Pokemon Let's Go's Battle Animation Showcase Has Some Fans Disappointed

Pokemon Let's Go's Battle Animation Showcase Has Some Fans Disappointed

These Pokemon move in familiar ways.

Last week, Japan's official Pokémon YouTube channel released a handful of videos demonstrating how some popular attacks look in Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu and Let's Go Eevee for the Nintendo Switch. While the battle visuals look crisp and clean, some Pokémon fans are disappointed the critters' battle animations are stuck in the last generation.

Serebii stitched together the videos uploaded to Pokémon Japan's YouTube account, giving us a single reel of battle footage. We get to see a Machamp use Seismic Toss on a Magikarp (RIP), two Tauroses use Hyper Beam on each other, a Mega Charizard X use Flame Charge on an Exeggutor (double RIP), and more.

If you're expecting Pokémon's first shift into HD visuals to bring revolutionary new animations, you might be in for a let-down. Most of the animations the Pokémon use against one another in Pokémon Let's Go are similar to what we saw on the Nintendo 3DS. In other words, the Pokémon don't bodily attack one another so much as they "throw" attacks from across the Gym. More often than not, it's the Pokémon's projectile attacks that connect. Everything else is an illusion.

When our sister site Nintendolife reported on the new Pokémon Let's Go footage, the comment section quickly filled up with disappointed fans. "The fights still seem really primitive, like they haven't evolved much since the original Pokémon games," writes "McHaggis." Another commenter calling themselves "justin233" agrees. "I really hope the 2019 game is better than this one (looks)," they say. "The battles still seem so stiff and archaic."

The comment section for Serebii's video upload is likewise packed with detractors. "It is very sad that Pokémon STILL don't move towards each other and THEN attack (like in Pokémon Battle Revolution), but instead remain 'confined' to the position they are standing on the whole time," writes "Infinity Master." "I really hope Gen 8 takes more from Pokémon Battle Revolution not just in terms of attack animations, but in terms of actual graphics / Pokémon models too!"

Pokemon Let's Go's battle animations are, in a word, traditional.

The Pokémon series has always been a stickler for tradition, but it's not as if Game Freak is phoning in Pokémon Let's Go: Notice the Gym backgrounds are based on Pokémon Go's gyms. I do agree it's high time for "real" Pokémon battle animations, though. Given Pokémon Let's Go's roots in Pokémon Red / Blue / Yellow, I wouldn't be surprised if Niantic wanted to keep the game traditional-looking for nostalgia purposes. I'm eager to see what Gen 8 has in store, though.

November isn't too far away. Read our guides on everything there is to know about Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu and Let's Go Eevee to prepare yourself for the big day.

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Nadia Oxford

Staff Writer

Nadia has been writing about games for so long, only the wind and the rain (or the digital facsimiles thereof) remember her true name. She's written for Nerve, About.com, Gamepro, IGN, 1UP, PlayStation Official Magazine, and other sites and magazines that sling words about video games. She co-hosts the Axe of the Blood God podcast, where she mostly screams about Dragon Quest.

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