Pokemon Cultural Impact
Pokemon have had a very important cultural impact in many countries where it has been imported. In Japan, Pokemon became popular, selling more than one million copies of Pocket Monsters in 1996. At the Tokyo Game Show in 1997, players could get the Mew Pokemon by downloading their games. The result was a queue that was 4 km, with some people camping overnight before the show. Arriving in the United States, the Red and Blue versions sold more than 200 000 units in two weeks, then continued to sell at an average of 800 000 units per month. Both versions were the best games sold by Nintendo. At that point in time they were the best-selling games in the history of video games. Pokemon Pinball was the game released on Game Boy and it sold even more quickly, with more than 262 000 units sold in 20 days. The series that was distributed by Hasbro toys were also commercial successes. As the television series grew in popularity, so did Hasbro which surpassed its main competitor, Mattel, in 2000. The games were so popular that Hasbro was unable to gather enough toys to satisfy demand. Wizards of the Coast had the same problem with the card game collectibles, and has sold over 50 million cards between January and March 1999. As of July, 1999, Pokemon had generated more than $ 5 billion.
The phenomenon also affected European countries, like France, where the Red and Blue versions were the best-selling games of 1999 and a million copies of each were sold as of June 2000, less than a year after its launch in France. The animated series was broadcast in several countries, including the United States, Australia, Japan, and Canada.