From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
| Pokémon Trading Card Game Online|
Logo of Pokémon Trading Card Game Online
|| Basic info
|| PC, Mac, and iPad
|| 1-2, with unlimited in chat
|| Electrified Games, Sleepy Giant Entertainment, Plexipixel, Inversoft
|| The Pokémon Company International
| Part of:
|| Generation IV/V/VI misc
|| Release dates
| North America:
|| March 24, 2011|
|| March 24, 2011|
|| March 24, 2011|
| South Korea:
Pokémon Trading Card Game Online (sometimes referred to as Pokémon TCG Online, PTCGO, or TCGO) is a downloadable game, and the first Pokémon game of the MMOTCG (massively-multiplayer online trading card game) genre. The game was originally released as a browser-based game in March 2011 before being relaunched as a downloadable game in 2012 for the PC and Mac and for iPad in 2014. The game officially emerged from open beta testing in February 2015, but it continues to be refined and improved upon on a continual basis. The game is based on the Pokémon Trading Card Game or TCG aspect of the Pokémon franchise and follows the same rules. The game is also free to download and use. Experience with the trading card game is not required. It is accessible to both beginners and experienced players alike. It is also intended to be used by both children and adults. Players do not need to purchase physical Theme decks or Booster packs from a store in order to play. Players are provided with everything they need to begin playing, and there are multiple means of earning new cards and other rewards as the game is played.
Guided Story Plot
In order to help new players of all age levels learn the mechanics of the game and so as to not overwhelm them with the complexity of the full game right at the beginning, all players are by default directed through a set of in-game Tutorials and then the initial set of Matches in the Trainer Challenge before all game features are unlocked.
Upon logging into the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online, players start their adventure at a virtual "Game Store", where Trainers Zach and Ella welcome them. Players begin by playing through two Tutorials with a simplified BW Basic Blue Starter Theme deck and its Water type Pokémon before slowly unlocking a XY Basic Yellow Theme deck and its Lightning type and Colorless type Pokémon with five additional computer-controlled Trainers, each with different Deck types and often with attacks that apply Special Conditions. Advancement through the Tutorials does not require players to Win a given Match.
Next, players compete against another set of computer-controlled Trainer characters from the Trainer Challenge. Players are provided with four Starter Theme decks, each representing one of four Starter Pokémon types — Fire , Grass , Lightning , and Water . Player proceed sequentially through the Trainer Challenge as they Win matches in three in-game "Leagues". The full set of features in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online is not unlocked until players have won a match against the first several Trainer Challenge Trainers in the Gold League. Once the full feature set is unlocked, the Trainer Challenge may be pursued at the player's own pace or bypassed entirely.
Bypassing Training Period
Players already familiar with the game may bypass this directed phase by disabling the "New User Experience" under Options.
Many in-game Pokémon Trading Card Game Online features rotate or change on a recurring basis:
There are five primary Play Modes available. These are Trainer Challenge, Versus Mode, Tournament Mode, Tutorial Mode, and Quick Match. Additionally, Friend Battle and Play Testing are available under Friends in the Social menu and the Deck Manager respectively.
In the Trainer Challenge, players face various computer-controlled Trainer characters using only Theme decks, including Online-exclusive Theme decks featuring Starter Pokémon Tepig and Fire-type Pokémon , Snivy and Grass-type Pokémon , and Oshawott and Water-type Pokémon from the Black & White Series (BW Basic Red, BW Basic Green, and BW Basic Blue), the XY Basic Yellow Lightning type Online-exclusive Theme deck unlocked in Tutorial Mode, those unlocked by Redemption codes from code cards, and those purchased with Trainer Tokens or Gems from the in-game Shop. Code cards are obtained through purchase of physical Theme decks from the Black & White Series onward.
Players battle in three "Leagues": Gold League, Platinum League, and City Championship. Players have the option of adjusting the match difficulty between: "Easy", "Medium", and "Hard" (see Earning stars). Changing the difficulty setting changes the composition of the opponent's deck. Players must defeat a given Trainer in a specific spot or position once before unlocking the next Trainer position. Players must also defeat a given league once before unlocking the next, starting with Gold League and ending with City Championship. Unlike more traditional Pokémon Trading Card Game Tournaments such as the multi-player Tournament Mode, defeat on the part of players in these Trainer Challenge leagues does not result in players changing their standing. In other words, players may pickup right where they left off rather than start all over again.
Winning matches in the Trainer Challenge earn players Trainer Challenge points that apply toward each Trainer in a unique league position. Trainer Challenge points then Earns stars with 1, 3, or 10 Trainer Token or Booster pack awards.
There are also 12 circles at the bottom of the "Select A Trainer" screen for a Trainer Challenge match, which correspond to each of the 12 Trainers in that league. By clicking on the corresponding circle, players may quickly select that Trainer in that specific spot or position. Some Trainers appear more than once in a league. Some do not appear at all. A padlocked circle means that the corresponding Trainer has not yet been unlocked. An open grey circle indicates that the Trainer has been unlocked but has not been beaten with any of the player's Theme decks. A dark green check mark over a grey circle means that the Trainer has not yet been defeated with the player selected Theme deck. A light green check mark indicates that the Trainer has already been defeated with the player selected Theme deck. Each Theme deck has its own set of dark green and light green check marks for each Trainer position in each league.
Players must defeat 7 Trainers with the same Starter Theme deck (except for the XY Basic Yellow Theme deck) to fully unlock all the cards in that deck. Certain cards are replaced automatically with each Trainer beaten. Beating the same Trainer in a different position in a league or in a different leagues counts toward the 7 successes. Beating a Trainer in the same position in a league more than once does not count toward the 7 successes.
- NOTE: The XY Basic Yellow Theme deck is unlocked in Tutorial Mode.
- NOTE: The October 2, 2013 update retired a feature that also gradually unlocked redeemable or purchased Theme decks over the course of 11 successful wins as described above. All redeemed or purchased Theme decks are now fully "unlocked" immediately upon redeeming or purchasing them in the in-game Shop.
Players take on other players in a Random Battle with one of four Play types or Deck formats (Theme, Standard, Expanded, or Unlimited) and a deck appropriate to the selected Play type.
Formally an option under Ranked Battle and Opponent Types. This feature allows players to play against another randomly selected online player. Players earn a single Trainer Token for each match played ("Expert Matchmaking Reward"), provided they have met minimum playtime requirements, plus 2 Trainer Tokens if they win a match versus a player who was ranked by the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online as having an "Advantage" based on player/deck play history ("Game Advantage Upset Reward"). Additionally, players are give the chance to spin the Bonus Wheel, which provides an opportunity to receive Trainer Tokens, Tournament Tickets, or a Mystery Box reward. Trainer Tokens and the Bonus Wheel are provided to both players regardless of the outcome of the match.
Winning a match also earns players Versus Points, which advance players along a Versus Ladder reward system.
Players select from four Play types, also known Game type or Deck format:
- Only pre-constructed Theme decks are allowed in this play type. Apart from the Starter themed Online-exclusive Theme decks, Theme decks are obtained by either using Redemption codes or by purchase with Trainer Tokens or Gems in the in-game Shop.
- Only decks composed entirely of cards from expansions or sets officially sanctioned for Play! Pokémon events for the Standard format are allowed in this play type. The list of allowed expansions is updated with a game patch shortly after as the official, annual Rotation is announced. Expansions are added to the Standard format as they are released (typically four a year), and the oldest legal expansions are rotated out of the Standard format on an annual basis. The Standard format was previously called the Modified format.
