We may still be experiencing a bitter, wet and miserable winter, but while 2016 may only be a few days old, there's plenty of reason to believe things are going to get a lot better from here on in. After all, this year marks the 20th anniversary of Pokemon - and there's a whole lot going on gaming wise to keep us busy.
To start us off, Nintendo will be releasing three new special edition Pokémon-themed Nintendo 2DS hardware bundles, each available to buy from 27th February. The kid-friendly consoles will come in transparent red, blue and yellow (we see what they did there), and each have a copy of the respective original Pokémon game pre-installed - Pokémon Red Version, Pokémon Blue Version, or Pokémon Yellow Version: Special Pikachu Edition.
All in celebration of the series' 20th anniversary (as Pokémon Red and Green originally launched on the Game Boy in Japan on 27th February, 1996!), the bundles will also come with 15 sheets of stickers which can be used to jazz up your console, and a download code for a new HOME Menu theme.
For those of you who want to get hold of just the games themselves, they'll also be available to download from the Nintendo eShop from 27th February, although pricing has yet to be confirmed.
On the slightly newer game front, Pokémon beat-'em-up Pokkén Tournament is now scheduled for a European release on the Wii U some time this "spring". A side-on, Pokemon vs Pokemon fighting game in the manner of Tekken, this ditches the turn based battles in favour of a button mashing brawl in a fight to the finish. Fingers crossed there'll be a decent story/single player mode to go alongside the multiplayer fun.
Next up, two new sets of Pokémon-themed cover plates for the New Nintendo 3DS also arrive in February. One of them will show Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon artwork, and the other is said to have a classic Pokémon pattern. We'll be spoilt for choice of what to put on our consoles - or at least, we would be, if we had a new 3DS...
Speaking of which - as part of the 20th Anniversary celebrations, Nintendo have also confirmed the release dates for Pokémon Rumble World and Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon, which launch on the 22nd January and 19th February respectively for the Nintendo 3DS.
Pokemon Rumble World is the much anticipated proper boxed release of the "free to play" action packed Pokemon adventure, that sees a load of toy Pokemon attempting to find their way home in the only way they know how - by beating up everyone else they can see until they figure out which way to go. With 710 Pokemon to collect, and dozens of stages to complete, the Pokemon Rumble games are actually really, really good - and it'll be nice to be able to play this one without being badgered for money every few minutes.
Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon, meanwhile, is the latest in the Mystery Dungeon series, in which you get to play as a Pokémon, build a team of trusted Pokémon friends, and explore dungeons, completing quests and battling baddies as you go. If you're a poké-fan, these games are always well worth picking up - and if you purchase the game from the eShop before 17th March then you will also get a free download code for a Nintendo 3DS HOME Menu featuring Charizard, Pikachu and Bulbasaur!
If you're into Pokemon beyond the games (and let's face it - if you're a Poké-fan, your love probably doesn't end when your 3DS battery dies), there's more good news on the animated front too. Promising a "program of promotional stunts", 2016 will see Pokemon films being shown on TV by "broadcasting partners across Europe", with the films subsequently becoming available on video on demand services like Google Play, iTunes and Amazon. Things will kick off in a pretty special way with a digital remaster of Pokémon: The First Movie, and it's sequel, Pokémon: The Movie 2000
That's all for now, but with this being the 20th anniversary and all, we'd be surprised if this was the only Pokémon related news we have coming our way this year... The next proper instalment in the Pokémon series can't be too far away - and then there's the mobile augmented reality game Pokémon Go! on the horizon too. The excitement is real, and we can't wait to get stuck into the pixelated past of Pokémon Red/Blue/Yellow!