Gaming

Random: One Pokemon Fan’s Mission to correctly identify every last Pokemon designer

Image: pokemon company

When several people are working on a project, such as a video game, sometimes many a few people – often fans attribute the hard work to the most outstanding designer or director they can think of. Even in individual aspects such as music, art, level design, and many other elements that make up a video game as a whole, there are usually one or two prominent names in each department that remain in the minds of people who tend to be credited with the entire shebang. This is a mistake that many of us make from time to time!

This often happens with Pokemon designs. The two most famous franchise designers are Ken Sugimori and James Turner. Many tend to attribute the design of many early pocket monsters to the former, while Turner is often at the forefront of adorable creature art in modern games. But with so many designs to choose from and over 900 Pokémon to catch and marvel at, it’s just not possible for two people to come up with each and every one of these fabulous creations! And yes, we consider Trubbish and Garbodor under the auspices of “fabulous creations”.

Ken Sugimori often draws a lot of Pokémon, but he didn't draw these two.
Ken Sugimori often draws a lot of Pokémon, but he didn’t draw these two. (Image: Ken Sugimori)

However, one fan wants to change this view. Known as Altruis on Bulbapedia, they make a list of Pokémon for each generation based on their designers. With such a large Pokédex, it sounds like a Heracross challenge, especially with many older titles such as Pokémon Red and Blue and Pokémon Gold and Silver, as original artists are much more difficult to find.

To make sure the information they upload is correct, Altrius only uses sources such as official interviews done with artists, or contact and ask directly. However, with more recent games, many designers often share their creations and joy via social media, like freelance artist Yusuke Kozaki who came up with the awesome, electrifying Toxtricity from Pokémon Sword and Shield.

One of the biggest revelations is that the person responsible for the design of the rosy-cheeked Pikachu – Atsuko Nishida – is actually responsible for a ton of fan favorites like the original starting trio, Zorua, and many of the Eeveelutions.

You can keep checking the list as more and more information is revealed, and more details are added about the artists, Pokémon, and their designers. But we think it’s a fantastic resource that sheds light on the unsung heroes of the Pokémon franchise. Some people might never have found their favorite pocket monsters without these designs. We’re wondering who will be designing the new Pokémon we’re sure to encounter in the upcoming Pokémon Scarlet and Violet.

Share your favorite Pokemon designs with us in the comments below!




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