There are very few Pokémon as famous as Charizard. This undeniably cool fire-type has such mainstream appeal that it’s become almost as much of an icon for the Pokémon franchise as good old Pikachu. As a result, there are now dozens of Charizard Pokémon cards, with new versions released every year – even to the point where some Pokémon TCG fans are a bit burned out on the original orange dragon. With so many to choose from, we’re left wondering: what are the best Charizard cards?
Now, there are multiple ways we could try to rank Charizard Pokémon cards. We could consider the most expensive and rare Pokémon cards featuring the starter. We could look at our favorite artwork. Or we could just include the most powerful Pokémon cards for the ‘mon in terms of gameplay – but given how the game’s power level has ramped up, this would likely result in a list of Charizard cards from the newest Pokémon set.
Instead, we’ve gone for a similar approach to the one taken in our best Pokémon cards guide, aiming to account for a combination of different factors, and deliver you a list of the best, most iconic Charizard Pokémon cards.
Shadowless First Edition Holo Charizard
Lets just get this one out the way first, shall we? The first English Charizard card ever printed, First Edition Charizard is one of the rarest cards out there, and widely considered to be the ‘holy grail’ of Pokémon. When we were only wee, this was the card everyone dreamed about adding to their collection. Everyone had that breathtaking moment they thought they might own the card, only to sadly realise that what they held was in fact a later printing.
Of all the Charizard Pokémon cards on the list, this is the most iconic, and hardest to get hold of. Even severely damaged versions can go for a pretty penny.
Rainbow Charizard VMAX
One of the most sought after Charizard cards of recent years, Charizard VMAX is one of the top chase cards from Shining Fates, and the rainbow version printed in the set Champion’s Fate is the rarest version of all.
Originally a Japan-exclusive promo card, awarded in tournaments – this colorful variant goes for a little more than the Shiny version. While originally touted as a $1000 card, the sheer number of Shiny VMAXs on the market means you can pick up a good quality black Charizard VMAX for under $100).
Power-wise, this is an impressive Charizard card too, not offering any fancy tricks, just devastating foes with raw strength. With 300 damage on its ultimate attack, it could knock out almost anything.
It’s fair to say that Charizard has one of the coolest shiny forms in all of Pokémon – the badass dragon just looks better in black. So it only makes sense that Shining Charizard from the 2002 Pokémon TCG expansion Neo Destiny is an incredibly sought after Charizard card. The art is just perfect, almost looking like a silhouette.
Shining Pokémon were an exciting addition to the game in the early years of the Pokémon TCG. They featured multiple energy types for their attacks, and you were limited to one copy per deck. They were rare, with pull chances listed at about 1 in 300. The result? A good quality Shining Charizard can now easily go for over $1000.
Charizard Plasma Storm
Yet another holo shiny Charizard card, this secret rare is the most valuable card from its set (Plasma Storm, 2013). A rarer reprint of a card from Boundaries Crossed, it features badass art, a cool Pokedex entry, and an attack that can whittle away at the bench. Interestingly, the card was printed wrong, displaying a Fighting energy requirement on its attack, rather than Fire.
Reshiram & Charizard GX
Charizard gets some legendary help in this tag team card with Reshiram. With multiple powerful attacks, including a GX move that can incinerate anything in your way, this card has had some competitive success, appearing in some of the best Pokémon decks in the 2019 World Championships, where it helped secure third and fourth place.
One of the most affordable Charizard cards on this list, there is of course a special rainbow variant that’s about eight times more pricy. But something about the artwork on the original speaks to us.
Charizard Gold Star Delta
There’s a darkness type Tera Charizard card featured in the new Pokémon set Obsidian Flame, but hardcore fans of this fiery boy will know that we already had a Charizard with this Pokémon card type all the way back in 2006, with the set Dragon Frontiers. Thanks to its stunning high contrast art that burst through the frame, a unique typing, and a shiny rare holo rarity, this Charizard is much-desired, and very expensive.
In terms of its actual power though, it’s a bit of a letdown. Charizard generally have a ‘discarding energy’ problem, and this one is worse than most – discarding all five of the energy required to power its ultimate the moment you use it.
Flashfire Charizard EX Pokémon Card Game Art Collection
Two years after its initial printing in Flashfire, 2014, a promo version of Charizard EX featuring art by Hitoshi Ariga was released in the September Pokémon Card Game Art Collection. Only available in Japanese, this stunning full art card shows a Charizard who’s surely just about to absolutely cook a poor Venusaur (though admittedly the leafy dinofrog seems to be giving as good as he gets).
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