Pokemon Sword/Shield (Switch)



  • @bard91

    I mean, it pretty much looks the same - which has me skeptical, but maybe there are some covert new features we don't know about. The dream "next step" for me would be for Pokemon to finally dive into true RPG territory and offer side missions with worthwhile stories, reward you for exploring (whether that is a good story payoff, unique pokemon, unique items, etc), and serious differences in gameplay from trainer to trainer.

    Also, they need to fully animate. It is 2019, there is no excuse to cut corners on a full console RPG release. No other game is allowed to do this but Pokemon has such cheap animation these days. There is no sense in having a 3D Pokemon world and 3D battle arenas if they are going to provide rudimentary animations or choose to not animate at all. These Pokemon should have cool attack animations and FX. Let's Go skipped animating at all in some cutscenes and in battles, moves like Double Kick were "animated" by lifting the Pokemon up then down twice. It was pretty cheap looking. I'm hoping Sword and Shield smooth these things out. Hard to tell from the trailer.

    From what we saw, there is a new region with a similar art style. The animations look somewhat similar to Let's Go, but hard to fully tell. At least the town we saw looked layered and interesting. Maybe there is a lot to uncover with time. I'll be hopeful.


  • Global Moderator

    I kinda agree. I think it looks fine and right now I can see myself picking it up but it's massively dependant on reviews. If this game is as strict and linear as Sun/Moon, I don't see myself picking it up.

    And if I do pick it up, Bloodborne has thought me never to get a shield, so I know what I'm getting.



  • @dipset completely agree with you, that has always been my gripe with Pokemon games, in just how low effort they have been, specially when you consider the obscene amount of resources Game Freak and the Pokemon Company should have to make something much better.



  • @bard91 That is generally my point of contention.
    With the fucking absurd amount of money Pokémon pulls in, each new entry always seems to be so incredibly low effort compared to it's contemporaries.

    Really this trailer just had me wanting to go finish Digimon Cyber Slueth.



  • Can't wait, I'm goings media blackout.



  • This is my current theory on the logo : the wolves are a reference to Skoll and Hati from the Nordic mythology "are two wolves who are only mentioned in passing references that have to do with their pursuing Sol and Mani, the sun and moon, through the sky in hopes of devouring them", is would be cool tie in with Sun and Moon.



  • UK rumors were true, so what else has potentially leaked that will start trickling out? Sure to be lots of fakes as there already have been such as Pokemon King / Queen and Pokemon Crown / Sceptre, so it hints that some people have insider information but many more are creating extra false stuff around that. Expect lots of fake starter evolutions, possibly fakes around the evil team this time, etc.

    No Let's Go features shown, which makes sense as those games were probably in development at the same time as this, so this is a different development team. Very happy there's no overworld spawning. Battle animations seem like the usual. Nothing too special here apparent yet, but GameFreak is also still trying to learn the Switch and HD games from a technical standpoint, so I think they played this one safe to ensure a smooth framerate.

    While this game did receive an additional year of development compared to most Pokemon games, it is still only a three year cycle versus the usual two, so of course this game isn't as ambitious as something like Breath of the Wild with over a five year cycle. They'll probably go SuMo wild with the hardware closer to the tail end of the Switch's lifespan, but releasing frequently keeps the franchise going, so there's only so much they can do with the mainline. The bottleneck is time, not money. Don't forget these games also have to tie in with an anime, a TCG, tons of merch, etc.

    Extremely heavy sports theme for these games. Lots of stadiums on the region map which also appear to work as gyms with the first being shown to be Grass Type. Cheering sound effects used during the Direct. Starters are the sports fan Grookey, the athlete Scorbunny, and possibly the referee or the official with Sobble? Of course we also have the shot of the protagonist walking out into a stadium dressed in sports gear, so clearly there's an element there beyond just sports stadiums being used as Gyms.

