Is it Christmas or close to the Holiday Season? No, it’s not. It’s the middle of summer, but my yearning for Advent Calendars is unwavering. I didn’t get many Advent Calendars as a kid, so maybe this longing is just following me into my adult years as I chase after various childhood experiences and joys that I missed out on.
Over the years, Advent Calendars have turned from simple chocolates into more intricate experiences, offering toys and other small goodies from different franchises.
Typically Advent Calendars, also known as Countdown Calendars, are used to count down from the first day of December until you reach Christmas. You’re supposed to open one door daily, but if you’re impatient and overly excited, you can rip them all open at once and revel in your new goods.
Generally, you pay for not only the surprises in your calendar but the experience, which can lead to many people feeling as though they’ve been shorted by the calendar or scammed out of their money. There is a way to avoid being scammed out of your money for pokemon Advent Calendars, however, and it mainly involves comparison and reading this article.
Many of these calendars market themselves for children and kids to play with. Still, the truth is that people of all ages enjoy Pokemon. Thus, people of all ages would enjoy these Advent Calendars. The main problem is ensuring you get your money’s worth out of your purchase.
The Bottom Line
Because Nintendo is very passionate about copyright and fighting IP Theft, it becomes difficult for fans to put out their creations and keep them up. There are a few fan-made Pokemon Advent Calendars on the market.
Still, the majority I could find being offered were low-quality toys you might encounter as a prize from a cereal box, tossed inside of cheap organza bags, being sold for far too much money. Still, that doesn’t mean that everything is like that, and I was able to find a real gem.
The market for Pokemon Advent Calendars leaves slim pickings. There is little substitute for the real, officially licensed, and endorsed products, but they come with hefty price tags.
Our Top Picks – At A Glance
Official Advent Calendars
- 2021 Deluxe Holiday Calendar
- 2021 Pokemon Holiday Calendar
- 2021 Pokemon Halloween Countdown Calendar
- 2021 Funko Pop Advent Calendar
Fan-made Advent Calendar
- ShugulupSketches Starter Pokemon Advent Calendar Stuffers
- TCCHRISTMASSHOP Advent Trading Card Calendar
Quality – The product needs to be made of a higher-quality material with a high standard in the manufacturing process. The paint jobs need to look nice, and the material should feel nice.
Availablity – The calendars must be available for purchase, not for scalped prices.
Pokemon ONLY – The products available in these calendars must be oriented toward Pokemon alone. There cannot be random trinkets and goodies with little or nothing to do with Pokemon.
Price – Price is something I have considered for these Advent Calendars. The quality of the products you are receiving should make the price tag on these calendars worth it, rather than making the buyer feel like they are a victim of a scam. All prices listed below are in USD.
Official Advent Calendars
This is one of the more expensive Calendars, but the figurines are just downright adorable. Not every piece of the Advent Calendar is “worth it,” but it feels like they cheaped out on the accessories and the pop-up play kit. Regardless, the adorable figurines save this kit and make it one of the best, even if I wish it came with more figures.
Price: Amazon is selling this calendar for $59.99, though it is currently on sale for $44.46.
- 16 popular Pokemon figurines with a unique pearly-iridescent finish
- Cheaper than buying the figurines individually
- Several of the figurines are winter-themed, offering unique figures and poses.
- Two articulated deluxe figurines, which offers more flexibility for posing and play.
- The pop-up play set has a button you can push, playing a short tune and twinkling the lights on the Christmas tree.
- The 18 accessories and the reusable pop-up display are all made of cardboard.
- The accessories are scattered throughout the days and are small, which makes them easy to lose if you take the calendar one day at a time.
- Occasional review for poor quality control or missing items. These reviews are few and far between, however.
Yes, Pokemon came out with a deluxe and non-deluxe edition calendar for the same price. The most significant difference between them, aside from this one not having the pop-up playset, is that the regular calendar has different figures and, aside from Pikachu, none are winter-themed.
Price: $59.99, though it is currently on sale for $35.04.
- Less cardboard waste.
- There are different figurines from the deluxe edition, most of which are some of my favorites.
- Aside from the single Pikachu, figurines can be year-round.
- Figures have a special pearlescent finish.
- Although I also counted it as a pro, I will also count it as a con: fewer of the figurines are Winter and Holiday themed.
- Just as expensive as the deluxe edition for less product.
- It does not come with “deluxe figurines” that are poseable.
Out of the ordinary from Christmas Advent Calendars, Nintendo offered a Halloween-themed Advent Calendar in 2021, counting down until the 13th of October, or if timed right, until Halloween, the figures shown are adorable and, for the most part, Halloween-themed. As a massive fan of Mimikyu, I was thrilled to see the little creature included.
Price: $19.99 when purchased through GameStop.
- Adorable figurines with a special pearlescent finish.
- A fourth of the price for the Deluxe Holiday Advent Calendar.
- Perfectly Halloween-themed.
- It can be challenging to find for a reasonable price, let alone at all.
- The accessories are made out of cardboard.
- Not as many doors as a Christmas/Holiday-themed Advent Calendar.
