Wondering which series is better? Digimon or Pokemon? Read on to find a detailed verdict on Digimon Vs Pokemon below!
Pokemon might be everyone’s favorite childhood show and it’s literally the introductory phase of every anime enthusiast to the anime world. Similarly, Digimon has also made it to the spotlight for being one of the favorite kid’s shows of all time.
For those wondering if Digimon was just another version of Pokemon then it’s about time, you learn how different Pokemon and Digimon are.
Although both Pokemon and Digimon have visible differences such as rhyming names and monsters with surreal abilities, they are completely different shows with distinct storylines, characters, and plots.
If you’re looking to educate yourself with the plots and details of both the shows then you’re just in the right place. Below we have discussed the storylines of the shows, similarities and differences, and everything you need to know about both the franchises.
Digimon Vs Pokemon
The Pokemon Franchise
Pokemon or Pocket Monsters is a Japanese television anime series that was released in April 1997. Initially, Pokemon was released as a video game series created by The Pokemon Company which was owned by a group of companies like Nintendo, Creatures, and Game Freak.
The first installments of Pokemon games were called Pokemon Red and Green and were available in the original Nintendo Game Boy.
The show was released one year after the huge success of the video game. The Pokemon anime series was directed by Kunihiko Yuyama and was written by Takeshi Shudo. It initially aired on TV Tokyo in Japan in 1997 and has 24 blockbuster seasons with countless episodes.
Currently, you’ll find Pokemon anime series streaming on famous streaming sites like Netflix. Pokemon is yet a successfully running franchise that keeps its fans entertained with many adaptations and games coming every year.
- Related: Best Japanese Cartoons for Children
The storyline of Pokemon focuses on the protagonist of the show, Ash Ketchum. Living in a fictional world, Ash aspires to become a Pokemon Master and acquire and discover rare Pokemons. Pokemon are small pocket monsters who reside in Poke Balls and they possess different powers which Pokemon trainers use to partake in competitions.
Ash was given his first Pokemon by a Pokemon researcher called Professor Oak. The Pokemon Ash received was Pikachu which has electric powers. Both Ash and Pikachu would embark on adventurous journeys and learn about other Pokemon. Pikachu is the literal identity of the Pokemon franchise and also the most adored Pokemon by most anime fans.
Some other popular Pocket Monsters that are loved by anime enthusiasts are Snorlax, Jigglypuff, Pichu, Charmander, and Eevee, etc.
The Digimon Franchise
Digimon or Digital Monsters is another famous Japanese anime television series that was released in 1999. However, the production of the Digimon franchise began during the year 1997 when it first released its virtual pet which is a handheld device children and adults can play with.
The first ever Digimon anime season was released in 1999 and was named Digimon Adventure and it was one of the best anime series at that time. In the same year, the Digimon franchise expanded and released its first video game called Digimon World.
The Digimon anime series was created by Bandai and produced by Toei Animation and its first episode ran on March 7 1999 on Fuji TV.
The anime series was one of the most viewed anime shows during the time and also expanded its franchise by introducing video games with different genres such as roleplay, fighting, and racing, card games, and attractive merchandise. The franchise also triumphed in its initial product, the virtual pet.
Unlike Pokemon, the Digimon anime series is based on an alternate world called Digiworld where digital monsters reside. A group of teenagers is sent to the Digiworld where they befriend Digimons and are forced to use them to save the Digiworld and also their original world.
The concept of alternate timelines followed by the Digimon series depicts that they were way ahead of their time.
The most powerful Digital Monster is Gaiamon which is a villainous Digimon that’s capable of wiping out the human race.
Digimon Vs Pokemon: Initial releases, Seasons and Episodes
Since we’ve covered the storylines and history of both the anime shows it’s time we speak about their initial releases, ideas, and how the franchises have become one of the most famous cultures worldwide.
Although Nintendo brags about the ownership of the Pokemon franchise, the masterminds behind this successful project are Satoshi Tajiri, Ken Sugimori, and Junichi Masuda.
As mentioned before, Pokemon was initially released to the world as a game with its first game being Pocket Monsters Red and Green in 1996. The animated series was released in 1997 with the first season named Pokemon: Indigo League.
It features the story of how Ash Ketchum is introduced to his first Pokemon and his adventures. The first season consists of 55 episodes with some episodes being banned.
As of 2021, the Pokemon anime has 24 seasons with over 1000 episodes that were watched tirelessly by Pokemon fans.
