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Crest of Hope: Patamon's World - Tai's Digi-pinions - Digimon: A Pokémon copycat?

Patamon's World > Tai's Digi-pinions > Digimon: a Pokémon copycat?

Digimon: a Pokémon copycat?

by Jedi_Amara

Note: OK, OK! People have been bugging me about Digimon being released first! Well, I wrote this article before I knew that, and it's staying here, but there's no need to write any more letters about Pokémon coming out second in Japan. Also, Pokémon and Digimon both have their first copyright in 1995.

Is Digimon a Pokémon copycat?

When I first heard of Digimon, that's what I thought. Pokémon was the Anime that started me off, and I was absolutely addicted to it. Digimon? It was another "mon", and it was full of kids with cute little monster partners in a world of not-so-cute, not-so-little monsters. It sounded familiar. I didn't even bother to watch it. What was the point? Pokémon was so much better. (At the time, Pokémon was the only TV show I watched. Literally. Except for the news, of course.) That was when they had little motion-card things of Pokémon in chip packets. (I hated Pokémon before I started collecting those...)

Then, suddenly, I found that they weren't distributing Pokémon things anymore. It was Digimon. Resignedly, because my friends kept giving them to me, I started collecting the Digi-FX, as they were called. After a while, they stopped including Digi-FX and started on pop-out plastic Digimon things. Then they stopped Digimon altogether and started on DBZ (GROSS!), but it was too late. I was hooked.

So, is Digimon really that similar to Pokémon? Well, both are set in imaginary worlds, featuring kids with monster partners, but that's really the only thing that's the same. In Pokémon, the goal is to get all the badges and be the best trainer, whereas in Digimon the Digidestined are trying to save the world. Anyone can be a Pokémon trainer, but being a Digidestined is only for a select few. Both Digimon and Pokémon can evolve, but Digimon can devolve, while a Pokémon has to stay evolved. Don't forget that Pokémon have, at most, three evolution stages, while all Digimon have six. Then there's language: Pokémon can only talk Pokémon language (pika! pi pi pikachu!), while Digimon talk human.

So, the final verdict? Digimon is not a Pokémon copycat. If you want to see a Pokémon clone, watch Medabots. That has elements of Digimon too, but it's very funny. Go ahead, give it a go.