- Only decks composed entirely of cards from expansions or sets officially sanctioned for Play! Pokémon events for the Expanded format are allowed in this play type. This format was added in the 2014-2015 season to allow a greater number of expansions than the Standard format but not be as unpredictable in card combinations as the Unlimited format. The list of allowed expansions is updated with a game patch shortly after as the official, annual Rotation is announced. Expansions are added to the Expanded format as they are released.
- Any deck composed of cards currently available in the game are allowed in this play type (including Expanded format decks, Standard format decks, and Theme decks). Currently, only HeartGold & SoulSilver, Black & White, and XY sets and their expansion are available in the game.
Entry into Tournaments versus other players require either Tournament Tickets or Trainer Tokens. Players may use one of four Deck formats or Play types (Theme, Standard, Expanded, or Unlimited), though not all Deck formats are always available. Playing in tournaments with other players provide the opportunity to gain at least a single Trainer Token and a spin on the Bonus Wheel at the end of each match as well as the opportunity to earn Trainer Tokens, Tournament Tickets, Booster packs, and Tournament Chests based on player placement in a given tournament.
Each tournament is composed of three-round single elimination matches between 8 players. Upon selecting a Deck format with either a Tournament Ticket or Trainer Token entry requirement, players are placed into a queue until 8 players join. Once that queue is full, the tournament will begin and a new queue will be created. The maximum duration of a tournament is 1 hour and 18 minutes with up to 25 minutes minutes per match (12 and ½ minutes per player) and one minute between rounds.
Continuously running tournaments currently offer three Deck formats: two require a Tournament Ticket entry fee and one a Trainer Token entry fee. The exact Deck formats and entry fee costs rotate on a weekly basis on Mondays at 7:00 PM UTC (Coordinated Universal Time or Greenwich Mean Time). On weekends, one of the two Tournament Ticket entry fee tournaments is increased to a 6 Tournament Tickets cost instead of 4 but also offers increased placement rewards.
Tournament special events
The first non-trial Tournament special event officially premiered on February 5, 2015 as a weeklong tournament in which players battled in all four Deck formats for special themed rewards based on Team Magma and Team Aqua from the Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire video games. Other Tournament special events occur from time to time.
Entry costs and rewards vary widely for Tournament special events. Continuously running tournament entry costs and rewards are standardized:
- Main article: Tutorial (TCGO)
After being welcomed to the "Game Store", players face Zach and Ella in two Tutorial Pokémon Trading Card Game matches designed to teach players the basics of game play. Players advance regardless of whether they win or loose a match. If players "Play as a Guest" and complete the initial two Tutorials, they will be presented with a full match against a random computer-controlled Trainer from the Trainer Challenge. Players may repeat but will not advance beyond this random battle stage. Players will, however, be encouraged to create a Pokémon Trainer Club "User Name" and "Password" after each of these matches.
- Pokémon Trainer Club
- Players who create a Pokémon Trainer Club account also may use this account on the official Pokémon.com website and at Play! Pokémon events.
After logging into the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online with a Pokémon Trainer Club account, players advance directly from the second Tutorial to five additional Tutorials. These final set of Tutorials are not as "chatty". Instead, of computer-controlled Trainers discussing specific game mechanics, these Tutorials use abbreviated matches to introduce players to Special Conditions imposed by some attacks and introduce players to different Deck types and builds. In these final five matches, players are also presented with and slowly unlock a XY Basic Yellow Theme Deck. By the end of the seventh match, players will gain full access to this XY Basic Yellow Deck.
At the bottom of the main Tutorial screen, players find seven steps on a Tutorial Ladder represented by seven Trainers images and connected to one of seven unique Tutorials. When an individual Tutorial is completed, a green "check mark" is placed over the Tutorial Ladder image and the background turns from light blue to dark blue. Completing an individual Tutorial on the Tutorial Ladder earns players 25 to 75 Trainer Tokens (250 Trainer Tokens total) or a non-tradable, 10-card Booster pack. Players are welcome to replay a given Tutorial by selecting it on the Tutorial Ladder; however, the rewards may only be earned once.
For those seeking Additional tutorials outside of the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online itself, a brief description of How to play appears on the Pokémon Trading Card Game (TCG) page. The Appendix:Glossary also defines most TCG terminology and game mechanics. Players may also browse Bulbapedia related TCG articles at Category:Pokémon Trading Card Game. Bulbagarden additionally hosts forums to discuss the TCG at the Forum: Pokémon Trading Card Games. Finally, there are browser-based step-by-step TCG tutorials on Pokémon.com.
Quick Match is a single player mode using a randomly selected Theme deck that players have unlocked. Players battle against another randomly selected player. The match does not count toward Player rank, earn Trainer Tokens, or a Bonus Wheel spin.
Friend Battle is located under the Friends section of the Social menu by selecting the head silhouette next to a friend who is currently logged into the game. This mode allows players to play against another player who is on their Friends List. This mode does not count toward Player rank or earn Trainer Tokens and a Bonus Wheel spin.
Play Testing is located under the Deck Manager. This mode allows players to practice using their chosen deck against a random computer-controlled Trainer from the Trainer Challenge and does not count toward Player rank or earn Trainer Tokens and a Bonus Wheel spin.
These multiple and overlapping Reward systems built into the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online allow players to be rewarded for using the game based on their current area of interest rather than playing to any one specific Reward system. Players do not need to specifically focus on progressing within a specific Reward system track, but should instead feel free to play in the type of online Pokémon Trading Card Game matches they want and be rewarded for doing so. The eight primary Reward systems include: Bonus Wheel, Daily Challenge, Daily Login Bonus, Daily Match Bonus, Game play rewards, Mystery Box, Special Challenges, Tournament Chests, and Versus Ladder. Additional game play reward systems are built into each of the four primary modes of game play: Trainers Challenge, Versus Mode, Tournament Mode, and Tutorial Mode.
The Bonus Wheel provides an opportunity to receive special bonus rewards such as Trainer Tokens, Tournament Tickets, or a Mystery Box. Spins on the Bonus Wheel are earned through participation in a Random Battle in Versus Mode or a tournament match in Tournament Mode against another player.
There are two Bonus Wheels: a Victor’s Bonus Wheel and a Basic Bonus Wheel. The Victor’s Bonus Wheel includes greater Trainer Token amounts, an opportunity to receive Tournament Tickets, and a high value Mystery Box.
- Victor's Bonus Wheel: 5 Trainer Tokens ×3, 10 Trainer Tokens ×2, 15 Trainer Tokens ×1, 25 Trainer Tokens ×1, 1 Tournament Tickets ×2, and a Mystery Box ×1
- Basic Bonus Wheel: 1 Trainer Tokens ×4, 3 Trainer Tokens ×3, 5 Trainer Tokens ×2, and a Mystery Box ×1
- NOTE: The original, now retired, single Bonus wheel contained 1 to 5 Trainer Tokens, 1 Tournament Ticket, and a Mystery Box.
