Twenty years ago today, on 12th September 1998, Pokémon Yellow launched in Japan.

Technically called 'Pokémon Yellow Version: Special Pikachu Edition', this game arrived on the Game Boy Color as an enhanced version of Pokémon Red and Green (known in the west as Pokémon Red and Blue). While many features of the game were identical to those that came before it, its characters and plot saw minor tweaks to coincide with the franchise's anime, notably featuring Pikachu as the protagonist's starter Pokémon to mirror the hugely popular Ash Ketchum.

It took over a year for the game to make it to North America, where it launched on 19th October 1999, and almost another year to reach Europe with a release date of 16th June 2000. By this point, the franchise of Pokémon had become a worldwide phenomenon, with video games, the TV show, trading cards, and much more dominating store shelves and school playgrounds.

The Pokémon anime's lead protagonist Ash with his Pikachu

Featuring other favourites from the anime, such as Team Rocket's Jessie, James, and Meowth, and enhanced designs to more accurately reflect the show's Nurse Joy and Officer Jenny, Pokémon Yellow went on to be a major success, reportedly selling over 14 million copies. The game has since been re-released on the Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console.

The game also acts as the reference point for the latest instalments to the Pokémon franchise, Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!. These games are set to act as a remake of Yellow, taking the original title's foundations and mixing it with the more recent smartphone hit, Pokémon GO.

Pikachu in the upcoming Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu!

Do you have any memories of playing Pokémon Yellow? Will you be popping the game into your Game Boy Color once more to celebrate its anniversary? Feel free to share your thoughts on the game below.