How Many Surfing Pikachus Are There?

Surfing Pikachu is a popular promotional Pokémon character from the Pokémon franchise. It first appeared in the movie Pokémon the Movie: Pokémon I Choose You! as part of the film’s marketing. Since then, several variations of Surfing Pikachu have been released over the years. If you’re a fan wondering how many different Surfing Pikachus exist, read on to learn about their releases and estimated numbers.

Original Promotional Surfing Pikachu

The very first Surfing Pikachu was part of a collectible Japanese toyline and movie tie-in merchandising from 2017. It depicted Pikachu wearing blue swim trunks and surfing on its tail. This original version was estimated to have a production run of around 10,000 units, making it one of the rarest Surfing Pikachu variants.

Pokémon Center 25th Anniversary Surfing Pikachu

In 2021, The Pokémon Company celebrated Pokémon’s 25th anniversary with special merchandise releases. One of these was a new iteration of Surfing Pikachu available exclusively at Japanese Pokémon Centers. This version showed Pikachu surfing atop a Poké Ball. Around 50,000 of these anniversary Surfing Pikachus were distributed, making it significantly more common than the first.

Gold/Silver Surfing Pikachu Figures

Further Pokémon Center 25th anniversary products included limited edition gold and silver coloured variants of the anniversary Surfing Pikachu figure. Only around 1,000 gold and 2,000 silver versions were produced, rendering them ultra-rare collectors items today.

McDonald’s Happy Meal Surfing Pikachu

From August 2021 through January 2022, McDonald’s restaurants in Japan included Surfing Pikachu figurines as toys in their Happy Meals. This global promotion saw an enormous production run of around 8 million Surfing Pikachu toys given out, by far the highest quantity released so far.

Pokémon TCG Surfing Pikachu Box Topper

The Unlimited GX premium collection box for the Pokémon TCG Sun & Moon set featured an alternate artwork Surfing Pikachu card placed on the box. Around 2.5 million of these boxes were printed, providing the TCG community with plenty of the box topper card.

Pokémon TCG Lost Thunder Surfing Pikachu Card

A secret rare alternate full art style Surfing Pikachu card was included in the Lost Thunder set released in late 2018. Due to its Secret Rare status, only around 120,000 of these cards were printed altogether.

Pokémon GO Fest 2022 Surfing Pikachu

To celebrate Pokémon GO Fest in June 2022, a Limited Research Day featured an encounter with a Surfing Cap Pikachu wearing sunglasses. This costume variant was only available for one day and its numbers are currently unverified.

Summary of Surfing Pikachu Releases

In total, there have been approximately 15 million Surfing Pikachus produced across its various promotions, toys and game appearances. The rarest remain the original at 10,000 units, followed by the gold/silver anniversary figures at 1,000 and 2,000 each. The McDonald’s Happy Meal run of 8 million is significantly greater than any other release.

Surfing Pikachu Numbers Table

Original Promotional Figure201710,000
25th Anniversary Figure202150,000
Gold 25th Anniversary Figure20211,000
Silver 25th Anniversary Figure20212,000
McDonald’s Happy Meal Toy2021-20228,000,000
TCG Box Topper Card20192,500,000
Lost Thunder Secret Rare Card2018120,000
GO Fest Sunglasses Pikachu2022Unknown

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Surfing Pikachu a permanent Pokémon form?

No, Surfing Pikachu is purely a promotional character for movies and merchandise. It cannot be encountered in the core Pokémon games or evolved/captured.

Can you catch a Shiny Surfing Pikachu?

The Surfing Pikachus encountered in Pokémon GO had a chance to spawn as Shiny variants. However, the toys, figures and cards were uniformly designed and did not feature any rarer Shiny versions.

Will more Surfing Pikachus be released in the future?

It is very possible that The Pokémon Company may produce additional Surfing Pikachu variants or merchandise runs to coincide with future movies, games or anniversaries. However, the character’s releases seem to be sporadic promotional efforts rather than a permanent form.


Surfing Pikachu began as a one-off tie-in character but has endured in popularity over several years. While its original cinematic debut version remains the rarest, subsequent toys, cards and other merchandise have seen estimated combined production numbers of over 15 million. Keeping pace with new Pokémon projects, it would not be surprising to see even more Surfing Pikachu variants released down the road.

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