How Many Different Types of Pokémon Cards Are There in the World?
February 05, 2024

How Many Different Types of Pokémon Cards Are There in the World?

With a storied history spanning three decades, the Pokémon Trading Card Game has released hundreds of sets in English and Japanese.  These thousands of cards range from ultra rare Pokémon cards like the Trainer Gallery or VMAX lines to common cards featuring your favorite Pokémon.

So, how many Pokémon cards are there, anyway? While tens of thousands of unique cards have been released across multiple languages, pinning down an exact number is tricky. But if you want to truly catch them all, we’ll explore the specifics in this guide.

If you want to add specific cards among the thousands in existence, the #1 home for Pokémon cards in Canada is just a click away at Danireon. You can find everything from new rare Japanese Pokémon cards from the latest sets to vintage Pokémon cards from the original releases.

With that covered, how many different Pokémon cards are there?

How Many Pokémon Cards Are There in the World?

To correctly answer the question, we’ll need to look at this question across a few different criteria.

For example, how many total Pokémon cards are there in the world?

The number of individual cards printed is expected to be in the tens of billions since The Pokémon Company usually releases anywhere from 3 to 9 billion cards in a year.

As impressive as that number is, there is a more critical question for building your collection: how many original Pokémon cards are there?

How Many Original Pokémon Cards Are There?

Tracking the number of unique Pokémon cards will be easier if we look at the number of sets released.

The Pokémon TCG began in Japan with the Base Set in 1996, featuring 102 cards covering all of the original 151 Pokémon.

Since then, Japan has had over 150 unique sets, plus additional promo cards exclusive to the islands. There have also been over 100 English releases and other international languages like Korean.

Considering language differences across cards, each of the three major Pokémon card releases has 6,000 to 10,000 unique cards. This would lead to 18,000 to 30,000 unique cards across the three languages.

However, if you are more concerned with artwork or game mechanics independent of language, the total number of cards is around 15,000, accounting for region-specific releases that cannot be found in multiple languages.

How Many Types of Pokémon Cards Are There in the World Today?

Tens of thousands of Pokémon cards are a lot to fathom, but are they all the same?

Quite the opposite. TCG releases can range from powerful VMAX Pokémon cards that can turn the tide of any battle to Pokémon holo cards that are perfect for collectors wanting to show off their favorites.

So, how many types of Pokémon cards are there?

The easiest way to separate the various types of cards is to look at rarities.  Let’s use Diamond & Pearl Pokémon cards as an example.

This set was released with 130 English and 122 Japanese cards. Rarities included Common, Uncommon, Rare, Reverse Holofoil, and Holo Rare.

Cards like Diamond & Pearl Empoleon LV.X are Holo Rare, while Diamond & Pearl Buizel is Common.

Over the years, the rarity system has been tweaked with other rarities like Secret Rare, Hyper Rare, and more. Different types of cards have emerged in recent sets that add additional features even if they still fit within the rarity system.

For example, trainer gallery cards add full-art images of trainers and their iconic Pokémon from the anime or video game series. Due to their limited releases, these rare Pokémon trainer cards are highly sought after, making them quite valuable if you pull them in a booster pack.

There are also game-mechanic-specific cards, like VMAX or VSTAR Pokémon cards, that offer unique ways to battle.

How Many Total Pokémon Cards Are There?

Okay, but how many Pokémon cards are there floating around the world?

Due to the TCG's sheer popularity, determining an exact number is almost impossible. The Pokémon Company releases billions of cards per year worldwide. It’s difficult to say how many of those cards are actively on the market compared to those hiding away in an attic or shoebox.

However, the better number to focus on as a collector or battler is the number of unique cards. Tens of thousands are manageable if you want to catch them all!

How Many Radiant Pokémon Cards Are There?

Radiant Pokémon cards were introduced in the Astral Radiance expansion. They incorporate a beloved mechanic of Pokémon games: Shinies.

Shiny Pokémon have alternative color schemes, and these cards feature practical attacks and abilities that make them helpful in battle.

Each language has 16 total Radiant cards, ranging from Japanese Radiant Greninja to Radiant Tsareena.

How Many Pokémon Illustrator Cards Are There?

Illustrator cards rank among the rarest finds in existence. The Pikachu Illustrator only has 18 copies, stemming back from a contest in 1998. Copies of the card have sold for up to $5,000,000.

No other official Illustrator cards have been released since then, making them a historic part of the TCG’s history.

How Many Gold Pokémon Cards Are There?

Gold Pokémon cards are slightly more common than Illustrator cards. They are usually released as Secret Rare or promotional cards, starting with Pokémon like Mewtwo, Lugia, and Celebi.

So, how many Pokémon cards are there in this category?

There are around 50 of these cards in existence, with each one featuring full art and an all-gold design.

Now that you know how many total and original cards exist, let’s help you add your favorite Pokémon and trainers to your collection.

Tips on Starting or Bolstering Your Pokémon Card Collection

All collections start somewhere. Whether you want to duel other players under the TCG mechanics or collect every Eevee Pokémon card released, you’ll want to use these tips to collect new cards efficiently.

