Some new rumors have surfaced in anticipation of the Pokemon-themed Nintendo Direct on Friday, February 26th – namely that a 7th generation of games entitled Pokemon Sun and Pokemon Moon is to be announced as part of the broadcast.
Although this hasn’t been confirmed (and won’t be until the Direct at 10:00 AM / 7:00 AM PST), the leak is in the form of seemingly legitimate trademark information discovered by Nerdleaks revealing the titles of the game and even showing off highly polished logos.
A seventh Pokemon generation seems to be coming at the right time as Nintendo releases a new wave of Pokemon titles as a jumping off point into their next console generation. It should also serve as an excellent promotion for the spinoff title Pokken Tournament, coming to Wii U on March 18th.
As for my thoughts on all this, I like the idea of another generation with elemental and maybe even mystical theming. Some individual Pokemon like Solrock, Lunatone, and the legendary Cresselia are based on the sun and moon, and I think there’s a lot of potential there, stylistically and otherwise.
I likely won’t be getting myself any of the next generation games, unless some irresistible changes to the formula come with them (I already filled up the whole Gen 6 Pokedex, so don’t be judging me), but I do have a theory from the game alone. I personally wouldn’t be surprised if Sun and Moon types were added to the already extensive list of types in place.
After all, Fairy type was introduced in Pokemon X and Y, much to the joy and/or frustration of many, so this seems like a prime moment for new type additions, especially if new Pokemon are created specifically to be put in these categories. Even if the hardcore players are forced to tweak their precious metagame all over again.
No matter what happens, I’ll be fairly stoked if a new Pokemon generation is announced, and especially happy if it plans to bring a lot to the table in terms of enriching an already amazing franchise. I’ll be keeping right on top of this broadcast on the official Nintendo Direct website, so until then, stay frosty!
In an announcement from Nintendo, the final Nintendo Direct Broadcast dedicated specifically to Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS has been revealed to be taking place on December 15th. While this likely doesn’t mean the end of all new content and updates to the game, this will represent the last game-changing set of content added to it.
Reportedly, the major highlight of this broadcast will be more details on Cloud Strife, the main protagonist of Final Fantasy VII, who was recently revealed as the newest third-party addition to the game. If you’ve seen Cloud’s reveal trailer, however, you can see that he appears mostly complete – every one of his moves was showed off, suggesting that development of the character is done, beyond possible debugging to prevent possible issues with downloads and online play. Given this, I have zero doubt that we’ll be getting a release date for the character, and I’m betting it will be soon – possibly right after the Direct, if we’re lucky. I do wonder, though, about the fact that Cloud is seemingly touted as one of the highlights of this Direct when there isn’t a whole lot left to talk about anymore – it seems as though the two main possibilities are that Mr. Sakurai will take the opportunity to discuss Nintendo’s relationship with Square Enix, creators of Final Fantasy, which is apparently much better than we thought, or that there won’t be as much time spent on Cloud as we’re being led to believe. Personally, I wouldn’t mind the latter possibility, because this will leave more time for the meat of the Direct – especially the new characters.
What we really can’t guess for sure is how many new characters will be revealed, although we can be sure that there won’t be none revealed. My expectation is two, since detailed examinations of the game’s code by some talented data miners have shown three available unnamed character slots, one of which was presumably taken up by Cloud, leaving two wild cards. Yet, plenty of rumors and speculations have gone around predicting everything from one new character to five, which goes to show how little is known for certain.
What we do have is a pool of characters who are most likely to be included – chances are that the top three candidates based on unofficial polling are Shovel Knight, the outbreak indie icon and star of his eponymous game that got its start on Nintendo consoles, Shantae, the half-genie hero of Nintendo handheld fame for the past decade, and King K. Rool, the oldest and most well-loved Donkey Kong villain. Other names have been tossed around recently like Wolf O’Donnell, Super Smash Bros. Brawl veteran and Star Fox villain, Isaac from the Golden Sun series, Rayman from…well, Rayman, and Banjo-Kazooie from…well, you get the idea. Whether or not a character is more or less likely to be included considering being from a third party is hard to say – third parties are often highly requested, but Nintendo has already said that popularity doesn’t guarantee inclusion – corporate barriers can still stand in the way of our wildest dreams at the end of the day. Yet, with Cloud’s inclusion, many preconceptions about a certain addition being “possible” have gone out the window. For me, I hope Shovel Knight and Shantae are our new stars of the show, but anything can happening, and I’ll be happy to see new faces in the mix.
Apart from these, there may be other major changes incoming – some fans have speculated about the possibility about the addition of an equivalent of the Subspace Emissary singleplayer campaign from Brawl, where characters from the game teamed up and/or butted heads through beautiful CGI cutscenes and a lengthy series of story missions. Given the magnitude of such an undertaking, though, I wouldn’t expect something like this – if anything, I would expect a few more stages, probably brought in along with whatever fighters are revealed. Whatever happens, the one thing I know is that I am extremely excited for Tuesday, and I’ll be right there with everyone watching at 5PM EST to see how the landscape of gaming changes that much more, compliments of the great Masahiro Sakurai and his merry band of developers. To quote the great Desmond Amofah, better known as Etika of EWNetwork, let’s get ready to ride this hype train to the sun!