McDonald’s Original Minimum★Pack

The McDonald’s Original Minimum★Pack (more commonly known as the McDonald’s Pokémon-e Minimum Pack) booster packs were released exclusively in Japanese McDonald’s restaurants for a limited time in 2002, from January 26 to February 24.

They were released alongside the McDonalds E Series 2002 promos during the same time period. Those promos also came in a sealed booster pack, but only contained 1 card from the Japanese “P” promo set. They were given for free with each purchase of a Happy Meal.

Trainers Magazine vol. 14, pg. 6 describing the promotion

When purchasing a meal, customers could also purchase a McDonald’s Original Minimum★Pack for 180 yen. There was no purchase limit on the number of packs a customer could purchase, they just had to purchase at least 1 meal.

Each McDonald’s Original Minimum★Pack included six cards:

  1. A Cosmos holofoil Pokemon
  2. A Cosmos holofoil energy card of the same type as the foil Pokemon
  3. A second non-holo Pokemon card of a different type than the holofoil
  4. A third non-holo Pokemon card of a different type than the previous two
  5. A non-holo energy of the second Pokemon’s type
  6. A non-holo energy of the third Pokemon’s type

Each booster pack had a fixed configuration. With 6 possible foil Pokemon, that meant that there are 6 kinds of boosters.

The front of each booster also contained a damage counter card, with die-cut damage counters. This card sits directly on top of the holofoil Pokemon card, meaning that scratches from the cardboard perforation are possible.

Pack opening video

Chikorita Pack

Charmander Pack

Squirtle Pack

Pikachu Pack

Slowpoke Pack

Larvitar Pack

“Minimum” Rules

Diagram from Trainer’s Magazine vol. 14, pg. 7

The fixed contents of the packs was meant to enable players to play a game with what was called “minimum” rules. Players only needed 1 McDonald’s Original Minimum★Pack each to play. The rules were as follows:

  • There are no deck, discard pile, or prize cards
  • Players start the game with all 6 cards from their pack in their hand
  • The first player to knock out all of the opponent’s Pokemon wins.
  • Players start the game as normal, putting one Pokemon into the active slot and the others on their bench.
  • Players can attach 1 energy card per turn to a Pokemon as usual
  • When an energy card would be discarded (either by knocking out Pokemon or retreating), return that energy card to a player’s hand instead.


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