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Author Topic: Did anyone else think Digimon vs Pokemon was kind of dumb  (Read 452 times)
mahoroa
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« on: November 15, 2023 @836.01 »

I always found it bizarre that Digimon vs Pokemon was a thing.

I'm not much of a Pokemon fan but I did play a good chunk of the games (both main line and spinoff) and there's very little similarities between it and Digimon.

Most similarities I could find is that they're both monster raisers that involve evolution. That's about it.
The games are different, the monster designs are different, even the way the monsters are treated are different.
I even watched some of the Pokemon anime to see if it's any similar to the Digimon anime but they felt very different?

It's even wilder to see people call Digimon a ripoff when it started off as a Tamagotchi spinoff that was marketed to young boys.

The two series are extremely different in my eyes and I can't be the only one that thinks it's pointless to compare the two like they're the same franchise, right?

I should mention none of this is me saying one is better than the other. Comparing Pokemon and Digimon just never really made sense to me
« Last Edit: November 15, 2023 @837.48 by mahoroa » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2023 @848.62 »

It's even wilder to see people call Digimon a ripoff when it started off as a Tamagotchi spinoff that was marketed to young boys.

The two series are extremely different in my eyes and I can't be the only one that thinks it's pointless to compare the two like they're the same franchise, right?

This was so rampant in the late 90s/early 00s! So many kids at school thought similar that Digimon was some kind of ripoff because the dub aired a year later, but most people didn't have internet access then so there really wasn't any way to know.
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zawieja
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« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2023 @862.30 »

For me these were always rather separate things, just similar in naming convention. I love digimon anime and pokemon games and there is no connection for me between those, but well, I obviously know both of them well enough to make that distinction, while a lot of people know either one or another and jump to assumptions  :ha:
I guess these franchises were just unlucky to come out at a similar time.
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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2023 @879.39 »

I think you're giving the similarities far too little credit.

  • Both are video games with an anime spinoff, both of which released around the same time
  • Both revolve around children (specifically young boys) who partner up with a monster companions, and then battle with those monster companions
  • Both Pokemon and Digimon hatch from eggs
  • Some villains hold similarities - Giovanni and the Digimon Emperor have very similar M.O.s
  • Both change form and become stronger through a method called 'evolution'
  • The Agumon vs Charmander comparison is pretty easy, especially when Agumon is one of the poster children for the series, while the Charmander line is one of the most popular Pokemon lines of all time
  • The Pokedex vs the Digivice

Would I consider Digimon a "Pokemon ripoff"? No. That's an absurd claim. I don't think that's even possible - game development takes way too long for it to have been a ripoff. The first Pokemon and the first Digimon were released only around a year apart. But I also think that it's natural that the two are compared. They're both popular franchises, with multiple similar concepts. So long as the comparison is not being used to drag one of them (in which case, it's lame), then I see it as par for the course.
« Last Edit: November 15, 2023 @881.17 by Bede » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2023 @956.84 »

Id add that Digimon's status as a ripoff was also part of its appeal. I was very much a first-generation Pokemon enjoyer, so when Digimon came along it was clearly a bady trying to steal Pokemons thunder (For a 6 year old this was a serious threat)! But Digivice toys were also super cool and were totally a mini craze in our school. Using a digivice always felt sneaky and illegal because we weren't supposed to like it; and it was also kinda mysterious because I was never able to figure out what was happening in the tv show... Digimon felt like a rouge bad boy out to cause trouble in nice Pokemon land  :ok:
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mahoroa
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« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2023 @969.59 »

Id add that Digimon's status as a ripoff was also part of its appeal. I was very much a first-generation Pokemon enjoyer, so when Digimon came along it was clearly a bady trying to steal Pokemons thunder (For a 6 year old this was a serious threat)! But Digivice toys were also super cool and were totally a mini craze in our school. Using a digivice always felt sneaky and illegal because we weren't supposed to like it; and it was also kinda mysterious because I was never able to figure out what was happening in the tv show... Digimon felt like a rouge bad boy out to cause trouble in nice Pokemon land  :ok:

Honestly never thought about it like that! You have a point tho.

Kids love rebelling in some way so ig it being seen as a "ripoff" is seen as part of the appeal! Unfortunately in turn it leads to people jumping to conclusions about the franchise, but there also lots of passionate fans. Kind of a double edged sword ig
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mahoroa
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« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2023 @972.08 »

I think you're giving the similarities far too little credit.

