PIKACHU GETS HIS REVENGE IN POKÉMON GO PARODY VIDEO

Have you had enough Pokémon Go this summer? You may be finished with this year’s mobile gaming fad, but it’s not finished with you! Pokémon can be small and even adorable, but a pocket monster is still a monster, and you can only keep it chained for so long. Today is the day that Pikachu fights back, in a new parody video.

Via Laughing Squid, filmmaker Joe Murayama has created and starred in a new short on YouTube called Pokémon Invasion, which features everyone’s favorite electro-rat breaking free from the confines of Murayama’s phone in search of a little payback. Fortunately for Murayama, this Pikachu doesn’t have the greatest aim. But he does have at least one friend, as Charizard also makes a brief appearance to rise up against their would-be Pokémaster.

Clearly our hero here hasn’t done enough to win the loyalty of his Pokémon, and that’s coming back to bite him. However, Murayama’s character has obviously seen Pixels, and he was prepared for the inevitable day that gaming characters became real. I mean, who doesn’t have semiautomatic weapons modified to affect only video game creatures hidden around their home? That’s just smart strategy.

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Unfortunately for Murayama, Pikachu has more than one way to win this battle, and he’s gonna have to deal with a much smaller living space inside of a Pokéball. It’s a fun short, and Murayama credits his roommate “Dennis” for filming the scenes that he appeared in. Murayama has two other video game inspired shorts on his YouTube page, and both are worth checking out.

What did you think about Pokémon Invasion? We choose you to leave a comment below!

 

‘Pokémon GO’ Tricks & Tips: How To Find, Catch Pikachu And Raichu

As the “Pokémon GO” phenomenon continue sweeping the globe, many still do not have a Pikachu in their Pokédex. Now, this guide will explain how to catch Pikachu as a starter Pokémon in the augmented reality game.

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Pikachu can immediately be found toward at the start of the game. Upon creating an account, the Professor will request trainers to catch their first Pokémon: Charmander, Bulbasaur, and Squirtle.

To have a Pikachu starter, you simply need to ignore these three starting Pokémon at least four-five times, according to IGN. Continue doing so until the Electric-type Pikachu will show up on your mobile screen, ready for you to catch.

If you missed your chance to get a Pikachu starter, there are a couple of different approaches to track it down. Usually, Pikachu is spawned in areas that are generally considered as industrial, VG 24/7 reported. It is said that players can search for these electric-types of creatures in power plants, factories, and schools, among others.

The use of incense and lures can also boost the odds of catching Pikachu. Nonetheless, it is worth noting that Pokémon trainers should have a couple of Poke Balls prepared since it may take a couple of attempts to successfully catch the electric-type creature.

Pokémon trainers can also breed a Pikachu using an egg instead of catching one in the wild. According to the Pokemon Database, it takes around 11 egg cycles or around 2800 steps to incubate the electric mouse Pokemon. It is said that Pikachu’s red circles on its cheeks are pockets that store electricity.

Although Pikachu does not actually have a set level for evolving into its final form. The electric mouse Pokémon usually evolves into Raichu when exposed to a Thunder Stone.

Raichu, which is usually found in woodlands and forests, is weak to Ground and resistant to Electric, Flying, and Steel. Raichu’s abilities include Static and Surge Surfer.

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In battle, when a Pokémon with Static ability is hit by a move that makes contact, there is a 30 percent risk that the attacking Pokémon will get to be deadened, while the Surge Surfer ability apparently doubles the speed of Raichu when the front line is under the impacts of Electric Terrain.

What’s more, Raichu also has a hidden ability – Lighting Rod. The said ability contains all single -target Electric-type moves to focus on a Pokemon with 100 percent accuracy. It is most helpful in double/triple battles.

Stay tuned for more “Pokémon GO” tips, tricks, news, and updates here.

Pokemon Go Glitch Lets You Hold on to Gyms Indefinitely

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All you need is an egg, and you’ll be able to hold on to Pokemon Go gyms until Niantic releases a fix.

Pokemon Go has seen its fair share of exploits and things that weren’t supposed to happen, and now there seems to be a new glitch that could help players hold on to gyms until Niantic releases a patch to fix it.