    The logos for these games seem particularly bad and ugly, even the Japanese ones strangely enough. Hopefully not a reflection of the quality of the games themselves. Expect one legendary to be sleek and the other to be bulky when we finally see them.

    We usually don't get the region map this early, and it seems strangely mostly unobscured, unless there's more behind the mountains in the back or a second region, which is even less likely. Galar is definitely a Pokemon region name. The region seems super linear at first glance, but it is possible we will revisit locations or have lots of optional routes to explore on the sides of the main path up. More likely though, I predict the focus this time will be on location interiors, probably to help the Switch technically have less loaded at once and allow them to use more detail, so this will expand the scope of the map considerably. We clearly can see train tracks through most the region, so also expect the train to be more than just a fast travel from one place to the next. We'll be battling through those cars.

    Masuda producing and Ohmori directing means we're probably getting an average game. Ohmori directed ORAS and SuMo, but this game is giving me more XY vibes with maybe a smidge of BW in there, but that could just be all the urban environments. Either way it suggests Masuda having a large influence over the game during development. Ohmori specifically mentions challenging themselves to try new things, despite us seeing very little that screams new in the Direct itself, which suggests there's much more left to see. Obviously whatever is going on with the sports theme and stadiums will be part of it, but don't forget the games are called Sword and Shield, which seems to clash with that Sports theme and suggest a presence of less jovial conflict.

    As for excitement level, I'm a little immediately relieved, because I think there's something here for me. Just looking over the region map, it seems like there will be optional things to explore instead of just a guided tour where everyone walks the same path. Keeping Let's Go features to that side series is also a relief as many of those new features desperately need refinement before working their way into the mainline series. I was super nervous for the reveal of these games today, so right now I'm at least happy I don't hate what they've shown us, even if it doesn't blow me away either.

    The starters really don't tickle me like past Generations have from first impressions, but Sobble seems decent. I say only decent, because Kecleon already did the chameleon thing, so it feels like retreaded territory, but I do like salamanders. Scorbunny could be great too depending on where the evolutions take them, but sports aren't my thing, so I'm not expecting much from them. Start taking bets on which one becomes a waifumon.

    I don't care for the new protagonists. I'm not immediately charmed like I was by the SuMo and Let's Go ones. This probably won't be a problem, because I imagine the anime will opt to use the Gym Leaders or other characters over what has more and more as time has gone on simply become player avatars. Clearly clothing customization is back though, and I actually think this looks a tad nicer than it has in the past. No sign of rivals or evil teams yet. Naturally I wonder if those will be related to the sports stadiums with rival teams and a team who plays dirty.

    Last thought, we never see Pokemon Amie or anything similar to that in this trailer, and that's probably just because it will be very similar to what was in XY and SuMo, but I also worry just a little it might be removed and instead become an exclusive feature to the Let's Go series. I worry they'll start piecemealing Pokemon out like this, where only Let's Go gets following Pokemon and Ride Pokemon with a heavier focus on the bond while the main series becomes more about the story, new places, and new trainers, and battling. That's probably just me worrying too much though. Trailer doesn't show any sort of multiplayer battling or trading functionality either, but all that is more likely due to it just being a first tease of the games. More will come later.



  • Youtube Video

    Just going to add to what they say in the video that the logo for Pokemon Shield has spikes on it, and this giant has spikes on it.



  • I thought the game looked pretty good, kinda what I expected. The only thing I was let down by is when they show the player get in a random encounter, you didn't see the pokemon, you just jumped into combat. Easily for me one of the best aspects of Let's Go Pikachu was being able to see the pokemon before engaging them. I hope they add that to this game, it's so nice being able to control when you want to fight/capture and what you want to fight/capture.



  • @mbun 3 years is plenty of time to make a bigger game



  • @iboshow 3 years, while learning new hardware, while making your first HD games. We don't even know definitively yet that this isn't a big game. It just isn't like games that take 5-10 years to make, which is what disappointed people are comparing it to.