The Daily Challenge rewards players for playing the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online on a daily basis. Players are presented with specific game related challenges starting at 9:00 AM UTC (Coordinated Universal Time or Greenwich Mean Time) each day. Players may ONLY accept a single challenge during a single day. The challenge does not need to be completed before the end of a given day. However, players will not be offered a new challenge until they finish their current challenge or "Abandon" it, except as a new day's challenge may be worked on simultaneously as players advance in Player level. The first four challenges cannot be abandoned. If players complete their current challenge and a new day has already started, players will be offered that new day's challenge. If more than one day passes before players complete their current challenge, only the current new day's challenge will be presented. The challenge backlog or queue is never greater than one day at a time.
- NOTE: Players can only choose ONE CHALLENGE PER DAY. At higher Player levels, players have the opportunity to choice between two and eventually three options each day. However, they can only choose ONE of them. All additional challenges that players do not select are LOST. While players may choose another challenge on the following day and may also store up to two or three old challenges at higher Player levels, players can never pick up more than one new challenge each day.
As players successfully complete challenges, they earn Trainer Tokens and random Booster packs. Each Daily Challenge has an Pokémon type associated with it as well as an Experience Point (or XP) value, which are applied to that given Pokémon type. Each Pokémon type starts at Level 0 (zero) and increases to Level 3, unlocking special Pokémon type themed Coins (Level 1), Card sleeves (Level 2), and Deck boxes (Level 3). It takes a total of 5 XP for players to reach Level 1 in a given Pokémon type and then 5 more XP for Level 2. Pokémon type Level 3 requires 10 additional XP. If more XP is earned then required to reach the next level, it rolls over. However, at present, no XP will be applied after players reach Level 3 in a given Pokémon type. Active Challenges/Level Progress in the Player Profile will not read more than "20/20".
Earning a Pokémon type level also increases overall Player level by one. Players starts at Player level 0 (zero). Increasing Player level eventually allows players to save and pursue up to three Daily Challenges at one time.
- NOTE: "Player level" should not be confused with "Player rank", by which Pokémon Trading Card Game Online tracks player skill level when matching players for Random Battles matches and for indicating player "Advantage" in both Random Battle and Tournament matches
A popup window introduces the Daily Challenge to players following their logging into the game. Afterward, "Active Challenge" and "Level Progress" may be viewed in the center icon/tab under Player Profile. Selecting an active challenge will display a small trash can icon. Selecting the trash can icon allows players to "Abandon" that challenge. "Abandoning" a challenge will cause all progress to be lost.
- NOTE: The first four Daily Challenges may not be abandoned. Players must complete these first four challenges before additional, random challenges are presented.
By hovering over a given Pokémon type with the mouse pointer (or iPad equivalent), a small indicator will show players how much XP they have earned to date for the next Pokémon type level and how much total XP is needed to reach that level. Players must hover over the progress bar itself on a Daily Challenge in order for a similar indicator to appear detailing challenge progress.
The very first four challenges are presented in order and cannot be abandoned or bypassed. After these first four challenges are completed and continuing through Player level 5, challenges are selected randomly from a set of three challenge types based on four Pokémon types (Fire , Grass , Psychic , and Water ). These initial Pokémon types correspond to the Pokémon found in the three Starter Theme decks and the Mental Might Theme deck. Players may use these four Theme decks or any other deck that qualifies for the challenge criteria. Player level 6 challenges represent a blending of the initial set of random challenges and the second set of random challenges. The second set of random challenges are based on all Pokémon types (except for Colorless ) and becomes the default set at Player level 7. Random challenges haves a Rarity frequency that defines how often players should expect to be presented with a particular type of challenge: Common (), Uncommon (), and Rare (). The less common the challenge, the better the rewards. Booster packs awarded with the completion of Rare () challenges may be either 5-card or 10-card Booster packs, with 10-card Booster packs becoming more typical as players increase their Player level. Challenges known to be presented so far include:
Daily Login Bonus
The Daily Login Bonus provides a reward for playing Pokémon Trading Card Game Online on a daily basis simply by logging into the game. It consists of an initial track designed to help new players get started in the game, and a track that provides recurring rewards to existing players. Each reward unlocks the first time players login each day starting at 12:00 AM UTC (Coordinated Universal Time or Greenwich Mean Time). This reward system does not require players to login on consecutive days to maintain progress on the track. Once players complete the introductory New Player track, they are migrated to the recurring Existing Player track. There is no limit to the number of times players may complete the Existing Player track, as they are cycled back to the beginning of the track after receiving the bonus reward for the fifth day.
- New Player Track
- Existing Player Track
- Day 1 - 5 Trainer Tokens (Prior to the June 2, 2015 update, Day 1 awarded 15 Trainer Tokens.)
- Day 2 - 10 Trainer Tokens (Prior to the June 2, 2015 update, Day 2 awarded 15 Trainer Tokens.)
- Day 3 - 15 Trainer Tokens (Prior to the June 2, 2015 update, Day 3 awarded 1 Tournament Ticket. Prior to the April 3, 2014 update, Day 3 awarded 15 Trainer Tokens.)
- Day 4 - 1 Tournament Ticket (Prior to the June 2, 2015 update, Day 4 awarded 15 Trainer Tokens.)
- Day 5 - 1 non-tradable, 10-card Booster pack (randomly selected from Standard format expansions)
This reward system was briefly retired with the March 25, 2015 update in favor of the new Daily Challenge reward system but was reintroduced on June 2, 2015 to allow players who are not interested in pursuing Daily Challenges to continue earning daily rewards.
- NOTE: There is a separate Daily login bonus that may be received by logging into either Pokémon.com or TCGO each day starting at 12:00 AM UTC (Coordinated Universal Time or Greenwich Mean Time), which earn players/website users 12 Trainer Tokens. This Daily Login bonus to independent of the TCGO reward system.
Daily Match Bonus
The Daily Match Bonus or "Daily PvP Game Reward" awards 10 Trainer Tokens for completing the first Random Battle match each day (12:00 AM UTC, Coordinated Universal Time or Greenwich Mean Time), regardless of whether players win or lose and in addition to any other rewards. All player versus player match play time minimums apply.
Game play rewards
There are several reward systems built into the four primary Play Modes: Trainer Challenge, Versus Mode, Tournament Mode, and Tutorial Mode.
Mystery Box rewards are earned on Bonus Wheel spins. Rewards include both static rewards (25 Trainer Token, 4 Tournament Tickets, a 5-card Booster pack from the current Standard format expansion or randomly selected from current Standard format expansions) or items that are updated weekly such as a single expansion or promo card or a Gameplay item such as Coin or Card sleeve. The February 4, 2015 update increased the rewards in a Victor’s Mystery Box to include 50 Trainer Tokens, a larger Tournament Ticket amount, tradable single cards, and tradable 10-card Booster packs.
Special Challenges are like Daily Challenges except they are more complicated and therefore take more time to complete. They also offer greater rewards. They are viewed or abandoned just like Daily Challenges. Known Special Challenges include:
Tournament Chests are earned at the end of Tournament Mode tournaments. The exact number of chests awarded, if any, depends on player placement in a tournament. Each Tournament Chest contains a random number of Trainer Tokens and a single tradable card of Uncommon Rarity or higher from a Standard format expansion.
The Versus Ladder provides a improving set of rewards for players successfully Winning matches in Versus Mode. Players earn 10 Versus Points for every match they win in Versus Mode and an additional 5 Versus Points when the win against an opponent with the advantage. Players have 3 weeks or 21 days to progress as far as they can down the Versus Ladder before the ladder is reset. Players earning rewards along the way, including Trainer Tokens, Tournament Chests, Tournament Tickets, groups of one to three individual Pokémon cards (including Pokémon-EXs), and Booster packs.