Players compete over gyms by tapping on their opponent’s Pokemon. Once a gym is cleared out, players can put one of their own creatures into it, making the gym their own. However, when a player puts an egg in the gym, they can hold on to the gym without worry: enemy players can’t attempt a gym takeover against an egg. You can see for yourself in the video below (via Eurogamer).

Eggs are normally used for hatching new Pokemon by walking certain distances. Because they have no stats, they can’t participate in battles, meaning players can sit on a gym indefinitely. This also means these players can take advantage of the Pokecoin system, which grants owners in-game currency every day they’re in control of the gym.

Niantic is likely to fix this glitch, as this exploit has the potential to render a core part of the game broken. We’ve contacted Niantic for comment and will update this article as we receive more information.

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With Pokémon Go, Nintendo Seeks to Salvage Lost Opportunity

A Pokémon character on a street in London during a game of Pokémon Go. The augmented-reality game came about because Nintendo has gone years without a hit and was forced to find partners.

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HONG KONG — A video game featuring combative little critters called Pokémon hits mobile devices, and millions of fans are hooked. Players around the world search for rare and valuable Pokémon and connect with each other to do battle.

Today? That was 18 years ago.

Nintendo, the Japanese video game company that helped start the current Pokémon Go craze, first shook up the industry in 1998, when the original version of Pokémon became a surprise hit in America. That version, played on its Game Boy portable game device, presaged the current era of smartphone games, a world where titles like Candy Crush and Clash of Clans command billion-dollar price tags.

Nintendo — which took an early lead in mobile gaming and then proceeded to blow it — offers a lesson in how corporate cultures can make or break a company, especially those that are pioneers in a field. Nintendo’s drive has helped the Kyoto-based company produce some of the world’s most beloved games and play a major role in creating the modern global video game industry.

Yet that same stubbornness and perfectionism led to missed opportunities. It skipped smartphones and app stores and dismissed partnering with other companies with potentially better ideas. If Nintendo is easily likened to Apple for its autocratic insistence on groundbreaking innovation, it is also like Xerox in that it has failed to take advantage of ideas as valuable as the mouse.

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Pokémon Go, this month’s gaming phenomenon, came about only because Nintendo has gone years without a hit and was forced to find partners. In this case it teamed up with Niantic Inc., an American start-up that was once part of Google and provides the technology that puts Pikachu and its bestial friends in the real world.

“It’s quite a big change,” said Serkan Toto, a game industry consultant in Tokyo. If Niantic had pitched Pokémon Go two years earlier, he said, “Nintendo wouldn’t have just said no, they wouldn’t even have listened.”

A Nintendo spokesman declined to comment.

Nintendo has shown before that it can adapt. It got its start making playing cards in 1889. By the 1970s it was designing video games, leading to the release of the Donkey Kong video game machine in 1981.

Many of its ideas offered a glimpse into the future of video games. In 1983, it added a modem port to the home video game console that would eventually become the popular Nintendo Entertainment System, decades ahead of a time when Xbox and PlayStation gamers connect with one another around the world.

“They were pushing the envelope so much earlier than anyone realizes,” said Jeff Ryan, author of the book “Super Mario: How Nintendo Conquered America.”

Nintendo was still riding high on the success of its video game consoles in 1998 when it released the first Pokémon hand-held video game in America. Based on the childhood bug collecting passion of its creator, Satoshi Tajiri, it let players seek out and collect Pokémon, then train them into powerful warriors.

Nintendo assumed Pokémon would not catch on in America: “It was role-playing, with minimal graphics, battles that ended with one fighter ‘fainting’ instead of dying, and an obsessive compulsive goal of finding 150 critters wandering in the woods,” Mr. Ryan wrote.

But it also had cutting-edge innovations. Players could connect their Game Boys with a cable to battle each other, foreshadowing today’s connected mobile games. It was also an early example of what the gaming industry would come to call casual games: Games that can be put down and picked up again whenever the user likes.

Many games of the era had an end, like a big villain to defeat, that players could race to if they focused on the game for hours or days. Even after collecting all the Pokémon and defeating increasingly powerful opponents, a player could keep playing and battling friends.

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The game sold more than 200 million copies, according to Nintendo, and spawned a cartoon television show and a lucrative line of Pokémon trading cards.

Smartphones seemed like a natural fit for Pokémon when they emerged more than a decade later. The Pokémon Company, which owns the Pokémon characters and is partially owned by Nintendo, released a free app game to promote the trading cards in 2011. But Nintendo said it would not sell games on any app stores.

