Pokemon Sun and Moon (opens in new tab) are less than a month away, but we still have plenty of unanswered questions about the latest collect-and-battle adventure. Thankfully we were able to catch director Shigeru Ohmori to give us the inside scoop (via an interpreter) on the new ideas Game Freak is trying out for Alola. Watch the full interview above or read on for the biggest details.
Is there more to the Z-Moves than being super powerful?
"With the Z-Moves we've had our staff take a lot of time considering the battle system and making sure that it really is balanced, adjusting the power of the moves, the effects of the moves, and everything like that. So it certainly isn't the case that just by using these Z-Moves you're going to absolutely win the battle and everything's going to be very easy. There's also the restriction that you can only use a Z-Move once per battle. So this idea of deciding when is the best time to activate this Z-Move and use it is actually going to, we think, add a really deep layer to the battles and the strategy behind it.
"The Z-Moves themselves can be used by any Pokemon at all. So hopefully this will give rise to people using even more Pokemon than before, a wider range than we've seen previously. Perhaps some Pokemon that weren't particularly popular in battles up until now, people will find new ways to use these Pokemon and really make a big difference in battle depending on which Z-Moves they want to use with these Pokemon."
Why do Pokemon Sun and Moon take place at opposite times of day?
"One big change in this idea of time we've got for Sun and Moon is that Sun and Moon are set 12 hours apart. So in Pokemon Sun, you'll see the time will reflect the actual time outside, the standard time it is where you are. Whereas Pokemon Moon is set 12 hours further ahead, so it'll be nighttime when it's day where you're playing. This lets you find different Pokemon at the same time of day. So for example a player playing Pokemon Sun might wander around and find a Yungoos during the day. But at the same time a player playing Pokemon Moon, though it's daytime in the real world, they're gonna find nighttime Pokemon in the game. So they might encounter an Alola Rattata for example.
"With all of these different things we're hoping to really encourage players to communicate with one another. They're going to see these different experiences and talk about them, trade, perhaps battle through these different but also shared experiences that they can really enjoy and get together over."
What's the game about, really?
"The basic idea is that of life. One thing we thought of is the sun, obviously vital for life. And the moon affects gravity and the rhythms of living things. All of these different aspects inspired the way we chose to go about this game and the theme, and the titles of the game itself."
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