Yesterday, we’ve just come back from the latest Pokemon Direct, and oh boy, do we have some stuff to go through. Unlike a lot of recap posts, I won’t go through everything, but I want to go over what I’m most excited for. I wanted to wait before giving my thoughts, so that I could hurriedly shiny hunt that Nickit, and start my newest shiny hunt.
So we had a pretty lengthy Pokemon Direct, and the first thing that came up was Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX, set for release on March 6th, with a demo version available now, and you can carry over your save data when the game is released. I’ve downloaded the demo, but I haven’t played it yet. It’ll be an interesting experience, as I’ve never played a Mystery Dungeon game before, so I can’t wait to try it out and see if it’s to my liking. It’s a remake of Red Rescue Team and Blue Rescue Team, filling fans with nostalgia. £49.99 is a bit steep for my liking, though, so I might wait it out for a while before purchasing.
We also have Pokemon Home confirmed to be released on February, which is pretty soon, and exciting. Personally, I want to carry over my ORAS, Sun, Ultra Sun and Let’s Go Eevee Pokemon to Home, but I’m not sure whether or not the eligible few I will transfer over to Sword. Home is a paid service, much like with Bank, but I don’t see it costing much more than Bank currently does (£4.49 annually for us here in the UK). Interestingly enough, despite being mentioned before, there was no information on if Pokemon Go would be compatiable with Home.
And now, the moment we never expected. We were told we were going to get some more information on Sword and Shield, but we weren’t expecting two expansion passes – The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra. Each expansion pass will feature new Pokemon, new trainers and new Galarian forms. Isle of Armor features a story based on growth. I’m happy to have bought Sword because I really like the look of Klara, who uses Poison-type Pokemon. We also have Mustard – not the condiment, but a mentor within the story. Have they ran out of name ideas?
We were introduced to Kubfu, a Pokemon integral to the story, and Urshifu, its evolution – which has two different styles (and a Gigantamax form). I like the idea of different types for each form, and I’m leaning towards the Rapid-Strike Style, which is Fighting/Water, mainly for its type combination. I’m wondering how we manage to get the different forms, though. Perhaps it’s in the way that we train them.
Oh, speaking of Gigantamax, we saw the Gigantamax forms of the starters – and I think despite having chosen Scorbunny, I favour the Gigantamax Inteleon, purely for its design and that it makes it look like a proper sniper – when I play certain games such as Fallout 3, I prefer sniping, so this fits really well.
Isle of Armor will be released in June this year.
Crown Tundra offers even more to the game. It has a theme of exploration, and introduces a new Legendary Pokemon called Calyrex, although I was hoping it would be a Mythical Pokemon, as we haven’t seen a story-based Mythical in a long time in the main-series games, and this would be a great starting point.
We have a new co-op mode, which will allow us to explore Pokemon dens, and have all of the previous Legendary Pokemon that are able to Dynamax. We also have Galarian versions of the Legendary Birds – Articuno, Zapdos and Moltres, along with what look to be two new members of the Regi group. I am really excited for the Galarian Birds, as they were my first Legendaries (as I’m sure was the case for most people), so to see them with a new lick of paint, so to speak, is refreshing, and I wonder how it all ties in to the story.
Crown Tundra will be released in autumn this year.
Both of these passes will bring back Pokemon that were not originally in the Galar region – such as Garchomp, Kingdra, Crobat, Talonflame and even Gigantamax forms of Blastoise and Venusaur. This makes over 200 more Pokemon added to the already-packed Galar region. And what’s better is if you decide not to buy the expansions, don’t fret – you’ll be able to get the Pokemon through trading with a free update, so you’ll be able to have the Pokemon despite not having the pass, which I think is a great idea as a compromise.
We also have Galarian Slowpoke announced, and we were actually able to catch one within the current game (although as of yet, you cannot evolve it, you need items that come with the expansions). I watched as several streamers were hunting for shiny Slowpoke yesterday, and that was what I was doing after Nickit. This makes me wonder whether we’ll have even more Galarian forms of existing Pokemon that have not yet been announced to return – maybe this means we could have Galarian Shinx (I’m not holding my breath, but it would be nice to have an Ice/Dark form from the Crown Tundra).
We also have a lot of new custom features, including items worn by other characters, new hairstyles and clothing, and even ways to customise your Rotom Bike. I’m intrigued, but I already really love my custom features that I have on my character, so I may or may not take advantage of these new items. I wouldn’t mind a bright yellow Rotom Bike though.
We have new Wild Areas in these passes too, complete with Pokemon Dens and new discoveries. I absolutely adore the Wild Area in the main game, so I’m excited to have more Wild Areas to immerse myself in.
The expansions will cost £26.99, and are a bundle. They cannot be sold separately, and they are available for pre-purchase now. Due to lack of funds, I haven’t done this yet, but there is still plenty of time to go.
I have to say, I was completely in Hype Central when this was announced, and I am intrigued as to what this means for the Pokemon. They mentioned they want to steer away from the rehashes or third-versions, so they are doing this instead. I wonder if it means that there will be more passes to come in the future of Sword and Shield.
I do apologise that it took so long to write this, I had an awful lot to do. Let me know what you thought of the news!