Changes in the game industry made that increasingly difficult. A growing number of gamers were casual gamers who did not have all day to sit in front of a console in their homes. While Nintendo’s Wii console, with its motion controller, was a hit, its successor, the Wii U, was a disappointment.

Nintendo was at a crossroads in other ways. In 2013, its longtime president, Hiroshi Yamauchi, died. Last year, Satoru Iwata, a former Nintendo chief executive and a game designer who supported the Pokémon Go project, also died.

Pokémon Go demonstrates that Nintendo’s stable of characters — which also includes the mustachioed plumber Mario, a princess named Zelda, and her savior, Link — can form the basis for others to develop lucrative mobile games. But that would turn Nintendo into a different kind of company — one, Mr. Ryan says, that is content to hit singles and doubles rather than swing for the fences.

“It would make them a ton of money and it would secure their reputation for 100 years,” he said. “But it would also not make them Nintendo anymore.”

Pokémon Go, explained

Everyone is suddenly catching Pokémon fever again. Here’s what’s going on.

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You may have heard stories of people hunting down Pokémon on their office desks, in hospital rooms, and even in bathrooms. One teenage girl even found a dead body while looking for Pokémon. And police in Missouri claimed that four suspected robbers lured in victims with the possibility of Pokémon.

What the hell is going on?

Well, after a few years lying relatively low, Pokémon is making a bit of a comeback. The Nintendo-owned franchise, which exploded in popularity in the late 1990s, is again taking America by storm — this time through Pokémon Go, its biggest entry into the mobile space, now available for a free download on Android and iOS. It’s so popular that it’s on the verge of overtaking Twitter in terms of daily active users on Android.

In simple terms, Pokémon Go uses your phone’s GPS and clock to detect where and when you are in the game and make Pokémon “appear” around you (on your phone screen) so you can go and catch them. As you move around, different and more types of Pokémon will appear depending on where you are and what time it is. The idea is to encourage you to travel around the real world to catch Pokémon in the game. (This combination of a game and the real world interacting is known as “augmented reality.” More on that later.)

So why are people seeking out virtual creatures while at work and as they go to the bathroom? Part of the reason Pokémon Go is popular is that it’s free, so it’s easy to download and play. But more importantly, Pokémon Go fulfills a fantasy Pokémon fans have had since the games first came out: What if Pokémon were real and inhabited our world? But to understand why people are so enthusiastic about the idea, we first need to go back to the late 1990s — to the original Pokémon games.

Pokémon Go is an attempt at realizing what fans always wanted from Pokémon

The Pokémon games take place in a world populated by exotic, powerful monsters — they can look like rats, snakes, dragons, dinosaurs, birds, eggs, trees, and even swords. In this world, people called “trainers” travel around the globe to tame these creatures and, in an ethically questionable manner, use them to fight against each other.

Based on the premise of bug catching — a popular hobby in Japan, where the games originated — the big goal in the Pokémon games, from the original Pokémon Red and Blue to the upcoming Pokémon Sun and Moon, is to collect all of these virtual creatures.

The first generation of Pokémon games began with 151 creatures, but the catalog has since expanded to more than 720. In Pokémon Go, only the original 151 are available.

The games took the world by storm in the late 1990s — a big fad widely known as “Pokémania.” The original handheld games, Pokémon Red and Blue, came out in 1998 in America, followed by Yellow in 1999 and Gold and Silver in 2000. With the games came spinoffs like Pokémon Snap and Pokémon Pinball in 1999, a popular TV show, movies, trading cards, and a lot of other merchandise. For a few years, Pokémon was on top of the world. (The franchise is still fairly big; it’s just not the cultural phenomenon that it once was.)

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But since the games came out for Nintendo’s handheld consoles, fans all around the world have shared a dream: What if Pokémon weren’t limited to the games’ world? What if they were real and inhabited our world? What if we could all be Ash Ketchum, the TV show’s star trainer, who wanders the world in his quest to catch them all and earn his honors by defeating all the gym leaders? I want a Pikachu in real life, dammit!

Unfortunately, Pokémon aren’t real — at least not yet. But technology has evolved to be able to simulate a world in which Pokémon are real. That’s essentially what Pokémon Go attempts to do: By using your phone’s ability to track the time and your location, the game imitates what it would be like if Pokémon really were roaming around you at all times, ready to be caught and collected. And given that many original Pokémon fans are now adults, this idea has the extra benefit of hitting a sweet spot of nostalgia, helping boost its popularity.

