The Pokemon series once upon a time saw releases in the mainline series only once every few years, with typically three games to a generation. That has greatly changed over the years, with the franchise beginning to see remakes and even the first set of direct follow-ups in the franchise. Due to that, the series has almost become an annual one in recent years, which begs the question, is a new Pokemon game coming this year?
At this point, many might assume there is no chance that Nintendo would announce a major Pokemon game this late into the year, but looking back a year ago, it was only on May 7 that we got the completely out of nowhere reveal of Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. These two games were rumored to be coming for ages just because it made sense, but the confirmation came from Nintendo and Game Freak on a random Wednesday with the reveal of the game’s trailer, completely apart from any Nintendo Direct or anything.
Nintendo has been very quiet on the handheld front lately, especially in comparison to the last few years that had plenty of games slated for the fall. Following the delay of The Legend of Zelda Wii U, the Wii U currently has Yoshi’s Woolly World, Mario Maker, Xenoblade Chronicles X, Fatal Frame, and maybe Star Fox coming in the second half of the year.
Nintendo still has some other Wii U titles to reveal I’m sure, but the 3DS literally has nothing announced for the Fall or Holiday season outside of a new Animal Crossing game. That gives all the more credence to Nintendo having some games up their sleeve to announce at E3 for the Nintendo 3DS and a new Pokemon game would be a great fit.
It would be highly unlikely that we’d see a jump to the full next generation, but a third game in the X & Y series would make all the sense in the world. Whether it is one game like Yellow, Crystal, Emerald, or Platinum, or two sequels like Black 2 and White 2, this seems like the perfect year to release a follow-up.
The longest stretch we’ve ever seen between the original releases in a gen and a “third” is way back in the first-gen in Japan with about two and a half years between the release of Pokemon Red and Green and the eventual Yellow. The closest was Pokemon Gold and Silver to Crystal, which was only a year, with the rest being about a year and a half to two years apart.
The other possibility is that maybe we’ll finally get another console arena Pokemon game like Pokemon Stadium or Pokemon Coliseum. The last one of these we saw was Pokemon Battle Revolution for the Wii in Generation 4, leaving the Black & White and X & Y series completely left out from console battling. There is also Pokken Tournament that could get ported from arcades to Wii U, but that is a much different kind of fighter. Best case scenario would be the reveal of a new 3DS game and one of these as well.
By the time a game would release in the likely Fall, there are also a number of Pokemon amiibo that will have released from the Super Smash Bros. line that could be implemented into a new handheld game in some way, especially on the New Nintendo 3DS. With Pikachu, Lucario, Charizard, Greninja, and Jigglypuff either out of coming out by the end of the month, plus the possibility of Mewtwo coming in those months prior, there is plenty that could be done here to give gamers more usage of their amiibo.
Hopefully E3 will shine some light on the rest of the year for the 3DS, but as we saw last year, we could get a reveal of a new Pokemon game at any point. While we know of absolutely nothing right now, I still would bet we’ll see a Pokemon Z or something later this year to fill that Pokemon gap in the Fall that we are beginning to expect these days. Do you think we will see a brand new mainline Pokemon game later this year? If so, do you think it will be a “third” entry in the X & Y generation or something entirely new? Make sure to let us know in the comments below.