If you don’t like Funko Pops, you will not like this calendar. If you do, however, this is one of the better Pokemon-themed Advent Calendars. You get more figurines out of each box, with 24 pocket-sized vinyl figurines attached to base stands, so you don’t have to deal with the constant problem Funko Pops have of falling over and scuffing themselves.
Price: $59.99, currently on sale for $29.74.
- 24 Funko Pops and no cardboard accessories taking up space.
- They are absolutely tiny, standing at a grand height of four centimeters.
- Cheaper than buying Funko Pops individually.
- Small height makes them perfect for collection and display without clutter. If you have a huge Funko Pop collection, they’re ideal for staggering between the bigger models.
- There is no special finish or “seasonal version” of the Pokemon.
- The special Funkos you can get in this box are a solid silver color. Honestly, the silver versions aren’t as appealing as the regular version.
- They aren’t keychains and are meant for display only.
Some exceptions had to be made for the fan-made calendars to allow for a bit more wiggle-room in the selection process. While previously I sought out calendars that were only Pokemon, for fan-made, I had to abandon that criterion, opting for something that had Pokemon as an option or the majority of the content.
However, this does not mean I readily accepted calendars of questionable quality and care. For the following fan-made calendars, I chose them based on the amount of care put into them, far more than the officially-licensed advent calendars.
Only one Fan-made “Advent Calendar” really stood out as exemplary among the rest of the others. Created by ShugulupSketches on Etsy, these unique and precious starter Pokemon buttons stole my heart. Although the calendar portion is not included, the 25 hand-illustrated buttons are adorable calendar stuffers. You can also get a matching sticker sheet for an extra five dollars.
- Buttons Only: $25
- Buttons and Stickers: $30
- No repeats – you are guaranteed something new every day.
- No surprises – you know exactly how many buttons you’re getting and what they will look like.
- Buttons are more than just toys. You can put these on display and wear them like accessories, giving them more functionality and use than a figurine.
- This is a “Calendar Stuffer,” meaning that these adorable buttons don’t actually come with a physical Advent Calendar. If purchased, you will need to buy a reusable calendar to go with them.
- No surprises – although this can be a perk, it takes some of the joy of purchasing them for yourself.
- Not the best for young children, as the buttons are sharp.
This is one of the only Advent Calendars I could find for Pokemon trading cards. Although the etsy seller, TCCHRISTMASSHOP, offers more than just Pokemon trading cards for the calendar, the product is beautifully made and is reusable. You get a new trading card every day, and then, on day twenty-four, you get an entire pack of cards (double the openings)!
- You get three and a half booster packs worth of cards.
- The cards come in hard-shell protective cases.
- Unlike previous calendars, this one is reusable.
- The calendar itself is not Pokemon-themed.
- More expensive than buying the official Pokemon Advent Calendars.
Question: Why wasn’t the 2022 Calendar included in this article?
Answer: It hasn’t been released yet, so there isn’t any way to determine if it is one of the best or not. Unlike the previous years, however, Pokemon is working on a trading card calendar, promising new cards and surprises every day.
TCG booster packs and various non-card surprises will be available every day. If you buy the Holiday Calendar, you’re guaranteed a few foil promotional cards and a pair of Pokemon V and VMAX cards. However, the information about the Pokemon TCG: Holiday Calendar remains scarce.
Question: Are there any trading card Advent Calendars?
Answer: Yes, there are, but they are incredibly difficult to find for purchase. If you’re looking into getting a Pokemon Trading Card Game Advent Calendar, I would wait until the 2022 Holiday Calendar is released, or just buy a few booster packs and make your own Advent Calendar. Or, you can have someone else make the Calendar for you; that way, you continue to have a surprise ready for yourself.
Question: Why did you not include the Cosmic Eclipse TCG Advent Calendar?
Answer: These trading card calendars were sent directly to YouTubers and Pokemon influencers. As amazing as it would have been if they were available for purchase, they were never released publically. Instead, we were coerced into living vicariously through anyone who got them.
Question: Why are there not more fan-made products and holiday Calendars listed and recommended?
Answer: Nintendo is fiercely protective of its Intellectual Property and is prone to sending cease and desist letters to artists who may monetize Pokemon-related products. So, while there are a few fan-produced and supported projects, the stuff that could qualify as some of the “best” is few and far between.
It is also possible, however, that if this article wasn’t written in summer, plenty of fan-made Advent Calendars would be available for purchase. The best way is just to keep your eyes peeled when the seasons roll around. Some of the best purchases you can make are from small businesses rather than mega-corporations.
To Sum It Up
Pokemon Advent Calendars are expensive, but so are the figurines alone or in packs of eight. Advent Calendars offer the experience of little gifts you get to open each day in the Holiday Season, slowly building the suspense before you can reach the big deal of gifts and fun.
They may cost a pretty penny, but the figurines are just too dang cute. Whether you’re a collector or not, if you like Pokemon, it’s pretty tempting to get them. The allure of a special finish and your favorite Pokemon in seasonal attire can be tough to resist.
In the end, however, the best Pokemon Advent Calendars are the only ones on the market right now. If you think you can make something better than what is currently in existence, I dare you to try.
I, and many others, would love to see more fan-made Advent Calendars enter the market, counting down to events other than Christmas. This is a call and a challenge to all artists: one up Nintendo and show them that we want to see more and to see better.