Nintendo Direct Reveals New Information On Pokemon Sword And Shield

Nintendo Direct Reveals New Information On Pokemon Sword And Shield
Credit: Nintendo via Youtube

A Direct Broadcast by Nintendo on June 5, 2019, has revealed a ton of new information about upcoming Pokemon Sword and Shield titles. The 16-minute long video holds information on some of the new Pokemon, characters, locations, and a new feature dubbed Dynamax. The worldwide release date for the game was announced to be November 15, 2019.

The direct was led by the producer of the game Junichi Masuda and the director Shigeru Ohmori from Game Freak. The opening of the video is a trailer of sorts, showcasing some of the new characters to be revealed later in the broadcast, along with introducing the plus-sized Dynamax Pokemon feature.

The broadcast gives more information about the Galar region, showing the vast plains and wilderness you will be able to explore in the game. It is revealed that the residents of the Galar region use Pokemon battles as their main form of entertainment. Most locations besides the grassland seem to be smaller towns or large sprawling urban areas. As such, gym battles take place in huge stadiums with crowds of onlooking fans to cheer you on as you challenge these leaders.

The broadcast is then handed over to James Turner, the art director of the upcoming titles, to showcase a handful of the region’s new Pokemon. A sheep Pokemon named Wooloo, a flower Pokemon named Gossifleur, and a quadripedal turtle called Drednaw are some of the showcased creatures.

A location called the Wild Area was also showcased during the Direct. Ohmori describes it,

“This Wild Area stretches between cities and is filled with abundant nature as far as the eye can see. Different Pokemon can appear depending on where you are and what the weather is like, meaning there will be new discoveries for you each day.”

The Wild Area seems to be filled with Pokemon free-roaming, and visible to the player as you travel rather than hidden behind tall grass like some other titles in the series. Players also have complete control over the camera, instead of a top-down or limited view, allowing for a more open and exploration-based experience.

Pokemon Direct also revealed the names and appearance of the two legendary Pokemon for the games. Both are wolf-like creatures, one whose body is made of a shield and the other who holds a sword in its mouth. New characters such as the champion Leon, your rival Hop, and the Pokemon Professor Magnolia make an appearance as well.

Now for what you have been waiting for: Kazumasa Iwao, the game’s planning director, talked about Dynamaxing. This is the title’s new feature mechanic. The Dynamaxing phenomenon allows Pokemon to grow to gargantuan size and strength once per battle, and only for three turns. While it is disappointing that Nintendo chose to add in a new feature rather than expand upon a returning one such as Mega Evolution, it is hard not to get hyped up at the prospect of heated battles between gigantic Pokemon.

This also leads to a cooperative feature, presumably for late-game trainers, called Max Raids. These raids will be handled by four trainers, working as a team against a Dynamaxed Pokemon to take down.

This raid boss will stay in Dynamaxed form for the entirety of the fighting, as opposed to the limited version trainers have to work with. In addition, only one of the four trainers is able to Dynamax their own Pokemon for the duration of the battle.