I’m often asked how a store can join the official Pokémon Organized Play program and start to run leagues. This is because it isn’t exactly the same as other manufacturer’s Organized Play programs. Pokémon has an extra step and an entry point that is somewhat different. To help, I thought I’d walk want-to-be organizers through the process and hopefully answer a few of the most frequently asked questions along the way.
Things you’ll need:
Either you or a player you know, need to have a reasonable knowledge of the Pokémon game and tournament rules. This is essential for later parts of the application.
First steps: Who and why?
Decide who will become your official organizer. It is highly recommended that you or an owner be the organizer. Staff and volunteers can move to other games or leave alltogether. You, however, are a permanent fixture and it’ll cause you less issues down the road.
Now have that person visit Pokémon’s web page that explains more about becoming a Pokémon Professor and organizer.
This page will take you through the reasons why you might want to become a Pokémon Professor (judge) and organizer. It also explains more about the roles and how to apply for both. This information is subject to periodic change and you should check back regularly to see what has been updated.
Next Steps: All the hows.
1. If you don’t have a Play! Pokémon account you need to create one at their website. Basically you have to first join as a player before you can move on to becoming a Professor or organizer.
2. Once you’ve created your account, log in and click on ‘Play! Pokémon Settings’ on the left navigation bar.
3. Complete all fields and make sure you click on the agreement to the terms and conditions. Also ensure you select the appropriate button if you need a Pokémon Player ID #. If you already have one you should click to other radio button and enter that in the appropriate field that now appears. After this, click ‘Submit’ at the bottom of the page.
4. On the page now displayed, click on ‘Organizer Information’ in the left navigation bar (see graphic). Next click on ‘Join the Professor Program’ (highlighted by the red arrow in the graphic). This takes you to the ‘Welcome to the Professor Program’ page.
Yes you are about to take a very basic Pokémon Professor test. If you’re not up-to-date with the Pokémon game and tournament rules, rest assured that the test is not timed and that the answers can be found on the Pokémon website and documents found on the rules and resources page.
5. Click on the ‘Organizer Basic’ button in the middle right section of the page (highlighted by the red arrow). Be sure to also click on the agreement to the background check. (This is essential to becoming a Pokémon organizer. No application will go forward unless you agree to a background check.) After that, click ‘continue’ on the bottom right of the page.
6. Take the Organizer Basic test, answer all questions, and click ‘continue’ when finished. The program will tell you immediately if you were successful.
7. After successfully completing step 6 you are done. Finalize the application and Pokémon will do the rest!
Note: It can take several days to a full working week for background checks to be completed. Therefore, the whole process could take up to 10 days from successful completion of the above.
Is it worth becoming an official Pokémon organizer?
YES! There are a lot of support materials you can get from Pokémon and they’ll advertise you as a center for Pokémon play on their website. All it costs is a little time to sign up. That’s a great return on a small time investment.