The Emotional Roller-coaster of Nintendo’s Latest Direct

*Header image courtesy of Nintendo*

On June 5, Nintendo announced that their latest Direct would focus solely on the Pokémon franchise. Immediately, my mind began to (unfortunately) fill with countless possibilities.

Maybe we would finally see footage of the fabled Pokémon Stars, a Nintendo Switch version of the 3DS’ Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon! Or, what if Niantic added accessibility options for Pokémon GO? (Wishful thinking, I know.) OR, WHAT IF THE POKÉMON COMPANY FINALLY UNVEILED THE LONG – AWAITED POKÉMON MMO!!??

I couldn’t wait for June 6’s Direct. With eight minutes of nothing but Pokémon goodness, there would have to be some exciting news.

The Direct opened with The Pokémon Company’s Tsunekaz Ishihara speaking about the Nintendo Switch.

“And now, finally, we are excited to announce a Pokémon game for the system,” he said.

THIS IS IT, EVERYONE! THIS IS WHAT WE’VE BEEN WAITING FOR!

Pokken Tournament DX.

……What?

Now, don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed Pokken Tournament on the Wii U. In fact, you can even check out my review here. But, this is NOT what I was hoping for. To make matters worse, it’s essentially the same game. I mean, sure, adding five new Pokémon, in addition to three new game modes may seem exciting, but is this game really worth $60?

I can answer that for you.

No.

Immediately after the Pokken Tournament DX segment ended, the Direct continued, revealing Pokémon Ultra Sun and Pokémon Ultra Moon for the 3DS. This time, The Pokémon Company’s Junichi Masuda took to the stage, stating that these games would contain alternate stories to Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon.

Now, this intrigues me. According to Masuda, these titles should not be considered a sequel. Rather, think of them more as games like Pokémon: Emerald Version, or Pokémon: Platinum Version. These entries took place in the same universe as their predecessors, but slight alterations to the story, as well as differing Pokémon, make for a completely new experience. Sure, the region may be the same, but you’ll be playing the story from a different perspective.

Things are beginning to look up.

Finally, it was revealed that the original Pokémon: Gold Version, as well as Pokémon: Silver Version, will be released on the Nintendo eShop. The titles will be compatible with the Pokémon Bank app, allowing trainers to transfer their monsters to the modern games.

In my opinion, this small announcement saved the Direct. Pokémon: Silver Version is by far my favorite game of all time. Even though I already own both the original, and the Pokémon: Soul Silver Version remake, I’ll be sure to add this to my virtual collection.

Okay, I understand that I sound like a hypocrite, especially since I complained about Pokken Tournament DX. However, the second generation of the Pokémon franchise will always find a home in my library, regardless of how many iterations I currently own.

For many Pokémon fans, this Direct was a disappointment. Despite the release of three new games, the amount of hype and speculation before the conference resulted in the outcry that you can find across social media and gaming websites alike.

Even though my wishes weren’t granted with this Direct, I’m not ENTIRELY disappointed. We may just have to wait a little longer before we look to the stars, or venture online with our favorite “pocket monsters.”

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