The Pokemon Company sparks backlash after “deleting” Unite trailer

Brent Koepp

[jwplayer dWIP3S6z]On July 9, The Pokemon Company abruptly deleted the Unite reveal trailer before re-uploading a new version. The move has sparked backlash from some players who speculate it was to hide the overwhelmingly negative dislike ratio. 

In June, Pokemon held a special Presents event where they revealed a team battle title called Unite. The MOBA-inspired game is free to start, and will launch on Switch and mobile devices. However, the announcement left many players disappointed as the community expected a remake of a mainline release.

The debut trailer on YouTube faced harsh criticism and became wildly disliked within hours. On July 9, the video was taken down before being quickly re-uploaded. Despite the company’s claim it was due to an “editing error,” the move has kicked off a new wave of backlash from some fans.

Pokemon Unite trailer reuploaded

Hours after Unite was revealed in June, the trailer was bombarded with dislikes from fans upset with the announcement. The reaction was so bad, the video received over 161k dislikes in less than 24 hours. On July 9, the reveal video was deleted before being reuploaded.

Pokemon fans flooded Unite’s YouTube trailer with dislikes.

Players noticed the second version of the video, such as Redditor ‘soccerman95’ who made a post on July 10 criticizing the move. “Regardless of your feelings on the reveal, this is a scummy tactic,” they said. Users on the forum speculated the video was re-uploaded to hide its original like/dislike ratio.

While some disliked the concept of the game, the topic creator argued that it was the way Nintendo hyped up the announcement that was the cause of the negative reaction. “Pokemon should own up to their horrible ways of hyping up such an announcement,” they wrote.

Over on the Pokemon subreddit, player’s accused the trailer was re-uploaded to hide its dislike ratio.

Joe Merrick, the webmaster of popular Pokemon site Serebii, tweeted out that the video was removed due to an editing error. “With this, they fixed an editing error where a Nintendo Switch was flipped but displayed the image as intended,” he said.

The official Pokemon YouTube channel in Singapore confirmed Merrick’s discovery, and made a statement in the comments of their re-uploaded trailer. “Due to an inaccuracy in the footage, we corrected the video and reuploaded it. Revised part: 1:00-1:02,” the new description read.

Despite the explanation, the move still sparked criticism from some fans who believe the reupload was to wipe the dislike ratio clean. Various players took to forums to express their frustrations over the incident.

Reddit user ‘T_Raycroft’ hit out at the company stating, “I’m f**king stunned. Someone at TPCI/Tencent is so soft that they literally try to throw the dislikes out the door. This is childish. Further fuel to the fire that is called “Reasons why I don’t want any part in Pokemon Unite,” they said.

Reddit users were critical of the trailer reupload.

While The Pokemon Company’s Singapore division has stated that it was a fix for an editing mistake, some in the community find it unusual that it would take them weeks to discover a mistake.

Regardless of what one thinks, it seems the negative reaction to Unite will not die down anytime soon. However, perhaps the MOBA-inspired game will get more love once its eventually released.