Pokemon Dev on DLC: "I've Always Said 'No' To Paid Pokemon"

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Pokemon Dev on DLC: "I've Always Said 'No' To Paid Pokemon"

That said, the developer has not completely ruled out the possibility of paid Pokemon DLC in the future.

Nintendo has finally decided to join its rivals in the present by experimenting with paid DLC in recent times. New Super Mario Bros. U and New Super Mario Bros. 2 both have received paid DLC on the Wii U and 3DS respectively. The Pokemon franchise, which has roughly seven kerjillion of the little critters by the latest count, seems like it would be the perfect fit for paid DLC. At 100 yen (about $1) per 'mon, they could be making bank, but Pokemon art director Ken Sugimori and game director Tetsuya Watanabe tell 4gamer why they have put their foot down on the idea of buying Pokemon for cash.

"When it comes to business, the one thing I've always said 'no!' to is 'the act of buying Pokemon with money,'" says Sugimori. "That is something that has been said since the days [Satoshi] Tajiri was completely involved in everything." He explains that having paid-for-Pokemon could 'ruin the worldview' of Pokemon.

"I believe the reason we don't simply commercialize, is that it's a way of protecting the brand, and for this purpose, we have the specialty company called The Pokemon Company. Therefore, suppose we sell a Pokemon for 100 yen, then we must prepare something that is worthy of that 100 yen, along with a reasonable consent for doing so."

You may then be asking about the Pokemon that are made available for download to those who go to see the latest Pokemon movie. "That plan came to be after we thought 'now, this is fun' about the idea of having the experience of a Pokemon who was featured in the movie you just saw, appear out of the big screen," explains Sugimori.

Sugimoro's conclusion, however, does not completely rule out the idea of having paid DLC in the future. "If we ever get the idea of 'this could be fun if we could sell it for real-life money,' or something similar during the planning of a future game, then perhaps we could sell them for 100 yen."

Would you be willing to shell out a buck for that one Pokemon you really want? Personally, with the vast improvements of the Global Trade Station in the latest version (especially the ability to search for Pokemon you haven't seen in game), and Nintendo's frequent distribution events, I don't think it would ever be necessary, or justified.

Source: 4gamer (Japanese) via Siliconera

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Well, what about the Rocket Game Corner?!? You didn't care about Pokemon then! :P

OT: Well, I'm glad at least they're more against using DLC pokemon than for. After all, it does kind of ruin the whole point of pokemon if you can't catch them all. That being said, it WOULD be nice if event pokemon weren't so dang hard to catch...or at least have new scenarios to catch them. I want my Mew dang nabbit!

xaszatm:
That being said, it WOULD be nice if event pokemon weren't so dang hard to catch...or at least have new scenarios to catch them.

Indeed... mons like Mew, Celebi, Jirachi or Deoxys haven't been widely available - i.e. available without extra concessions like going to a movie or being in the right place at the right time (often Japan) - to the general playerbase for many years. At least, in my experience.

And then there's the more recent ones that have only ever been available through special events that most people can't even apply for! And the devs have to work in ways to account for the special items or moves these Pokémon can use.[1] Looking at you in particular, Genesect, Keldeo and almost every other Gen 5 legendary. Oh, and Arceus. Its Plate items are scattered all across Kalos but I haven't seen hide nor hair of the Alpha in my copy of X.

[1] Makes me a bit sad when I remember the functions exist but I'll never get the chance to use them.

As much as I would be willing to shell out real money for the sole remaining pokemon I don't have from Gen's I to V (Celebi), this is probably for the best. Pokemon could really turn into a micro-transaction hell, not just pokemon themselves but also rare hold items, and it would ruin the series for me. Paid-for cheating would be no fun. That said, I would fully support DLC that unlocked new areas to visit, or a wider Battle Frontier style location.

I don't think it's such a bad idea, to a degree, making every pokemon available to buy is a massive no-no BUT

Making the legendary/event pokemon buyable is a good idea, making these event pokemon more accessible to other regions would be welcomed.

Finding events in Japan is easy, but Australia? We had 1 eb games store doing the meloetta event per state, 6 stores for the whole country (excluding ACT), If I wanted meloetta I would have had to drive 6 hours there and 6 hours back and even this is a rare occurance because half the time we don't get event pokemon at all.

I'd only pay for event Pokemon that I've missed over the years by getting back into Pokemon too late.

CounterAttack:

xaszatm:
That being said, it WOULD be nice if event pokemon weren't so dang hard to catch...or at least have new scenarios to catch them.

