Since its 1996 introduction in Japan, Pokemon has captivated fans with its catch-all slogan of “pocket monsters,” appearing in everything from animated television episodes and films to stuffed animals and video games. Its popularity has even spawned a trading card game with a devoted fan base that continues to grow as more cards are released. The goal of Pokemon trading card games is to assemble a deck of 60 cards and compete by taking turns utilizing attacks and abilities to win matches. Players can purchase new cards in booster packs or by purchasing an expansion set, which contains about 100-200 cards.
A Pokemon card will typically have a picture of the titular creature and a description of its features. It will also list its moves, attack and ability stats. Its HP stat will denote how much damage the Pokemon can take before it is knocked out, while its resistance and retreat cost will determine which types of damage it can withstand and how much energy it needs to bring itself back into play.
Most cards will contain two colors of Energy, which are used to power the Pokemon’s attacks and abilities. There is a difference between Basic and Special Energy, with the latter being able to perform actions that Basic can’t, like providing multiple colors of energy at once or offering different types of Energy. Some cards will also note their weakness, resistance and retreat costs.
When it comes to designing a new set of Pokemon cards, the company has an extensive team in place to ensure that every card is balanced. Currently, there are 19 full-time employees who work on the game’s design and playtesting. A game designer will come up with the idea for a new card, commission an artist to create it and then submit it to the playtesters.
Playtesters are a diverse group of people ranging in skill level, though all of them are expected to enjoy the game and be able to use it competitively. The feedback that is received from these playtesters will be discussed in a meeting and can result in a variety of tweaks, such as lowering attack damage or increasing the HP on a Pokemon.
The game is incredibly complex, and it can take hours to complete a match. In order to win, a player must collect six reward cards from his or her rival. These reward cards can be anything from a rare, high-value Pokemon to the more common items, such as a booster pack or a special event card. Each player will have a maximum of five reward cards in their deck at any time, and they cannot include more than four copies of the same type of card. Pokemon trading cards