Pokémon Go doesn’t play exactly like a typical Pokémon game

Pokémon Center Kyoto to Offer “Apprentice Geisha Pikachu” Goods

Crunchyroll previously reported on the March 2016 opening of Pokémon Center Kyoto, the first of 10 Pokémon specialty stores to be established in the Kyoto region. Now the Pokémon Company is offering a sneak peek at one of the unique, Kyoto-themed character goods that will be available at this location: the Maiko Han Pikachu.

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The Maiko Han Pikachu is a female Pikachu dressed in the make-up and clothing of an apprentice geisha, for which the Kyoto region is especially famous. This design represents a collaboration between Kyoto’s traditional crafts and modern pop culture, and will be used for character goods aimed at tourists to the Kyoto area.

Pokemon Center Brings Summer To December With Summer Festival Pikachu

The Pokemon Center has been regularly rolling out new Pikachu Celebration plushes, stuff toys originally released month-by-month in Pokemon Centers in Japan. There’s a bit of a delay involved, which is why the July 2015 design is showing up in the online store now. Summer Festival Pikachu, originally Omatsuri Pikachu, is now available.

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The Summer Festival Pikachu is decked out in clothing people would normally wear to a Japanese festival. He has a nejirihachimaki headband, a twisted headband made out of two sorts of cloth, and wears a happi, like members of a festival team participating in events would wear. He also carries a fan with a silhouette of his face on it, to keep himself cool.

The Summer Festival Pikachu is 4.38” wide and 7.75” tall. He’s currently available for $17.99.

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The Pokemon Company Expands Digital Content Reach

The company behind all things Pokemon is going aggressively after kids who own tablets this summer, expanding the digital Poke-presence with the apps Camp Pokemon and Pokemon TV.

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Both apps serve different portions of the fanbase. The Camp Pokemon app is geared more toward fans of the card game. Its main attraction is the Pokemon TCG Match activity, which contains three modes of play: matching pairs of cards, matching cards by Energy type, and matching cards by Evolution chain. By aceing these games, players can earn Energy symbol pins for their Pin Book.

Camp Pokemon has a few episodes of the animated series, but for those who want more, there’s the Pokemon TV app. Storing all 700-plus episodes of the cartoon wouldn’t be feasible for a free app, so Pokemon TV has instead a rotating selection of over 50 choice favorites from the show’s 16-year history. The lineup changes every week, so if you don’t see the one you were looking for, just wait a bit and it might turn up.

Camp Pokemon and the Pokemon TV app are available on both the App Store and Google Play. For those who want to view the Pokemon TV app directly on their TVs, it’s only currently possible on Google Chromecast.

 

HUMOUR: Ash’s Squirtle called out of retirement to help battle BC wildfires

With over 200 wildfires (as of print time) currently blazing across British Columbia, the provincial government has called Ash Ketchum’s Squirtle out of retirement to help combat the growing numbers.

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A once prominent member of the Pokémon trainer’s roster, Ash’s Squirtle was last used in a trainer battle over 14 years ago. The Squirtle will first be deployed to Puntzi Lake, and then to near Bobtail Mountain Provincial Park, where two of the largest fires in the province are currently raging.

“In 2015, we’ve already doubled the number of forest fires we had in all of 2014,” Forests Minister Steve Thomson said in an announcement this week. “Ash’s Squirtle isn’t a last resort, but we are certainly exploring all of our options in order to get these fires under control. “

Squirtles are small water-type Pokémon that closely resemble turtles, but are substantively larger in size. In particular, Ash’s Squirtle was used to help control the devastating Garnet fire in 1994 and the Salmon Arm fire in 1998 — after which Ash’s Squirtle grew to level 13 and learned the special move Bubble.

News of Ash’s Squirtle returning to the fold brought nostalgia-induced praised from BC Wildfire Management spokesperson Kendrick Mackenzie, suggesting that it might be the return to form that BC needs: “Nothing against the province’s new methods of fighting forest fires. I’m sure they’re perfectly adequate, but you just can’t compare them with the original 150 methods.”

