Where is Pokemon made | Are Pokemon Cards Made in China?

Where is pokemon made? Pokemon Cards are immensely popular, and they have been for a few decades now. Some of the cards can go for incredibly high prices too. As a result, it probably will not surprise you that these cards are highly faked. It isn’t even that difficult to stumble across the cards either.

You can find them in various markets and, in some cases, toy stores that do not have a contract with any Pokemon Trading Card Game distributor. Here, we want to tell you a little bit about this game, as well as tell you where the cards are printed.

Where Are Pokemon Cards Made?

All Pokemon cards begin their life with the Pokemon Company in Japan. This is where the cards are designed. The English version of the TCG and the Japanese version of the game play slightly differently, but all design and testing is carried out in the same building.

All Japanese cards are printed within Japan, as well as certain Pokemon cards intended for the Asian markets.

It is unlikely that English cards will be printed in Japan, though. It would be far too costly for the company to print the cards here and ship them around the world. Instead, the Pokemon Company works closely with printers around the world. It is the job of the printers to produce the card for them.

Variations in Card Printings

Interestingly, due to the variation in where cards are printed, a card can feel different if it was printed in the United States in comparison to Europe. This is actually a major problem with other trading card games. Take Magic the Gathering, for example.

Cards in the US are notorious for poor quality control, whereas European ones (often printed in Belgium) are famed for being great to the touch.

It is difficult to know exactly where the cards are printed. The Pokemon Company doesn’t talk about it too much. It won’t even say where the cards have come from on your booster pack or the printed cards. All you will know is that they were designed by The Pokemon Company.

We suppose that this is to ensure that people do not track down cards from certain printers or at least make it easier for The Pokemon Company to change who they use for their printing.

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No matter where the card was printed, as long as it has been printed by one of the official printers for the Pokemon Trading Card game, then it is legal to play. So, a card printed in one of the European printers can be played in the US, or even in Brazil.

where is pokemon made

Quality of Prints and PSA Grading

This is one of the main reasons for the fluctuations of scores when having a card officially graded by the PSA. You can pull a very rare and expensive card out of a booster box, sleeve it up, send it in for grading, and receive it back with a score of an 8 when you were expecting a 10.

Also, if you have older cards lying around that you would like to get graded, then it would be beneficial to do a quick cleaning of the card to obtain the highest score possible before sending it in.

How Can You Tell if a Pokemon Card is Fake?

As we said, many of the fake cards that you find on the market have been printed in China. A lot of them come from the same places too. This means that, more often than not, being able to spot fakes is dead simple.

In this section, we want to walk you through a few of the ways that you can tell a Pokemon Card is fake. Do not take this as a complete guide, though. If something isn’t an obvious fake, or the card is valuable, then take it to a proper appraiser. Working with PSA is fantastic for this, although it may cost you a bit of money.

Ideally, to make your life a bit easier, you will have access to a confirmed ‘real’ card. If not, then at least a photograph of one.

Fake cards never use the real font that real Pokemon cards do. They do not have access to these fonts. This is probably the biggest way to identify fake cards.

Mispellings

Real cards do not have misspellings. Fake cards do.

You may also see misprints on the number of energies to carry out certain moves and even on the amount of HP or damage a particular Pokemon can do.Printing holographic cards is hard. So, if a card is meant to be holographic but it isn’t, then there is a strong chance that it could be a fake card.

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In recent years, this has been less of an indicator as to the realness of the card, though. Any card in a Pokemon set can now be found in a holographic form and, outside of EX and GX cards, all of the rares can be found in both holographic and non-holographic formats. It is a great way to compare older sets, though.

Discoloration

Pokemon cards use some pretty specific colors. In fact, they are highly thematic on their colors. Even though printing companies may differ, there shouldn’t be that much variation between real cards on the coloring front. There will be when it comes to fake cards, though. Fake cards never get it right. They are either too bright or too dull.

There will be small variations in the color on real cards too. If you look at a real card, there will be small details in the shading. You won’t get those on fake cards due to the way that they have been made.

Card Stock

Real Pokemon cards are made up of three layers. This helps to give them thickness. Fake cards are not. They will a lot thinner. Not quite paper, but certainly like a thicker sheet of paper.

For a more detailed guide about identifying fake Pokemon cards, check out our in depth article here.

where is pokemon made

Final Thoughts

Pokemon Cards are never made in China. If cards are available in China, then they will have been produced in Japan or they are fake.

If you buy English cards that claim to have been made in China, then you absolutely have a fake card in your hands. English cards tend to only be printed in Europe and the United States.

Pokémon World Championships 2023 Made Me Reconsider My TCG Loves

Pokémon World Championships 2023 is a revitalization of the brand. A celebration of a storied history returning to where it all began, the three day event features the best of the best competing in every competitive Pokémon offering available. While the VGC and Unite remain spectacles in their own right, however, it’s the overall presentation and approach to the Pokémon TCG that’s made this trip so memorable.

As someone who collected Pokémon cards from the first set all through childhood, it’s tempting to view the TCG as a primarily collectible-driven endeavor.

There’s certainly no shortage of variants – it’s hard to find a popular Pokémon that hasn’t received interesting art treatments across multiple sets. Behind the allure of these cards, though, there’s a very competitive, intriguing, and intelligent game that is thriving in 2023.

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Watching Pokémon World Championships 2023 TCG competitors battle on stage is, perhaps a little surprisingly, must-watch viewing for anyone familiar with the game’s mechanics, even on a base level.

The tension of early turn setups spiraling into the more choice-based later turns that determine a winner are easy to follow from a spectator standpoint, unlike some more complex TCGs.

The simplicty of the rule set and the designs that allow for expression within those restrictions has produced a game that is accessible to children but appealing to adults looking for a competitive outlet.

All of this isn’t really news to anyone who has already become enamored with the Pokémon TCG brand. But as someone who drifted away from the game after a childhood spent hoarding cards but never attempting to build a deck, it’s a breath of fresh air.

I’ve followed the video games without missing a beat since Pokémon Red, but the TCG became a blind spot as I pushed to play Yu-Gi-Oh! and later Magic: The Gathering.

Now that Pokémon has returned to Japan for its World Championship and begun its festivities around the achievements of each of its games, I’m realizing how big a mistake that was.

Beyond the enjoyment of the card game itself, the Pokémon TCG also treats its players in a way that makes it feel like they’re appreciated. Watching competitors post about their travels to Japan, the massive slew of side events and offerings that exist in between rounds, and the respect with which returning champions or long-time players are treated, it’s obvious that in spite of the size of this game, no one has really fallen through the cracks.

Pokémon World Championships feels like esports in a way that other competitors fail to fully grasp. It’s partially the proximity to actual esports titles – Pokémon UNITE and Pokémon VGC – but it’s also more than that. There’s a sense of collaboration and excitement among competitors that really needs to be felt to be understood.

All that considered, as someone who has spent the past decade pursuing competitive card games as a hobby, I think it’s time to turn back to what started that infatuation in the first place.

Pokémon World Championships 2023 fully convinced me that my time and the Pokémon TCG will both be respected in the process of pursuing them; that’s a feeling of security that is even rarer than the cards I used to covet in the schoolyard.

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