We didn’t get any merchandise related news tonight from the official Pokemon site, so instead of the usual merchandise announcement review post, I come bearing a surprise Pokemon Center Report.
The second part of the Sapporo Center re-opening festivities happened Wednesday February 1st in Japan. Along with the Vulpix Pikachu Poncho promotion, there was also a cute little campaign. Starting February 1st, visitors to Pokemon Centers across Japan would get 1 clear art card featuring 1 of 3 random designs. Also, for every 2,000 yen spent, customers would receive 1 of 4 blind packaged coasters. Usually these randomly given out bonuses are not actually blind packaged but rather in a pile and randomly given out, so it was a surprise and honestly sort of a wasteful surprise since all that packaging is just going to go in the trash anyway, but you do you, Pokemon Center. Also, it seemed like the various Centers did not do a good job of shuffling the designs because a lot of people were getting doubles, triples, and quadruples of certain designs (sometimes even more) while getting very little to none of the others.
With big thanks to Japan Stuffs, I was able to get one of each of the non-exclusive designs.
The main Snowpix x Pikachu illustration
Lavender bed (Hokkaido is famous for lavender)
and ice cream (Hokkaido is also famous for dairy).
The Sapporo Center had an exclusive secret design for both the art cards and the coasters because they needed to do something special that was only for Sapporo.
Moving on to the merch!
Alola Vulpix Pikachu was the big seller of the day.
Both normal and mascot sizes sold out quickly on both Amazon and the online Pokemon Center store.
Regular Vulpix is not quite as popular (which I will never understand because he is my original true love)
and both him and his mascot size companion are still available on-line. To be fair, I think the red/brown color they chose, especially for the smaller mascot, is maybe a little too dark, but that doesn’t change the cuteness level.
On to the rest of the items…as seems to be the new tradition about bigger promotions, there was a special TCG box set, including two promo cards featuring both Alola and regular Vulpix Poncho Pikachus, plus card sleeves exclusive to the set and a little deck case, along with booster packs.
Two clearfiles, one with the Alola Vulpix
and one with regular Vulpix
A die-cut sticker set
Extra fancy stickers
Metal charms (which include the little tails on the back)
and.. Mori no Youkan! This is a food item from the Pokemon game. The English name for this item is “Old Gateau” but don’t be fooled – this isn’t cake.
It’s red bean paste. Even if you don’t like red bean paste (I don’t) the packaging is really pretty, and with each costing only 200 yen (a little under $2) it’s not that expensive for something you might not eat. But still.
The cutest items from the promotion – aside from the plush – were the human sized ponchos. The Alola version sold out surprisingly quickly, mainly due to scalpers who literally sweeped everything into their baskets as soon as it went on the shelves, repeatedly. Eff you, actual Pokemon fans, the bills are not going to pay themselves.
Original Vulpix version is equally as cute in my opinion and still around!
But speaking of scalpers needing to sell foxes for rent…
Guess who’s back!? Well at least were back for a few seconds before selling out again. I’m not sure if the Vulpix are still in stores, but they’re definitely gone on-line. At any rate, welcome back briefly, you little cuties, and goodbye again.
This weekend will bring us the next batch of Monthly Pair Pikachus, so until then!