How to Be a Swag-izard in the TCG

Lets cover two important, pretty huge, aspects of the Pokemon TCG. First huge important thing, the national tournament. It’s coming up this weekend. Expect to play against every card in format because as time as proven crazy curveballs tend to do well. I don’t have a top pick but I think player are realizing that instead of playing to a weakness just making a deck that locks someone down is a strong option. Expect to see Acelegor/Mew and Vanilluxe/Fliptini.

KABOOM! Perfect segue to the way more fun and way more important part of this article. Have you seen these playmats that are in the pkmncast store!? If you’re new to the game lets cover some of the swag you need to be thinking about to be taken seriously.

Sleeves, they protect your cards. They have a few major brands each at different prices. My top picks are KMC, Ultrapro, and Dragonshields, in that order. When I bought my first pack of sleeves it’s a tough decision but know they won’t last forever. They get grimy the color chips or they’ll tear and you will need to invest in more. They also typically come in 50 packs so you’ll have spares. I would suggest using them for you’re top trade cards, full arts or whatever else you find to be really valuable.

Trade stuff that is worth trading for should go in a binder. The super cool looking Pokemon binders they sell at Target or Walmart are alright and will last a while. If you want a binder that won’t get wrecked, can get spilled on and beat up Monster binders or Ultrapro Pro-Binders are durable. They’re a pretty penny, around $30 but worth it in my eyes.

So your deck is sleeved, you’re ready to trade but what about your first game? Playmats are important and will save you some damage on your sleeves and cards. Also an investment and Pokemon themed playmats are hard to come by. Any of the official Play! Pokemon mats will run you $40+ some as high as $120. Our friends over at The Top Cut have printed a playmat for $35 and the beautiful SBJ has made an amazing looking playmat with Vanilluxe for $30. Remember this is what you’ll have to look at every time you play card so you want it to be something awesome. If you’re not looking for a design you can get just generic playmats for roughly $15 at most game stores.

Dice are the final key to a serious players arsenal. These will replace damage counters and the coin from the starter boxes. Pokemon requires you to use see through dice, so as cool as the red and gold marbled dice are they won’t cut it. It is also suggested that you use a different color of dice for rolling than you use for damage. Just to avoid picking up the 60 damage off of Politoad to see if moo-moo milk works. So if you have a friend and you’re both buying a container of dice maybe just trade one or two so you can both have rolling dice and avoid any mishaps. Dice sets vary based on style but are probably anywhere from $6 to $16, if you get ones with glitter.

So get out there and start shuffling. May the cards be with you and good luck to any of our readers who are headed to nationals for VGC or TCG. Don’t forget to check out Episode 082 Catch’Em If You Can, where we’ve interviewed Kyle from The Top Cut!