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Japanese man apprehended for illicitly distributing modified versions of Scarlet and Violet Pokémon

A Japanese man has been apprehended for illicitly distributing modified content from Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, allegedly amassing a substantial fortune in yen within a remarkably short span of time.

According to NHK News and Automaton (thanks, VGC), this person was offering rare Pokémon for sale on a website that specializes in video game items and characters. These Pokémon were being sold for as much as 13,000 yen (about $85 / £70) each. He also offered custom-made orders and bundle deals, like a savvy salesperson offering ‘6 Pokémon for just $30’. According to reports, this event occurred from December 2022 to March 2023.

The investigation is still ongoing, with the individual reportedly admitting to the charges. He claims that he was merely trying to make a living as a justification. Regrettably for him, the act of altering save files and sharing the data is considered unlawful in Japan according to the ‘Unfair Competition Prevention Act’.

Those who break this rule may be subject to a maximum prison sentence of five years, hefty fines exceeding 5 million yen, or a combination of both penalties. Obsessed with these virtual beings… Well, well, well.

Scarlet and Violet made their debut on the Switch in November 2022, so the man’s actions occurred during a time when the games were likely at the height of their popularity. The games received a mixed reception, primarily due to various performance issues.

The Pokémon Company continues to provide ongoing support for Scarlet and Violet, including tera raids and various events. However, they are now shifting their focus towards Pokémon Legends: Z-A, the highly anticipated sequel to the critically acclaimed 2022 game Pokémon Legends: Arceus. The release date hasn’t been confirmed yet, but it’s likely to be sometime in 2025.

About Jacob Chambers

Old-school gamer with a cheeky tongue that gets me in trouble. When I'm not playing games, I'm writing about them, preferably in the vicinity of a fridge! Oh, and if you're a Justin Bieber fan, I'm afraid we can't be friends!

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