While Pokemon has branched off into many different genres of video games over the years, there’s no denying that the handheld adventure has long been its traditional genre. It would be fair to say that about eighty percent of Pokemon games have followed the age old formula that started with Red, Blue, and Yellow, with some minor tweaks and variations along the way.
That being said, with Pokemon games coming out at a slower pace than they used to in the old days, each individual installment has a bit more of an impact, and it is more noticeable when a game deviates from the aforementioned norm. We are of course talking about Pokemon Let’s Go, which was technically the first Pokemon game for the Nintendo Switch. In a way it was a remake of the original Blue and Yellow, but the game mechanics were a far cry from the traditional Pokemon formula. Not that the game was bad of course, but the deviation from classic mechanics was noticeable and a little strange for the first Switch Pokemon game.
With that in mind, it’s been confirmed that Pokemon Sword and Shield will return to the norm most players have come to expect. Not only will it be the first Pokemon title on Switch to follow the traditional feel of the games, but it will even go out of its way to focus more on the Switch’s handheld capabilities over its other features.
For many fans a return to classic mechanics will be smiled upon, since these mechanics are by far what made the Pokemon game franchise so popular in the first place. But it would be a little disappointing for Nintendo to pass on the unique ways in which the Switch could be used. The vast majority of handheld Pokemon games have always relied on a set control scheme that couldn’t really be modified. And while this makes sense in the old Gameboy days where options were severely limited, the Nintendo Switch has a lot more to work with, like the Joy-Con. And of course, there is the Switch’s ability to be used in conjunction with a television. Even though Sword and Shield will focus more on the handheld potential, it would be nice to see it remember these other features as well.
Ultimately, there’s no doubt that the game will be successful; it’s Pokemon, after all. It would have to do its job pretty poorly to really ruin the game for players. Even so, with it being the first ‘real’ Pokemon game on the Switch, it will still have some high expectations to meet. It’s essentially the vanguard of the next several generations of Pokemon games, showing players how said games will utilize the abilities of Nintendo’s newest device to bring new flair and excitement into the Pokemon universe. That said, following the classic formula is always a good idea, but players both old and new will of course be looking for some unique new additions.
Pokemon Sword and Shield Release Date
Per the Pokemon website, Pokemon Sword and Shield will be available late 2019.