Pokémon CEO Told Nintendo The Switch Wouldn’t Be Successful: ‘I Was Wrong’

The Pokémon Company has a very close relationship with Nintendo, but that doesn't either of them can't be honest with each other.

Before the Nintendo Switch even launched, The Pokémon Company's CEO Tsunekazu Ishihara had doubts whether it would prove to be a success or not. So, he told Nintendo he doesn't think it would sell.

Now, however, is a different story. The Switch is looking more like a runaway success, plagued by stock shortages from overwhelming demand. As a matter of fact, It's also breaking sales records.

The Nintendo Switch Is A Success

"I told Nintendo that Switch wouldn't be a success before it went on sale because I thought that in the age of the smartphone no one would carry around a game console," the Ishihara told Bloomberg in an interview.

For his part, Ishihara now admits he's obviously wrong about that prediction. He also came to a realization: great games or software leads to more hardware sales. If the software is good enough, people will adapt to the play style it requires. Whether it's meant to be played on a phone or on a dedicated handheld console.

His previous feelings toward the Switch might explain why there's no core RPG Pokémon title yet. It's often when Nintendo releases a new console, some developers will have already started making games even before such an announcement, so the consumer will have games to play once the console is released. Then again, it's Game Freak that develops the games and not Tsunekazu Ishihara, but it's easy to imagine him telling folks at Game Freak to wait and see if the Switch would be a success.

Pokémon On Nintendo Switch

True enough, there's now a core RPG Pokémon title in development, tipped to be the second Pokémon title on the Switch after Pokkén Tournament, which was first released on the Wii U in 2015.

Ishihara revealed some information about the upcoming game, saying the Switch, being a hybrid console, presents an opportunity to create Pokémon "that goes deeper" and are more expressive.

"[O]n a high-definition TV you can express a whole different world with graphics and sound," he said.

He also mentioned the Switch's multiplayer capabilities, saying the company is trying to figure out its approach to these gameplay elements.

It was previously believed that Game Freak was working on a title called Pokémon Stars, supposedly a remastered version of Pokémon Sun and Moon, which were released last year. No such announcement has been made.

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