No, I’m not talking about the cards being issued by ex-president Donald Trump. This website is not in any way engaged in politics. What I’m really taking about are the different types of game cards which people play against each other.
When I was young, they were called trump cards, but I think these cards are now collectively called trading cards. Think of the Pokemon, Dragon Ball Z and other game cards were gamers win by owning a card which has a higher point value than their competitor’s card.
Today, there are trading cards for many mass-media entertainment products. I have said that the popular characters of anime shows have trading cards, but not only they, even Lord Of The Rings (LOTR) for example has trading cards.
This is especially so if the mass-media characters can be competed against each other in some form. Characters in the LOTR books can for example be compared to each other’s fighting or healing abilities.
Humans would be very efficient if they work productively during their entire waking hours, but this is not so. Many humans get tired and bored of work and need rest, and when they are resting, they tend to consume entertainment products.
One of the most primitive forms of entertainment would be sports and games. These forms of entertainment circle around the theme of competition, and many people are delighted with the idea of being able to compete against other people.
I won’t go much further with my explanation, but it is suffice to say that many people want to compete against other people in one form or another. This must be the reason why trading card games like those of Pokemon and other combat related games are popular.
It’s also easy to see why sports stars trading cards are popular. There are American baseball trading cards that sell for several thousands of dollars in mint condition. The last time I checked online, some old anime trading cards have already appreciated in value.
If you ever want to create your own line of trading cards, it would be a prudent move to create trading cards of characters and objects that you could easily compete against each other with a clear measure of their strengths and weaknesses.
This is probably best explained by an example. Let’s say you are creating a trading card based on musicians of a certain genre of music. Let’s say you selected the pop music genre. How would you go about creating a trading card game where people could use them to compete?
It would be easy to add statistics to your favorite musician like the number of songs or album they have produced or the number of number one hits they have. The buyers of your trading card game could then use these statistics about your musician to play their card games.
But what if you added a simple computational statistic in your trading cards? What if you computed how many songs a musician has produced and compare it to the number of hit songs they have?
You can then produce a simple point system to determine which musician produces the most hits per songs produced. The buyer of your musician trading cards would then get a more clearer idea of which musicians are really more productive.
Your trading cards would then become not only mere trading cards, but could also be used as a reference by people to determine who among a group of people, characters and objects are really the better ones. You just created a new use for your trading cards.
There is a great tendency for many people to collect things of all sorts. Serious people who collect things are called “Collectors,” while the people who have an uncontrollable compulsion to collect are called “Hoarders.”
The same goes for trading cards. There are collectors and hoarders of trading cards. Again, this must be the reason why Pokemon trading cards are so profitable for its owners, Nintendo. Sales of Pokemon related products continued to surge yearly.
The company posted its largest profit margin to date in 2021. It has an operating profit of US$ 254 million while its net profit was US$ 170 million. This means that for each Pokemon product they sold, they average a 67% profit.
This means that Pokemon as a product is a very profitable. This must be due to the fact that the company managed to entice the desire of people to compete and collect as well. Not to mention the fact that the anime series by itself is very delightful.
According to a Forbes article, the most expensive Pokemon trading card sells for more than US$ 2,000. This expensive collectable trading card has the Charizard Pokemon character.
You might think that only anime, sports stars, cars, ships and similar things would sell as trading cards. You might also think that due to intellectual property laws and copyright laws, you cannot use popular characters and objects in the trading card game you are making.
This is very important considering that you are essentially pitting characters and objects against each other. The owners of these characters and objects may not like it if you put them in a bad light when making your comparison.
Let us assume for example that you are making trading cards based off popular sports cars from different manufacturers. The manufacturers of these sports cars may not like it if you categorize their car as slower than another car.
As you can see, making trading cards using characters and objects that are not your own can be a very thorny issue. It may even come to a point where an owner of a character or object may legally prevent you from using their property.
This is the reason why it is best to steer away from creating trading cards based on characters and objects that you don’t own. Do not worry. There are still many characters and objects that you can safely use in the trading cards you intend to produce.
One example of a group of objects that would be great as trading cards would be the elements of the Periodic Table. I have seen a few images of such trading cards online, but you can use your own creativity to still make unique ones.
The beauty of these trading cards is that you can sell them to schools and universities. These trading cards can be used as instructional materials to make students more familiar with the periodic table.
