Game Freak Recruitment Ad Raises Questions: Pokémon for Nintendo Switch?
Ever since the release of Pokémon Sun and Moon, there have been rumors that a possible third installment of the series could be released on the Nintendo Switch. Although a third game has yet to be confirmed, Game Freak and the Pokémon Company generally follow this three title series, with the third game having extra features with a later release date. Some examples of this trend are Pokémon Red, Blue and Yellow; Pokémon Gold, Silver and Crystal; and Pokémon Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald. Some series such as Pokémon Black and White, Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, and Pokémon X and Y however did not follow this format, but fans are still hopeful that the Sun and Moon duo will follow the original rules and produce a third game with added features and special game play. It would amazing if the third title brought Pokémon to the Nintendo Switch.
The rumors about Pokémon being released on the Switch come from a couple of different angles; one being the capabilities of the Switch changing from a console to a handheld in just seconds, The Switch features a tablet like system that is placed within a dock that allows the game to be played on a TV with the joy-con pieces attached to the joy-con grip as a normal controller. If you want to take your gaming on-the-go, you just lift the tablet out of the docking station, and the game will move from the TV to the tablet in seconds. Then just slide the joy-con off the grip and attach them to the tablet and you are good to continue your gaming on the run. You can enjoy your game while commuting to work or taking your dog for a walk. Any game on the Switch can be played seamlessly from one place to another, without much interruption. What could be better than more gaming time?
Since traditional franchise Pokémon games are played solely on handheld systems, the Switch could be a possible candidate for the rumored third Pokémon Sun and Moon installment. This would be a little different for the franchise, but it seems that Nintendo and The Pokémon Company are thinking outside of the box and are trying to push the limits of gaming as we have seen with The Switch and Pokémon Sun and Moon. It would be the first main Pokémon game to be playable on a home console gaming system as well as a handheld. Pokémon would still be playable on the go, but the question is will the Switch be able to handle what the 3DS has done so well over the years?
The Switch doesn’t have 3D capabilities and only has about a three hour battery life while in handheld mode. Being a huge Pokémon fan myself, I can tell you that three hours is no where near long enough for play time. The play time actually varies by game, depending on the intricacies of the game play. Since Pokémon games tend to be pretty complex, I feel the battery life may be on the lower side. I won’t really miss the 3D as I usually have it off anyway, but the option is always a plus. For those who prefer the larger 3DS XL, this may be enjoyable for you as the Switch is bigger with a larger screen. Personally, I prefer the smaller 3DS, because I have pretty small hands and I can’t reach all that far. The Switch is portable in a sense that you can pick it up out of the dock and take it wherever you go, however it doesn’t fit in your pocket like a 3DS does, so you would need a bag of some sort for it to feel completely portable. Overall, it does seem like a possibility, just concerned about how drastically different the game will be due to the Switchs’ limitations.
Another origin of these rumors comes from a recent recruiting ad from Game Freak for a Pokémon related project. Although this doesn’t necessarily mean that it is going to be on the Switch, it does indicate the possibility of a follow up game to Pokémon Sun and Moon. The recruitment ad states that Game Freak recruits will be working on a globally popular RPG that will be on a console. They are looking for people with experience with Wii U and PS Vita level character models and that can create cartoon like super-deformed monsters, characters and item models.
Game Freak will also need help with debugging and data work and will require experience with an animation software called Maya. Speculation suggests that it could be any Pokémon game, such as a spin off title like Pokkén Tournament and Pokémon Mystery Dungeon. However up until now, Game Freak has never had any part in spin off games. These games tend to be handled by external developers outside of Game Freak. Game Freak only deals with the main Pokémon games such as Pokémon Sun and Moon, which the anime follows. Seeing as Game Freak is merely in the recruitment stage, it’s doubtful that the third installment of the Sun and Moon games will be on the Switch as these games take years to develop and test. If that were the case, the game wouldn’t be out for quite some time, which doesn’t fall in line with how Game Freak handles the release of these third special titles.
Since Game Freak only handles the main Pokémon games, the only other possibility is that they are beginning work on the next generation of the games. It seems that this ad was released in order to start work on a possible eighth generation of Pokémon! If so, this is super exciting news! I am very eagar to see how they will format and mold the game to work on the Switch. I wasn’t completely sold on the Switch before, but I definitely am now. I don’t want to miss out on the future of Pokémon games.
Pokémon potentially coming to the Switch leaves some burning questions. What will happen to the 3DS line? Will the handheld line be tossed aside due to the fact that it is no longer necessary, since the Switch offers mobile gaming? A main Pokémon game being released for a Nintendo console will destroy the need for a handheld line. Will they just leave all the 3DS games behind, or incorporate a way to play them on the Switch by either transfer of accounts of downloadable versions on the store? Many questions have come up since the release of the Switch and hopefully we won’t have to wait too long for some answer.
Until next time…..adventure on!