Laying iPokédex to rest


Hey guys.

I thought I’d quickly let you know what’s gone down with iPokédex over the last few weeks.

When I originally received the first email from the Pokémon Company counsel for the first time, they had mentioned that even though the majority of Pokémon fan productions aren’t licensed, there are a few that had made it through the process.
Not skipping a beat, despite the fact that they also said that they don’t have the resources to license many more, I asked the counsel if they could perhaps check with licensing and see if there was any potential for iPokédex to be officially licensed.

I didn’t really broadcast this information too much (I mainly just kept saying ‘man it would be nice IF it got licensed’ XD) as I didn’t want to come off as ‘counting my chickens before they hatched’, so to speak.

Anyway, after a little while, about 2 weeks ago, I received the following email from the counsel:

Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I chased up our licensing people. Right now unfortunately we’re not going to be putting an app on either of iTunes or Android. I can tell you though that they definitely appreciated your approach(*) and if we do decide to go into those spaces, you will definitely be considered to play a role in that.

Sorry I’m not bringing better news. Please do stay in touch though.

(*)This isn’t a brushoff. They specifically wanted me to make sure I mentioned it to you.

And sadly, that’s how the cookie crumbles folks.

As far as working out an official solution for getting permission to re-release iPokédex online, I was pretty much hedging all of my bets on that one.

So, on that note, I’m really sorry to say that there’s nothing furthur I can do from my end. iPokédex is going to have to remain offline… most likely permanently. 🙁

Since finding out the app had been pulled, I’ve been getting a lot of messages from people suggesting ‘hack’ solutions to get around this. Things like putting the IPA up on my site, releasing through Cydia, or even getting rid of the iOS component and rebuilding the app as a mobile web site that runs through Safari.
Unfortunately, I don’t think any of these solutions are actually viable. Aside from the fact that re-distributing the app outside of the App Store is a violation of my Apple Developer contract (also, the counsel specifically asked me not to re-upload it anywhere else), I should also point out that the Pokémon Company now knows who I am, and that I’ve been personally informed on their position with regards to this subject matter. They’ve been very kind to me up until this point, but if I start trying to cheat around their wishes like that, I’m sure all the good faith would go straight out the window. Sorry guys.

On a bit of the bright note, I am considering it a distinct honour and privilege that actual licensing people from the freaking Pokémon Company itself liked my approach. That’s really awesome in my books. 🙂

Either way, this is the end of the line for me at this point… at least, temporarily. I’m hoping the Pokémon Company might decide to build an app at some point (I think we’ve definitely demonstrated that it would be a rather popular thing), and I’d be very eager to donate all of my resources to that, should it ever come about. 🙂

I’m still thinking about what I’m going to do with the iPokédex code. When I received the notice, I was halfway through version 1.3, and there are a lot of cool new features that are sitting in there half-finished (All of the items, in-game sprites, and capture locations to name a few). For the sake of closure, I’m considering finishing them off. But just remember I can’t actually release that still. 😛

In any case, I’m still going to write blogs on all of the cool little iOS bits n’ bobs I learnt while building this thing. 🙂

Finally, if you’re still disappointed about the Pokémon Company’s decision here, there are a few things you can do to help out. 🙂

  • Firstly, there’s a petition out there to representing the users who loved having a mobile Pokédex app on their smartphones. Go sign it.
  • On a bit more of a direct note (if you’re up for some writing), contact the Pokémon Company directly and tell them that you are disappointed in their decision to shut down all of the fan-made apps.
    If the feedback I’ve heard is anything, they definitely take fan feedback seriously. Just remember, BE POLITE. They extended a very nice courtesy to me, and they deserve the same in return. The email address is feedback[AT]pokemon[DOT]com
Anyway, from this point on, I’ve got the design and protoype for my next app more-or-less down now, so I’m going to be focusing on that. This one’s going to be a paid one, so I plan to do all of my homework this time. XD