Lv. X, ex, Prime, Legend, Gold Star, not sure what the differences between these Pokemon Cards are? Read this list to understand the differences or watch my Rare Pokemon Cards series on YouTube for more information. This list will tell you the most powerful and rarest Pokemon cards out there and provide examples of what each card should look like.Summary of Special Pokemon Cards w/Pictures
This Page displays the definitions of many different special types of cards throughout the Pokemon TCG era, click on the CLICK HERE button to learn much more about each special card.
1st Edition - cards in the Pokémon Trading Card Game refer to those that are printed in the first print run of a particular set. 1st Edition cards are typically only available in booster packs for a limited period after the initial release of a particular Expansion, and are then replaced by an Unlimited Edition until the printing of that set ceases. CLICK HERE for more information.
Crystal Pokémon are a type of Pokémon found in the Pokémon Trading Card Game and are considered the e-Series equivalent of the Shining Pokémon introduced in the later Neo Expansions. Introduced in Aquapolis, Crystal Pokémon are identified by being Colorless but focus on 3 particular types energy to use in its attacks. All Crystal Pokémon have the PokéBody Crystal Type, in which the type of the Pokémon changes from Colorless to one of 3 specified types if the corresponding Energy card is placed on it, for one turn. These types are also emphasised on the card design. For example, Celebi's PokéBody and attacks focus on Grass, Water and Psychic; the colors green, blue and purple are highlighted in the card background. In Japan, these cards were released three at a time over the course of the last three e-Card Expansions, but with the hurried release of the English sets and their condensation, Skyridge featured six. In both languages, all of the Crystal Pokémon were secret cards. While Crystal Pokémon were not bound by the 1 per-Deck rule like Shining Pokémon, they still featured several Energy for each attack and were quite costly for the effects they provided. This is likely the reason for their absence in the TCG after Skyridge, and were eventually replaced by Pokémon Star in EX Team Rocket Returns, this time without the multiple Energy attacks. CLICK HERE for more information.
A holographic card is a special type of card from the Pokémon Trading Card Game. It is identical to a normal card except its image is holofoil. CLICK HERE for more information.
Pokémon LEGEND are a variant of legendary Pokémon found in the Pokémon Trading Card Game. They first appeared in HeartGold & SoulSilver as one of two replacement variants for Pokémon LV.X. Pokémon LEGEND are one or two Pokémon comprised of two different cards: the first is the top half of the card whilst the second is the bottom half of the card. Pokémon LEGEND always have LEGEND at the end of their names and, as a result, differ from their regular variants. However, both halves of the card have the same name, so only two copies of the entire card can be used in a deck. During gameplay, Pokémon LEGEND cannot be played during setup. Both halves of the card must be played to the Bench at the same time. CLICK HERE for more information.
Pokémon LV.X are a special kind of Pokémon found in the Pokémon Trading Card Game. They first appeared in the Diamond & Pearl expansion and made their final in-set appearance in the Arceus expansion. Essentially replacing Pokémon-ex, Pokémon LV.X have similar attributes in appearance to their predecessors, with a similar holographic border and similar levels of strength, as well as the same level of rarity. They also lack the major drawback of Pokémon-ex as a player will not receive two Prize cards for Knocking Out a Pokémon LV.X. They do, however, differ greatly in terms of gameplay.
Firstly, Pokémon LV.X are treated as "Pokémon Level-Up" cards as opposed to Basic Pokémon or Evolution cards. The same rules apply as with evolution, however: a Pokémon cannot be Leveled-Up in the same turn as it is played or evolved and a Pokémon that is Leveled-Up will lose all Special Conditions affecting it (though only the Active Pokémon, not the player's Benched Pokémon, can be Leveled-Up). However, a Pokémon LV.X's key trait is that it will still be able to use all Pokémon Powers and attacks usable by the Basic Pokémon or highest Stage Evolution card under it. As well as that, cards that require the player to search their deck will only allow them to choose a Pokémon LV.X if the card states "Pokémon," "Basic Pokémon or Evolution card" (this applies only to Trainer cards from the EX Series) or "Pokémon LV.X" - cards stating only "Basic Pokémon" or "Evolution cards" (such as Great Ball and Professor Elm's Training Method respectively) will not allow the player to search for a Pokémon LV.X. Pokémon LV.X cards also share the same name as the Pokémon they Level-Up from, and as such only four of either card are allowed in a 40- or 60-card deck. For instance, a player would be allowed to have two Honchkrow LV.42 and two Honchkrow LV.X in the same deck, but only four Honchkrow would be allowed in total. As well as that, because of the fact that these two cards share the same name, an effect which would remove the highest Stage Evolution card from a Pokémon would, in this example, force the removal of both Honchkrow cards, leaving only Murkrow. Pokémon LV.X were retired at the end of the Platinum era of the Trading Card Game, to be replaced in HeartGold & SoulSilver by both Pokémon Prime and Pokémon LEGEND. CLICK HERE for more information.