  • Both are video games with an anime spinoff, both of which released around the same time
  • Both revolve around children (specifically young boys) who partner up with a monster companions, and then battle with those monster companions
  • Both Pokemon and Digimon hatch from eggs
  • Some villains hold similarities - Giovanni and the Digimon Emperor have very similar M.O.s
  • Both change form and become stronger through a method called 'evolution'
  • The Agumon vs Charmander comparison is pretty easy, especially when Agumon is one of the poster children for the series, while the Charmander line is one of the most popular Pokemon lines of all time
  • The Pokedex vs the Digivice
Those are also valid similarities to point out, and I'm not against making comparissons (I love comparing stuff I love), but a lot of those similarities feel like staples of the monster raising genre.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that outside Pokemon, there's not a lot of monster raising games that got popular in the West? So Pokemon was seen as more unique in the West.
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« Reply #7 on: November 15, 2023 @989.38 »

a lot of those similarities feel like staples of the monster raising genre.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that outside Pokemon, there's not a lot of monster raising games that got popular in the West? So Pokemon was seen as more unique in the West.

I definitely agree with that! I haven't seen lots of monster-raising games that I've been able to play. Digimon and Pokemon are the only two that I know of, off the top of my head. But I've seen LOTS of them that I've NOT been able to play, because of there being no English translation.

This makes me wonder: is the Digimon vs Pokemon comparison a specifically Western phenomenon? Since monster catchers are much more available in Japan, I can't imagine the same comparison is being made there. Or, at the very least, not nearly as often. (Certainly not calling Digimon a "knockoff".)

If the similarities between the two are par for the course with this genre, perhaps my previous statement would be like the equivalent of saying, "This movie is about a M/F couple, has a kiss in the rain, AND their parents don't approve!" as points to saying that a romance movie is a "The Notebook" ripoff. It's so interesting how different media climates can drastically effect how a certain piece of art is viewed!
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« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2023 @38.61 »

Id add that Digimon's status as a ripoff was also part of its appeal. I was very much a first-generation Pokemon enjoyer, so when Digimon came along it was clearly a bady trying to steal Pokemons thunder (For a 6 year old this was a serious threat)!

I never got into Digimon as heavily as Pokemon (I've never finisheded a season) but it was kind of sacrilege on the playground that Digimon came around when the Pokemon anime was getting too formulaic for me so it was shiny and new...
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mahoroa
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« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2023 @110.78 »

This makes me wonder: is the Digimon vs Pokemon comparison a specifically Western phenomenon? Since monster catchers are much more available in Japan, I can't imagine the same comparison is being made there. Or, at the very least, not nearly as often. (Certainly not calling Digimon a "knockoff".)

Oh it def is. For some reason when bringing Digimon over to the West the marketing team tried to make it seem like a competitor to Pokemon. This rivalry doesn't really exist in Japan from what I could see.

Def an odd marketing choice imo. Like I know why they did it, Pokemania was hugeeeee in the 90s but I feel like that attempt at a rivalry is what caused Digimon to not be as popular in the West and why there isn't much Digimon stuff over here  :sad:
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BlazingCobaltX
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« Reply #10 on: November 16, 2023 @735.09 »

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that outside Pokemon, there's not a lot of monster raising games that got popular in the West? So Pokemon was seen as more unique in the West.

This is definitely part of it. In the West, the monster catching genre is Pokémon. It has no substantial competition and any new monster catching IP that comes to the West is quickly deemed a Pokémon rip-off. Western-produced IPs seem to kinda roll with this, see for instance Temtem that didn't really attempt to hide that it was a clone.

Maybe it's the same thing that happened to Super Sentai, where only one version of that (the Power Rangers) got popular in the West. The wider franchise never made it out of Japan. Or the fact that people would call all consoles a Nintendo until they were corrected. Starting to see a pattern here.  :eyes:

Back to Pokémon vs. Digimon. I was definitely one of those kids that took a side quickly and stuck with it, but it didn't seem like there was much competition over it to begin with. People quickly deemed it a clone and moved on with their day. Pokémon vs. Yu-Gi-Oh! on the other hand...

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« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2023 @958.75 »

Jokes on them, I like both  :tongue:

Tho when I was a kid, I thought all "anime" was drawn by the same person. Yes, in my little toddler head, Pokemon and Digimon were made by the same artist. Why? Well, they needed different monsters to tell different stories!
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« Reply #12 on: November 22, 2023 @168.69 »

I always found it bizarre that Digimon vs Pokemon was a thing.

Personally, one of the reasons I think we're in one of the crappy timelines is that both Digimon and Pokemon became popular while Megami Tensei remained niche.
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