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Pokémon Company sues Chinese mobile devs for $72M over Pokémon ripoff

Pokémon takes on Pocket Monster Reissue

Detective Pikachu has a surprised expression on his face. Image: Nintendo/The Pokémon Company
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The Pokémon Company — the Japanese studio behind Nintendo’s Pokémon games — is seeking $72.5 million in damages with a copyright infringement lawsuit against multiple Chinese companies, according to the South China Morning Post.

The Pokémon Company is asking the Shenzhen Intermediate People’s Court to order the companies to stop development, distribution, operation, and promotion of Pocket Monster Reissue — also known as Koudaiyaogaai Fuke in Chinese — in addition to the financial damages.

Pocket Monster Reissue is currently still available in the Apple and Android app stores in China, with advertisements that use famous Pokémon characters, like Ash Ketchum and Pikachu. Fans have been comparing the mobile game to The Pokémon Company’s monster-hunting series for years, and it has continued to find success. The game has been in operation, without permission from Nintendo or The Pokémon Company, since 2015.

Since 2016, Pocket Monster Reissue has earned the companies behind it a good bit of cash, with one of the companies, Zhongnan Heavy Industries, reporting massive revenue increases in 2021.

The lawsuit is currently ongoing in the Shenzhen Intermediate People’s Court.

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