Yo-Kai Watch is huge in Japan. Huge. And while it's had more than two years to take over its country of origin, American children have yet to experience Level-5's highly addictive (and toyetic!) take on Pokemon.
Of course, that will all change on November 6th, when the original 2013 game finally hits the States. But you'll be able to at least try it somewhat sooner, as the 3DS eShop will begin offering a free demo of Level-5's upcoming RPG on October 22nd.
If anything, it'll be interesting to see if Yo-Kai Watch captures the minds of American kids—and the money of their parents—like Pokemon did when it landed in America nearly 20 years ago. It's certainly co-opting the same multimedia assault, with an anime tie-in, not to mention manga, spin-offs, and lots and lots of toys. Of course, there's a certain amount of inherent Japanese-ness to Yo-Kai Watch that goes beyond Pokemon's fantastical take on bugfighting, which may explain why it's taken Nintendo two years to figure out how to sell the idea to another country full of consumers.
But all of you jaded 20-somethings can rest assured that, at the very least, Yo-Kai Watch's weak American anime theme doesn't hold a candle to the emotional musical rollercoaster that opened every episode of Pokemon.