Nerd Nook: Yo-kai Watch Influences Pokemon Sun and Moon

The popularity of Yo-kai Watch has the Pokemon franchise turning corners to level out the battlefield.

With a new release of the ‘Pokemon Sun and Moon’ anime in Japan, it is obvious to say that there are many changes and influences following from a strong competitor in Japan’s television networks.

‘Yo-kai Watch’ is one of the biggest rivals for the Pokemon franchise, being both a televised show airing in Japan and making its way to the United States and its audience. ‘Yo-kai Watch’ revolves around human actions and interactions that are caused by a ‘yo-kai’. In other words, a creature that constantly reflects upon a human character in every aspect of their lives. In the anime, our main protagonist, Nate and his yo-kai partner, Jibanyan, go around town putting order into other mischievous yo-kai while also helping his friends deal with problems that are caused by other yo-kai.

To start off, one of the major and most noticeable changes to ‘Pokemon Sun and Moon’ that reflects back on ‘Yo-kai Watch’ is the drastic change in art style. In the previous series of the Pokemon anime, ‘Pokemon XY’, the art style has reflected a clean, sharp, and have vibrant color schemes, making our main protagonist, Ash Ketchum, more grown as more seasons are released. This allowed the audience that were once kids to enjoy the show as they are grown up.

Now, in the current Pokemon series, we see that the characters have been given a makeover with a simple and more round style. Thus, reversing the look of Ash that makes him appear younger. Given that, ‘Yo-kai Watch’ already had a simple art style, Pokemon takes change to compete with a popular rival.

With the appearance of Ash being reversed back to a younger face, the Pokemon franchise’s target audience has been redirected towards younger audiences and leaving behind the ones who watched the show as kids and continued to when simultaneously growing up with the show. With that being said, it is apparent to us that ‘Yo-kai Watch’ has always been targeting very young audiences, giving us correlation between the two shows.

Since the start of the show, ‘Yo-kai Watch’ always maintained tons of satire in their plot stories. This is bringing a comedic feel into the show, capturing the attention of young children. Before the release of ‘Pokemon Sun and Moon’, exaggeration was kept to a bare-minimum. However, the current season of Pokemon has inputted high levels of comedic satire and again, corresponding with ‘Yo-kai Watch’.

Overall, the changes made to the nostalgic Pokemon anime has been manipulated to a downfall. Ash’s adventure in the Kalos region (the previous season) has been a major upgrade to the entire anime. We were given more character development not only to Ash himself, but to his friends that were with him along his journey when getting deeper into the episodes. Now, we urgently wait for the release of the English-dubbed episodes in early 2017.