Nintendo confirmed the rumors last month of its flagship handheld 3DS console is being treated to a second Pokemon generation with Pokemon Sun and Moon at the same time while we are hearing that Nintendo NX is being prepared for a release later this year.
For most, it wasn’t really a surprise – not because there had been fairly accurate leaks or because Nintendo had registered the trademarks, but mainly because the series is popular and was Nintendo’s shot at improving its much-questioned situation in the gaming industry.
Pokemon has been for over one-and-a-half decades one of the most popular brands, and particularly shines greatly for the series of excellent RPG games that debuted on the GameBoy, and have been a constant presence ever since. With every new generation of Pokemon comes a set of new games, and with every game Nintendo makes plenty of sales and has lots of success.
However, for many folks it is indeed a surprise that Sun and Moon will be coming to Nintendo 3DS this holiday. The reason is rather simple: Nintendo NX.
Pokemon Sun and Moon on Nintendo 3DS, How Does it Affect Nintendo NX?
The Wii U’s struggles are no secret, and despite the 3DS overall being an excellent and popular handheld console (arguably the most popular at the moment), its sales are at a downward trend. That’s had an impact on Nintendo’s forecasts, and that’s why releasing the NX is a necessity for the firm instead of a luxury.
There have been plenty of theories of what kind of a platform the NX exactly is. We won’t know for sure till this year’s E3, but there have been various theories regarding what it is and when it’ll arrive.
It’s true that nothing about the Nintendo’s next console is known aside from its codename NX and that it is in production, but it has been theorized as an eventual simultaneous replacement for both the Wii U as well as the 3DS.
There are also theories that the NX is expected to arrive in 2016. With the arrival of Pokemon Sun and Moon, one of these theories is certainly wrong. After all, it makes no sense to launch a new Pokemon game while the Nintendo NX is arriving at the same time.
Let’s not forget that Pokemon and The Legend of Zelda are the two biggest franchises and two biggest selling points for Nintendo, so it would only be the firm jeopardizing the sales of its new console if it were releasing it during the same time as the release of Pokemon Sun and Moon.
Of course, the simplest counter to this is that the NX will not be releasing this year, which indeed makes sense. The NX would never be a known entity, but Nintendo was forced to usher the console’s name in front of investors to assure them they would continue to develop new platforms.
Additionally, the NX is only going to be revealed as an official product this summer – launching it a mere few months later is unprecedented, and frankly unexpected.
Having said that, Nintendo is well-known for allowing past hardware work with new systems, as evidenced by the Wii’s Wiimotes functioning on the Wii U.
It could be that the NX is indeed hitting stores this holiday, but will allow the 3DS to be integrated into it, making the consoles relevant. It would certainly be a boost to the sales if having an NX running with a 3DS somehow would grant additional features to players.
Tying the launch of Pokemon Sun and Moon to the launch of the NX would be very clever indeed. Personally, I feel that the Nintendo NX will not debut this year, and that it will indeed look to unify handheld and home consoles sometime in the future.
Whether the truth is similar or the opposite, Pokemon Sun and Moon will definitely prolong the life of the 3DS, and certainly make all theories related to the NX a tad more complex.