What’s up, PTCGO Store readers? I hope you’re all having a wonderful time browsing this site, and since you stumbled upon this article, I’m more than happy to help you out on your Pokémon journey! If you want to learn what PTCGO is, how to download it, and how to use it - you’re in the right place! Let’s start by getting you registered for a Pokémon Account!

1. Registering for a Pokémon Account

Head over to the official Pokémon website https://www.pokemon.com and click on the green “log in” on the right side of the page. If you already have an account, you can skip ahead, or you can join the Pokémon Trainer Club by creating an account. Click on the create an account button to start that process. You’ll want to make sure that all of your information is accurate, that you follow each step, and end it by verifying your email! You’ll now be able to effectively login to the official Pokémon website, and this login will also be the same when you download PTCGO. Let’s download this game!

2. How to Download PTCGO?

Play the PTCGO

The way you download PTCGO will depend on the device that you’re downloading it for. It is available on PC, Mac, iPad, and some larger screen Android devices. On the official Pokémon website https://www.pokemon.com you can click the “play button featuring two red cards” near the top center part of the site. There will be a button that says “Play the Pokémon TCG Online,” and you can go ahead and click that link to show all of the links to download the game. Make sure you meet the system requirements shown at the bottom of the page and click the right download link for your system. Alternatively, you can go to your respective App Store (Apple or Google) and download the game for your iPad / Android device. Follow all of the instructions to download it on the installer (if applicable) and load up the app for the first time.

3. Pokemon TCG Online Basics

When you log in to PTCGO for the first time, it will prompt a walkthrough of how the game works. It periodically changes, but it will likely feature you learning how to play the game with a preconstructed deck against the computer AI. Feel free to explore the app and read all of the pop-up tips to help you understand everything as easy as possible. The app can be broken up into a few categories. I’ll break those down to help you better understand the functions of this app.

4. The Play Button

The Versus

This is the first button at the top of the app’s home screen and features a variety of ways to play Pokémon. Let me explain those!

4.1 Trainer Challenge

You can select the League and your opponent and challenge them with any of the PTCGO default preconstructed decks or Theme decks. You can play these opponents multiple times to earn free cards and packs to help build your collection.

4.2 Versus

You can choose any deck that you have on Pokemon TCG Online and play in any format that you like. You can select online decks that you’ve created and play against real opponents to earn free products such as sought-after Full Art cards, packs, and other in-game items.

4.3 Events

These are in-game tournaments that use Event Tickets to enter. You can earn Event Tickets by playing on Versus and earning them for completing games. These events offer in-game prize support for all participants and offer PTCGO pack prizes for top finishers.

4.4 Tutorial

If you need a refresher on how to play the Pokémon TCG or if it's your first time, this is the place to go! Try your luck against the computer AI with a preconstructed deck and learn how to play Pokémon.

5. The Three Cards Button

This is the second button at the top of the app’s home screen and features a variety of ways for you to interact with your collection. Let me explain those.

5.1 Collection

You can sort through your owned and not owned collection of Pokemon TCG Online codes to see all of the amazing cards. You can treat it as a gallery, as a way to search for cards that exist, as a way to find niche cards for a deck, or as a checklist to try and acquire what you want. There are many ways to do all of these, and the best way is to play around with it.

5.2 Online Deck Manager

You can see all of the decks you’ve built, the theme decks you’ve acquired, and build new decks for a variety of formats. If you’re anything more than a collector, this is likely going to be the place where you spend the most time in-app building those masterful creations!

5.3 Trade

We don’t always pull the cards we want out of Pokemon TCGO packs, and this is why the app has a place to trade for cards that you want. You can see public offers to see what others are offering, you can create a trade for others to view publicly, you can trade directly with friends in the game, and you can see the trades that you’ve completed. I recommend checking out ptcgozone.com/ptcgoprices/ to determine the value of cards before trading.

6. The Face Button


This is the third button at the top of the app’s home screen and features ways to explore the customisation of your avatar and other customisable.

6.1 Avatar

You can create your Pokemon TCG Online avatar to be what you want it to be. Maybe you always wear a goofy hat and a unique hairstyle - you can do that! There is some in-game apparel that you can buy from the in-game shop or trade for them on public trades.

6.2 Challenges

PTCGO is always offering fun ways to acquire some free products in the game! You can see what challenges are available for you to complete by playing games on the Versus ladder and Events. We talked about earlier how to play.

6.3 Statistics

If you’ve ever wanted to know how many cards you’ve drawn or how many days of your left you’ve spent playing this game, this is the right area for you. This is more or less a personal high scoreboard for you based on a few metrics.

7. The Shopping Cart Button

This is the fourth button at the top of the app's home screen and features the shop - the place to spend your in-game coins.

7.1 Shop

This is the area for you to use your PokeCoins to purchase Pokemon TCG theme decks, booster packs, and other gameplay items. All of these can be purchased using in-game currency, but they can’t be purchased using your real money (PTCGO is free to use in-game) but if you want to build up your online deck you can always get yours Pokemon TCG codes at PTCGO Store. You can earn PokeCoins by playing on the Versus ladder, playing in Events, and completing Challenges.