There are three currencies available in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online. These are Trainer Tokens, Tournament Tickets, and Gems. Only Trainer Tokens and Tournament Tickets are currently obtainable worldwide.
- Main article: Trainer Token
Trainer Tokens may be used to redeem non-tradable, 5-card Booster packs (95 Trainer Tokens) from current expansions of the game and Non-exclusive Theme decks (500 Trainer Tokens) also from current expansions, as well as Avatar and Gameplay items. They are obtained through various means, including Daily Challenges, Trainer Challenges, Tutorial Ladder, Versus Ladder, Random Battle matches in the Versus Mode and Tournament Mode, and the Bonus Wheel.
Trainer Tokens are also be obtained by playing various browser-based games or by earning Stamps and reading articles on Pokémon.com. They may also be spent on various items for a player's Pokémon.com Trainer Avatar. This is similar to but distinct from the Pokémon TCG Online Avatar within the game itself.
- NOTE: 5-card Booster packs are unique to the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online. They contain at least 3 Common (), 1 Uncommon (), and the chance for 1 Rare () cards from a given expansion. Most Booster packs typically contain 10 cards and have a higher percentage of common cards in them, including those received as rewards in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online and redeemed with Redemption codes in the in-game Shop.
- 9.99 USD for 10 Tournament Tickets
- 24.99 USD for 25 Tournament Tickets
- 49.99 USD for 50 Tournament Tickets
- 99.99 USD for 100 Tournament Tickets
Tournament Tickets are currently available as Daily Login Bonus rewards, as rewards on the Versus Ladder, or by spinning the Bonus Wheel. They are used to gain access to tournaments in Tournament Mode by redeeming a certain amount of tickets needed to enter a given tournament.
Additionally, Tournament Tickets my be purchased by clicking on the Ticket icon on upper right side of Game menu found on most screens or by going directly to www.pokemontcg.com/us/purchase.
Gems are currently only available to adult players in Canada for testing and are purchased from the in-game Shop. Similar to Trainer Tokens, Gems may be used to purchase Booster packs, Non-exclusive Theme decks, Avatar items, and Gameplay items in the Shop or used as a currency for trading with other players.
- NOTE: A Gem is typically equal to 2 Trainer Tokens.
- Main article: Theme Deck (TCG)
Currently, new players have access to six Online-exclusive Theme decks unique to the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online. These Theme deck are composed of cards from various Black & White and XY expansions of the Pokémon Trading Card Game. Many Non-exclusive Theme decks are also available.
Online-exclusive Theme decks
- Main article: Online-exclusive Theme decks
Rotated Online-exclusive Theme decks
- Main article: Rotated Online-exclusive Theme decks
- Basic Orange was formally unlocked as the first Daily Login Bonus prior to the August 13, 2014 update. It can no longer be unlocked. It is still accessible to players who have already obtained it. It is NOT playable in the Trainer Challenge.
Non-exclusive Theme decks
- Main article: Non-exclusive redeemable decks
These Theme decks correspond to the physical decks in the Black & White Series expansion onward and be may unlocked in Pokémon Trading Card Game Online by redeeming the deck-access Redemption codes included in the Theme deck box. Only one Theme deck of the same kind per account can be unlocked regardless of the number of codes. Alternatively, newer Theme decks may also be purchased with Trainer Tokens or Gems in the in-game Shop. There is no limit to the number of in-game Shop copies of a Theme deck that may be purchased.
Players obtain a single Trainer Token for beating each of the 36 Trainers in the Trainer Challenge once per Theme deck. Additionally, players also obtain a non-tradable, 10-card Booster pack from the current Standard format by beating 12 Trainers once per Theme deck. These Trainer Tokens and Booster packs can only be obtained once per account.
The Game menu navigation system is accessable at the top of most Pokémon Trading Card Game Online screens. Game menu options appear in the following order left to right: Home, Play!, Cards, Shop & Redeem, Player Profile, TCGO graphic, Trainer Token total, Tournament Tickets total, Options, and Social menu. Many primary Game menu options provide access to additional secondary options. All game features should be accessable through this unified navigation system.
Home button (house symbol on green background). Selecting this button in the very upper left corner of most Pokémon Trading Card Game Online screens takes players back to the initial login Landing screen.
Play! button (triangle “play” symbol on green background). Allows players to select from the following Play Modes: Trainer Challenge (star), Versus Mode (lightning bolt), Tournament Mode (tropy cup), Tutorial (graduation cap), and Quick Match (triangle “play” symbol).
Cards button (three cards on green background). Allows players to select the following Pokémon card related features: Collection viewer (three cards), Deck Manager (open deck box), and Trade (right & left arrows).
Collection viewer button (three cards). The Collection viewer shows cards, unopened Booster packs and Non-exclusive Theme decks, and Avatar and Gameplay items in a player's collection as well as items players tag "For Trade", "Wanted", or "For Review".
Trade Locked cards
Most cards available in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online are "Trade Locked", meaning that they may not be Traded with other players. This limitation is designed to discourage "card farming" — players creating extra accounts solely to expand their card collection through card trading (including trades with the player's primary account). Only cards redeemed with Redemption codes found with the purchase of physical Non-exclusive Theme decks, Booster packs, and similar collections, gained through Booster packs earned in Tournament Mode, and Booster packs and individual cards earned through the Victor's Bonus Wheel are "Tradable". Two symbols at the bottom of each card in the Collection viewer represent how many Tradable or Trade Locked cards players have in their collection. The left number with a blue background represents tradable cards, while the right number next to the padlock symbol with the grey background represents Trade Locked cards.
Deck Manager button (open deck box). The Deck Manager allows the players to view, clone, edit or create decks using obtained cards and items. Decks may be created in either the Standard, Expanded or Unlimited format Play types. Selecting a Standard format or Expanded format filters out cards not sanctioned for official Pokémon Trading Card Game events. After selecting a set of 60 cards, a Deck box, Coin, and Card sleeve Gameplay item may also be selected. While the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online presents an option to select a Playmat, only the default Playmat is available at this time. These Gameplay items may be obtained by Redemption codes from code cards or event codes in the in-game Shop or purchased with Trainer Tokens or Gems.
Trade buttun (right & left arrows). The Trade system allows players to view and create public and private trade offers in-game. Players may trade one or several items, cards, and packs in each transaction. Items, cards, and packs obtained from Daily Challenges, the Trainer Challenges, redeeming the multiple-use Redemption codes or with Trainer Tokens are not available for trade with other players (appeared as "Trade Locked") to prevent players from accumulating these items by creating multiple accounts.
Shop & Redeem
Shop & Redeem button (shopping cart on orange background). It is where players go to purchase, typically through in-game Currency, items in the in-game Shop such as Non-exclusive Theme decks, 5-card, non-tradable Booster packs, Gameplay items, and Avatar items or redeem codes for similar items.
in-game Shop button (shopping cart). The in-game Shop system allows players to purchase Non-exclusive Theme decks, 5-card Booster packs, Gameplay items (Card sleeves, Coins, Deck boxes, etc.), and Avatar items with either Trainer Tokens or Gems. Redeeming Redemption codes, found with the physical purchase of the above items, is also done through this in-game Shop. Finally, the Shop allows adult players to purchase Gems and Tournament Tickets with real currency. A Gem is typically equal to 2 Trainer Tokens.
