'Pokémon Sword & Shield' Will Have 18 Gyms To Conquer
Unless you've been living in a cave under the sea, or if you just don't care about Pokémon (either is a valid lifestyle choice) you're probably aware of the whole National Dex controversy surrounding the upcoming Pokémon Sword & Shield RPGs.
Fans of the classic monster-battling franchise were dejected to learn that the latest games won't feature every single Pokémon, because developer GameFreak wanted to focus on putting new features into the games rather than spend time animating and rendering over 800 monsters in HD.
While we still don't have a full list of which Pokémon are being cut and which will feature in the games, we can expect a mix of old favourites along with the obligatory batch of new monsters. As you can imagine, people have opinions on this. Some are worried their personal favourites won't be included in the games, and others have accused GameFreak of being lazy. It was a whole thing.
Obviously, for those who are still angry about the whole National Dex issue, the big question looming over Pokémon Sword & Shield is whether or not the new features in these games will be good enough to justify cutting out certain monsters from the games. A new issue of Game Informer which offers a deep dive on the new games has answered that question - to an extent.
With Sword & Shield being the first core Pokémon titles to arrive on a home console rather than a handheld, I think the expectation from fans has been that the Galar region will be the largest we've seen in a Pokémon game to date.
Based on what we've seen from the trailers released so far, that certainly looks to be the case, with massive wide-open spaces for players to explore and Pokémon that roam freely.
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Of course, with a larger world, you'd expect a lot more to do. There can't be many of us who still aren't over the fact that Pokémon Gold & Silver have so far been the only games to offer more than eight Gyms, after all. The good news is that the Game Informer story confirms that Pokémon Sword & Shield will have no less than 18 Gyms to conquer, divided between Major and Minor Leagues.
The idea behind this is so that the Gyms closer resemble traditional football leagues like the Premier League, as the Galar region has been inspired by the United Kingdom. Which Gyms are Major and Minor League depends on whether you choose Sword or Shield, but it sounds like we'll all get access to the same Gyms eventually.
It's unclear exactly how this works, but I'd assume you'll have to conquer the Minor League gyms, maybe take on the Elite Four, then go through and take on the Major League for an increased challenge. However it ends up working, it sounds like a pretty cool idea, especially given that every title since Gold & Silver has been severely lacking when it comes to substantial post-game content, IMO.
There are obviously plenty of other features that have yet to be confirmed, but if you're still upset about the National Dex, there was one other piece of good news to come from the Game Informer story. Pokémon producer Junichi Masuda confirmed that Pokémon cut from Sword & Shield aren't gone forever, and will appear again in future games.
Whether or not this is enough to reignite your excitement for Pokémon Sword & Shield is entirely down to you of course, but I'm personally looking forward to exploring the Galar region on November 15th.
Featured Image Credit: Nintendo