Pokemon's newest anime is no stranger to major changes in the anime's formula with several new shake ups such as the return to Kanto, a second protagonist, Ash getting three new additions to his team before the 20 episode mark, and much more. We could be seeing the biggest change in action yet, however, as the latest episode of the series just might have teased that Ash will be skipping the Galar League altogether simply because there's no reason to. Although Ash has his eyes set on the Galar Champion Leon as his rival, he's got a much different route to get there than expected.
After losing his battle against Leon in a previous episode, Ash was introduced to the Pokemon World Championships. In order to get his rematch, he'll have to rise through a set amount of ranks and face off against thousands of other trainers trying to rise in the ranks to make it to a final tournament featuring the eight top trainers. Meaning, Ash doesn't really need to get the eight Galar badges.
The latest episode of the anime explains the concept of the ranking system once more as Ash needs to make his way to the Master Class by fighting strong trainers in the Normal, Super, and Hyper Classes. The major wrench in this, however, is that the Pokemon World Championships makes all trainers equal. While the League challenges have trainers face off and earn badges against these leaders, the leaders are also all entered in the Normal class too.
Meaning that Ash doesn't have to face off against gym leaders in order to rise in the ranks, just opponents who have higher rankings than him. There's a chance this could involve the various trainers of the Galar League down the line, but Ash won't be winning badges from them. Even the first example of this had Ash taking on the Vermillion Gym Leader once more, and walking away with a new ranking rather than a badge.
With Ash heading through every region, this actually opens the door to all kinds of fun rematches with older gyms. Meaning that Ash will probably take on lots of actual gym battles, but he's not going on the standard eight badge route this time around. Then again, with the new protagonist Go there's still an opportunity to do it the classic way.
But what do you think? Does Ash taking on the World Championships mean he's skipping out on the Galar League? Which gyms would you want to see if that's the case? Let us know your thoughts in the comments or talk to me directly about all things anime and other cool things @Valdezology on Twitter!