2016 began as the year of Pokémon Go, with Nintendo confirming that it had plans to introduce a version of the franchise made specifically for smartphones running Android and iOS. Then the company revealed the Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon releases. Just like that, everything changed. 2016 could very well be the best year for fans of the franchise yet.
Coming later this year, Nintendo intends to take players back to the land of Pocket Monsters one more time on its current handheld gaming console. This is at the same time as it’s giving away rare Pokémon at events and letting gamers have a nostalgia filled gaming experience with the re-release of Pokémon Red, Pokémon Blue and Pokémon Yellow.
Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon Release Date
Now that we know they’re on the way, what everyone is waiting for now is the official Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon release date. On May 10th, Nintendo finally made it official.
The Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon release date is November 18th in the United States and November 23rd in Europe. On that day, anyone that pre-orders a physical copy of the two games will get to pick them up at their favorite retailer, like Best Buy, Target and GameStop. The late November release date ensures that series fans will get the opportunity to enjoy both this release and Pokémon Go, which is said to arrive sometime this summer.
Players are getting three new creatures to choose from as their starting partner, Rowlet, Litten and Popplio. Each represents the same elements that starter Pokémon always have: Grass, Fire and Water.
English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese, Koreans, traditional Chinese and simplified Chinese will all be supported languages when the games launch.
Pokémon Sun and Moon for Nintendo 3DS
In recent years, some have speculated that Nintendo is at the cusp of a new generation of hardware, and that this generation of hardware will form a combined platform for both mobile console and living room console, called the Nintendo NX. We’re still waiting to see if those rumors are true, Nintendo says that it won’t be discussing new hardware at Electronic Entertainment Expo in June.
What we can safely say is that current lovers of the Nintendo 3DS will absolutely be able to play Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon. The same day that Nintendo confirmed the game’s names, it also confirmed that both games would come to the Nintendo 3DS, no hardware upgrade required.
Pokémon Sun and Moon Integrates with the PokeBank
We don’t have any news of confirmed features for Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon. Of course, they are Pokémon games; despite whatever new idea Nintendo introduces, you’ll still need to breed, capture and level up a team of creatures to battle your enemies based on their team’s weaknesses.
There is a single new feature that we know about. Nintendo itself revealed that feature too, so it’s guaranteed to be making its way to Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon. The PokeBank, a service that exists now so that players of the franchise can offload their monsters onto other versions of the game, will support Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon. Any creatures caught in the recent games will work with PokeBank, Nintendo says. Pokémon Omega Ruby, Pokémon Alpha Sapphire, Pokémon X and Pokémon Y are all confirmed to work.
Besides supporting the recent titles, Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon will extend back into the franchise’s beginnings. It’ll also boast support for creatures captured in Pokémon Red, Pokémon Blue and Pokémon Yellow. To be clear, those versions are only compatible with the feature if players are using the Virtual Console versions that were just made available; the original GameBoy versions won’t work with the game, unfortunately.
Pokémon Sun & Moon Region & Starters
In a recent video The Pokémon Company and Nintendo revealed that Pokémon Sun & Moon would take players to Alola, a chain of islands dominated by massive volcanoes. On a store details page, Amazon confirms Alola will have multiple islands asking potential buyers to, “Embark on a new adventure as a Pokémon Trainer and catch, battle, and trade all-new Pokémon on the tropical islands of a new Region and become a Pokémon Champion!”
Three all-new starter Pokémon are confirmed for the titles. They are Rowlet, Litten and Popplio.
Pokémon Sun & Moon Reveal Date
Surprisingly, that’s all we know about the Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon release thus far. That won’t be the case for too much longer though. Nintendo and the Pokémon Company confirmed in a social media post on Twitter that we’ll hear more about the titles on June 2nd.
In the mean time, Nintendo is busy planning other events to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the franchise. Sometime this year, the company is also planning the release of Pokémon Go a version of the adventure game set in the real world and made specifically for iPhones and smartphones running Google’s Android operating system. Pokémon Go will be free for users to start playing.
Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon will cost $39.99 each. GameStop and other video game retailers are already taking Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon pre-orders.