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Weekly Article – Omitting a Pokémon in a Generation

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(Sorry, I don’t have any idea on what picture to use)


As there are more and more Pokémon being introduced, there are two things that could happen: the first thing is that the developers could include every Pokémon previously introduced so that every fan can enjoy the new games with their old favourites, which will require more effort. The second is that they could omit certain Pokémon from the new games to save time.

You may be thinking that the latter could not possibly happen, but this could be a possibility if there are just too many Pokémon, that is to say, over two thousand of them. The developers considered the possibility that there will be that many, but they didn’t actually express the idea of omitting any Pokémon. It is a possibility that could be inferred from their concern.

The type of Pokémon that could very well be omitted could include ones that are not very popular, or ones that players could live without. It might even include some that have expired copyrights that aren’t renewed. As you see, there are several reasons that the idea of omitting certain Pokémon could be good, but there are other reasons the same idea could be a bad one. More are shown below, so please read on to find out more.



The Disadvantages

The first thing I will discuss are the disadvantages of this idea, because a Pokémon fan is likely to agree that there is a disadvantage in omitting Pokémon in the main games.

If, say, this plan were to go through, one clear disadvantage is that players who actually like said unpopular Pokémon will dearly miss them, because even the most unpopular Pokémon has its fans. Amusingly, if the Pokémon is unpopular enough, it will be popular among fans, as Dunsparce had proven. A Pokémon’s omission could also spark a popularity in that Pokémon that it might otherwise didn’t get. As the saying goes: “You don’t know what you have until it’s gone”.

Because a certain Pokémon was omitted, it would make a game feel less complete. You see, Pokémon up to now, always have every older Pokémon included, so when at least one species is left behind, the pattern is broken, and something won’t feel right if players can’t manage to bring someone from the older gang.

If you need some proof, look at Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, where players can’t bring their older Pokémon. At that time, no one knew that Bulbasaur could be brought along, at least until a later game rectified this. The inability to use older Pokémon gave rise to certain players dropping off interest mainly because their favourites didn’t make it into Hoenn’s Dex.

You could argue that spin-offs do not include every Pokémon, which is true. Some favourite games like Pokémon Snap and Pokémon Conquest don’t include every Pokémon introduced in the then-current generation in their games, but the status of an official game is different. The official game is a representation of the complete ecosystem of the Pokémon, while the spin-off is a representation of a new idea that couldn’t be done in the official game.

Due to the main focus on the idea in spinoffs, it is not expected that every Pokémon makes an appearance, save for some favourites, unlike the main game’s requirement to act as a sort of framework for the games. This is why you don’t see custom-made Pokémon in spin-offs.


The Advantages

As with everything with a disadvantage, there are always advantages. The idea of omitting certain Pokémon from the main games do have certain advantages, as much as this idea is considered a catastrophic one.

If certain Pokémon could be omitted, it would give the designers a good idea on what Pokémon they could omit. Some overpowered ones would be one, since they might have upset the balance. This would mean that they didn’t need to create a new advantageous Pokémon to combat the powerful one, saving energy for something else.

Speaking of saving energy, by omitting certain Pokémon, the developers didn’t need to exert as much energy in animating, modelling and balancing the old Pokémon, which would save them time and energy. It does help them in this way, but the reward of including every past Pokémon serves a far greater reward in the long run.

Another type of Pokémon that could be omitted are ones that are there for novelty value, such as Unown, since they don’t serve much function other than in their introductory games. Since their introduction only serves to showcase a certain function, some players would understandably think their removal won’t change much. If they have an important function, such as Ditto the universal breeder, then they would be viewed as a necessity.

Perhaps if there are really a lot of Pokémon to choose from, certain players might not even notice that older Pokémon are omitted because there are so many of them that they might be spoilt for choice. If those players discovered that said Pokémon is excluded, this has a dual effect of either them taking a fascination of the excluded Pokémon or disliking them because they believe that the developers didn’t like them much to exclude them.

Omitting certain Pokémon could be seen as a good idea to remove any Pokémon that serve the same function, such as the numerous early fliers such as either Pidgey or Pidove. While they may have different functions, but to some people, less is more.

Perhaps removing the Pokémon might be done because they don’t suit the environment they’re in. This is more of a PokéDex issue rather than a Generation issue, since that doesn’t stop Pokémon from being traded over.


The Impossibility

Even with certain advantages in omitting even a few Pokémon for at least one Pokémon, it is not likely that this idea goes through. This possibility is not likely to occur in the near future, or probably in our lifetime. If we go by a rate of an average of 100 additions over 13 Generations spanning at an average of 4 years each (to reach around 2000 species), then it would be 52 years. We don’t know if Pokémon will still exist by then, or if it does, if there is a solution to the ever-increasing roster of Pokémon. That is to say that it is possible that we don’t have to worry about developers omitting Pokémon.

The recently announced Pokémon Bank allows one to store a huge quantity of Pokémon that will last for Generations to come. This solution is incredible because now the designers don’t need to come up with new ways to transfer Pokémon from one Generation to the next. Because the Bank stores every Pokémon in the book, it won’t be intuitive to discriminate Pokémon from being in the new games, since every game shares the service.

A more tragic possibility is that we might not even see the day when Pokémon would need to have to resort to doing this, as in, the games stopped being profitable overall and we didn’t make it to the theoritical 2000 Pokémon. This would mean newer players won’t experience the joys of Pokémon, but then there isn’t a concern for the need to exclude older Pokémon.

Perhaps the future Generation of players could also see the value of preserving every Pokémon in the book, and if these players become the developers of Pokémon, they could even make it so that it is obligatory to include every Pokémon so far, even if it takes a lot of effort to do so, so that the new generation of players will see the old generation of Pokémon.


Even if the idea of omitting older Pokémon in the new games is unfathomable and isn’t a good idea at this time, it might be possible that there might be a time where this could be a possibility. I must admit that for every advantage I point out, I felt the need to put in some side effect since they really do have something to account for in the end. Still, let’s hope that no matter what, every new game gets every Pokémon we have so far because no Pokémon leaves behind. I hope you enjoyed reading this article as much as I have writing it.

Thanks for reading.

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