Indeed... mons like Mew, Celebi, Jirachi or Deoxys haven't been widely available - i.e. available without extra concessions like going to a movie or being in the right place at the right time (often Japan) - to the general playerbase for many years. At least, in my experience.

Mew, Jirachi, Celebi and Deoxys have all been available for event downloads via the Internet over the years and not requiring you to physically go anywhere. Deoxys was only a few months ago for Black/White/Black2/White2 if I recall and they gave away 4 different ones in 2010.

Maybe have DLC for things like Rare Candies, or whichever type of ball is the 100% guaranteed catch chance, and so on, but not for actual Pokemon themselves.

Unless it was FREE DLC for the Pokemon that you can't actually catch in-game because you don't live in Japan and can't go to the next Nintendo Expo or whatever.

CounterAttack:

xaszatm:
That being said, it WOULD be nice if event pokemon weren't so dang hard to catch...or at least have new scenarios to catch them.

Indeed... mons like Mew, Celebi, Jirachi or Deoxys haven't been widely available - i.e. available without extra concessions like going to a movie or being in the right place at the right time (often Japan) - to the general playerbase for many years. At least, in my experience.

And then there's the more recent ones that have only ever been available through special events that most people can't even apply for! And the devs have to work in ways to account for the special items or moves these Pokémon can use.[1] Looking at you in particular, Genesect, Keldeo and almost every other Gen 5 legendary. Oh, and Arceus. Its Plate items are scattered all across Kalos but I haven't seen hide nor hair of the Alpha in my copy of X.

They have made it so much easier now. For instance, I got my Mew and Celebi by simply going on the wifi on my 3DS. They really didn't make it that hard anymore.

I mean, the most many people have to do now is go to their local Gamestop.

[1] Makes me a bit sad when I remember the functions exist but I'll never get the chance to use them.

I'm really glad he's putting his foot down on this.

Any other company would of gladly milked this franchise to death with bullshit DLC like that. It's great to see that the devs behind Pokemon are willing and respectable enough to give you the full game and nothing short of it.

That being said, I find it great that Nintendo "joins the present" with DLC and are still more progressive about it by only charging a fucking dollar for it. That's it. One buck.

The most expensive DLC they ever did was NSLU at $20.00. Yet that came with 80 levels, Luigi and Nabbit as playable characters and an insane spike in difficulty.
So much so, that it might as well be a game within itself.

If Nintendo needs any confirmation that they are making the right call here they need only look at Diablo 3. Making the absolute core of your game available for 0 effort and a small amount of cash will ruin the entire experience. Selling pokemon is just as terrible an idea as selling items in Diablo.

I agree that adding buyable Pokemon while they have the giveaways and online trading doesn't seem like a good idea.

The only thing I wish they'd change is the length of some of the Wi-Fi and in store downloads. Some only go for a couple of weeks which I imagine would make it hard for a lot of people. Especially anyone who doesn't buy the games till later.

Whatislove:
I don't think it's such a bad idea, to a degree, making every pokemon available to buy is a massive no-no BUT

Making the legendary/event pokemon buyable is a good idea, making these event pokemon more accessible to other regions would be welcomed.

Finding events in Japan is easy, but Australia? We had 1 eb games store doing the meloetta event per state, 6 stores for the whole country (excluding ACT), If I wanted meloetta I would have had to drive 6 hours there and 6 hours back and even this is a rare occurance because half the time we don't get event pokemon at all.

They've actually gotten a lot better with the event distribution here. We get a lot more than we use to and since 4th gen all the event legendaries have been available in one way or another.

And you're a bit off about how many stores did the Meloetta event

http://www.nintendo.com.au/files/get-meloetta-location-list.pdf

Here is the 9 page list from Nintendo for all the stores that participated in Australia and New Zealand.

I would bet most of them are metropolitan and anyone in a rural area probably missed out, but it's definitely a step in the right direction.

However looking at the pdf I linked, New Zealand only had three stores across the whole country...

Sugimoro's conclusion, however, does not completely rule out the idea of having paid DLC in the future. "If we ever get the idea of 'this could be fun if we could sell it for real-life money,' or something similar during the planning of a future game, then perhaps we could sell them for 100 yen."

Would you be willing to shell out a buck for that one Pokemon you really want?

