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Dogasu's Backpack | Rants | Happy Anniversary! (Year Twenty-Three)

By Dogasu
Posted January 31st, 2023


Dogasu's Backpack turns 23 years old today!

I've done so many of these anniversary write-ups over the years that it's getting to the point where I worry I'm just repeating myself, year after year after year. "Wow, look at everything I did these last twelve months!" "I can't wait for you to see what I have coming up for the site!" "Hey, who wants to hear my unsolicited predictions for the next year!?" It can be a bit repetitive, I know, but it's also kind of nice to stop every now and then and take the time to look back into the past and remind myself that hey, I do some pretty cool work every now and then.

So what did I do in 2022? Well, the episode comparisons I do between the Japanese and English versions of the Pocket Monsters animated series continue to be some of the more popular content on the site, and while I only ended up doing nine episodes in 2022 (the five Orange Islands episodes from "Navel Maneuvers" to "Tracey Gets Bugged," as well as the four episodes that make up Pokémon The Arceus Chronicles) I also debuted a new type of comparison, one between the pre-Porygon edits and post-Porygon edits of the show.

Last year was also when I started, in earnest, doing write-ups for Pokémon Radio Show! The Rocket-Dan's Secret Empire. When 2022 started I only had two write-ups on the site, but by the end of year that number more than quadrupled. Those radio show write-ups are a lot of work and tend to be not all that popular, traffic-wise, but I still love doing them because the show itself is just so much fun. I also love having a place on the Internet where you can learn all about this wacky Japanese radio show that is, unfortunately, seriously lacking as far as documentation goes.

I plan to continue to working on both episode comparisons and radio episode write-ups throughout the rest of 2023, working on an "Orange Islands comparison → Rocket radio write-up → Pokémon Shock comparison"  rotation schedule.

There were also a bunch of events that took place here in Japan that I was happy to cover for the site. Japan's borders were still closed to tourists for most of 2022 due to COVID and so I made extra sure to attend and then also document the Daniel Arsham "A Ripple in Time" Art Exhibit, The Pokémon Fossil Museum, and The 25th Anniversary Pokémon Film Festival events.

I also managed to translate a few voice actor interviews; my English translation of an Oricon interview with voice actor Mariya Ise (Eureka) and a Nico Nico News interview with Kensho Ono (Alan) both came out in 2022.

But the biggest thing my site did in 2022 was introduce its new section on the Pokémon Shock incident. The Pokémon Shock is one of those things that everyone knows about, sure, but outside a simple one paragraph summary most people know so little about it that they reduce it to a "Porygon did nothing wrong" meme and call it a day. My goal was to change that. I started work on the new section in July 2022 and treated it like a real project, using Excel to keep track of milestones and everything. It was an ungodly amount of work with countless hours spent transcribing, translating, double and triple and quadruple checking, researching, etc. But seeing everyone's reactions to the finished product was well worth it. I still have a lot more to do with the section in 2023 but the overwhelming majority of the heavy lifting is, thankfully, done.

And that's about it for 2022! Dogasu's Backpack's 22nd year on the Internet was a pretty significant one (maybe one of its biggest yet...?) and 2023 is sure to be a great one as well! Thank you everyone for continuing to visit this creaky old website and, as always, if you have any feedback or requests for future content then please let me know.

I always end these site anniversary write-ups with a set of predictions for the coming year. And so, without further ado, here's my completely half-baked, not-at-all serious predictions for what I think will happen with Pokémon in the year 2023

