Eurogamer cites multiple sources who claim that the project, codenamed Pokemon Stars, will offer the standard Pokemon adventure that fans of the series have come to expect, suggesting it will be the first “main” entry to appear on a Nintendo home console.
It’s reportedly being developed by Game Freak, who has of course worked on every main Pokemon entry since the Game Boy. The sources say that the studio had been working on the Switch edition for a while next to its development of the 3DS version, but that it eventually shifted resources and focus to the portable version to get it ready to launch. It hit Nintendo 3DS this past week.
There are many other interesting tidbits to come out of the report. The Pokemon bank app will allows players to trade Pokemon between Sun/Moon and the so-called Stars version, while the Switch version will get additional, unique Pokemon for console players. It will also be set on the same map as the 3DS version.
Unfortunately, Stars won’t be ready for Switch‘s March 2017 launch. The good news, however, is that it’s being planned for a mid-to-late 2017 release, so if the report is to be believed, we’ll see a Pokemon console game within the next 12 months.
It could prove to be the system seller Nintendo needs to reclaim some of the home console market share it lost with the Wii U. The Pokemon fanbase is huge, even attracting primary Xbox and PlayStation gamers back to Nintendo platforms whenever a new entry is released. Nintendo has already shipped 10 million copies of Sun and Moon, with sell-in reflective of market demand at retail.
The Switch’s unique design and portability may also make for a great way to introduce Pokemon to the console landscape.