But these trading cards are not only useful as tabletop gaming or educational materials, they can also be used as handy reference materials. For example, a chemist may be out in an area where there is no internet access. He also doesn’t have a chemistry book to guide him if ever a chemical formula idea comes in his mind.
If he has a deck of these playing cards with him, he can use them as handy reference materials even without the use of an internet and a chemistry book. Imagine also if we have trading cards for edible jungle plants and trees.
A person walking in the jungle would have a handy reference should they find themselves in a situation where they need to know which of the plants and trees in their part of jungle is edible. Since trading cards must contain only the necessary information needed, they can be more handy than a book.
The same goes for medicine products. My mother still uses an old MIMS (Monthly Index of Medical Specialities) book to self medicate her and us on the not so serious sicknesses we sometimes have.
If you look at a MIMS book of medicines, you would find that it could easily be translated into trading cards. These medicine related trading cards are very useful for people to know more about the more common medicines available.
I don’t know the legal technicalities of creating trading cards based off the information on books and freely available information online, but you can see that there is a definite need for such trading cards.
Imagine if your children would be away from your house for an extended period of time. One of the most common sickness that people usually have when they are in stress is a headache. I know of a couple of over the counter medicines to treat this ailment.
But what if the common medicines I take for a headache is not available? What would I do then? If I have a stack of trading cards that are specifically designed for common ailments such as headaches, I would have more knowledge of which alternative medicines to take.
A quick online scan would reveal that Greek Mythology trading cards already exist in many forms. From professionally made trading cards to DIY and simple home made trading cards made by children, the forms just depends on one’s imagination.
As these trading cards prove, there are characters and objects based on media-entertainment that can be used freely without the need for intellectual property legal considerations. The only thing that you need is a creative and an imaginary mind.
Let us say that you created flip top and chess versions of the Trojan War. Not only would your trading cards be different and unique, but they would have served other purposes such as board game pieces and Chess pieces.
Trading cards are made mostly out of paper which is good news for a would-be trading card entrepreneur. All you need are inexpensive computer, printer, paper cutter and a laminator as tools and equipment.
There are plenty of YouTube video tutorials on how to make your own trading cards. You can for example simply type the YouTube search keywords “creating trading cards” and you would be shown by YouTube a couple of videos on how to create one.
One of the best videos I found on YouTube which shows the most basic and cheapest setup for creating your own trading cards is this:
YouTube Video: How To Make Laminated Print and Play Cards
Even though the man in the video used only the most basic of tools and supplies, he still managed to create professional looking trading cards which are worthy enough to be priced at a premium, especially since they are just limited releases.
The best market for trading cards would be collectors. Imagine if you can convince a matchbox toy car collector to buy more matchboxes from you if you give him a free promo gift of matchbox trading cards.
The same goes for other items like fine wine, sports cars, watches, antiques, anime figures and other similar collectible items. You might even entice a cash strapped amateur collector to just buy the trading cards themselves.
I for example would not consider collecting matchbox car toys anymore. I have outgrown them. Besides, I have no space in my small house to accommodate them. I don’t even have the time to clean them regularly for dust.
But I would gladly buy a matchbox toy trading cards. Not only is this a cheaper option for a buyer like me, but it also fits my lifestyle. The same goes for collecting anime figures which are harder to collect and maintain. I may not buy anime figures anymore, but I still like seeing pictures of them.
Another option you could explore would be digital trading cards. Let’s face it. A lot of paper based products are being converted to digital. Even board games and trading cards have digital versions already.
But what if you could sell more useful trading cards not only meant for gamers but for serious thinking adults? Imagine if you could have digital trading cards that could also be used as work tools?
How about trading cards based on financial instruments like stocks? These digital trading cards can be updated regularly to show the most recent statistics about them. Not only would these trading cards be useful as training tools for investors, but they would be real finance tools.
How about trading cards that display the economic facts about a country? These data could be the population, Gross Domestic Product (GDP), external debt and so on. These trading cards would make good economic tools for anyone involved in international relations.
Trading cards are treated as merely tabletop paper toys by most people who are mainly gamers, but give them a lot of creative and imaginary thinking and they would be a treasure throve of informational products.
People just need to understand that trading cards have a big selling point. They entice the competitor, collector and the curiosity in us. Just think of what good we can get with trading cards once they feature the proper characters and objects.
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