Yo-Kai Watch is a 3DS RPG that launched one of developer Level-5's most successful cross-media franchises in Japan alone. As hero Nate or heroine Katie, the player is granted the titular device and the ability to see Yo-Kai (supernatural creatures from Japanese folklore) after an encounter with the friendly spirits Whisper and Jibanyan. Together, the three travel across their city in search of other mischievous Yo-Kai haunting the populace.
Players must challenge these Yo-Kai in turn-based battles where they can summon up to three other Yo-Kai at once from a pool of six. Player Yo-Kai can be swapped during battle as desired in similar fashion to Nintendo's Pokemon series. Defeating other Yo-Kai will reward Nate or Katie with special Yo-Kai Medals they can later use to summon the spirits to their cause, thus increasing the player's roster of team members. There are eight classes of Yo-Kai, each with different strengths and weaknesses against one another; this encourages players to aim for variety when recruiting Yo-Kai to summon. Indeed, players are required to collect certain Yo-Kai in order to progress through the main storyline.
New Yo-Kai can also be earned randomly through a special "vending machine" that uses in-game currency or 3DS Play Coins. Collecting a combination of specific Yo-Kai also unlocks unique Yo-Kai to summon.
In addition to the main storyline, Yo-Kai Watch offers a number of side quests including the option to enter a "nightmare" realm where the goal is to collect special items from treasure chests while avoiding and escaping from powerful Yo-Kai. Other special items can be earned from bug-catching or fishing minigames throughout the city.
Nintendo will handle publishing duties for Yo-Kai Watch video games outside of Japan, and the North American debut of the first game will be joined with licensed toy merchandise localized by Hasbro as well as an international release of the television anime series.
This game is also known as Youkai Watch in Japan.