Are we sure his quote is intended to refer to selling pokemon?
I realise "...we could sell them..." implies this, but maybe thats an issue with translation/language barrier.
The rest of the article, and for that matter the rest of that quote makes me think he's specifically saying no to paying for pokemon, but maybe for other types of DLC.

Maybe one day we'll be able to buy Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, Sinnoh and whatever the hell the others were called as paid DLC/expansions?

I don't see the charm in catching the damn things, just for the sake of collecting. Making a team that is pretty much universal and can deal with anything thrown at it, is a challenge though and one that I think makes the game fun.
So paying for the pokeymans seems to me to be a lousy idea. I would pay for other challenges though, more story and/or towns.

I don't think they're more holy than other companies, with some of the new stuff I've seen. Like a floating keyring, a karate pokemon and some super generic ones like "Beartic". It pretty much is milking your audience when you release the same thing over and over, just with prettier graphics. Not much different from FIFA or NFL.
Don't be upset with that statement, I think the game is charming and I do enjoy playing it, I'm just pointing out that they're not the saints of the gaming industry.

walrusaurus:
If Nintendo needs any confirmation that they are making the right call here they need only look at Diablo 3. Making the absolute core of your game available for 0 effort and a small amount of cash will ruin the entire experience. Selling pokemon is just as terrible an idea as selling items in Diablo.

This. Forever this.

Things like XP/EV boosts, vitamins, Rare Candies, easily/repeatably obtainable hold items eg from Battle Frontier or equivalent, TMs before they became infinite use would theoretically be OK. Reason being, they don't give you any sort of advantage you couldn't get just by playing the actual game. That would be if they wanted to do shitty microtransactions.

The best way to do it would be to have DLC that unlocks new regions with high level trainers, gyms, wild pokes, more shitty teams to beat up etc. Basically more stuff to do after beating the League. If done well it would be awesome, and wouldn't be hard to whip up seeing as it would be using all the assets from the game.

I'm kinda torn here. I would like the opportunity to buy past events if I miss them, I did miss a few in Pokemon White, but at least I managed to get Deoxys. If they kept it to strictly event Pokemon and made it kinda like Victini or Celebi where there's actually some story tied to the Pokemon I would gladly pay for it.

I mean, with Pokemon Heart Gold you could actually travel back in time to prevent Giovanni from showing up when Team Rocket took control of the radio tower in order to contact him. I loved that part and I would easily shell out money for that. I got both that event and Celebi for free though so I am satisfied.

I wouldn't want a pay-to-catch system.

The whole idea of Pokémon is to travel the world, catch Pokémon and train them yourself.

What I would like is content patches (or maybe DLC) that add certain Pokémon that have been virtually impossible to get without cheating (thus rendering "Gotta Catch 'em All" nothing more than a pipe dream). Things like Deoxys, Jirachi et al. Even the ones that were easy to get, like the Genesect event which I managed to miss purely out of forgetfulness.

This would give us the means to get these Pokémon without just plain giving them to us.

Version exclusives are fine and all, but I'm kind of sick of having certain Pokémon be effectively region-locked or time-sensitive. I'd like to be able to have them all in the actual game cards.

I don't know about Pokémans themselves, but I would pay $5 for the ability to have multiple saves and/or backups. I bought digital because I wanted to be able to have more than one save and a backup of my precious Pokémans in case anything went wrong and I was more than a bit annoyed to discover that not only did they disable the 3DS's built in save backup tech for X & Y, they also went to the trouble of implementing a system that prevents backup saves of any sort.

Really Nintendo? $40 for a game you're going to intentionally limit? THIS is why people pirate.

Aside from that aggravation: The other DLC I'd want is the ability to visit other regions and run the other gyms. Pokémon has always had an issue with lacking true high level content, with the highest level wild Pokés at level 60ish with nothing to do but grind the Elite 4 (Which are level 60-68 in this gen) all the way to 100.

if it influences the battles: no.
everything else: why not, as long as the core game remains of quality.

In Pokemon X and Y they gave us the ability to personalize our trainer like an avatar. Just add a bunch of cool clothing and hairstyles to the store for 100yen each. I'd shell out for that. The day Pokemon are 100 yen each is the day I stop playing Pokemon.

Great, now just stop arbitrarily splitting pokemon between versions and including a bunch of event only legendaries and and that might actually matter.

I don't mind them adding paid, post-launch customization options or even just extra features like the bank. Paying for Pokemon, however, is just dumb. What's stopping someone from breeding it like crazy and spreading it all over? They should just do region expansions. Go to one of the old regions for another single player campaign and tons more mons to catch in the wild.

