Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush

Company: Play-By-Play

Year: 1999~2002

Size: various

Main distribution: Europe / Australia / Mexico and few other countries (amusement park, carnivals and fairs prizes)


Play-By-Play is a Spanish company based in València who make prizes of various IP. In the 2000s they had the Pokémon license and made many plush. Due to being amusement park / carnival / fair prizes, they were made in abundance and cheaply, with varied quality control, making some look better than others. Several sizes were made and different fabrics were used. 34 different Pokémon and Ash got the treatment.

All have the same round hang tag, half red and half blue, with the Pokémon logo on them.

Plush were made of Bulbasaur, Charmander, Charizard, Squirtle, Wartortle, Blastoise, Butterfree, Pidgeotto, Pikachu, Raichu, Sandshrew, Clefairy, Jigglypuff, Zubat, Meowth, Psyduck, Poliwhirl, Machop, Geodude, Gengar, Hitmonchan, Chansey, Horsea, Goldeen, Magmar, Eevee, Snorlax, Mewtwo, Mew and Togepi.
Later another set of plush were released; a new Pikachu, Pichu, Lugia, Celebi and Ash Ketchum.

I’ll never get all of them (nor want to) but I’ll document the ones I got / had. I used to find these a lot on markets and second hand shops but less so these days.

I don’t know if every Pokémon came in all sizes and material, or only a select few.

Charmander

Release: 2000
Size: 26cm
Fabric: short pile / smooth

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Charmander smooth 26cm front

Charmander is in a standing pose with his arms open. His mouth is slightly ajar. He has large plastic eyes, which are both the same, making him look to the right. They have a unique, anime look to them.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Charmander smooth 26cm right

His side profile actually looks like Charmander. He has small, white felt teeth and nails on his paws. He is orange, with a yellow belly.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Charmander smooth 26cm back

Its flame on the tip of its tail is represented by long red and yellow hair.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Charmander smooth 26cm left

He has hard carton or plastic in his mouth keeping it straight.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Charmander smooth 26cm tush tag 1

He has 2 tush tags on his left bum. They are quite thin and plasticy feeling. The first has Pokémon on one side, and Nintendo on the other.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Charmander smooth 26cm tush tag 2

The second tag displays how it’s a prize. These sides also display the year; 2000.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Charmander smooth 26cm tush tag 3

Lastly it shows the old Play-By-Play logo in Spain, with a Texas and UK line.

I found him in a charity shop in the UK.

Squirtle

Release: 2000
Size: 24cm
Fabric: long pile / fuzzy

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Squirtle fuzzy 24cm front
Sundamaged

Squirtle is in a standing pose with his arms open. His mouth is fabric, as well as his nose. He has large plastic eyes, which are mirrored. They have a unique, anime look to them. His belly has stitches to create the line pattern. His hands have little thumbs.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Squirtle fuzzy 24cm right
Sundamaged

His side profile looks like Squirtle. He is blue, with a yellow belly and orange and white shell. (Mine is sundamaged, so he’s very light / pastel coloured, they are darker normally).

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Squirtle fuzzy 24cm back
Sundamaged

His shell is made from a different material than the rest of the plush. It also has stitching to create the line pattern. His tail has the same fabric line as his mouth.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Squirtle fuzzy 24cm left
Sundamaged

He has hard carton in the bottom of his feet to help keep his feet flat and be able to stand.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Squirtle fuzzy 24cm tush tag 1
Sundamaged

He has 2 tush tags on the back of his left leg. They are quite thin and plasticy feeling. The first has Pokémon on one side, and Nintendo on the other.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Squirtle fuzzy 24cm tush tag 2
Sundamaged

The second tag displays how it’s a prize. These sides also display the year; 2000.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Squirtle fuzzy 24cm tush tag 3
Sundamaged

Lastly it shows the old Play-By-Play logo in Spain, with a Texas and UK line.

I won him in an arcade at Rhyl (Wales), on the seaside.

Blastoise

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise

Size: 16cm
Fabric: short pile / smooth

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 16cm front

Blastoise is in a standing pose with his arms curled inwards. His mouth is fabric, as well as his nose. He has small plastic eyes, which are mirrored. They have a unique, anime look to them. His belly has stitches to create the line pattern. His hands and feet have thick stuffed white nails. His inner ears are black.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 16cm right

His side profile looks like Blastoise. He is a dark blue, with a yellow belly and brown and white shell. His canons are silver, with a black thin cheap fabric glued on top.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 16cm back

His shell is made from a different material than the rest of the plush. The silver canons are a different material again, and feel a bit like pleather.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 16cm left

He has hard carton in the bottom of his feet to help keep his feet flat and be able to stand. He stands very stable due to his small tail acting as a third foot.

