Getting your favourite and most valuable FF TCG cards graded is extremely appealing to collectors, especially if it is an investment for the future. With that being said, is it always beneficial to pay for the service when it comes to the FF TCG cards?
Reasons To Grade Your Cards –
People often grade their cards to prove the condition to an interested party, reassuring them that they will not receive a card that has a poorer condition than advertised. Sometimes, cards can be advertised as Mint or Near Mint in an attempt to sell them for more money. Often, it can be an honest mistake, with those selling the card misinterpreting the condition. For collectors, buying raw cards can be a gamble, especially when seeking out a specific condition. With a graded card, you know exactly what you are getting, with services like Beckett even giving sub-grades on centering, corners and edge quality. Grading always increases the value of a card because it provides absolute certainty of worth and offers the convenience of not having to get raw cards graded in the hopes they score highly.
Another important reason to get your cards graded is to verify the authenticity, especially when hundreds or thousands of pounds/dollars are at stake. When it comes to the FF TCG, incredibly rare cards such as A-001, A-002 and A-003, for example, are so valuable that forgeries can make it onto the market. Sometimes, these forgeries can be so good that from a picture alone, unfortunate buyers can be tricked out of a lot of money, especially if the right measures aren’t taken to protect the payment. Because a graded slab has a paper trail to prove its authenticity, a buyer can rest assured that they are getting the real deal. If a fake card is submitted for grading, it is simply sent back without a slab.
The final reason to get your cards graded is to protect your investment in the hopes that it will grow in value as they become more scarce. As seen in other popular TCGs, the older the game, the more valuable certain cards become. If those cards are already graded and kept in pristine condition, they may bring in a nice profit in the future.
If you would like to know the best practices for protecting your collection, check out our article – How to protect and store your trading cards.
Reason Not To Get Cards Graded –
The Final Fantasy TCG’s great card quality is both a gift and a curse when considering grading, as it means that many of them will grade pretty highly if fresh from the pack. Although this doesn’t sound like a bad thing, it does mean that high grades are not necessarily a rare thing. When looking at older games like the Pokemon TCG, getting higher grades of rarer cards is much more impressive as the cards are over 20 years old, were not always printed in the best quality and survived kids playing with them. Because the FF TCG being a relatively new game, many of those involved know how important it is to protect their cards, which means that the good condition cards vastly outnumber the poor ones. If there are plenty of 9 and 10s already on the market, it does affect the cards maximum profit potential. With that being said, for many collectors of the FF TCG, having a limited range of grades on the market doesn’t matter as long as they have their favourite cards obtained and slabbed.
If you are thinking about getting your cards graded for the sole reason of protecting them, there are other things you can do to keep them in the same condition a slab would, only at a fraction of the price. A sleeved card in a Top Loader or Card Saver will protect it and stop it from shaking around, which damages the corners over time. In fact, cards can still move around in some slabs if they are loose. If you enjoy the look and protection of a slab but don’t care about the grade, you can purchase empty slabs online.
Grading services are getting more expensive, with companies like PSA and CGC recently increasing their prices further. If the cost of grading the card is more than the card’s worth or the value it could achieve when graded, it might not make sense to do so. With this in mind, is it ever worth grading Final Fantasy cards that cost less than the service? Well, if the card has the potential to rise in value or at least benefit greatly from having a grade, yes. Also, from a personal collection point of view, having your favourite card in graded form is just a really cool thing to own and often outweighs any financial cost or value.
To learn about the cards that you should definitely consider grading, check out our article – A look at the rarest cards in FF TCG.
Taking the cost of the service out of the equation, graded cards are always worth more than their raw counterparts and come with the benefits of quality and authenticity validation. On top of that, the slabs will keep the cards in the graded condition forever, unless something really bad happens to them. Some people also prefer the look of their cards in a graded slab, which then offers inventive ways of displaying them without worrying about card deterioration.
Mathew Parkes – Ludkins Media
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