Pokémon in New Zealand

0140Kabuto.png This article contains old or outdated information, or has not been updated in a while. Please check the content of this article and update it as required.
Specifically, it needs info due to Chuang Yi going out of business, is NZ now receiving VIZ Media or Shogakukan Asia translations?.
Pokémon in New Zealand
Pokémon logo English.png
New Zealand Flag.png
Flag of New Zealand
Language English, Māori, NZ sign language
Continent Australasia
Original anime airdates
EP001 September 1998
AG001 May 2004
DP001 August 2007
BW001 September 2011
XY001 September 2015
SM001 December 4, 2017
JN001 December 26, 2020

The Pokémon franchise first reached New Zealand in late 1998 with the release of Pokémon Red and Blue Versions and the airing of the anime.

Pokémon games

All Pokémon games that have been released in the United States have also been released in New Zealand, with the exception of the Pokémon mini. The country of origin for each game tends to differ depending on retailer availability; some games are imported from the United States, but others are from the Australian release. The New Zealand release dates tend to be on or around the Australian release dates. An English language release of Learn with Pokémon: Typing Adventure was released in New Zealand, despite the title never being released in North America.

Games that are imported from the US are naturally inconsistent with New Zealand spelling rules. For example, spelling variations such as color and center are not changed to colour and centre for the New Zealand releases. Games sourced from Australia also have this problem, despite New Zealand English and Australian English being largely identical in terms of spelling rules.

Event Pokémon have been released in New Zealand sporadically. The recent introduction of Wi-Fi events has allowed New Zealand players access to many previously unavailable event Pokémon. Prior to this, very few event Pokémon were made available to New Zealand players, and when events at malls and other stores were held, many parts of the country were overlooked.

Pokémon anime

Pokémon videos and DVDs have been available for several years. In New Zealand, the anime is available on Netflix.


TV2's former logo

The English dub of the original series was first screened on TV2 (now known as TVNZ 2), a free-to-air television channel, in an early morning timeslot in 1998. It was shown on a daily basis.

In 2003, the anime returned to TV2; with Pokémon: Master Quest airing in an after-school time-slot, with episodes five times a week. Pokémon: Advanced followed in 2004, also five times a week in the same after-school time-slot. In 2005, Pokémon Chronicles was aired in an early morning time-slot on Sundays. This was followed by Pokémon: Advanced Challenge in the same weekly time-slot. Pokémon: Advanced Battle was then skipped with Pokémon: Battle Frontier aired in its place. After a brief period off the air, Pokémon: Diamond and Pearl was aired in the Sunday morning time-slot. In 2010, Pokémon: Battle Frontier was repeated on TV2 on weekday mornings with Pokémon: Diamond & Pearl repeats following it. Sinnoh League Victors began airing on weekday mornings in September 2011, while Pokémon: Black & White aired on Sunday mornings.

Pokémon the Series: XY began airing on Saturday mornings in September 2015, concluding in August 2016. Pokémon then switched to a weekday morning time-slot to air Pokémon the Series: XY Kalos Quest. Following this, Pokémon the Series: XYZ aired in the same time-slot, effectively making Pokémon the Series: XY the first series to air in its entirety on free-to-air television in New Zealand since the original series.

Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon began airing on December 4, 2017 at 7:45 AM on TVNZ 2. The first eight episodes of Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon—Ultra Adventures were made available for viewing through TVNZ's OnDemand service on March 1, 2018, with the remaining episodes gradually being added one-by-one from April of that year until January of the following year. The first 40 episodes of the season aired on the TVNZ 2 channel on weekday mornings from October 9, 2018 to December 5, 2019, while the remaining eight episodes previously available on demand were aired weekday afternoons from May 15 to 24, 2019. The first 15 episodes of Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon—Ultra Legends were aired weekday afternoons on the TVNZ 2 channel from May 27 to June 13, 2019, while the remaining 39 episodes were aired from February 26 to April 23, 2020.

Pokémon Journeys: The Series began airing in a Saturday morning timeslot from December 26, 2020.


