-->

– by Brendan Hughes

There has been very little information released about the 8th generation of Pokémon but that seems to be quickly changing. The Mexican edition of Nintendo magazine has announced the next Pokémon game, developed for the Nintendo Switch, will have new elements in gameplay. With this new information, it is possible to speculate on the various ways the franchise can go from here. This brief snippet, only roughly 40 words, leads to the number of new creatures, region, and new mechanics.

“After a lifetime associated with portable consoles, the canonical Pokémon will take the leap to a table with its eighth generation. Game Freak and The Pokémon Company are rethinking the saga to surprise with new mechanics, either in 2018 or later.”

The phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” is quite applicable in this magazine as the image used above the description is the cover of Pikachu from the cover of Pokémon Yellow. This is likely to be one of the first clues on piecing together Pokémon Switch as the region is the most important part of each Pokémon game. With a new game, one would expect to explore a new region as journeying through a region is usually reserved for remakes which changes the story in fashions like time skips. However, reading into this cover of Pokémon Yellow may point us back to Pallet Town and the whole Kanto region. Using a region already created does make sense given that at the latest Pokémon Switch started to be conceived with the reported Pokémon Stars game for the console. Though Stars, supposedly, turned out to be a demo of the Switch’s capacity to handle a Pokémon game it opened a door for the next release.

Will there be any new Pokémon for the Switch? Like all other questions about this game, there is still no concrete evidence for an answer in either direction. Pokémon Switch can likely be viewed in the same fashion of X and Y given that both games were developed for new systems and changed the franchise forever. X and Y was the first game that introduced 3D gameplay, and 3D modeled cel-shaded models resulting in only 72 new Pokémon–the lowest total in any generation. With all Pokémon receiving another upgrade in appearance the number of new creatures is likely to be less especially in a region previously explored. Though it is easy to rule out any new monsters, Game Freak will likely add new versions of preexisting Pokémon via regional variants or mega evolutions. Adding, at least, new starters would be a welcome sight and shake up a region if already experienced.

RELATED – Pokémon: Did Images OF These Pokémon Switch Starters Leak?

However, for this new generation of games, it will need a new region for it to be truly considered a new generation. Reboots fall under generations of core Pokémon games with remakes falling in their generation. An example of this is generation three revolved around Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald exploring Hoenn with generation one remake Fire Red, and Leaf Green being grouped in this category. This leaves some hope for a new region to explore and new Pokémon to collect. This will likely push back the release date as there needs to be time to fully develop a region from character models, story, and “new mechanics” the game reveals.

The Nintendo article makes a point to detail the new mechanics of the game without providing any more information. What are we likely to see in the way of new changes to the franchise? With the game coming out on the Switch it is unlikely not to use the motion controls that Nintendo consoles have become known for. This motion is likely to be a new way to capture Pokémon in a fashion akin to Niantic’s mobile game Pokémon Go with throwing motion granting a higher capture rate. Another possible mechanic is the game following the Breath of the Wild route becoming an MMORPG style game, which would hopefully bring back the walking Pokémon, exploring the region in a brand-new style.

To this point, it has been hard deciphering details about the next Pokémon games as there has been no official words from either Nintendo Directs or Coro Coro. The amount of speculations has been widespread with likely false information being taken for a fact from unverified Twitter sources. The most obvious account of this is the leaks of the potential starters detailing a water type platypus, grass type lemur, and fire type rabbit. Until official information is released there is a need to stay vigilant in deciphering fact from fiction. Official information is not likely to occur until Nintendo and Game Freak feel comfortable with a set timetable. The set timetable from the recent Mexican Nintendo magazine is “2018 or later” which is an extremely broad release date.

If the game is going to be released later this year the time for an official announcement is drawing to a close. Previous games are usually announced prior to E3 allowing for the game to gradually gather hype up to its release. Pokémon games have never been announced during E3 though there is likely to be announcements if previously announced. The best chance for an indication of a new generation might come later this month or early May when merchandise for Movie 21 is announced. If this does not happen the game is highly unlikely to release this year and might be released in 2019–at the earliest. With the time needed for development of a groundbreaking game like this is likely a few years which given the speculated start of development in 2016 points at 2019.

Is Pokémon Switch gearing up for a massive announcement later in the month after being announced in the Mexican edition of Nintendo magazine? The best chance of any slight hint of a new region might come when Movie 21 merchandise is released in the next few weeks. The magazine promised, “new mechanics” which could signify that the upcoming game will be a landmark release in the franchise.

What are you hoping for in the 8th generation of Pokémon? Let us know your thoughts down below!

Don’t forget to share this post on your Facebook wall and with your Twitter followers! Just hit the buttons on the top of this page.

SOURCE: Nintendo Magazine (via raqueruu)