As my son sits and watches Anpanman, signifying I have lost the battle, I cannot help but think about the rising popularity of Yo-Kai Watch amongst the kids and if Pokémon is on the way out. When X & Y released last year I picked it up to see if the series still worked for me. I couldn't stay focused on it, but I couldn't help but wonder what my son's first Pokémon game would be like. X & Y released a full eighteen years after my first experience with the series, more than half of my lifetime ago. The idea that it would last a few more years did not seem ridiculous. Then again, Yo-Kai Watch could be the fad that everyone thought Pokémon was.
All of these thoughts came from listening to some of my students chat during lunch. A group were trying to play shiritori limited to Yo-Kai Watch characters. Every other turn someone would go "Umm... Ugh. Can't think of one. Can we just use Pokémon too?" One kid who was adamant that thy only use Yo-Kai Watch characters would veto it instantly. Pokémon were not to be used. The game took some time as each turn they struggled to name another character. Not a fair comparison as 718 different Pokémon have been created over the years. They were sure trying, though.
Back when I played Yu-Gi-Oh! every week there was a father and his two kids who would play in the tournament. The father sat back and watched his kids. He'd talk with other players there and learn stuff so he could help them. Sometimes before the tournament he'd be play testing one of their decks so he could help them understand it better. I always contrast this to one dinner I had in a restaurant where a child at a nearby table was trying to explain his cards to his mother who clearly gave zero fucks.
It doesn't matter to me if it is Pokémon, YuGiOh! or Yo-Kai Watch - as long as my son and I will be able to enjoy some game together, I'll be happy to share the hobby. Hopefully it will be something that I can genuinely get myself into instead of having to fake the giving of fucks. Nor is that a skill I am looking to improve. Then again, the key will be to not try to force him into something just because I like it.
Let's just hope this Anpanman phase ends soon.