There’s a sentiment among long-time Nintendo fans:
Nintendo don’t give you what you think you want, but what you never knew you needed.
When we foolishly clamoured for a mature, dark Zelda game they gave us the timeless beauty of Wind Waker. While the industry strived for more powerful machines, better graphics from ever-pricier Big Black Boxes of Power, Nintendo got your nan playing with Wii. I don’t think many people were begging Miyamoto to spend his time on a console RTS about walking flowers, but Pikmin is one of the big man’s all time greats. And at the same time GTA and Tomb Raider were showing the world 3D graphics and guns were the future, a quaint little Game Boy game about raising cute critters left all other games in its dust.
Now, with the latest Pokémon games, Nintendo is finally setting its sights higher. By constantly giving us games we’d never have asked for given the choice, Nintendo proves that a benevolent dictator can achieve what democracy can’t. Now they are using this wisdom to change the world.
Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon are being made to bring about Peace on Earth. Let’s look at the clues.
What do all people on Earth have in common? Above them, in the night sky, hangs the sun and the moon. In this all mankind is united. Nintendo are very aware of how their fans think; even though we never got Pokémon Grey or Pokémon Z, we are naturally inclined to look for a third version title when we see a pair of Pokémon games. What completes the trifecta of sun and moon? The Earth. Nintendo are cleverly planting the idea of peace on Earth in our subconscious minds. Freud would be proud.
The 20th Anniversary
This year marks the twentieth anniversary of the original launch of Pokémon Red and Green in Japan. This means the kids who started playing Pokémon at the beginning sre becoming adults, and fans who were already in their teens or older at the launch of the first games might be in their 30s or 40s. Soon, the leaders of the free world will be the same people who grew up playing with Pikachu and his ilk, learning all-important life lessons about respect and friendship.
The Chinese Language
Pokémon is an international phenomenon, but never before has it been translated into the Chinese language. Finally, with Sun and Moon, the world’s foremost superpower, and the Phanpy in every room, will be brought into the fold. When Washington and Beijing stare down over trade routes, human rights violations or terror groups, the blows will be softened a little when the President remembers who let him trade his Kadabra that morning so it could evolve into Alakazam.
The Army of Pikachus
Though all mankind will benefit from the spread of peace and goodwill, there are always close-minded people opposed to any change. Some might not be welcoming to our smiling Japanese overlords; some will fight. Here in the UK, the government itself consists of racists who profiteer from the military industrial complex and long for the good old days when they could hunt and kill Vulpix for sport. They will not welcome peace, nor love for all Pokémon, and they will fight. Fortunately, Nintendo is amassing an army of Pikachu to spread their influence over the globe and crush opposition.
For people of my generation, Pokémon was the idyllic dream that helped us escape: we could be trapped in a broken education system, watching the adults destroy our economy, our environment and our international stability but we only had to close our eyes or switch on our Game Boy to be transported to a world where people lived in harmony with nature, where gas-guzzling planes made way for friendly magical birds.
Peace on Earth, or owning property, or ever retiring, or free healthcare all seem as much a dream now as Charmander, Pallet Town and the Pokémon Centre. But if I can dream of one, I can dream of the other. Even if Nintendo’s master plan, which they definitely have based on the evidence I have presented, fails, they have given us all a way to be reminded of our dreams of childhood. Maybe my parents’ generation has doomed the Earth, but one day the Pokémon Generation will take over. And maybe we’ll remember what we learned.