Since the beginning of April, the provincial government has spent about $108-million on controlling and extinguishing the fires ripping across the province. According to statistics from the BC Wildfire Service, lightning is still the number one cause of forest fires, while people-caused fires hovered around the 44 per cent mark last year. The third starter of fires in BC, trailing by a large margin, is from wild Charizards carelessly wagging their flame-tipped tails around in dry forested areas while hot-headedly ignoring their trainer’s commands.

BC Wildfire Service is reminding residents to never leave fire Pokémon unattended and to always make sure to keep at least one water Pokémon in your party, partly for safety reasons but also because that’s what any half-decent trainer should already be doing.

When asked how he felt about leaving retirement to help deal with BC’s forest fires, Ash’s Squirtle was humble yet proud, saying that he was more than happy to be helping the province and that, “Squirtle, Squirtle! Squirtle!”

Parents, Prepare Your Wallets: Yokai Watch Is The New Pokémon

In Japan, a little show called Yokai Watch is now a kiddie craze on a scale not seen since Pokémon.

The Americanized version of a little boy protected by a colorful (and collectible) cadre of “spirits” is set to premiere in 2016, Disney XD announced on Tuesday.

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Companies are betting big on Yokai Watch becoming the West’s next big Japanese animation boom. Along with Disney, both Hasbro and Nintendo have finalized deals with the shows’ three co-producers—Dentsu Entertainment USA, TV Tokyo, and Level-5—to bring Yokai Watch entertainment and toys to the United States. Nintendo’s deal with Level-5 will bring a Yokai Watch 3DS game to North America in 2016, with versions in Europe, Latin America, Australia, and New Zealand to come later. Hasbro’s toy line will premiere at the same time.

Make no mistake: Yokai Watch means to capture the hearts and minds of American children (and the wallets of their parents) with an aggressive cross-platform strategy. Toys, games, TV, and likely other channels including music and graphic novels will mirror the approach these companies used with a previous, highly successful Japanese franchise, Pokémon.

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In 1998, Pokémon: The First Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back was a box office hit in the U.S. with estimated ticket sales around $85 million. It continues to be the highest grossing anime film inNorth America to date. Like all fads, Pokémon sales eventually waned, and companies again turned to the East for a replacement.

Companies could use another Pokémon, and Yokai Watch seems readily primed to be that. In Japan, the Yokai Watch franchise is booming. Toys and merchandise sales alone have already totaled $1 billion, and the franchise has only been around since 2013.

For parents who didn’t pay attention, Pokémon was about a boy and his friends who caught, trained, and battled “pocket monsters” like Pikachu, which they found around their world. Yokai Watch is based on a similar premise, starring a young boy named Keita who obtains a timepiece that allows him to interact with mischievous and mysterious spirits (known as yokai in Japanese). Keita is able to summon friendly yokai to battle those who would do him harm.

The question now is whether localization can smooth over the nuances of the Japanese mythology that inspired the show into a way North American kids can understand. Just like Satoshi became Ash Ketchum before him, Keita will become Nate in the U.S. Level-5 president Akihiro Hino has already confirmed that many of the shows’ yokai names will be changed, but that Keita’s Pikachu analog, the ghost cat Jibanyan, will retain his Japanese name in North America.

Already, Jibanyan outranks Pikachu in Japan. When a Japanese mall booked meet-and-greets with both cuddly creatures at the same time on the same day, a Twitter user observed: “You can just go up and touch Pikachu, but Jibanyan [is so popular he] needs his own queueing and ticketing system.”

Will American kids love Jibanyan the way they loved Pikachu? The argument can be made that the idea of a ghost cat—or any of its fellow spirits—is a purely Japanese one. Writing for Games Beat, Dale North notes that the localization teams have their work cut out:

“These beings… won’t mean anything to Western children, but Japanese kids are familiar with these mythical creatures and are able fully appreciate the silly, pun-based naming scheme that series’ creators went with. And it’s not just the lore that is Japan-specific: The locations, relationships, and nonplayer characters are all just as unabashedly Japanese.”

Then again, Pokémon’s pocket monsters were directly inspired by Japanese ghosts and ghouls. American Kids may not know the mythology, but that didn’t them from begging for Pokémon toys.

Perhaps Hasbro and co. envision the yokai spirits of Yokai Watch as the ghosts of Pokémon-past. They’re hoping they’ll at least make their bottom lines rise again.