As you’re surely aware, Pokémon is serious business in Japan, with tournaments and competitions for the myriad playable variations so viciously competitive that many resort to illegally acquiring and modifying Pokémon.

In that sense, it’s odd that one of the most valuable pieces of Pokémon memorabilia, the Pokémon Illustrator card from the Pokémon Trading Card Game, serves absolutely no in-game purpose. It is, however, considered to be one of the rarest Pokémon cards in existence.

The Pokémon Illustrator was an extremely limited print card given to winners of the Pokémon Card Game Illustration Contest. Where a regular card’s rule text would normally be displayed is simply a message from the game creators acknowledging your incredible artistic ability:

“We certify that your illustration is an excellent entry in the Pokémon Card Game Illustration Contest,” the text reads. “Therefore, we state that you are an Officially Authorized Pokémon Card Illustrator and admire your skill.”

Unfortunately, activating “admirable artistic skills” has no effect on your opponent so the card serves no in-game purpose outside of enabling needless gloating. Besides, given the card’s crazy auction asking price of up to US$20,000, you’d probably want to drill this one into one of those heavy plastic preservation cases, rendering it very hard to incorporate into a deck anyway.

Only four of the cards have ever been sold, and only six ever printed. One most recently popped up in an English-language eBay ad with an asking price of $100,000. Sure, that price may be breaching exotic car territory, but this Pokémon card is surely easier to maintain.



With only five days left, the bidding is still open. If you’re feeling flush and buy the card, be sure to let us know!

Source: Hachima Kikou
Photos: eBay