According to Tekken series lead man Katsuhiro Harada, originally, after the offer to collaborate he approached Pokémon Company head, Tsunekazu Ishihara, with a different idea, but Ishihara already had his mind set from the start. “At first, I offered a collaboration with a different title, but when my messenger returned [from Pokémon Company], he said ‘Mr. Ishihara wants to collaborate with Tekken.’ Not only that, but [Mr. Ishihara] had already settled on a title — the entire office was dumbfounded.” Harada recalled in an interview with Weekly Famitsu. Said Ishihara, “I figured that if we’re going to make this, I wanted to team up with some place that had the best technical skills, so I was glad we were able to ask a development team of such high pedigree.”
One of Harada’s personal requests to Ishihara was that they be allowed to use non-fighting type Pokémon. “There are a lot of different types of Pokémon.” Harada explained. “For example, not that this means it’s going to be in the game, but if a Pokémon like Magikarp showed up, the player would wonder, ‘what kind attacks does it have?’ As long as we’re going to make this game, I wanted it to have that sort of surprise and expectations for the player.”
In order get the project rolling, Harada quickly searched for any knowledgeable Pokémon fans in his staff. As it turns out, Soulcalibur series producer Masaaki Hoshino was a massive Pokémon fan and quickly accepted the offer to helm the project. According to Hoshino, the game will have a wider area of play than your standard fighting game. “Pokémon have a lot of unique attacks, so I wanted to not be bound by the idea of range and have the gameplay be enjoyable at both close quarters and from a distance.” Hoshino noted.
As people familiar with the recent Pokémon games will note, towards the end of the trailer, Lucario seems to undergo a mega evolution into Mega Lucario. Hoshino quickly answered fan theories stating that, “Yes. There is a mega evolution element in the game.” While he clarified that not every mega evolution would be in the game, Hoshino noted that they would be including mega evolutions that fit the game’s style.
Pokkén Tournamentis currently scheduled to hit arcades in Japan in 2015. According to the team, the game is still at about 30 per cent of development. In terms of how soon we can expect a location test, Harada said, “For now, we want to focus on development in 2014. Please look forward to something in 2015.”