It’s crazy to think, but the Pokémon franchise has been a part of our pop culture lexicon for fifteen years now. You know all the little kids who started playing when they were six or seven? Well, they’re old enough to go to the bars now – and, to be honest, a lot of them are probably still playing Pokémon. Fans of the game have multiple opportunities to compete with their well-crafted teams all over the country throughout the year. There are official tournaments, local organizations, and fan-created leagues. Sound like something you’re interested in? Here is some information on a few types of Pokémon competitions:
Pokémon cards of the three starters from the Black and White deck.
POKEMON TCG NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
The Pokémon Trading Card Game (TCG) Championship Series runs for almost a full year – it begins in September and culminates with the World Championship event in August. The first tier of the competition is known as Battle Road. That’s followed by events for city and state championships and then a national event. After that comes the World Championships, where winners from Asia and Europe also compete. There are three divisions in this tournament, organized by age: junior, senior and masters.
POKEMON VIDEO GAME CHAMPIONSHIPS
The 2011 Pokémon Video Game Championship (VGC) is already underway. The first of the six regional events took place on May 14 and the Last Chance Qualifier is on July 8 in Indiana. Players competing in the VGC craft their own six-Pokémon team and battle with their Nintendo DS over infrared connections. Prizes aren’t announced yet for the World Championship event, but some national-level prizes include a medal, a Nintendo 3DS, and airfare plus accommodations for the World Championship, which takes place mid-August in San Diego.
There are many fans of the Pokémon trading card game that hold local tournaments for players who don’t necessarily want to join an official competition. These events tend to be more casual and are aimed at all levels of players. They usually take place at a community center, comic book shop, library, or other public places. Leaders of these leagues can register through the Pokémon website and receive licensed advertising materials, foil cards to use as prizes, and official scorecards. These leagues meet once a week and the cycles last one year, with eight seasons. People interested in this type of Pokémon play can visit the official website’s event locator to find a league near them.
The Grey League is fan-created Pokémon competition from the makers of Pokémon Podcast. The goal of this online-only competition is to recreate the gym battles from the video games. Eight gym leaders were selected for interested players to face off against for the chance to win. Upon beating each gym leader, challengers win a badge. If all eight gyms are defeated, the challenger is sent a prize pack. All of the battles are conducted using a Nintendo DS, the Pokémon Black and White game, and a wireless internet connection. Click here for more information on The Grey League!
For those of you who are still curious about how a few things work, visit the official Pokémon site or search YouTube for TCG or VGC. There are plenty of videos online of exciting battles in championships!
MaDonna Flowers writes for T-Shirts.com while she’s not busy training her MewTwo. Check out their video game t-shirts .