The Pokémon Company recently conducted an internal interview with Game Freak director Junichi Masuda and Pokémon battle director Shigeki Morimoto, during which the two developers shared their thoughts on various aspects of Pokémon X and Pokémon Y, the last pair of games released in the series.


One of the topics discussed was the question of balancing the various Pokémon, and Masuda mentions a couple that he feels might be a little too prominent in the competitive Pokémon scene.


“At a recent Pokémon tournament in Japan, Kangaskhan and Garchomp were used quite a lot, so I wouldn’t deny that those seem a bit too prominent,” Masuda says. “But for now, it appears to me that the players seem to have a good grip on strategies to counter one another, so I think we’ve achieved an adequate sense of balance.”


Speaking with regard to the competitive Pokémon community, both Morimoto and Masuda feel that competitive Japanese players are still stronger than their western counterparts.


“I don’t know the definitive reason, but I think that one reason might be that there’s a closer community among players in Japan and it’s easier to communicate about Pokémon,” Masuda shares. “It’s possible to exchange information and opinions through various social networks, which leads to even more opportunities to practice battling.”


Masuda adds that he is seeing players communicate more about the games with one another overseas as well, so he’s curious to see if the 2014 World Championships Pokémon tournament will demonstrate any changes in the gap between Japanese and international players.

Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and a contributing writer at He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.

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