Pokemon Sword and Shield News and Discussion Thread

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Light Lucario

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I'd be pretty happy if they eventually patched up the games to include the other Pokemon too. Part of the reason why they're still undecided could be they have to factor in how long those patches could take and if that would impact development on future titles too. Plus, we still don't know how many Pokemon are going to be in the Galar Pokedex. I've seen people make exaggerated comments as if they know how many Pokemon are going to featured in the game. It could be a larger or smaller amount than we're expecting and that could be a factor for their decision too, especially when they'd have to include Dynamax forms for the Pokemon too.

They obviously can't delay Sword/Shield now to include every Pokemon, but it is possible that they'll factor this issue in with future titles. Maybe they can have more time to work on the games so that including every Pokemon won't be as time consuming. I might be just too hopeful or giving Game Freak too much credit, but I'd prefer to be optimistic whenever possible.
 

Commander Beeper

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I did some math. I feel like Mega Evolutions, purely cosmetic form differences (such as Unown and Shellos), and form changes triggered by Abilities (such as Castform) or held items (such as Giratina) wouldn't count toward this, so the total Pokemon before Sword and Shield, including separate forms barring the aforementioned criteria, is 862.

Now one question remains - how many of the Pokemon introduced in Sword and Shield are new Pokemon, and how many are new forms?
To clarify: THESE are the alternate forms I've counted in this figure:
  • Deoxys Attack
  • Deoxys Defense
  • Deoxys Speed
  • Sandy Wormadam
  • Trash Wormadam
  • Heat Rotom
  • Wash Rotom
  • Frost Rotom
  • Fan Rotom
  • Mow Rotom
  • Sky Shaymin
  • Blue-Striped Basculin
  • Therian Tornadus
  • Therian Landorus
  • Therian Thundurus
  • White Kyurem
  • Black Kyurem
  • Pirouette Meloetta
  • Ash-Greninja
  • Average Pumpkaboo
  • Large Pumpkaboo
  • Super Pumpkaboo
  • Average Gourgeist
  • Large Gourgeist
  • Super Gourgeist
  • Zygarde 10%
  • Zygarde Complete
  • Hoopa Unbound
  • Pom-Pom Oricorio
  • Pa'u Oricorio
  • Sunsu Oricorio
  • Midnight Lycanroc
  • Dusk Lycanroc
  • Dusk Mane Necrozma
  • Dawn Wings Necrozma
  • Alolan Rattata
  • Alolan Raticate
  • Alolan Raichu
  • Alolan Sandshrew
  • Alolan Sandslash
  • Alolan Vulpix
  • Alolan Ninetales
  • Alolan Diglett
  • Alolan Dugtrio
  • Alolan Meowth
  • Alolan Persian
  • Alolan Geodude
  • Alolan Graveler
  • Alolan Golem
  • Alolan Grimer
  • Alolan Muk
  • Alolan Exeggutor
  • Alolan Marowak
 

Terror of Death

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Those interviews with Junichi Masuda and Masayuki Onue told people everything they need to know about this company. Game Freak continues to expose themseleves as greedy and incompetent at every turn. The decisions and excuses they make are utterly embarrassing for a developer that's been in the business for decades and is so financially successful.

They claim Sword and Shield have higher quality animations and fidelity but the monster designs and attacks have barely changed between the 3ds and switch games. The mainline Pokemon games have never taken full advantage of their systems hardware in terms of graphics and audio and it's even more apparent now that they're on an actual home console instead of exclusively handheld ones. Sword and Shield look and sound like something that would be on a system over a decade ago. There’s no voice acting, photo-realism, fur or scale textures, environments that are busy, destructible, or react to touch, dozens of characters filling the screen, or fluid and complicated looking movements. Including any of the above would be childs play to many mid-sized or major develops let alone having over a 1000 Pokemon in one game. Game Freak have gotten away with doing the bare minimum for so long they have to be dragged kicking and screaming whenever it comes to implementing any modern gaming feature. Hailing a moveable camera as such a unique feature in a 2019 game is cringeworthy.