If anything Pokémon would be the copycat of Digimon. Digimon came out in the early 90s as "nano pet" like things that battled, while the earliest Pokémon things (in the U.S.) came with Pokémon Red and Blue in 1995 (when they started working on it anyway). So Pokémon copied Digimon.
from Yusuke
Actually, Digimon was out before Pokémon in Japan and America just got Pokémon second.
from Burning_Angemon
I agree with Yusuke. In Japan, Digimon came first. I'm not sure if there's a manga for Pokémon or not, but I know there is definitely one for Digimon. There's also the fact of the first movie that explains the "bombing" that was talked about a little in the series. That movie came before the pokemon series. Pokémon and Digimon share nothing in common, and if anything, Pokémon copied some of the factors of Digimon.
from Kimmer
Editor's Note: Yes, there are several volumes of Pokémon mangas.
I really didn't like Pokémon or Digimon when I was younger. I didn't even like talking about "Pokéman" and "Digi*beep*". Me and my friend were the only people who didn't like it so I started watching Poké*beep* which [words expressing extreme dislike] and then one day I started watching this cartoon which I watched for a month and didn't know the name. Then someone told me. Then I was like, "This show really kicks ass" and when I started watching it Digimon was almost ending the 2nd season and I learnt about everything that occurred in Digimon since the very first episode in season 1. From that point on, I had everything Digimon ever sold and I literally have two Digivices for every season and now I can beat anyone at any Digi-card tournament 24/7 and I know everything there is to know about Digimon from season 1 to season 5. If you didn't know, season 5 is the threequel to season 2. Oops, was that supposed to be a secret? Ciao! (means goodbye in Italian) 
from Avery
Editor's Note: This statement about season 5 is, at the moment, only a rumour.
Digimon rules. Pokémon sucks. End of story.
from AnimeTrekkie
I too thought that Digimon was just a copy of Pokémon. Little did I realize it was much better than Pokémon. I immediately fell in love with the show. Does anyone know for sure if season 4 is the prequel to season 1?
from Peter
Editor's Response: Season 4 is actually a new series, Frontier. I believe you're talking about season 5. At the moment, there is no official information on season 5 - there may not even be a fifth season. Rest assured that we will have information as soon as it is released.
I both love Pokemon and Digimon and I think that lots of kids do too. Both the Pokemon and Digimon movies are very sugoi. Yes, maybe Digimon was a little late but, hey, it's as popular as Pokemon! :D
from Pan
I will also have to say that when I first heard of Digimon I thought it was a Pokemon copy, but look at the facts, Digimon came out before Pokemon did, Digimon speak English (and Japanese :D) and Pokemon don't. However some people do believe that Digimon and Pokemon are just used as a market-war to gain ratings (ie. Toei Animation vs. TV Tokyo or FOX Kids vs. Cartoon Network). -- DARKside338
from DARKside338
I think that pokemon is a good show but i like digimon way better its just got more importance to me and definatly more meaning! i wish and hope and hope and wish desperately that the makers of digimon change their minds and make a 5th season i mean the ending just screams it ! but with pokemon its just not like that and also one of the best parts of pokemon isn't in the episode it's the ending with the pokemon jukebox and all that stuff! anything with digimon in it would beat a show like that.
from digifan08 :D
Digimon is NOT a Pokemon copycat! They are definitly differen't in many ways. For one thing the Digimon's names all end in mon,unlike the pokemon. Another thing is there are two seperate worlds in Digimon. Also you can have many pokemon in the pokemon show but you only get one digimon. When the pokemon evolve they can't change back unlike the Digimon. Also you catch pokemon and your main divice is a pokeball unlike a digivice the Digidestines use. I could go on!!
from Emily
Digimon is copyrighted 1995~1998. It first started out as a virtual pet (a.k.a tamagotchi) in Japan, the first virtual pet to battle in tamagotchi history. DigiMon was sent to America around 1997, the same year Pokemon was created. Pokemon was made into a show while Digimon was being made into a manga. (The manga started out with Tai and his digimon called Zeromaru the veedramon)Around the year 1998, Digimon was created into a T.V series in Japan, bringing in new characters such as Sora, Matt, Joe, Mimi, etc. Digimon failed to be a hit in Japan and in America, Poke fans felt that it was nothing but a copy of Pokemon. And the story goes on and on, but what's my point? Digimon came first so there's no way Digimon could have copied Pokemon.....unless.......*x files song*.
from ghina
Editor's Response: After checking my Pokémon files (ie. walking into my bedroom and picking up one of the boosters that are everywhere), I've confirmed my suspicion: Pokémon's first copyright is also 1995.
I also thought that pokemon was a root for digimon but in the middle of season 2 i learned pokemon was a Digi-clone.Also non roumurs says that season 5 will air with another set of digivices to boot:)!!!!!! mrmoney hat $$$$$$$$$:)
from digifreak
actualy in Japenese coping a idea for a cartoon, comic, book,etc. was showing respect to people befor them so ether way both could win. But Digimon did come into being first because when i was 5 or something I remember having the first digivice and my whole family fought with them forever i remember having a digimon that looked like an angemon and that it looked very much like a brick. Well peice out!
from Caleb Kitchen
I must admit i wasn't to thrilled about Digimon the first goround. To be honest I only wacthed it while i was passing the T.V. set while i was doing chores. Wasen't till about...(Thinks) Season 2 i began to enjoy it a little. I HATED Pokemon like i hated lairs. I still can't believe they thought of somthing like that.
from CaptGsavior
I have talked to programmers at many stations and at digimon art stations and i have found out there will be a fifth season although they say a sixth is unlikely;however i have no idea what the season has but i heard it will contain many flashbacks? or flashforwards? of season one and two.
from Willis
Editor's Response: Thanks for notifying PW. I'm unsure of the truth of this (after all, Digimon is made by Toei) but I will investigate ^^.
I totally got into digimon in 3rd grade with my friends when the first season was out. I loved the first season with Tai,Matt and the rest of the gang,but when Tai's sister and T.K grew up in season 2 I didn't quite like it the same,and then I didn't like the season that came after that when everyone got a digimon,I thought it was falling from the first season. But now I watch it again with the one wiht the red ruby where the kids spirit digivolve.
from Tai?
Well I have to say it was my best friend who intruduced me to Digimon! (AT that time I stopped liking Pokemon.) When I heard the name I thought it was exactly like Pokemon but then I saw it I was like, "Wow! I gotta start watching this more!" So I started watching it for 2 years then I stopped and after 3 longs years I'm back on! =^_^= kitty kitty! Later!
from Yami Kokoro
I don't think anyone really needs to go this far. I mean, flames ahoy, but I believe the creator of pokeymanseseses did have a few ideas for it a while before it came out, so it is possible that digimon came second. I doubt it matters one way or another, though, eh? They're separate properties. Most people have a down on both, holding that they're kids' shows, but as has been said, the release was later is the west and people use that excuse. meh.
from CG
Well when it was being advertised i watched monster rancher and didnt know that it was monster rancher and i thought it was digimon but the digimon came on and i was relieved i had not joined the series in the middle.
from Q-boy
My brother and I were searching through your site, ( finally, something useful!) when we read that Digimon was copyrighted in 1995, but when you think about it, Poke'mon was first made a game before a anime, so that means the developers would have to plan for the Poke'mon franchise in the late eightys due to the large scale of planning.
from Marshall
Editor's Response: Copyright automatically extends to intellectual property, so it's likely that the concepts came into being around the same time. ^_^

Response submission will reopen soon.

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