The Pokemon Center Just Released The Best Thing Ever & I Am Crying

The Pokemon Company has released a new set of Trainer gallery set, and it’s focus on Sword & Shield’s Galar region made me tear up.

Pokemon Center Releases New Galar Trainer Collection

Image via The Pokemon Company

To say I am a Pokemon fan is probably a bit of an understatement. I saved for my first Game Boy when I was seven years old. I’ve played every generation as they’ve released, and my office is literally decorated from top to bottom with plushies, posters, figures, and TCG Elite Trainer Boxes. It is over 25 years of dedicated adoration – and I have not a sliver of regret for the energy that has gone into it. However, the newest release of Trainer merchandise from The Pokemon Center has taken me by surprise, with Galar Trainers bringing tears to my eyes.

Pokemon Sword & Shield was released in the fall of 2019, and, I won’t lie, I had my reservations. Huge wild areas to wander around? Shortened routes? Super-Sized Pikachu? It felt a bit too far from my pixelated adventures through Kanto, and I was nervous to experience the change. However, as I fell into Galar, I found every aspect of the region was everything I’d always wanted. I certainly didn’t know it was going to save me the following year.

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My Adventures Through Sword & Shield Saved My Life

Image via The Pokemon Company

In 2020, I found myself housebound, pregnant with my son, and locked away from everyone I loved. I was extremely lonely as I went through changes that were going to alter the way I lived my life completely. One night in May, I pulled out my Switch and booted up Pokemon Sword. I walked out into the Wild Area, over the bridge beside the Motostoke Riverbank, and I stood there, looking at the sky. As trainers raced by me on their bikes and Pokemon scuttled through the grass, I felt like I could breathe for the first time in months.

After that, I began organizing play sessions online with my friends. We jumped in and out of Gigantamax battles together. I caught my Shiny Dusk Form Lycanroc Bluley, and before I knew it, I was 600 hours into my save.

In addition to this, Sword & Shield has the most amazing group of NPC trainers, and I found myself utterly taken with Pier’s story. I even run a casual competition deck based on his team – with no VMAX cards, of course. My friends call it the “Goons,” and it is considered more or less unbeatable by our group of TCG players.

A Chance To Connect With Pokemon Trainers Who Changed Me

With so much love for Galar in my heart, it is easy to want to add little trinkets and bobbles to my Pokemon collection that embody the region and everything it means to me. However, because of the 2020 disaster, it was very hard to find anything that celebrated Piers, Leon, Raihan, or any of the amazing Galar Pokemon species that are now my team staples. I searched endlessly for Team Yell hoodies and watched The Pokemon Center like a hawk but to little avail.

That was until I visited the US Pokemon Center store page on 07/14/2023 and was met with a beautiful banner declaring the expansion of the Trainer Gallery items. I have the original set featuring favorites like Steven and Cynthia already up on my office walls, but when I saw Leon, Raihan, and Piers in the banner, I teared up. I don’t know that I have ever been so blown away by anything Pokemon has ever made as I was with these posters, sweatshirts, and t-shirts.

If I could, I would snatch up every single one of the trainer shirts and tell you all how much I adore them. I’m the proud owner of so many Pokemon clothing items, and the quality, color, and design never stops delighting me. As it is, I have invested in the Piers pullover and will write a review about it as soon as it comes in the mail. In addition to that, the “C” set of posters will join “A” and “B” on my walls, adding to the other trainers already bringing light to my office space.

I also couldn’t pass up on that free Pokemon Incubator Bag either, so now I have a backpack to properly display my Obstagoon plushie on my way to TCG and VGC matches.

Pokemon has and always will play a critical role in my life, and having the opportunity to add a little more Galar to my day is such a special treat. So I hope you’ll grab a sweater and some curry and celebrate all the Galar trainers as well. After all, the fun is in the journey, and every time you pick up a Pokemon game – the power to be free is in your hands.