Digimon (Japanese: デジモン, Hepburn: Dejimon, branded as Digimon: Digital Monsters, stylized as DIGIMON), short for "Digital Monsters" (デジタルモンスター Dejitaru Monsutā), is a Japanese media franchise encompassing virtual pet toys, anime, manga, video games, films and a trading card game. The franchise focuses on the eponymous creatures, who inhabit a "Digital World", a parallel universe that originated from Earth's various communication networks.
|Created by||Bandai, WiZ|
|Original work||Digital Monster (1997)|
|Films and television|
|Television series||See below|
|Video game(s)||See below|
The franchise was created in 1997 as a series of virtual pets, intended as the masculine counterpart to Tamagotchi. The creatures were first designed to look cute and iconic even on the devices' small screens; later developments had them created with a harder-edged style influenced by American comics. The franchise gained momentum with an early video game, Digimon World, released only in Japan in January 1999. Several anime series and films including its first anime incarnation, Digimon Adventure, which based on both video game and digital pet have been released, and the video game series has expanded into genres such as role-playing, racing, fighting, and MMORPGs.
Conception and creation
The Digimon franchise began as a series of virtual pets created by WiZ and Bandai, intended as a masculine counterpart to the more female-oriented Tamagotchi pets. It was released in June 1997 with the name Digimon, short for Digital Monster. This device shows to players a virtual pet composed entirely of data and designed to play and fight. In February 1998, the DigiMon fighting game, compatible with Windows 95 and developed by Rapture Technologies, Inc., was announced. The one-shot manga C'mon Digimon, designed by Tenya Yabuno, was published in the Japanese magazine V-Jump by Shueisha in 1997.
A second generation of virtual pets was marketed six months after the launch of the first, followed by a third in 1998. Each player starts with a baby-level digital creature that has a limited number of attacks and transformations and to make the creature stronger by training and nourishing the creature; when the player is successful in a workout, the Digimon becomes strong, when the player fails, the Digimon becomes weak. Two devices can be connected, allowing two players to battle with their respective creatures, an innovation at the time, however, the battle is only possible from the moment the creature is in the child level or bigger. Playgrounds and subways were where the majority of users of the apparatus were concentrated; The virtual pet was banned in some Asian schools by being considered by parents and teachers as very noisy and violent. The first Digimon were created by Japanese designer Kenji Watanabe, influenced by American comics, which were beginning to gain popularity in Japan, and as such began to make his characters look stronger and "cool." Other types of Digimon, which until the year 2000 totalled 279, came from extensive discussions and collaborations between the Bandai company members.
The original Digital Monster model that was released in 1997 sold 14 million units worldwide, including 13 million units in Japan and 1 million overseas, up until March 2004. By 2005, more than 24 million Digital Monster units had been sold worldwide.
This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page. (Learn how and when to remove these template messages)
Though most works in the franchise are contained within their own continuity, they all share basic setting and lore elements. Most Digimon stories begin with a human child coming into contact with a Digimon, either through accidentally entering the Digital World  or encountering a Digimon who has come into the human world. The child or children will find themselves equipped with a "digivice", a device modelled after the series' virtual pets that enables them to empower their partner Digimon.
While some digimon act like wild beasts, many form small societies and follow governing bodies such as the Royal Knights or Digimon Sovereign. Digimon can grow through evolution (or "digivolution" in most English-language dubs) by absorbing additional data and changing forms; the process is normally linear but there are other methods. For example, "Jogress" (a portmanteau of "joint progress"; "DNA Digivolution" in most English-language dubs) is when two or more Digimon combine into a single being. Though evolution can occur naturally, Digimon can progress faster and into stronger forms when partnered with a human.
Multiple Digimon anime series have been produced by Toei Animation since 1999. The first of these was Digimon Adventure; it began as a short film, but after its storyboard was finished, a request for the film to become a television series was made. The film debuted in theaters a day before the series debuted on TV.
