The 2017 Pokémon World Championships came to a conclusion on Sunday night, closing out the ninth event since its inception.
The three-day occasion began on Friday night at the Anaheim Convention Center in Orange County, California. With a $500,000 prize pool available across all tournaments and thousands of attendees, this is the biggest competitive Pokémon event out there.
There were three games that were showcased: the Trading Card Game (TCG), Pokkén Tournament and the Video Game Championships (VGC) that used the newest Nintendo titles, "Pokémon Sun" and "Moon." The top players from around the world were invited to participate, having allocated enough points throughout the competitive season to place them at the highest ranks of the international standings. Each game, in addition, had three divisions, which included Juniors, Seniors, and the most prestigious of all, Masters.
In the Masters Division of the VGC, Japan's Ryota Otsubo took on Sam Pandelis from Australia in a heated competition. Despite a stellar performance from Pandelis, leading the charge with the newly-feared Raichu, Otsubo was able to best him by the very end, thus taking first place. Along with claiming the title of champion, Otsubo also walked away with $10,000 in prize money.
The Masters Division for the TCG brought even more intensity with a duel between Naoto Suzuki from Japan and Diego Cassiraga from Argentina. What looked like the end of a fantastic run for Cassiraga transformed into a miracle win that was led by his Gardevoir. As the world champion, Cassiraga claims the top prize of $25,000.
The top-placed individuals will receive a chance to compete in the 2018 event next year, already announced to take place in Nashville, Tennessee.
Cassiraga may have won thousands of dollars for playing with cards, but you might be able to score big too if you have these rare ones.