Here are the different Pokémon TCG card rarities

Holo, Reverse Holo, Full Art, Promo... What does that mean?

Image via The Pokémon Company

If you’re getting into the Pokémon Trading Card Game for the first time and looking to open packs, it’s worth knowing how rare each card in case you want to sell or trade them in the future.

The Pokémon Company created this game around trading, so having good cards to trade and knowing how to find out if a card is rare is vital to not getting ripped off.

But how many different types of rarities are there? Honestly, there’s a lot. Here are the card rarities in the Pokémon Trading Card Game.

Common, Uncommon, and Rare

Image result for common uncommon rare pokemon card
Image via The Pokémon Company

First, we need to show you how to find out a card’s rarity just by looking at it. This is represented by a symbol located in the bottom right corner of every card. There should be a shape that indicates what rarity the card is.

Common cards are marked with a black circle, uncommon cards have a black diamond, and rare cards always have a black star. This is the basic way to tell the rarity of a card.

Rare cards, for instance, are split into multiple different kinds of rarities. There are the standard rare plain-looking cards, but there’s so much more after that.

Holo Rare

Image result for holo rare pokemon card
Image via The Pokémon Company

As the name suggests, these are rare cards that have a holo picture, meaning it shines and gleams. Only a small amount of rare cards in a set get holo variants, making them a collector’s item.

Reverse Holo

Image result for holo rare pokemon card
Image via The Pokémon Company

This is a special line of card that puts a holo gleam on every part of it except the actual picture. Any card in a set can be a reverse holo, which makes some cards, like Welder from Unbroken Bonds, more pricey.

EX/GX/V Half Art / Half Body

Image result for gx pokemon cards
Image via The Pokémon Company

These are the cards that everyone wants to be pulling from a booster pack. They’re usually some of the biggest creatures in the game and some of the hardest cards to find.

These cards can also be classed as Ultra Rare. In truth, they have a lot of different names and come with a unique mechanic that’s special to the current rotation.

Full Art / Full Body

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Image via The Pokémon Company

A different variant of EX/GX cards, Full Art or Full Body cards see the picture take over the entire card, making the writing hard to read at times.

Secret Rare

Image result for secret rare pokemon cards charizard
Image via The Pokémon Company

Each set has a number of cards attached to it. You can see the number usually in the bottom left of the card. Secret Rares, however, go beyond that number. For instance, if you have a card that reads “115/113,” it’s a Secret Rare.

Secret Rare cards can look different with the more recent Rainbow Rare variety also being put into this category. You can always tell a Secret Rare from the number, though, and they’re the most expensive cards.

Rainbow Rare

Ultra Prism Pokemon Dusk Mane Necrozma GX Hyper 163/156 Rainbow ...
Image via Pokémon Company

Added in the Sun and Moon Series, Rainbow Rare cards are some of the hardest, and most expensive, in the game. They only appear in certain times and some can sell for hundreds or thousands of dollars.

They aren’t always the best looking cards, but anyone who pulls them should know they could be sitting on gold.


Image result for holo rare pokemon card
Image via The Pokémon Company

These are specific cards given away at events. You can tell the difference by the black star and the word “promo” written on it.

Special mention: Tag Team

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Image via The Pokémon Company

Although this isn’t a specific rarity, Tag Team cards are in a league of their own. They’re the best and hardest cards to find in the game, at the time of writing. They were first released in the Team Up! packs and are a highly sought-after collector’s item.

Special mention: VMAX

Galar Pokémon and Pokémon V Arrive in Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield ...
Image via The Pokémon Company

Added in the Sword and Shield expansion, VMAX works like Mega Evolutions in that they can be placed on top of Pokémon V cards to give them new moves, abilities, and a lot of health. They can appear in a lot of different forms.

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