The first six Digimon series were adapted into English for release in Western markets, with the first four treated as a single show under the collective title Digimon: Digital Monsters. The sixth series, Digimon Fusion, was only partially localized; its third season was never adapted into English.
|First aired||Last aired|
|1||Digimon Adventure (1999)||54||March 7, 1999||March 26, 2000||Fuji TV|
|2||Digimon Adventure 02||50||April 2, 2000||March 25, 2001|
|3||Digimon Tamers||51||April 1, 2001||March 31, 2002|
|4||Digimon Frontier||50||April 7, 2002||March 30, 2003|
|5||Digimon Data Squad||48||April 2, 2006||March 25, 2007|
|6||Digimon Fusion||79||July 6, 2010||March 25, 2012||TV Asahi|
|7||Digimon Universe: App Monsters||52||October 1, 2016||September 30, 2017||TV Tokyo|
|8||Digimon Adventure (2020)||67||April 5, 2020||September 26, 2021||Fuji TV|
|9||Digimon Ghost Game||60+1 special||October 3, 2021||Present|
Several Digimon featurette films were released in Japan, with some of them seasonal tie-ins for their respective television series. Footage from the first three films was used for the American-produced Digimon: The Movie.
Distribution and localization
In the United States, the first three series that made up Digimon: Digital Monsters first aired on Fox Kids from August 14, 1999 to June 8, 2002. The localized series was produced by Saban Entertainment, which would be acquired by The Walt Disney Company during the show's Fox Kids run. Some scenes from the original shows were modified or omitted in order to comply with Fox's standards and practices. The show also featured more jokes and added dialogue, along with a completely different musical score. As a cross-promotional stunt, 2001 and 2002 saw Digi-Bowl specials co-produced with Fox Sports; NFL on Fox commentator Terry Bradshaw provided interstitial segments in-between episodes as if the episodes were actually a football game.
Disney's acquisition of Saban would result in Digimon airing on Disney's TV networks and programming blocks. Reruns of the show would begin airing on the cable network ABC Family on March 4, 2002, while the fourth series, Digimon Frontier, premiered on UPN's Disney's One Too block. UPN aired the series until late August 2003, when they severed their ties to Disney. Frontier would also air in reruns on ABC Family and on Toon Disney under the Jetix branding. An English version of Digimon Data Squad, produced by Studiopolis, would premiere October 1, 2007, on Toon Disney. Around this time, the remaining Digimon Adventure 02 movie, both Tamers movies and the Frontier movie would also be dubbed and aired on Toon Disney in the US, with most actors from the TV series reprising their roles. The Data Squad/Savers movie however would not get a North American localised English dub produced.
In September 2012, Saban Brands, a successor to Saban Entertainment, announced it had acquired the Digimon anime franchise. Saban would announce that they would be producing an English dub for Digimon Xros Wars, retitled Digimon Fusion, for broadcast on Nickelodeon in the United States starting September 7, 2013. Saban Capital Group would later sell most of Saban Brands' entertainment properties to Hasbro in 2018 and shutter the division in July of that year.
The Digimon Adventure tri. series would be distributed in North America by Eleven Arts. The English dub would utilize localized names from Saban's original dub, reunite several voice actors from the original cast, and feature a remixed version of the English opening theme, while retaining the original Japanese score. Shout! Factory would acquire the broadcast and home media distribution rights for the films.
In Canada, the English versions of Digimon were broadcast on YTV, with the exception of Data Squad, which aired in Family Channel's Jetix block. YTV would eventually acquire Digimon Fusion, but only the first 26 episodes were shown.