Wanting to make the games balanced is just a cover. Gamers know most rpgs aren't like fighting games or shooters where the number of characters and classes have to be kept relatively small to prevent too many from becoming obsolete. The Pokemon games have never been perfectly balanced where you could use any makeshift team and expect to have a chance in winning multiplayer matches. As long most Pokemon are viable in single player through leveling or a halfway decent move set most people don’t expect Game Freak to create miracles when it comes to online play. If they truly wanted every Pokemon to shine it shouldn’t be rocket science to create three difficulty levels and tiers based on stats, levels, evolution lines, or type. The real reason they want to limit the number of Pokemon is because their thinking of saving some for the inevitable sword and shield sequels, DP remakes or Johto lets go games.

The time constraint issue is probably the worst excuse of them all. Nintendo routinely allows their develops to push back release dates and even recently let the metroid prime 4 team completely start production over from scratch. By Game Freaks own admission the Pokemon games are currently their second priority despite it being the franchise that makes them the most money. Instead of having all hands on deck they split up the team to also work on Giga Wrecker Alt and Town. Two games that probably won’t make a fraction of what the lowest selling mainline Pokemon game made. If the November deadline is too much for them they could have asked for an extension, hired a codeveloper to help them or placed their non Pokemon properties lower on the priority list.

I’m hoping Sword and Shield get review bombed and end up selling lower than the lets go games did. Unfortunately there’s a large portion of the Pokemon fanbase similar to the Call of Duty, Assassin's Creed, and the 2K sports fanbase that will support any yearly release regardless of the actual quality. Some of them appear to be finally waking up though.


 
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Commander Beeper

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Those interviews with Junichi Masuda and Masayuki Onue told people everything they need to know about this company. Game Freak continues to expose themseleves as greedy and incompetent at every turn. The decisions and excuses they make are utterly embarrassing for a developer that's been in the business for decades and is so financially successful.

They claim Sword and Shield have higher quality animations and fidelity but the monster designs and attacks have barely changed between the 3ds and switch games. The mainline Pokemon games have never taken full advantage of their systems hardware in terms of graphics and audio and it's even more apparent now that they're on an actual home console instead of exclusively handheld ones. Sword and Shield look and sound like something that would be on a system over a decade ago. There’s no voice acting, photo-realism, fur or scale textures, environments that are busy, destructible, or react to touch, dozens of characters filling the screen, or fluid and complicated looking movements. Including any of the above would be childs play to many mid-sized or major develops let alone having over a 1000 Pokemon in one game. Game Freak have gotten away with doing the bare minimum for so long they have to be dragged kicking and screaming whenever it comes to implementing any modern gaming feature. Hailing a moveable camera as such a unique feature in a 2019 game is cringeworthy.

Wanting to make the games balanced is just a cover. Gamers know most rpgs aren't like fighting games or shooters where the number of characters and classes have to be kept relatively small to prevent too many from becoming obsolete. The Pokemon games have never been perfectly balanced where you could use any makeshift team and expect to have a chance in winning multiplayer matches. As long most Pokemon are viable in single player through leveling or a halfway decent move set most people don’t expect Game Freak to create miracles when it comes to online play. If they truly wanted every Pokemon to shine it shouldn’t be rocket science to create three difficulty levels and tiers based on stats, levels, evolution lines, or type. The real reason they want to limit the number of Pokemon is because their thinking of saving some for the inevitable sword and shield sequels, DP remakes or Johto lets go games.

The time constraint issue is probably the worst excuse of them all. Nintendo routinely allows their develops to push back release dates and even recently let the metroid prime 4 team completely start production over from scratch. By Game Freaks own admission the Pokemon games are currently their second priority despite it being the franchise that makes them the most money. Instead of having all hands on deck they split up the team to also work on Giga Wrecker Alt and Town. Two games that probably won’t make a fraction of what the lowest selling mainline Pokemon game made. If the November deadline is too much for them they could have asked for an extension, hired a codeveloper to help them or placed their non Pokemon properties lower on the priority list.

I’m hoping Sword and Shield get review bombed and end up selling lower than the lets go games did. Unfortunately there’s a large portion of the Pokemon fanbase similar to the Call of Duty, Assassin's Creed, and the 2K sports fanbase that will support any yearly release regardless of the actual quality. Some of them appear to be finally waking up though.


