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Pokemania: Pokemon Trading Card Game

   With the recent popularity of original Pokemon cards as well as the popularity of the card game as a whole, it's about time to look at the Pokemon Trading Card Game from its beginnings to the controversies and to where it is today. Grab your decks and get ready for the history of the Pokemon Trading Card Game.

     Starting in 1996 in Japan and coming to America in 1998, the game was handled not only by Creatures Inc, but also by other companies. Media Factory in Japan and Wizards of the Coast in America. In the case of Wizards of the Coast, Nintendo took away their license due to wanting more control and for better quality cards in 2003. There was a lawsuit due to this that same year, however it was settled out of court. With this they made Pokemon USA, otherwise known as Pokemon Company International. Media Factory stopped distribution of the card game in 2006, it still had a hand in the brand until 2013. As of now the card game is handled by the Pokemon Company. 

     The card game itself has had very little in the way of basic mechanic gameplay changes since the beginning. While new types of Pokemon and card types have been introduced, it has persevered throughout its twenty plus year run. While Magic The Gathering started the trend of competitive card games, Pokemon has helped usher in younger players with an easier learning curve. This makes the game more accessible in terms of new players.

     At the height of popularity Toys R Us would host official events called Pokemon Leagues. These leagues would run each Saturday and was basically a meet and learn event where kids can come to learn the game and play with others. They also would receive badges for being part of the league. Local card shops were doing events for the card game as well. Done in the style of tournaments which sparked off the Play! Pokemon program in 2003. This was the official organized tournament program for the card game and video games. 

     As the card game grew it has maintained a good amount of popularity. After going to a regional tournament in Dallas it was packed and showed the game is thriving. People o all ages that grew up with it since the start or have been newly brought into it laugh and play the game and have fun. Which sums up the game pretty well. It's fun yet challenging. Hopefully this little retrospective will get people interested in the game. If you want to give it a try before buying anything, there is an official online version that is free. If you want to play in person, check out your local game store. Remember folks to live life and live nostalgic. 

                

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echidna64 Posted on Jul 07, 2021 at 09:37 PM

My friends group were predominantly collectors (I think we didn't fully understand the rules of the game). The Toys R Us held Pokemon TCG tournaments weekly. My goal was just to try to catch-em all.

Later on I became a big fan of the Pokemon TCG on the Gameboy Color. That's where I truly learned the mechanics of the game.

Benjanime Posted on Jul 06, 2021 at 03:55 PM

it must have been a thrill going to whatever card tournaments you could, since i wasn't into the card game for very long i never thought about going to them. though since living in virginia and knowing about a certain fellow named chris chan and hearing about his incidents in one of the areas that held their own card game tournaments, maybe it's for the best that i didn't have it on my mind lol.

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