Masaaki Hoshino

Masaaki Hoshino is a technical director at The Pokémon Company, formerly at Bandai Namco. Hoshino is the producer of Pokkén Tournament and the former producer of Pokémon UNITE.

Masaaki Hoshino


Hoshino's first Pokémon game was Pokémon Yellow, and he gradually became engrossed with the game's battle system. Hoshino joined Namco in 1997 and began working on the Soulcalibur franchise as a programmer, eventually becoming the producer of the series.[1] While at the company, he started a Pokémon Club that held internal tournaments every year.[2]

During this time, the manager of the Taiko no Tatsujin franchise approached Tsunekazu Ishihara about making a Pokémon-themed version of that game, but was rebuffed, as Ishihara wanted to collaborate with Tekken if he were to work with Bandai Namco.[3] Toward the end of 2013, Ishihara, recognizing Hoshino's enthusiasm for Pokémon, asked Hoshino if he would be willing to make the fighting game Pokkén Tournament.[4][5]

In April of 2019, Hoshino joined The Pokémon Company.[6] In July of 2019, TiMi Studio Group announced on Weibo that they were collaborating with The Pokémon Company.[7] This game would later be revealed as Pokémon UNITE, which Hoshino would produce.[8] On December 21, 2022, it was announced that Yuki Gabe was taking over the role of producer from Hoshino.[9]

Game credits


  • Hoshino's favorite video game character is Absol.[4] He has claimed to have had three full Boxes of Absol stored in Pokémon Bank.[2]
  • Hoshino's favorite fighter in Pokkén Tournament is Charizard and his favorite move to use in the game is Seismic Toss.[3][10]
  • Hoshino claims to have had over 100 Ditto as well as Abra with every Nature so he could raise competitive Pokémon on his 3DS.[2]
  • Hoshino has passed the Rules Expert Exam, the Japanese counterpart to the exam held by the Professor Program, and has won the Gym Leader Championships held in Ōimachi.[2]


  This article is part of Project Sidegames, a Bulbapedia project that aims to write comprehensive articles on the Pokémon Sidegames.