The next entry in the iconic Pokémon series has been revealed for the Nintendo Switch. For the first time ever, two players can cooperate together (one Joy-Con each) to catch Pokémon. The Kanto region returns as a setting for the new game. Two versions will be released including Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee! indicating which Pokémon players will begin their journey with as their “partner” in the title’s new gameplay system.
Pokémon Let’s Go, Pikachu! is inspired by Pokémon Yellow from the original Nintendo GameBoy release of 1999 and will launch globally November 16, 2018 exclusively on the Nintendo Switch. The title will favor a more Pokémon Go style of catching Pokémon over the randomized battles of previous games, and is a new direction for the franchise as envisioned by development studio GAME FREAK who are also the developers behind the original Pokémon Blue, Red, and Yellow games that the new title is based on. The developers have stated that the game is meant to be a simplified formula for more players around the world to enjoy with ease.
This new Pokémon game looks more advanced graphically than previous titles as well. Many dedicated as well as long lost fans are expressing excitement for the title which could bring both crowds together again. Some fans do have concerns overall with the title being too watered down for mainstream players though. Pokémon Bank is likely not compatible with this game, for example. It is also unclear if Pokémon acquired in the game will be transferable to future games which are expected as early as 2019.
Players can catch Pokémon in Pokémon Go then send them from their smartphone to the Nintendo Switch game itself (they cannot be sent in the other direction). There’s even a Poké Ball Plus controller that will work on both titles as a bluetooth accessory. The Poké Ball Plus has motion controls built into it and players will be able to feel the Pokémon they’ve just caught as if it was really inside of the Poké Ball Plus. This adds a tactile feel and also allows Pokémon to be taken with you wherever you go in real life which will get rewarded once returned to the Nintendo Switch game. All in all, Pokémon Go integration looks reasonable and thankfully is also optional.
Yesterday Nintendo also launched Pokémon Quest (a free-to-play title for Nintendo Switch and coming later to Mobile). You can check out our Hands-On Impressions of Pokémon Quest.