Ultra Sun and Moon to Be the Last Pokemon Series Games on 3DS

Posted by at 11:02 am on October 19, 2017

On November 17, Nintendo will release Pokemon Ultra Sun and Pokemon Ultra Moon for the 3DS handheld. Developer Game Freak has now confirmed that they will be the last new core Pokemon games released for the 3DS, meaning the future of Pokemon is going to be fully-focused on the Switch hybrid console.

In total, there are eight core Pokemon games for the 3DS. In 2013 we got Pokemon X and Y, then in 2014 we got Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. 2016 saw the release of Pokemon Sun and Moon, and then next month we get Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon. Those last two games feature an alternate storyline set in the Sun and Moon world.

As to why there will be no more Pokemon on 3DS, beyond the age of the system it’s down to Game Freak pushing the 3DS to its limits. In an interview, Game Freak director Shigeru Ohmori explained that the development team thought Pokemon X and Y had stretched the 3DS as far as it could go, but they were wrong. Pokemon Sun and Moon underwent a complete redesign and managed to push the system yet further.

The fact Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon are a new story in the existing world suggests the limit really was reached with Sun and Moon, but Ohmori insists they did “push the system to its absolute limits” this time. Any further games on the system would ultimately end up being graphical tweaks and no further evolution simply because the system can’t handle anything more.

Kazumasa Iwao, director of the final two Pokemon 3DS games, confirmed that the development team is only half the size of that on Sun and Moon at 80 people. It also looks like a lot of fresh talent as he refers to the team as “young.” So what are the other, more experienced 80+ Game Freak employees doing? You can probably guess it’s the next Pokemon game, which will be heading to Switch.

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