We've made it to the end of April, and while the current buzz is all about New Pokémon Snap, the Pokémon Trading Card Game market is still going strong! Now that players and collectors have had opportunities to pick up all the Battle Styles cards they need, the hype around the next set, Chilling Reign, has begun to hit highs as people rush to get product ordered before preorder prices skyrocket. With April in the books, let's take a look at the month's biggest winners and losers.
Mewtwo & Mew-GX (sm11-242)
Finished $161, up 13% from $142
Players have been coming up with plenty of different ways to power up Mewtwo & Mew-GX, making them incredibly playable in the current format depending on which support cards you own. While the Welder (sm10-189) version of this deck has shown up in various tournaments since the cards were released, the newer version dubbed "Rillaboom Box" gives a completely different way to play the deck by going all-in on the grass-types.
Sun & Moon Era Tag Teams have become harder and harder to find out in the wild, and as we reach a new Standard format, it might be time to look over your collection and see what you can flip before the dip.
Finished $7, up 40% from $5
Just this week we have started to see some of the cards being released in the Eevee Heroes Japanese set, and even though we don't have a release date for the English version yet, these cards are already making waves in the community! As the set will have a heavy focus on Eevee, we have already seen a few Pokémon VMAX versions of the Eeveelutions that will be in the set.
So far, Eevee V has only been released in English in the product-hover id="220310", so this card will definitely continue to go up in price as we receive more information about the set in the future.
Garchomp & Giratina-GX (sm11-247)
Finished $45, up 66% from $27
Garchomp & Giratina-GX is another Tag Team GX that stayed under the radar for a while, compared to some of the all-stars, but is slowly joining their ranks. The card has seen some success in tournaments and continues to perform well without taking the top spot in any of those recent events.
The Tag Teams were incredibly pivotal in shaping play in the last few years, and even when they rotate out of Standard, players will be looking to pick up these cards as memories of a lost format. With so much of the Pokémon TCG popularity being focused on collectors these cards may not see as bad a drop in the fall, but don't be surprised to find prices dropping over the next few months.
Speaking of collectors, once a current set has been out for a while, collectors begin to look further into the catalog to pick up older cards that may have dropped in price—and you can't go much further back than the Base Set! Base Set (Shadowless) is one of the more sought-after sets, and finding near-mint or lightly played shadowless cards can be a literal gold mine.
The high popularity cards like Charizard, Blastoise, and Venusaur have continued to hold high prices, but the real winners this month are the less popular cards like Alakazam and Zapdos. As these cards become harder to find in near-mint condition, collectors are willing to spend more if it means they can find a PSA 10 (or at least try for one), so it is imperative to keep your shadowless cards in great condition if you're not planning on sending them out to be graded yourself.
While Battle Styles is still being bought out in stores and Shining Fates has lost its lustre, Vivid Voltage cards have managed to hold onto their price tags while other singles are in free fall. Outside of the Pikachu VMAX (swsh4-188), Pikachu V (swsh4-170) and the higher-rarity trainers are still worth the price of a few packs. Now that the Vivid Voltage restocks are becoming more and more infrequent, finding packs in the wild has become harder, so players and collectors will start to turn toward the singles market to pick up anything they might have missed from the set while Battle Styles prices continue to cool. If you bought in big on Vivid Voltage, but were waiting to cash in, now might be the time!
Finished $17, down 19% from $21
Eternatus VMAX decks have continued to show up in all levels of competition and the decks look to get even better as old cards rotate and new cards get introduced, but the premium black and gold version from Shining Fates continues to plummet in price. Last month we watched the price fall from $31 to $23, but now the card has fallen even further into the $15-$18 range. If you wanted to max rarity your darkness deck, it might be time to pick these up while they're cheap.
Finished $276, down 22% from $355
If you haven't already sold your Charizard VMAX from Shining Fates, you will want to keep holding onto it. The chase card of the Shiny Vault has continued to drop in price because of the huge quantity of the card that hit the market. Currently, the Rainbow Secret Rare and Shiny Vault Rare are both holding a price of $250 after seeing a bit of a drop this month and will likely drop a bit further, so it might be better to send them off to be graded while you wait for the prices to go back up.
Finished $111, down 21% from $140
Shining Fates isn't the only set seeing card prices drop. Battle Styles is still the newest set, but now that the initial craze for the set is over, you can finally find boosters and elite trainer boxes at your local stores! The alternate art cards created additional hype around the set, leading to huge price tags in the beginning that have fallen off over time. Alternate-art Tyranitar V is a beautiful card, which makes it great to pick up if you are a collector and prices stay low. While you can still find Battle Styles packs in store, expect to see these alternate art cards continue to fall in price until the packs become more scarce when replaced by Chilling Reign in June.
Finished $55, down 21% from $70
Another loser from last month, Single Strike Urshifu VMAX (Alternate Art Secret) has continued to fall to $55. Unlike product-hover id="234268", Single Strike Urshifu hasn't made the same splash in the competitive meta which has led to a larger disparity between their prices. Chilling Reign has some potential to make Single Strike Urshifu relevant in the meta with new cards that build on the Single Strike mechanic, but if Single Strike Urshifu can't manage to take the top spot in an event, expect it to stay the less popular version of Urshifu in the future.
Like we previously saw with Champion's Path, smaller sets designed with collectors in mind have had disastrous results in the market. During the initial release weeks, card prices soar because of how rare it is to find packs for a reasonable price, but then prices bottom out once more of the community is able to get their hands on booster packs.
Currently, only three cards have maintained a price over $20: product-hover id="232527", product-hover id="232371", and Charizard VMAX (swsh45sv-SV107). The product-hover id="228821" has managed to maintain a price tag of $80, which makes it incredibly hard to make your money back unless you are able to pull exactly the right cards. If there are cards from the set that you'd like for your collection, the best time to buy those cards is right now while the community is still opening tons of packs and card prices remain low.
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Since we are in a month with no new set releases, we're seeing lots of sellers trying to unload cards to offset potential losses on the two sets. The Pokémon TCG continues to be incredibly popular, and while lower prices may seem like an indication of "the bubble bursting," the game's popularity across social media continues to climb. If you can afford to, now is the perfect time to pick up some of the higher-value cards as investments or collector pieces to send off to be graded.
Rather than trying to crack packs to look for the few high-value cards, it is better to sit on those sealed ETBs of Battle Styles and Shining Fates for another month, as then Chilling Reign will be on the shelves and the older sets will slowly become harder to find.