Pokémon-playing fish raids owner’s credit card

Betta fish buys stops fighting and buys points at Nintendo eShop

A Japanese YouTuber has been compensated by Nintendo after he accidentally gave his Pokémon-playing fish control of his PC and access to his credit card.

While Thai people tremble in baseless fear of USB cables stealing their cash, Japanese Pokéfan YouTuber Mutekimaru, aka Maurice, learned a not-too-painful lesson about the need to teach our aquatic friends some sound financial habits.

Maurice runs a YouTube channel devoted to his fish’s gaming career. The fish is addicted to games in the Pokémon series.

Also known as the betta fish, Maurice’s Siamese fighting fish controls the game by swimming to different areas of its tank. The whole tank has been outfitted with sensors that track the Pokémon-playing fish’s movements and coordinate them with the buttons on Maurice’s Nintendo Switch controller.

Maurice set up the system to live stream the fish playing Pokémon Violet, the latest entry in the series and one in which the fish does not consider himself especially skilled. A malfunction during gameplay led to the Nintendo Switch returning to its home screen and the fish began to spell out disaster.

Older readers of a volatile temperament are advised only to watch the following video on a heavy, 1980s-style desktop computer. Smaller, more moveable, devices could easily be smashed as you struggle to turn off the music if it is music.

When the system malfunctioned, the fish can be seen struggling in vain to restart the game, but succeeds only in opening the Nintendo eShop and spending US$4 (120 baht) of his owner’s money on points, behaviour that many in the Pokémon world consider “bad form,” if not outright cheating.

Enraged that its fun appeared to be over, the fish vindictively reveals Maurice’s credit card information on the live stream.

Maurice’s old-school Pokémon-playing fish then downloads an app to play its preferred Nintendo 64 games and spent the reward currency on a new avatar. With thoughts of leaving the aquarium and ending the virtual slavery clearly at the front of his mind, the fish went on to request information regarding Maurice’s PayPal account and changed the account name from the unimpressive human-sounding “Mutekimaru” to the much fishier “ROWAWAWAWA.”

In an attempt to cover its tracks – an inexplicable thing for a fish to do – the fish powered off the Nintendo Switch console before Maurice came home and discovered what had been happening.

Maurice said he reached out to Nintendo to explain the unusual incident and the company has refunded the money spent by the aquatic gamer.


Jon Whitman

Jon Whitman is a seasoned journalist and author who has been living and working in Asia for more than two decades. Born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, Jon has been at the forefront of some of the most important stories coming out of China in the past decade. After a long and successful career in East sia, Jon is now semi-retired and living in the Outer Hebrides. He continues to write and is an avid traveller and photographer, documenting his experiences across the world.

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