In the United Kingdom, Digimon first aired on Fox Kids. ITV's children's slot CITV would broadcast Adventure, Adventure 02 and several episodes of Tamers during after school hours from 2001–2002. The rest of Tamers aired on Fox Kids from 2002–03. Digimon Frontier was originally announced to be broadcast on Jetix, but the series was later dropped. The series eventually saw a release on October 29, 2018. In 2011, Digimon Data Squad aired on Kix!. According to Fox Kids' (2000–03) and Kix's (2010–) BARB Television ratings, Adventure, Adventure 02 & Tamers have been the most popular series'/seasons in the United Kingdom and was consistently in the weekly top 10 broadcasts for both channels for new episodes. Broadcast rights and merchandising sub-licensing rights for Digimon Fusion in the UK have been acquired by ITV Studios Global Entertainment. Digimon Fusion had aired since Spring 2014 on digital terrestrial channel, CITV.
Digimon first appeared in narrative form in the one-shot manga C'mon Digimon, released in the summer of 1997. C'mon Digimon spawned the popular Digimon Adventure V-Tamer 01 manga, written by Hiroshi Izawa, which began serialization on November 21, 1998.
- C'mon Digimon
- Digimon Adventure V-Tamer 01
- Digimon Chronicle
- Digimon Next
- Digimon Xros Wars
- Digimon World Re:Digitize
- Digimon World Re:Digitize Decode
- Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth
- Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth – Hacker's Memory
- Digimon Chronicle X
- Digimon Dreamers
Yuen Wong Yu manhua
A Chinese manhua was written and drawn by Yuen Wong Yu (余 遠鍠 Yu Yuen-wong), who based its storyline on the television series. This adaptation covers Digimon Adventure in five volumes, Digimon Adventure 02 in two, Digimon Tamers in four, and Digimon Frontier in three. The original stories are heavily abridged, though on rare occasions events play out differently from the anime. The Chinese-language version was published by Rightman Publishing Ltd. in Hong Kong. Yu also wrote D-Cyber.
Two English versions were also released. The first one was published by Chuang Yi in Singapore. The second one, which was adapted by Lianne Sentar, was released by TOKYOPOP in North America.
The three volumes for Digimon Frontier have been released by Chuang Yi in English. These have not been released by TOKYOPOP in North America or Europe. However, the Chuang Yi releases of Digimon Frontier were distributed by Madman Entertainment in Australia.
Dark Horse Comics published American-style Digimon comic books, adapting the first thirteen episodes of the English dub of Digimon Adventure in 2001. The story was written by Daniel Horn and Ryan Hill, and illustrated by Daniel Horn and Cara L. Niece.
The Italian publishing company, Panini, approached Digimon in different ways in different countries. While Germany created their own adaptations of episodes, the United Kingdom (UK) reprinted the Dark Horse titles, then translated some of the German adaptations of Adventure 02 episodes. Eventually the UK comics were given their own original stories, which appeared in both the UK's official Digimon Magazine and the official UK Fox Kids companion magazine, Wickid. These original stories only roughly followed the continuity of Adventure 02. When the comic switched to the Tamers series the storylines adhered to continuity more strictly; sometimes it would expand on subject matter not covered by the original Japanese anime (such as Mitsuo Yamaki's past) or the English adaptations of the television shows and movies (such as Ryo's story or the movies that remained undubbed until 2005). In a money saving venture, the original stories were later removed from Digimon Magazine, which returned to printing translated German adaptations of Tamers episodes. Eventually, both magazines were cancelled.
The Digimon series has inspired various video games, including the Digimon World and Digimon Story sub-series of role-playing games. Other genres have included life simulation, adventure, video card game, strategy, and racing games.
By March 2001, Bandai had sold approximately 1 million video games worldwide, including 400,000 in Japan. In February 2010, a website for the MMORPG Digimon Battle Online was launched. On September 22, 2011, online game publisher Joymax announced the release of an MMORPG game called Digimon Masters, which was developed by the Korean publisher DIGITALIC. In June 2021 it was announced that they were developing a new MMORPG titled Digimon Super Rumble.
In 2011, a new entry in the Digimon World series was announced after a seven-year hiatus, titled Digimon World Re:Digitize. The game would be released in Japan on July 19, 2012, followed by an enhanced version for Nintendo 3DS released in 2013.
Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth was first released in Japan in 2015. It would be the first game in the Digimon Story series to be released in North America under its original title; Digimon World DS and Digimon World Dawn and Dusk were originally marketed as entries in the Digimon World series, with the latter game being the last to be released in the West for nine years until Cyber Sleuth's release on February 2, 2016.
There have also been several mobile games. Digimon Links was active from March 2016 to July 2019, and was similar to the Story games in that the player raised digimon in a farm and fought enemies using team of three of their digimon. It was succeeded by Digimon ReArise, which launched June 2018 in Japan and October 2019 in America.
The Digimon Collectible Card Game is a card game based on Digimon, first introduced in Japan in 1997 and published by Bandai. The third season (Digimon Tamers) utilized this aspect of the franchise by making the card game an integral part of the season. Versions of the card game are also included in some of the Digimon video games including Digital Card Battle and Digimon World 3.
During the fourth anime (Digimon Frontier), Bandai created the D-Tector Card Game to tie in to their own D-Tector virtual pet toys. This was a West-only card game. From February 25, 2011 to September 28, 2012, Digimon Jintrix was an online card game supported by physical card releases. It was followed up by the mobile game Digimon Crusader, which lasted fom December 2012 to December 2017. In 2020 a new card game was launched to coincide with Digimon Adventure: using a new system, this was released in the West in January 2021.
- Pixelmood. "Pixelmood - Digimon". Tamatalk. Retrieved 22 March 2014.
- "渡辺けんじスペシャルインタビュー" [Kenji Watanabe Special Interview]. デジタルモンスター ART BOOK Ver.1～5&20th [Digital Monster ART BOOK Ver.1~5&20th]. Bandai. 2017-12-09.
- "デジモンペンデュラム開発者インタビュー" [Digimon Pendulum Developers’ Interview]. デジタルモンスター ART BOOK Ver.PENDULUM [Digital Monster ART BOOK Ver.PENDULUM]. Bandai. 2018-11-21.
- "Radica Games Limited Announces Manufacturing Agreement For New Innovative Digimon Product". PR Newswire. Archived from the original on 13 April 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
- Matt Richtel (January 1, 1998). "From Virtual Pet to Virtual Pit Bull: Fighting Cyber Toys". The New York Times. Retrieved March 22, 2014.
- Dedpool (March 28, 2013). "DVD Review: Digimon Adventure – Volume 2". BeyondHollywood.com. Archived from the original on April 1, 2014. Retrieved March 28, 2014.
- "Pokémon, G-Boy Lead Parade of Toys at Fair". Billboard. Vol. 112, no. 13. March 2000. p. 60. Retrieved April 18, 2014.
- David Zdyrko (5 July 2000). "Digimon World. We promise not to say the word Pokemon at all in this entire review". IGN. Retrieved March 23, 2014.
- Tiphaine Clotault (10 December 1997). "Le nouveau Tamagotchi sera sexué. Une gamme pour assurer la rente du fabricant". Libération (in French). Retrieved April 11, 2014.
- Bandai Digital Entertainment Corp. (17 February 1998). "Bandai Digital Entertainment Ready To Rumble in June with DigiMon CD-ROM". The Free Library. Archived from the original on 11 September 2017. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
- "Digimon C'mon" (in Czech). digitalnimonstra.cz. Archived from the original on 2014-04-13. Retrieved 22 March 2014.
- "Reprenons au début". Digimon France. 3 March 2009. Retrieved 7 November 2010.
- Lesley Aeschliman. "Digimon". Bella Online. Retrieved 9 May 2014.
- "DigiMon Virtual Pet Page". virtualpet.com. Retrieved 24 June 2010.
- Wolf, Mark (2008). The Video Game Explosion: A History From PONG to Playstation and Beyond. Santa Barbara, California: Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 218. ISBN 978-0-313-33868-7.
