The Digimon franchise has a long and rich history when it comes to the different trading cards Bandai have released over the years. Although we are all currently enjoying the Digimon TCG and the incredible cards that have come out in the last year, one of its ultimate predecessors, the Animated Series Trading Cards, had a much more humble beginning.
Each sealed booster box for the Digimon Animated Series, released in 1999, originally cost around $20 and came with 11 packs (one being listed as a bonus). A small promo poster also came with these boxes, showing the Tamers from the original Digimon series on the front and the first 54 Digimon on the back. Each pack contained seven cards, with one holo card guaranteed in every pack.
The Digimon Animated Series Trading Cards were released by Bandai and Upper Deck to coincide with the release of the original Digimon tv series. On the back of each card is a still from the anime and some information recapping the episode the Digimon first appeared in, which was similar to the Pokemon Topps cards that where also released in 1999. The Digimon Animated Series Cards were strictly for collection purposes and had no way of being played, unlike the current Digimon TCG. The set is comprised of 32 base cards with eight ‘Secret Rare’ chase cards that were often the Ultimate Digimon forms. The Digimon Animated Series Trading Cards only lasted two series and had an incredibly short print run, resulting in a number of them becoming extremely rare and valuable.
Each card in the set can be collected as a holo, which is a prismatic style that creates a zig-zag effect along the card and removes the base background. Interestingly, each Digimon has a DP score listed, which the Digimon TCG later inherited.
Series one First Edition Boosters –
First edition boosters of this set are incredibly rare and can be identified by the “Preview” stamp seen on the booster box. These boxes are considered holy grail finds for collectors, as each pack include cards with the silver prism holo ‘Preview’ stamp on them. Although several holos from the standard set have modest value, it is the stamped preview cards listed below that have become the ultimate chase cards for the Animated SeriesTrading Cards. The last 1st edition sealed booster sold for $700.
Series One First Edition Gold Stamp –
Each pack of the preview set has the chance of having a card with the gold ‘Preview’ stamp, rather than the silver one. These cards are unbelievably rare, with only 100 of each one ever being made. These can be identified by the number out of 100 on the front of the card. The rarest of these limited exclusive gold ‘Preview’ stamped cards are the Selected Kids!, Meramon and Cockatrimon cards. Finding a concrete value for these gold variations are difficult as very few of them have made it onto the market. Currently, the only ones for sale have an asking price of $30,000 plus.
Silver Stamp Cards –
The silver stamped cards from series one and two have nowhere near the same rarity as the elusive gold stamp cards but still hold respectable values when graded. A PSA 9 Veggiemon and Tyrannomon recently sold on eBay for $200 each. Ungraded, the silver stamped preview cards sell for around $20, although the 8 ‘Secret Rare’ chase cards, such as Etemon, can go for between $50 and $100.
Series two Gold Stamp Cards –
The rarest of all the Digimon Animated Series Trading Cards is the Series 2 Tyrannomon Card that has the gold stamp on it. As is the case with the series one 1st edition ‘Preview’ set, the limited gold stamp cards were intended to be very special, with only 100 created of each. Because of its ultra-rare rarity and the cards dropping off in popularity back in the early 2000s, only a handful of the gold stamp cards still exist. Only one Series 2 Tyrannomon has ever been graded with PSA, which achieved a PSA 7. This card currently has an asking price of $65,000 on eBay, although this may be overpriced as it has been up for sale since April 2021.
If you would like to learn more about Digimon’s trading card history and the game which became the foundation of the Digimon TCG we know and love today, head over to our article here. If you would rather keep looking ahead, you can check out one of the articles below covering the most recent booster sets and products.
Mathew Parkes – Ludkins Media
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