Opinion: Pokemon's 25th Anniversary Sucks
The views expressed in this article are held solely by the author and are not reflective of Poke Cellar
When Pokemon first announced their 25th Anniversary promotion, fans around the world were met with a bizarre lack of information on what this promotion would actually entail. Even retailers and distributors were reportedly left in the dark. I can personally attest to the fact that game store owners mysteriously had their pre-orders cancelled with zero explanation.
What the hell was going on?
Let's wind back the clock. We knew there were going to be jumbo cards. We knew they would be packaged in something called First Partner Packs. We also knew there would be eight different releases and that commemorative binders would be available.
What we didn't know is what the heck a First Partner Pack even was or what was inside it. Well, the first one dropped in March and fans quickly discovered exactly what would be included in these packs: two reprinted boosters. "Great", I said to myself, as I opened my long-awaited Galar partner pack and laid eyes on the Steam Siege and Sun & Moon boosters.
There was no new set. There were no new Pokemon. There was nothing to be released in any conventional format. It was just some oversized classic reprints and a binder to put them in. Who the hell even likes these jumbo cards?
Needless to say, I was disappointed. Pokemon released a special Elite Trainer Box for their 20th Anniversary celebration. How come we didn't get anything?
The answer to this could be simple. Perhaps not everything Pokemon does is about the card game. Perhaps this celebration was less about the TCG and more about the franchise. This would certainly explain why Pokemon was simultaneously participating in so many corporate promotions. The Post Malone virtual concert. The McDonald's Happy Meal Promotion. The General Mills cereal promotion. All of these were part of the 25th Anniversary marketing campaign.
Some of my colleagues believe that Pokemon still has some surprises in the pipeline. With six more releases to go, Pokemon could certainly change something up with the remaining partner packs. However, given that game store owners had their Kanto pre-orders cancelled (remember: Kanto doesn't even release until October), I find it unlikely that Pokemon has any plans to deviate from what we have already seen.
How do YOU feel about Pokemon's 25th Anniversary? Did it live up to the hype? Are we just being spoiled brats looking to complain about anything? Was it an otherwise normal event that simply got drowned out by the inflated TCG market? Let us know in the comments below.