TOP 10 Most Valuable Pokémon Cards from Paradox Rift

Top 10 paradox rift cards

If Scarlet & Violet—151 was a set with nostalgic but mostly weak cards, Paradox Rift is the complete opposite.

The fourth primary set in the Scarlet & Violet Series, and the final Pokémon release of 2023, brings plenty of new gameplay options for players. However, it doesn’t offer much for pure collectors, especially when compared to the standards of Pokémon sets in 2023. While there are nearly 50 new alternate art cards, the featured Pokémon on those cards may not have the same popularity as Pikachu, Eevee, Charizard, or other fan-favorites that typically take the spotlight in sets.

Meanwhile, the pull rates in Paradox Rift are slightly less generous than in previous Scarlet & Violet sets. This implies that individuals interested in Pokémon like Roaring Moon and Iron Valiant may need to spend more on average to acquire these cards. This, in turn, raises the prices of these sought-after cards. Simultaneously, the emphasis on players, who are generally more price-sensitive, compared to collectors, contributes to pushing those prices down.

Let’s witness these dynamics in action by examining price points derived from actual sales on the TCGplayer marketplace. Here are the most valuable Pokémon cards in Paradox Rift.

#10 Golisopod ex (Special Illustration Rare)

The Generation VII Pokémon Golisopod might not be among the top 100 most popular Pokémon, and its power can’t rival meta-defining Pokémon like Iron Hands ex. However, as a Special Illustration Rare in a set lacking collector-focused cards, Golisopod ex 246 has overshadowed many lower-rarity cards in Paradox Rift.

This marks Oku’s fourth card, and their art style, characterized by dense, intensely detailed scenes dominated by a single hue, adds a unique touch. It’ll be intriguing to see the direction they take in future illustrations.

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#9 Tapu Koko ex (Special Illustration Rare)

Jerky’s cool art style makes Tapu Koko ex 247 super valuable. Look at that orange sun in a pink sky! Jerky just started drawing for Pokémon cards this year. They made awesome cards like Lumineon V and a rare Pidgeot ex. His Tropius card is underrated. Jerky has drawn 17 Pokémon cards already and is getting lots of requests. We hope they keep drawing in 2024.

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#8 Parasol Lady (Special Illustration Rare)

parasol lady

En Morikura deserves full credit for this card’s popularity. Notice the rainbow reflected in the woman’s eyes? See the light refracting in the water droplet at the end of her umbrella? It’s these details that elevate a seemingly ordinary card, named after a generic NPC, into one of the priciest cards in a Pokémon set.

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#7 Altaria ex (Special Illustration Rare)

altaria ex

Altaria may not match the power of other Pokémon ex in Paradox Rift, but that’s irrelevant. Just admire the art! The coastline stretching to the horizon, framed by clouds as fluffy as Altaria’s wings, with Wingull flying below for scale. Altaria ex is a worthy successor to Dragonite V from Evolving Skies, and any card with such beauty will always find admirers.

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#6 Professor Sada's Vitality (Special Illustration Rare)

Professor Sada and Professor Turo both have cards named after them in Paradox Rift. Sada’s card is the superior choice—not just for the waifu effect (though that certainly helps), but also because it’s much more powerful. Drawing cards and accelerating Energy are the two best actions in the Pokémon TCG, and when a card lets you do both simultaneously, you should definitely take notice.

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#6 Groudon (Illustration Rare)


Paradox Rift notably lacks the types of Pokémon that collectors typically favor: Generation I Pokémon, Eeveelutions, and legendaries from Generation IV or earlier. Groudon is one of the rare exceptions, which is why it stands out as the only Illustration Rare on this list.

The fact that the card looks fantastic doesn’t hurt. Groudon has the ability to shape the land, and no other Pokémon card has portrayed that as dramatically as this one, with lava flows extending into the sea while volcanic ash darkens the sky. Fans of Groudon have been eagerly awaiting a card as stunning as this.

#5 Garchomp ex (Special Illustration Rare)

Garchomp is exceptionally effective at hitting Benched Pokémon, comparable to Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX. Until the rotation next year, players can include both in their deck. This combination is formidable, especially considering how Garchomp’s Hydro Lander attack aids in recovering Energy discarded by Urshifu’s G-Max Rapid Flow.

Regrettably, Oswaldo KATO’s illustration for Tera Garchomp lacks excitement. It lacks a dramatic pose, unique art style, or a fantastic location found in other Special Illustration Rares. I initially mistook it for an Ultra Rare until I double-checked the rarity symbol. Nonetheless, Garchomp is a recognizable Pokémon, thanks to Cynthia’s popularity, making this card desirable for a significant minority of collectors.

#4 Iron Hands ex (Special Illustration Rare)

Paradox Rift introduces more powerful Pokémon than any previous Scarlet & Violet set, and Iron Hands ex stands out as one of the most formidable. Its effect, allowing extra Prize cards with Amp You Very Much, brings back memories of powerful attacks like Altered Creation-GX, making low-HP single-Prize Pokémon riskier. The attack’s low damage and challenging Energy requirements serve as checks, but decks overcoming these hurdles gain a significant advantage from Iron Hands ex.

In terms of price, Iron Hands’ popularity and Toshinao Aoki’s artwork are influential factors. Hariyama hasn’t featured on a card with a double-digit price tag since 2005, indicating the potential value of Iron Hands. While Aoki’s illustration tells a story, it may lack the immediate «wow» factor sought by collectors.

#3 Gholdengo ex (Special Illustration Rare)

In any other set, Gholdengo ex would have no competition for the title of strongest card. With a draw Ability and an attack that deals unlimited damage for just a single attachment, Gholdengo ex demands respect, and it speaks to how strong the other Paradox Rift cards are that Gholdengo didn’t get as much attention in the leadup to the set’s release. Akira Komayama’s quirky illustration helps push the price of Gholdengo ex above other Secret Illustration Rares. Komayama can do naturalistic or surreal work, but for Gholdengo they opted for a chunky, cartoony style that fits the ridiculousness of a sentient creature made of money.

#2 Iron Valiant ex (Special Illustration Rare)

Iron Hands ex might be the most powerful Future Pokémon card in Paradox Rift, but it’s not the most expensive. That title goes to Iron Valiant ex, the face of the Future Pokémon on all Paradox Rift packaging.

Iron Valiant has more going for it. It seems to be a future version of Gallade or Gardevoir, especially the latter, which is well-known and has valuable cards. The Tachyon Bits Ability encourages strategic builds and can potentially secure a turn 1 victory. Plus, kantaro’s dazzling illustration features Iron Valiant and other future Pokémon against a sunset backdrop, resembling a synth-pop band. What’s not to love?


#1 Roaring Moon ex (Special Illustration Rare)

The Special Illustration Rare version of Roaring Moon ex stands out as the most valuable Pokémon card in Paradox Rift, thanks to its striking artwork and immense power.

Capable of knocking out any Pokémon as early as turn 1 (when going second), Roaring Moon ex competes with powerful Evolution Pokémon like Charizard ex and Gardevoir ex. While not invincible—inflicting 200 damage on yourself and managing three Energy can be challenging with a bad draw—the instant KO poses a significant threat to decks that relied on high-HP Pokémon to take Prizes without fear.

Ryota Murayama’s illustration vividly captures the power and ferocity of Roaring Moon while creating a sense of place. The other ancient Pokémon in the frame aren’t static; they flinch in fear from Roaring Moon’s roar. Modern Pokémon collectors appreciate art that breathes life not only into individual Pokémon but into the entire Pokémon world.

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