Pokémon Sun and Moon: Battle Royal Has My Attention

Pokémon Sun and Moon: Battle Royal Has My Attention

But not for the reason you might expect.

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After teasing us with a glimpse of Zelda, Nintendo decided to go over to Pokémon Sun and Moon for a while, which is captive programming at their best. What they had to show was pretty standard fare, but one element did catch my eye.

Sun and Moon will apparently introduce "Battle Royal"—a new free-for-all mode that pits multiple combatants against one another. It appears to follow in the tradition of Double Battles, Triple Battles, and co-op battles in offering a change of pace without necessarily superseding the traditional one-vs-one gameplay (though Doubles have become the official competitive metagame).

I actually kind of doubt that Battle Royal will have a major impact on competitive battling, mostly because it's less of a chess match than a no-holds-barred beatdown. I could see a situation in which a bunch of computer opponents gang up on your uber-powerful monster, which would finally resolve the question of why enemies only ever attack one at a time, but that's speculation on my part.

No, what interests me about Battle Royal is that there appears to be a full-blown Battle Royal hall, which makes me think that there might be a much-expanded version in the postgame ala The Pokémon World Tournament. Maybe we'll even get the Battle Frontier back (hah... haha... sob).

Whatever it turns out to be, I'm mostly just hoping that Pokémon Sun and Moon has some good, meaty postgame content for higher level players. Lately, there seems to be an assumption on the part of the developers that high-level players will just go play competitively; but for those of us who are retired from the competitive scene, it would be nice to have some powerful AI opponents to fight. The last time Pokémon really nailed the postgame content was Black 2/White 2; which, not coincidentally, is probably my very favorite Pokémon game ever.

I'll cling to whatever hope I can, I guess. With Sun and Moon feeling like something of a placeholder ahead of the next-next-generation of Pokémon, I'm really hoping that Game Freak goes all out with this one. Battle Royal is a positive sign in that regard.

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Kat Bailey

Editor in Chief

Kat Bailey is a former freelance writer and contributor to publications including 1UP, IGN, GameSpot, GamesRadar, and EGM. Her fondest memories as a journalist are at GamePro, where she hosted RolePlayer's Realm and had legal access to the term "Protip." She is USgamer's resident mecha enthusiast, Pokemon Master, and Minnesota Vikings nut (skol).

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