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Beginner's guide to Pokémon Trading Card Game online

The Trading Card Game is now online. Marti Bennett takes you through it...

The year was 1999 and Pokémon trading cards were taking off in my school. Everyone was willing to trade, buy and, sadly, steal to get the cards they wanted. As it was twelve years ago I only have vague memories of these cards but I learnt how to play the Pokémon trading card game (TCG) through many scenarios and tutorials, and what I learnt I still remember to this day.

Unfortunately many people didn't learn how to play the game and only wanted to collect the cards. Because of this, in the last twelve years, I have struggled to find someone to play against. But all that is about to change.

Recently the Pokémon website has launched Pokémon TCG Online. It's a free online TCG simulator that allows you to battle online opponents, build decks, trade cards, and soon (when it is out of beta) you will be able play your friends.

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Many of you will have played games such as Pokémon Black and White but if you are new to the trading card game here are some tips how to get started.

1. Getting Started

Make your way to pokemontcg.com and make an account. After making your avatar, I would highly recommend going through the tutorials first (click on the button that says LEARN). Under this section you will be taught basic, intermediate and advanced skills that will take you through all the rules and what you need to know to be able to succeed in a match. Complete all the tutorials and you will gain an in-game achievement.

2. Play The Trainer Challenge

After learning how to play, try out your newly acquired skills against computerised opponents in the Trainer Challenge. In the Trainer Challenge there are four different leagues to complete. You can choose between three basic decks to battle with. Basic Red (fire), Basic Blue (water), and Basic Green (grass). It doesn't matter which deck you choose as you can change at a later stage if you wish.

You can also challenge yourself by changing the difficulty level in the options. I have been playing on very hard, and it's not nice!

Completing certain criteria on the trainer challenge will also unlock achievements. Winning battles will earn you trainer tokens on your Pokémon.com account which you can exchange for avatar items.

3. Play The Online Multiplayer

So you've defeated all the leagues and are feeling pretty proud of yourself. Now it's time to face real people. Currently as the game is only in Beta, the only options for multiplayer are 'Practice' and 'Ranked'. I've been playing against people in ranked mode and some players have created some really great decks and I've only won once out of about ten games.

Another problem with the game at this stage is that people disconnect from the battle when they are losing. I'm looking forward to playing my friends online when this option goes live.

4. The Real Deal

The new trading card expansion 'Black and White: Emerging Powers' has officially been released. If you purchase the theme decks or the booster packs of this set you will receive a special card with a code on it. This card allows you to unlock the theme deck you own so you can use it online.

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Comments

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  1. olrodlegacy Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 11:03

    Great choice of topic, I've always wanted to get back into the cards.

  2. Super Andre Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 12:18

    I was a person who used to steal cards off people, what we used to do with the pokeball card was show it to the person with a big bundle of cards and say pokeball captures your pokemon and then hit them out of the persons hand, and then pick them up and run off, it was the same with the team rocket card. But don't accuse me of being a theif I have changed now, you wouldn't call someone a druggy If they used to take drugs, and also i've been on the Pokemontcgonline website a few times and it's wonderful.

  3. tomutwit Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 13:14

    is funny cos its flash driven so clearly impossible to play on 3ds and likely wii.

  4. Dertdood Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 13:47

    Now, see if you can find the grass energy!

    Yes! That's grass energy!

  5. GloverMist Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 17:26

    It's funny, that wasn't actually launched recently! It's been in different beta versions for a couple of months now and has changed quite a lot. I've been following it throughout! :D

  6. Buzzthebatgirl Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 17:37

    TCGO has been out of Beta for months now, this guide is out of date. The Trainer Challange has four decks now, the last being a Basic Yellow (Electric). Going to a League is a better way to learn to play the TGC IMO.

  7. PokeMarti Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 17:59

    Pokemon TCG Online has been in Open Beta for weeks. Alowing anyone to play. Previously it was in closed beta.

    I have unlocked the Basic Yellow deck however the deck doesnt appear in the trainer challenge, only when I face real people. Maybe this will change in the future.

    My experience is that of when I played on Wednesday (and I have been playing since it launched), so is not 'out of date' unless things have changed in the last couple of days.

    Unfortunatly not everyone has a local TCG league. So the TCG online makes it more accessible for people to learn how to play, and play others.

  8. tohaker Saturday 3rd Sep 2011 at 19:39

    Its actually quite good... Im new to Pokemon TCG and its quite a good way to play and learn without spending any money!

  9. Super Andre Sunday 4th Sep 2011 at 08:38

    I've spent about Ł200 on the codes.

  10. Buzzthebatgirl Sunday 4th Sep 2011 at 15:03

    Unfortunatly not everyone has a local TCG league. So the TCG online makes it more accessible for people to learn how to play, and play others.


    I know I had to run one in Dublin as we had none there. Anyone with a postcode should support their local league, there's a decent amount of them in the UK. Five minutes fiddling with the League locator should find you one. There is a guy who comes to the Crayford League despite the fact he lives on the opposite side of London and has to travel almost an hour each way every week.

  11. mr gnome Sunday 4th Sep 2011 at 22:11

    i laughed when i saw this just because of gameburst (if you know what im talking about youre awsum) but yeah never having played the game i just started playing and really enjoyed myself.

  12. PokeMarti Monday 5th Sep 2011 at 11:42

    i laughed when i saw this just because of gameburst (if you know what im talking about youre awsum) but yeah never having played the game i just started playing and really enjoyed myself.

    *thumbs up for being gameburst fan*

  13. Kirby8 Tuesday 6th Sep 2011 at 00:29

    I knew at some point you'd do a post about this. And I was right. XD
    Love the Pokémon TGC. I used to buy cards all the time. Not so much anymore. Not because I don't love it, but because I use my money on other stuff, so only buy a random pack. I love the Pokémon TGC video game too. And this PC game I used to have that reached you the ins and outs (I loved it...even though I already knew the ins and outs! LOL)

  14. PokeMarti Tuesday 6th Sep 2011 at 08:45

    And this PC game I used to have that reached you the ins and outs (I loved it...even though I already knew the ins and outs! LOL)

    Pokemon Play It? I did write about it in my blog but it was removed.... It was a great game.

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