Earlier today, during a special Pokemon press conference in Tokyo, Nintendo and Game Freak officially unveiled the first set of Pokémon games coming to the Nintendo Switch! These are the long-rumored games titled Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee!
As many have speculated, these are going to be essentially remakes of the original Pokémon games, Pokémon Red and Blue (or Green if you lived in Japan.) They will be focused on the original 150 Pokémon which seems to be a fairly logical decision. It will be a far simpler task for the developers to only have 150 Pokémon to concern their selves with to animate and design to levels truly deserving of the Switch than it would be to program 800+ Pokémon into the game. Players will get to explore familiar territory as these are going to be set in the classic region of Kanto.
While these appear to be remakes of the original games, it would appear that these are more directly inspired by Pokémon Yellow than with the basic versions of the games with stories revolving around Pikachu and Eevee, although the protagonist appears to be more similar to Red than to Ash (or Satoshi in the original Japanese version.) You can also choose to be a girl if you so desire!
Where things get interesting is Gamefreak and Niantic have collaborated heavily on these titles to combine the style of experience you could expect from both the mainline franchise and the Pokémon Go gameplay in an unexpected way. Now, instead of battling wild Pokémon to whittle down their HP before selecting a pokeball from the menu to be thrown automatically, you will simply be given the option to throw a ball Pokémon-Go style. A ring will appear around the target Pokémon, and you will throw a ball by making the physical motions with the Joy-Con. This is a change that will surely come to the chagrin of many returning players, but it was a decision made with a reason by the developers.
“With the launch of Pokémon GO in 2016 and the global sensation that ensued, millions of new players were introduced to the world of Pokémon,” said Junichi Masuda, director at GAME FREAK inc. “For many people, Pokémon GO was their first experience with the Pokémon brand, so we have crafted these two new titles to be an accessible entry point to our core RPG series while giving our longtime fans a new way to play Pokémon.”
The changes don’t stop there. For countless years, many fans have been requesting that Pokémon could be encountered directly on the map. Well, as you can see above, that is absolutely the case now! No more relying on pure luck or chaining mechanics to find that certain ‘mon you have been seeking. But, there is one even bigger change that is coming with this title: true local co-op!
By simply shaking a second Joy-Con (yes, this game can be played with a single Joy-Con), a second player will drop into your world! From the trailer, it does not appear that this person comes with their own team from a separate save file but is rather just an extra avatar who can utilize the Pokémon off your team to battle or help you capture wild Pokémon as illustrated in the image above!
When this game comes out, a new controller will come out with it. This is the Pokeball Plus controller! As stated on Nintendo’s website, “The Poké Ball Plus features motion controls, lights up with a variety of colors, vibrates, and plays sounds. When catching a Pokémon in the Nintendo Switch games, players will be able to feel it moving within the device.” Additionally, you can use this controller to bring your Pokémon from your game with you on your daily routine for additional perks and bonuses.
Be sure to check out the Pokémon Let’s Go trailer below!
Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee will be coming to stores on November 16th, 2018 and the Pokeball Plus controller will be released on the same day to participating retailers.
What do you think of Pokémon Let’s Go? Are you excited to revisit Kanto on the Switch? Are some of the changes being made to the game a little too much for your tastes or are they exactly what the franchise needed to reinvigorate it? Let us know what you think in the comments below!