During this week’s Pokémon Presents video, Tsunekazu Ishihara announced the new “Pokémon Brilliant Diamond,” “Pokémon Shining Pearl,” and “Pokémon Legends: Arceus” games. The “Pokémon Brilliant Diamond” and “Pokémon Shining Pearl” remakes are scheduled to release in 2021, and the all-new “Pokémon Legends: Arceus” will launch in early 2022. All three games will be available exclusively on the Nintendo Switch.
The big reveal this week was “Pokémon Legends: Arceus,” which will introduce fans to the Sinnoh region before the existence of Pokémon Trainers and Pokémon Leagues. It’s in this long-gone era that players will embark on an entirely new adventure to create the region’s first Pokédex. The game switches up the format, adding an open world and new RPG elements to the already popular franchise.
“Trainers caught their first Pokémon in 1996 and began an adventure that has lasted 25 years. Through eight regions, many different platforms, and countless Pokémon encounters, they have strived to be the very best,” said Mr. Ishihara. “We hope that fans of all ages will enjoy creating new memories while exploring the Sinnoh region in these new games.”
The “Pokémon Diamond” and “Pokémon Pearl” games were released in 2006 on the Nintendo DS. In the new versions, fans can visit the Sinnoh region to explore the remakes ahead of the “Arceus” prequel. Directed by Junichi Masuda and Yuichi Ueda, the games allow players to experience the original story and game features, with updated controls for the new system. Trainers will choose either Turtwig, Chimchar, or Piplup to be their first partner Pokémon before setting off on their journey. Along the way, they will be able to encounter the Legendary Pokémon Dialga in Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and the Legendary Pokémon Palkia in Pokémon Shining Pearl.
Nintendo added, “The sense of scale of the towns and routes has been carefully preserved, and fans who played the original games will recognize many familiar places. These games are updated with the easy-to-understand, player-friendly conveniences introduced in recent Pokémon core series video games, in addition to up-close-and-personal Pokémon battle scenes.”
“Pokémon Legends: Arceus” was developed as a new action-RPG, but with familiar elements from the franchise. The game takes place in the Sinnoh region as it existed in the past, long before the setting for Pokémon Diamond and Pokémon Pearl was established. Players will embark to create the region’s first Pokédex, and start with either a Rowlet, Cyndaquil, or Oshawott as their first partner Pokémon. These three Pokémon arrived with a Pokémon Professor, who encountered them on research excursions to various regions.
Nintendo’s description adds, “As Trainers explore the natural expanses in Pokémon Legends: Arceus, they’ll encounter Pokémon that call these grand vistas home. To catch wild Pokémon, players can study the Pokémon’s behaviors, sneak up to them, then throw Poké Balls. Players can also battle wild Pokémon with their ally Pokémon. By throwing the Poké Ball holding their ally Pokémon near a wild Pokémon, players will seamlessly enter battle. This new gameplay angle is intended to provide Trainers with an immersive experience.”
These three titles join the previously announced “Pokémon Snap” game, which takes place in the Lental region. Players will work with Professor Mirror, the region’s expert, on an ecological survey to photograph Pokémon thriving in nature. The game will be available on April 30, 2021, on the Nintendo Switch.
The description reads, “Wild Pokémon thrive on the islands of the Lental region, where environments can differ greatly, making for a variety of habitats where different Pokémon expressions and behaviors can be observed. Players will be able to get their attention by playing a melody or throwing fluffruit. They’ll also be able to use an Illumina orb (an invention of Professor Mirror’s) on Pokémon to witness something out of the ordinary. They can even use their camera to run scans, which can help them find hidden Pokémon or inspect their surroundings. As players keep researching a course, their research level there will increase, and they may discover Pokémon acting in different ways. Trainers may even encounter Legendary Pokémon or Mythical Pokémon.”
A photo’s score will be based on the subjects’ poses, how large they appear, how directly they’re facing the camera, and where they fall in frame. Each photo will get one to four stars, indicating how common or rare the behavior displayed is. Players will have to take many photos to fill out their Photodex, which is their collection of Pokémon photographs. Photos taken while conducting research can also be saved to a personal album, which is separate from the Photodex. When a course is completed, players can use the re-snap function to adjust the brightness, blur, zoom, and other aspects of their recently snapped photos. After photos are saved to the personal album, a photo-editing mode will enable players to customize their photos with stickers, frames, and filters.
To celebrate the brand’s 25th year, Articuno, Zapdos, Moltres, and even Mewtwo are appearing in Legendary Raid Battles as part of a Kanto-region-themed celebration event in “Pokémon GO.” In the “Pokémon Sword” and “Pokémon Shield” video games, a special Max Raid Battle event featuring Gigantamax Pikachu is underway. In “Pokémon Masters EX” from February 25 to March 17, Galar region Champion Leon and his partner Pokémon Charizard are making an appearance. Players who log into “Pokémon Café Mix” game from February 25th through February 28th will receive 2,500 golden acorns during a special promotion.