Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, and everyone in between! Forget the Super Bowl for a moment, and forget about Beyonce just long enough to come on a journey with me. Come on a journey with me through the depths of our past, fellow peers. We are all reaching the age of adulthood, and that’s a terrifying thought. Let’s be kids again. Let us all gather around the television at 7 a.m. to watch the newest episode of "Pokemon!" I’m not too sure how our little bodies did it, but we always managed to wake up right before the best Saturday morning TV shows. Meanwhile, getting up for school was like a trip from hell.
This month, we fellow Pokemon trainers and champions reach our 20-year anniversary of the existence of the world where we follow Ash Ketchum across the realm of his everlasting youth. Through every episode, we learned a valuable lesson that undoubtedly shaped our youth. We learned about friendship, courage, bravery, love and resilience.
In 1996, when I was a measly 3 years old, the first Gameboy Pokemon games were released in Japan. Shortly after in 1997, it hit the big screen, also in Japan. They always get the cool things first! 1998 was a big year for us Americans, the Red and Blue games and the "Indigo League" were released! We all fell in love with the concept of these monsters roaming around the city, capable of becoming our companions forever. Our hearts broke simultaneously when Charmander, loyal to his original *insert not-nice word* owner, almost let the flame on his tail go out.
We gritted our teeth in annoyance when Gary always showed up and ruined Ash’s day.
And we always had faith that Team Rocket would, in fact, blast off again.
When Pokemon began, we had a simple 150 (soon to be 151 when Mewtwo was created) Pokemon. Now, the world has expanded to hundreds! I was unable to come across a definite number on any website, but people theorize that as of "Pokemon X/Y." there are 718 different kinds of Pokemon. With the growing enterprise, I’m sure there will be more and more created, so the company probably doesn’t want to give us an exact number. I’m no expert, but it’s a possibility.
We have a lot to look forward to in 2016. Nintendo is releasing the original Blue, Red and Yellow versions for our updated 3DS devices. They promise the art and the setup of the game will remain the original pixelated, old school, classic style, aka the Pokemon we grew up with before everything got fancy.
There are huge expectations to be filled in the most anticipated concept in Pokemon history. Let’s face it, growing up, we all wanted Pokemon to truly roam the streets. (Though that would be truly terrifying—picture a 3-foot-tall Wasp chasing you around the forest). Through "Pokemon Go," we might be able to have our biggest dreams come pretty close to reality. Through the trailer, they’re setting their standards pretty freaking high. I want to actually have to throw a Pokeball at these creatures that I can see through my phone. I want the game-play to give me as many chills as the trailer did.
All I know is, as soon as it’s released, I’m getting myself a new Ash Ketchum hat. I wore one every day of my youth, and if Pokemon finds a way to bring me back to the good ol’ days, so be it. I will delve in that world happily.
All of my information about Pokemon and their progress can be found on their website.
Want to watch the trailer? It gave me goosebumps, and may or may not have brought me to tears.