The newest Pokemon XY Break expansion set, Awakening Psychic King, was released today in Japan, along with a couple auxiliary TCG goods, including two new battle decks and 4 Pokemon Center exclusive card sleeves.
I guess the Center knew that the sleeves would be popular because even with a weekday release, they decided to put the sleeves behind the counter instead of on display in the store. This means no nice display picture, but I’d give up the in-store display for drama-free sleeve buying. The past couple of Friday sleeve releases resulted in me showing up to the Center very early and there being no line, but that was not the case today; the line pre-opening was longer than the line on Wednesday for the Kyoto Center promotion!
Everyone loves Eevee(lutions).
Along with a non-exclusive Zygarde Perfect Forme design (not pictured) there was the very popular Eeveelution design
Occult Maniac with Banette buddy
Ho-oh and Smeargle
and Octillary, whose name sounds nothing like Octillary in Japanese (random observation).
These deck boxes, featuring the main Awakening Psychic King artwork, also went on sale today
Along with two Perfect Battle Decks: Zygarde EX
and Audino EX.
The Audino and Mega Audino EX cards are especially adorable, and although I went in to the store today not planning on buying one of these sets, after seeing the card list (each battle deck comes with different sets of 60 cards) I’m tempted to pick one up…
I did end up buying 5 packs of booster cards in the hopes that I would pull one of the new Minccino cards.
Out of 5 packs, I pulled 2 Cinccinos. So close yet so far! Also another reason to buy the Audino Battle Deck because it comes with 2 Minccino~ (my babu)
The second half of this clearfile campaign also started today. Customers can pick 1 clearfile from these 3 designs for every purchase at the Pokemon Center, while supplies last.
Not ready for the week of releases to be over? Stay tuned for tomorrow when a new batch of kuttari plush, the very first monthly pair pikachu, and this year’s Pokemon Easter promotion are released!
[Banpresto] Pokemon XY & Z – Kororin Friends (Eevee, Glaceon, Leafeon)
[Banpresto] Pokemon XY & Z – Kororin Friends – Large Eevee
[Pokemon Center] Pokemon With You – Garden of Smiles
[Banpresto] Pokemon XY & Z – Kororin Friends (Flareon, Jolteon, Vaporeon)
[Takara Tomy] Pokemon Get Collection Candy Figures – Kalos League Edition (Ash’s Greninja, Audino, Goodra, Gourgeist, Mega Charizard X, Noivern, Pikachu, Sylveon, Zygarde, Zygarde 10%)
[Pokemon Center] Kyoto Center Opening
[TCG] Awakening Psychic King (Expansion Pack)
[TCG] Perfect Battle Deck (Zygarde Perfect Forme EX), Mega Battle Deck (Mega Audino EX)
[TCG] Non Exclusive Card Sleeves: Zygarde Perfect Forme | Pokemon Center Exclusive Card Sleeves: Ho-oh / Smeargle, Eeveelutions, Octillery, Banette / Occult Maniac
[TCG] Deck Case (Mega Alakazam)
[Ichiban Kuji] Pokken Tournament
[Pokemon Center] Monthly Pair Pikachu
[Pokemon Center] Kuttari Plush (Ampharos, Chespin, Croagunk, Gallade, Pichu, Piplup, Victini)
[Pokemon Center] Easter Promotion
[Pokemon Center On-Line] 68 cm Sleeping Pikachu Plush, Normal Size Sleeping Pikachu Plush
[Pokemon Center On-Line] Re-release of all Monthly Pikachu plush
[Pokemon Center On-Line Campaign] Receive 1 of 3 on-line store exclusive mugs for every 5,000 yen spent
[MonColle] Ash’s Greninja Figure Pack (Ash, Froakie, Frogadier, Greninja), Mega Blaziken Attack Pose, Mega Lucario Attack Pose, Noivern Attack Pose, Zygarde Perfect Forme
[Banpresto] Pokemon XY & Z – Large Eevee Face Cushion
[Banpresto] (Re-release) Pikachu Mania! Face & Butt Cushions
[Banpresto] Pokken Tournament DXF Figure – Lucario
[Pokemon Center] Ditto Transformation Promotion
[Campaign] Receive 1 of 5 Pikachu stickers for every 1,000 yen spent at a Pokemon Store or Outlet Store (Pokemon Centers are excluded)
[Merchandise] Keyboard Pikachu Plush
[Merchandise] Mini Kororin Plush (Dedenne, Piplup, Torchic, Winking Pikachu)
The Tokyo Pokemon Center moved from Hamamatsucho to Ikebukuro a little over a year ago. Along with the change in location, the Center also changed it’s name from “Tokyo” to “Mega Tokyo” and changed the mascots from Pikachu, Froakie, and Charmander to Pikachu and Mega Charizard Y.
There was, of course, a big promotion in honor of both the move and the re-opening, with tons of merchandise featuring the original Poncho Pikachu, affectionately referred to as “Pikazard”, and as part of the promo, there were gachapon figures of Pikachu wearing his little Mega Charizard Y poncho in various poses.
The Pokemon Center decided to celebrate the anniversary of the re-opening by giving us the Pikachu Mega Campaign. Along with a semi re-release of the original Pikazard plush (the tags are different but otherwise they are basically the same), we also got 6 other poncho wearing Pikachus, including a Mega Charizard X version, and a brand new set of gachapon figures, this time not only of the original Pikazard but of the other Poncho Pikachus as well.