This one sadly has his tush tags cut off so I’m unable to determine what year he’s from, although I guess 2000. The tush tags would be on the back of his left leg.

I found him in a secondhand shop in the UK.

Release: 2000
Size: 22cm
Fabric: short pile / smooth

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 22cm front

This Blastoise is similar to the smaller one, although there are a few key differences, despite using the same pose and mostly same material. This Blastoise has iron on eyes, instead of plastic button eyes. It has the same anime look. Furthermore his inner ears are blue, despite being a different material than the rest of the blue.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 22cm right

He really is just an upscaled version of the smaller one (or the smaller one is downscaled?). He is made from the same dark blue fabric, with a yellow belly and brown and white shell. His canons are silver, with a black thin cheap fabric glued on top.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 22cm back

His shell is made from a different material than the rest of the plush like the smaller version. The silver canons are of different material yet again, and different from the smaller one. Although also feeling like pleather, it appears to be more textured, and more prone to cracking.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 22cm left

He also has hard carton in the bottom of his feet to help keep his feet flat and be able to stand. He stands very stable due to his small tail acting as a third foot.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 22cm tush tag 1

He has 2 tush tags under his shell at the back of his left leg. They are quite sturdy unlike the others. They are also quite tucked in, so hard to read. The first has Pokémon on one side, and Nintendo on the other.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 22cm tush tag 2

The second tag displays how it’s a prize. These sides also display the year; 2000.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Blastoise smooth 22cm tush tag 3

Lastly it shows the old Play-By-Play logo in Spain, with a Texas and UK line.

I found him in a charity shop in the UK.

Pikachu

Size: 24cm
Fabric: long pile / fuzzy

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pikachu fuzzy 24cm front

Pikachu is in a standing / sitting pose with his arms forwards. His mouth is fabric. He has a small plastic button nose, and large plastic button eyes. They are simple black circles with a white circle highlight. His red cheeks are also plastic buttons, but covered in red fabric.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pikachu fuzzy 24cm right

Although derpy from the front, his side profile does look like the chubby Pikachu from back then. He is in his iconic colours; yellow, with brown stripes on his back and bottom of tail, and black tipped ears.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pikachu fuzzy 24cm back

His tail is made from a different material than the rest of the plush. It should be attached to its body, but mine has been made loose. There is no stuffing in the tail.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pikachu fuzzy 24cm left

Its feet and hands are also made of a different material than the rest of the plush.

This one sadly has his tush tags cut off so I’m unable to determine what year he’s from, although I guess 1999~2000. The tush tags would be on the left side of his bum.

I got him secondhand from the Netherlands.

Snorlax

Release: 1999
Size: 18cm
Fabric: short pile / smooth

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Snorlax smooth 18cm front

Snorlax is in a standing pose with his arms alongside his body (or could be laying down?). His face features are fabric.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Snorlax smooth 18cm right

He looks like Snorlax. He has small, white felt teeth and nails on his paws. He is a darker green, with a light yellow belly and feet. Although Snorlax is more of a dark blue now, he used to be this green colour.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Snorlax smooth 18cm back

My Snorlax is surprisingly soft and not stuffed firmly. His left arm seems overstuffed, while his right barely has any.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Snorlax smooth 18cm left

He has hard carton in the bottom of his feet to help keep his feet flat and be able to stand.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Snorlax smooth 18cm tush tag 1

He has 3 tush tags in the center of his bum. They are quite thin and plasticy feeling. The first has Pokémon on one side, and Nintendo on the other.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Snorlax smooth 18cm tush tag 2

Unlike the others, there is no mention that he’s a prize only. The second tag mostly lists the material. The year is on Nintendo’s side; 1999.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Snorlax smooth 18cm tush tag 3

On the other side of the second tag it shows the old Play-By-Play logo in Texas. The last tag just has some legal information, and the other side is blank.

Won on the fair back in 1999 in the Netherlands.

Pichu

Release: 2002
Size: 29cm (to tip of ear)
Fabric: short pile / smooth

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pichu smooth 29cm front

Pichu is in a standing pose on his tippytoes with his arms sideways. His mouth, nose and cheeks are iron on, while his eyes are large plastic button eyes. They are simple black circles with a white circle highlight.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pichu smooth 29cm right

He is very flat looking from the side, whereas Pichu looks more chubby in the anime / games. His collar is made from cheap black velvet feeling fabric, and prone to curling.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pichu smooth 29cm back

His tail and the black on the ears is made from a different material than the rest of the plush. There is also no stuffing in the tail.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pichu smooth 29cm left

He has flexible carton in the bottom of his ears to help keep his ears upright.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pichu smooth 29cm tush tag front

He has only 1 tush tag on his left side. It’s quite thin and plasticy feeling. The front has Nintendo and Pokémon on it, as well as the year; 2002.

