by Harry Frank

Is your child “obsessed” with Pokémon and you don’t know where to start? Blue Ox Games is here to get you up to speed. Pokémon is not new—it has been around for over 24 years, expanding and changing its offerings to keep up with the modern kid.  

Although originally designed with children in mind, Pokémon has evolved into a pastime which many parents enjoy with their kids. It is simple to learn and a great way to connect with your kids.

If you are feeling lost and overwhelmed by your kiddo’s sudden fascination with this magical world and its native creatures, here are four simple steps to help you get started.

Step 1 – Breathe!

Pokémon rocks on so many levels—you should be excited that your child loves them! The company is very family friendly; all official Pokémon Professors have gone through a background check. The Pokémon-related offerings available to your child range include the (highly collectible) cards involved in the Pokémon game, T.V. show, digital and video games including the PokémonGO app, and so much more. The diversity of Pokémon offerings allows your child to be constantly learning and discovering more about the Pokémon world. 

Step 2 – Immerse!

Pokémon offers so much it is almost silly to not take advantage of what they provide. The Pokémon YouTube channel ( has tons of free videos featuring all aspects of the Pokémon fandom: animation, video games, PokémonGo, and of course the Trading Card Game or TCG. Sealed TCG products contain codes for the Pokémon Trading Card Game Online, providing more bang for your buck. 

Pokémon Regional competitions are mini-conventions dedicated to the Pokémon universe and are a great family trip. When your child explores the depth of their interests they are more likely to stay engaged and you are less likely to feel like is simply a fad.

Step 3 – Learn!

When playing the TCG, players, or “trainers,” must make strategic decisions and manage their resources to win the battle. Trainers learn the value of sportsmanship, but also work on their core math and reading skills (yep—it’s incognito education, but don’t tell the kids that!). Trainers will often spend time “researching” deck ideas and Pokémon history which develops useful skills they will use later in life.

Step 4 – Play!

The Play! Pokémon network is “designed for Pokémon players to find casual and competitive opportunities to play each other.” Pokémon Leagues can be found at libraries, schools, and of course – the friendly local game store, Blue Ox Games. 

Organized play helps in children’s social development as they meet other people with similar interests from a variety of backgrounds in a safe and fun environment. While easy to learn, the game takes a lifetime to master, and parents often become as engaged as their children!

Are you and your family ready to become Pokémon trainers?

Vocabulary for Beginners
If your Pokémon enthused kid seemingly developed a new set of vocabulary overnight, here are some key terms to familiarize yourself with. Don’t hesitate to ask your child to explain something to you – chances are, they will be thrilled that you interested Pokémon, too. BATTLE: when two Pokémon fight; may be between a trainer’s Pokémon and a wild Pokémon, or between two Pokémon whose trainers are directing their actions COMBAT POWER: a measure of how strong a Pokémon is in battle EGGS: Pokémon hatch from eggs! These can be found or purchased in games EVOLUTION: the process of a Pokémon leveling up into a more powerful version of itself Poké BALL: an item used to catch Pokémon TRAINER: someone who collects Pokémon and explores the Pokémon world

Blue Ox Games is your home for everything geeky and awesome including Pokémon, Magic, Yu-Gi-Oh!, board games, comics, graphic novels, manga, and more.
Pokémon League meets every Saturday from 11am to 2pm at their store located
at 2713 East 10th in Greenville, NC.
For more information call them at 252.695.6442 or visit their Facebook page

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