- Sarah Ryle (14 May 2000). "Digital pests invade Britain". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
- Ruki Sayid (15 May 2000). "Digimon's coming; New monster toys may KO Pokemon". The Mirror. The Free Library. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
- 『デジモンワールド リ：デジタイズ デコード』 イラストレーターインタビュー！. Famitsu (in Japanese). 5 July 2013. Retrieved 12 February 2014.
- "New Digimon for 2005". Anime News Network. 25 May 2004. Retrieved 23 March 2014.
- "Bandai Unveils New Digimon Virtual Pets". Anime News Service. November 11, 2005. Archived from the original on 2017-05-13. Retrieved 2 October 2021.
- Hosoda, Mamoru (director) (March 7, 1999 - March 26, 2000). Digimon Adventure (anime). Japan: Toei Animation.
- Kaizawa, Yukio (director) (April 1, 2001 - March 31, 2002). Digimon Tamers (anime). Japan: Toei Animation.
- "オメガモン | デジモン図鑑". デジモンウェブ | デジモン公式総合サイト (in Japanese). Retrieved 2021-08-20.
- "チンロンモン | デジモン図鑑". デジモンウェブ | デジモン公式総合サイト (in Japanese). Retrieved 2021-08-20.
- "United We Stand" ("Jogress Evolve Now, Hearts Together as One"). Digimon Adventure 02. Episode 26. October 1, 2000.
- "15 Best Digimon Adventure Characters of All Time". My Otaku World. 2020-12-29. Retrieved 2021-10-16.
- "Digimon: Digital Monsters Episode Guide". Fox Family Properties. Archived from the original on 2001-06-15. Retrieved 2018-11-02.
- Luster, Joseph (May 5, 2018). "New "Digimon" Project Announced, Final "tri." Chapters Hit Crunchyroll". Crunchyroll. Retrieved May 7, 2018.
- Loo, Egan (July 29, 2018). "Digimon Gets New Film Project With Original Anime's Staff, Aged Characters". Anime News Network. Retrieved July 29, 2018.
- デジモンパートナーズ【公式】(@DM_Partners). "＜＜＜2大重大発表＞＞＞新作TVアニメ 「デジモンゴーストゲーム」 フジテレビほかにて2021年秋放送！ 本宮大輔たち『02』の物語となる新作映画製作決定！【田口智久 × 大和屋暁】超特報映像公開！ https://youtu.be/IsMYoRUXIHo #デジモン #digimon #デジモンアドベンチャー02 #デジフェス2021" August 1, 2021, 11:42 AM. Tweet.
- "Anime News Network: "Digimon Franchise Gets New Fall TV Anime, New Digimon Adventure 02 Anime Film"".
- "正式タイトルは『デジモンアドベンチャー02 THE BEGINNING』！02キャラデザイン＆キャスト続投も発表".
- "Digimon: Digital Monsters: Digibowl 2002". Fox Family Properties. Archived from the original on 2002-01-23. Retrieved 2018-11-05.
- "ABC Family March 2002 Schedule" (PDF). ABC Family. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2005-09-17. Retrieved 2021-11-10.
- Erickson, Hal (2005). Television Cartoon Shows: An Illustrated Encyclopedia, 1949 Through 2003, Volume 1. McFarland & Company. p. 249. ISBN 978-0786420995.
- Crowe, Deborah (September 25, 2012). "Saban Brands Acquires Digimon Anime Brand". Los Angeles Business Journal. Retrieved September 26, 2012.
- "Saban Brands Acquires Digimon Anime Franchise". AnimeNewsNetwork. September 25, 2012. Retrieved September 26, 2012.
- Sarah (September 25, 2012). "Saban Brands Acquires Digimon Brand". BSCKids. Archived from the original on September 28, 2012. Retrieved September 26, 2012.
- "Nickelodeon dives into Digimon | News". C21Media. Archived from the original on 2013-04-16. Retrieved 2013-04-22.