Lizardon:
I agree that adding buyable Pokemon while they have the giveaways and online trading doesn't seem like a good idea.

The only thing I wish they'd change is the length of some of the Wi-Fi and in store downloads. Some only go for a couple of weeks which I imagine would make it hard for a lot of people. Especially anyone who doesn't buy the games till later.

Whatislove:
I don't think it's such a bad idea, to a degree, making every pokemon available to buy is a massive no-no BUT

Making the legendary/event pokemon buyable is a good idea, making these event pokemon more accessible to other regions would be welcomed.

Finding events in Japan is easy, but Australia? We had 1 eb games store doing the meloetta event per state, 6 stores for the whole country (excluding ACT), If I wanted meloetta I would have had to drive 6 hours there and 6 hours back and even this is a rare occurance because half the time we don't get event pokemon at all.

They've actually gotten a lot better with the event distribution here. We get a lot more than we use to and since 4th gen all the event legendaries have been available in one way or another.

And you're a bit off about how many stores did the Meloetta event

http://www.nintendo.com.au/files/get-meloetta-location-list.pdf

Here is the 9 page list from Nintendo for all the stores that participated in Australia and New Zealand.

I would bet most of them are metropolitan and anyone in a rural area probably missed out, but it's definitely a step in the right direction.

However looking at the pdf I linked, New Zealand only had three stores across the whole country...

My mistake, There was an event that was only in 1 store per state, I just can't remember which, it might have been the pokemon movie one actually, now that I think of it.

Meloetta was still a pain in the ass though.

I live in Newcastle, NSW - It's about 2-2.5 hours from Sydney, it's not like we are a small, rural town or anything. World class stadium, LA galaxy played our local soccer team, there's about 10 or so EB games stores and just as many JB HiFi stores (both of the stores that were doing the Meloetta event) but not 1 of them got access to the meloetta event.

The closest was a 2 hour drive away to Sydney, and the craziest part about it is, I work at JB HiFi and I talked to the EB games guys downstairs at the time, the manager said he had the equipment needed for the event but wasn't given the authority/the software to actually do the event.

I wouldn't spend a dollar on a Pokémon, but I might spend money on some other sort of DLC for the game. Maybe access to an extra dungeon or something with its own entire set of additional Pokémon to catch, some puzzles to solve, and a cool extra-tough boss at the end. Heck, I'd even spend $3-$5 on that. But never on individual creatures.

P.S. Thanks

If this would lead to going back to Kanto without deleting my friend's old save of Yello- I mean Fire Red... Bring on them DLC re-visits, yo!

Otherwise, I'll be agreeing with Jim about DLC in general... which it seems they want to avoid that path into DLC territory, so at least I support their decision so far...

good -.- making Pokemon buyable would only cheapen the experience, not to mention voids the point of the game entirely

For years I have been playing Pokemon, and for years still I have not cared about completing my Pokedex, so even if I was offered a Jirachi or Celebi for $5 or so, I'd still turn it down. There's no way I'm going to pay money for something like that, especially since there are events that offer these Pokemon for free. Maybe I'd pay a $1... maybe.

I'm sure there are a lot of players out there that would be willing to pony up a little cash for some exclusive Pokemon outside of scheduled events, which is why paid DLC in Pokemon is such a slippery slope. It's one thing if the DLC added a new island or region or something, but just a single Pokemon is a strange idea to me.

Whatislove:
My mistake, There was an event that was only in 1 store per state, I just can't remember which, it might have been the pokemon movie one actually, now that I think of it.

Meloetta was still a pain in the ass though.

I live in Newcastle, NSW - It's about 2-2.5 hours from Sydney, it's not like we are a small, rural town or anything. World class stadium, LA galaxy played our local soccer team, there's about 10 or so EB games stores and just as many JB HiFi stores (both of the stores that were doing the Meloetta event) but not 1 of them got access to the meloetta event.

The closest was a 2 hour drive away to Sydney, and the craziest part about it is, I work at JB HiFi and I talked to the EB games guys downstairs at the time, the manager said he had the equipment needed for the event but wasn't given the authority/the software to actually do the event.

The only reason I knew that there was a fair few stores for Meloetta is because I had to look it up when it happened because the EB Games nearest to me wasn't doing it =D

Yeah I had another look at the list and it seems most of the stores are in the capital cities. Which I guess makes sense from a business perspective but sure sucks for those who can't make it. I'm really surprised that it missed Newcastle completely.

