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Media & Entertainment

Tencent and Pokemon maker team up for new games

Chinese mobile developer deepens ties with Nintendo to expand portfolio

The Tencent-Pokemon Co. partnership may involve a new Pokemon game for the Chinese market, potentially on the Nintendo Switch.   © Reuters

GUANGZHOU -- Tencent Holdings, China's largest game company, will partner with a Nintendo affiliate behind the Pokemon franchise to develop new games, strengthening its relationship with an industry titan as stricter regulations make the Chinese market tougher to navigate.

Japan's Pokemon Co. will team with Tencent unit Timi Studio Group, which developed the smash hit mobile game Honor of Kings.

The announcement Monday included no details about game content or launch dates. But given Tencent's plans to sell the Nintendo Switch in China, a game for that console could be in the cards. Tencent and Nintendo announced the Switch arrangement in April, though no release date has been provided.

Pokemon Co. announced in February the next pair of major releases in the namesake series. Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield are scheduled to come out for the Switch on Nov. 15.

Tencent's strengths lie in mobile and personal computer games, and it possesses little experience with consoles. But Chinese authorities have cracked down on online games, citing concerns about their impact on young people.

Analysts see the tie-up with Nintendo, a top player in consoles for decades, as an effort by Tencent to expand its business into an area that may be less politically tricky.

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