Update [Wed 21st Sep, 2022 10:26 BST]: In a statement mimicking its response to Joe Merrick, The Pokémon Company has doubled down on its stance regarding Nuzlocke runs, stating to Eurogamer that "The Pokémon Company International does not have any issues with fans or creators playing the video games with Nuzlocke rules".
As mentioned in the original article, The Pokémon Company's statement perhaps indicates that it had more of an issue promoting the Nuzlocke Challenge in an official capacity, rather than taking umbrage with the Nuzlocke Challenge as a concept.
So if you're looking to stream a Nucklocke run in the future, then worry not; the Pokémon ninjas won't be visiting your home any time soon!
Original Article [Mon 19th Sep, 2022 10:30 BST]:
Well then, here's your 'Bizarre News Story of the Week™'. In a clip posted on Twitter via the latest episode of the Kit and Krysta podcast, the ex-Nintendo employees received a question from one of their Patreon supporters on whether they had ever played a 'Nuzlocke run' of Pokémon.
This prompted the pair to recount a story in which they pitched an idea to The Pokémon Company to play a Nuzlocke run on an episode of 'Nintendo Minute'. Apparently, their suggestion was not only promptly shut down, but they allegedly came close to being fired, with The Pokémon Company stating that the Nuzlocke Challenge is "on the same level as a hack or ROM".
Naturally, this bombshell might come as a bit of a shock to those familiar with the Nuzlocke Challenge. For the uninitiated, it is a self-imposed set of community rules that must be abided by when playing Pokémon. The two basic rules include releasing any Pokémon that faints during battle, as it must be considered "dead", and that the player must only catch the first Pokémon they come across within each area. There are a plethora of additional rules that most players also abide by, and you can read about them all on the Nuzlocke Challenge Bulbapedia page.
Regardless of your familiarity with the Nuzlocke Challenge, our brief overview should make it clear that it's not on the same level as hacking or ROMs; it is simply a set of self-imposed restrictions that take place within the core parameters of the game. Indeed, Kit and Krysta were clearly shocked by the reaction from The Pokémon Company and highlighted its unpredictability in regards to community suggestions.
Since the release of the clip, Serebii webmaster Joe Merrick stated that he had contacted The Pokémon Company regarding the claim, who confirmed that players are free to play Pokémon games in whichever way they see fit, so long as it remains within the confines of the game itself, stating “we do not have any issues with fans/creators playing the games with Nuzlocke rules”.
While there's no doubt that Kit and Krysta's story is true, we suspect that there may have been some miscommunication regarding the definition of hacks and ROMs and their relation (or lack thereof) to the Nuzlocke Challenge. It's possible that while The Pokémon Company has no issue with the Nuzlocke Challenge in itself, it perhaps wasn't keen on the challenge being showcased via an official channel such as Nintendo Minute. Regardless, Kit and Krysta appear to have taken the controversy in their stride, posting an amusing tweet yesterday evening:
What do you make of Kit and Krysta's claims? Are you a fan of the Nuzlocke Challenge? Let us know in the comments below.