Pokémon Play-By-Play Plush Pichu smooth 29cm tush tag back

On the other side it shows the old Play-By-Play logo in Spain, as well as the year; 2002.


The Pokémon Play-By-Play plush will bring much nostalgia for any Western Pokémon fan. They were some of the first Pokémon plush we could get!

I remember vividly when the fun fairs had these in the Netherlands. Prior, they often just had generic teddies, and the licensed stuff looked weird or bootleg. Well, these weren’t an exception, most of these plush look derpy. But they were Pokémon (and officially licensed) so no one cared!

I used to have a smooth Pikachu from the crane machines on the fair. In fact, everyone had that one. I still find him loads secondhand. I used to have a really large one as well, that we won on the fair through some sort of weird lottery. You had to buy a stack of tickets with pictures on it, and there was a large board with pictures on a 3×3 grid. If you could make a line, you could pick a price. My entire family was buying tickets until I had won the giant Pikachu. My little brother kept sitting on him as if a chair, and he became quite squashed. I eventually sold him as a teen. I sold the derpy smaller Pikachu too back then.

Snorlax I also won in that time. Well, my dad won him. He was in the Balco Rotor, a game where the prices spun on a large circle, and you had to push them in the hole with a moving arm from the center. The arm moved automatically, you could only tell it when to start moving. I was terrible at it, but my dad was surprisingly good at it. I begged him to get me Snorlax! And to my surprise, he tried and won! Considering he hates plush (thinks they are dust magnets) and fairs (think they are a waste of money) and rarely showed interest in what we liked, this was quite a big deal for me.

A few years later Pichu was in the crane machines on the fair. I managed to get him out! I was quite into the Pichu Bros. at the time, so really wanted him, and must have spent quite some pocket money on him.

Decades passed and I had since moved to England. Shortly after, I find both Charmander and the bigger Blastoise in the local charity shop. Although not a fan of them, I bought them so I could decorate my studio with them, as none of my stuff was in the country yet and wanted it to feel more like home. I figured I’d sell them later again.

I got the fluffier Pikachu through a lot of Pikachu plush that I bought from the Netherlands. It had a Pikachu in it I really wanted, and I ended up with this one as well. As I rarely see the fluffy version, I kept it. Still not a fan of the derp, but the nostalgia is big with this one.

I found the smaller Blastoise in a secondhand shop in the UK later. I knew I had the bigger one, but figured a smaller one might be better. That’s when I noticed all the little differences in between them. The Play-By-Play plush hold many mysteries!

But the very best plush is here my “pastel” Squirtle. End May 2016 my boyfriend surprised me with a long weekend to Wales, on a roadtrip past the castles. We took the scenic route along the coast. We passed Rhyl, a seafront town with a large arcade. I wanted to stop but my boyfriend informed me we were on a tight schedule, but we could come back on the way home. So after an amazing weekend in Wales, we drove back home passed Rhyl again and stopped. We went in the arcades for what we assumed was some fun, but instead find a timewarp!

Although not in the machine themselves, they were all lined up on the shelves above! We asked if we won a plush out the machine if we could trade it, and they said ok. They seemed pretty confident, and my boyfriend warned how the UK claw machines are scams, but I got that Tweety out the machine and traded it for the Squirtle up there (that Tweety and Digimon were pretty old too!). Those Squirtle must have been in the sun at the sea for over a decade, as they had completely faded. But I love it! I love pastel coloured plush. And my boyfriend’s nickname for me is tiny turtle, which is Squirtle’s Pokédex entry, so it all just seemed perfect. The perfect closure to a perfect weekend.

They also had these (you see me holding Squirtle in the reflection)! They were brand new with plastic covers still on their eyes! They were impossible to get out though, and they wouldn’t let us just buy one. I think they were a bit upset we managed to win something out the other machine to be honest. But yes, that Squirtle is definitely the favourite.

The Play-By-Play plush are so nostalgic and remind me of a simpler, more fun time at the fair as a kid. Getting to find this gem on our perfect weekend getaway was also so special as it took me back to those times.

I am however downsizing my collection and as most of these are too derpy for my taste, I’m selling some. There are a lot of vintage collectors for these nowadays!
I’m keeping Squirtle of course, and I like the smaller ones (they also take up less space). I’m keeping Pikachu for now, but he might go in a later downsizing round. I hope the other half find nice new homes with collectors!

I still wanted to catalogue them here for everyone. These come in so many variations, I find it interesting to see them all. If I find any others I will add them here before selling on again.

If you like vintage or retro Pokémon plush, these are kinda cool, derpy and nostalgic. If you prefer something of more quality, you’d be best to avoid.


Got any more details / information you think I should add? Or did I get something wrong? Do you own the same plushies? Do you agree or disagree with my findings? Let me know in the comments below!

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