Holofoil cards (also known as Holographic Foil, Foil, Holo, Reverse Holo, Reverse foil or Holographic) are a special type of card from the Pokémon Trading Card Game. Most are Pokémon cards. They are identical to their normal counterpart aside from a Holofoil effect in the picture (Holofoil) or the card background (Reverse Holofoil). A small amount of Rare () cards within each expansion are Holofoil. They may be pulled from Booster packs as the rare card, but is not guaranteed. They are rarer compared to non Holofoil rare cards.
As of the japanese Black & White collection expansion sets, a new form of rarity symbol was implemented, instead of utilizing shapes to symbolize rarity, it was replaced by letters, so replaces on Rare cards, which are all Holofoil.
As of the English Scarlet & Violet expansion set, all Rare cards are now Holofoil.
In most of the English versions of Japanese sets, cards that were originally only holofoil are given non-holofoil counterparts. The e-cards are an exception to this, as even the Japanese versions of the sets had holofoil and non-holofoil versions of cards. Only the non-holofoil versions had dot codes that could be read with the e-Reader. This was apparently because the holofoil caused complications with the dot codes. When holofoil cards have non-holofoil counterparts, the non-holofoil cards are the more common of the two, even though both are marked with the same rarity. As such, they are numbered differently within sets and generally considered different cards in terms of collectibility. In play, however, the cards operate the same, and thus are viewed mostly as the same.
Cosmos Holofoil was introduced for all Holo cards in Base Set 2 and was used for all Holo cards until Call of Legends, along with various promotional cards.
It consists of dots and circles of different sizes spread across the image of the Pokémon.
In EX Delta Species, the Holofoil rare design changed exclusively for δ Delta Species Pokémon, with the card border and Pokémon itself featuring a plain Holofoil treatment.
Tinsel Holofoil was used on standard Holo cards between Black & White until Legendary Treasures, along with various promotional cards.
It consists of horizontal stripes across the image. In Japanese Holofoil cards of these sets, the border of the card also has a tinsel Holofoil effect.
Sheen or Mirror Holofoil is used for all Holo cards from XY, and on various promotional cards.
There are differences in the pattern depending on the language of the card; Japanese Holofoil cards refract light in a diagonal direction from bottom left to top right across the entire card; Korean Holofoil cards have the same effect and direction, but only cover the image of the Pokémon; and international releases have the same effect as Japanese cards, but only cover the image, and the direction is from bottom right to top left.
Occasionally called Broken Glass or Shards, Cracked Ice Holofoil was first used for the exclusive version of the featured card in Theme Decks from the Platinum Series. Its use has continued in Theme Decks throughout the HeartGold & SoulSilver Series and into the Sword & Shield Series. Cracked Ice Holofoil has also been seen on a number of promotional cards included in Blister Packs from Platinum onwards. Certain cards, such as the English printing of Frost Rotom from Rising Rivals, display the Cracked Ice Holofoil over everything but the image of the Pokémon.
Reverse Holofoil cards are an alternative print of the cards in a set. Since Legendary Collection, one Reverse Holofoil card has been included in each booster pack. In contrast to a regular Holofoil card where the effect is applied to the picture, a Reverse Holofoil usually has the effect applied to the entire card apart from the picture, or the picture uses an alternative holo pattern, in addition to possible background patterns. A Reverse Holofoil counterpart is usually available for every card in a set, excluding Ultra Rare and Secret Rare cards, and any full-art cards.
1st Edition cards were last printed in Neo Destiny, and were ceased to be made at this point mainly due to 1st Edition prints regularly having delays, causing them to be received after the Unlimited print runs had arrived at retail. To replace these and to appeal to collectors, Legendary Collection was the first set to include Reverse Holographic cards. Wizards of the Coast used Magic: The Gathering as a basis and made a Reverse Holographic card for every single card in the set, with each booster pack containing one Reverse Holographic card, with only a few exceptions. This trend continued with all Wizards of the Coast expansions, and carried over with Nintendo's occupation of the TCG, appearing in all main expansions to the modern day.
Reverse Holofoil Patterns
This article is incomplete. Please feel free to edit this article to add missing information and complete it. Reason: images of all Reverse Holofoil patterns, for each type (including Trainers and Special Energy), for Emerging Powers to Steam Siege, Sun & Moon to Cosmic Eclipse, and Sword & Shield onwards.
The designs of Reverse Holographic cards have changed substantially since their introduction, with many sets featuring unique patterns.
Legendary Collection featured a "fireworks" design over the entire body of the card, aside from the card's artwork.
Both the Holofoil and non Holofoil rare cards had identical Reverse Holographic counterparts in Expedition Base Set (apart from the card number). Wizards of the Coast rectified this in Aquapolis and Skyridge by numbering the Holofoil cards differently (e.g., H12) and not producing Reverse Holofoils for these cards.
EX Hidden Legends's holographic pattern differed substantially from previous sets. It placed its holographic pattern inside the card's artwork, featuring an array of energy symbols placed behind the Pokémon. In the case of Rare cards, an additional foil stamp matching the Pokémon's type appeared as a faint foil symbol in the attack box.
EX FireRed & LeafGreen, similar to the prior set, featured an energy symbol holo pattern in the picture window, with a Poké Ball shape appearing as a faint foil symbol in the attack box on Rare cards.
EX Team Rocket Returns featured the same pattern as EX FireRed & LeafGreen, but with the addition of the set logo in the bottom right corner of the card's artwork. On Rare cards, Reverse Holo printings would also have gold Holofoil over the HP text, the Pokémon name, and a silver rarity symbol. This continued off and on until the start of the Diamond and Pearl era.
EX Deoxys featured a "wheel" holo pattern and the set logo in the bottom right of the card's artwork.
EX Emerald features a Poké Ball and stars holo pattern and the set logo in the bottom right of the picture window.
EX Unseen Forces features a similar pattern to EX Emerald, but with a 3D Poké Ball pattern instead and the usual set logo in the bottom right of the picture window.
EX Delta Species to EX Power Keepers feature a plain holographic Reverse Holo pattern similar to Expedition Base Set, however this pattern appears within the background of the cards' artwork (excluding the Pokémon itself) instead of on the body of the card. Additionally, the set logos are stamped in the bottom right of the artwork.
The Reverse Holofoil versions of regular Rare Holofoils still have gold Holofoil over the HP text, the Pokémon name, and a silver rarity symbol. Unlike previous sets, not all regular Rares receive gold Holofoil text if they are printed as a Reverse Holo. Reverse Holo versions of the Rare Holofoils also may feature a holo, gold card border in sets such as EX Dragon Frontiers and EX Holon Phantoms, but this is not always the case.
EX Dragon Frontiers displays the same plain holographic Reverse Holo Pattern, however instead of appearing on the background of the cards' artwork, it appears on the Pokémon themselves, similar to Shining cards.
Emerging Powers to Steam Siege feature the card's respective Type symbol in the background of the card (Poké Balls for Trainer cards, and a variant of the Colorless symbol for Special Energy cards). Steam Siege's dual-type Pokémon cards use both types' designs on either side of the split in the background.