After 25 Years, the Pokemon Anime Series Is Saying Goodbye to Ash and Pikachu

After 25 years, the Pokemon anime series is changing its formula by saying goodbye to Ash and Pikachu. The new Pokemon series is scheduled to launch in 2023, after Pokemon Ultimate Journeys: The Series ends, there will be two new main characters named Riko and Roy. The new show will also see Paldea’s three starter Pokemon, Sprigatito, Fuecoco and Quaxly, joining the duo on their journey.

Ash and Pikachu’s departure makes sense, as the pair finally reached the pinnacle of the Pokemon world earlier this year during the World Coronation Series Masters Eight Tournament. After narrowly being recognized as the best Pokemon trainer (nobody has ever been) in several regional conference tournaments, Ash finally hit his target and became the Champion Pokemon after he defeats old rivals and new challengers across the globe.

His story will wrap up in the next 13 episodes of Pokemon Ultimate Journeys, and in some special episodes will “give a glimpse of what the future might hold” for Ash and Pikachu according to Nintendo. In the trailer above, you can see some cameos from classic Pokemon and the legendary Pokemon trainer’s longtime friends. The Pokemon series first debuted in 1997 in Japan–1998 in the US–and has run almost non-stop since then, with over 1,300 episodes that have aired to date.

Meet Riko and Roy, the new faces of the Pokemon TV series.
Meet Riko and Roy, the new faces of the Pokemon TV series.

Traditionally a new installment is produced to tie in with each new main series of games, and based on the cover art above, it seems likely that the Riko and Roy-starred sequel will be set in the Paldea region of Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. In other Pokemon news, Pokemon Go’s winter holiday event is back and will run until December 23, offering exclusive items and new Pokemon to catch.

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