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Pokémon Legends Arceus: introducing the first open-world game in the Pokémon universe

Let’s go, Pikachu… and Pokémon fans! The latest Pokémon Direct just aired with some big news dropping. Most importantly is a new open-world game, Pokémon Legends Arceus.

This huge announcement comes just a few hours shy of Pokémon’s 25th anniversary on February 27th. It’s 2021, and Pokémon Legends Arceus has finally been unveiled as the first open-world game in the franchise’s history.

Almost two years have passed since the developers released Pokémon Sword and Shield, whose expansion packs actually hinted at the fully open-world release that was to come. There’s a heck of a lot to unpack in this latest release, so sit tight while we uncover the basics to start your journey in good ol’ Sinnoh.

pokemon 2021

For starters, this game is set to come out in early 2022 and based off the trailer, it seems like you’ll be able to take advantage of the open-world setting and stealthily devise methods to catch the numerous Pokémon hiding in the bushes.

A key change in Pokémon Legends Arceus is that it kicks off in a completely different period, taking place at a time way before the modern day Pokémon we came to know and love. Despite the latest instalment flagging a revolutionary step for Poké-kind, we may be enjoying a blast from the past instead.

The company stated:

“Pokémon Legends Arceus takes place in the Sinnoh region long before the events of Pokémon Diamond and Pokémon Pearl. The story unfolds in a long-gone era, before the idea of being a Pokémon Trainer or having a Pokémon League even existed.”

In other words, more Poké-lore will be revealed to let players further immerse themselves into this alternate universe. Since there are also reports of the god-like Arceus having a significant role in the game as well, it’s exciting news to say the least.

Though, this also means that some key changes will be made to the ever-familiar gyms and training centres. But never fear, the development team is here with a solution to remedy any concerns. They said:

You’ll still begin your journey with a Pokémon partner – but they won’t be native to the Sinnoh region. The starters you’ll choose from arrived from other regions with a Pokémon Professor, who encountered them during his research.”

You may be wondering who on earth these mysterious creatures are. Well, spoiler alert: its trailer already features iconic Pokémon such as Piplup, Rowlet, Oshawott, and Cyndaquil.

That’s not the only news to appear in the Pokémon Direct though. To celebrate its silver jubilee, the company has also revealed remakes – though regrettably, it’s not Pokémon Gold or Silver – of its popular Nintendo DS games, Pokémon Diamond and Pearl.

New game mechanics will be added in the games, including battle scenes that are closer than ever to the Sinnoh region. Both releases are set to launch at the end of 2021. While there has been some mixed reactions, mainly over the art style of the remakes, on the whole it seems fans are keen for some chibi-Pokémon action.

Pokémon Legends Arceus, Brilliant Diamond, and Shining Pearl will all be Nintendo Switch exclusives. Despite pre-orders not being available in Australia right now, an announcement is expected later in the year for those wanting to pre-order.

Pokémon fans have been truly blessed this year. With Pokémon Snap set to come out a few months later on April 30th as well, excuse us while we’ll be right back – we gotta catch ’em all!

Check out the trailer for a breathtaking glimpse into Pokémon Legends Arceus below.