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The first episode of the Pokémon series begins by saying that Ash can only now get his Pokémon License, and you have to be at least 10 years old to become a Pokémon Trainer and get a Pokemon from Prof. Oak. The question is: in the world of the Pokémon anime, why it is limited to only those 10 or over? In the games, you can see even kids have Pokémon and invite you to battle.

This returns in the Advanced series where Max, despite having great knowledge, can't be a Pokémon trainer, and Bonnie in the XY series wants her brother to keep Dedenne for her until she's grown up.

Though you can say that 10 is the "age of responsibility" in the Pokémon world, it's very hard to say that. In our world, 10-year-olds are literally kids, and to say that it is the "age of responsibility" would be a joke, especially with Ash's behavior.

And I'm not looking for an answer like "it's a kid show", but a reasonable answer to the anime plot.

  • The boring answer is "because the Pokemon world's government decided that was a reasonable age limit". In California you can get a hunting license at 12 and a driver's license at 16, but you're still a minor until age 18, and you can't buy alcohol until 21. So it's possible ten-year-olds are still minors in the Pokemon world, but are allowed certain privileges, like registering with the Pokemon League and competing for gym badges, that are denied to those under ten, just like under-sixteens in California can't drive. – Torisuda Feb 2 at 7:43
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I agree with you that the age of ten isn’t really the “age of responsibility” but I think the reason is because they learn all about these Pokémon in what I guess to be elementary school, so when they reach the age of ten, most of them (in our universe) would be going to middle school and that’s the time most kids are “learning” to become responsible.

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  • Your answer has lacked the answer itself - why, if so, a kid 10 years old that learns responsible, would take a journey with his Pokemon around the world if he doesn't really have the responsibility? – USerNAme Jan 29 at 18:22

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