a friendly game. You will find however that the company that produces Pokemon will host league events where you can go and participate against other players in a friendly atmosphere and earn badges like the characters from the show.

Overall Pokemon is what it has always been, a children’s card game, but this has been changing with ways to play it on the PC like Pokemon Soul Silver ROM and other ROMs. The mechanics of the game are simple and easy to learn, and most all players are very friendly. As far as a competitive edge that is lost with this game, well what happened was children were introduced to the TCG world through Pokemon, and once they outgrew this simple game moved on to more complex and challenging games. Pokemon is always expanding, and coming out with new ways to surprise us, and many old players still have their cards and refuse to get rid of them. Why? Because Pokemon as a TCG holds a certain nostalgia that we can’t let go of, even as we get older. Children will always enjoy this game, and that is how it should be. Kids having fin and playing with others in a friendly environment, for not a whole lot if cash involved. Pokemon is a great game aimed at children, so therefore I recommend this game to children and their parents.