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Pokémon Scarlet/Violet Aren’t the Series’ First Games To Seem Rushed

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Pokémon Scarlet and Violet officially launched not too long ago, with fans embarking on their first true open-world adventure in the Pokémon world. While some have praised the games for this effort, it’s hard to ignore the frequent lagging and glitches that populate the games. A glitch here or there is acceptable, but there are so many mistakes at times that it seems like the games could crash at any minute.

Some may be confused by the games’ poor performance, but to those following The Pokémon Company closely, it isn’t much of a surprise. For a few generations now, Pokémon games have seemed rushed, perhaps in an effort to ensure the games hit the shelves just before Thanksgiving and the holiday season. Like other games that came before it, here’s how Pokémon Scarlet and Violet suffer from an unfortunate series trend.

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Pokémon Sun & Moon Had a Protagonist With No Emotions

Sun and Moon character

Pokémon Sun and Moon made up Pokémon‘s second mainline entry on the Nintendo 3DS, having launched on Nov. 18, 2016. While many appreciated the games for shaking up the original gym formula, it’s clear some aspects needed improvement. Since Sun and Moon tell a deep story with dynamic characters, the player character would need to assert themselves to have an emotional stake within the story. However, during many cutscenes, the developers did not animate the player character’s face. As a result, they have a blank smile, even when in dramatic or tense situations.

This lack of emotion, along with other aspects (such as an empty Mt. Lanakila, which serves as the game’s victory road), makes it seem like the games were rushed. They lack polish and extra content, and based on their negative reception, including them in the enhanced Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon was not the right move.

Sword and Shield scenery

Being the first mainline release on a home console, Pokémon Sword and Shield had major expectations to live up to. The infamous Dexit controversy, which tore apart the fanbase by excluding the National Pokédex, also shrouded the games’ release. When the games dropped on Nov. 15, 2019, fans were quick to point out their abysmal graphical performance. In-battle animations are lacking and uninspired and are almost ripped directly from the Nintendo 3DS Pokémon engine. The same applies to the character models, which move and interact with the world similarly to characters in Sun and Moon. However, the most prominent graphical failure is the textures of the Wild Area, specifically the trees, rocks, and other natural elements. With more time, Game Freak could have perhaps made a better game with higher-quality graphics.

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Pokémon Scarlet & Violet Have Frequent Lag & Distracting Glitches

Scarlet and Violet bug

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet are the most recent additions to the franchise, having launched on Nov. 18, 2022. The open-world adventure that everyone’s been waiting for, Pokémon Scarlet & Violet perform quite badly on the Nintendo Switch, unfortunately. It’s common for animations to drop frames when a short distance away, the battlefield to glitch out of existence, and for lag to interrupt the experience frequently. While the games go beyond Sword and Shield‘s Wild Area, it’s clear that they seem rushed, with mistakes being incredibly commonplace during the player’s experience.

After reviewing the different games and their respective flaws, it’s clear that each game came out just before Thanksgiving, each three years apart. The Pokémon Company wants to ensure its games launch every three years, just ahead of the holiday season, regardless of the issues with each game. It’s concerning that with every release, the flaws have become progressively worse.

In the video game industry, companies delay their games quite often. Nintendo delayed long-awaited games such as Animal Crossing: New Horizons and, more recently, The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, to ensure the games are as great as they can be for a public release. Why does Pokémon need to follow such a strict release schedule? The Pokémon Company should take time with its future games so they’re the best they could possibly be — without mistakes that make it seem like the games were rushed for the holidays.

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