Starting on March 13, 2015, the predictability of item availability was streamlined and standardized. A weekly special rotation was established, which occurs at midnight Wednesday UTC (Coordinated Universal Time or Greenwich Mean Time), when a new Weekly special is offered and the former Weekly special is removed. The rotation should see a specific item's eventual return in the rotation cycle. Quarterly, new Non-exclusive Theme decks and Booster packs are introduced following the release of a new Pokémon Trading Card Game expansion. Annually, older Non-exclusive Theme decks and sometimes Booster packs are removed following the start of a new format Rotation usually after the Trading Card Game World Championships in August of each year. Finally, there are occasional, exclusive items made available for time to time that may only remain available for a less defined, limited period.
Redeem codes button (gift box w/ bow). Redemption codes are unique codes that allow players to unlock Theme decks, Booster packs and more. They are only found on specially marked packs and decks. "Contains 1 code card" is found on the back of Booster packs which contain a Redemption code card. Only Theme decks that are clearly marked "Play This Deck Online" will contain Redemption codes. These unique Redemption codes can only be used once.
However, there are generic Redemption codes which may be used by all Pokémon TGCO players. The following are confirmed codes which unlock Theme decks, Booster packs, and Avatar items (all of which are non-tradable):
Player Profile (Lvl Number – yellow text on green background). It is located just to the left of the large TCGO graphic in the upper center of most screens. Selecting the Player Profile provides access to the Avatar Creator, Daily Challenge information, and player game Statistics.
Selecting the Avatar Creator icon (left most of three icon near the upper righthand corner of the Player Profile screen — short sleeve t-shirt) allows players to customize their online Avatar in-game picture. Players may select from several skin and hair colors, hair styles, facial features, and clothes (also known as "Avatar items"). Players may unlock various Avatar items (clothes) by purchasing them with Trainer Tokens or Gems in the in-game Shop, redeeming codes in the Shop, or by Trading with other players. Trainer Tokens may also be used to unlock clothing items on Pokémon.com by going to Customize Trainer. Avatar and/or Trainer clothing items available for purchase in one, are not always available for purchase in the other. Items added in one are not always available in the other. Like Pokémon cards, Avatar items cannot always be traded. Items purchased on Pokémon.com typically cannot be traded.
The Avatar Creator in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online adopts changes made by players on Pokémon.com to their Customize Trainer the next time that players logs back in to the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online, and visa versa.
Active Challenges/Level Progress
This is the default screen that opens when players select their Player Profile, represented as the middle of three icon near the upper righthand corner of the Player Profile screen (an upward pointing arrow). All Active Challenges are displayed here after they are first presented to players in a popup window upon login into the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online. Additionally, player progress toward achieving specific Energy type level and rewards and overall Player level are also viewable here.
The Statistics icon (right most of three icon near the upper righthand corner of the Player Profile screen with three dots followed by three short lines). It allows players to view their cumulative "Game Stats" and "Collection Stats" on one of two tabs. Before being retired, information about the Achievements reward system was also located here.
| Game Stats:
|| Collection Stats:
- Total Cards Drawn
- Total Damage Dealt
- Total Damage Taken
- Total Games Played
- Total Game Points
- Total Hours Played
- Tournament Points
- Total Upset Wins
- Percent Complete — percentage of cards obtained out of all cards available in the game
- Different Cards Owned — number of different cards in a player's collection
- Total Cards Owned — total number of cards in a player's collection
- Set Nearest to Completion — expansion or set with the highest percentage of total cards are in a player's collection
- Complete Sets — enumeration of expansion or sets of which all cards are in a player's collection
- Most of One Card
- Foil Cards Owned — number of holofoil and reverse-holofoil rare cards
Selecting the large Pokémon Trading Card Game Online graphic in the upper center of most Pokémon Trading Card Game Online screens takes players back to the initial post-login Landing screen.
Trainer Token total
Trainer Token total (yellow coin on blue). This area provides the total number of player earned Trainer Tokens. Nothing happens when selecting the Trainer Token total image area. It is provided strictly for display purposes only.
Tournament Tickets total
Tournament Tickets total (yellow ticket on blue background). This area provides the total number of player earned Tournament Tickets. Selecting the Tournament Ticket total take adult players to a webpage where additional Tickets may be purchased. Otherwise, it is provided strictly for display purposes only.
Options button (2 gears on green background). The Options menu is the second to last option in the upper righthand corner of most screens. It allows players to access the in-game Settings, Help, and Exit the game. It is one of two Game menu navigation system options available while players are competing in a Pokémon Trading Card Game Match.
Located in Options, this feature allows players to change various Game Settings such as "Game Play", "Video", "Audio", and "Image Cache". Multiple players using the same Pokémon Trading Card Game Online program have individual/per-account settings.
- NOTE: Turning off "Tool Tip Hints" may negatively affect game play by making certain in-game information inaccessible, such as how many cards are left in the player's or an opponent's deck.
Pokémon Trainer Club
- Main article: Pokémon Trainer Club
Some game settings are inaccessible in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online game itself and can only be found in the Pokémon Trainer Club by signing into Pokémon.com and viewing a player Profile. Adult players may adjust all available settings by selecting "Pokémon TCG Online Settings" under the adult player's Profile.
- Main article: Pokémon.com, User profile
While the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online strives to be child friendly, parents may further restrict access to certain in-game features by signing into the parent's account on Pokémon.com, selecting the child's account under the parent account, and selecting Pokémon TCG Online Settings. Parents should be certain to select "Pokémon TCG Online Settings" under the child's account, not the parent's account. Parents may then restrict some in-game features such as Friend Chat, Game Chat, Shopping, and Trading.
- NOTE: Some in-game features are inaccessible in child accounts, such as Public Chat and Private Messaging, while other in-game features are restricted by limiting available options. Adult accounts do not have such restrictions.
Also located in Options, players "Exit" or "Logout" of the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online by selecting.
Social menu button (left facing triangle with three head silhouettes on green background). The Social menu is found in the upper lefthand corner of most screens. When it is selected, it opens a side bar that slides out from the right side of the screen. When open, this Social menu side bar allows players to search for online "Friends", participate in "Public Chats", and review many recent in-game notification "Messages". It is one of two Game menu navigation system options available while players are competing in a Pokémon Trading Card Game Match, although its feature set is adjusted to reflect the in progress match context.
By selecting the head silhouette image next to a "Friend"'s screen name, players are provided with several options: "Challenge Friend To A Game" (lightning with two head silloettes), "Private Message" (word bubble with three dots), "Remove Friend" (minus sign with head silhouette), and "Block And Ignore Player" (circle with strikeout line).
Players may choose to Block other players from interacting with them for any reason within the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online, including features such as "Chat" and Versus Mode Random Battles. This "Block and Ignore Player" feature is found in the Social menu's "Freind" and "Chat" sections by selecting the head silhouette icon next a player's name and then selecting the "Block and Ignore Player" option.
Players earn up to four stars for each of the 36 Trainer opponents in the Trainer Challenge. Whether players win or lose, points are calculated at the end of a match. These points are added to the current point total for that individual Trainer in that position in a given league. Based on that cumulative total, players earn the following four stars and game rewards:
- 1 Star (at 1,000 points) = 1 Trainer Token (per Trainer opponent)
- 2 Stars (at 5,000 points) = 3 Trainer Tokens (per Trainer opponent)
- 3 Stars (at 14,000 points) = 10 Trainer Tokens (per Trainer opponent)
- 4 Stars (at 30,000+ points) = 1 non-tradable, 10-card Booster pack from the current Standard format (per Trainer opponent)
- Additionally, players obtain 3 more non-tradable, 10-card Booster packs from the current Standard format format by earning 4 Stars with all 12 Trainers in a league for 9 more Booster packs.
