Remember my last article when I said I wasn't allowed to do articles with "Part 2" followups? Well, my editor hit me with, "Hey, you should make a Part 2 of the Cards You've Never Heard Of article." I'm not even kidding. I'm just gonna link that one right here: if you missed it last time around, check that one out too! And if you read it before, well, click through again so you can save yourself the catchy intro this time and we can get right into things.
Today we're looking at ten more Yu-Gi-Oh! cards that are so obscure, so weird, and so rare, that most players have never even heard of them.
There's very little documentation of this card. Twelve of them are known to be in circulation right now, and when one is offered for sale they historically sell behind closed doors for tens of thousands of dollars.
It's pretty crazy that this card even exists. It was played by Upper Deck Entertainment staff in a "Duel The Master" type event prior to 2005; when the Seal was played, a green lighting effect would illuminate the play area, and if the challenger lost, their photo was taken with an instant camera and placed on a "Wall of Souls" display. A long time ago, Kevin Tewart made a post on the Pojo forums about two UDE exclusive cards, a "Seal of Orichalcos" that matched the anime effect, and "Millennium Thousand-Eyes Virus." The former has surfaced several times in the last few years, while the latter has never been seen.
That's right Kevin, I remembered. I'll find one someday.
If you told me people didn't know this one existed, I would've called you a liar, but I did some asking around and a surprising number of people actually just don't know about this! In 2007 if you attended the Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game World Championship in Long Beach California, you were given this fancy card with a unique card backing: the front of the card declares that Get Your Game On! is "Not usable in Official Duels," while the back reads, "Thank you for attending the 2007 Yu-Gi-Oh! TRADING CARD GAME World Championship," and "This card not for sale."
Flash forward to today, and Get Your Game On! is the single most valuable 'common' in the world. It's seen as the only TCG exclusive card Japan will probably never get, placing it in a unique category with several OCG-only cards.
It's pretty well known that in 2009, Konami Digital Entertainment took back distribution of the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG from Upper Deck Entertainment. What's not as recognized is the reason why.
You can actually read the case details yourself as they're a matter of public record, but the long story short is that Upper Deck was creating counterfeit cards and making deals with other companies to give them product without the okay from the licensor (Konami). As a result there are some fake 1st Edition Ultimate Rare Elemental Hero cards in circulation even today, like Elemental HERO Flame Wingman and Elemental HERO Aqua Neos. Check your 1st Ed Ultimates and make sure their holographic Eye of Anubis stamps are gold, and not silver. These fakes are very convincing otherwise; for tips on how to spot fake cards, check out my article on how to spot counterfeits.
Somewhere in all of this, it seems Upper Deck made deals with the Matell toy company to package Parrallel Rare promo cards with Yu-Gi-Oh! action figures. The Series 1 and Series 2 cards were readily accessible, though extremely rare. But some of the cards from the third and final series, Series 3, were so rare they were thought to be lost forever, and the first picture of MF03 Cyber Dragon was only taken a couple months ago.
The gentlemen who found those MF03 cards sold them at auction for over $50,000!
Have you ever heard of "shadowless" Pokémon cards? The original printings of 1st Edition Base Set 1 cards didn't have shadows along the right edge of each Pokemon's artwork, and then neither did the first batch of unlimited prints.
Yu-Gi-Oh's had much the same thing, where the original Series 2 cards - and some from Series 3 - were reprinted later on in releases like Forbidden Legacy, Master Collections, and Legendary Collections, as well as some of the Special Editions from the GX era. In all of these cases you can actually physically tell which set each card is from, as each reprint has different physical features due to card updates. I'm going to be putting out an article in the near future, and even PSA Grading now labels these cards differently. (In the PSA grading label above, you can see that this particular unlimited edition Blue-Eyes White Dragon is designated as a "2010-2017" reprint, distinguishing it from the original unlimited print run.)
