TELLING US A LOT, WITHOUT TELLING US MUCH
Another trailer, another load of information to go through! We are noticing a bit of a pattern by now of the trailers throwing concepts at our head with no real details, which is getting a bit annoying, but there are clearly some new things we can talk about.
As usual, let’s start with the Pokémon.
Alolan Rattata and Raticate were introduced, surprising no one. While most people expected Rattata to be a dark-type, both it and Raticate actually wound up being Dark/Normal-types with the ability Gluttony or Hustle.
These Pokémon have never been anything to write home about and it doesn’t seem like this new form will change that. Alolan Rattata has barely changed, aside from the colour, while Raticate clearly needs to hit the gym and lose a few pounds. All in all, it’s sort of a boring change.
It’s a nice reflection of the trouble Hawaii had with the introduction of rats (which bred like crazy) and mongooses (meant to deal with the rats) , but we’d rather have seen a more useful Pokémon get an Alolan form.
Next up is the bizarrely-named Dragon-type, Jangmo-o. It looks kinda cute with the heart-shaped scale on its forehead and Bulletproof and Soundproof are decent abilities. Its official description makes it sound like it could be a hard-hitting, tanky dragon, but we’ll have to wait and see.
The last new introduction is the disaster that is Type: Null. No, that doesn’t mean a new type was discovered. This thing is just called Type: Null, for some reason. Maybe there was a contest to think of the worst possible name for a Pokémon we missed out on.
Type: Null looks…like a freaking disgrace. Seriously, what the frilly hell is that thing? Granted, it’s supposed to be made up out of different Pokémon, but Gamefreak seriously couldn’t design something around that concept that didn’t look like shit?
It is a Normal-type with the ability Battle Armour and, according to the official description, it was made to rival the legendary Pokémon.
On to gameplay!
An earlier trailer showed us that some Pokémon will have personal Z-moves, such as Alolan Raichu getting a Z-move named Stoked Sparksurfer and Snorlax’s Pulverizing Pancake. It’s a cool idea and it’ll be interesting to see which Pokémon get singled out for a unique attack.
This trailer also told us that people who get Pokémon Sun and Moon early (Before January 11th) will get a special Munchlax with the required Z-stone for Snorlax’s Z-move.
In the most recent trailer, we learned that Sun and Moon will be set 12 hours apart. The trailer explains this a bit poorly, so let us clarify this. In Sun and Moon, certain areas are supposedly caught in a never ending day or night, to manage evolutions depending on the day/night cycle, but in general time will pass according to the internal clock of your 3DS.
The difference is, while Pokémon Sun matches the time to the internal clock, Pokémon Moon checks the internal clock and then sets the in-game time 12 hours ahead. Essentially, if you play Sun in the morning, it will be morning in the game but, in Moon it will be evening.
Different Pokémon will appear on certain routes depending on the time of day and certain events will play out differently depending on which game you play. For example, Gumshoos is the Totem Pokémon of Verdant cave on Melemele island in Pokémon Sun. In Pokémon Moon, however, the Totem Pokémon is Alolan Raticate.
The official website makes it sound as if these are not the only differences between games, but we cannot confirm that at time of writing.
The new trailer also introduced us to a host of new character but, frankly, they don’t seem particularly important.
What is important is the faction most of these belong to, which is called the Aether Foundation. Residing on a manmade island called Aether Paradise, the organization cares for abused Pokémon and unspecified research.
Aether Paradise’s overall function isn’t entirely clear. Mentions are made of Pokémon not native to Alola and Pokémon which ‘need a little extra protection’ residing there, so maybe it functions as a sort of Safari Zone. However, considering it’s meant to protect the Pokémon, this does not seem terribly likely. What is clear is that the island holds some sort of plot relevance, though.
We’re also introduced to Team Skull’s enforcer, Gladion. Apparently he’s mostly concerned with being a strong battler and he will be using Type: Null.
One of two new features is the Zygarde cube. It will store Zygarde cells found in the overworld and, once enough have been collected, will be instrumental in unlocking Zygarde’s 100% form.
The other new feature is the ability to take pictures of Pokémon with the Rotom Pokédex for unclear reasons. This can only be done in certain spots and will add their basic information to the Pokédex, but that appears to be the only reason to do this. The official websites mention that your pictures will be evaluated and that, as you take better pictures, features like zooming in will be unlocked.
So, right now, it sounds like you’d be taking pictures of Pokémon for the sake of being able to take better pictures of Pokémon. Maybe more interesting rewards will be revealed later, who knows?
Finally, the big reveal of this trailer was the introduction of Ultra Beasts, which are supposedly very powerful, very dangerous Pokémon only known by codenames.
So far we’ve only been introduced to UB-01, which looks like a jellyfish…and that’s sort of all we can say about it.
We don’t know its type or ability, what plot relevance it has or even if it will get a proper name or not. We don’t even really know enough to say if we like this idea or not.
Overall this trailer was…profoundly unhelpful. It introduced some new things, but left most of them so vague it might as well not have bothered in some cases. Hopefully future trailers will bring some clarity.
We mainly want to learn a bit more about these new Ultra Beasts and we’d still like more information on the island trials. What about you? Anything you’d like to see more of in the next trailer? Let us know in the comments below!