When the original Pikazard gacha set came out, it was originally limited to the Mega Tokyo Center location for the first few weeks. This upped the level of want for these figures and they quickly sold out (although they did get restocked and are currently still in stock). This time, however, all the Centers across Japan had access to to the Pikachu Poncho (or Pika-Pon) set at the same time, and as a result, the demand was not quite as crazy. As of this posting, there is plenty of stock.
On Saturday, they had a separate line specifically for the gacha machines, which were set up in a corner of the store close to where the Pikachu Mega Shop is located. Customers were limited to up to 10 tries at once, but you could play another 10 times if you went back into line and waited again. There was enough people to make up a constant line once the Center opened but wait time was only around 5 minutes max. The set had exactly 7 figures (Pikazard Y, Pikazard X, Mega Lucario, Mega Audino, Mega Altaria, Mega Slowbro, Mega Sableye) with no secret figures.
Although I do like playing gachas in certain circumstances, in general I dislike blind packaged figure sets because a lot of it is down to luck, and if you can only play a couple of times, the chances of you pulling the figure you want is not good…especially if you’re Miki and your luck is abysmal. Which brings me to my last point on this weekend’s gacha release: the Pokemon collecting community in general is very nice and everyone loves trading. I ended up playing multiple times in order to pull a full set, which meant I had extras. I hung out around the capsule disposal corner and made at least two people happy by trading them figures they had been hoping to get, and I got to practice my Japanese at the same time, so everyone was a winner.
Moving on to the figures themselves – I was very impressed with how they came out. With tiny figures, paint jobs can be hit or miss, which can lead to annoying situations where you’re after a figure and you get 1 of it, and there is a paint smudge or a misprint. These figures, while small, are not teeny tiny, and although I did notice a few very small paint problems on 1 or 2, for the most part the figures were big enough that this was a non-issue.
I mostly played for other people this time around (as I mentioned, my priority was to get a full set for a friend) but there were a couple figures I had to keep for myself, including both Pikazards. I wanted Pikazard Y for sentimental reasons, and X because they go together.
My main want was Mega Lucario, though, who I was able to pull fairly quickly. I was not disappointed with this figure at all. Look at that smug face!
I was so happy, I ran around the store posing him with all the other Lucarios.
Ahem. How does the new set compare with the original Pikazards? Size is the first most noticeable difference. Quality is next; the semi smudgy paint job on the original is more obvious next to the newer version. I also prefer the yellow color they used on the new Pikachus vs the originals as it’s less of a soda pop / neon yellow.
Unrelated to Pikazards, a brand new Ash plushie also came out this weekend. For being a human plush, I think it came out pretty well!
On a parting note, the next set of prizes from the I Love Mew Banpresto series is coming out on Thursday. I’ll be going out to catch a bunch of these little pink cuties and will try and get a report up on the same day, so stay tuned!
January Release – Date Unspecified
[Gacha] Can Badge Collection XY&Z (Ash’s Greninja, Braixen, Chespin, Dedenne, Eevee, Mega Charizard X, Pikachu, Sylveon, Zygarde Core, Zygarde Perfect Form)
[Pokemon Center] New Years Monthly Pikachu Set (2 plush = 2,500 yen)
[Pokemon Center] Pokemon Market
[Pokemon Center Mega Tokyo] New Years Lucky Bags (5,000 yen)
[TCG] Pokemon XY Break Special Card Box (Pikazard X | Pikazard Y) (1 box = 2,500 yen)
[TCG] Card sleeves (Mega Lucario Chu | Mega Slowbro Chu | Mega Sableye Chu | Mega Audino, Mega Altaria, Mega Diancie) (1 pack of 32 sleeves = 362 yen)
[Kuji] Pokemon Card Game Kuji
[Campaign] Distribution start for the second set of Pikachu Mega Campaign illustration cards
[Banpresto] I Love Mew – Large Mew Plush
[Pokemon Center] February Monthly Pikachu
[Pokemon Center] Pokemon Time Part 9
[Pokemon Center] Pokemon Sketch
[Pokemon Center] 20th Anniversary Clearfile
[Collaboration] Its’Demo Valentine’s
[Gacha] Mega Pikachu Gacha Figures (Mega Altaria, Mega Audino, Mega Lucario, Mega Sableye, Mega Slowbro, Pikazard X, Pikazard Y) (1 try = 300 yen)
[Merchandise] Ash Plush
[Banpresto] I Love Mew – 4 Mew Plush
[Collaboration] Its’Demo Valentine’s (Pikachu Plush, Slippers, and Pair Mascot)
[Banpresto] Charizard Sleeping Bag Pikachu Plush
[MonColle] Reshiram (Overdrive), Zekrom (Overdrive)
[Collaboration] Its’Demo Necklace Restock
[Banpresto] We Meet Again Pikachu Plush
[TCG] Poke-Kyun Collection
[TCG] Premium PokeKyun Box Set
[TCG] PokeKyun Mini Binder Set (Pokemon Center | 7-11 Exclusive)
[Ichiban Kuji] Pikachu Sleeping Bag Collection – Nuku Nuku Style –
[Collaboration] Pre-sale of All-Stars Second Wave plush at Kiddyland starts
This Saturday was not only the start of the Pikachu Mega Campaign and the opening of the Pikachu Mega Shop, but also marked the 1 year anniversary of the Mega Tokyo Pokemon Center. There was a lot going on and this post will cover it all, so get ready for tons of photos!