These Trainer Tokens and 45 total Booster packs may only be obtained once per account.
Scoring points in a Trainer Challenge match is based on various player performance criteria and on the difficulty level chosen, with a higher difficulty level earning more points per match:
- Easy = ½ the point bonus (×0.5)
- Medium = normal point bonus (×1)
- Hard = triple the point bonus (×3)
Game notifications are posted via two methods: 1.) the Game Information section at the bottom of the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online log-in screen, and 2.) Pop-up Windows that appear shortly after logging into the game. Notices include Daily Challenge announcements as well as announcements concerning future Tournament special events, server maintenance that will make the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online unplayable for a few hours, information about a recent program upgrade or patch, etc.
Gameplay items include Card sleeves, Coins, and Deck boxes. There is no unique advantage to selecting any one Gameplay item over another. It is solely a matter of player preferences about how certain game elements look. Gameplay items may be purchased from time to time in the in-game Shop, made available along with the purchase of Theme decks directly from the in-game Shop or through Redemption codes provided with the purchase of physical Theme decks and other select card collections, or may be Traded for with other players.
- NOTE: Playmats are not currently available in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online, although an option to select one in the Deck Manager indicates that they may become available in the future.
- Main article: Coin (TCG)
Coins are Gameplay items that are used in-game when a move, status effect, or ability requires a coin flip. Different coins have no special effects; their only difference is their appearance. Players start out with the Red Arceus coin. At one time, the Blue Energy coin was given to players by completing certain in-game achievements (currently unavailable to newer players). Additional coins are made available when players redeem a purchased Non-exclusive Theme deck's Redemption code or event code in the in-game Shop or when players purchase a Non-exclusive Theme deck through Trainer Tokens or Gems.
The Landing screen is what players see immediately upon logging into the game. The Game menu on the Landing screen lacks a Home or selectable TCGO graphic since these options navitage the player back to this screen. Players may re-access the Landing screen by clicking on the Home button or the TCGO graphic logo. The Landing screen is the only way to access the five day Daily Login Bonus chart by selecting the Pokéball in the lower right.
The first sceen players see upon logging into Pokémon Trading Card Game Online. If players already have a Pokémon Trainer Club account, they may enter their "Username" and "Password" to log into the game. Additionally, in the upper left, players may select from one of several languages. They may choose to Exit the game by selecting the red "Power" button in the upper right. Finally, across bottom of the screen, players my select from "Forget Login Info?", "Create New Account", and "Play as Guest".
- Card Detail View
- For the Windows PC client, detail about a given card is available to the player by right clicking on the card. During matches, a much larger image of the card is displayed. When opening a new Booster pack or Theme deck or when using the Deck Manager and Trade, players are presented with a card interface similar to the Collection viewer, which displays how many total copies of that card the player already has in their collection and what number of these cards are tradeable or locked. Players can also mark the cards "For Trade", "Wanted", and "For Review". When opening Booster packs and Theme decks, this is often the only way to see this additional card information.
- Full Screen/Window Display
- For the Windows PC client, players may switch between a full screen display and a window display by using the following keyboard key combination: hold down the Alt key and then press the Enter key. For the Mac client, hold down the Command key then press the Enter key. Display issues may arise when not playing the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online inside a full screen.
- Match Inactivity
- Players must remain actively engaged in matches with other online players in Versus Mode or Tournament Mode. Discussions in the Social menu's "Game Chat" do not count toward player activity. Players should be considerate of the time invested not only by themselves but also their opponents. If the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online determines that players are inactive too long, it will display a 15 second warning. Ignoring the warning causes players to lose matches. This activity mechanism is designed to help insure players do not take advantage of another player.
- Minimum Playtime Requirement
- During Versus Mode Random Battle and Tournament Mode matches against other online players, Trainer Token and Bonus Wheel rewards are earned if matches lasts at least 2 minutes (5 minutes prior to the April 3, 2014 update). This minimum amount of time was increased with the December 22, 2014 update for players forfeiting matches early (actively leaving a match, remaining inactive for an extended period of time, or not taking at least one Prize card) back to 5 minutes while guaranteeing rewards for players whose opponent forfeits matches regardless of the amount of time that passed. This change was designed to discourage players for only playing long enough to earn Trainer Token and Bonus Wheel rewards.
- Loss of Internet Connection
- During online player versus player matches in Versus Mode or Tournament Mode, if players lose their Internet connection, they have 5 minutes to log back into the game before their opponents are declared the winner. When the Internet connection is lost by an opponent, players are notified with a pop-up message.
"Player level" strictly corresponds to player progress in the Daily Challenge reward system. It should not be confused with "Player rank", which is related to player versus player Random Battles or Tournament matches. Successful completion of challenges earns players Experience Points (or XP) that are applied to a specific Energy type related to a given challenge. Players eventually earn levels (Levels 0 to 3) for each Energy type. Earning Energy type levels increases overall Player level. Every players starts at Player level 0 (zero). Higher Player level grants greater flexibility in completing Daily Challenges.
| Player level
|| Available Challenges
|| Total Active Challenges
| 0 to 2
|| Players receive one Daily Challenge option per day and may pursue one Daily Challenge at a time.
| 3 to 4
|| Players choose one of two Daily Challenges per day and may pursue one Daily Challenge at a time.
| 5 to 7
|| Players choose one of two Daily Challenges per day and may pursue up to two Daily Challenges at a time.
| 8 to 9
|| Players choose one of three Daily Challenges per day and may pursue up to two Daily Challenges at a time.
| 10 or more
|| Players choose one of three Daily Challenges per day and may pursue up to three Daily Challenges at a time.
Little is known about the specific mechanics of the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online's "Player rank" system or exactly when and why players are identified to have an "Advantage" in a Random Battle or Tournament match. The ranking system appears to be based on specific player deck history instead of overall player history. A separate matchmaking system for the Theme Deck format Play type was implemented in Versus Mode so that player history with Theme Decks format would not directly translate over to other Play type formats.
Based on the ranking system, players with an "Advantage" are not always identified during a match. However, if Pokémon Trading Card Game Online does and the player without the "Advantage" wins the match, the winning player earns 2 Trainer Tokens. The ranking system is also used to help match players of similar experience during player versus player Random Battle matches. The Player rank system is more effective matching players during high player active and less effective when fewer players are looking to play a Random Battle against other online player. "Player rank" should not be confused with "Player level", which is related to the Daily Challenge reward system.
Versus Points allow players to advance along the Versus Ladder reward system. Players earn 10 Versus Points for every match they win in Versus Mode and an additional 5 Versus Points when the win against an opponent with the advantage.
The following are features still unavailable worldwide:
Retired game features
The Pokémon Trading Card Game Online has been in continual development since its initial inception. Often updates involve the addition of new rules and card as new expansion sets are released, the resolution of program errors, player interface changes improving usability, and the addition or re-addition of new game features. Occasionally, updates to the game involve the removal of previously existing game features.
| The Achievements reward system was another feature retired on March 25, 2015, though it had not been actively updated for some time prior to its retirement. Players earned Achievements for completing various tasks. These Achievements had no special effect on the game. Pokémon Trading Card Game Online has announced the intention to reward players who completed a significant number of Achievements before it was retired with special card sleeve(s) to commemorate given Achievements. Specific details are not yet known.
