GameStop will buy graded Pokémon cards soon, says staff

GameStop may begin purchasing graded Pokémon cards at a select number of retail locations soon, according to store associates. If true, the move would make the retailer one of the single largest buyers of graded collectibles with nearly 3,000 potential retail locations in the United States for consumers to sell their cards. Rumors first began circulating Thursday, via PokéBeach. Polygon has reached out to GameStop’s press team for comment.

Polygon spoke with multiple GameStop locations on Friday in four different states — Arizona, Illinois, Florida, and New York. Stores in three of those states confirmed that the new offering had been communicated to them by their corporate office. Associates with knowledge of the program said that only cards graded by Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA) would be accepted, that those cards must be graded eight or higher on that company’s 10-point grading scale, and that no cards valued at more than $500 would be accepted in store.

None of the staff Polygon spoke to knew if, or when, those cards might be sold at retail.

The market for Pokémon, new and old, picked up during the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, a number of high-profile Pokémon card sales have raised the profile of these particular collectibles.

It remains to be seen, however, how GameStop’s entry into the secondary card marketplace will impact independent retailers. Many local game shops do a steady business in so-called “singles” and graded cards, and it continues to be a strong source of revenue in an otherwise turbulent retail landscape.

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