For a few years now, players have been waiting for a more difficult and mature opus. Not that the Pokémon series never has been (quite the contrary) but it is true that the recent license games like sword and shield have often been considered far too simple because of the gameplay and their childish storyline. Of course, this universe still pleases as much and the implementation of the Multi Exp, to name but a few, will never prevent a fan of the license from buying the last title. But against all expectations, Game Freak and The Pokémon Company International finally listened to the fans by unveiling, last February, the next installment of the main series. First wrongly considered as an open world, Pokémon Legends Arceus made an impression and was immediately acclaimed by Internet users. Put aside the not very captivating graphics, the title enchants by its total difference with the other games of the license and its certain maturity, but will it succeed in convincing?

Note that NPCs are already much more mature than usual.
Note that NPCs are already much more mature than usual. – Credit (s): game freak, nintendo

A Pokémon game darker than ever?

In addition to its new original artistic direction and completely new gameplay, Pokémon Legends Arceus above all seems shocking by its maturity. The various trailers that we have seen present us with very mysterious things that no one has yet succeeded in deciphering. Of course, we can theorize about the storyline and the Legendaries’ involvement in it, but nothing has yet been confirmed about the time of this opus. The official information that we have is moreover rather intriguing and even sometimes very dark. Take the example of the freshly revealed Zorua of Hisui. His description in the Pokédex shivers down your spine:

“These Zorua migrated to the Hisui region after being driven out of their homeland by humans because of their strange illusions. They did not, however, survive the harsh climate of the region or the conflicts with other endemic Pokémon. Moved by their resentment towards humans and Pokémon, their wandering souls would then have reincarnated as Ghost-type Pokémon. ” – Official description on the Pokémon website

So cute and yet so terrifying ...
So cute and yet so terrifying … – Credit (s): game freak, nintendo

Worse yet, Hisui’s Zorua like to take on the appearance of people or Pokémon before feeding off the terror it arouses in its victims. Looking for a terrifying Halloween costume this weekend? Even though Zorua is downright cute, it is most definitely one of the most frightening Pokémon in the Pokédex. Moreover, the description of the latter was revealed following an encrypted teasing resembling the famous found footage of horror films. A new way of communicating from The Pokémon Company International (and Nintendo) which has surprised more than one. In fact, the Specter-type Pokémon in the license have always been a bit “creepy”. Lavanville was then the pinnacle of this special atmosphere and no one has forgotten the story of Osselait wearing the skull of his dead mother or even of Tutafeh wearing a mask that looks like his face when he was human… Great. Combined with a semi-open world where Pokémon can roam free and go wild directly by beating the trainer, this dismal new facet of the license could well take it away from its monotony decried by fans or even revolutionize it.

A promising scenario with the God of Pokémon

Despite rather repulsive graphics, Legends Arceus therefore fascinates with its originality. Pokémon and humans that don’t live in harmony and a region without arenas, that’s what awaits you in this ancient Sinnoh called Hisui. As a researcher of the Galaxy Group, you must complete exploration missions in order to investigate the mysterious creatures roaming the different biomes. Whether in the green plains or in the mountains, the Pokémon you come across will be hostile (see very hostile for those with red eyes for example) and will be able to defend themselves like never before. Would you like to receive a loaf from a Tygnon? In reality, you will not have much choice since the battles, now free and no longer turn-based, will require you to get your hands dirty.

Flee, poor fools!
Flee, poor fools! – Credit (s): Game Freak

The gameplay of Legends Arceus looks pretty promising as it takes a whole new direction, but when is it in the storyline? Described as an “old era that no longer exists today”, the Hisui region comes from a “very, very distant past”. Pokémon games do not have a specific timeline (except the Pokémon War for example), it is difficult to know if Legends Arceus takes place 400 years before XY for example. What we officially do know is that the story takes place at a time when Pokémon and humans didn’t yet know how to live in harmony. What we can deduce is therefore that Legends Arceus takes place well before any other Pokémon game in the license. But a theory has been animating the web for some time: what if we were rather in a parallel universe? After all, the multiverse and other time jumps are all the rage lately and why wouldn’t Pokémon take that direction, too? Especially since this is not the first time that Space and Time have been unleashed in the franchise. Remember for example the remakes of Ruby and Sapphire where, in endgame, you could ride a Mega Latias and explore different portals of Hoopa to face all the Legendaries of the license.