- "Hasbro buying Power Rangers, other brands in $522M deal". ABC News. AP. May 1, 2018. Retrieved May 1, 2018.
- "Saban Brands Sells Power Rangers to Hasbro for $522M". Los Angeles Business Journal. May 2, 2018. Retrieved March 3, 2019.
- "Eleven Arts CEO Ko Mori Speaks on DIGIMON TRI. English Release". ComicsVerse. July 8, 2016. Archived from the original on August 9, 2016. Retrieved July 24, 2016.
- "Inside the English Dub Premiere of Digimon Adventure Tri". Anime News Network. September 16, 2016. Archived from the original on September 16, 2016. Retrieved September 17, 2016.
- "Shout! Factory Licenses 1st 3 Digimon Adventure tri. Anime Films". Anime News Network. January 17, 2017. Archived from the original on January 18, 2017. Retrieved January 17, 2017.,
- "Digimon Adventure tri. -- Confession Collectible DVD and BD Combo Pack Debut in Stores December 5, 2017". Anime News Network. October 26, 2017. Archived from the original on November 4, 2018. Retrieved November 5, 2017.
- "AW Slate". us12.campaign-archive.com.
- "Viewing Data Top 10s". BARB (Broadcasters' Audience Research Board). Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- Clancy, Michelle. "ITV to broadcast Digimon Fusion anime in 2014". Rapid TV News. Retrieved 22 October 2013.
- Dickson, Jeremy. "ITV licenses Digimon Fusion". Kidsscreen. Retrieved 22 October 2013.
- "New Digimon Manga from Tenya Yabuno in Saikyo Jump Beginning Next Month". With The Will. 2021-09-03. Archived from the original on 2021-09-03.
- "Lianne Sentar's Other Published Works/Works List". Liannesentar.com. 2011-10-23. Retrieved 2012-08-19.
- Horn, Daniel; Ryan Hill (2001). Digimon: Digital Monsters. illustrated by Daniel Horn, Cara L. Niece. Dark Horse Comics. ISBN 1-56971-516-5.
- Annual Report. Bandai. 2001. p. 7.
During the year ended March 31, 2001, domestic unit sales of Digitmon video-game software amounted to some 400,000, while global unit sales totaled approximately 1 million.
- "Digimon Battle- The Journey Begins. To the Digital World". Digimonbattle.wemade.net. Retrieved 2012-08-15.
- "Digimon Masters OBT Sept 27th - iMMOsite get your gaming life recorded". my.mmosite.com. 2011-09-22. Archived from the original on 2011-09-24. Retrieved 2012-08-15.
- "Digimon Super Rumble - Unreal Engine 4 MMORPG announced for PC". MMO Culture. 2021-06-09. Retrieved 2021-08-20.
- Romano, Sal. "Digimon World Re: Digitize a "return to origins"". Gematsu. Retrieved 7 August 2014.
- Romano, Sal. "Digimon World Re: Digitize Decode announced for 3DS". Gematsu. Retrieved 7 August 2014.
- Romano, Sal. "First look at Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth". Retrieved 7 August 2014.
- "Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth Inflitrates [sic] the West". Made For Gaming. July 5, 2015. Archived from the original on September 10, 2015. Retrieved July 5, 2015.
- "Digimon Linkz - Wikimon - The #1 Digimon wiki". wikimon.net. Retrieved 2021-08-20.
- "デジモンリアライズ | バンダイナムコエンターテインメント公式サイト". デジモンリアライズ | バンダイナムコエンターテインメント公式サイト (in Japanese). Retrieved 2021-08-20.
- "Digimon Jintrix - Wikimon - The #1 Digimon wiki". wikimon.net. Retrieved 2021-08-20.
- "デジモンクルセイダー(デジクル) | バンダイナムコゲームス公式サイト". 2015-02-08. Archived from the original on 2015-02-08. Retrieved 2021-08-20.
- "デジモンカードゲーム". デジモンカードゲーム (in Japanese). Retrieved 2021-08-20.