8. The Present Button

This is the fifth button at the top of the app’s home screen that features the PTCGO code redeemer. This button is usually only available on Mac and PC. If you’re on an iPad or Android device, this button might not exist.

8.1 Redeem Pokemon TCG Online Codes

If you have any PTCGO codes from opening physical packs or you’ve purchased some from the website, you can put them in the text box. You can scan them with the QR reader (your webcam must have a minimum resolution of 1.5MP), manually type them in, or copy / paste them into the text box (all of this options are available at PTCGO Store). If you’re on an iPad or Android device, you’ll likely need to login to the official Pokémon website https://www.pokemon.com, click the “play button featuring two red cards” near the top center part of the site, and click on the “Redeem Pokémon TCG Online Codes on Pokemon.com”.

9. The Pokémon Trading Card Game Online Button

This is the sixth button at the top of the app’s home screen that can take you back to the app's homepage.

9.1 PokeCoins

These are the in-game currency. You can earn them by competing on the Versus ladder and Events.

9.2 Event Tickets

These are used to play in Events. You can earn them by competing on the Versus ladder and Events.

10. The Gear Button

This is the seventh button at the far top right of the app’s home screen that features different settings in the app.

10.1 Settings

You can quickly change the way you sort your Pokémon while playing PTCGO, change your performance settings, control the volume, and download card assets.

10.2 Help

This will prompt “Support”, “Pokémon Rules”, and “Pokémon Tutorials”. If you’ve been wondering how the rules of the game work or need any other assistance, you’ll likely find that here.

10.3 Pokémon Terms of Use

We always agree to something, and this app isn’t any different. So make sure you carefully read through the Terms of Use to make sure you’re following all of the rules of the app.

10.4 Privacy Notice

We always agree to something, and this app isn’t any different. Make sure you carefully read through the Privacy Notice to make sure you’re knowledgeable about your privacy when using the app.

10.5 Exit

You can close the app or log out of the app.

11. The Three People Button

Friends List

This is the eighth button at the far top right of the app’s home screen that allows you to view your friend's list, play games with your friends, and message other players in the game.

11.1 Two People

You can add friends in-game, play with your friends in-game, or prompt a direct message with them.

11.2 Dot Dot Dot

You can directly message your friends and talk to other users about various Pokémon TCG topics here.

11.3 Mail

If you completed a trade or input PTCGO code cards into your account, there would usually be a notification here.

11.4 Building a Collection

The best way to build a collection is to determine what you’re trying to accomplish. If you only want to play this game at an ultra-casual level, maybe it's best for you only to buy theme Pokemon online decks. They contain plenty of unique cards, you can battle other users, and it’s a great way to be engaged in our Pokémon community. Perhaps that isn’t your style, and you want to open up PTCGO packs endlessly to collect complete sets - you’ll probably need to pick up some Pokemon TCG Online codes. If you’re a competitive player and looking to build the best deck, you’ll likely have a list of Pokemon code cards that you’ll want to pick up. This is where you might buy / trade for a combination of Pokémon TCG Promo Cards (also available in code form), League Battle Decks, PTCGO Packs, and more. Whichever way you want to build up your collection, you should research what you want and find out if that makes sense. I recommend reading the blogs on our website, watching YouTube content, talking to other community members on Social Media, and making some decisions yourself.

11.5 Building a Deck

Shadow Rider Calyrex Deck

There are various ways to build a deck, and it really depends on how you want to play this game. In-game, you wanna click on the three cards button at the top of the app, select deck manager, and click on “Create a New Deck”. Deck Wizard will automatically build you a deck based on two of your favorite cards from your collection, Standard / Expanded / Legacy / Unlimited all focus on you personally building a deck from scratch for a particular format, and Import allows you to copy and paste a text version of a decklist into the game. If you’re starting, Deck Wizard is a great place to automatically build a unique deck that only features cards you own. Importing a deck that you find from a YouTube video or a blog written on this website makes it easy for you to find out what cards you want to pick up, obtain them, and start playing with that exact Pokemon deck. Choosing a format and personally building a deck requires the most skill, but it’s up to you to decide how comfortable you are with the whole process. Remember to follow all deck-building rules (max of four of each card name, some cards have special rules written on them, you can play any amount of basic Energy, and 60 cards per deck) and experiment with your new deck.

Until Next Time

I hope this article has helped you understand the PTCGO basics, and I’m happy to be part of your Pokémon TCG journey! I look forward to going more in-depth about various aspects of our game, and I invite you to read those future articles too! Pokémon TCG and PTCGO are such wonderful games, we have an amazing community, and places like PTCGO Store are great! I’ll catch up with you soon!

About the Writer

Zach LesageZach Lesage
Zach Lesage is a contributing writer for PTCGO Store. As a Toronto local, he has been playing the Pokémon Trading Card Game since 2005 and creates Pokémon content as his full-time career. He creates YouTube content, coaches players to become better in-game, and provides hot takes on his Twitter. With multiple prestigious accomplishments in the game, such as the 2020 Players Cup 2 Champion and the 2020 Oceania International Championships Finalist, he has proven his success in the game. Outside of the game, he travels the world, enjoys the culture of designer streetwear, and is a professionally trained chef. You can catch him at most Pokémon events and follow him on Twitter @ZachLesagePTCG.