Pokemon Sword and Shield Feel Like an Exciting New Step in the Franchise's Journey

Pokemon: Sword and Shield has become one of the most talked about games of the year, and there's little doubt as to why. After a stunning announcement, fans were made privy to details about the game, and some of those struck a bad chord with gamers. However, after getting our hands on the game at San Diego Comic-Con, ComicBook.com has good news to report.

Even for a short demo, the Pokemon: Sword and Shield demo felt like a natural extension of the overall franchise.

Getting the chance to demo, I was able to play a 20-minute portion of Pokemon: Sword and Shield. The given demo was very restrictive as it only featured a handful of new Pokemon which have all been announced, and it all took place within a gym. However, the gameplay felt plenty familiar walking in.

To start, the game's console rendering looks gorgeous even on smaller television screens. Your Pokemon avatar moves smoothly across the screen, and everything is textured colorfully. From a glance, it appears to run together more smoothly than in previous handheld titles, but that rendering will be tested for real when demos allow gamers to visit the title's Wild Area.

Though I did not get to go Pokemon catching, I was able to take part in several battles. My goal was to beat the Gym Leader Nessa which required me to defeat some low-level grunts along the way. As usual, these battles were easy enough, and the game made is easy for me to figure out the best counters to use. By the time I got to Nessa, I had to a solid handle on the battle interface, and then it was on to the real match.

Fighting Nessa was the real highlight of the demo as it made two things apparent; For one, Pokemon: Sword and Shield put a lot of effort into its new characters. Nessa was a strong headed delight from the start, and I was happy to battle her. And secondly, the game's brand-new Dynamaxing gimmick is very important when it comes to strategy. If I had not gotten a hang of the tool at the last minute, I have no doubt I would have lost my battle with Nessa despite having the best type Pokemon in play.

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All in all, the demo felt a little bare, but it delivered on everything I expected to see from Pokemon: Sword and Shield. As more gameplay demos continue to go live, fans will get a better taste of what this console title has to offer with its exciting new additions.

So, do you have questions about the game? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to talk all things comics and anime!

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Exciting news, Pokemon fans -- A Wild Podcast Has Appeared, the official Pokemon podcast of ComicBook.com, is here! Check it out by clicking here or listen below.

On today's episode, we're reminded just how big the Pokemon brand is. We're also talking Gene Simmons and what he had to say about his new Pokemon counterpart as well as what Pokemon we want to see get a regional form in Pokemon Sword and Shield! Make sure to subscribe now to never miss an episode!