Games

Pokémon UNITE Set to Become Japan’s Big Esports Hit

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Pokémon UNITE

The Pokémon franchise is without a doubt one of the most durable and compelling storylines around.  Throughout the years it has evolved, bringing new forms of entertainment as it went on.  Now, though, Pokémon has been reborn once again and this time it’s not an outdoors chase of the unique powerful species, but rather a massive online battle arena or MOBA. Yes, Pokémon will try its hand at this unique genre.  Unlike other MOBAs before it, Pokémon UNITE clearly has the rich background to make the experience entertaining and meaningful to millions of fans worldwide. This puts the game in a unique position to conquer the global esports summits and do so as the first Switch game to achieve massive recognition.

While the Japanese esports industry is still developing, many of the new esports games in 2021 are expected to come from Japan and so far as Pokémon UNITE goes, this seems to be a confirmation of this trend.

 

What Would Pokémon UNITE Need to Become an Esport?

Evidently, any game that makes it into a fully-fledged esports comes with a number of amazing features, as well as depth and ease of the gameplay that immediately hook players. When you think of Dota 2 and League of Legends,  Well, if these are the defining features of a successful esports title, it seems that Pokémon UNITE is not only set to make a name for the game but also expand the esports economy in Japan.  There are many reasons why we believe the game is going to contribute to expanding the Japanese economy when it comes to competitive video gaming. For starters, Japan didn’t have much of a competitive esports scene in 2018.

Gamers couldn’t compete in real money tournaments, even though the country produced many talented players. However, things have changed, and Japan is now trying to find its place in the competitive gaming world.  One way to achieve distinction is by propelling the country’s own esports genre. Japan is already home to many compelling titles that have been established as some of the leading franchises, including Street Fighter, Super Smash Bros., and now Pokémon UNITE.

 

Plenty of Room for Mistakes in Pokémon UNITE

Another reason to enjoy Pokémon UNITE so much is that it has clearly learned its lessons from the existing MOBA games currently on the market, creating a compelling argument for why Japan is capable of producing completely unique esports titles.  The game has introduced many unique features that allow you to quickly browse through its entire offer and see what makes the most sense to you. For, instance, there is a unique “FAIR PLAY” rating which is designed to eliminate a common bugbear that the majority of MOBA game players complain about seems to have no answer to – toxic behavior. Even though toxicity has been ascribed to Dota 2, it has permeated the League of Legends community.

However, Pokémon UNITE is coming prepared. The community will be able to go through a detailed character sheet that would allow everyone to see what people perceive of an individual. This, in turn, should contribute to a more tolerable in-game environment, and perhaps even uproot some of the issues the Western MOBA communities experience.  The point of the detailed character sheet is not to pry, though. There is a lot that can be learned from browsing the game, such as looking up an opponent’s favorite Pokémon, battle record, and more.  All of this points to the simple fact that the game is really going to push as a competitive title.

 

A Few Concerns

Most MOBA games in the West rely on the Free-to-Play model, which is a great way to get people involved, your brand known, and generally boost interaction with the community. However, Pokémon UNITE will go with a Free-to-Start model.  This model has already been tested successfully in many games and even League of Legends are beginning to experiment with more paid features to make it well worth players’ time by offering some distinct add-ons to the game.  Of course, it’s important to take a Free-to-Start model with a grain of salt, as this model has been known to backfire. Besides, the majority of esports games today are free-to-play and that includes awesome games that generate millions of fans worldwide.  Pokémon UNITE doesn’t seem to be intent on using its Free-to-Start model greedily either. The game’s universe is rich and exciting and it stands to reason that Nintendo players will want to see what it can offer them.

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