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The Rarest Pokémon Card Of All Time

"Pokémon" cards boomed during the pandemic after streamers like Logan Paul became interested enough to build a massive collection. It started an economic chain reaction where even McDonald's had its Happy Meal Pokémon cards flying off the shelves. Pokémon card collecting was finally cool, much to the dismay of longtime fans and players trying to get their hands on valuable cards. However, some might be wondering: Which is the rarest Pokémon card of all? 


Many of the most expensive Pokémon cards ever sold could arguably be the rarest of all time based on the judging criteria. However, some of them weren't even considered real cards because they were prototypes, or they were the most expensive but not necessarily the rarest. Many factors contribute to the rarity of a card, including the number of copies printed, the money the card is worth, and whether or not it's a card actually used in gameplay. 

Here's what we deemed the rarest Pokémon card of all time. This doesn't take into account prototype cards like pre-release Raichu and prototype Blastoise.

Secret Super Battle No. 1

Secret Super Battle No. 1, a card only given to a select few Pokémon training card players, is the rarest Pokémon card of all time, based on the number of copies and commercial value. According to Heritage Auctions, the Secret Super Battle No. 1 cards were given to seven regional tournament winners as tickets to compete in a "Super Secret Battle." This assumes that there are only seven in existence because they were only given to tournament winners.


PSA wrote that it reviewed seven Secret Super Battle No. 1 Cards in its history compared to the 19 it reviewed for the Pikachu Illustrator card. There are No. 2 and No. 3 versions of the card, depending on the card player's placement in a tournament, but No. 1 is the most valuable based on it representing "first place." The latest Secret Super Battle card story emerged after a No. 3 card got lost in the mail and the collector offered whoever found it at least one grand for its safe return. 


Runner-ups for the rarest card include the maximum 39 copies of the Pikachu Illustrator card and the Ishihara GX card given to between 30 and 200 attendees of the Pokémon CEO's 60th birthday. Some might argue that Pikachu Trophy cards are the rarest, but there's no public information available about how many were printed. Even if the rarest Pokémon card is debatable, all the cards mentioned in this article would likely fetch a hefty reward.