Video Games

  • I think we'll get word of a Pocket Monsters Scarlet & Violet DLC on Pokémon Day, with a Part 1 coming in Summer and Part 2 coming before the holiday 2023 season.
  • What will the new DLC-exclusive Paradox Pokémon be? I think we'll see "Iron Fangs" (based on Onvern), "Flowing Dragon" (based on Jijilong), and "Iron Sweets" (based on Mawhip); in other words, at least one new Paradox Pokémon for each of the three generations who currently do not have any.
  • I don't see us getting any sort of performance patches for Scarlet & Violet unless it's bundled in with a larger update. Like, maybe they'll throw in some bug fixes during a routine security-related patch, or maybe a few fixes when they add Pokémon Home compatibility, but I don't think we'll get any updates that exist solely to fix its many, many performance issues. The games have already sold a gajillion copies already; Game Freak isn't going to spend any more time / money / effort on these games than they absolutely have to.
  • We'll continue to see new Pokémon added to the games via raids, with all the starters coming out by the end of 2023.
  • The Pokémon Stadium games will come and go on the Switch Online service, but since we'll be forced to use Rental Pokémon most people probably won't play it for very long before running online to complain about how poorly those games have aged. Also, Rougela will be recolored purple and have its fainting animation altered because disappearing into a purple "void" would just look too awkward.
  • I do not think the Nintendo Switch is getting a Game Boy Virtual Console. A few years ago I would have said sure, throw a Game Boy emulator and the Gen 1 / Gen 2 Pokémon games up there, but let's be honest; the system is probably closer to the end of its lifespan than it is its beginning. I don't see Nintendo putting in the resources needed to port a bunch of ROMS over to their Switch when chances are very high they'll be announcing something new at some point within the next twelve months.
  • At the risk of repeating myself from last year: I think Pokémon Go will bring us Z-Moves at some point in 2023.

Pocket Monsters 2023
  • The current series, Pocket Monsters Mezase Pokémon Master, will end without really wrapping anything up. I've seen a lot of fans make a laundry list of items the series absolutely has to do before it's allowed to end -- Satoshi finds his dad, Satoshi defeats Sakaki and causes the Rocket-Dan organization as a whole to disband, Satoshi confesses his love to Kasumi/Serena/whoever, Satoshi is declared a Pokémon Master -- but I don't think any of that is going to happen. I think the show will end with Satoshi and Pikachu running across a field while a very open-ended narration, something like "Pocket Monsters, or 'Pokémon' for short. The adventures of Satoshi, a ten-year-old boy from Masara Town, and his partner Pikachu will continue. What kinds of new Pokémon will he encounter? His journey continues!!" closes out the final episode.
  • I would be absolutely shocked if Mezase Pokémon Master - 20th Anniversary Ballad vers. - isn't used in some capacity in the final episode of Pocket Monsters Mezase Pokémon Master.
  • The new protagonists in the Pocket Monsters 2023 series will have no relation to Satoshi.
  • In fact, I think the new series will be a fresh start of sorts, kind of like Best Wishes! was except without even Satoshi / the Rocket trio hanging around. I think the series will, at least for its first year or so, be a brand new adventure based solely in the Paldea Region, featuring only Pokémon that appear in Paldea.
  • I think Yuki Hayashi will be back to provide the background music for the new Pocket Monsters series.
  • I think it's likely we will see some kind of special standalone episode that'll air before the end of the year that will feature the "return of Satoshi and Pikachu." Maybe an episode that airs during Pocket Monsters 2023's regular timeslot, or maybe a web animation of some sort. I don't think the return will last more than an episode or two, if that.
  • I don't see there being a new movie in 2023 (they would've started promoting it by now if we were), but I think we will see a teaser for a new movie to come Summer 2024.
  • Both the English dub of the animated series and the Pokémon Red & Blue video games will celebrate their 25th anniversary in September of this year. I think we'll see TPCi get Jason Paige to come in and record Pokémon Theme ~ 25th Anniversary Version ~ and release an AMV for it, and maybe put all of Kanto on the Pokémon TV app, but beyond that I don't see TPCi doing much else to commemorate the event. TPCi made a big deal about the franchise as a whole celebrating its 25th anniversary back in 2021 and so it'd be a big awkward for them to be like "Hey guys, it's Pokémon's 25th anniversary...again!"
  • I don't see TPCi abandoning Netflix for TV airings or another streaming service (even though I really wish they would...) and so I think the Pocket Monsters 2023 dub will also go straight to Netflix in the U.S. If we're lucky we might see the English version debut before the video games' one year anniversary, maybe...?

  • I think we'll see a line of figures from the "old" series featuring characters like Satoshi, Kasumi, Takeshi, the Rocket trio, etc. as a kind of "last hurrah" for them.
  • I'm going to dare to dream and say that we'll finally, finally get a proper DVD / Blu-ray release of the original Pocket Monsters TV series here in Japan. None of this "random episodes on single DVDs" nonsense we've had for years; actual boxsets with most of the episodes in order. If there was ever a time for them to finally release the show then, well, now's the time to do it.
  • I think we'll get some sort of massive guide book to celebrate the end of Satoshi's journey in the animated series.

And that's about it! Until next time!



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