Kotaku is no stranger to discussing fashion, and so I am proud to uphold this storied tradition. Gamers do not know how to dress themselves, this much is well known. Standard press conference fare, even from executives, is a graphic tee and blazer combo that leaves much to be desired. Sure, it’s an extra marketing opportunity for your merch that looks bad, but that doesn’t justify the complete lack of thought put toward incorporating the bad merch into your overall aesthetic. The same cannot be said for the Pokémon Company.
In today’s Pokémon Direct, Takato Utsunomiya, COO of the Pokémon Company, wore the most impeccable outfit I’ve ever seen grace a YouTube stream about video games. We’ll start, of course, with the shirt — the centrepiece of his look. The Pokemon Company began a partnership with Original Stitch a few years ago to produce custom-ordered Pokemon shirts, and the results have been…tremendous. My brain is very sick.
As such, I immediately recognised the Kyogre pattern drifting at the edge of my subconscious since I first laid eyes upon it. Gamers, it’s got everything. A strong, neutral base colour that allows it to easily work with most pairs of pants, the textured pattern that makes the shirt almost feel like it’s made of old paper, and, of course, the subtle yet striking, Kyogre spread throughout.
Subtle and striking actually describes most of the Pokémon shirts, which is why I still have yet to actually buy one. They’re all just too good to decide on one. Each manages to accurately capture the vibe of a given Pokemon in a shirt that just looks good on its own, divorced from the branded content it’s based on. This is gamer fashion done right, evoking the feel of a game without actually trying to emulate its look.
For a worse example, take these Cyberpunk 2077 sneakers that I fucking hate. The attempt to emulate the geometric armour plating some cyberpunk aesthetics go for just makes the shoes look incredibly corny. This corniness is amplified by the word “PUNK” written across the side of the shoe in neon pink. If you have to write “PUNK” on it, it probably isn’t doing a great job of actually looking punk. I get irrationally angry when I look at these shoes. Attempting to bring the aesthetic standards of a virtual world into meatspace usually ends up like this, flat, messy, and trying way too hard.
Branded shirt aside, the rest of Utsunomiya’s outfit is flawless. The blue of his jacket perfectly matches the tones of the Kyogre shirt. His watch is a great accent piece, and the “M” at its centre really brings the whole thing together. And those glasses. Gamers, this is how you wear a pair of glasses. The round look perfectly suits his cool nerd vibes, and the actual size of the frames highlights his incredible cheekbones. Toss in his gorgeous grey hair? And you have arguably the best-dressed man in all of video games.
His fit is so good that I, a devout lesbian, have spent over 500 words describing how good he looks. I don’t think I have 500 words to describe the look of any other man on the planet, let alone a dreaded gamer.
If any other executives are reading this, please, just steal this man’s lookbook. You will make a much better impression at all future press conferences and livestreams. And gamers? If you really need to define your personal aesthetic around the media you consume, make sure you do it like this.