I've only moved to Perth recently from a country town, so I missed out on a lot of those events. I really have to wonder what is involved with setting up an event distribution, surely it can't be that expensive. And if it's that hard I wish they would just switch to all Wi-Fi events, give everyone a chance to get it.

I wouldn't mind a trainer tower DLC. Something along the lines of emerald or crystal.

More singleplayer end game content would be awesome. I liked second gen because the game wasn't over after the elite four. I really liked that and high level trainers are fun.

If nintendo did something like offered special event pokemon package deal stuff (like old event pokemon or ones that the west cant get or had a hard time getting cause tehy're through real world pokecenters) I'd probably spring for them. Hell even if each is only a dollar I'd pick and chooise and still spend a good chunk of change if they were really interesting. not while they're in store, but maybe like months later or something they say "hey, missed this event, one dollar and it can be yours". I wouldnt be opposed to that.

Lizardon:

Whatislove:
My mistake, There was an event that was only in 1 store per state, I just can't remember which, it might have been the pokemon movie one actually, now that I think of it.

Meloetta was still a pain in the ass though.

I live in Newcastle, NSW - It's about 2-2.5 hours from Sydney, it's not like we are a small, rural town or anything. World class stadium, LA galaxy played our local soccer team, there's about 10 or so EB games stores and just as many JB HiFi stores (both of the stores that were doing the Meloetta event) but not 1 of them got access to the meloetta event.

The closest was a 2 hour drive away to Sydney, and the craziest part about it is, I work at JB HiFi and I talked to the EB games guys downstairs at the time, the manager said he had the equipment needed for the event but wasn't given the authority/the software to actually do the event.

The only reason I knew that there was a fair few stores for Meloetta is because I had to look it up when it happened because the EB Games nearest to me wasn't doing it =D

Yeah I had another look at the list and it seems most of the stores are in the capital cities. Which I guess makes sense from a business perspective but sure sucks for those who can't make it. I'm really surprised that it missed Newcastle completely.

I've only moved to Perth recently from a country town, so I missed out on a lot of those events. I really have to wonder what is involved with setting up an event distribution, surely it can't be that expensive. And if it's that hard I wish they would just switch to all Wi-Fi events, give everyone a chance to get it.

From what I understand on how Gamestop does things is that they have a weird wireless adapter thing that transfers those pokemon to your game. I'm not sure if they have uses for other games or not, but if a store doesn't have one (or never bothered to acquire one) than they can't do it. It seems though that once they have it, they don't really have to do much effort on their part. I think the lady said they just need to update it to register any new event.

Many people have said this but i would be okay with them making event pokemon ok to purchase, or atleast the item to summon them, aslong as it is linked to them system or game as a whole so if i restarted for what ever reason i wouldnt have to buy again.

The problem with this is that no matter how you slice it, this could easily become "buying power." No matter how well DLC pokemon are balanced, in this game it is all about team composition. Having DLC pokemon with unique typing (say, a ghost normal type, which is immune to what normally is unresisted "ghost/fighting" moves) or unique move sets could leave "vanilla" players with fewer if any options to deal with the DLCmons.

Certain event mons, like Magic Bounce Espeon, have completely reshaped the metagame, giving certain players objective advantages to others (Espeon's normal ability, Syncornize, only gives the enemy the same status condition Espeon gets, Magic bounce throws back any status move, plus all other kinds of non-damaging moves). I can't even begin to grasp what would happen if people could pay for these advantages.

VanQ:
In Pokemon X and Y they gave us the ability to personalize our trainer like an avatar. Just add a bunch of cool clothing and hairstyles to the store for 100yen each. I'd shell out for that. The day Pokemon are 100 yen each is the day I stop playing Pokemon.

Or at least the option for more hair colors. Seriously blue hair is practically a staple of the series but I can't pick it? Blasphemy.

Kidding aside I would love if they released older regions as paid dlc. I can experience a setting I love, and maybe not have to pay full game price for it again. I mean, Emerald is still going for 35 bucks a pop, that thing hasn't depreciated at all so a Hoenn DLC pack for 25 would be a steal. If there was one area I felt X and Y were a little lacking in, it would be post game content. I'd pay five bucks for that.

Yeah, they prefer the 'Madden' School of content release.

I'm not in a position to get most event Pokémon. I probably would pay a buck or two (but no more) for them.

My Gamestop doesn't even have the wireless deal for event Pokémon, nor do the nearest 3.

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