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Author: Aaron Bennett

Philosophical theory tends to be well hidden within the contexts of popular culture. In this chapter, I set out to show how Aristotle’s Friendship Ethics, as well as Free Market business strategies, can be associated with the success of the Pokémon franchise. To do this, I examine how Pokémon’s creator Satoshi Tajiri came up with the idea of the game and how certain ideas of friendship and the drive to succeed play important roles in the Pokémon brand. An examination of these aspects of the world of Pokémon reveals that the themes of friendship and the drive to succeed are formative reasons for its popularity. The question of what it means to be a Pokémon Master is addressed at the end of the chapter in a unique way, pointing to the universal need for human companionship and social interaction. My chapter suggests that Pokémon’s underlying purpose is to foster relationships and communication between people. Companionship is shown to be the motivating attraction of the game, an attraction that has left a deep impression on many of my generation. An example of this phenomenon closes the chapter and serves as a thank you to Pokémon for its beneficial influence on society.

In: Videogames Studies: Concepts, Cultures, and Communication