Pokémon Prime are a variant of Pokémon found in the Pokémon Trading Card Game. They first appeared in HeartGold & SoulSilver as one of two replacement variants for Pokémon LV.X. Pokémon Prime differ to other variant Pokémon in that they have no specific ruling or mechanic affecting their use: they are regularly classified as either Basic Pokémon, Stage 1 Pokémon or Stage 2 Pokémon and retain their regular names. The only difference, in terms of gameplay, is that they are considerably more powerful than their regular counterparts. Their card designs are also slightly different to others and, as with other considerably rarer cards, have a holographic border and name. CLICK HERE for more information.
Pokemon G: The first variant of SP Pokémon were Pokémon G, released in Platinum. Pokémon G cards are classified as "Galactic's Pokémon" (this text replaces the Pokédex data in the illustration bar) and have an of their respective Team Galactic owner in the bottom-right corner of the illustration box. All Pokémon G also have "G" at the end of their name in order to differentiate them from other Pokémon. CLICK HERE for more information.
Pokemon GL: The second variant of SP Pokémon were Pokémon GL, released in Rising Rivals. Pokémon GL cards are classified as "Gym Leader's Pokémon" (this text replaces the Pokédex data in the illustration bar in the same manner of Galactic's Pokémon) and have an icon of the Gym Leader who uses them in the bottom-right corner of the illustration box. All Pokémon GL have "GL" the end of their name in order to differentiate them from other Pokémon. The level shown on all Pokémon GL cards (excluding Pokémon GL LV.X) are the same as their Pokémon Platinum counterparts.
Pokemon 4: Released alongside Pokémon GL in Rising Rivals was another variant of SP Pokémon: Pokémon 4. Pokémon 4 cards are classified as "Elite Four's Pokémon" and have an icon of the member of the Elite Four who uses them in the bottom-right corner of the illustration box. All Pokémon 4 have "4" at the end of their name in order to differentiate them from other Pokémon (curiously, the English cards still use 四 to depict the 4). The level shown on all Pokémon 4 cards (excluding Pokémon 4 LV.X) are the same as their Pokémon Platinum counterparts.
Pokemon C: Debuting in Supreme Victors were Pokémon C. Pokémon C cards are classified as "Champion's Pokémon" and have an icon depicting Cynthia in the bottom-right corner of the illustration box. All Pokémon C have "C" at the end of their name in order to differentiate them from other Pokémon. The level shown on the majority of Pokémon C cards are the same as their Pokémon Platinum counterparts. CLICK HERE for more information.
Pokemon FB: Also debuting in Supreme Victors were Pokémon FB. Pokémon FB cards are classified as "Frontier Brain's Pokémon" and have an icon of the Frontier Brain who uses them in the bottom-right corner of the illustration box. All Pokémon FB have "FB" at the end of their name in order to differentiate them from other Pokémon. The level shown on all Pokémon FBcards (excluding Pokémon FB LV.X) are the same as their Pokémon Platinum counterparts. CLICK HERE for more information.
Pokemon Star: Pokémon Star are a type of Pokémon found in the Pokémon Trading Card Game that depict the alternate color variation of a Pokémon. First introduced in EX Team Rocket Returns, Pokémon Star saw the return of Shining/Alternate Color Pokémon after they briefly appeared back in the Neo Revelation and Neo Destiny sets. While they were still bound by the 1-per deck rule, they no longer featured multiple energy-type attacks (with the exception of Latias, Latios and Rayquaza from EX Deoxys) and often had very beneficial attacks, making them much more playable. Their card design, like that of Pokémon-ex is also unique. The character art depicts the Pokémon with portions of their body protruding outside of the character window, almost as if they are "jumping out" of the card. Various areas of the card design have golden tinges added to it, such as the corners of the attack text box and character window; the shadows of these graphics are also holographic. Like their predecessors, these cards were still difficult to obtain, the odds of finding one roughly 1 in 2 Booster Boxes, sending their prices soaring. By far the most valuable Pokémon Star are the Japanese versions of the Eeveelutions, which were originally available only through gaining EXP Points in the Pokémon Players Club. Collectors were paying upwards of $300 for each card. Their subsequent English release (and Japanese reprint) in EX Power Keepers saw the demand for Vaporeon, Jolteon and Flareon decline. δ Delta Species Pokémon are always the type that their alternate-colored form takes on the color of. For example, Gyarados ☆ δ is a Fire-type because shiny Gyarados are red. All Pokémon Star that are not fully evolved have the attack Spring Back. In Diamond & Pearl, Pokémon Star were essentially replaced by Pokémon LV.X, though shiny Pokémon were again reintroduced into the TCG with the release of Stormfront. However, they received no special rules, multi-Energy attacks or visual enhancements. Their only difference from regular cards this time around was a special "starry" foil reminiscent of early English foil treatments (in Japan), or a unique collection number with the prefix "SH" (outside Japan). This change perhaps reflects that in the Pokémon games, shiny Pokémon are no different to normal Pokémon, other than that they are a different color.
