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Pokemon CEO Says He “Didn’t See It [Switch] Selling” And Believes Pokemon Will Be “Driving Factors” For Future Sales

Japanese publication Famitsu has published a candid interview with Pokemon CEO and president Tsunekazu Ishihara. The interview touches on a number of things including Ishihara’s initial belief that the Nintendo Switch wouldn’t sell to how much fun he’s been having with the popular platform. Ishihara believes that Pokemon: Let’s Go Eevee and Pokemon: Let’s Go Pikachu will only boost sales of the already sought after system.

“I don’t know if this has the ability to persuade the people who said a year ago that the Nintendo Switch wouldn’t sell [laughter], but up until that point a machine that integrated both handheld functionality and a home console was unheard of, so to be honest it was hard to know how it would sell. I didn’t see it selling. However, the overwhelming fun of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild made it popular. I think that had a big impact.”

“Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Super Mario Odyssey as well as other titles also had great timing and is helping widespread adoption. On top of that there are games like Nintendo Labo that include elements you don’t normally see in games, so it’s the ideal environment for a platform. I think this is a great opportunity for us to introduce new games and bring new experiences that will earn even more fans.”

“Exactly. However, the reason that we can release a title at this point in time is that we already had begun development at the time that the Nintendo Switch launched. That’s the point where thoughts like ‘maybe the hardware won’t sell?’ changed to a feeling of ‘our game will give the platform traction’. In a way, our second title this time around will be one of the driving factors behind that.”



  1. I’m surprised because you’d think they’d love a system like the Switch seeing how it’s portable

    1. It is possible he thought it wouldn’t sell due to the price being much higher than the Nintendo 3DS. If he did think that, I don’t know why due to Playstation 4’s selling like no tomorrow.

    1. EXACTLY SO WE HAVE A INDUSTRY TOTALLY OUT OF TOUCH WITYH EVERYTHING “”GAME”” we have them forcing us to aim with sticks not seeing switch comming forcing outdated playstion fan mechanics on us after thoase mechanics were left in the past by wii etc

      the industry is still based aroundf the ps1 bizniz model you couldnt make that up WHOS RUNNING THE INDUSTRY ARGENTINAS WORLD CUP MANAGER

  2. You know, considering how badly specific aspects of Pokemon need improvement, suddenly I feel we’ve reached the source of the problem, the CEO is out-of-touch with what consumers want.

  3. Why is Ishihara lying? Yoshi was obviously planned for November. You saw the sales figures and decided to whip up Pokemon Go in 5 minutes and Nintendo agreed to delay Yoshi because Pokemon would sell more.

    There was literally no other reason for Yoshi to move like that. I’ve been pretty forgiving on Let’s Go until now but don’t try and tell people these games didn’t take longer than 6 months to create.

  4. They chose portability over better performance and therefore get terrible third party support. They lost me as a consumer. For what Id use the switch for its not worth more than $200 and here its $449.

  5. you mean all those 30 plus year olds that should grow up and let actual kids play it instead of fully grown adults gamers today are a bit messed up 6yo kids playing a game for 18yos (call of duty) giving them insane profanity is just disgusting
    then we have the 30 plus year old who play a game for kids.

  6. IF YOU DIDNT SEE SWITCH COMMING then stand down as pomemon ceo how could anyone in that position be taht wrong,,is commonsesne actually very very rare sense

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