pokemon ultra sun and moon trailer analysis
The recent Nintendo Direct was filled with games that will release on Nintendo consoles both this year and early next. But they started everything with Pokémon. We haven’t learned much about Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon, but this trailer gave us a solid look at what’s new for this return to Alola. Not only do we have a better look at some of the new locations, but brand new Ultra Beasts as well. There’s more hidden here though so it’s time to call forth the old Analysis Machine to see what secrets and details it can find. We begin with a familiar shot of the trainer running along the path near his house.
It has all the familiar trappings we’ve come to recognize by now including the Wingull flying above. However, as the scene changes to the night, it’s no longer a Wingull flying above the trainer but a Murkrow. Murkrow could be caught in Sun & Moon though they were only located in the Vast Poni Canyon. The fact that they’re flying above could indicate that we can now catch them on Melemele Island too. This would indicate at least a remix of sorts of the Alola Pokédex.
And there’s even more evidence of this thanks to the special Rockruff that’s being given away for those who purchase the game in the first several months. During the trailer that the Pokémon Company released, we get to see what this Rockruff is like. In Ultra Sun it’ll have the move Fire Fang while the Ultra Moon version will have Thunder Fang. The rest of its attacks are Tackle, Bite, and Happy Hour while its Ability will be Own Tempo, and it’ll be holding a Focus Band. However, this screen also shows that its Pokédex number is 126 while in Sun & Moon it was 103. This could either mean that the order of Pokémon has changed such as Murkrow being earlier in the Pokédex since it could possibly be caught on Melemele Island or that other Pokémon are now possible to catch in Alola. There’s no way to know for sure yet, but we’d lean toward a combination of both. Otherwise, Lycanroc has a new unique Z-Move, Splintered Stormshards that all forms of Lycanroc can perform.
And each form has a different background: the sun for Midday Form, the moon for Midnight Form, and the setting sun for Dusk Form. It’s a cool little touch. Finally, the Z-Move dispels any terrain effects while also damaging the enemy. Another new scene involves the Starters rushing in front of the Trainer. As we see later, it’s to protect him from an attacking Yungoos. So it would seem that you choose one of them to give commands to and eventually form a connection as your first Pokémon. We still don’t quite know what events lead to this change in selection though.
But there does seem to be plenty of new content including places to visit. We pointed out a few of these additions during our map analysis, but now we have a chance to see them in-game. The first is the new path next to the Melemele Island hotel that leads down to a beach. At the top is a new Surfer NPC while on the beach itself is a sign that likely states what this beach is called.
More of the beach is showcased while the titles are on-screen making it difficult to decipher precise details though fortunately there are other scenes showing more. We can see however that there are plenty of people gathered on this beach for some kind of event. And that event appears to be a surfing contest. There’s the surfer NPCs, a stack of surfboards nearby, and a contest board. Mostly importantly, there’s a Mantine nearby with Ride gear equipped. This would indicate that, of course, Mantine is a brand new Ride Pokémon for you to eventually call. Maybe it’s even earned through this contest? The question is, what does it do? We already have Lapras for Surf and Sharpedo to break rocks on the water, so what would Mantine’s Ability be? Could it be something like the Dive or Waterfall HMs? Or could Mantine be replacing Lapras entirely? After all, there are images of it all around, both on the contest board and on one of the flags near the surf boards.
It seems to be kind of a big deal. But we’ll have to wait and see exactly what kind of role it’ll have as a Ride Pokémon. It’s also worth quickly noting that this is well after you receive your Starter and there’s no sign of it following behind. So unless you can choose not to have that feature active, it looks like it won’t be in Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon. Another new location is what appears to be a Pikachu ranch. It’s referred to as the Valley of Pikachu during the trailer and while we see many of the same scenes from before, there are a few new things to highlight. First of all, this area is entered from the south. It doesn’t provide enough clues to where this valley could be, but it’s another piece of the puzzle. Otherwise, you can interact and play with the Pikachu though we don’t know if it’s for any other reason than to be cute.
The trailer also detailed how the story would be slightly different this time around. It seems that shortly after Solgaleo or Lunala appear in the game, they are confronted by Necrozma and a battle ensues. Necrozma is the winner and absorbs their light, taking over their body. The new Forms for the Legendaries are actually both Necrozma: Dusk Mane Necrozma for Solgaleo and Dawn Wings Necrozma for Lunala. This leads to the question of whether Necrozma will be attracted to these two throughout the course of the story or only appear then to take them over. It’s impossible to say for now, but we do see Dawn Wings Necrozma flying toward an Ultra Wormhole at the end of the trailer. Could it escape into Ultra Space and force you to follow after it in order to rescue the Legendaries? It would be pretty cool to explore this new realm even further than you do in Sun & Moon. Perhaps it really will be like Platinum when you visited the Distortion World. Not everything about the story will be different though as the same scene with Lusamine and the appearance of an Ultra Wormhole at Aether Paradise still happens.
So it’s very likely the Necrozma elements are in addition to what we’ve seen before. But Ultra Space has one surprise in store for us, brand new Ultra Beasts in the form of UB Burst and UB Assembly. This marks the first time new Pokémon were introduced in a new version of an existing generation. Before it had always been a new Form or a new Mega Evolution. It’s a big step and these Ultra Beasts seem to fit right in. Burst is exclusive to Ultra Sun and appears to be based upon a dandelion. To attack, it even throws the ball that seemed to be its head at enemies and explodes. We’d guess it would immediately grow a new one though. Assembly is exclusive to Ultra Moon and is absolutely gigantic, casting a shadow that dwarves Hala and Hau. And that in itself is a new scene. We saw Hala confront another Ultra Beast in Sun and Moon, but Hau wasn’t there. This would indicate that the two are at least somewhat involved in this new scenario. But it could also be an expansion of the post-game Ultra Beast quest found in the original games.
Either way, it looks as if each brick on Assembly is an individual eye making it seem as if it’s always aware of what’s happening. The name even indicates that it’s made of smaller beings coming together as one, similar to Wishiwashi’s School Form. It might not seem like much at first glance, but the changes that Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon are bringing to Pokémon are starting to become more apparent. We’ve still only gotten a small taste of its potential, but we’re nevertheless excited to see what else it can do.
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