In the end, the storyline is intriguing because it will certainly reveal to us how the link between Pokémon and humans has been created over time. Even if it is certain that we are located in the distant past, the temporality is still very vague and the choice of starters at the beginning of the adventure is very strange: in Légendes Arceus, you will be able to choose between Moustillon, which comes from the fifth generation at Unys, Héricendre who is none other than the starter of the second generation at Johto, and Brindibou from the seventh generation at Alola. In short, a curious mixture that intrigues us. The opus being based on Arceus, the supposed god of all Pokémon, will we finally learn how the latter sent other legendaries to Hisui like Dialga, Palkia or even Regigigas? Remember that all legendary Pokémon have a well-defined role in the creation of the planet and its maintenance.

Why are these three together?
Why are these three together? – Credit (s): Nintendo

Especially since the notions of space and time seem very present in the Pokémon universe in recent months. You just have to see all the events related to Hoopa and its dimensional portals on Pokémon GO for example. What is Game Freak really preparing for us with Pokémon Legends Arceus? Recall that the chibi remakes of the fourth generation will be released on November 19 on Nintendo Switch, or a few months before the next license headline. The two games take place in the same region, a few hundred years apart: wouldn’t this be done on purpose so that we remember the history of Sinnoh as we know it today, in order to better understand his past and the different easter eggs that will be hidden in Legends Arceus? Anyway, Game Freak seems to have a lot for us in the scenario.

The hardest game in the series?

Game Freak has made the Pokémon series much more accessible over time, most notably with the Multi Exp. for example, but above all the absence of challenges that you have to start over several times before being successful. The criticism is now common: Pokémon is too simple. Filled with daring, the next game scheduled for January 28, 2022 on Nintendo Switch promises gameplay much different from its predecessors and even a throwback that fans have been eagerly awaiting. Among other things, Legends Arceus promises a very different and more complex capture system than usual: in addition to having to face some wild Pokémon, you will have to craft the precious pokéball yourself if you want to capture them. The latter will obviously not let it go and according to recent leaks, some Pokémon can only be captured under certain conditions. This will make the game even more immersive since some creatures will only leave their habitats during the day, for example, others will prefer the rain, and still others the wind.

The trainer terrified of Chopper.
The trainer terrified of Chopper. – Credit (s): game freak, nintendo

Even though it is not an open world, Game Freak could quite add difficulty options to its game. So, at the start of the adventure, we could choose the “easy” “normal” or “difficult” mode for example? This is only theory but one thing is certain: in Hisui, it is the Pokémon who reign supreme. On leaving the village, you enter their territory and therefore risk being chased by creatures with red eyes and getting hit. The leaks also show that if you fall KO in combat, you will lose some of the items in your bag. Gone are the days when you could store 999 superballs and 50 out strings. The storage of your bag seems very limited and you will only have to craft and then bring the bare minimum. This is probably where the game will be much more difficult than its predecessors. Finally, a sort of survival game, you will have to strategically choose the objects you want to take on your expeditions.

Better yet, Legends Arceus seems like the kind of game where endgame could quite be present once the main storyline is over. This is already the case in the other opus of the series of course where Legendaries can be captured once the League is over for example, but here, it could well be that everything is much harder with Pokémon much more complex to catch like in the Wildlands of Sword and Shield. Gamers are fed up that the Pokémon license games have been too simple for some time. What if those days were finally over? With Légendes Arceus, Game Freak finally offers us what we want: a semi-open world with free and dynamic combat, and a well-balanced difficulty for a return to basics. Verdict in a few months!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here