Pokemon gen nine starts in 2022 with Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. Here’s what we known about the newest Pokemon games at this point.
Pokemon Scarlet and Violet were revealed during a Pokemon Presents event in February. Though a ninth generation was expected to be revealed at some point, Scarlet and Violet came as a shock. This was because Pokemon is white-hot thanks to Pokemon Legends: Arceus. Most fans were expecting the “main event” of the Pokemon Presents to be Legends: Arceus DLC.
So far, no Pokemon Legends: Arceus DLC has been confirmed. It seems unlikely that any will materialize. This means the spotlight will shift to Pokemon Scarlet and Violet for developers at Game Freak and the Pokemon Company.
The official release date hasn’t been confirmed yet, but the initial trailer stated the game is coming in 2022. Given the previous tease and tradition, this means that Pokemon Scarlet and Violet are likely coming out in November 2022.
Every main Pokemon game since Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire has come out in November. The most recent example is Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, which came out on November 19, 2021.
It’s possible that Pokemon will ditch its recent tradition in favor of something closer to the Christmas holiday, or even earlier in the year to plug any holes in the Nintendo Switch’s release calendar. But November remains the most likely landing spot for the next installment in the series.
Pokemon Legends: Arceus blew up the established Pokemon game formula by letting the player trail a wild Pokemon roaming an open world before hitting it with a Poke Ball. Unfortunately, that mechanic is gone.
Players loved the ability to more effortlessly catch Pokemon without the hassle of initiating a battle. This mechanic was a huge component of the Arceus game, with Pokedex entries being filled by catching multiple Pokemon of the same species. But that won’t be the case in the newest Pokemon games.
“You’ll be able to experience the true joy of the Pokémon series, battling against wild Pokémon in order to catch them, now in an open-world game that players of any age can enjoy,” the official Pokemon Scarlet and Violet website states.
While one can certainly give the side-eyes to Nintendo stating that this is the “true joy of the Pokemon series,” it doesn’t really matter what fans think because evidently it’s coming back. The good news is that while one of Pokemon Legends: Arceus’ best features will be removed, one of the game’s other most-loved features will be expanded.
While Pokemon Legends: Arceus lets players freely explore large, open environments, Scarlet and Violet let players explore a fully open world. This is a first truly open-world game in the entire Pokemon franchise and is a big step forward from past games. Pokemon has long been somewhat stuck in the past, but that could change in Scarlet and Violet.
For the second generation in a row, and the third time in four generations, Pokemon games will be set in Europe. In Pokemon Scarlet and Violet’s case, they will take place in a new region based on Spain and Portugal.
This was teased in the initial trailer for the game, which included a map of the real-life Iberian Peninsula. While the first four generations of Pokemon were all based on parts of Japan, Black and White saw things move to the United States where the series hasn’t returned since.
Game Freak highlighted that while Spain and Portugal are generally known for having nice climates, there are some harsh locations in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. There are beaches and coastal cities, but players can also look forward to scaling mountains and crossing deserts.
The first new Pokemon shown off for Pokemon Scarlet and Violet are starters Fuecoco, Quaxly, and Sprigatito.
Fans have been generally positive regarding the designs for each one, with Sprigatito being the favorite to this point. The trio have a style and energy more similar to early Pokemon generations, with abilities to match.
Precedent suggests that there are many more new Pokemon set to be added to the roster in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. A number of Pokemon from various generations have been shown off including Larvitar, Hisuian Zorua, and Swablu.