Pokémon is finally coming to Nintendo Switch, and we can't wait to see the familiar role-playing, monster-collecting series touch down on the console. Two new titles, as well as an unnamed 2019 Pokémon Switch RPG, will be available on Nintendo's latest system. You'll be able to play through the newest Pokémon Switch adventures this year, with the release of Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Let's Go, Eevee!, colorful 3D remakes based on Pokémon Yellow Version: Special Pikachu Edition. Ahead of the games' dual worldwide release, we've rounded up all the details we know right now. Because if there's one game we've all been waiting to hit the Switch, Pokémon is certainly it.
Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee will be released as separate versions, with Pikachu and Eevee acting as the flagship Pokémon for each title. Described as "core RPGs" by developer The Pokémon Company, they're meant to be interesting new takes on the classic Game Boy release. Much like Pokémon Sun and Moon and the titles before them, this new duo of games will feature one confirmed new Pokémon, though we don't know much about the rest of the lineup. As it stands, we can likely expect to see more of the original 151 instead of plenty of newcomers, but that information isn't available just yet.
Depending on which version you buy, you'll get the starter Pokémon Eevee or Pikachu, which will either ride around on your shoulder or head. You'll use them in battle too, of course, but rather than choosing between Charmander, Bulbasaur, or Squirtle, you get one of these darling Pokémon. It's a pretty good trade-off if you ask me. Pikachu and Eevee aren't even the only Pokémon that can travel outside of their Poké Balls. Ever wanted to ride on an Onix into Vermilion City? Now you can!
The games will ultimately play out like regular Pokémon games, with some major differences. Most importantly, you'll still catch Pokémon. In fact, you'll be doing so with a cool new peripheral called the Poké Ball Plus or your Joy-Con controller, via motion controls or the gyroscope in the Nintendo Switch while in handheld mode. You'll see wild Pokémon out in grassy areas and you can tap on them, then attempt to capture them. It seems a lot more streamlined, especially since there are no more wild Pokémon encounters to have to contend with at random.
But don't worry, Trainer battles and Pokémon fights are still the same turn-based endeavors you know and love, with Pokémon assigned four moves, and HP that you must whittle away, as well as PP to power their moves. If a fight proves too tough, you can even have a friend jump in with a second controller to act as a "support Trainer" to assist or play against you at some point.
One of the most interesting parts of these new Pokémon games are, in fact, their compatibility with the ridiculously popular mobile game Pokémon Go. You'll be able to import any Gen 1 Pokémon from Pokémon Go into Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Let's Go, Eevee! games. So if you find any Pokémon out there while discovering the world, you can bring them into the Switch version of the game to continue training them.
Of course, it's still not immediately clear what the limits on this will be, so folks won't be able to cheat, but it's a very cool feature that means The Pokémon Company sees Pokémon Go as an integral part of its video game strategy going forward, and we should see changes and updates continuing to come to the mobile game in the future.
These are full-fledged, honest-to-goodness Pokémon adventures otherwise, complete with gyms, rival Trainers, badges, and a whole wide world to explore. The way you interact with others and Pokémon may have changed a bit, and things are going to appear quite streamlined, but these are a breath of fresh air for the series as a whole. These games are the gateway to more Pokémon journeys on possibly the best system we may ever have enjoyed them on, and while these first few looks are promising, we certainly can't wait to see more.
Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! release on Nintendo Switch worldwide on November 16, 2018.