Pokemon ex: Pokémon-ex are a variant of Pokémon found in the Pokémon Trading Card Game. They first appeared in the EX Ruby & Sapphire expansion. The ex in the name stands for extra, as indicated by a wide range of attacks that have some sort of additional effect on Pokémon-ex. For example, in the EX Deoxys expansion, there is a Grumpig card which possesses an attack called "Extra Ball", which deals additional damage if used against a Pokémon-ex. The major difference between Pokémon-ex and other types of Pokémon is that when a Pokémon-ex is Knocked Out, two prize cards are taken, as opposed to the standard one. To compensate for this downside, Pokémon-ex are significantly stronger than other types of Pokémon. In the EX Ruby & Sapphire expansion, Pokémon-ex were basic Pokémon with relatively powerful attacks; however, in following expansions, they had taken on a number of other traits. Pokémon-ex may have up to two Weaknesses or Resistances and a Retreat Cost of up to five. Before the Diamond & Pearl Great Encounters expansion, Wailord ex had the title of the most HP--200 HP; although now tied with Wailord in the Great Encounters series. Previously cards had a limit of 120 HP, Pokémon-ex ignored this rule and had up to 200 HP. Additionally, Pokémon-ex are immune to certain effects: for example, their Poké-Bodies are not deactivated by cards such as Space Center from EX Deoxys, but they are also excluded from the benefits of certain cards, such as Sitrus Berry from EX Unseen Forces, which cannot be attached to them. There are also certain cards that only affect Pokémon-ex, nearly always negatively. The most well known example would be Desert Ruins from EX Hidden Legends, which requires each player to put a damage counter on each of their Pokémon-ex with a maximum HP of 100 or more between turns. Being a Pokémon-ex affects a Pokémon's name: for example, Blissey cannot evolve from Chansey ex. However, in EX Unseen Forces, ex had text allowing it to evolve from either Chansey or ex. This also occured with Scizor ex. However, Rocket's ex is only capable of evolving from Rocket's Scyther ex, not Rocket's . Many attacks, Poké-Powers and Poké-Bodies on Pokémon-ex are similar or identical in effect to those found on previous cards of the same species, allowing players to continue using popular strategies and tactics while avoiding the need to reprint cards. In Diamond & Pearl, Pokémon ex, along with Pokémon Star, were replaced by Pokémon LV.X.
A retro card is a term used to refer to special reprints of cards from the early years of the Pokémon TCG which have been included as secret cards in the Stormfront, Platinum, Rising Rivals and Supreme Victors expansions. Common among them is their origin in the earliest sets of the TCG: so far, all those which have been printed are from Base Set and Jungle or are promotional cards from the first three years of the TCG's existence. A special feature specific to these cards is their use of a gold-colored border and evolution box design, a striking contrast to other cards of the current era, which use silver-colored borders. This is, of course, a reference to the card design of the early expansions. The art on these special re-releases is done by the same artist who did the original art, in a slightly updated manner. CLICK HERE for more information.
A secret card is a card whose collection number is greater than the listed number of cards in the set, for example, numbered 101/100. Secret cards are generally rarer than the other cards in the set, and typically are holofoil cards as well. The first of the secret cards which appeared was Dark Raichu in the Team Rocket expansion. It was not included even in the Japanese version of the set, as it was made by Wizards itself. Secret cards seem to be an invention of the English version of the TCG, as all cards released as "secret" have been included in the normal set numbering in Japanese. Many secret cards are also box toppers. CLICK HERE for more information.
Shining Pokémon are a type of Pokémon found in the Pokémon Trading Card Game that depict the alternate color variation of a Pokémon. First introduced in Neo Revelation, the Shining Pokémon created quite a stir in the TCG community, both for their rarity and use of multiple Energy-type attacks. They were also bound by a special rule that allowed only 1 Shining Pokémon in a deck. Perhaps chosen because of their appearances in the Pokémon anime and Pokémon Gold and Silver, Magikarp and Gyarados were the first Shining Pokémon featured in the TCG, included in Neo Revelation as secret cards. When released in , their prices skyrocketed overseas, with collectors paying $300+ for them each. The odds of finding them in a booster pack were stated as 300:1, reflecting the chances of encountering a Shining Pokémon in the games. Their prices came down with the release of the set in English, but the cards remained difficult to obtain. Shining Pokémon appeared again in Neo Destiny and once again feature alternate-colored Pokémon. In addition, the character art was given a reflective foil treatment, making the Pokémon literally "shine" (the only exception to this is Shining Mew, which was released as a promotional card in Japan only and is holo with an additional glitter coating). Pokémon in Neo Destiny were once again secret cards and featured a unique rarity symbol of 3 stars reminiscent of the symbol used for alternate-colored Pokémon in the games. This has never been used again in the TCG. The concept of Shining Pokémon was carried over to the e-Series in the form of Crystal Pokémon in the Aquapolis and Skyridge Expansions, although actual alternate color Pokémon would not be seen in the TCG again until EX Team Rocket Returns in the form of Pokémon Star. CLICK HERE for more information.
All this information was obtained from: http://bulbapedia.bulbagarden.net/wiki/Main_Page
For more information on Pokemon in general check out this website as well.