Pokemon Addresses National Pokedex Controversy

The Pokemon Company has released an official statement about their decision to not include every Pokemon in Pokemon Sword & Shield. Earlier this month, the Pokemon fanbase erupted in outrage after Game Freak director Junichi Masuda noted that not every Pokemon could be transferred into its upcoming Pokemon Sword & Shield games. While the ability to transfer all 800+ Pokemon species was a part of every past game, Masuda noted that the more detailed animation styles present in Pokemon Sword & Shield and the ever-expanding number of Pokemon species made adding every Pokemon a concern as the franchise moved forward.

Fans were not thrilled with this announcement and flooded every Pokemon social media post with demands to "bring back the National PokeDex," a reference to the ongoing list of Pokemon that appeared in every game up until Pokemon Sun & Moon. In response, Masuda released an official statement acknowledging the complaints and re-assuring fans that Pokemon that don't appear in Pokemon Sword & Shield would appear in future games.

"Thank you to all of our fans for caring so deeply about Pokémon," Masuda's statement read. "Recently, I shared the news that some Pokémon cannot be transferred to Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield. I've read all your comments and appreciate your love and passion for Pokémon. Just like all of you, we are passionate about Pokémon and each and every one of them is very important to us. After so many years of developing the Pokémon video games, this was a very difficult decision for me. I'd like to make one thing clear: even if a specific Pokémon is not available in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, that does not mean it will not appear in future games."

While this isn't the statement that some fans were hoping for, it does re-assure fans that every Pokemon will continue to have a place in the franchise. However, it appears that there are no current plans to add additional Pokemon species to Pokemon Sword & Shield via DLC content or post-release patches, which is what many fans had hoped would happen due to the outcry.

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"The world of Pokémon continues to evolve," Masuda concluded. "The Galar region offers new Pokémon to encounter, Trainers to battle, and adventures to embark on. We are pouring our hearts into these games, and we hope you will look forward to joining us on this new journey."

Pokemon Sword & Shield will come out on November 19th.