picking the right trading card game You can be a complicated decision. Not only which one looks the best, but also how much it costs and who plays in the region. Fortunately, the genre is more diverse than ever, and there are many different paths you can go down.
Whether you want to crack packs and see some pretty cards, want more of an anime theme, or just want to get into the first floor of a new game and discover it with others, here are the best TCGs to check out in 2023. .
flesh and blood
Best New TCG
TCG for adults
Released in 2019, this New Zealand TCG is developed and published by up-and-coming Legend Story Studios, offering a more mature fantasy genre than the likes of MTG. Combine that with high-value chase cards and a busy direct-to-play scene, and Flesh and Blood are a real force to be reckoned with in the TCG space.
- A mature, wild fantasy world.
- Complex and strategic gameplay.
- Both Constructed Play and Limited Play are supported.
- It can be difficult to find stores that sell them.
- The unique ban system can confuse new players.
- There are balance issues here and there.
Re-released in 2019, Flesh and Blood quickly emerged as one of the fantasy TCG’s biggest potential contenders for the throne of Magic: The Gathering, thanks to its collectibility, depth, strategic gameplay, and rich gameplay. individual events and tournaments.
With a darker, more mature tone than most TCGs, Flesh and Blood is violent, gory, and often grim, but still packed with the amazing world and amazing art you’d expect from a TCG. Add to that a really fun and complex game, and Flesh and Blood has become a game to watch in just a few years.
digimon card game
Best TCG for Beginners
The Digimon card game, the second TCG from Namco Bandai’s Digimon series, may be the newest addition here, but you’ve already picked up over a dozen expansions to build your dedicated player base and decks from. Whether you’re a longtime Digimon fan or just intrigued by the monsters on offer here, the DIgimon series like Tai, Agumon, Taiga, or Angoramon has plenty to enjoy without being too overwhelming for beginners.
- It’s easy to learn and has fewer card pools than other games.
- Includes all your favorite Digimon.
- It costs less than popular games like MTG and Pokemon.
- Because it’s so niche, it can be harder to find a local scene.
- Newer cards tend to be stronger (they tend to ‘power creep’).
- A hard sell if you don’t already like Digimon.
The Digimon card game has quietly built a reputation in the TCG genre since its release in 2020. A lively and exciting game full of great art, very easy to play even for beginners and a great way to dive into the community.
There are numerous starter decks to choose from to get started quickly. Or pick up a few booster packs and easily build your own deck. It is also a good choice for its low cost. You’ll get a decent collection soon.
It’s a great starting point for new TCG players, but it’s still relatively niche, so you may have to do a bit of digging to find your local scene. Fortunately, more and more local game stores are running events, so you’re sure to find someone to play with.
Best animated TCG
dddd – it’s time for a duel!
It started as a cartoon completely unrelated to the dueling monster Yu-Gi-Oh we know today! It became a hugely successful anime and TCG series. Expanded several times a year and featuring numerous specials, Yu-Gi-Oh!’s big draw is its lavish cartoon art. From deserts and cute critters to demons and robots, choose your favorite archetype and master your strategy for endless learning and mastery.
- It is cheaper than other TCGs.
- A fast and highly tactical game.
- Top notch animation art.
- Cards can be tricky to analyze.
- Very combo-heavy with lots of turn one wins.
- Smaller cards require special sleeves for protection.
Yu-Gi-Oh! is a TCG behemoth who has spent over 25 years building wild and wonderful characters, aesthetics and archetypes. No other game can eventually create a deck that combines cute animated animals, delicious desserts, and Egyptian god dragons.
Yu-Gi-Oh!’s design feels a bit outdated now and its card frames are in dire need of a visual overhaul, but it’s still the best TCG you can get if you want great anime art. Start playing fast, combo-heavy gameplay.
It is also much cheaper than other TCGs. Booster packs, crates, and even the deck itself are cheaper than similar games like Pokemon or Magic: The Gathering.
best for collectors
We have to collect them all!
Based on Nintendo’s smash hit, Pokemon TCG has been going on for over 25 years now, bringing thousands of Pokemon, Trainer, Energy, and Item cards. Perhaps the most appealing aspect of Pokemon is that you can collect them out of old cards. Many are looking for it (like the famous Shadowless Base Set Charizard) and every expansion adds new alternate arts and secret rare cards to hunt.
- Suitable for all ages.
- cool art.
- Collect lots of promos, rare cards and alternative art.
- This game is more random than other TCGs.
- Old cards can set you back hundreds of thousands of dollars.
- They can be difficult to find if in high demand.
The cool thing about TCG is that it’s as much a collector’s item as it is a game. Many people are more interested in finding and showing off rare Pokemon Trading Card Game cards than playing the game, and Pokemon will be more than happy to follow.
Along with regular cards, every Pokemon expansion is packed with secret rare cards with glorious full artwork, special holographic foiling and more, making cracking booster packs even more exciting. If that’s not enough, Pokemon regularly releases specials like the 2021 Celebration or the 2023 Crown Zenith, giving you the chance to win exclusive promo cards you won’t see anywhere else!
But be prepared to drop some serious cash if you want to partake in a massive collection. The rarest cards only come up for auction once in a blue moon, and are often even worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. Whether you want to break the pack or be the best, Pokemon is a great way to get into the trading side of the trading card game.
Magic: The Gathering
30 years old, getting stronger.
Created in 1993 by Richard Garfield, Magic: The Gathering is widely regarded as the world’s first trading card game. Playable across hundreds of sets, tens of thousands of cards, and dozens of different rule sets (called ‘Forms’), it’s a tactically dense game full of discovery and creativity.
- Tens of thousands of cards.
- An almost infinite number of strategies.
- amazing art.
- Learning can be scary.
- It’s hard to keep up with constant releases.
- can be expensive
The grandfather of all trading card games, Magic: The Gathering popularized the idea of trading cards and has remained strong for over 30 years since. Set in a bustling multiverse with worlds inspired by everything from Gothic Horror to Cyberpunk, each release takes you to new and exciting places with lavishly illustrated cards.
But more than pretty pictures, Magic is a deep and complex strategy game with virtually unlimited decks. First of all, Magic isn’t really a single game. Between formats like Standard, Pioneer, Modern, and the popular Commander, you can change the way you play and always find new ways to bring your games to life.
MTG’s long history can be intimidating for those just starting out, but if you can crack it, you’ll find yourself one of the most rewarding TCGs out there. Don’t expect it to be cheap, as Magic releases new sets every few months and catches up with new cards, so Magic itself will become a full-blown hobby!
Next: Magic: The Gathering – The Ultimate WUBRG Commander