Posted by Elena from Gaia Storm on 5/28/2021 to News
Hello everyone! This is Elena from Gaia Storm TCG, and it is a pleasure to be here. This will be the first of (I hope) many articles at PoTown Store, which is the best place to acquire Pokémon Trading Card Game codes.
Have you ever watched a cool stream or youtube video about Pokémon TCG and have decided to start playing, but everything seems overwhelming once you are logged in the game? We’ve all been there.
Join me in this journey to get familiar with Pokémon PTCGO’s unique trading system and understand how to get the cards you need!
Setting the scene: Tradable vs Non-tradable Items
The departing point and probably the most important thing to know about Pokémon Trading Card Game Online is that there are essentially two types of items in the game: Tradable and non-tradable ones.
- Non-tradable items are in-game rewards that can be obtained by completing certain missions or after logging for several days. You can use these items to build your decks but are “locked” into your account, meaning that you will not be able to do anything else. Non-tradable packs, for example, can be bought at the game shop (see image below), but all the cards you get once you open them will be locked.
- Tradable Items, on the contrary, are usually linked to real-life physical products you can redeem into the game. As a player, you can choose to use these items to trade them with other players and obtain what you need. Getting these types of items should be your #1 objective.
Tip: You can easily distinguish tradable and non-tradable items by checking if they have a lock icon. In the example below, I have 5 non-tradable copies of Aerodactyl and 1 that I can trade.
How do I get cards?
There are, broadly speaking, two ways of getting access to cards and items. The first option is to grind for packs and items without external help. This is a very cheap but time-consuming approach. The player plays many games every day to accumulate enough in-game resources (coins and tournament tickets) to buy non-tradable packs and, hopefully, open the cards he or she is looking for. If you are lucky enough, sometimes the game rewards you with tradable packs, but to be honest, this does not happen very frequently.
The second option is to directly acquire some physical codes that the player can use to trade with other users. As you can imagine, this is the preferred route for most players because it means that you never depend on luck to improve your decks. And what is great about this is that there is a wide range of possibilities as there are codes that unlock specific cards for you! For example, imagine that you are currently looking for a copy of Crobat V, one of the best Pokémon in the game. Instead of grinding for packs, you can purchase Crobat’s VMAX Collection code and get it instantly in your account. And in case you don’t want to use Crobat anymore, it won’t be locked so that you can trade it for packs or other cards in the future!
What is trading?
Ok, Elena, now I get it, tradable packs are more flexible, but… can you explain a bit more in detail what the trading system is about? What do I do with them?
Unlike many other Online Trading Card Games, Pokémon allows the player to directly use unlocked items to be part of a dynamic marketplace. Let’s imagine I have redeemed a code, and I have a copy of good V Pokémon, but, right now, I am not really going to use it. Instead, I want to finish my water deck. I can use my tradable V card to trade it for the cards I am missing! And this applies to any other item, whether they are packs, singles, or game accessories.
How do I trade?
Now, this is where the fun begins! It would be best if you went to the Trade section from the navigation bar to get started. There, you will be able to perform different actions.
- You can create an offer by clicking on the “Create Trade” button. Choose what you want to get and what you are giving in exchange. Note that you will decide if the offer is public (every user will be able to see it) or a private one (only the user you are selecting will have visibility over it).
- You can explore all available public offers by clicking on the Public Offers Tab. These are trades that other players had created. Check them carefully and if you see something that meets your expectations, click on accept!
Pro tip: use the searcher and the filters on the upper side of the screen to fine-tune your search. For example, I can type “Inteleon VMAX” to get a filtered list of trades containing that specific card.
- Offers to me will display the private offers you have received from other users.
- And finally, you will have access to your own Trade history, which is pretty useful to keep track of your pack's transactions.
How can I know how much a card is worth?
That is really a fantastic question that I get a lot. Something to note here is that, normally, packs (specifically the most recent Standard expansion) are the Pokémon Trading Card Game currency, and that is how items are valued. For example, you will see that many users ask for, say, 8 Battle Style packs in exchange for a copy of Crobat V. The better or the more popular a card is, the more packs it will cost.
There is no easy answer for identifying the exact value of a card because, as you can imagine, there is no official PVP there. Cards are worth what users are willing to pay, and that is the reality. What I normally would do before posting or accepting a trade is going into the trades wall, checking what users are asking, and giving in exchange for a card to get an idea. If I see that users are selling their Crobat V for 8 packs and buyers are offering 6, maybe I can try 7 as my initial offer and modify it if I see that I am not getting results. That doesn’t mean that you can’t trade cards for cards, of course, but bear in mind that packs are the most popular items to trade.
Lastly, there is one more important thing to note, and it is the fact that prices are constantly evolving. If a card suddenly becomes played in a popular deck, it will clearly increase its price due to the demand. Keep an eye on tournaments and try to anticipate trends, so you don’t end up buying during the peak.
There are some online pages that you can use for an initial reference, like PTCGO Prices. Do bear in mind that while this site is a great tool to get updated prices, it provides you with the available public offers, and that doesn’t mean you can actually trade for slightly different values. Use this page as an estimation of ranges and go from there.
And to conclude, let me share with you some personal tips I’ve learned after all these years of experience trading in PTCGO:
- Don’t give up soon: There might be some rare cards that people are unwilling to trade easily, and it won't be easy to find public offers. Don’t panic if your trades don’t get accepted during the first day. Keep trying for a while, and it will pay off.
- Opening packs is not a very good idea: When you have tradable packs, opening them comes with a risk. Yes, I know it is thrilling to open them and see what is inside, but the reality is that sometimes you will only find common cards that are very difficult to trade (or not even worth using). If you want to improve your decks, the best way to do so is to always buy and trade packs for the concrete cards you are looking for.
- Keep an eye on the public offers section: If you take some time to check the trades that other people are posting, not only will you get first-hand info about the market, but sometimes you will find excellent deals. And when you do, go for them before another person accepts!
And that was it! I hope you enjoyed this little trading guide and that the next time you log in to your Pokémon card game, you see things in a new light. You will be amazed to see how easy it gets when you have a few Battle Styles codes in your account.
If you have any questions about starting in Pokémon TCG, I am always eager to help. You can find me on Youtube, and other channels (@gaiastorm), so drop and say hi! Thanks for reading!