A lot of people wonder whether Pokemon booster packs are genuinely random, or whether you can predict what will be loaded into that pack. That is what we want to take a look at here.
So, are Pokemon booster packs random? Yes, they are! Well, most of the ones on the market, at least. While the cards that appear in the boosters will only ever be ones from the set, you never know what you will get until you open it. All you know is that you will get 6 common cards, three uncommon, and a rare.
Let’s go into this in a little bit more depth, shall we?
Are All Pokemon Booster Packs Random?
Yes and no.
There are a few promotional packs e.g. those that are often given away with Happy Meals from McDonalds that are not random. However, the vast majority of booster packs are random.
Each booster pack will offer the following:
- Six Common Cards (marked with a circle)
- Three Uncommon Cards (marked with a diamond)
- One Rare card (marked with a star)
At least one of these cards will be a foil card. Every single card in a set can appear as a foil, including the commons. Although, do bear in mind that foil non-rares are relatively new. So, do not expect to buy a booster pack from a decade or so ago and find regular foils in there.
If you had an older booster pack, then there will be an 11th Energy Card. These are not included in booster nowadays unless they are special energy cards or holos.
All of the cards will be random. However, they will only ever be cards from that particular set i.e. you are not going to find a Pokemon Base Set card in a Sun ; Moon Booster.
Do bear in mind that this information will only apply to booster packs created by The Pokemon Company. We cannot say how repacking companies will put together their boosters i.e. you can sometimes find them at the Dollar Store.
Are Pokemon Booster Packs Worth It?
It depends on why you are buying a booster pack.
If you are planning on buying booster packs with the intention of scoring yourself a certain card then, no, booster packs are not going to be worth it. They are going to be a complete waste of money. It is better to be buying the specific card that you want in this situation.
If you plan on buying booster packs purely for the thrill of opening booster packs or, perhaps, getting a card collection started, then booster packs are absolutely worth it! You may not always get the card that you want, but there are few thrills greater than flicking through a freshly opened booster pack and seeing what cards you have managed to score yourself.
Are You Guaranteed a Secret Rare in a Booster Box?
No. But the chances are high.
On average, you should be able to pull a Secret Rare per booster box that you open. However, this is just an average.
There are some booster boxes with no secret rares, while there are others that may have 3 or 4 secret rares. There is no way to predict what you will be getting until you open up that booster box. This is why you should never buy booster boxes purely with the intention of getting secret rares.
While we can tell you that you probably will pull a secret rare whenever you open up a booster box, we cannot guarantee it! This is because The Pokemon Company tries to ensure that their booster boxes are as random as possible.
How Do I Know if My Booster Packs are Rare?
We are going to level with you here; most booster packs are not actually that rare. The Pokemon Trading Card Game has pretty much always been popular as a game. The first edition base set wasn’t as popular but, once the TV show really started to take off, Pokemon cards have been almost constantly popular.
The thing is that Pokemon Trading Card Game is a game that is mostly played by children. This means that they are going to tear their booster packs open as soon as they receive them. Very few people actually hold onto their packs and don’t open them, particularly from the earlier sets.
This means that any set that is more than a few years old is probably going to be rare if you do not open the booster packs at all. If Pokemon is no longer printing a particular set, then you have a rare booster pack.
Of course, the rarest packs are those that were never actually sold as individual boosters i.e. you could only purchase them in boxed sets. Shining Legends is probably the most recent example of this. Pokemon Generations came ever so slightly before this.
The rarest packs come from the earliest days of Pokemon if you have not opened the booster. For example, a Base or Jungle set booster could easily command $100+ if unopened. If the base set has a black triangle on it, this indicates a misprint. They are the rarest boosters you can find, and they can easily sell for $500+ unopened.
The value of booster packs on eBay should always give you a decent idea of how rare your pack is.
What Pokemon Booster Packs Should I Buy?
It depends on why you are buying booster päcks.
If you are buying booster packs with the intention of actually playing the game, then you should look at what is currently in the ‘standard’ version of the game. It will normally be the last few expansion sets for Pokemon.
The Pokemon Company will maintain a list of the Pokemon website, so it shouldn’t be too tough to find out this information. We can’t tell you what the standard sets here are because it is something that is going to be changing every few months.
If you are looking to chase a certain card, while we do not recommend that you actually buy booster packs for this you should, of course, buy booster packs for the set that you are looking for the card in.
If you are planning on investing in booster packs in the hope that they go up in the future, then most booster packs should be fine. The earliest booster packs (particularly Base Set and Jungle) should be able to command the highest price in the future due to the nostalgia factor of them.
However, most sets should go up in price as time goes on assuming that they are not opened. We cannot stress that enough.
Suppose you are looking for booster packs as an investment. Take Pokemon Evolutions, for instance. it only came out a few years ago, but the prices for an unopened pack are 10-20x higher than they used to be. Open that pack, and you may get a few dollars at most.
To see the current price of the Pokemon Evolutions Booster Box, click here and check it out on Amazon.
Pokemon booster packs are entirely random. Well, most of them are. This is why booster packs maintain their value pretty well until they have been opened. This is because you never know what you are going to be finding in that pack!
If you want to check the value of your Pokemon booster packs, then sites like eBay are a brilliant bet. Your local store isn’t.
Remember, if you have an unopened booster, make sure you don’t open it!