An amazing One Piece TCG Luffy Leader card is being locked behind PSA’s exclusive subscription service

If you weren’t watching One Piece TCG social media this week, you likely missed the announcement of a new Monkey D. Luffy Leader card with full art of the entire Straw Hat crew heading to Onigashima. If you want it, you’ll have to pay for a pricey subscription service. 

The Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA) officially announced a partnership with Bandai Namco on May 9 that will bring an exclusive One Piece promo card to the grading company’s Collectors Club service. That means, if you want to get the Luffy Leader “featuring all of the Straw Hat Pirates on one card for the first time,” then you need to spend a minimum of $149.99 for a yearly subscription to PSA’s service.

PSA's exclusive One Piece products.
A One Piece cover for the PSA magazine is also on the way. Screenshot via PSA and Bandai Namco

This Luffy Leader card will only be available to PSA Collectors Club subscribers who sign by May 31. After that, it is likely gone forever and will only be available from resellers for a much higher price point considering the exclusivity of the card. 

If you are unfamiliar with the PSA Collectors Club, it essentially acts as a way for PSA to make more guaranteed money while offering discounts and other bonuses and special offers to collectors who use its grading services. This includes credit for select sellers, bulk grading deals, and a subscription to the monthly PSA Magazine. So, for hardcore card game buyers, this might be a solid deal—but for the fans who just want to collect cool One Piece products, it is a roadblock that has been widely panned and called “exceptionally lame.”

Not only is this card paywalled behind a partnership that is being questioned since Bandai is actively teaming up with a grading company that can occasionally play a role in creating higher secondary market prices and product shortages, but the main complaint is the price of exclusivity. It also doesn’t help that it is still hard to find physical One Piece TCG products at MSRP in the wild in many markets. “$150 for the cheapest plan? Maybe if I could actually buy sealed products to look for Manga-rares then this *might* have some value beyond the card. Just not worth it at all,” a concerned fan said on X (formerly Twitter)

Luffy and the Straw Hat Pirates raiding Onigashima.
This card seemingly won’t be available anywhere else. Screenshot via PSA and Bandai Namco

As an added slap to the face for One Piece players, the PSA subscription just recently jumped from $99 to $149 and this card is scheduled to ship out to collectors in July. Considering pre-orders for limited edition products on Premium Bandai can take close to a year to receive, there are plenty of fans unhappy with where Bandai is seemingly putting its product focus. 

This isn’t the end of the world for One Piece TCG product but it does set a dangerous precedent moving forward. “The only people that have a PSA membership are people who care about “increasing the value” of their cards, and anyone that gets the membership just for the card will want to recoup what they paid for it,” one fan concluded in a Reddit post, stating that Bandai’s collaboration with a grading company seems “unprofessional” for a card game.

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