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Pokemon celebrates its 20th anniversary with a New 3DS bundle and a Super Bowl ad

In 1996 Nintendo released a pair of games about catching and battling monsters, and two decades later it's now one of the biggest entertainment franchises around. To mark the 20th anniversary of Pokemon this year, the Pokemon Company has announced a number of upcoming promotions, starting with a Super Bowl ad that will air during the game on February 7th. While we don't know what the ad will look like, it appears it won't be promoting a specific title; instead the Pokemon Company says it "will encourage fans to ‘train on.'"

Pokemon 20th anniversary graphic

Then, on February 27th, a special edition New Nintendo 3DS bundle will launch, which will include two changeable faceplates featuring art from the first two games in the series, Pokemon Red and Blue. The handheld will also feature digital versions of both of those games pre-installed (they'll also be sold separately in the 3DS e-shop) as well as an exclusive Pokemon menu theme. This is only the second version of the smaller, customizable New Nintendo 3DS to be released in North America, following an Animal Crossing version last summer. (Japan, meanwhile, will receive a quartet of colored, transparent 2DS Pokemon bundles on the 27th as well.)

There are a handful of other promotions slated for the year as well, including the re-release of some hard-to-find Pokemon amiibo (Charizard, Jigglypuff, Greninja, and Lucario), a new expansion for the Pokemon trading card game which launches at the end of February, and the digital release of 12 different Pokemon animated movies on iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon. What isn't scheduled to launch this year, however, is a main new release in the series, but that doesn't mean there isn't a lot of Pokemon on the way. In addition to the digital re-issue of the original Game Boy games, 2016 will also see the release of the arcade fighter Pokken Tournament on Wii U and the augmented reality game Pokemon Go on iOS and Android.


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