Well, here’s your “Bizarre News Story of the Week™”. In a clip posted to Twitter via the latest episode of the Kit and Krysta podcast, the ex-Nintendo employee received a question from one of their Patreon supporters if they had ever played a “Nuzlocke run” of Pokemon.
This prompted the pair to tell a story where they pitched an idea to The Pokémon Company to play a Nuzlocke race on an episode of “Nintendo Minute”. Apparently, not only was their proposal immediately shut down, but they reportedly came close to being fired, with The Pokémon Company stating that the Nuzlocke Challenge is “on the same level as a hack or ROM”.
Naturally, this bombshell may come as a shock to those familiar with the Nuzlocke Challenge. For the uninitiated, there is a self-imposed set of community rules that must be adhered to when playing Pokémon. The two basic rules include releasing any Pokémon that faints during battle, as it must be considered “dead”, and that the player must just catch the first Pokémon they come across within each area. There are a number of additional rules that most players also adhere to, and you can read about them all on the Nuzlocke Challenge Bulbapedia page.
Regardless of your familiarity with the Nuzlocke Challenge, our brief overview should make it clear that it is not on par with hacking or ROMs; it is simply a set of self-imposed limitations that take place within the core parameters of the game. In fact, Kit and Krysta were clearly shocked by the reaction of The Pokémon Company and highlighted its unpredictability regarding community suggestions.
Since the release of the clip, Serebii webmaster Joe Merrick stated that he had contacted The Pokémon Company regarding the claim, who confirmed that players are free to play Pokémon games in any way they see fit, as long as it stays within the confines of the game itself, saying “we have no problem with fans/creators playing the games with Nuzlocke rules”.
While there is no doubt that Kit and Krysta’s story is true, we suspect there may have been some miscommunication regarding the definition of hacks and ROMs and their relationship (or lack thereof) to the Nuzlocke Challenge. It’s possible that while The Pokémon Company has no problem with the Nuzlocke Challenge per se, it may not have been interested in the challenge being showcased via an official channel like the Nintendo Minute. Regardless, Kit and Krysta seem to have taken the controversy in stride, posting a hilarious tweet last night:
What do you think of Kit and Krysta’s claims? Are you a fan of the Nuzlocke Challenge? Let us know in the comments below.