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Precious Pokémon News

November 21 is the day to mark on your calendar. That's the day when all of Japan will grind to a halt, when people will abandon their jobs and schools to swarm gathered by the thousands to the local shopping district, when store shelves will be ravaged bare by the screaming masses, when even the smallest of children will be seen battling each other in the streets...

A doomsday prophesy? Nope, it's just the day that the next Pokémon game ships.

Nintendo this week announced that the next Pokémon games, the first for Game Boy Advance, will be called Pokémon Ruby and Pokémon Sapphire and will be shipped in Japan on November 21, 2002. No news has been officially announced regarding a US release of the duo (although Nintendo originally expected to launch both the Japanese and American games within 2002 -- it'd be cutting it close with a late Nov. Japanese release, but the plan may be for a more global Pokémon release than last year's year-long wait for Gold/Silver here.)

As many fans of Pokémon have already noticed, the gems Nintendo has attached to the newest Pokémon games -- the red Ruby and the blue Sapphire -- relate directly to the original Red/Blue versions of the first Pokémon games (since the series is kicking off anew on the GBA). Along with the new-start names comes info that Nintendo intends to make the game a new start in a few more ways. First out is news that the battle system has been completely changed from the original Pokémon style -- now players will pick just two Pokémon for their team (or at least will have instances where just a team of two will be vital -- there may still be a 3-Pokémon choice for your battle team), but will be able to use both Pokémon in battle together. Hudson's Robopon 2 had a similar innovation, where you had to balance your team of pocket monsters for best effect (Hudson also had special moves available when you had the right combination of monsters, a trick Nintendo may well make use of also).

In addition to the original 100 Pokémon and the 151 added to G/S, Nintendo will be unleashing 100 new Pokémon creatures in the Ruby/Sapphire games. Nintendo's Poké has unveiled a few new creatures for the first time, making it a total of 11 known R/S Pokémon out of the flock of 100 new creatures. Here's your first look at some of the new Pokémon, as well as a round-up of the ones that we've seen so far from the upcoming GBA games.

Pelipper ** (NEW)

TYPE: Water Bird
HEIGHT: 3' 11"
WEIGHT: 62 lbs.

Samehader (NEW)

TYPE: Ferocious
HEIGHT: 5' 10"
WEIGHT: 195 lbs.

Kinococo ** (NEW)

TYPE: Mushroom
HEIGHT: 1' 04"
WEIGHT: 9.9 lbs.

Yomawaru ** (NEW)

TYPE: Ghost
HEIGHT: 1' 07"
WEIGHT: 33 lbs.

Volbeat (NEW)

TYPE: ?Grass?
HEIGHT: 2' 03"
WEIGHT: 39 lbs.

Wynaut ** (NEW)

TYPE: ?Psychic?
HEIGHT: 1' 04" (Tail is 1')
WEIGHT: 31 lbs.

Wailmer ** (NEW)

TYPE: ?Water?

Kecleon ** (NEW)

TYPE: ?Chameleon?

Azurill ** (NEW)

TYPE: Water

Latias ** (NEW)

TYPE: Legendary Flying Pokémon
HEIGHT: 4' 07"
WEIGHT: 89 lbs.

Latios ** (NEW)

TYPE: Legendary Flying Pokémon
HEIGHT: 6' 07"
WEIGHT: 133 lbs.

** NOTE - Names marked with asterisks are from the Japanese version of the game and are subject to change.

That should be about all for you Pokémaniacs reading this for the moment, but look for Nintendo to make steady Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire unveilings right up until the Nov. 21 Japanese release date. Poké will be revealing new characters from the game each month leading up to the due date, so stay tuned for more.

source Pocket IGN

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