Pokemon cards have been highly popular after the inception of Pokemon TCG in 1999. There have been a lot variations among Pokemon cards in terms of their animation and design. This is how experienced Pokemon card collectors understand the prices of different cards. And they also understand which ones are vintage and which ones are more modern.
From the original run, there are three types of Pokemon cards. Among them, one is the 1st edition Pokemon cards which is coveted by a lot of card collectors. In this article, we’re going to talk about how to differentiate between 1st Edition Pokemon Cards from Shadowless and Unlimited. So without further ado let’s get into it.
1st Edition Pokemon Cards
1st edition cards are the ones that were released on the first year of the inception of Pokemon TCG. These are the first run of cards for the release of those Pokemons. The general characteristic of the 1st edition cards is a neat little stamp on the bottom left of the photo of the Pokemon written first edition. These are also known as base sets. The purpose of the stamp is to separate these cards from the less popular ones. An important factor is that immediately after Pokemons inaugural 1999 release, there were some tweets made, which weren’t on any future releases. And that’s how the immergence of Shadowless and Unlimited occurred. So, these asthetic tweets are what made the 1999 cards super rare as learnt in the hobby, it typically translates to higher value.
These Charizard 1st edition Pokemon cards are sometimes even referred as the “ 1952 Mickey Mantle” of the TCG. Charizard is also termed as the king of Pokemon. 1st edition Charizards command a value of dollar twenty thousand and above. Moreover, the prices just seem to only increase. A first edition box will cost you around $50,000 and individual packs $800 a piece.
The shadowless cards were released after the 1st edition cards. These were printed without the 1st edition stamp. These cards don’t have a drop shadow of the photo of the Pokemon just as the 1st edition ones. But, afterwards the design was changed and a few tweaks were made. Among them, one was the drop shadow. Shadowless Cards are the mirror images of the 1st edition ones except for the stamp. This is a photo of a shadowless Poliwrath next to a 1st edition.
The Unlimited Cards were released after the Shadowless and the 1st edition Cards. These cards do not have the base set stamps at the bottom of the Pokemon photo. Thus, they are deprived of the 1st edition status. These Unlimited cards come with shiny holographic features. These cards are, as the name suggests, less limited. And perhaps we all know that rarity and desirability of Pokemon cards go hand in hand. So, the more rare your card is, the more valuable it will be. So, sadly, as the Unlimited cards are more widely available, these are less expensive. A key differentiator of the Unlimited cards from the Shadowless and 1st edition is the drop shadow present in the Unlimited cards.