Anime has remained my favorite genre from when I was a kid up to date. I always loved discovering new anime shows and among my top favorite was Pokémon and Digmond🥰. Now if you are a 90s baby who loved anime as much as I did, then you are probably familiar with the debate of Pokémon vs Digmond.
The debate has been ongoing for years, with fans from either side determined to prove one was better than the other. Personally, I like both and felt that they offered a different experience while watching🤷. It is also quite impressive that even after more than two decades the two shows have managed to hold their own in the industry.
Since I have a lot of experience watching both anime as a kid and even now, I thought of finally offering an objective answer to the ongoing debate. For that, I will be objectively analyzing the different aspects of both anime and comparing them to see which one is better. So, if you’ve also been stuck between deciding whether Pokémon is better than Digmond or vice versa, keep reading to get your answer🙂.
Pokémon vs. Digimon – How They Compare
Before we delve into the details of how the two series differentiate, below is a summarized table of their side-by-side comparison:
What are the differences between Pokémon and Digimon?
Both Pokémon and Digimon were introduced to the gaming industry around the same time, although Pokémon came out first. Because of that and the fact that they are both centered around capturing and bonding with creatures, some fans (Pokémon fans) seem to be convinced that Digimon was a rip-off of Pokémon.
Whether that’s true or not is a whole other debate. But despite some of their glaring similarities, the two series are actually pretty different. If examined closely you will find that they each have their pros and cons when compared. The following is how they differentiate:
Despite people thinking that Pokémon and Digimon are the same, their concepts are pretty different. On the one hand, Pokémon anime is mainly about Ash Ketchum, a young boy who goes on a journey to become a Pokémon Master. With the help of his friends, he travels to different regions of a fictional world called Pokémon to capture different Pocket monsters, collect gym badges and defeat the villain teams.
On the other hand, Digimon anime follows a group of kids who travel to a parallel world known as the Digital World. There they befriend digital monsters and use their help to battle evil forces to protect the universe. I feel the element of Digimon’s story is closer to reality 😊. Some of the things that happen in the show could happen in the real world, may in a decade or more.
In terms of the tone, Pokémon is more lighthearted and focused on adventure and bonding with Pokémon as opposed to battles. Unlike Pokémon, Digimon isn’t as censored to be children friendly. It also includes slightly more violence. I like that Digimon’s storyline is more complex and features more themes that you can relate to in the real world regardless of your age. Themes like anxiety, divorce, and so on. In Pokémon, the main themes are friendship and loyalty 😑.
Therefore, I would say, the Digimon storyline is better. Not only is it more complex, but it is also more relatable given the themes it covers that appeal even to adults and not just young kids.
As I mentioned above, both anime are creature centered. The difference is, in Pokémon, it involves Pocket monsters called Pokémon, and Digimon includes digital creatures called Digimon. Do you see where the ripping-off started? Just kidding🙃.
But both sets of creatures can evolve (or digivolve in Digimon’s terms), albeit differently. In Pokémon when one evolves, it never goes back to its original state. In Digimon however, the creatures can evolve during battle and go back to their baby forms after. I found this pretty cool, since Digimon unlike Pokémon, don’t have to lose their earlier personality or bond with their tamers. Unlike when Charmander evolved to Charmeleon and stopped listening to Ash, remember that funny scene?😂
In terms of design, I feel both Pokémon and Digimon, have a fair share of adorable designs and failed attempts. However, if it were about creativity, I’d say Pokémon put a bit more effort even when it came to naming them. Some Digimon names are right on the nose, with the suffix -mon added at the end, but at least Pokémon tried to create funny puns around the names.
I do, however, like the fact that Digimon can talk to humans, unlike in Pokémon. Aside from Meowth, most of the Pokémon just make sounds based on their names . While it is cute and heartwarming that Ash and the gang can understand the mons regardless, it would still be cooler if they actually talked. But at least in Pokémon, the trainers are allowed to bond with multiple Pokémon. In Digimon, each digital creature shares a bond with only one Digi-destined partner.
As for variety, I would say Digimon wins in terms of numbers. Currently, there are a total of 1400 Digimon known, whereas there are only slightly over 1000 Pokémon. But, in terms of variation, Pokémon takes the crown 👑. There are more types of Pokémon that I can count within each type, from Fire-types to Ground-types.
Overall, I would say, Pokémon has better creatures. Although Digimon can talk, I like the fact that I can bond with multiple Pokémon and I also prefer the creativity behind Pokémon designs over Digimon.
Continuity is an important aspect to consider when comparing anime. Both Pokémon and Digimon have managed to stay in the running for so long thanks to it. However, I feel that Digimon has a better sense of continuity compared to Pokémon.
Whereas Pokémon has maintained the same protagonist for almost all seasons, and movies, Digimon has kept things fresh by introducing new characters. As such, compared to Pokémon, I never felt the show was repetitive. There was always something new to look forward to in every season.
So, in terms of continuity, the points go to Digimon. Because of the change in characters, the story seems to be ever-evolving and interesting. Although in terms of releases and movies, I’d say Pokémon has better consistency, which has probably helped it stay in the running as well.
If Pokémon is known it’s largely thanks to its exemplary marketing and consistency in its releases. Because of that, the franchise as a whole has gained a really huge following and not to mention global recognition. When it comes to its anime, I feel like it is easily accessible on several platforms like Netflix, Hulu, Prime, and its very own Pokémon TV among many others.
On the other hand, Digimon is also a very popular show and has managed to maintain that over the years. However, it doesn’t share the same recognition as Pokémon does on a global level. I believe this has something to do with how accessible the show is. Sure, you can stream it on several platforms like Hulu and Prime, but not as many platforms compared to Pokémon.
As such, it is clear that Pokémon is more accessible on more platforms compared to Digimon. This fact, plus, its heavy marketing is one of the main reasons the show has remained on top.
Final Verdict: So, Which is better? – Pokémon or Digimon?
All things considered, Pokémon comes out on top. The storyline of the show may be repetitive but it does have a wider recognition and is more easily accessible to the fans. Even so, Digimon’s storyline is more complex and appeals to an older audience.
Ultimately it depends on what your preference is. If you prefer adventure and fantasy, then Pokémon is a great choice. But if you are more inclined to technology and futuristic themes then you’ll enjoy watching Digimon.
Which is more popular Pokémon or Digimon?
On a global level, Pokémon has more recognition compared to Digimon, although it is safe to safe both of them have a huge fan following.
Who came first between Digimon and Pokémon?
Pokémon came first. The anime first aired on TV Tokyo in 1997. Digimon came a few years later with the first episode airing on Fuji TV in 1999
Which one is easier to play Pokémon and Digimon?
Both anime are adaptations of video games, and each game presents a challenge of its own. It ultimately depends on your skill level as a player and how frequently you play the games.
Which one should you play first Pokémon and Digimon?
The order doesn’t matter. Both games are different and will offer a different gameplay experience.
To say I am a die-hard fan is the least way to describe my love for Pokémon. I have grown up playing and studying everything there is to know about the game and anything related to it, giving me more than 18 years of as a player. I also have more than 10 years of experience in the gaming industry, creating content on different technology and gaming products. Now, with my experience, I want to share my passion and knowledge of Pokémon with all the other enthusiasts out there to help them learn and grow as they continue to explore this world filled with endless adventure and possibilities. You can read more about me on the about us page.