In 2000, it moved to an afternoon time-slot on rival station TV3, which aired reruns of Ash's first journey through the Kanto region and showed the first screenings of Pokémon: Adventures in the Orange Islands. Broadcasting on TV3 ended with the final episode of Pokémon: Johto League Champions.


Pokémon the Series: XY Kalos Quest repeats aired from March 30, 2020 in a late morning time-slot on TVNZ Duke as part of a block of children's programming designed to keep children entertained during a national lockdown imposed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cartoon Network and Disney XD

Pokémon Diamond & Pearl: Battle Dimension and Pokémon Diamond & Pearl: Galactic Battles have yet to show on free-to-air television in New Zealand, but is shown on a daily basis on Cartoon Network, which is broadcast on Sky Network Television, a pay-per-view network. Cartoon Network has shown episodes from every series of the anime.

Disney XD began airing the series with Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon on July 2, 2018.

Pokémon movies

Mewtwo Strikes Back, The Power of One, and Spell of the Unown: Entei were screened in theaters; while Celebi: The Voice of the Forest and Pokémon Heroes: Latios & Latias were released straight to video. Jirachi: Wish Maker and Destiny Deoxys were not initially released in New Zealand, but they both aired on TV2 multiple times before finally being released on DVD on November 9, 2016, although the Destiny Deoxys DVD had previously been imported from the United Kingdom by The Warehouse in 2014. Lucario and the Mystery of Mew, Pokémon Ranger and the Temple of the Sea, The Rise of Darkrai, Giratina and the Sky Warrior, Arceus and the Jewel of Life, and Zoroark: Master of Illusions have all been released on DVD.

White—Victini and Zekrom/Black—Victini and Reshiram was released on DVD March 21, 2012, following a two-day limited release of White—Victini and Zekrom in theaters in February. With thanks to Hoyts, Bulbagarden was able to provide 10 free double passes to this screening. Kyurem VS. The Sword of Justice, Genesect and the Legend Awakened, Diancie and the Cocoon of Destruction, Hoopa and the Clash of Ages, Volcanion and the Mechanical Marvel, I Choose You!, and The Power of Us have also been released on DVD in New Zealand. Additionally, the English dub of Hoopa and the Clash of Ages made its world premiere at selected Hoyts cinemas in New Zealand on November 5, 2015, with the Australian premiere following two hours later.

Pokémon Origins was released on DVD in New Zealand by Beyond Entertainment on May 21, 2014.

Pokémon manga

Pokémon manga titles translated by Chuang Yi were previously available in New Zealand, distributed by Madman Entertainment. Pokémon manga is somewhat hard to find in New Zealand, but they can be obtained in specialist shops.

Pokémon Trading Card Game

The Pokémon Trading Card Game, although declining in popularity, is still being sold throughout New Zealand.

When first released, the game was very popular among New Zealand children. It was eventually banned in most schools, due to it being a "classroom distraction".[1] Conflict between students regarding Trading Cards as well as perceived gambling issues resulted in the cards being banned from some schools. Its popularity faded out as it was replaced by other popular crazes such as Yu-Gi-Oh! cards.

Pokémon merchandise

New Zealand received most of the same Pokémon merchandise that is available in the United States, such as plush toys which were released in major department chains and given away in some fast food restaurants. Due to its decline in popularity, merchandise can be difficult to find in New Zealand stores, but can still be purchased online.[2]

Pokémon DVDs and books (such as the Pokémon anime novelization series) have been widely available.

The 2011 McDonald's promotional Pokémon toys were available in New Zealand in August 2011.


The Pokémon franchise around the world
The Americas: BrazilCanadaLatin AmericaUnited States
Asia: Greater ChinaIndonesiaJapanMalaysiaPhilippinesSingaporeSouth AsiaSouth KoreaThailandVietnam
Europe: AlbaniaBelgiumBulgariaCroatiaCzech RepublicDenmarkFinlandFranceGermanyGreece
HungaryIcelandIrelandItalyLatviaLithuaniaNetherlandsNorth MacedoniaNorwayPoland
PortugalRomaniaRussiaSerbiaSlovakiaSpainSwedenUkraineUnited Kingdom
Middle East: Arab worldIsraelTurkey
Oceania: AustraliaNew Zealand

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