Don’t bother catching them all, just get these ones.
Junichi Masuda has been involved with Pokemon since the beginning – from composing some of its most famous music, to designing the creatures or, these days, taking on the role of game director for the entirety of Pokemon Sun and Moon.
But – like all parents – even though he has to pretend to show everyone equal love, he has his favourites. What follows are the Pokemon that have nestled closest to the heart of the man that made them:
Pokedex says: “It has mystical powers but doesn’t recall that it has used them. That is why it always looks puzzled.”
Masuda says: “I think that ducks are really cool, and I had Psyduck on my business card for a while, so I really like that design.”
Trivia: Psyduck is one of only six Pokemon to appear in every single regional Pokedex.
Pokedex says: “When Pichu plays with others, it may short out electricity with another Pichu, creating a shower of sparks. In that event, this Pokémon will begin crying, startled by the flash of sparks.”
Masuda says: “I think it’s just really cute, and sometimes I don’t even evolve it into Pikachu because it’s so cute!”
Trivia: Pichu was the first ever Pokemon to be given out via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection in the West.
Pokedex says: “Inside its body is a place where it keeps a small flame. Hug it! It will be as warm as a hot-water bottle.”
Masuda says: “We wanted to design a Pokemon with a chick-based design, and I like designing birds, so this kind of design we came up with is cool.”
Trivia: Torchic’s Japanese name, Achamo, breaks down to mean “baby fighting chicken”.
Pokedex says: “This Pokémon brings victory. It is said that Trainers with Victini always win, regardless of the type of encounter.”
Masuda says: “We had the idea that a Pokemon can lead you to victory, and I think Victini really gives you this really cool feeling that it could get you to victory from anywhere.”
Trivia: With an Unova Pokedex number of 000, Victini is the only Pokemon to be listed before the starters in any Pokemon game.
Pokedex says: “It wraps its ribbonlike feelers around the arm of its beloved Trainer and walks with him or her.”
Masuda says: “When designing fairy-type Pokemon for the first time, Sylveon was one that came from that. When test-playing the games themselves, I spent a lot of time using Sylveon, so I formed a real attachment.”
Trivia: Sylveon was designed by longtime Pokemon artist, Atsuko Nishida, who also created the original design for Pikachu.
Pokedex says: “Unlike other Exeggutor, the Alolan Exeggutor has a fourth head—on its tail! This fourth head controls the tail independently and can take on opponents to the rear that can’t be reached by the main heads’ attacks.”
Masuda says: “I think it’s really fun – it’s trying to be the very tallest thing there is, and I think it’s just a really fun Pokemon to go on an adventure with.”
Trivia: Alolan Exeggutor was so popular on the day of its first reveal that it became a meme, with over 300,000 tweets using its Japanese name alone.
Joe Skrebels is IGN’s UK News Editor, and his favourite is Garbador. He didn’t tell Masuda that. Follow him on Twitter.