Geez, you are just as bad as Genwunners right now. Hoping the games get review-bombed and sell poorly? That is going TOO FAR, mister.
 

Light Lucario

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It is getting close to where I think that the backlash to non-Galar Pokedex Pokemon not being transferable is worse than the issue itself. Admittedly, hoping for the games to get review bombed and sell poorly isn't the worst kind of comment I've seen on this issue. It isn't as bad as people who cuss at the developers or send them death threats.

The backlash doesn't make me think that some fans are finally waking up so much as fans can be extremely entitled. That isn't really new this or any fanbase, but that comes to mind more so than blaming Game Freak here. I don't blame people for being upset to a degree, but I also think that some of the negativity and anger seems pretty excessive. Even if I used the transfer feature more often, I don't think that having some Pokemon not being transferable would turn me off from Sword/Shield completely. The scenery looks gorgeous, pretty much all of the new Pokemon are great, the new human characters are cool, Dynamax looks pretty cool and Max Raid Battles sound awesome. I'd be more disappointed and possibly upset if I did transfer my Pokemon more often, but I don't think that would make me sell my Switch and not pick up the games completely.

I don't think that the complaints are going to have a drastic impact on Sword/Shield's sales. I don't think that the people upset about this issue are in the minority or even a vocal minority, but I don't know how many long time fans would be upset enough to not buy the games over this. Not to mention some may not really care. For a lot of people, especially the general audience, it's the first new generation on the Switch and the first on a Nintendo console system to boot. Being able to play a brand new Pokemon journey on your TV is a major selling point in itself and I don't think that the transfer issue would be enough to negate or downplay that. The Let's Go games also sold pretty well for themselves. They weren't huge hits, but I'm pretty sure they sold as much as most of the other remakes tend to do and they were among the top selling Switch titles of last year as well.

I do hope that they'll decide on patching in any non-Galar Pokedex Pokemon in the future, but mainly so that people can hopefully calm down and there can be more excitement for the games rather than this bit of controversy. Regardless, I'm going to buy them not because I don't care about quality, but because the game looks and sounds like a lot of fun. I'm sure I'll still have my fair share of problems with the games, but if I enjoy a video game, that can help to make up for quite a bit of its flaws and I can still appreciate the experience of playing through the storyline.
 
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ToonJay723

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The time constraint issue is probably the worst excuse of them all. Nintendo routinely allows their develops to push back release dates and even recently let the metroid prime 4 team completely start production over from scratch. By Game Freaks own admission the Pokemon games are currently their second priority despite it being the franchise that makes them the most money. Instead of having all hands on deck they split up the team to also work on Giga Wrecker Alt and Town. Two games that probably won’t make a fraction of what the lowest selling mainline Pokemon game made. If the November deadline is too much for them they could have asked for an extension, hired a codeveloper to help them or placed their non Pokemon properties lower on the priority list.
Pokemon isn't like other Nintendo games. They're not allowed to delay them, because the anime, trading card game, and other merchandise licensee's want a new region every few years. And they're also forced to make remakes which takes time and resources away from developing the new games.

Also they can't just keep putting every Pokemon in every game. One day they'll be 1,500. Game Freak can't program and balance 1,500 Pokemon in the short deadline that The Pokemon Company gives them. They saw it coming and decided that they have to make that decision now.
 
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Light Lucario

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Pokemon isn't like other Nintendo games. They're not allowed to delay them, because the anime, trading card game, and other merchandise licensee's want a new region every few years. And they're also forced to make remakes which takes time and resources away from developing the new games.
That is a big reason why a delay wasn't possible. They have to get new merchandise out every few years and they've already promoted pretty much all of the seventh generation Pokemon, especially in the anime. Maybe they could have had the seventh generation go on for another year if they needed more time to include every Pokemon in the games, but they would have had to deal with that pretty early on in the seventh generation's run. SM in particularly would have required a lot of changes to make it last for another year and I'm not sure if that could have been possible even if they asked for more time for development. They can't just start all over again like Nintendo did for Metro simply because Pokemon is a big franchise that needs to put out new material/merchandise every few years.

