The Pokemon franchise has huge potential in the NFT market. But if so, why haven’t we seen a famous NFT Pokemon game on the market yet? Does Nintendo have any plans for such a game in the future?
The latest installment in the hugely successful Pokemon franchise, Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, has just been released and has many die-hard fans of the series wanting to buy it right away. So both Web2 and Web3 players are wondering: will there be a Pokemon game for Web3 as well?
Pokemon is an iconic video game and anime series featuring several unique creatures that players can collect, trade, and use in battles against other players. The game is developed by GameFreak and published by Nintendo. The type of game that focuses on collecting items makes it the perfect game for an online NFT game. Combining Pokemon’s large user base and web3’s complementary features, an official Pokemon game could see GameFi gain widespread adoption quickly.
So is there already a Pokemon NFT game? The answer is yes and no. As of now, there is no official Pokemon game sponsored by Nintendo. The Japanese video game company has expressed interest in cryptocurrencies and NFT, noting that there could be future potential in this space. However, it has also said that it is currently difficult to “bring joy” in this area.
That means we may see an official Pokemon NFT game at some point, but not anytime soon. That doesn’t mean it won’t also spawn a few instances of the concept or inspiration.
Pokemon inspired web3 games
There are currently plenty of Pokemon-inspired games trying to win over the huge audience of the established series. A few well-known games like Kryptomon and Ax Infinity are listed here.
Kryptomon offers live NFTs within the Binance Smart Chain blockchain where users can breed their creatures and participate in real-time lunar events. The project uses $KMON as game currency. In addition to training, breeding, and battling their NFT creatures, they can also use their coins to provide liquidity to the community, known as staking.
While not directly inspired by Pokemon, Axie Infinity brings the cute creatures and in-game battles to the blockchain. As with the original Pokemon series, players can battle, sell, and even trade their Axies, but since it’s on the blockchain, users do it primarily for profit.
However, not every copy is a well-thought-out game with the developers putting their personal spin on the genre. Since cryptocurrencies are a gray area when it comes to copyright, copies of copyrighted Pokemon features and phrases also exist. These developers take advantage of web3’s anonymity and often trick fans into believing they are legitimate Pokemon partners.
It is important to remember that creators should be properly researched before being believed. When considering whether Nintendo should aim for an NFT version of Pokemon, there are also a few factors to keep in mind.
While the franchise seems perfectly suited to an NFT-like economy, moving to web3 can also come with major drawbacks. A key part of the franchise’s tagline is to “catch ’em all,” but with the introduction of NFTs, that could prove utterly impossible and greatly upset many fans of the original series.
If Nintendo wants to expand Pokemon to the web3, it would be a safe bet to venture into Pokemon card NFTs. Not only could that be an additional revenue stream, but it could also serve as a testing ground to see how fans are coping with the switch to GameFi.
Edmond is a passionate writer for video games, GameFi and Web3. He has worked for leading GameFi companies and video game/crypto news websites.