Identifying Your Collecting Goals: Completeness vs Specialty

To begin, you’ll need to ask yourself a few questions. What are your goals in collecting Pokémon cards? 

Do you want to build battle-capable decks? Perhaps you want to collect the most cards possible, budget permitting? Or you could only focus on ultra-rare cards to show off to fellow collectors.

Getting a good idea of what you want from the Pokémon TCG will help steer your research in the right direction.

Researching Pokémon Card Sets and Metas

Let’s look at two sets of goals you may want.

First, let’s say you are a fan of one specific Pokémon. We’ll use Seviper, a common Pokémon once wielded by Team Rocket’s Jesse in the Anime.

Using the search function on Danireon, we find twenty different Seviper cards available. These cards range from Common options to the Ultra Rare Hidden Fates Seviper.

If you just wanted a couple of copies of Seviper before moving on to another Pokémon, you could choose among the many options for cards that caught your eye. On the other hand, if you were looking for rare or promo versions of your favorite Pokémon, you may want to invest in booster packs if you cannot find any singular copies.

Let’s switch gears from the Seviper example. Another goal you may be aiming for is to build a powerful deck that can be competitive in the meta.

In that case, you should begin your research on various community platforms. You can visit places like YouTube, the Danireon Discord, or your local Pokémon TCG Shop to get an idea of which decks dominate the meta.

These resources will help you build a decklist while shopping or pulling packs.

Starting with Starter Packs, Booster Boxes, and Theme Decks

Once you’ve researched and know what you are looking for, we recommend starting your collection with Pokémon booster packs, boxes, and decks. 

How many Pokémon cards are there in a pack?

Starter packs and booster packs will come with ten or eleven cards depending on the set, allowing you to build your collection and even coming with a chance of rare cards.

Booster boxes take it to another level. If you are wondering how many packs are in a booster box, you can find over thirty packs in one box. There are plenty of chances at ultra-rare cards that will either fully satisfy your wishlist or can be traded to put toward the single you want.

If you want to buy Pokémon booster boxes in Canada, Danireon has you covered. You can find booster boxes from several sets across eras, including elite trainer boxes, also known as ETBs, that can help you build a deck.

In addition to boosters and Pokémon ETBs in Canada, we recommend checking out theme decks at Danireon. These decks come with ready-to-play decks and even feature rare cards that are hard to find. For example, the Deluxe Meowscarada EX deck also features a Radiant Alakazam as part of the 60-card offering.

Expanding Your Collection With Trades, Auctions, etc.

After opening your booster packs and pre-made decks, you likely have tweaks you want to make to your collection. The best way to sell unwanted cards and find the singles you want is on the secondary market.

Danireon is the best source of Pokémon singles in Canada. Thanks to our community, we constantly buy and sell cards, keeping our inventory fresh with common, rare, and ultra-rare cards at market prices.

In addition to retailers, you can join Pokémon TCG communities in-person or online, like the Danireon discord, which may allow you to trade cards with fellow collectors.

Preserving and Organizing Your Pokémon Card Collection

Keeping your cards in pristine condition is essential, especially if you plan to sell them later on. We recommend investing in a good Pokémon card binder or a set of protective sleeves to store your precious cards away from direct light and moisture.

The best binders for Pokémon cards are usually Toploader binders, which make learning how to organize Pokémon cards easy.

Once you have your shopping list and know where to find the cards you want, you can start your journey by finding a retailer!

Where Can You Find All the Different Types of Pokémon Cards in Canada and the US?

Across North America, there is no better place to buy Pokémon Cards than here at Danireon.

From exclusive Japanese Pokémon cards to Charizard Pokémon cards across the decades of TCG set releases, our inventory has everything you need to build your collection.

We founded Danireon out of our love for the Pokémon TCG, and we are proud to be the #1 resource for collectors and battlers across Canada and North America. We’ve built a strong community and a reputation for authentic cards and excellent customer service.

Our selection includes hard-to-find singles, vintage packs, and Pokémon card pre-orders for English and Japanese releases.

If you’ve wondered where to sell Pokémon cards, Danireon has you covered. We maintain a buy list that allows you to sell unwanted cards back to us at reasonable prices rather than trying to deal with cumbersome auction marketplaces like eBay or Amazon.

And if you aren’t quite sure where to begin your journey, you can reach out to our team or join our free Danireon Discord to become a part of the friendly and helpful community.

Wrapping Up Our Guide to How Many Pokémon Cards Are There to Collect

While tens of thousands of cards exist, building your collection starts with choosing an initial goal to focus on. From searching for one specific Pokémon to investing in a few starter decks, there are several ways to make your Pokémon TCG journey your own.

If you enjoyed our guide on how many Pokémon cards are there in the world, check out our blog! We consistently release articles on the world of the Pokémon TCG, including Japanese Pokémon card values, how to tell if a Pokémon card is fake, how to pre-order Pokémon cards, and DIY Pokémon card binders.

Otherwise, starting or growing your collection is best accomplished with the help of Danireon. We have all the singles and booster packs you need to find the cards you’re looking for. Browse our site to research your favorites, or join our free Discord to learn more about the magical world of the Pokémon TCG!