Rare Pokemon Card Sells for $195,000

Published: October 25, 2019 12:30 PM /


Rare Pokemon Card

An incredibly rare Pokemon card has just sold for a record-breaking price at auction, selling at $195,000. The card, The Pokémon Illustrator (better known as the Pikachu Illustrator), is one of the most valuable cards in the Pokemon Trading Card Game.

If you're interested in the how rarity can impact the value or impression of a card, we've got a few guides to get you up to speed, such as Magic: The Gathering Cards, Digimon Cards, and Pokemon Cards.


The card was a prize for CoroCoro readers in Japan, as part of an illustration contest to design their own Pokemon cards. The contest would reward the winners by receiving the Pikachu Illustrator card. Some runner-ups in the contest would also receive the card, with an estimated total of 39 cards produced and distributed in 1998. Drawn by Pikachu-creator Atsuko Nishida, and featuring a holo-backed background, the card was a gorgeous piece of artwork that has never been replicated.

Today, there is no way of knowing how many authentic Pikachu Illustrator cards still exist. 

Interestingly enough, the card itself has no value in the trading card game, as the description, roughly translated, reads "We certify that your illustration is an excellent entry in the Pokémon Card Game Illust Contest. Therefore, we state that you are an Officially Authorized Pokémon Card Illustrator and admire your skill."


The card has a history of demanding high prices. Back in 2016, a copy of the card would sell for $54,970 at auction. Copies of the card have turned up on websites like Ebay over the years, with varying degrees of quality. One is claimed to have been sold for close to $100,000 in 2013. 

The card was sold at the New York-based Weiss Auctions, and was graded at PSA-9, which is considered one of the highest quality gradings you can recieve for a rare card. Most of the Pikachu Illustrators seen have ranged from a PSA grade of 7.5-9, which does affect their overall value to collectors. 

What are your thoughts on this auction? Would you pay $195,000 for such a rare card? Leave your comments below. 



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Release Date
October 1, 1996 (Calendar)