One of the rarest Pokémon cards in the world just sold at auction for a breathtaking amount of money.
A Pokémon Illustrator card was sold for $54,970 at an auction held by Heritage Auctions over the weekend. Only 39 Pokémon Illustrator cards were ever released to the public, and this one happened to be a 9 out of 10 on the Professional Sports Authenticator scale — near-perfect mint condition.
Here's what the super-rare card looks like:
Image: heritage auctions
Before you start thumbing through your old Pokémon card collection to see if you have an Illustrator yourself, the card was never in circulation — the 39 cards that exist were handed out as prizes for a three different Pokémon illustration contests held by CoroCoro Comic in the late-'90s.
The text on the card, written in Japanese, translates to:
We certify that your illustration is an excellent entry in the Pokémon Card Game Illust Contest. Therefore, we state that you are an Officially Authorized Pokémon Card Illustrator and admire your skill.
The card itself features a Pikachu holding a pen and a brush with splashes of paint and illustrations behind him. It is one of a very small number of Pokémon cards with two rarity stars (in the bottom right corner of the gray border) and the only card to ever have a pen symbol in the bottom right corner.
Pokémon artist and designer Atsuko Nishida designed the Illustrator card. She illustrated a huge number of Pokémon cards over the years and has credits on many Pokémon video games and animations.
Here's what less-rare Pokemon cards are worth: