As you likely know, the last year or so has been filled with surprised announcements and reveals. We’ve seen classic series return in new forms, like WarioWare Gold on 3DS or Mega Man 11 on all modern systems. We’ve seen unexpected ports and remakes, like the ones for Crash and Spyro on PS4 (or Luigi’s Mansion making its way to the 3DS). And with everything from lootbox drama to a Nintendo CEO stepping down, it seems the insanity just keeps on coming.
And now, it seems like it’s about to get even crazier. Why? Because according to Japanese TV show Oha Suta, there’s going to be a ‘shocking’ Pokemon announcement on its episode this Thursday, with the show’s website even going as far as to say it’s the moment a new story begins.
(Though later updates changed the description to say it’ll be ‘full of Pokemon information’)
So, something important will be revealed this Thursday at 7:05 JST/11PM GMT. But what will it be?
Well, it’s hard to really know to be honest. On the one hand, the obvious expectation is that it’s probably related to the Switch game in development, with rumours about said game and its status as a reimagining of the series swirling around right now.
Add to this the good timing of such an announcement (given that a Pokemon Direct is all but confirmed soon and that Pokemon news is always released prior to E3), and that’s a good indication that the news could related to this ‘Pikachu and Eevee focused return to Kanto’ title rumour mongers have been mentioning online.
Hence in our minds, it seems like the announcement may tie into that somehow. Maybe it’ll be a name reveal with a logo and some other basic information. Maybe we’ll see a new Pokemon or two from the title, or a glimpse at some of the new mechanics. Honestly, with the revelation that the reveal is shocking, anything seems possible here.
But it’s not confirmed and given the massive size of the franchise and array of expanded universe possibilities there, the announcement could well related to everything from an anime movie to a toy line or trading card reveal. It’s hard to be sure one way or another really.
So, for now, we’ll just wait and see what the future brings. Either way, what do you think is going to be announced? What do you think the shocking Pokemon reveal set for Thursday’s Oha Suta show will be?
Tell us your thoughts on the matter here in the comments or over on the Gaming Latest forums today!
Pokemon Reveal + Pokemon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon Battle Competition (Serebii.net)
As mentioned in its original announcement, WarioWare Gold is a sort of ‘best of type’ collection for the WarioWare franchise in general. With microgames taken from every title in the series and control mechanics inspired by their respective games, it seems the game is meant to be the equivalent of Mario Party the Top 100 for WarioWare, with the returning aspects intended to highlight the series’ history.
However, it seems WarioWare Gold isn’t only pandering to nostalgia here. Nope, because as a piece of artwork for the game on the 3DS eShop suggests, an all-new character seems to be coming to the series as well!
Yep, as shown in this piece of promo art on the European 3DS eShop, a mysterious extra WarioWare employee seems to be added to the game. This employee is another young girl sort of like Mona or Ashley, and can be seen to the left of the latter in the picture below:
Which in turn makes us wonder…
Who is she exactly?
Because based on her design, she does seem to share a fair few similarities with Ashley. She’s got the strange looking bow, a hair style that may resemble hers in some way or another and a design that makes her almost look like a ‘good’ equivalent to her in general.
And that in turn makes us wonder how her microgame selection may work here. After all, Jimmy T also got characters similar to him in the DS title, with those two having microgame selections taken from the sets played so far. So, could this newcomer be similar? Could she also be related to an existing character and have random games from others’ selections in her set?
Or will she instead be an all new, unrelated character instead? After all, even those associated with others in the series have more originality in their microgames now, with both Mike and Penny Crygor having their own unique microgames and story despite being associated with Dr Crygor in various ways.
It makes us wonder, and either way seems perfectly possible. As for now? Well, we’re just gonna be happy that a new major WarioWare character is coming to WarioWare Gold, and that Smooth Moves isn’t going to be the last title to introduce newcomers to the cast list. Good job there Nintendo. Glad to see Mario and Zelda aren’t the only series getting new characters and concepts introduced, and that even a ‘compilation’ title like this one has something more than rehashes to offer.
But hey, what do you think about it all? Are you happy to see a new WarioWare character in WarioWare Gold? How do you think her storyline will play out? And what do you think of the design in general?
Have your say in the comments below or over on the Gaming Latest forums today!
Nintendo 3DS eShop
Have you ever wanted to create dungeons for the Legend of Zelda series? Model an overworld of the sort found in titles like Breath of the Wild?
Come up with interesting puzzle box setups based on Mark Brown’s Boss Keys videos?
Oh of course you have. Everyone’s looked at the Zelda series at some point and wanted to work on it. Heck, it’s a dream role for thousands of people in the series, with composer Grant Kirkhope being only one example.
And now, it could be a possibility for you as well. Why? Because Nintendo’s just put up a job posting for a level designer for the Legend of Zelda franchise. Here’s the listing page if you haven’t seen it already:
As you can tell (via a quick Google translation), they’re asking for someone to create game events, dungeons and overworld areas, with enemy placements specifically mentioned as part of the job description. They also mention that said person should be a fluent Japanese speaker (due to the need to collaborate with others), have experience producing games in some manner and will be trialled for 3 months before potentially getting promoted to a permanent member of staff. In other words, it’s exactly what you’d expect from a role like this.
So, check it out, and give it a shot if you have the skills required. After all, Corey Bunnell did back in 2014 or so, and that got him a job working on Zelda Breath of the Wild.
If you take advantage of the right opportunities, the sky’s the limit here!
The Legend of Zelda Level Designer Listing (Official Nintendo Jobs Site)
As you likely know, Pikachu only has one evolution in the Pokemon series. Oh sure, it has a pre-evolution in the form of Pichu and an Alolan variant for its evolution, but the evolutionary line stops at Raichu, regardless of what some clueless scientist on Cinnabar Island might say in the original games.
However, did you know it didn’t used to be that way?
Yeah, you heard us right. At one point in Pokémon’s development, Pikachu was actually the first stage of a three-part evolutionary line, with Raichu having an evolution of its own.
This is confirmed by a recent interview in Yomiuri where Pokemon series artist Atsuko Nishida mentions a scrapped second evolution for the iconic electric mouse. This second evolution would have it become an unknown Pokemon called Gorochu, described as a fiercer looking creature with fangs and a pair of horns. Here’s the quote about it straight from the original article:
In the game Pikachu only evolves to Raichu, but I hear that at first there was three stages. Why did it end up being only two stages? (Or one evolution)
Nishida: Yes. It was “Pika(chu),” “Rai(chu),” and “Goro(chu).” The Pokémon known as Gorochu bared fangs and even had a pair of horns.
It’s certainly an interesting thing to think about, isn’t it?
After all, the horns and fangs suggest a more menacing final form than Raichu turned out to be, with elements of a demonic motif potentially being present there.
Above: Though maybe it could have looked more like this hoax from back in 2013…
And that’s not all. Oh no, remember that as a rule, elemental stone evolutions tend not to evolve again afterwards in the main Pokemon series. There may be the odd exception in future, but in general, the elemental stone tends to activate a Pokémon’s last evolutionary form.
However, Raichu was only the second form in this shortened line. This raises the question of whether it was originally going to evolve some other way, or whether the rule of elemental stone evolutions not evolving afterwards wasn’t decided then.
Which in turn leads to questions about the anime or Pokemon Yellow could have worked as well. Okay, they weren’t really things anyone was thinking about at this point, but… picture it for a second. If Pikachu didn’t require a Thunder Stone, that would completely change the mechanics for both of these adaptations, and likely mean they’d go in totally different directions from what we actually got.
So, in that sense, cutting Gorochu may have been instrumental to the direction of almost every part of the Pokemon franchise. For want of a nail indeed!
However, as interesting as that thought experiment aspect may be, it’s not the only intriguing thing brought to light in the interview.
Oh no, quite a few other details about Pikachu’s design and character development were mentioned there too. For instance, Pikachu wasn’t actually a mouse in the game’s early development either.
Nope, back then it was actually meant to be a squirrel. In fact, the red cheeks Pikachu is partially known for are a holdover from this, with the idea of it having cheek pouches for electricity coming from how squirrels store food in their cheeks:
Nishida: Since it was an electric-type, I thought it would be nice to have it store electricity in its cheek pouches. At the time I was really into squirrels, and since squirrels store food in their cheeks I thought about giving it cheek pouches. Also, squirrel tails are cute so I gave it a tail as well. However, I did want to give it some kind of “lightning” part to it, so I gave it the lightning-shaped tail.
And that’s still not all. Nope, before it was even meant to be a squirrel, Pikachu was actually envisioned as a daifuku. As in, it was originally based on a certain type of Japanese cake with ears, with the name ‘Pikachu’ being part of why it was eventually turned into a mouse.
Add to this how its original concept was created as a way to add ‘cute’ Pokemon to a series that didn’t yet feature them or how its rarity in game was driven in part by its creators wanting to keep it to themselves, and it becomes clear that every element of the electric mouse’s creation stemmed from pure serendipity. Kind of like many other Nintendo characters and their origins when you think about it…
So yeah, go and read the full translation from Silicon Era if you want to know more. There’s quite a lot of interesting stuff there, and you’ll get quite the glimpse of Pokémon’s development process while you’re at it.
As for now? Well, give us your thoughts on the scrapped Pikachu evolution or its design in the comments below! Would you have wanted to see Raichu evolve into a more powerful Pokemon, or Pikachu with a squirrel inspired design?
Pikachu Originally Had A Second Evolution Called ‘Gorochu’ With Large Fangs And Two Horns (Silicon Era)
Earlier today, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts held the Bafta Games Awards. These awards turned out pretty well for Nintendo, with the company’s products being nominated for nearly every category and winning quite a few of them with titles like Super Mario Odyssey and the Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild.
However, what really got people’s attention was not the ceremony. Oh no, it was the follow up interview the BBC held afterwards.
That’s because in that video, Nintendo’s Shinya Takahashi made reference to a new system that Nintendo was supposedly working on. Here’s his original comment from the interview, as translated by a nearby interpreter:
Nintendo constantly works on hardware, so we have been doing research and development. You may see the new system sometime in the future.
As you can tell, it’s certainly an interesting hint towards an unannounced system. But is it really a big deal?
Well, to be honest it’s hard to know.
Because you see, Nintendo is always working on new hardware. Seriously, that’s how the company operates. Whenever one system comes out, they start work on its successor shortly after. Same with their games, with each Mario and Zelda title usually starting developing not long after the previous one wraps up.
Yet that doesn’t mean said new games and systems are coming ‘soon’. It just means they’re in development right now.
And nothing in the video contradicts that. Indeed, Mr Takahashi doesn’t say the system is coming in the ‘near future’, nor does it say it’s coming ‘soon’. Heck, he doesn’t even give a timeframe from when it might be announced.
Just that you ‘may see the new system sometime in the future’.
And well, given that Nintendo’s always working on new things (and that they’ll inevitably be releasing new games and systems in the future), that quote really just reaffirms what we already know.
So don’t panic about it, okay? Relax, and remember that Nintendo is always working on new products, even many years before they’re due to be released.
Nintendo Celebrates Bafta Hat Trick (BBC News)