An Open World
During Nintendo’s E3 2017 presentation, big N announced that Game Freak is working on a “core Pokemon RPG” for the Nintendo Switch. The Switch Pokemon game will not be the first time that the pocket monsters have landed on a Nintendo home console however. There was Pokemon Stadium 1 and 2 on Nintendo 64, as well as Pokemon Colosseum and Gale of Darkness on Gamecube. This announcement is far more exciting than any previous console entries because of the use of the word “core.” The Switch game will hue closer to the handheld entries than any other console installment.
Unlike any of the previous RPGs for console, handheld games have offered players an expansive world to explore. The Switch game needs to take that idea and expand on it. The Switch should offer a much larger and more open world than has ever been seen before in a mainline Pokemon entry. Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild saw great success in taking the standard formula of its series, tweaking it just a bit and rapidly expanding the amount of areas to explore. The Switch Pokemon game should do something similar, keeping the basics of the handheld games but also living up to their full expansive potential.
If Game Freak really wanted to be ambitious, they could go for a full open world experience. Rather than have the game separated into linear chunks, the Switch Pokemon could allow players to access wherever they want in the world from the start. Obviously, like most open worlds, if players go too far into one area they are going to meet some merciless opposition. This could lead into running into gyms or wild Pokemon that are too difficult, but the option to try and fail could be there.