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Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Could Bridge The Gap To Pokemon Legends

GameRant logo GameRant 6/26/2022 Martin Wood
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After Game Freak's latest trailer showcasing more of Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, fans have been abuzz with speculation and theories about what the new games could have in store for the world of Pokemon and how they might make their own mark on its lore and legacy. The biggest and arguably most significant among these ideas is the belief that Pokemon Scarlet and Violet are gearing up to juxtapose narratives of past versus future respectively, and with the ever-growing mountain of evidence to support this theory, it's getting harder for even skeptics to ignore.

But there could actually be a bigger motive behind Game Freak's decision to make its first entries into the ninth generation of its Pokemon games focus on both the past and the future. With the resounding success and fan appreciation for Game Freak's Pokemon Legends: Arceus, the studio now has a chasm to bridge between Pokemon's newfound historical potential and its modern-day series forever heading forwards. It's a gap that Pokemon Scarlet and Violet could very cleverly fill if done right.

RELATED: Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Should Not Drop the Same Features as Pokemon Legends: Arceus

Explaining the Past-Future Theory

Though completely unconfirmed at this point, there has been a slew of details Pokemon fans have picked up on that have led this theory to take root and grow exponentially. For instance, Pokemon Scarlet and Violet will be the first games with exclusive Pokemon Professors, both of whom had very distinctive fashion choices from Turo's cybernetic bodysuit to Sada's prehistoric-inspired garb. Additionally, their names appear to derive from "futuro" and "pasada" which are Spanish for future and past respectively, complementing their attire and the games they belong to.

By extension of this, Scarlet appears to be poised to focus on the past, while Violet will look to the future, since the mascot legendaries of Koraidon and Miraidon also have their namesakes similarly inspired: taken from Japanese, "korai" means ancient, while "mirai" means future. With both Pokemon's own designs, Koraidon seeming more beastly and prehistoric while Miraidon has been dubbed the jet dragon by fans. It's growing increasingly clear that some definite distinctions are being made by Game Freak between each game version. At this point, why Game Freak is actually setting these games as direct opposites more than other version exclusives previously seen remains unclear, but it seems unanimous among fans that there's Past-Future theming going on within Scarlet and Violet.

Connecting to Pokemon Legends: Arceus

One of Game Freak's biggest challenges is now going to face is how it incorporates the Pokemon and certain features from Legends: Arceus into new games in the modern-day setting. The most obvious issue is how will Game Freak reintroduce "Hisuian forms" of this new region and evolutions into modern games when lore-wise these are Pokemon that adapted and ultimately disappeared from existence.

Ordinarily, it was incredibly easy for Game Freak to include passing references to regional forms of Pokemon in its games, even offering in-game trades with NPCs to obtain other regional forms or allowing players to transfer their own Pokemon between games. But historical versions of Pokemon present the problem of how these Pokemon either survived or were revived from extinction, and while fans may have their own ideas of "time variants," players are still in the dark.

This is where Scarlet and Violet's Past-Future theory comes in, as its focus on time and the history or future of Pokemon could help lay the foundations for Pokemon Legends to become a more grounded and successful series moving forwards. Together, the games' stories could draw in elements from Pokemon Legends: Arceus such as Laventon's pokedex or the various regional forms and evolutions, and treat them as if they were being "rediscovered," inviting the player to go out and conduct their own research, develop their own pokedex, and discover more untold secrets behind Pokemon. This may even go further and develop more groundwork for new Pokemon Legends entries just as Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl had hinted at Legends: Arceus, explaining the "future" half of the Past-Future theory for where new games might venture and explore.

RELATED: Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Should Revisit Past Evolutionary Lines like Legends: Arceus Did

The Pros And Cons For Scarlet, Violet, And Legends

While it's exciting to believe that Pokemon Scarlet and Violet is going to be Game Freak's most ambitious entry into the Pokemon series yet, breaking all sorts of traditions and norms from its professors to its open world, this doesn't mean that it will solve all the challenges ahead. To start, Pokemon Legends is not a traditional mainline Pokemon entry nor is it the first to see commercial success, but it would be the first to be tied into the traditional series should the Past-Future theory pan out as described. It would in essence create a two-tier series for Game Freak, a benefit if it wanted to slow down game development and capitalize on the rich lore it already has, but also a disadvantage as it would mean dividing the studio's attention and ideas.

Another potential hurdle would be ensuring that the version exclusivity of Scarlet and Violet wouldn't jeopardize the effort to include Legends into its story. For instance, Scarlet seems to be the game that will take ancient history as its core focus, and if Violet will look more to the future, then it begs the question of how Legends can factor into a game not looking towards the past.

Fortunately, it isn't out of the question that Violet could share just enough of its content with Scarlet, since players have seen how the likes of Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire were significantly different to each other, such as having two opposing teams, but still remain relatively uniform in what they deliver. The only downside to this would be just how different will each version be, as from what audiences know so far, Scarlet and Violet could be the most contrary of all version exclusives seen to date.

However, despite some of what could be many challenges that Game Freak would face in elevating Pokemon Legends to coincide with its mainline series due to its positive reception and success, it is still the smartest move to make. Fans are already speculating what future Pokemon Legends games could look like for other regions such as Johto and creating fan art of what this would look like, owing to the huge popularity of Game Freak's latest spin-off series.

More Pokemon Legends games are already highly anticipated, so Game Freak could be making some high-level plays here by essentially killing two Pidgeys with one stone. By making Pokemon Scarlet and Violet focus on the past and future so Pokemon Legends could be codified into Pokemon canon, simultaneously solving the challenge of bringing past forms of Pokemon to future games while keeping the door open for future Pokemon Legends games.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet are set to release on November 18 for Nintendo Switch.

MORE: Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Regional Forms Should Avoid Gen 1


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