Fans also would not be happy with waiting longer for a new generation on the Switch. The backlash probably wouldn't be as intense as it has been for this issue, but plenty of fans would be livid if they had to wait until 2020 for an eighth generation announcement.

ToonJay723 said:
Also they can't just keep putting every Pokemon in every game. One day they'll be 1,500. Game Freak can't program and balance 1,500 Pokemon in the short deadline that The Pokemon Company gives them. They saw it coming and decided that they have to make that decision now.
According to the Famitsu interview, this idea was first brought up in Sun/Moon, so it wasn't a random or sudden decision either. In a lot of ways, doing this for Sun/Moon would have been worse. There was a backwards compatibility between the DS and 3DS and making Pokemon completely unavailable in the then newest games celebrating the franchise's 20th anniversary would have sent a strange message. Waiting until they moved to the Switch at least makes the decision more understandable than if they did this with the 3DS.

A part of me wonders if the increasing number of Pokemon combined with this backlash could lead to Game Freak getting a bit more time developing the games. The past few generations have lasted for three years and they release a new main series game nearly every year with rarely any breaks, so that could be putting too much strain on the development team. It's probably more likely that they'll just make patches for the games to include every Pokemon, which wouldn't be a bad option either. The developers can still meet their deadlines and hopefully knowing that transferring any Pokemon will eventually be possible could help calm fans down.
 

Dr.Pepper

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I’m not too bothered by the fact not every Pokémon will be included. We are getting to the point that there are so many of them, you can’t reasonably catch them all.
 

Commander Beeper

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I'm not bothered by it either, though I will admit I was taken aback by it when they said it. Just means I've gotta be careful about the Pokemon I transfer from Pokemon Bank to Pokemon Home.

On a related note, I am hoping that the following Pokemon make it in:
  • Zubat, Psyduck, and Magnemite (because they've appeared in every generation)
  • Tentacool (because it's traditionally included)
  • Ditto and Smeargle (because of their utility with breeding)
 

SNS

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Just means I've gotta be careful about the Pokemon I transfer from Pokemon Bank to Pokemon Home.
Not really. The idea isn't that some Pokémon will never appear again but that all Pokémon won't appear in the same game. So if a Pokémon doesn't appear in Sword & Shield, it could appear in generation 9 for example and you will be able to transfer it then. And the reverse could happen with a Pokémon that appeared in Sword & Shield not showing up in generation 9. The way it was explained was they would choose the Pokémon most appropriate for the region.
 

Commander Beeper

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Not really. The idea isn't that some Pokémon will never appear again but that all Pokémon won't appear in the same game. So if a Pokémon doesn't appear in Sword & Shield, it could appear in generation 9 for example and you will be able to transfer it then. And the reverse could happen with a Pokémon that appeared in Sword & Shield not showing up in generation 9. The way it was explained was they would choose the Pokémon most appropriate for the region.
Well, yeah, but until that happens, I feel like I may want to keep certain Pokemon in my Generation 7 games, so that I can still use them in a game.
 

Light Lucario

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They did mention that they would have some role in Pokemon Home even if they couldn't be transferred over to another game. This would have been good information to have before announcing the transfer issue. Most fans thought that Pokemon Home would just be another Pokemon Bank, but it sounds like it could have more features beyond just a storage for older Pokemon. That probably wouldn't have negated all of the backlash, but it might have helped reduce it if fans knew that their Pokemon wouldn't just gather dust in Pokemon Home.

It might have also helped if they said that just because some Pokemon won't be in Sword/Shield doesn't mean that they'll never show up in a Pokemon game again. A lot of fans jumped to that conclusion and that probably intensified the negativity too.
 

Terror of Death

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Pokemon isn't like other Nintendo games. They're not allowed to delay them, because the anime, trading card game, and other merchandise licensee's want a new region every few years. And they're also forced to make remakes which takes time and resources away from developing the new games.

Also they can't just keep putting every Pokemon in every game. One day they'll be 1,500. Game Freak can't program and balance 1,500 Pokemon in the short deadline that The Pokemon Company gives them. They saw it coming and decided that they have to make that decision now.
Extremely doubtful. No remakes or mainline games were released in Japan in 01, 03, 05, 07, 11, or 15. International release years don't count because that's just translation by each country's division and minor aesthetic alterations. Game Freak is one of the most successful developers in the industry and the Pokemon property overall is currently the highest grossing media franchise in history. Not releasing a new game every year hasn’t hurt them in the past and it wouldn’t hurt them if it happened again.

