How to Play the Pokemon Card Game

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Pokemon is a collectible card game that is sold in booster packs that contain 10 cards. Buy and trade Pokemon cards with tips from a gaming specialist in this free video on card games.

Part of the Video Series: Board Games & Card Games
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Wendy, and this is Pokemon. Pokemon is a collectible card game. It's usually sold in small booster packs like this, this is called a booster pack, which has ten cards in it. The cards are put in here randomly. They put out a new set of cards every few weeks, and then there's an over-arching set that comes out every few months. But all Pokemon cards are pretty much interchangeable. You can use different sets with different cards and it doesn't matter. This means that if you buy one booster like this one, Legends Awakened, and you buy another one, you're not going to get the same cards. It's like baseball cards, it's random. Most of them are common. They'll have two uncommons and one rare, and sometimes, every three packs, there's an ultra-rare. You can also buy Pokemon in starters. This happens to be a starter. Starters are pre-constructed. They have a list of what's in the starter on the back. So this is just to get you started. It'll come with the rules, which you will not get with a booster, and a play mat, which has spaces to walk you through your first game. So that's handy to learn how to play. Younger children who play Pokemon sometimes just want to collect cards. They either want to collect their favorite characters, like Pikachu, here, or they want to collect rare or special cards. Here's a Chimchar, he's a foil, that makes him more special. Here's an EX Pokemon, they have special evolutionary powers, and so they're even more rare and special. In general, when you....so some kids don't want to play the game, they just want to collect. If you just want to collect and not play, you should just buy booster cards because you're more likely to get rare and ultra-rare cards in a booster deck that they can use to, you know, look at and trade with their friends. But if you want to play, you'll need at least one starter. To play the game of Pokemon, you need a deck. Usually it's one or two strengths of Pokemon, types of Pokemon, so just fire fighting, water, lightening. In order to play a card, you're going to need to place energy of the appropriate type. This is what an energy card looks like. This happens to be fighting energy. This one here happens to be physic, because I have a physic and fighting deck here. 'Cause Pokemons have types and they also have counter types that they are weak towards, and other types that they are strong towards. So, for instance, lightening Pokemon, like Pikachu, are weak towards ground, because ground is immune to them. And they're strong towards water. So it kind of makes sense if you think about the elements. The thing about these energy cards is, they're not exciting. They're sort of common. But the only way to get them is to buy a starter. You're not going to get them in the booster packs. So sometimes it's actually hard to get enough energy for your deck, 'cause you need about eleven or twelve of an energy per color if you have two colors in your deck. That's a pretty good mix. A deck is usually forty cards. So you draw cards and you place them, but you can only play the animals, the Pokemon, if you have the....enough of the right energy. The energy card that you're using to place your card will then by tapped, which means it's turned sideways, and then you play the Pokemon card. Pokemon cards have symbols in the corner. In the right hand corner it'll have a little round symbol with a color and a symbol. This one is yellow with a lightening bolt, so it tells you it's an electric lightening type Pokemon. On the left side of the card will be the name of the Pokemon, a picture follows. Underneath the picture, it'll tell you which evolution type it is, basic, stage one or stage two. You can't play a stage one until you've played the basic, you can't play a stage two until you've played basic and stage one, and they're all out on your table. The attacks that the Pokemon have are listed here. And the symbols next to them tell you what kind of energy that you need in order to get that attack to work. So you need to have that energy free and to tap it to use that attack. It'll either have a color and a symbol, or it'll just be gray with a star. That means any kind of energy that you have available, it doesn't matter, just two of any kind here. On the bottom of the card, on the left hand side, is the weakness of this type of Pokemon. The center is it's resistance. And the right is it's retreat cost. So if you want to take it out of battle 'cause you're afraid it's going to faint, you have to pay, in this case one energy to remove it without it fainting. In the very corner, there'll be a little symbol telling you which pack the Pokemon came out of. I mean, which set, like Diamond and Pearl Legends Awakened. And it's number in the set. There are a hundred and eight Pokemon in this set. That's about a normal, give or take, there'll be a hundred and eight different cards that you can collect in order to have a complete set. And then its rarity. This is a common card. Basics are usually common, and stage twos are the rare. Also foil are rare. When two Pokemon are...are out to fight each other, they'll do attacks. Often, the attacks depend on a simple flip of a coin and it'll tell you in the text how much damage it does, twenty or thirty five, you know, fifty. Flip of a coin. You know, heads or tails. And then it'll do attack damage. So if it does twenty, then he's down to sixty. But you need to get him all the way down to zero before he faints. When he faints he comes off and goes into the discard pile. He could also be asleep, which means that he's been used, he's attacked, which case you tap him to the side. Sometimes they get confused, which is a special attack. You put them upside down. Sometimes they're paralyzed, which is shown by the opposite of tap, since when you tap a card it's facing you. You tap it to the left, if he's paralyzed he goes to the right. And that's how you keep track. When you've run out of cards in your draw pile the game is over. The first person to run out of cards loses. And that's how you play Pokemon.

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