As promised, Nintendo and developer Game Freak wired up their Pokémon Presents earlier today, and we were treated to a barely three-minute trailer for Pokémon Scarlet & Violet, followed by a slew of gameplay facts that delved deeper into what the Paldea region has to offer. And it turned out that a lot is new – still.
You begin your career as a Pokémon trainer at Naranja Academy (Scarlet) or Uva Academy (Violet). It is in this school that you are assigned missions by the teachers, get to know friends and enemies, and go on expeditions in search of treasures.
The adventure is this time divided into three “branches”. One of them involves taking on classic Gyms and defeating all the trainers in them. As usual? No, you can take care of them in whatever order you like now. The other two branches are still shrouded in obscurity, but Game Freak highlights that at any time you can choose which of the three branches you feel like progressing on.
Unlike in previous Pokémon games, the Legendary Pokémon – Koraidon if you’re playing Scarlet, Miraidon if you’re playing Violet – will no longer be elusive endgame monsters. This time they are your main means of transport right from the start. Using them, you can speed across grassy plains, swim across bodies of water and glide from mountaintops, and it’s clear that Game Freak wants to highlight how they’ve put a greater focus on exploration than before.
The gameplay novelty on the battlefield is this time called neither Dynamax nor Gigantamax – but “Terastal”. Through Tera Jewels, Pokémon can “Terastalize” once per battle, then become sparkling like jewels, increasing their stats and enhancing their abilities. This is called by Game Freak “the key” to getting through the battles in Scarlet & Violet.
Finally, up to four players can enjoy and discover the entire Paldea region together, completely free of obstacles and closed areas. Additionally, a new multiplayer battle mode called Tera Raid Battles is added. Here you meet difficult Tera-Pokémon in time, but if the party succeeds in bringing down the pocket monster, you get a chance to capture the defeated Pokémon, and add it to the collection.
In summary, we see samples of some repetitions/variations from previous games, but also a lot of new things, as I said. Pokemon Scarlet & Violet is released on November 18th and you can watch the trailer in full below. Are your expectations Gigantamax-high?