In an interview with Famitsu, Junichi Masuda and Shigeru Ohmori revealed that Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield will only contain Pokemon from the Galar region. Why? Because adding all 1,000+ Pokemon to the game would be too hard, according to them.
“Masuda reiterates that with the shift to the Switch, the amount of time needed to make the graphics more beautiful and the animations more lively has increased. Another aspect is the fact that the Pokemon series has reached over 1,000 Pokemon (including form changes), and as such, apart from the graphics, balancing for new Pokemon with new abilities has become very hard. This is the reason behind the decision this time, and they have judged that it will be hard for all the Pokemon to appear, even in titles going forward. This was a decision that had to be made sooner or later, according to Masuda.”
Given that they overhauled the models for the Pokemon, building all of the old ones over from scratch was basically a no go. It’s not that it wouldn’t be possible, but it would mean that the release date would have to be pushed way back in order to accommodate all the extra Pokemon.
However, they will be updating the models and adding them to Pokemon Home over time, almost like a Nintendo version of PlayStation Home. Siliconera wrote…
“Regarding whether Pokemon may be added in future updates, this is currently uncertain. However, even if not in Pokemon Sword & Shield, Game Freak plans on making those Pokemon shine in future titles going forward, via Pokemon Home. They do not want the players’ past Pokemon to feel worthless.”
Some gamers were not feeling this decision because it means you don’t get all of the previous Pokemon from all of the previous games.
However, Masuda and Ohmori’s reasoning also extends to future titles, given that they introduced the new Mega Evolution and Dynamax effects for Pokemon Sword and Shield, and it would add even more work to the table if they included this feature for every single past Pokemon as well.
You can look for Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield to launch on the Nintendo Switch starting November 15th.
(Thanks for the news tip Lolis are all Queens)