We’ve covered an extensive amount of the backlash surrounding Pokemon Sword & Shield. A small and very vocal group has been screaming bloody murder. Most of their complaints come down to things like the reduced Pokedex and the alleged use of last-gen sprites.
While most of these complaints were understandable, things really got crazy recently. People started freaking out about a change that has been confirmed for months. Now the hate train has even steamrolled right over one of the biggest names in the Pokemon community: Serebii.
If you’re not in the loop, Serebii.net is one of the best resources out there for Pokemon information. It covers everything from Pokemon databases to move lists and is a great source for any confirmed news. Recently, however, the hate has taken target at Serebii’s webmaster, Joe Merrick.
For the past few months, Merrick has received criticism for only publishing news to Serebii.net once it has been confirmed. He also had a generally more balanced view on the changes coming to Sword & Shield, even the ones he does like. The more rabid part of the fanbase obviously doesn’t take particularly well to that.
The issue came to a head when he sent a message to GameFreak apologizing for the behavior of the fanbase. Many took this as Joe thinking he could speak for them, and it resulted in some vulgar comments. There have even been some alleged death threats, though if they exist they’re not out in the open.
Luckily, it seems like people are willing to stand by Merrick, as #IStandWithSerebii is trending in the U.S. and UK. The hashtag is being used to show an outpouring of support for the creator, with many thanking him for years of service to the Pokemon community.
Many tweets also lamented at the toxic state that the fanbase has fallen into over the past few months. It appears that the attack on a service that has been bringing Pokemon news to the world for over a decade was akin to the fanbase eating itself alive.
If you’re an upset fan, it might be time to consider stepping back from everything. It’s a mistake to assume that people saying the fanbase has gone toxic invalidates criticism. Whether they agree or not, most people can understand the problems which some have with the games.
Joe Merrick has been an important figure in the community for a long time. If he wants to apologize to GameFreak for the actions of the fanbase he’s part of, he is perfectly entitled to do so. Apologizing and defending some of the changes doesn’t make him a corporate shill.
Corporations are not out there throwing money at people to talk good about their games, most of the time anyway. If someone disagrees with your concerns, they probably just have a different perspective than you. Calm the hell down. If the entire #dexit movement actually didn’t buy the game, it would hurt sales and GameFreak and The Pokemon Company would take notice.
But no. It’s much better to go on Twitter and yell at people and send death threats to the developers. That’ll teach them! Keep it up. I’m sure they’ll be bringing back the National Dex and remove level caps any day now.
Last modified: November 12, 2019 10:09 PM UTC