Games We Love (11/16/22) - Pokemon Games

Games We Love (11/16/22) - Pokemon Games

Games We Love - A Deep Dive Into Under-Appreciated Graded Video Games

Games We Love

November 16th, 2022 - Staff writer Lauren Sisselman discusses a handful of graded games that tell a compelling story or conjure feelings of nostalgia. This week covers our favorite graded Pokemon Games:


The worldwide phenomenon known as Pokemon may be as synonymous with trading cards as it is with video games today, but the series initial launch domestically was the release of Pokemon Red and Blue for the Nintendo Gameboy in 1998. Children and adults alike were engrossed by the strategic role-playing game, which encouraged players to catch all 150 different Pokemon creatures. Players could initially pick from three starter Pokemon and could evolve the creatures over a period of time, power-ups and, battles won. Since being introduced, Pokemon has evolved to include dozens of video games, cartoons, merchandise, and theme park attractions. The Pokemon Corporation now has close to 1,000 different Pokemon for players to catch.

Since Pokemon Red and Pokemon Blue were released, the video games themselves have sold over 440 million copies worldwide. Pokemon is now the third largest video game franchise of all time – just trailing Mario and Tetris. Nintendo is responsible for many of the world's most beloved video games and yet again seemed to reinvent the wheel with the release of Pokemon Red and Blue.

The first-generation trading cards and games are extremely popular with collectors. Finding video games in high grades can be a challenge, but Pokemon fans know the hunt is a part of the fun! We have a number of high-grade Pokemon games ready to be caught and added to your collection today!

WATA Graded Pokemon Red for Game Boy WATA Graded Pokemon Blue for Game Boy

Pokemon Red & Pokemon Blue

The two iconic games that started it all! Pokemon Red features the mighty Charizard against a red background, while Pokemon Blue features the equally formidable Blastoise. Players can pick from Charmander, Bulbasaur, or Squirtle, and from there can capture and evolve additional Pokemon on their journey. The game introduced many of the best-known Pokemon in the franchise, including the iconic Pikachu. Another vantage point the game gave players was the ability to trade Pokemon with other players in real life.

These games are still as engrossing as they were the day they came out, and are celebrated by video game fans the world over. Worldwide sales topped 31 million units sold combined, earning Pokemon Red and Blue the title of “Best-selling RPG of all time” by IGN. The game is still played today by retro video game fans, and is one of the most sought after games of all time.

This perfectly matched 9.0 A++ WATA graded early print pair of Pokemon Red and Blue both feature Sandshrew the reverse of the game box and are an excellent middle ground of higher grades and immaculate seals, without breaking the bank for a 9.6 or 9.8 graded example.

WATA Graded Pokemon Pinball for Game Boy Color

Pokemon Pinball

Collecting pinball machines and anything related to the game is a hobby of mine. While most people may balk at collecting large, cumbersome machines, there are pinball-based video games – which are easier to store! While there is no physical Pokemon pinball machine from manufacturers like Stern or Jersey Jack, Nintendo still released their own version of a pinball game. In 1999 Nintendo released Pokemon Pinball, as a fun tie-in to Pokemon Red and Blue. Much like a real pinball machine the player's objective is to rack up points on either a Red or Blue table. Players also have a chance to collect all 151 Pokemon for their Pokedex! This game was popular with fans, and even garnered a sequel based on the Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire games.

This sealed copy graded 9.6 A+ by WATA is beautiful. The box features no damage to the color whatsoever, so this cover is as bright as it was the day it hit shelves. Featuring the iconic Pikachu, the cover also has a basic pinball table surrounded by a few other Pokemon – such as Ditto and Meowth. Pokemon Pinball even has a rumble pack included with the game, a feature that was innovative for a handheld game at the time. This Gameboy Color game is a personal favorite, and seeing it in such a high grade is a treat! If you’re a pinball, Pokemon, Nintendo, or Gameboy Color collector, this game is perfect for you!

WATA Graded Pokemon Brilliant Diamond for Nintendo Switch

Pokemon Brilliant Diamond

Based on the Pokemon Diamond and Pearl games for the Nintendo DS, both Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl were released to celebrate the twenty-five year anniversary of the Pokemon franchise. The title was one of the biggest launches ever for the Nintendo Switch and sold 6 million copies worldwide within a week of release. As of summer 2022, Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl have sold over 14 million copies worldwide. And much like the very first Pokemon video game Red and Blue, players are still able to take Pokemon on the go thanks to the Switch’s portability.

This sealed copy graded 9.8 A+ would be a stunning addition to any collection! 9.8 grades are as close as one can get to a perfect grade – making this the highest-graded Pokemon games on the site. Traditional Pokemon RPG games are the backbone of the franchise, and Pokemon Brilliant Diamond is no exception. If you’re a Pokemon completionist or collect Nintendo titles, RPGs, or Switch games, this is perfect for you!

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Looking For More General Information on Graded Games?

· If any of the terminology used in this guide was confusing or new to you, please refer to our convenient glossary of terms here.
· Need more information about graded games in general? Check out this intro to the different types of certified video games here.