Pokémon Sun and Moon hit the shelves with a vengeance and offered fans a fresh new take on what we'd come to expect of the #Pokemon franchise. These new games do not see the player running around a region, collecting Gym Badges and entering the Pokémon League. Instead, the player faces a series of trials and battles in the Alola region. And this fresh take could indicate what the coming installments for the franchise might have in store for us.
There's Been A Pattern — Sort Of
Previous generations of games typically followed a pattern of release, whereby two games hit the market at once, followed by a third release a little later:
- Gen 1 first release: Pokémon Red and Blue Second release: Pokémon Yellow
- Gen 2 first release: Pokémon Gold and Silver Second release: Pokémon Crystal
- Gen 3 first release: Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire Second release: Pokémon Emerald
- Gen 4 first release: Pokémon Diamond and Pearl Second release: Pokémon Platinum
The sixth generation of games, #PokemonXY, did not have a third game, but instead focused on the remakes of the third generation, Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. The fifth generation of the franchise Pokémon Black and White tried sequels set five years after the titles Pokémon Black 2 and Pokémon White 2.
While this pair of games was innovative, in reality they did not offer much change to their predecessors Pokémon Black and White. Yes, the story was different for the player, but ultimately these games did not excite fans the same way previous generations had with their third iterations. However, Pokémon Sun and Moon do offer an entirely new game for players to enjoy.
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How A New Sequel Could Play Out
A sequel to Pokémon Sun and Moon could align more with traditional Pokémon games, which tended to utilize Gym Badges and Pokémon League. If set five years after the current games, for example, the sequels could see the player being one of the first trainers to challenge and earn eight Gym Badges and face the league.
With the Elite Four and Pokémon Champion already in place (from Pokémon Sun and Moon), who from the games could fill the positions of the Gym Leaders? The most logical choice is to use the Trial Captains and add two new characters to make a total of eight, as one captain is upgraded to the Elite Four in the games. However, Guzma and Plumeria from #TeamSkull both have perfect teams to become leaders for Bug and Poison-type Gyms, which would also round the number up nicely to a total of eight.
The Pokémon League Champion could even be changed to the male playable character for the sequel to Pokémon Sun, and the female playable character for Pokémon Moon's sequel. However, some may feel that the trainers Red and Blue deserve to be the League Champions for the games, as their appearance in Sun and Moon definitely hit the right nostalgia buttons for many Pokémon fans. A set of sequel games would also allow for an increase on new aspects that were introduced in Sun and Moon.
Aloha From Alola?
The #Alola Forms could be increased, and perhaps even see some Pokémon outside of the first generation being given new Alola Forms. So far all of the Alola Form Pokémon are from the first generation's Pokémon Red and Blue. Perhaps sequels could extend this to (at least) the second generation of Pokémon and add more type changes for veteran players to learn. They could even be really brave and take a set of starter Pokémon from one generation of the franchise and give them new Alola Forms.
The unique Z-Moves could also be increased in a set of sequels. At present, only a handful of Pokémon have their own unique and special Z-Move. This would not be unprecedented as Pokémon Alpha Sapphire and #OmegaRuby increased the number of Pokémon with the ability to Mega Evolve from Pokémon X and Y. With how few Pokémon have received an exclusive Z-Move, it is difficult to not believe that more are planned for future games.
Team Skull could also see development in a sequel set of games. In Pokémon Sun and Moon, their only real purpose is to be an obstacle for the player to face off against. They do not have a set mission, unlike past evil teams from the Pokémon franchise. Their purpose could literally be anything, from wanting rare Pokémon, to getting their hands on a source that powers the Z-Crystals. If a sequel set of games is made, it would only make the entire Team Skull threat seem more riveting, rather than simply being in the way.
With the Sun and Moon games fresh on the market, it is safe to assume we won't get a new set of games for at least another year. But given how unique Sun and Moon are to the Pokémon franchise, it is possible to expect a sequel coming next on the Poké horizon.