Digimon was released in 1999 with its first season being named Digimon Adventures. The first season consists of 54 episodes and was written by Reiko Yoshida and directed by Mamoru Hosada.
It’s focused on seven teenagers who are transported to the Digiworld through their Digivices where they meet Digital Monsters. The teenagers use the Digimon to save the Digiworld and the world they came from.
The anime series expanded with a total of 10 seasons that were released in the following years and has over 500 episodes which are comparatively less to Pokemon.
Some of the best Digimon seasons are X- Evolution, Digimon Adventures 1 and 2, and Frontiers.
Who Owns Digimon and Pokemon?
There’s a major misconception that both Pokemon and Digimon are owned by the same company. It’s time to put that misconception to rest. They are both owned by completely different creators and companies.
As mentioned above, Pokemon was commenced as a gaming company and was initially owned only by Nintendo. Later, Nintendo formed a joint venture between two other companies called Creatures, Inc and Gamefreaks to expand the Pokemon franchise. Currently, the franchise is referred to as The Pokemon Company.
Meanwhile, Digimon is created and owned by three other companies. The first creator of Digimon is Akiyoshi Hongo and later the franchise was controlled by Toei Animation which is responsible for the production of Digimon anime and Bandai which mostly controls the game and merchandise.
Another misconception regarding both the anime franchises is if one or the other is a ripoff. This is a false claim or theory that was speculated without a basis. Just because Pokemon and Digimon end with ‘mon’ it doesn’t necessarily make them ripoffs of each other.
Pokemon is focused on the protagonist acquiring Pocket Monsters to become a Pokemon Master whereas Digimon is solely based on a group of kids using the Digital Monsters to save the world.
Pokemon Vs Digimon: Adaptations, Games, and Merchandise
There are several Pokemon adaptations and movies that have been released over the course of years such as Pokemon Jirachi, Pokemon Heroes,
Pokemon 4ever, etc. The most favorite Pokemon live-action movie is Detective Pikachu starring Ryan Reynolds as Detective Pikachu.
When it comes to games, the Pokemon franchise has created games that are some of the top best games of all time. Pokemon GO was one of the most played and successful Pokemon games of all time which has more than 800,000 users playing the game daily. Other famous Pokemon games are Pokemon Platinum, Pokemon Red and Blue, Pokemon FireRed and LeafGreen, etc.
Let’s also not forget the Pokemon trading cards game which most kids are obsessed with. It was initially released in 1996 and has since been in trend, unlike other game trends which have failed over time. The Pokemon trading card games consist of several Pokemon characters that are displayed in cards showing their powers and abilities.
Pokemon merchandise is a must if you’re a Pokemon fan. You’ll find a variety of Pokemon merch like plushies, personalized items, toys, and dresses, etc
Meanwhile, Digimon has a few adaptations like Digimon: The Movie which was released in February 2020 in Japan. There are a total of nine Japanese Digmon film adaptations to date including Digital Monster X- Evolution.
Digimon has a wide variety of video games that can be played on phones and Nintendo Game Boy Advance, Xbox, and Playstations.
There is also Digimon card games and merchandise such as T-shirts, mugs, toys, and accessories that are themed with Digimon characters.
In conclusion, both Pokemon and Digimon are completely different franchises that have their own way of producing entertainment content and marketing them. Although both franchises have rhyming names they aren’t necessarily sequels and ripoffs of each other.
They’re both better in their own ways and aspects. Pokemon has been in fame since the day of its release and also has one of the largest anime fandoms. And Digimon is known to have a distinct and interesting storyline for its anime series.
Digimon Vs Pokemon: FAQs
Which is older Digimon or Pokemon?
The Pokemon franchise is older than Digimon because it was initially introduced in 1995 while Digimon only came into the limelight in 1997. Pokemon was first introduced as a game series on Nintendo Gameboy and was later adapted into an anime series.
Is Digimon better than Pokemon?
Digimon and Pokemon have completely different storylines and characters. Digimon can be considered better than Pokemon in some aspects like the storyline of Digimon can be seen improving and getting darker unlike the adventurous story of Pokemon.
Is Digimon a ripoff of Pokemon?
Although both anime series have some similarities such as young characters, targeted towards children and fictional monsters, they are completely distinct from one another. Digimon is based on characters saving the world from impending doom and Pokemon focuses on trainers attempting to acquire the best Pokemon.
Why is Digimon not as popular as Pokemon?
Pokemon is much popular than Digimon because they used some of the best marketing strategies to attract kids such as developing new games, movies and maintaining the continuity of the anime series which helped the Pokemon franchise to grow.
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