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Sealed box of first-edition Pokémon card game boosters goes on auction for £200,000

Don’t Machoke on the price tag.

Pokémon trading card booster box
Image credit: Heritage Auctions

A sealed box of booster packs for the Pokémon card game, featuring 396 first-edition cards, has been put up for auction, with the current bid being $260,000 (£196,000).

The box - originally released in 1999 by Magic: The Gathering maker Wizards of the Coast - contains 36 booster sets which, in turn, hold 11 cards each. (Thanks, ICv2.) The packs feature the first-edition set of Pokémon trading cards made up of 102 different cards, including one of the popular fire Pokémon - Charizard - which is now considered one of the rarest Pokémon cards by itself. The auction house responsible for managing the booster box, Heritage Auctions, claims that it had sold a similar box for $198,000 in September.

According to Heritage, the booster box is still sealed and likely to be in perfect ‘gem mint’ condition due to the fact that the cards have not been handled yet. Customers interested in the lot will have to bid at least $270,000, alongside a minimum buyer’s fee of 20% on top - making it a minimum cost of $324,000 (£244,000) in order to be in with a chance of successfully acquiring the lot.

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The Pokémon trading card game is based on the popular video game series and sees two players facing off against each other to determine who is the better trainer. Players begin the game with a basic Pokémon in front of them, which they can gradually evolve over time into a more powerful version of the card.

As players evolve their Pokémon, they’ll be able to perform more devastating attacks on their opponent’s Pokémon - reducing their health points until the Pokémon faints and is no longer able to battle. Should a player no longer have any Pokémon left active or standing by, or should a player have six of their Pokémon faint in battle, then they lose the game and their opponent is named the winner.

Last month, an original holographic Charizard card - also known as shiny Charizard - was auctioned off for a record £169,000. The bidding began at $40,000, before eventually reaching $183,812 - the buyer’s fee then pushed it to $220,574 (£168,992). The card was bought by recently-retired rapper, Logic, who tweeted that he had made the winning bid.

The Pokémon first-edition booster box is on auction until November 19th.

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Alex Meehan avatar
Alex Meehan: After writing for Kotaku UK, Waypoint and Official Xbox Magazine, Alex became a member of the Dicebreaker editorial family. Having been producing news, features, previews and opinion pieces for Dicebreaker for the past three years, Alex has had plenty of opportunity to indulge in her love of meaty strategy board games and gothic RPGS. Besides writing, Alex appears in Dicebreaker’s D&D actual play series Storybreakers and haunts the occasional stream on the Dicebreaker YouTube channel.
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