Let's Play Pokémon (TCG)

Let's Play Pokémon
Lets Play Pokemon cover.png
ISBN: 0786917636
Published: May 2000
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
Author: Michael Mikaelian, Will McDermott, and Stan Brown

Let's Play Pokémon is an official guidebook to the Pokémon Trading Card Game published by Wizards of the Coast. Similar to the guidebook Pokémon Made Simple! released a few months previously, it is a how-to guide for the TCG designed for parents and their children. It was written by Michael Mikaelian, Will McDermott, and Stan Brown; the same team that worked on Pokémon Made Simple!.


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Let's Play Pokémon

Learn to Play

After a brief foreword by co-author Will McDermott, the book opens with an introductory chapter on the Trading Card Game. The book introduces the principles of how a TCG works and follows with explanations of concepts specific to the Pokémon TCG, such as Theme Decks, gameplay setup, how to identify attributes of Pokémon cards, evolution, etc; and the basics of how to play the game, explaining concepts like Weakness and Resistance, the use of Energy cards, attacking, and the like. It also provides details on how a game can be won or lost: by collecting all Prize cards, Knocking Out all of the opponent's Pokémon, or running out of cards to draw from the deck.

Sample Game

This chapter provides a step-by-step walkthrough of an example game of the Pokémon TCG. In this demonstration, the winner ("Elyse") defeats her opponent ("Bryan") by Knocking Out enough of Bryan's Pokémon to collect all Prize cards.

Advanced Rules

This chapter covers more advanced concepts such as Pokémon Powers and Special Conditions.

Building Your Own Deck

This chapter explains the basics of building a deck suitable for play in the TCG. It outlines the basic rules (60 cards exactly; no more than four of the same card excluding Energy cards) and provides suggestions for building and customising a deck. It contains strategies for building a deck from scratch as well as for customising the preconstructed Theme Decks.

Advanced Strategy

Play Like a Master

This chapter reviews more in-depth strategies, covering general strategies such as the most efficient use of Energy cards, when to Retreat, when to Evolve, and management of Benched Pokémon. It also reviews strategies centered around specific Trainer cards.

Mastering Deck Building

This chapter reviews specific deck building tips, covering popular cards and strategies that frequently appeared in tournaments at the time. It also includes a type chart detailing all the possible Weaknesses and Resistances of each TCG type, as well as a general list of advantages and disadvantages to each type. Finally, this chapter includes a listing of "Decks to Beat", featuring deck lists for Haymaker, Damage Control and Raindance, based on three popular deck archetypes of the time.

Using Card Combos

Mastering Collecting

Parents Guide to Pokémon

Pokémon for Parents

Trading for Parents

Learning from Pokémon

Pokémon TCG League

Pokémon References

Evolution Chart

This section shows which currently released Pokémon cards are capable of evolving, what their possible evolutions are (for example, Squirtle is capable of evolving into Wartortle or Dark Wartortle), and which Pokémon do not currently evolve. It also shows which expansion sets different Pokémon can be found in.

Card Encyclopedia

This section contains the full text of every Pokémon card released in Base Set, Jungle, Fossil and Team Rocket, as well as all Wizards Black Star Promos which were released at the time of publication. Cards are presented in alphabetical order by Pokémon species and organised by type, followed by Energy cards and Trainer cards.

Frequently Asked Questions

This section provides answers to questions frequently asked to Wizards of the Coast regarding both the play and collecting of the Pokémon Trading Card Game. According to the creators of the book, the questions listed in this chapter are the ones which were most frequently asked of Wizards of the Coast.


The closing section of the book features a Appendix:glossary of terms, covering official terminology, fan terminology, and terminology used in the Pokémon Trading Card Game League.

Publications relating to the Pokémon Trading Card Game
Strategy guides: Pokémon Trading Card Game Strategy GuideThe Official Pokémon Trading Card Game Guide
Pokémon Trading Card Game Player's GuidePokémon Trading Card Game Fossil Expansion Player's Guide
Pokémon Trading Card Game Volume 3: Team RocketPokémon Made Simple!Let's Play Pokémon
Team Rocket Strategy GuideGym Heroes Strategy GuideGym Challenge Strategy Guide
Platinum Player's GuidePlasma Storm Player's GuidePlasma Blast Player's GuideXY Player's Guide
Quick Guide to Fire-Type PokémonFurious Fists Player's GuidePhantom Forces Player's GuidePrimal Clash Player's Guide
Roaring Skies Player's GuideAncient Origins Player's GuideBREAKthrough Player's GuideBREAKpoint Player's Guide
Fates Collide Player's GuideGenerations Player's GuideSteam Siege Player's GuideEvolutions Player's Guide
Sun & Moon Player's GuideGuardians Rising Player's GuideBurning Shadows Player's GuideThe Making of Shining Legends
Crimson Invasion Player's GuideUltra Prism Player's GuideForbidden Light Player's GuideCelestial Storm Player's Guide
Dragon Majesty Player's GuideDragon Majesty: Dragons Then and NowLost Thunder Player's GuideTeam Up Player's Guide
Unbroken Bonds Player's GuideUnified Minds Player's GuideHidden Fates Player's GuideCosmic Eclipse Player's Guide
Sword & Shield Player's GuideRebel Clash Player's GuideDarkness Ablaze Player's GuideVivid Voltage Player's Guide
Shining Fates Player's GuideBattle Styles Player's GuideChilling Reign Player's GuideEvolving Skies Player's Guide
Celebrations Player's Guide
Collectors' guides: Beckett Unofficial Guide to Pokémon: 2008 Price GuideBeckett Unofficial Guide To Pokémon Diamond & Pearl
Collecting Pokémon: An Unauthorized Handbook and Price GuidePokémon Collector's Value Guide
Pokémon Unofficial Card Collector's GuideUnofficial Beckett Pokémon Collector Price Guide
Magazines: Beckett Pokémon Unofficial CollectorMonthly Coin Toss: Pokémon Card MagazinePokémon Official Magazine
PoJo's Unofficial Pokémon News & Price Guide MonthlyPokémon Card Fan Club
Manga: Pokémon Card GB The ComixHow I Became a Pokémon CardHimemaru: Pokémon Card ExplorerAim to Be a Card Master!!
Pokémon Card Game Battle ComicExciting Victory! Pokémon Card Game!!Let's Play the Pokémon Card Game XY!
Let's Play the Pokémon Card Game! Sun & Moon ArcLet's Play the Pokémon Card Game! Sword & Shield Arc
Let's Play the Pokémon Card Game! Scarlet & Violet Arc
Video game guides: Official Pokémon TCG Perfect GuidePokémon Card GB Final Tactical BookPokémon Card GB Official Guidebook
Pokémon Card GB2 Official GuidebookPokémon TCG: Official Nintendo Player's Guide
Pokémon TCG: Prima's Official Strategy Guide
Other: Pokémon Card Official Book 2000Pokémon Card Game BW National Illustrated Encyclopedia
Pokémon Card Game BW WorkbookIllust Story

  This article is part of both Project Merchandise and Project TCG, Bulbapedia projects that, together, aim to write comprehensive articles on the Pokémon Merchandise and TCG, respectively.