Heritage Auctions draws $840,000 for rare Pokemon 'Pikachu' Illustrator card

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Heritage Auctions draws $840,000 for rare Pokemon 'Pikachu' Illustrator card
Pokémon "Pikachu" Illustrator Unnumbered Promo CoroCoro Comics PSA Trading Card Game 9 (The Pokémon Company, 1998).

DALLAS, TX.- An extraordinarily rare Pokémon card soared to $840,000 in Heritage Auctions’ Trading Card Games Signature® Auction June 11-12. That’s the highest price ever paid for a Pokémon card at public auction.

The record-setting card led the 491-lot event to a total of $2,887,177 in total sales. Nearly 1,500 global bidders entered the fray, leading to perfect sell-through rates of 100% by value and by lots sold.

The Pokémon “Pikachu” Illustrator Unnumbered Promo CoroCoro Comics PSA Trading Card Game 9 (The Pokémon Company, 1998) is incredibly rare, one of just 39 made and released during three CoroCoro Comics illustration events – all in 1998.

“This is absolutely the Holy Grail for serious Pokémon collectors, with only one copy anywhere that earned a higher grade,” Heritage Auctions Trading Card Games Consignment Director Jesus Garcia said. “By fending off the competition, the winning bidder ended up with an extraordinary card, one of the finest and rarest in the world, and one that immediately becomes a collection centerpiece and the envy of others who have chased this card for years.”

One of the rarest of Pokémon cards, a Pokémon “Kangaskhan” Family Event Trophy Card Promo 115 Parent/Child Mega Battle PSA Trading Card Game 9 (The Pokémon Company, 1998) brought a winning bid of $81,000. It came from a tournament in which players teamed up with their parents to compete as teams vying for this card. The Pokémon featured on the card is Kangaskhan, who carries its infant inside its pouch, perfect for the tournament's theme, and the card is one of a select few featuring as the set symbol the original Pocket Monsters Trading Card Game logo, which was intended only to be used on the rarest of all cards.

Magic: The Gathering
The Magic: The Gathering Black Lotus Limited Edition (Alpha) BGS Trading Card Game 7 (Wizards of the Coast, 1993) is the most sought-after Magic: The Gathering trading card in existence, a status that was reflected clearly in the demand for this beauty, which ended at $87,000. This card is part of the most powerful group of cards in the entire game, known as the “Power Nine” – cards that did not deliver victory in the game, but they sure helped. Wizards of the Coast (WOTC) released the Alpha Edition in August 1993, and its popularity convinced WOTC to print out the Beta Edition just two months later. Wizard of the Coast printed just 1,100 copies of the Alpha Black Lotus, making each time one comes up for public auction a noteworthy event. The artwork is done by Christopher Rush. BGS has certified 17 copies NEAR MINT 7 grades and 206 graded higher.

A Magic: The Gathering Splendid Genesis RG97 BGS Trading Card Game 8 (Wizards of the Coast, 1997) Richard Garfield Promos – notable because it was gifted to Richard Garfield’s family and friends only – sold for $72,000. The card had a print run of 110 copies, and this is only the second time a copy has been offered at a public auction.

A Magic: The Gathering Beta Edition Starter Deck (Wizards of the Coast, 1993), which closed at $31,200, is from the second print run sparked by the game’s immediate initial success and popularity. It is identifiable as a Beta Edition by the barcode on the bottom, and does not say the words “Unlimited Edition.”

The only CGC-certified copy of the Yu-Gi-Oh! The Seal of Orichalcos UDE Duel the Master Event, CGC Trading Card Game 7 (Upper Deck Entertainment, 2005) sparked competitive bidding until it finished at $26,400. One of fewer than 30 made (to reduce or prevent counterfeiting), this example comes from the Seal of Orichalcos Challenge, a side event hosted by Upper Deck that pitted its R&D department against challengers from among attendees at Gencon and other major conventions. This auction was the first time this card has been offered for public sale fully authenticated by CGC; this example is the only version of the card fully authenticated by any company.

Other top lots included, but were not limited to:

• $204,000: Pokémon First Edition Base Set Sealed Booster Box (Wizards of the Coast, 1999)

• $49,854: Pokémon No. 3 Trainer Tropical Mega Battle CGC Trading Card Game 8.5 (The Pokémon Company, 1999) Holo

• $40,800: Pokémon EX Deoxys Set Sealed Booster Box (Pokémon, 2005)

• $38,400: Pokémon UK Edition Base Set Uncut Sheet (Wizards of the Coast, 1999-2000)

• $25,200: Magic: The Gathering Phoenix Heart RG2015 BGS Trading Card Game 9 (Wizards of the Coast, 2014) Richard Garfield Promos

• $25,200: Pokémon Charizard 006 25th Anniversary Creatures Corporate History Deck CGC Trading Card Game 9.5 (The Pokémon Company, 2021)

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