Gaming Anniversaries November 2- Pokemon Pikachu

Released November 2, 1998- Pokemon Pikachu

Pokemon Pikachu walked into the North American market on this day in 1998.

Not strictly a video game, but holding video gamey elements, Pokemon Pikachu is a unique Tamagotchi-like toy from 98′.

Cashing in on the Pokemon fever that was sweeping the nation, not to mention the craze of Tamagotchis from around the same time, Nintendo certainly couldn’t be left out in the dust. They released a Tamagotchi type toy that featured everyones favourite monster Pikachu!

Pokemon Pikachu was basically a pedometer. As the player would walk, Pikachu would start collecting “Watts” which the player could use to buy gifts. It took just 20 steps to earn 1 watt. Additionally, the more the player cares for Pikachu, the more activities that would become available. Furthermore, watts can be used to play a slot machine minigame. However, if Pikachu goes ignored for long periods of time, then it will become angry and refuse to interact with you. The game contained a real-time clock. Pikachu would use the actual time and adapt to a schedule that will include eating, sleeping and even bathing. During those periods, Pikachu will not respond to commands.

The units are styled like miniature GameBoys and featured a black and white screen, as well as 4 buttons that featured different modes.  It went on to become the hottest selling pedometer of its time. Unlike the Tamagotchi of the time, Pokemon Pikachu took a whole new direction.  Unfortunately, though, it seemed a little lacklustre. That didn’t stop just about everyone from wanting one though! Pokemon Fever really was a strange disease.

Did you own a Pokemon Pikachu Let us know what you thought of it, or if you still have one, in the comments below!

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Living in St.John's Newfoundland, Dave has been a gamer all of his life. Starting with the NES and working both backwards and forwards, he intends to play the new along with the old!