- Misc. Achievements
- Trainer Challenge Achievements
- Blade of Grass. Win 8 games with the Basic Green deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Firestarter. Win 8 games with the Basic Red deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Breaking Wave. Win 8 games with the Basic Blue deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Rallying Cry. Win 12 games with the Rallying Cry deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Verdant Frost. Win 12 games with the Verdant Frost deck (unavailable to newer players in later years) in the Trainer Challenge
- Royal Guard. Win 12 games with the Royal Guard deck (unavailable to newer players) in the Trainer Challenge
- Daybreak. Win 12 games with the Daybreak deck (unavailable to newer players in later years) in the Trainer Challenge
- Nightfall. Win 12 games with the Nightfall deck (unavailable to newer players in later years) in the Trainer Challenge
- Green Tornado. Win 12 games with the Green Tornado deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Red Frenzy. Win 12 games with the Red Frenzy deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Blue Assault. Win 12 games with the Blue Assault deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Night Hunter. Win 12 games with the Night Hunter deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Power Play. Win 12 games with the Power Play deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Toxic Tricks. Win 12 games with the Toxic Tricks deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Fast Daze. Win 12 games with the Fast Daze deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Furious Knights. Win 12 games with the Furious Knights deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Explosive Edge. Win 12 games with the Explosive Edge deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Voltage Vortex. Win 12 games with the Voltage Vortex deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Raiders. Win 12 games with the Raiders deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Shadows. Win 12 games with the Shadows deck in the Trainer Challenge
- Covering The Basics. Win one game with each color the three Basic decks
- Gold League Champ. Win all the games in the Gold League
- Platinum League Champ. Win all the games in the Platinum League
- Diamond League Champ. Win all the games in the Diamond League (unavailable to newer players in later years)
- City Champion. Win all the games in the City Championship
- Triple Crown Champ. Win the Gold, Platinum, and Diamond Leagues (unavailable to newer players in later years)
- Game Mastery. Earn four stars in a single game in the Trainer Challenge
- League Mastery. Earn four stars in all 12 games in a single League in the Trainer Challenge
- Trainer Challenge Mastery. Earn four stars in all 12 games in three different Leagues in the Trainer Challenge
- Status-based Achievements
- Imperishable Night. Take no Damage from an opponent attack while playing the Nightfall deck (unavailable to newer players in later years) in the Trainer Challenge
- Into That Good Night. Apply two simultaneous special conditions while playing the Nightfall deck (unavailable to newer players in later years) in the Trainer Challenge
- All-Around Conditioning. Inflict all 5 special conditions on opposing Pokémon while playing the Daybreak deck (unavailable to newer players in later years) in the Trainer Challenge
- Healing Light. Heal 60 or more Damage in a single turn while playing the Daybreak deck (unavailable to newer players in later years) in the Trainer Challenge
- Baffling. Confuse 5 opposing Pokémon in the same game.
- Incendiary. Burn 5 opposing Pokémon in the same game.
- Stunning. Paralyze 5 opposing Pokémon in the same game.
- Soporific. Put 5 opposing Pokémon to sleep in the same game.
- Venomous. Poison 5 opposing Pokémon in the same game.
- Knock Outs based on history Achievements
- 50th Knockout. Knock Out 50 of your opponents' Pokémon
- 500th Knockout. Knock Out 500 of your opponents' Pokémon
- 1000th Knockout. Knock Out 1000 of your opponents' Pokémon
- 5000th Knockout. Knock Out 5000 of your opponents' Pokémon
- The Win of the Century. Win 100 games
- Triple Threat. Complete wins with all 3 victory conditions
- Knock Outs based on a single match Achievements
- KO!. Knock Out a Pokémon
- Too Easy. Knock Out a previously uninjured Pokémon in a single attack
- Two for One. Knock Out 2 Pokémon with one attack
- Hat Trick. Knock Out 3 Pokémon with one attack
- Quad Damage. Knock Out 4 Pokémon with one attack
- Full House. Knock Out 5 Pokémon with one attack
- Clean Sweep. Knock Out 6 Pokémon with one attack
- Damage dealt or healed in a single match Achievements
- First Blood. Deal 50 damage
- Super Effective. Deal 100 or more damage in a single attack
- Overwhelming. Deal 200 or more damage in a single attack
- Devastation. Deal 300 or more damage in a single attack
- Healer. Heal 100 or more damage in a single game
| This former in-game Currency was originally used with Redemption code cards found in physical Booster packs. Booster Credits could be redeemed for Booster packs of the player’s choice in the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online from HeartGold & SoulSilver through Boundaries Crossed expansions. This Redemption code card method ended with the release of the Plasma Storm expansion when codes from a specific expansion Booster pack became redeemable for a virtual version of that specific Booster pack. The Booster Credit system officially ended on July 1, 2013. From July 2013 to December 2013, players with Booster Credits redeemed before July 2013 could redeem these credits for any pack from Next Destinies to Boundaries Crossed expansions. Players who still had Booster Credits after the February 7, 2014 update automatically had any remained credits redeemed for Boundaries Crossed Booster packs.
| A higher difficulty, fourth "Diamond League" existed in the Trainer Challenge prior to the February 7, 2014 update.
| The original dedicated set of tutorials taught by the Professor in the original browser-based release of the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online were never transferred to the downloadable version of the game, though a new set of Tutorials has since been added to the beginning of the game for first time players. The original tutorials continue to exist as a stand-alone browser-based program found on the Trading Card Game section of the Pokémon.com website.
| The Ranked Battle option was folded directly into "Random Battle" in Versus Mode with the March 25, 2015 update after the removal of Practice Battle option rather than "Random Battle" being one of two options under "Ranked Battle".
| Early expectation for the Tournament Mode envisioned Tournament Keys as the in-game Currency used to access special Tournament events. Tournament Keys were never implemented in open beta testing, which instead utilized Tournament Tickets.
The Pokémon Trading Card Game Online was originally released on March 24, 2011 as a browser-based game. The game was subsequently redesigned as a downloadable game utilizing the Unity (game engine), and relauched on May 15, 2012 for PC, on November 5, 2012 for Mac, and on September 30, 2014 for iPad. The original browser-based version continued to function until August 8, 2012. Development continues on the downloadable version even after it officially emerged from open beta testing in February 2015. Additionally, some early features have also been retired or removed from the game.
The reprogramming and relaunch of the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online initially required the removal all game features except for the Trainer Challenge and the now retired Achievements reward system. Other features were gradually readded or added over time:
- Avatar Creator — While rudimentary Avatar options (4 male and 4 female) were reintroduced on June 12, 2012, true functionality was not reintroduced until the June 20, 2013 update.
- Collection viewer, Deck Manager, Social menu, and Player Profile — Reintroduced on August 21, 2012.
- Versus Mode — Also reintroduced on August 21, 2012 and Deck formats introduced on December 12, 2012.
- in-game Shop — Also reintroducted on August 21, 2012 (initially allowing for just Code Redemption and Booster pack purchases through the now retired Booster Credit system) with the current Gems system added on April 19, 2013 and the Trainer Token system on July 25, 2013.
- Trade interface — Reintroduced with the October 24, 2012 update.
