Japanese Pokemon Cards

So I’m a complete rookie. I need a full break down on Japanese Pokemon Cards. 1. Is Japanese E Series Holo’s and Gold Stars cheaper or about the same or more expensive. I know it might vary. 2. Besides ebay or being in Japan what is some big name sites that have good stock of old back Japanese cards? 3. 1st editions are worth more like in English or less (this is normally a no brainier but I’ve heard people say unlimited is rarer) All help and guidance is greatly appreciated I have been doing some research but I’m having difficulty finding solid answers

Generally, Japanese set cards are cheaper than the English counterpart, mainly due to popularity differences. I have slowly been putting together a Japanese e series (E1-5) binder holo set over the lat year or so, and currently have 6 cards left to find. Many of them can be picked up for cheap at various auctions, but the more popular ones are more expensive to get, although still cheaper than the English versions. It is very clear that the Japanese e-series, especially E4 and E5 are a lot more rare than any of the old back sets (base to neo 4). Regarding 1st edition on Japanese cards, I don’t really care. Most of my cards are 1st edition which suggest that unlimited versions are more rare. E1 specifically did not have an unlimited print run.


Nice glad to hear that. I’m trying to find some good Japanese sites that sell singles as well so I don’t have to rely on eBay too bad. And are gold stars generally cheaper too? Some of the bigger ones like Rayquaza and Charizard seem to be going for around the same prices as here or close to it. Most of the others I’ve seen as far as gold stars were also around English price range too but I’ve only done a few quick eBay searches I’m just window shopping while I come up with more funds over the next few months. As far as E Series I noticed a vaporion holo for $15-$20 on eBay when it’s a $120-$150 card or so in English (ungraded obviously). I’m basically just learning all the ins and outs. I’d love to go directly to Japan and buy but that’s a expensive trip and I hate planes

A great place to look for Japanese cards, especially older ones, are the big second hand Japanese marketplace websites. Mainly sites like Yahoo JP and Mercari. They can be a little daunting at first sight, but as you can imagine there’s a good amount to be found on them. The vast majority of items don’t ship internationally so you’ll need to use a Japanese middleman company. There’s tonnes out there (like Buyee & Zen Market) who buy the item for you for a small fee and once they receive it, ship it to you.

For navigating these marketplace sites and their search bars, @pokemontrader made this great post of relevant search terms. Also Bulbapedia has the Japanese for each card which you can copy paste.

In terms of 1st Ed Vs. Unlimited Japanese cards, like most things it comes down to print run and availability. For the majority of sets, the unlimited cards had a shorter print run and are therefore less available than the 1st ed. Sometimes slightly more so and in other cases they can be infinitely more hard to find, which often affects the price.

That said, a lot of people may not know about the cards unlimited print run or don’t care about editions and may prefer to have the 1st Ed version anyways; so prices can vary a fair bit.


Unless you are hinting for the elusive espeon and umbreon gold star play promos, you won’t break the bank on Japanese gold stars. I personally find the grey border much more attractive. The pop report on most are pretty low considering how hard they are to find nowadays.

Do your research on each individual gold star as there isn’t a direct reflection in popularity and rarity as the English ones.

In terms of other Japanese cards, any promos with original art. I personally love the gb promos, the movie theme decks, and art that looks like the games such as trainer magazine steelix (looks like Pokémon stadium 2)

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I’m definitely looking forward to Japanese promos at one point! Especially the scream promos those are beautiful!! No idea price but whether they are $5 cards or $200 cards I’ll grab them up. First i just have to finish E series and Gold Stars. My original plan after those was level ex cards and all full arts from black and white. But those don’t seem nearly as exciting so i might go into promos after gold stars and the rest of E series