When you think of Pocket Monster cards, you probably don't think misty-eyed family memories. Look at these three cards and you just might.
In this card, you can see Tepig, one of the starter Pokemon in Pokemon Black and White. Surrounding Tepig is a mother, father, and their son, who is holding the Pocket Monster.
The card first appeared on 2ch this past summer, when it was released in Japan in the EX Battle Boost expansion cards for Black and White Pokemon trading cards. That same deck was released in early November in the West as Legendary Treasures.
The in-deck story continues in the card for Pignite, which is Tepig's evolved form. In the card, the boy is older, and he now has a kid sister who embraces Pignite.
And finally, the tableau culminates in the Pignite's evolved Emboar form. On the card, the parents are now older — they're grandparents! Their son is married and has a child of his own. His sister is also grown up in the final family portrait in this narrative arc.
These particular cards once again surfaced on Twitter last week, getting retweeted well thousands of times. Twitter user Yoroisan included a photo of all three cards and wrote "泣いた" (naita) or "I cried" in Japanese.
The portraits are incredibly relevant for the real world, too. Kids that have grown up on Pokemon will have families of their own. And, most likely, their kids will grow up on the game as well. Now, if only there were real Pocket Monsters for us to mark the milestones in our lives...