Most Expensive 1st Edition Pokémon Cards

Written By // SU Staff in Pokémon

1st Edition Pokémon Card Guide

First Edition Pokémon cards are cards that were included in the first print run of a Pokémon card set. Usually, 1st Edition cards are only available in booster packs for a limited amount of time after the release of a new set. These cards were then replaced by the Unlimited Edition for a short period of time as well.

Wizards of the Coast started using 1st Edition runs with the English release of the Base Set all the way until the end of Neo Destiny. At the time, Japanese cards did not have 1st Edition printings. Compared to the Unlimited cards, 1st Edition cards are worth significantly more.

Let’s take a look at some of the most expensive 1st Edition Pokémon cards on the market today. 

Introduction

How To Spot 1st Edition Cards?

Just below the featured Pokémon’s artwork, there is a 1st Edition stamp showcasing its status. This is the feature that separates the 1st Edition cards from the less-valuable regular cards. After the 1999 feature release, there were some changes that were made to the 1st Edition cards. 1st Edition cards always lack a shadow on the right of the Pokémon’s artwork box. The only two types of cards to have no shadow are 1st Edition and Shadowless cards.

Another way to tell if your card is a 1st Edition is by looking at the date. Typically, 1st Edition cards have a copyright line that says: “1995, 96, 98, 99 Nintendo, Creatures, GAMEFREAK”. Shadowless cards can also include this copyright, however Unlimited cards do not include the ’99 year on the line. 

How To Spot 1st Edition Pokemon Cards

Most Valuable 1st Edition Pokémon Cards

Explore the 1st Edition Pokémon cards that have sold for the most money at auction.

2012 Pokémon B&W Lugia EX- Holo Plasma Storm

1999 Pokémon Game Charizard- Holo 1st Edition

The scarcity of this 1st Edition Charizard in Mint condition has caused this card’s price to skyrocket. This card is such an iconic card for the Pokémon TCG and a fan favorite. This card came from the first English printed set, the Pokémon Base Set, and is the first printed English Charizard card. This 1st Edition Charizard does have a high population, but an extremely low PSA 10 grading, making this card very valuable. This card also has a very high nostalgic value to both old and new Pokémon collectors. 

PSA Population Report:

This card has been graded by the PSA 3,534 times. The lowest grade, with 26 cards, is an Auth. The most common grade, with 696 cards, is a Mint 9 grade. This 1st Edition Holo Charizard card only has 121 cards graded a perfect Gem Mint 10 condition. This card may seem to have a high Mint 10 population, but due to its demand it still drives this cards value up significantly. 

Average Selling Price: $335,175

2012 BW Lugia EX Holo Plasma Storm PSA Data

2000 Pokémon Neo Genesis Lugia- Holo 1st Edition

2000 Pokémon Neo Genesis Lugia- Holo 1st Edition

This 1st Edition Neo Genesis Lugia is the first to feature an attack requiring three different energy types. This master of the Legendary birds is the most sought- after card in the Neo Genesis expansion. This sparkling Lugia card looks fantastic with artwork by Hironobu Yoshida, featuring a flying Lugia and a sparkling Holofoil background.

PSA Population Report:

This Neo Genesis 1st Edition Lugia card has been graded by the PSA 2,303 times. The lowest grade given, with 27 cards, is a PR 1 grade. The most common grade given, with 816 cards, is a NM-MT 8 grading. This card does have a decently low Mint 10 population, with 43 cards. But due to its age and nostalgia, it still packs a high punch at auction.

Average Selling Price: $60,000

2000 Pokémon Neo Genesis Lugia- Holo 1st Edition PSA Data

1999 Pokemon Game Blastoise Holo 1st Edition

1999 Pokémon Game Blastoise- Holo 1st Edition

This 1st Edition Blastoise card is high on the list of valuable sought-after cards in the Pokémon Trading Card Game. This Blastoise card is one of the three Water-type Holofoils that came in the expansion. Blastoise is popular for being the final evolutionary stage of Squirtle, one of the three original starter Pokémon in the video games.

