The Pokémon trading card game (TCG) is currently experiencing a renaissance of sorts with higher than ever interest in the hobby sparked by celebrity involvement, the 25th anniversary, lockdowns and a host of other factors. The problem is that, if you just want to crack open some booster packs, you may not be able to.
The older surviving and unopened booster packs which many remember from their childhoods now go for insane prices. The “cheap” option is spending around $1 000 on individual boosters which usually end up producing cards worth a handful of Dollars.
Those who want to simply walk into a store and buy a newer booster pack may also find themselves at a loss. The COVID-19 pandemic, scalpers and bots have all resulted in a massive shortage of cards you can actually buy.
Thankfully there is now a kind of replacement for those seeking the pseudo gambling rush of cracking packs. PokemonCard.io, a TCG database and resource site, has released the alpha version of its Pack Opening Simulator.
Using the simulator is rather easy: choose the English expansion you want to open and click through. You’ll be presented with the cards faced down and then you can either flip them individually or all at once with a button.
If this sounds familiar it’s because the idea exists for many other types of randomised lots. In the announcement of the simulator it is pointed out that the hopes of this software is to match up with an in depth version done for Yu-Gi-Oh!. Outside of card games you can even open up weapon cases in a similar fashion.
What makes the implementation from PokemonCard.io is the support for all the English TCG expansions. We’ve seen these kind of simulators pop up before but they usually only cover the oldest sets like Base and Jungle. To offer every set, right up to the recently released Shining Fates is a real accomplishment.
As mentioned the simulator is in very early development. The call it out to provide feedback as well as any information towards card odds and ratios for each expansion. You can find the button to provide this feedback at the top of the simulator page.