Pokémon celebrates its 25th anniversary

David Matos, Staff Writer

Pokémon commemorates its 25th anniversary this year with an ongoing celebration for fans of all ages. 

Pokémon is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a series of events and products.
Pokémon is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a series of events and products. (Photo from Wikipedia)

Pokémon made its debut with “Pocket Monsters: Red” and “Pocket Monsters: Green” for the Game Boy in Japan in 1996. Players role-played as trainers whose goal was to collect all of the Pokémon and prepare them for battles. This basic game format is still used in Pokémon games today.

The games were massively successful and later re-released in 1998 as “Pocket Monsters: Red” and “Pocket Monsters: Blue” in North America. Its ongoing game series is the major reason why the franchise is the second best-selling video game franchise, only behind Nintendo’s Mario. Pokémon went on to produce other successful forms of entertainment, such as an anime TV show, toys, a trading card game, music, a live-action film and a theme park. Pokémon still remains the highest-grossing media franchise of all time. 

The creators of the franchise are holding virtual events, releasing merchandise and announcing new games to celebrate the past 25 years of Pokémon’s legacy. 

Video Games 

Pokémon announced three new games for the Nintendo Switch.Pokémon Brilliant Diamond” and “Pokémon Shining Pearl” are set to release in late 2021 andPokémon Legends: Archeus” is planned for an early 2022 launch. The 2021 releases are remakes of the 2006 games, “Pokémon Diamond” and “Pokémon Pearl.” All three games take place in the Sinnoh region, which was introduced and last seen in the 2006 games. 


Pokémon is collaborating with Universal Music Group and musical artists such as Katy Perry to create Pokémon themed music. The franchise also partnered with Post Malone to produce a free virtual concert, which is available to watch on Pokémon’s YouTube channel.

Merchandise Collaborations  

The Pokémon Center teamed up with Bear Walker skateboards to release a limited-edition skateboard featuring the franchise’s most iconic character, Pikachu. Though it is only available to be purchased second-hand, fans can expect more themed merchandise to be announced this year. 

McDonalds also collaborated with the brand to produce exclusive Pokémon trading cards that can be purchased with a Happy Meal. In addition, the Pokémon Trading Card Game will be releasing exclusive anniversary cards later in the year. Since the franchise’s 25-year impact is so massive, it requires a yearlong celebration. Fans, old and new, can stay up to date on current announcements on Pokémon’s 25th Anniversary website. Anniversary events have already come and gone, but it’s still not too late to join in on the celebration.