Japan Shogi Association Raises Funds with Exclusive Pikachu Plush

A huge part of Pokemon is the battling aspect, with trainers being able to battle across card games, video games, and even through mobile games. But now, Pokemon’s iconic yellow mascot Pikachu is taking on a new challenge, specifically through the world of shogi, a game often referred to as “Japanese chess”, in an all-new collaborative crowdfunding campaign!

This special shogi Pikachu plushie is exclusively available as a reward for backers of a crowdfunding campaign by the Japan Shogi Association, bringing the traditional Japanese game to the world of gaming and pop culture. The campaign aims to raise funds for the construction of a new shogi headquarters in Tokyo, which will also serve as an event venue and a learning center for the game.

This plush Pikachu is dressed in the traditional Japanese attire of shogi players, which includes a kimono, haori half coat, and hakama pants. This specific outfit is modeled after the one worn by shogi champion Shota Fujii, who, at 21, became the youngest and the first octuple crown holder in the history of professional shogi after winning the 71st Oza title match in October.

Shota Fujii contributed to the plushie’s design, and Pikachu is shown holding a shogi piece with the kanji for “osho” in Fujii’s brushstroke calligraphy. The Japan Shogi Association’s crowdfunding campaign is hosted on the Japanese website Readyfor, with this exclusive Pikachu as a reward for backers pledging 12,000 yen. Those who donate are expected to have the plush shipped out in October, so there’s plenty of time for fans to get their hands on this exclusive homage of Japanese and pop cultures!

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