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Nintendo just changed Pikachu's name and people are absolutely livid


Nintendo just changed Pikachu's name and people are absolutely livid
03 June 2016


Yep, the electric yellow mouse, the unofficial mascot of the bothersomely successful Pokémon franchise, is getting a name change for the latest titles, Sun and Moon

Fear not - Pokémon No. 25 will still be called 'Pikachu' in old Blighty and the English-speaking nations.

The statically charged rotund rascal is switching its name in Hong Kong, and fans are bloody miffed about the hole debacle. 

The issue stems from a shift in the language choice of the new games. Formerly, Hong Kong players were able to catch 'em all in Cantonese Chinese - in which Pikachu was called 比卡超 (Bei-kaa-chyu). The new titles will see the game released with a unilateral translation of Mandarin Chinese, which terms the chubby electro rat "Pikaqiu".

While that might not look like a big deal, for Cantonese-speakers, the pronunciation of 'Pei-kaa-jau' is very different to 'Bei-kaa-chyu' - to the extent that it sparked protests on the streets of Hong Kong. According to QZ, on 30 May dozens (okay, so it's not a massive deal) of Pokémon fans marched on the Japanese Consulate in Central, singing the Cantonese Pokémon theme tune demanding that Hong Kong receive a Cantonese release of the new games Sun and Moon

Sure, it all sounds like a bit of a joke, but for citizens of Hong Kong it's a slap in the face from Nintendo (part owners of the franchise) for not respecting their local heritage and culture. 

Nintendo's Hong Kong branch apparently responded to fans with a plea that they continue to read the name with a Cantonese pronunciation. Here's how the protesters reacted...


[Via: Quartz]