PSA Population Report:

This 1999 1st Edition Blastoise card has been graded 2,255 times by the PSA. The lowest grade, with 9 cards, is an Auth grading. The most common grade, with 604 cards, is a Mint 9 grading. There are exactly 100 of these 1st Edition Blastoise cards that have been graded a perfect Gem Mint 10 grading by the PSA.

Average Selling Price: $50,000

1999 Pokemon Game Blastoise Holo 1st Edition PSA Data

1999 Pokemon Game Chansey Holo 1st Edition

1999 Pokémon Game Chansey- Holo 1st Edition

This cute Chansey card is one of the highest HP valued cards in the 1st Edition Base Set, with only Charizard having as high of a HP value. Chansey is also one of two Normal-type Holos in the Base Set. The artwork by Ken Sugimori is awesome, with the Holofoil background really bringing the artwork together. This card also has a pretty low Gem Mint 10 grade which helps to keep this cards value pretty high and in demand.

PSA Population Report:

This 1999 1st Edition Chansey card has been graded by the PSA 1,528 times. The lowest grade, with 6 cards, is an Auth. The most common grade, with 404 cards, is a Mint 9 condition. This Chansey card has been graded a perfect Gem Mint 10 condition 48 times. This card has a very low Gem Mint 10 population and can fluctuate in its prices.

Average Selling Price: $35,000

1999 Pokemon Game Chansey Holo 1st Edition PSA Data

1999 Mewtwo Holo 1st Edition Shadowless

1999 Pokémon Game Mewtwo- Holo 1st Edition

Mewtwo was one of the first Legendary Pokémon and was the strongest. Mewtwo has featured in numerous movies, games and series; this Pokémon sure does have a big fan base. Since Mewtwo’s first appearance in Pokémon: The First Movie- Mewtwo Strikes Back, it was revealed scientists genetically created a new Pokémon, Mewtwo. Since then, this incredibly strong Pokémon has rendered a big fan base, along with many Pokémon cards. This card is in high demand and has a very strong nostalgic demand for fans of the early Generation I days.

PSA Population Account:

This 1st Edition Mewtwo card has 1,445 cards that have been PSA graded. The lowest grade, with 5 cards, is an Auth. The most common grade, with 452 cards, is a Mint 9 condition. Only 81 of these cards have been graded a Gem Mint 10 condition.

Average Selling Price: $16,000

1999 Mewtwo Holo 1st Edition Shadowless PSA Data

1999 Pokemon Game Raichu Holo 1st Edition

1999 Pokémon Game Raichu- Holo 1st Edition

This adorable evolution of Pikachu looks fantastic on this card. This 1st Edition Raichu card joins Magneton and Zapdos as the three Lightning- Type Pokémon cards that are Rare holos in this set. These Shadowless cards from the very first set release are the most valuable. With only 87 of these cards being a PSA 10, there is a very high demand for this card with decently low inventory.

PSA Population Account:

This card has a pretty decent population with 1,624 of these 1st Edition Raichu cards being PSA graded. The most common grade for this card, with 422 cards receiving this grade, is a Mint 9. The lowest grade given, with 5 cards, is an Auth. There are 87 of these Raichu cards that have received a Gem Mint 10 condition.

Average Selling Price: $15,000

1999 Pokemon Game Raichu Holo 1st Edition PSA Data

1999 Pokemon Game Gyarados Holo 1st Edition

1999 Pokémon Game Gyarados- Holo 1st Edition

This 1st Edition Shadowless Gyarados card from the Base Set is the most expensive and valuable Gyarados card. Most of these Generation I Pokémon from the Kanto region are pretty valuable. When this card is a PSA 10 grade, it can be quite valuable, with only 86 of these cards having a PSA 10 grading. An average of $15,000 might not seem like a lot when compared to some of the higher value Pikachu or Charizard cards. But this card is still a very valuable, vintage card that many Pokémon fans have treasured since the early days of the franchise.

