Nintendo Space World

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Nintendo Space World (Japanese: 任天堂スペースワールド Nintendo Space World), formerly known as Shoshinkai (Japanese: 初心会) until 1997, was an annual trade show held by Nintendo from 1989 to 2001. The show launched multiple different Nintendo consoles, and showed off upcoming games from various different series, including Pokémon.


1997 was the first year the event was called Space World, and it was held from November 21st to November 24th, 1997.

Pokémon Gold and Silver Space World '97 demo

Main article: Pokémon Gold and Silver Spaceworld '97 demo
Pokémon Gold demo title screen

The Pokémon Gold and Silver Space World '97 demo is an early build of the games Pokémon Gold and Silver that was shown at the event for the first three days. At the time, the final game was estimated to be about 80% complete and was set to be released for the original Game Boy—the Game Boy Color would not be announced until late March of the following year.[1][2] However, due to a variety of delays, including a complete overhaul to the game, it would not be released until late 1999.

Mew Distribution

Main article: List of Japanese event Pokémon distributions (Generation I) → Nintendo Space World '97 Mew

At the event, there was an advertised distribution for 100,000 Mew, eligible to players who submitted a postcard with an application ticket from the CoroCoro Comic or the official flyer. At this distribution, players connected their game cartridge to a special machine. While originally planning to be run until November 23, 1997, the distribution was later extended to the non-exhibition day November 24, 1997.

Pokémon Stadium (Japanese)

Main article: Pokémon Stadium (Japanese)

Originally announced as a 64DD title and scheduled for a June 1998 release,[3] it would later release exclusively in Japan in August 1998 as a regular N64 cartridge.

Pokémon Snap

Main article: Pokémon Snap

Also originally announced as a 64DD title, an early version of Pokémon Snap was shown off at the event. The UI appears much more crude, and some screenshots from the event show Ekans, which is not present in the final release. Other footage shows environments either substantially changed in the final, or not present at all.[4] Scheduled for release in Fall 1998,[5] it was eventually released in Japan in March 1999.

Hey You, Pikachu!

Main article: Hey You, Pikachu!

Originally scheduled for a release in early 1998,[6] Hey You, Pikachu! would release in Japan in December 1998.


Space World 1998 was skipped because of a lack of 64DD games to show, so the next event was instead held from August 27th to August 29th, 1999.

Pokémon Gold and Silver Space World '99 demo

Main article: Pokémon Gold and Silver Spaceworld '99 demo

A demo for Pokémon Gold and Silver was shown off at the event, taking up more space than any other event, complete with decorations that included large Poké Balls hanging from the ceiling. At the time, it was advertised as being 90% complete.[7]

Pokémon live action play

A live action play was performed at the event, featuring actors dressed in large pokémon suits as Pikachu, Togepi, Meowth, and Charmander. At least in part, the performance included dances performed to songs from the anime, such as Pokémon Ondo. There was also a skit performed with Pikachu and his friends evading Meowth's attempts to capture them, including Meowth attempting to catch them in a Poké Ball, which gets stuck to his paw. After the performance ended, audience members were handed special Pokémon music CDs.[8]

Mew distribution

Main article: List of Japanese event Pokémon distributions (Generation I) → Nintendo Space World '99 Mew
A banner promoting the Mew at Space World 1999

The event again featured a Mew distribution, this time limited to 50,000 applicants. As before, players were required to submit an application postcard to be able to receive the Mew.


Space World 2000 was held from August 24th to August 26th, 2000.

Meowth's Party tech demo

Main article: Meowth's Party
Nintendo Power screenshot of Meowth's Party

An interactive GameCube tech demo based on the Meowth's Party ending theme of the anime was shown at the event. Running live on the GameCube hardware, it contained substantial differences from the ending, most notably the absence of any of the 2D animated segments, and a showcase of advanced lighting effects. Staff at the event controlled the camera using a wireless controller.[9][10] It was developed by the same team that made Pokémon Stadium, and at the time it wasn't known if this demo was part of work being done on a Pokémon game for the GameCube.

Pokémon Puzzle Challenge

Main article: Pokémon Puzzle Challenge

Pokémon Puzzle Challenge was shown at the event alongside its release date. The game was fully completed, releasing only a month later in September 2000.[11] A demo was also available to play.

Pokémon Crystal

Main article: Pokémon Crystal
An early logo for Japanese Crystal (the word kashō (仮称) means "tentative title") shown at Space World 2000

Pokémon Crystal was shown off at the event, alongside it's release date scheduled for December 14th, 2000. Originally planned to release alongside the Mobile Game Boy Adapter,[12] the peripheral was delayed until late January 2001.

Pokémon Stadium 2

Main article: Pokémon Stadium 2

Pokémon Stadium 2 was shown off at the event, scheduled for release on December 14th, 2000.[13]

Pokémon live action play

Another live action performance was held during this event, and as last year, featured actors in large suits. This time, actors were dressed as Meowth, Pikachu, Snubbull, and Totodile.[14]

Pokémon Stadium 2 exhibition match

The event featured a live exhibition match in Pokémon Stadium 2,[15] featuring a ruleset that would later be used again for the Nintendo Cup 2000 tournaments that took place starting in November 2000.

Celebi distribution

Main article: List of Japanese event Pokémon distributions (Generation II) → Nintendo Space World 2000 Celebi

A Celebi distribution was held[16] at the event from August 25th until August 27th, extending to a non-exhibition day. The distribution was originally revealed in the July 2000 issue of CoroCoro Comic. To be eligible to receive a Celebi, players had to submit a postcard by July 31, 2000. From all the entrants, 100,000 were selected at random to receive Celebi. Those who were selected were given a Celebi gift ticket, which were sent two weeks before Nintendo Space World 2000. The gift ticket had to be taken to Nintendo Space World 2000 in order to obtain Celebi. In addition to this, Nintendo of America gave some gift tickets out to members of the press.


Celebi e-Reader Promo Card

The final Space World event was held from August 24th to August 26th, 2001. Pokémon's lack of presence at the event was noted by attendees at the time, with Shigeru Miyamoto commenting that it was due to their focus on "international software", and that Pokémon for the GameCube would be shown off at later events in the future.[17]

TCG Sample Set

Main article: Sample Set (TCG) → Nintendo Space World, August 2001

Members of the public were able to try out the upcoming e-Reader device, with a set of Pokémon cards that were hole punched and tethered to a mounted Game Boy Advance by a metal chain to prevent theft or loss.[18]

Celebi e-Reader Promo

Main article: Celebi (Wizards Promo 50) → Release information

A Celebi e-Reader card was given out to visitors at the event in the Nintendo Space World 2001 Official Guidebook. Scanning the card results in a short video of Celebi floating around, eating fruit off a tree.[19]


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