Hi all. I hope you are well and slowly getting back into some kind of grove. And whatever that may be, or look like these days, I am going to try to get back in to mine. So the plan for today’s post is to briefly explore trends, fads and crazes, and how they can affect collectors, collections and their resale values.
So lets just say Pokemon....what?
Okay, unless you live under a rock, you have heard of Pokémon. What began as a Nintendo Game Boy video game in the mid-1990s has since blown up into a franchise that encompasses almost everything. Video games, trading cards, animated television shows, movies, comic books, toys & so much more. The RPG, or online role-playing game, went absolutely nuts a few years back, but the Pokémon craze and underground collectors have never really gone anywhere...they were just lying in wait, like a Pokémon!
Some of the original collectors’ card sets from the late 1990s can realize a few thousand dollars. EBay or even your local auction, they already know this. A few of the rare cards can bring several thousand dollars themselves. With each new game, show or movie release, we tend to see a spike. With new fans and players, there is new found and greater demand. Further, the other odd-ball items and collectibles from the franchise are seen as cool, hip and very retro, and therefore, hot with the collectors.
Pokémon is not an anomaly. In toys and games, examples include versions based on Star Wars, Transformers, Lego, Mario Brothers, GI Joe, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. They become known as franchises as developers and creators capitalize on everything to do with them. Also, I want to be clear -- fads can cause people to collect everything and everything, and if the franchise does not survive a generation, they tend to be just that, a fad. A huge collection with no interest. Think Beanie Babies, Cabbage Patch Kids and Pogs. All equally as hot as Pokémon and Star Wars in their heyday, but now, seem a distant memory, and as collectibles, near worthless.
Now, let me tell you about the ones you probably don’t know. The cult-like following games that have never gone away, just underground. But to their collectors, they are highly prized and more valuable than their household named friends. Do you remember Magic: The Gathering? An RPG card game that is underground now but whose cards can sell for thousands and even tens of thousands for rare variants. I wouldn’t be surprised if their developer is not seeing this Pokémon craze and looking to come back with a vengeance.
The father of all these types of games, Dungeon and Dragons, is still out there as well. They have highly prized collectibles that you probably never heard of. A few game modules just sold on eBay for $400 that most people would have put out for the yard sale at $5.
With these examples, I’m just scratching the surface of what’s lurking out there, like a rare Pokémon.
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