- Daily Login Bonus and Daily Match Bonus reward systems — Introduced on January 16, 2013 as two parallel reward systems. Both were temporarily retired on March 25, 2015 in favor of the new Daily Challenge reward system, but the Daily Match Bonus was subsequently reintroduced on April 23, 2015 and the Daily Login Bonus on June 2, 2015.
- Booster pack, Exclusive TCGO 5-card — Introduced with the July 25, 2013 update.
- Player rank — "Advantage" notification feature added on October 2, 2013.
- "Play as a Guest" option — Introduced in October 2013.
- Player Interface overhaul — Substantial changes to the game interface began in mid-2013 and continued to early-2014, which allowed for the introduction of the touchscreen based iPad client in September 2014. A streamlining of the overall Game menu navigation system was introduced on July 14, 2015.
- Tournament Mode — Introduced for testing with the March 27, 2014 update with occasional trial Tournament special events until it officially premiered on February 5, 2015 and continuously running tournaments on February 24, 2015.
- Bonus Wheel and Mystery Box — Added with the June 24, 2014 update, while the February 4, 2015 update split the Bonus Wheel into a Victor's and a Loser's Bonus Wheel.
- Tutorials — Two match based Tutorials added on August 14, 2014. Five additional Tutorials with XY Basic Yellow Starter Theme Deck and Tutorial Reward Ladder added on July 14, 2015.
- Pokémon Trainer Club — Added ability for players to register for a Pokémon Trainer Club account from within the game on September 3, 2014.
- Daily Challenge — Implemented on March 25, 2015 replacing the briefly retired Daily Login Bonus and Daily Match Bonus and retired Achievements reward systems. The June 2, 2015 update reduced the requirements for Evolution challenges by ½ and Knock Out challenges by 10, replaced challenges with a "Play Basic Pokémon" completion requirement to a "Do damage to opposing Pokémon" requirement, and temporarily removed all challenges with Special Condition completion requirements.
- Special Challenges and Tournament Chests — Implemented with the May 6, 2015 update.
- Versus Ladder — Introduced on July 14, 2015 to complement the other existing Reward systems.
- ↑ Tournament Rotation Refined — March 31, 2015
- ↑ Daily Challenge Details — Clocks, Levels and More - April 3, 2015
- ↑ Tournament Chests/Special Challenges — May 6, 2015
- ↑ Booster pack bundle, XY 4 Booster Pack Bundle with Krookodile-EX — April 1, 2015
- ↑ Shop rotation, Development Update: Tournaments, Shop and Next Game Update — March 13, 2015
- ↑ New Trainer Challenge scoring system — April 23, 2013
- ↑ Minimum PvP match time/Daily Login Bonus, 188.8.131.522 Hotfix Notes | April 3, 2014
- ↑ PvP match forfeiting, 184.108.40.2062 Patch Notes | December 17, 2014
- ↑ Theme Deck format & Player rank – 2.29 Patch Notes | July 14, 2015
- ↑ Feature Retirement, 2.27 Patch Notes | March 25, 2015
- ↑ Booster Credit, 1.0.94 Patch Notes | February 6, 2013
- ↑ Booster Credit Sunsetting—Phase II — May 31, 2013
- ↑ Tournament Keys, 2013 March Community Update — March 28, 2013
- ↑ Web-based, Pokémon Trading Card Game Online announcements — February 25 & March 23, 2011
- ↑ Unity Game Engine, 2012 April Community Update — April 27, 2012
- ↑ TCGO Beta Release for PC, Build Notes — May 15, 2012
- ↑ TCGO Beta Release for Mac, 2012 October Community Update — October 27, 2012
- ↑ TCGO Beta Release for Mac, 2012 Patch notes for 11/16 — November 17, 2012
- ↑ TCGO Release, The Pokémon TCG Online Comes to iPad! — September 30, 2014
- ↑ Web-based Pokemon TCG Online now offline — August 8, 2012
- ↑ End of Open Beta, September 2014 Community Update — September 25, 2014
- ↑ Relaunch, 2012 March Community Update — March 30, 2012
- ↑ Initial features, New Trainer Challenge build heads up — May 11, 2012
- ↑ Achievements, Build Notes | May 15, 2012
- ↑ Achievements, State of the Game | May 21, 2012
- ↑ Avatar Creator, Build Notes | June 12, 2012
- ↑ Avatar Creator, 2013 June Community Update — June 29, 2013
- ↑ Many features reintroduced, 2012 July Community Update — July 24, 2012
- ↑ Versus Mode, 1.0.71 Build Notes | December 12, 2012
- ↑ in-game Shop, Notes for Build 220.127.116.11 — August 21, 2012
- ↑ Gems, 1.8.0 Patch Notes | April 18, 2013
- ↑ Gems, 2013 April Community Update — April 25, 2013
- ↑ Trainer Tokens, 1.11.18 Patch Notes | July 25, 2013
- ↑ Trading, 1.0.42 Build Notes | October 23, 2012
- ↑ Daily Bonuses, 1.0.84 Build Notes | January 16, 2013
- ↑ Daily Match Bonus, Server Update | April 23, 2015
- ↑ Daily Login Bonus, 2.28.1 Patch Notes | June 2, 2015
- ↑ 5-card Booster pack, 2013 July Community Update — July 31, 2013
- ↑ Player rank, 1.13.27 Patch Notes | October 3, 2013
- ↑ Play as a Guest, 2013 October Community Update — November 1, 2013
- ↑ Interface changes, 2013 July Community Update — July 31, 2013
- ↑ Interface changes, 2013 September Community Update — October 2, 2013
- ↑ Interface changes, 2013 November Community Update — November 28, 2013
- ↑ Interface changes, January 2014 Community Update — January 9, 2014
- ↑ Interface changes, 2.17.239 | February 5, 2014
- ↑ Interface changes, 18.104.22.1680 Patch Notes | March 27, 2014
- ↑ Interface changes & iPad, September 2014 Community Update — September 25, 2014
- ↑ Dev Update: Versus Rewards, New Layout & Stomped Bugs — July 14, 2015
- ↑ Tournament Mode, February 2014 Community Update — March 1, 2014
- ↑ Tournament Mode, 22.214.171.1240 Patch Notes | March 27, 2014
- ↑ Tournaments Alpha Testing Status Update — April 11, 2014
- ↑ Tournament Mode, April 2014 Community Update — May 1, 2014
- ↑ The Clash of Magma vs. Aqua - The very first Pokémon TCG Online tournament event! — February 4, 2015
- ↑ Play Tournaments! On-demand — February 24, 2015
- ↑ Give the Bonus Wheel a Spin! — June 25, 2014
- ↑ Mystery Box contents updates — July 28, 2014
- ↑ Bonus Wheel, 2.26 Patch Notes | February 4, 2015
- ↑ Tutorials, 126.96.36.1995 Patch Notes | August 13, 2014
- ↑ New Tutorial and XY Basic Yellow Deck in Version 2.29 — July 14, 2015
- ↑ Pokémon Trainer Club, 188.8.131.522 Patch Notes | September 3, 2014
- ↑ Daily Challenge Details – Achievements and Daily Login — March 24, 2015
- ↑ Special Challenges/Tournament Chests, 2.28 Patch Notes | May 6, 2015
- ↑ Dev Update: Refining Rewards and Coming Features — June 5, 2015
- ↑ Earn Versus Points for Victories! — July 14, 2015