And assuming for a minute that they’re contractually obligated to release new games without delays, that doesn't excuse their poor decision making. They could easily pay some other developer to work on the remakes like most gaming companies do nowadays and focus their energies on the mainline games. Also, no one forced them to waste money and manpower on passion projects like Giga Wrecker and Town. The fact that they willingly prioritize the creation of those side games over Pokemon is an insult to their fanbase. They are well aware they can put out an inferior product and still churn a profit because of simple brand loyalty.

They wouldn’t have these problems if they actually spent some of those tens of millions they make on hiring some halfway decent programmers. Of course putting in over 1,000 Pokemon and balancing them is going to seem like a herculean task to a company that just now featured a moveable camera in one of their games despite having been in the business for three decades.
 
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Light Lucario

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I am surprised with just how much the Internet instantly fell in love with Wooloo. I certainly don't mind that. Wooloo is adorable and it has a cute name to boot. I just didn't expect it to become so immensely popular. I do hope that they'll have Wooloo plush toys since it seems like a perfect fit as a plush toy.
 
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Terror of Death

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Game Freak continues to be ripped apart by the fandom.:D People are making a lot of great points about GF’s easily debunked claims and poor management style.

They need to hire a public relations team. A lot of people in the gaming industry are either too direct or completely oblivious to what the fans want. While not as egregious as the Blizzard or EA statements, the responses in those interviews were completely tone-deaf. Its was obvious their statements wouldn't go over well with fans. A good pr team would alleviate consumers fears by saying they listened to feedback and will work on solutions or ensure a better product. Either that or explain to the employees what you can and can not say to avoid backlash from happening in the first place. Customers don’t like to hear excuses especially ones that are dubious at best.

They’re more concerned with quantity over quality. They claim the reverse is the reason for the lack of national dex but their business model says otherwise. Sun and Moon and Sword and Shield were actually being worked on at the same time. Then things get even worse in the following years once you add Ultra S/M, Tembo the Elephant, Giga Wrecker Alt, Pokemon Quest, Lets Go, and Pokemon Quest. If you keep splitting up an already small development team to work on multiple games at once each product is not going to receive the time and effort it deserves.

Need to spend more money. A lot of their problems could be alleviated if they simply hired more people or outsourced the development of spinoffs to a different developer. Unfortunately, their still conducting business like an indie company who tries to be as cheap as possible. Plenty of developers have shown you don’t have to use a Call of Duty sized budget to make a great looking game with multiple mechanics.

Have become too complacent. This is a major probably of a lot of successful companies. After years of being on top they begin to realize the consumer base is so loyal their product is guaranteed to make money regardless of the quality. So instead of thinking about how to innovate they start thinking about how to give the illusion of innovation. In reality they’re trying to find new ways to maximize profits and take as many shortcuts as possible. With most modern games you see this with loot boxes, microtransactions, subscription services, dlc, post release patches and charging full price for sequels that don’t add much. Game Freak is doing the same with the reusing of assets, the Pokeball plus controller, upcoming Home app, etc.

At this point Game Freak should just hire a new team to take over programming future games and become consultants. Still develop the designs, lore, moves, and oversee the general direction of the franchise but do none of actual heavy lifting.
 

Light Lucario

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At this point, I'm just hoping that they'll patch in older Pokemon primarily so that this controversy doesn't continue to overshadow everything else about the game. It probably will regardless unfortunately, but I am so over all of the rant/complaint videos about the subject.

To be clear, I'm not trying to dismiss people's anger towards this development or that Game Freak made the absolute best decision. I don't blame people for being upset to a point. Game Freak probably should have said something along the lines of the other Pokemon will be patched at a later date to reduce this backlash or at least be more upfront about the issue right when Pokemon Home was announced instead of waiting until E3 to drop it. I just find it more than a little frustrating and depressing that this controversy made this thread more active than anything revealed in the Pokemon Direct did.
 
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