If you’ve always wanted a Pokémon anime focused on the Pokemon TCG rather than the Pokémon world, good news! Pokémon: Path to the Peak will follow a young Pokémon card collector as she and her “partner Pokémon Oddish” enter the world of competitive TCGs.
After moving to a new school, Eva is initially dejected – until the members of the school Pokémon club welcome her in, and she starts studying how to play Pokémon cards well enough to compete in a championship. You’ll be able to watch the first episode of Eva’s adventures on YouTube from August 11.
The Pokémon company revealed the “short animated series” during its Pokémon Presents announcements on Tuesday. Those lucky enough to attend the Pokémon 2023 World Championship will be able to see a premier at Pacifico Yokohama national convention hall.
The short trailer snippet below suggests that this will be a high-school adventure, with classic Pokémon battles used to represent Eva’s deck-shuffling quest. We have to assume the anime will focus on Eva’s personal growth, and not the more tedious parts of becoming a great trainer – like tracking down the most powerful Pokémon cards you can afford for your deck.
It’s amazing it’s taken this long to get an anime about the Pokémon TCG. The Yu-Gi -Oh! card game would not exist in the form it does today if it weren’t for the success of the anime. Yugi Motou’s adventures might give you some very weird ideas about how to play Yu-Gi-Oh!, but it is all about the TCG, not ancient Egypt.
Path to the Peak looks like it’s intended to make the competitive Pokémon scene inviting to new players. As with any TCG, there can be barriers for some players to participate in the wider community, particularly organised play, and knowing that it even exists is often the first one. For a look at some of the more complex barriers, check out this article on a group making the Pokémon TCG more accessible for minority gender fans.