The latest supposed leak making the rounds is that Pokemon Sword and Shield will contain spirit armor, according to Chinese social media.
Pokemon Sword and Shield news
Since Pokemon Sword and Shield was revealed on February 27 (Pokemon Day), there hasn't been any further news released. Immediately after the reveal rumors were plentiful, but have died down to almost non-existent levels over the past couple of weeks.
Perhaps the biggest rumor (or leak) to come out about Pokemon Sword and Shield actually did so before the release. In a post on 4chan, it was revealed that armored evolutions would be coming to Pokemon's 2019 game. The post gained credit and a lot of attention as it correctly predicted the name and region of the game before it was announced.
The latest potential leak contradicts this information, though. There are a few options at play here.
Firstly, spirit armor is replacing the concept of armored evolutions, which is perhaps most likely. This would mean Game Freak decided to change the name of it.
Alternatively, the two concepts might actually co-exist. If so, the next Pokemon game to appear on the Nintendo Switch will offer an extensive, in depth system when it comes to battling Pokemon.
With that said, what does spirit armor actually entail?
What is spirit armor?
The leak is based off a Chinese social media post and, therefore, few in the west can understand it. People have used Google translate to understand it but this provides a questionable translation at best.
However, some Chinese speakers have also translated it, and while there are different interpretations of the leak flying about, there's some rather interesting information to be gleaned from it.
The translation is as follows:
- The starter Pokemon's final evolutions are pure grass/fire/water types but can be changed through a new system called spirit armor. This will change them into grass+fairy/fire+fighting/water+ghost respectively
- The spirit armor system works similarly to adding some additional effects such as the burn or freeze status condition. There are lots of different armors to collect and they don't occupy the item slot. They have their own.
- Special spirit armor can change forms of some Pokemon like the starters, Mewtwo and Meltan.
- The legendary Pokemon is a single one, the logo wolf, cannot get into battles until you armor it with the version exclusive item. The sword wolf is dragon/steel while the shield one is ice/steel with different ability and move set. You can share the armor to get the opposite form between versions.
- Some old characters will return.
These details suggest that spirit armor and armored evolutions could have a place together. Spirit armor appears to apply to most, if not all, Pokemon whereas armored evolutions only does so to a specific few. The "special spirit armor" above may well refer to armored evolutions.
Interestingly, some initial translations had included "three royal houses". This is apparently false due to using a word for word translation. The three royal houses actually translate to "starter Pokemon" in Chinese.
Due to the specific nature of the leak it appears legitimate, at least to those commenting on it.
In reality, however, it's very difficult to be sure of the legitimacy of a leak until it's confirmed. As a result, it's important to assume that they're not true until proven otherwise.