There are a couple of WCPP packs, but the 2010 series was the most low-key of the bunch. If you attended the World Championship in 2010 you could earn these packs in different ways, completing activities for a stamp rally, or competing in King Of The Hill-style tournament play. There were some really neat cards that debuted in this set, like the first TCG printing of Alligator's Sword with its "Joey-Speak" Brooklyn accent flavor text, and Key Mace. A decade later, the biggest cards from the set today now seem to be product-hover id="164469", product-hover id="164468", and the other Key Mace card debuting in the set, product-hover id="164465"!
Starting in 2004, Duelist League - a local level OP program offered at stores - had exclusive reprintings of popular anime cards offered in alternate rarities At first they were Super Rare versions of cards like Thousand-Eyes Restrict and Necrovalley, and other countries even got cards like Barrel Dragon and Time Wizard.
Later on, the Duelist League started offering new cards as promos, like Last Day of Witch and Breath of Light. There was even a Machine King with a white name stamp, and an product-hover id="223736" that's actually extremely rare (it almost deserves its own entry on this list).
These events were run in conjunction with tons of other local level events like Hobby League and Battle City, and because Duelist League was exclusive to youth-division players in later years, they wound up being sparsely attended. Eventually this program changed to offer Rare cards printed with uniquely coloured names, including really popular cards like Dark Magician Girl (Red), BBlue-Eyes White Dragon (Bronze), and Dark Magician (RED). Most Duelist League cards came in up to four different colours!
Speaking of old Duelist League Promos, as I mentioned above, Duelist League promos were sometimes different in European territories, like that Time Wizard and Barrel Dragon. In Canada got DL1 cards in French, including Dark Magician and Blue-Eyes White Dragon. They have a sort of unique rarity, where their names are stamped in silver foil, but they have foil artwork as well.
It's actually thought that these might have been cards from the first Forbidden Legacy package, as they match the set IDs and artworks, and French Canadian sets even changed the set abbreviations, so it's certainly possible that FL1 cards might have become DL1 cards as a quirk of localization or a one-off decision. But these cards came out over a year before Forbidden Legacy was released, so it's hard to say for sure!
These don't actually exist. Seriously. Try and find them.
This is a pair of cards from Tournament Pack 2. And like, only Tournament Pack 2.
Novox's Prayer and Skull Guardian were never reprinted, which means they were never released in territories like Europe, Australia, and South America. There were a few cards in similar situations, like Dokurorider, but they've all been reprinted now including Dokurorider, some of them as recently as Speed Duel: Battle City Box.
And therein lies the true wonder: Novox's Prayer is the last surviving "Magic Card' in the game. It was printed before all magic cards were changed to spells. Skull Guardian also the last card to refer to a "Magic Card" in its card text. These are some of the rarest cards in the game and worth quite a fortune, even though Novox's Prayer is just a regular rare. It's one of, if not the most expensive one!
A year before Speed Duels started, select OTS stores were emailed about an opportunity to demo a then-new concept called Speed Duels. Stores that applied were given a few kits of demo decks and a rule sheet, and were to report back on how the demos were received.
But so few stores actually did this, that when the program actually started up a couple months later, the stores were given more decks than originally advertised due to how many had been printed. These decks were opened, played with by children, without sleeves, and then returned to the store owners. The decks were then returned to Konami, and were destroyed, or… not.
Fewer than five kits from these demos are known to have survived, and none of the cards are in very good condition. Because they're prototype cards, they have a distinctly lighter grey border, no Eye of Anubis hologram, no foiling, and a lighter ink printing. The Kaiba deck even includes a Blue-Eyes White Dragon! You can see them all over on Yugipedia.
That's right, just like last time, we're ending on yet another Summoned Skull from Starter Deck Yugi. Similar to product-hover id="228257", Warner Brothers had a special promotional event with an SDY Summoned Skull as the prize, prior to the official release of the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG in North America. These have a different text box than the regular SDY one - the line ends on a different word - and no Eye of Anubis. The card's also very glossy.
Tune in next time for Altergeist Part 2: (You Can Still) Geist in America. Since we're setting precedents and all.