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Pikachu Illustrator Sells For $900,000

Just when you thought the Pokemon ‘stimmy check’ hype-cycle was long over, a new record-breaking auction just proved all of us wrong. Considered by many to be the holy grail of Pokemon cards, records show that a Pikachu Illustrator sold for an astonishing $900,000 in auction last week.

Originally issued as a prize for an illustration contest back in 1998, it is believed that only 41 of these cards were ever issued. It’s unclear how many of them are actually in marketable condition. Atsuko Nishida, the artist behind the original design of Pikachu, was also the one who drew this amazing card which likely lends itself to the high asking price.

This is not the first time Pikachu Illustrator has made headlines. Exactly one year ago, a very comparable card sold for a whopping $375,000. Back in 2019, the same card also sold for $195,000. Back in 2016, it sold for $74,000. The meteoric rise in valuation for this specific card is actually proving to be a great proxy for the broader Pokemon market.

Pikachu Illustrator Selling for $74,000 in 2016

This begs the question: will we see cards selling for a million dollars soon? At the current pace, it seems almost inevitable. An especially rare version of the Pikachu Illustrator card is currently listed on eBay at an asking price of $4,000,000. The seller isn’t even accepting offers suggesting that the asking price is firm.

Pikachu Illustrator Listed for $4,000,000 on eBay

What do you think?

Written by Michael

Opinions are my own. I enjoy writing about the good and the bad of the trading card game industry. Some articles may be written using artificial intelligence technology. If there is a factual error in one of the articles, please email me the correct information and I'll gladly make revisions. In my personal life, I participate in an amateur polo league and occasionally put around in a Cessna 172


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  1. I have never really been a fan of promotional cards. You see this in other TCGs as well. Obviously the market disagrees with me but I feel like just because you got some some card (often times unplayable in the actual game) at an event 20 years ago doesn’t mean the card is rare or useful. If anything, it is even harder to value. I’d much rather pay top dollar for a rare card that can be found in the wild….not some fart sniffing fake scarcity type nonsense.

    • I think it’s personal preference but I kinda agree. Promotional cards just have a much less tangible valuation. MetaZoo is a great example of this. I would much rather sink money into a Red Ink than some artist signed sample card.

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