A job posting has a lot of fans speculating over the future of the Pokemon franchise.
Creatures Inc., one of the co-owners of the Pokemon franchise, recently posted a job listing looking for someone with Unity and Unreal Engine experience. A screenshot posted with the job post (seen above) shows a high-poly version of Pikachu being made using the Unreal Engine software.
For those not familiar with the intricacies of game engines, the Unreal Engine software is one of the more advanced game development software available for use on today's market. Games like Gears of War 4, Injustice 2, PlayerUnknown's Battleground, and Street Fighter V were all developed using the Unreal Engine 4 software. While the Pokemon franchise has never used the Unreal Engine, we have seen amateur developers place Pokemon into worlds created by the software.
Of course, the immediate thought process with this job listing is that the upcoming Pokemon Switch game will be made using Unreal Engine, a prospect that would have even non-Pokemon fans excited for the game. However, fans shouldn't expect an Unreal Engine-driven Pokemon Switch game yet.
While Creatures Inc. is a game developer and one of co-owners of the Pokemon franchise, it doesn't actually make the main series Pokemon games. Instead, they provide the 3D models for the Pokemon games, which are actually developed by Game Freak. And while Creatures Inc. is looking for someone with Unreal Engine experience, Game Freak hasn't posted any job listings looking for someone with similar qualifications and they've never developed a game using that software before.
Creatures Inc. isn't responsible for the Pokemon Switch game, but they do make spinoff games like PokePark or Great Detective Pikachu (which supposedly will have a sequel coming out soon). It's possible that Creatures is trying to hire additional staff for a new Pokemon spinoff game, one that's a little more ambitious than a normal Pokemon game and won't have as high as expectations.
Creatures Inc. is also responsible for the 3D models used in the Pokemon TCG and in commercials, so it's also possible that they're just looking to assist with marketing efforts for when the next Pokemon game does come out next year.
This job posting could tease some big possibilities for the Pokemon franchise or it could be nothing at all. Either way, 2018 should be a huge year for the Pokemon franchise.