Pokemon Is A Complicated Business, But Also Fascinating To Learn About


When you think of Pokemon, you probably think that Nintendo owns the lucrative intellectual property in its entirety. In reality, it’s not that simple as the rights to the pocket monster franchise are almost equally split between several parties. Suppose you’ve ever wanted a brief history lesson on the franchise. In that case, GameSpot has a new video breaking down the complex ownership foundation of the franchise and how each partner–Nintendo, Game Freak, Creatures, and The Pokemon Company–pool their efforts and resources to constantly evolve the series.

Interestingly, Game Freak is still an independent studio with relatively few employees when compared to other companies. The developer has regularly released a mainline Pokemon game every three years while juggling other projects, like underrated classics Tembo the Badass Elephant and Pocket Card Jockey. The big Pokemon games responsible for introducing dozens of new pocket monsters also serve as the foundation for the far more lucrative merchandising arm of Pokemon.

Factor in the involvement of Creatures, Nintendo, and The Pokemon Company, and you can quickly see how the Pokemon machine is a complex arrangement of moving parts across video games, anime series, movies, merchandise, and the massively popular trading card game. All of that hard work has paid off, because as of 2021, Pokemon was valued at an estimated $92.1 billion, eclipsing other mega-popular IPs like Hello Kitty, Mickey Mouse, and Star Wars.

As the video title says, the business of Pokemon is complicated, but it is incredibly fascinating once you dig into the intricacies of the partnership between the entities involved. To see what’s next for Pokemon, don’t forget to tune into the February 2024 Pokemon Presents livestream today.