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History Of Pokémon Part 2

1998-1999: Crossing the Pacific, Pokemon style

By the start of 1998, Japan was crazy with Pokémon fever. In October of the same year, Pokémon Red and Blue were released in the US and history repeated itself. Again a nation of children snapped up the games and fell in love with the 151 Pokémon, again a trading card series and cartoon were released, and again a country was gripped by Pokémon fever, with the cuddly critters even appearing on Time magazine. A year later, exactly the same thing happened in Europe. Meanwhile, back in Japan, the success of Pokémon continued with eight new games and two animated movies released in this two-year period.

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Pokémon Aeroplane

Japan, 1998

By 1998 Pokémon had become so big that All Nippon Airways painted the creatures on four planes: two Boeing 747-400s and two Boeing 767-300s.

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Yellow Pokémon VW Beetle


To celebrate the release of Pokémon Yellow, Nintendo and Volkswagen released a special Pokémon Beetle car shaped like Pikachu, complete with ears and a jagged tail.

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Pokémon Trading Card Game

Format: Game Boy Color

Released: December 1998, Japan

In this videogame version of the popular trading card game you played as Mark, a young lad who wanted to the best ever Pokémon Trading Card Game player by defeating Club Masters and Grand Masters. At the end of the game you'd

fight Mark's rival, Ronald. Beat him and you'd be the Champion.

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Hey You, Pikachu!

Format: Nintendo 64

Released: December 1998, Japan

Hey You, Pikachu! came bundled with the VRU, a microphone that plugged into the N64 controller. Players could talk to Pikachu and he'd respond. It came out in the US a year later but the VRU didn't work well, so it didn't hit the UK.

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Pokémon Yellow

Format: Game Boy

Released: September 1998, Japan. October 1999, US

Possibly due to the success of the animated series, a new version of the videogame was released containing some changes. Instead of having to choose between a Charmander, Squirtle and Bulbasaur at the start of the game, players were this time given a Pikachu (as in the cartoon). Also as in the cartoon Pikachu refused to go in a Poké Ball, so the little yellow Pokémon walked alongside you as you take part in your quest and would react to in-game events.

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Pokémon Red/Blue

Format: Game Boy

Released: September 1998, US. October 1999, UK.

The first Pokémon games were released in these years. As mentioned in part one of this feature. As mentioned in part 1 of the feature, these weren't exact conversions of the Japanese Red/Green games as they featured slightly improved visuals and some of the glitches were fixed. Also Bulbasaur featured on the box art of the UK version of Blue while Venusaur was the mascot for Green.

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Pokémon Stadium 2

(western Pokémon Stadium)

Format: Nintendo 64

Released: April 1999, Japan

Ready to get confused? Okay. The Japanese Pokémon Stadium wasn't the same as the UK one, but the Japanese sequel is the same as the first Pokémon Stadium in the UK. Pokémon Stadium 2 (later released as Pokémon Stadium in the UK) features all 151 Pokémon which can be uploaded from Red, Blue and Yellow via the N64 Transfer Pak, then commanded in 3D battles. There are also some great mini-games.

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16 comments so far...
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  1. TheAPERSON Sunday 17th May 2009 at 08:20

    This section brings back so many memories. Interesting about the Pokémon Stadium numbering, that means they had 3 Pokémon Stadiums.

    I played from this page; Gold, TCG the game and Pinball. I also played the actual TCG for a bit, and saw the TV series and the first two movies. Saw a bit of the third movie, but after that I just stopped watching the movies.

  2. Ai64 Sunday 17th May 2009 at 08:28

    I still remember playing pokemon yellow when i was young. This sure does bring back memories.

  3. lui_gui Sunday 17th May 2009 at 08:38

    Is it incredibly sad that I find that Beetle and aeroplane INCREDIBLY AWESOME?!

    I'm depressed now...

  4. Sheikah-link Sunday 17th May 2009 at 09:08

    There should be a nostalgia alert on the side of the title xD

    PT3 in this feature is where we'll start seeing things go down hill :shock:

  5. Jedi Metroid Sunday 17th May 2009 at 09:27

    I wanna fly in the Pokeplane!

  6. Alex Muscas Sunday 17th May 2009 at 11:07

    Hey, I've just noticed that this is the same feature in the Diamond/ Pearl special edition of ONM! Not complaining though, as my copy met a brutal end... :(

  7. teeelo Sunday 17th May 2009 at 11:29

    Also Bulbasaur featured on the box art of the UK version of Blue


  8. King Seda Sunday 17th May 2009 at 12:34

    I saw one of the Pokémon Planes. It was next to the plane I was boarding.

  9. Kirby8 Sunday 17th May 2009 at 13:10

    Also Bulbasaur featured on the box art of the UK version of Blue


    EXACTLY!!! When I was reading this I thought "*buzzer* WRONG!!!" The worst thing is is that they have the boxart image right there on the side with balstoise on the front!! LOL!

  10. markdean2012 Sunday 17th May 2009 at 14:08

    i think i have played every game on that page other than, hey you pikachu and pokemon green.

  11. The Arbiter Sunday 17th May 2009 at 14:57

    Is it incredibly sad that I find that Beetle and aeroplane INCREDIBLY AWESOME?!

    I'm depressed now...

    Yes. That makes two of us.

    I simply loved Gold and Silver. They haven't been topped so far, so I have high hopes for HG and SS. Pokemon 2000 was the best movie so far imo.

    It's a shame Ho-oh didn't get his own movie. It means all the other legendaries can eat together, yet Ho-oh has to be all emo and sit by the rubbish bins by himself.

  12. funmaker11 Sunday 17th May 2009 at 20:14

    ^LOL true. :D

    I'm never a fan of Pokemon TC Games... I've played the first game, but I've gotten bored of it already.

    I don't get easily bored of the RPG Pokemon games as they're legendary.

  13. kamon Sunday 17th May 2009 at 21:53

    Pokemon Stadium 1 in Japan had only 41 Pokemon. The other 110 were planned to be included in a 64DD expansion disk. But the 64DD kept being delayed so the full game was released on cartridge as Pokemon Stadium 2 in Japan and Pokemon Stadium elsewhere.

    Hey You Pikachu was planned to have a European release, but during localisation they found there were too many European regional accents for the voice recognition software to cope with.

  14. slangman Monday 18th May 2009 at 17:12

    It was around this time I got into Pokémon. I remember trading cards at my old school when I was 10, 11 years old. Then I watched the first movie, loved it and got myself into Pokémon yellow with my new gameboy for my birthday.

    I still keep my shinnies in the wallets in my folder. I even still have the limited edition gold plated cards. Great times.

  15. master sword Saturday 23rd May 2009 at 09:07

    gold and silver, the best in the series

    can still remember doing mystery gift at school to get all the items :XD

  16. Lukeo10 Friday 14th Aug 2009 at 15:05

    Aaaahhhhhhh, emerald was my fave

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