  • I'll agree that the learning curve with HD was huge. Working in TV, people have told me the nightmare that ensued around 2007ish because of that. But with that said, despite Nintendo being a solid 10 years late to that party (something Eurogamer has interviewed Nintendo about before), Nintendo did in fact get there eventually in terms of HD development and pipeline.

    I don't think "learning HD" or learning new hardware really flies as a learning curve unless internal processes just don't get shared with GameFreak.



  • @dipset Kirby team also struggled with it in the transition to Star Allies. All those franchises where the teams have only ever made handheld games with tiny resolutions on DS and 3DS are going to run into it despite affiliation with Nintendo if they've only ever worked on projects where it wasn't an issue then have to transition to ones where it is. That and GameFreak definitely does things sufficiently separately from Nintendo.



  • I guess so. It just sounds entirely inefficient to me. Surely there is a producer out there who can bridge the gap.

    For example, Guerrilla made Decima engine and it was used across multiple studios first and third party all within 5 years of its creation. Somebody was a liaison there.



  • Yeah, nah.
    I'm sorry but the argument that they are "learning new hardware" is fucking stupid. Gamefreak are a massive company and I am sure they could hire some new talent that are already familiar with Switch hardware (which considering the Switch is just a rebranded Nvidia Shield really shouldn't be that hard) but then again this is a Nintendo related company, and I've already aired my frustrations about Nintendo's insanely archaic, outright baffling stupid design decisions when it comes to internal development.



  • @el-shmiablo Yeah, let's just fire all the current employees and hire all new people to handle everything, then complain when the game gets inevitably leaked by people with no history at the company and turns out trash because they aren't passionate about their jobs either. Why would you even suggest this?



  • @mbun I... didn't suggest anything you just said.
    If hiring competent employees and achieving a much more efficient workflow means the occasional leak, I think I'll survive.



  • @el-shmiablo said:

    I... didn't suggest anything you just said.

    You kind of did. Instead of actively training old employees in new skills on a game or two you want them to just replace them with new hires to do the job for them, which leaves those old employees with nothing to do but sit on their hands. GameFreak releases a Pokemon game almost every year, so I'd say their workflow is just fine. They have two big teams that alternate games so they have two years to develop them instead of just one, then smaller teams that work on side projects that aren't mainline Pokemon. This is like a one time hurdle thing, so I'm not even sure why people are so upset about it. It isn't even like that games look that bad given what the Switch has to work with. They're just not visually similar to games that have been in development for half a decade or more, which of course they aren't.



  • @mbun Actually, I didn't.
    Like I have said, Nintendo and many of it's subsidiaries have incredibly archaic internal design processes. They certainly could train their employees to handle these new tasks, but history (and present) shows that they are unwilling to do so, and so hiring capable talent seems like a much better avenue to take, but I highly doubt that either of these options is going to happen.

    It is almost unfortunate that Nintendo has seen such monumental success, as it means they stick to their guns, even if it ends up hurting the final product.

    Before you try to twist my words (again) I would like to say that I love Nintendo and think they have made and continue to make some of the best games in the industry, but that does not mean there aren't a lot of frustrations with other aspects of the company.
    (Yes I know Gamefreak is seperate from Nintendo, but there are honestly so many parallels that I may as well talk about them as the same)



  • @el-shmiablo said:

    They certainly could train their employees to handle these new tasks

    And they are.

    history (and present) shows that they are unwilling to do so

    But they are, unless you mean "ahead of time" in which case there's no time to do so, because they're constantly working on a new game, so they have to do both at once. The only thing they could do is establish a third main team to give another team a year off sometimes to train in new tech, but there's really no need to with how infrequently this stuff comes up. Just let them learn while doing. History shows it eventually pays off, although I think the 3DS hardware got stretched a little thin for SuMo, and I do worry the same could happen on the Switch, so I hope they figure out ways around that.