Pokémon's Creatures, Inc. in Hot Water Over Visit to Controversial Yasukuni Shrine
posted on by Lynzee Loveridge
Tokyo is home to many beautiful shrines but none hold the same political controversy as the The Imperial Shrine of Yasukuni in the Chiyoda district. The Meiji-era shrine is dedicated to Japan's war dead, which includes the soldiers killed during Japan's imperial campaigns in China and Korea during the Shōwa period. Visitors can see inscribed names of the war dead, including 1,068 convicted war criminals, whose souls are believed to reside within the shrine.
The atrocities committed by Imperial Japanese forces are still an open wound for many in neighboring Asian countries and visits to the shrine by current Japanese diplomats and politicians have sparked protests. The shrine has also been a target of both arson and bombing attacks in the last 10 years.
Knowing the controversy surrounding the Yasukuni Shrine, Chinese and Korean fans of Pokémon were shocked to see the staff of video game developer Creatures, Inc. make a New Year's visit and publicly Tweet about the trip. The tweets were originally shared on January 7 and are now deleted. Sora News 24 translated the messages before Creatures, Inc. removed them.
Creatures is starting its first work of the year today (happy emoji) We visited Yasukuni (Torii gate emoji) Shrine ^_^ The managers and chiefs have their hearts set on writing their wishes on wooden boards (sunset over mountain emojis).
The Creatures, Inc. headquarters is located in close proximity to the Yasukuni Shrine. While it's possible the staff were attempting to make a quick New Year shrine visit, the controversy surrounding the location is well-known. Many Pokémon fans responded to the original tweet incensed at the staff's choice.
"@Creatures_inc, I think you need to apologize about your Yasukuni Shrine visit. It's fine to make a shrine visit as a company, but why did you have to go and post it on Twitter and draw backlash from Chinese and Koreans? You've caused trouble for Nintendo, GAME FREAK, and Pokémon."
"What the hell was the point of going to the war crime shrine? I'm never going to buy anything Pokémon again. "
“As a fan of Pokémon since childhood, I'm really disappointed about your recent tweet at Yasukuni Shrine. It seems like you've deleted the problematic tweet, but please take care to never let anything sad like this happen again.”
“I bet you just went there because it's near your headquarters, and I would understand it if you were a small domestic company without international ties. But you know, you're doing international business with a lot of people and partners who will feel uncomfortable, so you really shouldn't do something like this. If this is what you want to do then you should retire from the international market.”
Creatures, Inc. hasn't issued a follow-up statement since deleting its original tweet.