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Pokemon Devs Touched By #ThankYouGameFreak Tweets

It's no secret that Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield are controversial titles. Despite the fact that the games haven't been released yet, many fans anticipate the newest mainline Pokemon titles to be the worst yet. But amidst the leaks, bad press, and controversy, longtime Pokemon fans still found a way to say thank you to the devs at Game Freak for all their work over the years. How, you ask? By sharing their precious Pokemon memories through the hashtag #ThankYouGameFreak

Over the weekend, the hashtag trended on Twitter, as fans took the opportunity to say that Pokemon had shaped their childhood, or that the games got them through a difficult time. The goal of this wholesome hashtag was to reach the developers at Game Freak, who have recently come under fire regarding issues related to Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield.

And it seems campaign successfully touched the hearts of the folks behind the new games. Lead producer Junichi Masuda tweeted, "Thank you, everyone!" today after a weekend long stream of love for Pokemon. The series' game director, Shigeru Ohmori, was also shocked to see thousands of tweets proclaiming the importance of Pokemon. He tweeted, "#ThankYouGameFreak is trending all over the world?! I'm happy! 5 days left until Sword/Shield releases. I'm looking forward to playing with everyone!" 

This sentiment is in stark contrast to the #BringBackNationalDex hashtag that has gained a following over the past few months. This hashtag was used to protest Game Freak's decision to exclude the National PokeDex, which means roughly half of the world's Pokemon will be excluded from the new games. Game Freak explained that this was because animating all 800-some Pokemon would be an undue burden on its staff, but fans have called this decision lazy, and believe that it has ruined the new games. 

Will we be saying #ThankYouGameFreak when Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield release on Nov. 15? Be sure to check back for a roundup of what the reviews had to say.