A Holographic History Of The Pokémon TCG: Gold Secret Rares
Over the years, the Pokémon TCG has featured many different patterns used on their holographic cards. Some patterns lasted for years, while others had short stays, making them markers for their short time in the franchise. In this next installment of A Holographic History of the Pokémon TCG, let's take a look at a style of card that has appeared in multiple forms throughout the eras: Gold Secret Rare Trainers.
The Gold Secret Rare Trainers of past Pokémon TCG eras have little in common with those of today. Above, you can see the popular VS Seeker Gold Secret Rare Trainer from the Dragon-themed set Pokémon TCG: XY – Roaring Skies. Back then, it was common for sets to have just a few Secret Rares per set. This made sets easier to complete, with the Full Arts often being chase cards. I did find it personally a bit underwhelming, though, when these Trainer cards were the only Secret Rares of a set. Looking back, they are beautiful, though. They have gold textured foil on the border and a textured, silver Poké Ball on the text block area of the card.
After the XY era wrapped, the Sun & Moon era kicked off and introduced a new style of Gold Secret Rare Trainer cards that remain active in the Pokémon TCG today as we are in the Galar-focused Sword & Shield era. These cards give Gold Secret Rare Trainers the Full Art treatment with the entire card rendered in textured gold. Instead of dark inky lines for the illustration, golden lines that sparkle with a rainbow prism when hit by light make up the card's lines.
Both Sun & Moon era sets and Sword & Shield era sets have, to me, the opposite problem of XY sets. There are so many Secret Rare cards that Trainer Item cards end up being way less desirable when the other options feature Pokémon or human characters. These types of cards are definitely more for players than collectors.
There is a style of Gold Secret Rare Trainer, though, that I find beautiful and more desirable for collectors than the Items. The Gold Secret Rare Trainer Stadium cards are similar in style to the items but tend to be more illustrative with a wider variety of colors, as you can see here below with this Crystal Cave from Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield – Evolving Skies.
Stay tuned for the next episode of A Holographic History of the Pokémon TCG, where I will cover Gold Shiny Pokémon.