Remember when Nintendo announced (via one of its Directs) that the next ‘big’ title in its Pokemon arsenal would be Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Let’s Go Eevee!? I admit, I was initially a little worried that it meant Nintendo was shying away from their traditional Pokemon RPG formula.
Well, if you’re like me, you not only breathed a sigh of relief, but perhaps exclaimed in delight when Nintendo kicked off Pokemon Day with an announcement towards the next installment in the storied Pokemon saga:
Pokemon Sword and Shield will be coming to the Nintendo Switch later this year!
Now, a few things: after Pokemon X/Y were geographically based on the sunny plains of France, and Sun/Moon introduced us to the Alolan region (Hawaii), we’re being whisked away with Sword/Shield to the English-inspired countryside of the Galar region. Hey, if a London-esque city complete with Big Ben doesn’t do it for you, I don’t know what will.
Fans of the popular HBO series Game of Thrones will notice a ‘wall’ of sorts near the frozen tundra of the north – of course, the Wall in GoT is inspired by the real-life Hadrian’s Wall, which is located (surprise!) in England, so don’t be too surprised to see Westeros and Galar share more than a few other similarities as well.
Some core changes are returning as well: the trailer seemed to showcase wild Pokemon encounters in tall grass and other areas, as well as Gyms (you can see the circular-arenas both in the trailer and in the Galar map seen above).
As is tradition, Trainers are also getting three new starters to choose from, and the race to pick a favourite is on already:
It looks like this fulfills the tradtional Grass/Fire/Water archetypes of our youth, though there will be much speculation about what secondary types they take on as they evolve. Maybe Scorbunny is Fire/Electric? Grookey could be Grass/Ground, perhaps? I can’t even speculate on Sobble as far as types go, but he (or she) is going to be my Day One starter, that’s for sure. #TeamSobble
There also seems to be a potential Legendary sneak peek, for some eagle-eyed viewers of the Nintendo Direct:
Very King Arthur-esque, if you ask me (the king buried under the hill who will return some day) – it even looks like it has a crown of some sort. That or its the burial grounds for a giant depending on which lore you subscribe too. I’m not going to judge either way.
As more details are released on Pokemon Sword/Shield, we’ll endeavour to bring them to you as soon as possible. As a member of the real-life Commonwealth myself, I’m just hoping the final Champion of the Galar Pokemon League is the Queen.
Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield arrived exclusively for Nintendo Switch in late 2019.
You can find Sho on Twitter (@SNSAlli) for more thoughts on video games, sports, and more.