$10,000 grand prize cancelled
[Update: Uniqlo has disqualified a second finalist and their design from the competition. Their Mewtwo shirt will no longer be put into production.]
The Grand Prize winner of a recent Pokémon Sword & Shield competition, hosted by fashion label Uniqlo, has been disqualified after the discovery that they had violated the contest’s rules.
The competition asked fans to design Pokémon-themed shirts, with the winning entries being made into actual clothing to be sold in Uniqlo outlets. One Grand Prize winner would take home $10,000, a special trophy, and would see their design immortalised as in-game clothing in the upcoming Switch releasesPokémon Sword & Shield. The contest was understandably popular, raking in some 18,000 designs from across the globe.
Unfortunately, the grand prize winner would eventually reveal (in a post since removed from Chinese website Weibo) that their designs – which featured classic characters Magikarp and Gyarados- had been previously sold on a “small number” of smartphones cases. This violated a ruling in Uniqlo’s competition that all designs must have not been previously monetised in any form.
As a result of this, according to an official statement, Uniqlo has decided to abandon the entire concept of featuring any of the winners’ shirt designs in-game. The Grand Prize will not be re-assigned to any of the runner-up entrants, and the “in-game clothing” element of the prize has been removed from all marketing. It does appear, however, that second and third place winners will receive cash prizes of $2K and $1K respectively, and will still see their designs manufactured as real-world clothing.
Pokémon Sword & Shield is in development for a 2019 release on Nintendo Switch.