The upcoming Pokémon Sword & Shield will make dramatic changes to the way Pokémon nature is used, with nature changing items getting introduced that will make building a competitive team for the game's pro scene significantly more appealing. The Pokémon series has made several changes over the past few generations of games to make breaking into the competitive scene much easier, as in older titles, the grind was incredibly off-putting, with players needing to reset games endless amounts of times for the right starter nature while also training Pokémon against other specific Pokémon in order to raise stats properly.
For those unfamiliar, Pokémon Sword & Shield will be making a series of huge changes to the franchise, the biggest being the leap from purely handheld devices to the Nintendo Switch's console/handheld hybrid offering. It's the first mainline title in the franchise to do so, and with that change comes the possibility for many more. Pokémon Sword & Shield will have version exclusive gym leaders for the first time, a restructured take on the game's formulaic quest to become the best trainer in the world, and the most controversial decision in series history - the removal of the National Dex from the game. The latter has been a point of contention for many fans who felt it was unfair that Pokémon they had trained across generations of games would no longer be present in the newest one, but developer Game Freak has stood by its decision to trim down the amount of Pokémon available by a significant number.
A new trailer for Pokémon Sword & Shield dropped earlier today that also sent the competitive community spinning, as it announced a huge number of updates that will universally benefit players looking to train up competitive teams. The biggest change comes with the new ability to change a Pokémon's nature through items called Mints, saving players countless hours of playtime. That's not the only major change coming, however: players can now max Pokémon EVs with items, use candies that only give EXP rather than a level, and have egg moves passed down from Pokémon of the same species.
How these new items and features impact the Pokémon community, which is still thriving years after the game's initial boom, remains to be seen, but response appears to be largely positive so far. With so much being made about how accessible the new Pokémon Sword & Shield look and design is, it's a pleasant surprise to see Nintendo and Game Freak also acknowledge the more hardcore fans within the community.
Obviously, Pokémon Sword & Shield is going to be one of the most talked about releases of 2019 thanks to being the first mainline console game in series history. It might also be the most friendly to competitive players, though, and that change could see an influx of new faces into one of the most passionate video game communities around - a hidden bonus that's naturally quite sweet.
Pokémon Sword & Shield releases for Nintendo Switch on November 15, 2019.
Source: Official Pokémon YouTube Channel