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How Pokemon ‘Bridged Changed My Life September 26, 2017

Posted by Maniac in Game News.
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Last week saw the release of Pokémon Gold and Pokémon Silver on the 3DS Virtual Console and Pokkén Tournament on the Nintendo Switch. What better time to talk about the thing that turned me back into a Pokémon fan, Pokémon Bridged?

Back in the year 2012 a friend of mine took me to the inaugural Quinni-Con at the Quinnipiac University York Hill Campus. My friend was an otaku and a long time lover of anime, and because of that, I’m going to refer to him as Otacon for the rest of this article.  While he had showed me lots of different anime over the years I wasn’t as well versed in the subject as he was.   Quinni-Con was just the right convention at the right time. By that year, most conventions focused on fandom were expensive and required travel.  Meanwhile, the Quinni-Con was completely free of charge and it was happening very close to my home, so you can be sure I was very excited to attend it.


Quinni-Con was a small convention taking up the student center of a smaller university, but two of the featured guests at the convention for that year were OneKids and Nowacking from the web series Pokémon ‘Bridged.  At that point in my life, I was completely unfamiliar with that series but like many people who grew up in the 90s, I was familiar with Pokémon.  I told my friend Otacon we should check out the panel.

While Otacon was an enormous anime fan, he wasn’t familiar with Pokémon. However, he agreed to check out the panel with me after I gave him a brief explanation about the games.  At the time, I was not familiar with any of the developments on Pokémon since the release of Pokémon Gold and Pokémon Silver for the Game Boy Color, but I certainly was familiar with the original Pokémon games, and had seen the first two seasons of the animated series back when it first aired.  I hoped my outdated knowledge would be enough to get through the panel.

When we arrived in the panel room I met two of the minds behind the group who would eventually call themselves the Elite3, Mike “OneKids” Heicht and Jessi “Nowacking” Nowack.  That’s when I watched Pokémon ‘Bridged for the first time.  Here’s one of the episodes we watched.

They had taken the original episodes of Pokémon: The Animated Series and put their own twist on it!  This was a series that was familiar to me, yet presented in a whole new way. The jokes were funny, the editing was sharp, but the best part about it was the whole series was clearly made by people with a true love of the source material.  This was the perfect series for a person like me to watch. It was not only hilarious, it reminded me of everything I had loved about Pokémon.  Otacon and I had a blast at the panel, and it was great getting to know two of the people behind it.

After the con ended, Otacon and I went on YouTube and watched every single episode of Pokémon ‘Bridged the team had released up to that point. We could not stop laughing for the rest of the night.  Here’s one of my favorites:

Pokémon ‘Bridged was funny, but it meant a lot more than that to me. Watching Pokémon ‘Bridged reignited an enormous passion within me for the Pokémon franchise that I don’t think Nintendo could have accomplished on its own. I hadn’t played any of the games or watched any of the movies in nearly twenty years, in fact I hadn’t owned a new Nintendo handheld since the original Game Boy launched.  However, Nintendo was making great strides with their recently released Nintendo 3DS.  The 3DS could not only play all 3DS games, it could also play the enormous library of DS titles. At the time, the recent Pokémon games had been released on the DS, making the 3DS look like a great deal to me. When the 3DS XL launched in August 2012, I picked one up on day one.  I also ended up scouting every website and store for new copies of the Pokémon games I had missed out on. Throughout the rest of the year I researched the nearly twenty years of Pokémon history that I had missed, while trying to acquire all the new games that I could. Thankfully new copies of the GEN5 games weren’t that difficult to find, and I would eventually end up picking up all of them.  When Nintendo officially announced Pokémon X and Pokémon Y in 2013, I bought the GEN6 games on their release date.

One year after the inaugural Quinni-Con, Quinni-Con 2013 was gearing up to be an even bigger event, and this time I was ready for it, I even got a hat.  The Pokémon ‘Bridged group was returning and I couldn’t wait to see them again.  They were even nice enough to take this picture with me.

I would catch the team who would later call themselves the Elite3 a few more times over the years. In 2014 I met xJerry64x, the voice of Brock in Pokémon ‘Bridged. A lot changed that third year.  Mike actually recognized me on the con’s show floor, and we all ended up taking a bit before their panel!  I even got the chance to introduce them to my girlfriend at ConnectiCon a few years later. They could not be a nicer group.

In the years since I first started watching the series, the Elite3 have greatly expanded their content. They now have a Pateron, and do regular gaming streams on Twitch.  I’m also looking forward to seeing Nowacking continue her playthrough of Pokémon Snap.

Meanwhile, because of their work, I finally got back into the Pokémon universe, and enjoyed every second of each game I played through.  Without Pokémon ‘Bridged to remind me how much I loved this franchise, I don’t think I would have ever considered picking up a Nintendo handheld again.  I wish everyone at the Elite3 only the best!

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