At E3 2017, Nintendo made a big announcement: a major Pokémon game is coming to the Switch. A brief discussion about Pokkén Tournament DX coming to the console abruptly turned into the announcement of a mainline Pokémon RPG, which sparked excitement in nerds around the world. Even though the release date for the new Pokémon game isn't set until the second half of 2019, fans have been dying to learn more about the upcoming game.
What is the next Pokémon going to be? Although little information has been given to the public about the upcoming RPG, since the birth of Nintendo's handheld/home console hybrid, gamers have known that the platform presents a new realm of opportunities for the Pokémon franchise to conquer. The device's ability to connect to external toys and devices only fires up the anticipation for an all-new Pokémon Switch 2019 title.
Catching Pokémon In The Companion Games Will Be Interactive With The Poké Ball Plus
While catching Pokémon in the original Game Boy RPGs, it did get a little tedious having to battle wild Pokémon until they were on the brink of fainting. Like Pokémon Go, the two new Switch titles, Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! will feature a much simpler capture method.
Players do not have to wittle down a Pokémon's HP in order to capture them. Instead, gamers can tilt the Joy-Con roller at the screen to fling the Poké Ball at the intended target. Nintendo is also introducing Poké Ball Plus, a handheld device that resembles a Poké Ball but functions as a controller. The Poké Ball Plus can be used for every aspect of the game, including exploring or fighting other trainers.
Two Companion Games, 'Let's Go Pikachu!' And 'Let's Go Eevee!' Have A November 16, 2018, Release Date
After various leaks and rumors, The Pokémon Company released the titles for two companion RPGs: Let's Go Pikachu! and Let's Go Eevee! These are not the core Pokémon RPG the company had previously announced for the Nintendo Switch. The Let's Go games were developed by Game Freak and are considered mainline Pokémon RPGs. According to director and producer Junichi Masuda, the games are made with newcomers to the Pokémon world in mind.
There are some aspects those more familiar with Pokémon will enjoy. The games bring the users back to the Kanto region, which is where the original games are set. Masuda also describes the games as something of a "remake" of 1999's Pokémon Yellow. Masuda told Polygon:
Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee! are kind of inspired and based on Pokémon Yellow version. They had added elements from the animated series, like Team Rocket and the characters that appeared in the animated series. It’s one of those things that made it resonate more with young kids at the time. When we were thinking of a game to go back to... we thought that this would be the next version.
The Anticipated Game Was First Rumored To Be 'Pokémon Stars'
Around the time that Pokémon Sun and Moon were being developed, rumors abounded of a third skew, which would be titled Pokémon Stars. Gaming media outlet Eurogamer made the report that Pokémon Stars would be an expansion of the two 3DS games, similarly to how Pokémon Crystal expanded upon Gold and Silver.
However, those rumors never came true, and fans were instead presented with Pokémon Ultra Sun & Moon. Perhaps Pokémon Stars never existed, or was scrapped in favor of the more incremental releases, but many are hoping that a definitive version of the Generation VII games is headed to the Switch.
Large-Scale Multiplayer Is A Possibility
Since the days of the link cable, multiplayer Pokémon battles have been a key aspect of the series. Considering the explosive popularity of 2016's Pokémon GO, it makes sense that The Pokémon Company's CEO, Tsunekazu Ishihara, is toying with the concept of incorporating augmented reality or smart phone connectivity into the upcoming Pokémon Switch game.
Ishihara believes that we've reached an age in gaming where people can "go home and play with everyone," and is trying to figure out the best ways to expand upon the multiplayer aspects of the franchise. Since the Nintendo Switch does not have the "Street Pass" feature that allows 3DS players to battle strangers in their surrounding area, a phone app would be a great way to help players connect in the real world. Additionally, a home console Pokémon RPG could facilitate local multiplayer much better than any handheld release.