I don’t have many IRL peers who would relate to this frustration so I am taking advantage of the “need to vent” part of this subforum to express my built up annoyance over the last few weeks.
I am not really angry at anybody. Unless you are really researched or invested in the hobby, it is very difficult to tell cards apart from one another. People are going through their childhood collections trying to make sense of their cards and list them accurately and it is a challenge in any language, but I am sure is even moreso with Japanese cards and their many more minute variations and differences. But over the last few weeks I have ended up on the wrong end of this numerous times and due to the language barrier and proxy purchases there is nothing I can really do about it.
I am currently collecting vintage Japanese promos. Some cards were distributed multiple times with a different finish, or altered art, or re-released many years later as anniversary items. This creates a ton of opportunity for error with many, many cards listed as something different than what they actually are because the owner has mistaken them for a different release. I review every photo carefully before I buy and weed out a lot of these mislistings early, but I keep getting burned by one card in particular: 1996 Glossy Jigglypuff from CoroCoro.
I do not even like this card. I think it’s one of the most truly hideous Pokémon cards ever released. It had two distributions in 1996 - a glossy version and an non-glossy version. It is usually paired with the “Ivy” Pikachu, which it was distributed alongside in each case.
The first one I bought was listed as glossy, but arrived as non-glossy.
The second one I bought alongside a Pikachu, which was fine as I needed both. Pikachu was glossy as advertised, but Jigglypuff was not.
The third one was also listed alongside a Pikachu. The Pikachu was undesirable quality, but the Jigglypuff looked good. I decided to spring for the duo because I really wanted to lock down this Jigglypuff. But once again, Pikachu was glossy and Jigglypuff was not.
So for the fourth time I way overpaid and spent more money than I spent on all the others combined on an expensive listing on eBay just so if it was wrong again I would have some form of communication or recourse. I am not happy about that, but at least I can say beyond any doubt that the card is correct. The cards are still coming from Japan so they haven’t arrived yet, so this wound has not really healed yet.
Four times is a lot to have to buy an ugly card that you hate. And I wasted a lot of money over the many attempts that I could have spent on other cards to finish this category, not to mention the time spent waiting for the international shipments just to be disappointed. It just feels bad. Listings on Mercari and Yahoo are only 50/50 on whether or not they’ll have a clear picture of the card, let alone a picture of the back of the card. A lot of the time it’s hard to tell and you can’t take the user description for granted. All the “please do not buy if you are nervous” disclaimers have started to get to me because now I am nervous all the time.
This is my new least favorite card. I look forward to receiving it so I never have to buy it again. Boo.