PSA Population Account:

This 1999 1st Edition Holo Gyarados card has been PSA graded 1,369 times. The lowest grade given to this card, with 5 grades, is an Auth grading. The most common grade, with 409 cards, is a Mint 9 condition. There are 86 of these Gyarados cards that have been graded a Gem Mint 10 condition.

Average Selling Price: $15,000

1999 Pokemon Game Gyarados Holo 1st Edition PSA Data

1999 PM League Promo Pikachu 1st Edition

1999 P.M. League Promo Pikachu 1st Edition

This 1st Edition League Promo Pikachu card is commonly referred to as Ivy Pikachu due to the background being made up of ivy leaves. This card was available in the 1st Edition release of the Jungle expansion and only a small number of these cards have the 1st Edition symbol. This cards population is very low, with only 9 cards being graded a PSA 10.

PSA Population Account:

This 1999 1st Edition League Promo Pikachu card has a pretty decent graded population of 191 cards being PSA graded. The lowest grade, with 2 cards, is an Auth. The most common grade, with 79 cards, is a Mint 9 condition. This League Promo Pikachu card only has 9 Gem Mint 10 grades.

Average Selling Price: $12,000

1999 PM League Promo Pikachu 1st Edition PSA Data

2001 PM Neo Revelation Shining Gyarados Holo 1st Edition

2001 P.M Neo Revelation Shining Gyarados Holo- 1st Edition

This 1st Edition Shining Gyarados card from the Neo Revelation may not be as valuable as the 1st Edition Gyarados card from the Base Set, but it still brings a high price value at auction. The Neo Revelation set was the first to introduce Shining Pokémon, which are rare variants of Pokémon that have different colors than normal. This Gyarados card, along with Magikarp, are the first two Pokémon that were given a Shining card. This Gyarados card has been graded a PSA 10 roughly 105 times and still goes for over $11,000 at auction. This is a fantastic card with really great artwork.

PSA Population Account:

There are 868 of this 1st Edition Shining Gyarados card that have been graded by the PSA. The lowest grade given, with 1 card receiving this grade, is an Auth. The most common grade, with 441 cards, is a Mint 9 condition. There are 105 of these Shining Gyarados cards that have received a perfect Gem Mint 10 condition.

Average Selling Price: $11,000

2001 PM Neo Revelation Shining Gyarados Holo 1st Edition PSA Data

1999 Pokemon Game Machamp Holo 1st Edition Shadowless

1999 Pokémon Game Machamp- Holo 1st Edition- Shadowless

This four-armed Fighting-type Machamp is a fantastic 1st Edition Pokémon card from the Base Set. This card was a very common card to come by when the Base Set first released. Now, this card has a very low PSA 10 population with only 5 cards receiving this grade. The Holofoil on this card really makes it look like Machamp’s arms are moving when the light changes on the card.

PSA Population Account:

This Shadowless 1st Edition Machamp card has been graded 1,665 times by the PSA. The lowest grade given, with only 1 card, is an Auth. The most common grade, with 352 cards, is an EX- MT 6 condition. Only 5 of these cards have received a perfect Gem Mint 10 condition grade. If this card had a lower population, it would be worth way more.

Average Selling Price: $8,000

1999 Pokemon Game Machamp Holo 1st Edition Shadowless PSA Data

 

Frequently Asked Questions About 1st Edition Pokémon Cards

Are 1st Edition Pokémon cards worth anything?

Yes, these cards are extremely valuable in Mint condition and can go for an outrageous sum of money at auction.

What is the rarest Generation 1 Pokémon card?

The 1999 Base Set Charizard #4 card is the rarest.

Are 1st Edition Pokémon cards from 1999 worth anything?

Yes, these cards are extremely valuable and generally can be worth thousands of dollars.

Are 1st Edition Pokémon cards rare?

Yes, since these cards are very old, they are a lot harder to come by.

What are 1st Edition cards?

These cards are the first print run of a particular set. These cards are usually only available in booster packs for a limited time after the initial release of an expansion, then they are replaced with an unlimited Edition until that printing stops.

Which 1st Edition set is the most valuable?

The most valuable 1st Edition cards come from the Base Set.

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