With all the hype about Pokémon Go, some may have forgotten that another main series entry will be hitting shelves this November. Pokémon Sun and Moon, set in the Alola region, is based on the Hawaiian islands, and like the actual islands, sees new forms of original Pokémon.
The new trailer, released by The Pokémon Company today, displays new forms of Sandshrew, Exeggutor, and Vulpix. These classic Pokémon have been separated from their mainland counterparts for (presumably) hundreds of years, and have undergone Darwinian evolution – not Pokémon evolution – to better suit their environment.
While Hawaii may be known as a firey island, the Alola region appears to be a mixture of sunny shores and frozen mountains. Both Sandshrew and Vulpix have adapted to the freezing temperatures by developing thicker shells and coats. As well as these two basic Pokémon, their evolutions are also adapted to their environment. Ninetails and Sandslash have cool new looks, and appear to have powerful new attacks.They also have a new type, and have a slightly different look – both are ice type as well as another – steel for Sandslash and fairy for Ninetails. Exeggutor has probably had the short straw from its time separated from the mainland regions. The Alola form has an extremely long neck, more similar to natural palm trees. It’s also gained the dragon type to go with its new form.
According to the video, the Alola region will be split into four different islands. On each island, a different form of the new bird Pokémon Oricorio can be found. The bird takes on different styles based on dance types, each with a different element type. Oricorio’s ability is Dancer, which allows it to copy other Pokémon’s dance moves. This means using Swords Dance or Quiver Dance against an Oricorio will see it gain the effects as well, without using up a move in battle.
The Pokémon Company have also released footage of a host of new Pokémon. The video first highlights the rock and flying type Minior. This strange looking, orb-like Pokémon has the ability Shields Down, which sees its rocky outer shell fall off, and one of four different coloured cores revealed. It’s not clear what benefit Minior gains from it being out of its shell, or whether the different colour cores have different movesets in battle. Gumshoos, the mongoose-like evolution of Yungoos, has also been revealed… to look startlingly like Donald Trump. This Pokémon stakes out its prey, and can go for long periods of time without eating. The new donkey Pokémon, Mudbray is said to enjoy frolicking in the mud, and may not listen to trainers’ orders if it cannot. They were once apparently found all over the world, until they were over-hunted, and now only survive on the Alolan islands. Mudbray will eventually evolve into Mudsdale, a Shire Horse Pokémon that can help trainers around the Alolan islands. The final two Alolan Pokémon are Fomantis and Lurantis. The basic form, Fomantis, stores up energy while it sleeps in the day, and then comes awake at night. In battle, it excels at long range moves such as Solar Beam and Razor Leaf. However, it avoids Solar Beam wherever possible, as this uses up all the energy it gains during the day. Lurantis, the second stage evolution, can use the brand new move Solar Blade. This move stores up solar energy on the first turn, before slicing through opponents on the second.
Finally, the video demonstrates some of the new features of Sun and Moon, including new ways to get around the Alola region. Previously, in Pokémon X and Y, trainers could ride Rhydon and Gogoat to get to normally unexplorable areas. In Sun and Moon, this is a more prominent feature. Certain Pokémon will allow trainers to climbon their backs and get to new areas, including a flyable Charizard and rideable Mudsdale. New in Sun and Moon are Z-Moves. These powerful moves are only available once per battle, and require a new Mega Stone-like Bracelet. For each different Pokémon type, there’s a different move, so there is likely to be a different Z-stone (or some similar collectable) to be found.