Recently, in Japan, several desirable products were released for the Pokémon Trading Card Game (TCG), but many people were unable to buy them.
A mix between a massive demand, scalpers and bots hoovering up all the stock meant that what was available sold out fast. We also saw some people trying to buy products on launch days but found themselves meant with site errors which prevented purchases.
An official announcement has now been made about this situation with a promise to increase production and stop shortages.
That announcement is available here, but it’s in Japanese. Thankfully @ToineLay, a trusted Pokémon TCG translator, has also translated the announcement:
— Toine Lay (@ToineLay) May 12, 2021
So why bring this up now especially if much of the world doesn’t care about Japanese cards? It’s because Pokémon cards the world over has been seeing massive shortages for similar reasons to the problems in Japan.
Back in February an English announcement was made making similar promises to meet demand and get cards into the hands of those who want them, but little has changed since then.
Another situation like this with promises in Japanese just ring hallow at this point. At least in Japan a temporary lottery system is being put in place to try and help things, but we highly doubt that will help and we can actually see that making things easier for bots to take advantage.
As for why the world is suddenly infatuated with Pokémon cards again, it’s a mixed bag involving the pandemic, nostalgia, celebrities and much more.
We can recommend this video by YouTube channel Frosted Caribou available here. It’s just under an hour long and can be listened to as a podcast. It goes into great detail about how and why the Pokémon TCG community. We also cover this situation in brief in this story about the February announcement.
Unfortunately knowing how we got here doesn’t help us going forward. It’s mostly kids and newcomers to the hobby who find themselves unable to get access to cards right now, which is just a sad reality.
Hopefully, with this second announcement from Japan, things will improve the world over.