An extremely rare Pokémon card known as Pikachu Illustrator or Illustrator Pikachu has been sold for the tidy sum of $54 970 (around R780 800) at an auction in Beverly Hills.

The card was purchased by an unidentified collector from Hong Kong at the auction held by Heritage Auctions. The card depicts the lovable yellow pocket monster holding paint brushes and bears the title “Illustrator” rather than the “Trainer” which is usually emblazoned on cards.

Image via Bulbapedia

If you’re a Pokémon card collector and you think you might be sitting on one of these rare cards, think again. The card was given out as a reward for the Pokémon Card Game Illust Artist Contest first announced in 1997. Two more contests, Mewtwo’s Counterattack Commemoration Illust Artist Contest and Pikachu’s Summer Vacation Commemoration Illust Contest were also held and winners from those contests also recieved a copy of the Pikachu Illustrator card.

In total only 39 copies of this card ever entered circulation. In a report by Daily Maverick, spokesperson for Heritage Auctions, Michael Halperin says that only 10 of the cards are known to be in mint condition but that it is unclear how many cards are still around.

The seller of the card, according to Halperin, did not wish to be identified but is in their mid-20s and allegedly began collecting Pokémon cards in their teens. The seller reportedly put the card up for auction after Pokémon GO took the world by storm.

[Image – CC BY SA Farley Santos]