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Pokemon • Jun 18, 2019

Pokemon players are comparing Sword and Shield to 20-year-old Stadium and the results aren't great

Pokemon players are comparing Sword and Shield to 20-year-old Stadium and the results aren't great

Questions continue to be asked of Pokemon Sword and Shield as trainers are now comparing the new Switch game to 20 year-old Pokemon Stadium. 

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Since gameplay footage was revealed at E3 2019, Pokemon Sword and Shield has caused quite the stir in the game's online community. It is the graphics of the game that are currently coming under fire.

Animations better in Pokemon Stadium?

Some battle scenes were shown during the gameplay which have underwhelmed some Pokemon fans. This has led them to draw comparisons between the new titles and Pokemon Stadium.

Animations are the latest part of Pokemon Sword and Shield to come under fire...

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The Pokemon Stadium games released on the Nintendo 64 back in 1998. They are being used as a comparison for some fans to try and highlight just how poor the animations are.

The evidence is hard to argue too strongly against with the classic Pokemon game appearing to have more care put into it. Of course, the resolution doesn't compare, but strictly from an animation stand point, some fans would argue that it does appear to be better. 

(For mobile users, footage starts at 4:18 in the video below)

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Split opinion

However, not all Pokemon trainers believe the comparison is fair. One Reddit user stated: "They also only had 151 Pokemon to animate and stadium didn’t have a story/world to explore. I’m all for calling out GF, but at least come up with an argument that’s substantial."

It's not unreasonable to think that 20 years in gaming technology advances would provide the power to do this. Another user snapped back saying: "[It] is a good argument. Pokemon is the highest grossing media franchise ever. They should be held to a higher standard in 2019."

Zelda making Pokemon look bad

Elsewhere, comparisons between Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Sword Shield have been made with the implication that Game Freak aren't living up to expectations. Whether this is a fair comparison or not is debatable.

This has also caused divided opinion, much like the animations debate. Those coming to the defense of Game Freak are saying there are less characters to animate on Breath of the Wild and that they had a six year development time - whereas Pokemon Sword and Shield only had three.


Amidst the removal of the national Pokedex controversy, a lot of Pokemon fans have recently turned on Game Freak.

They will be under a lot of scrutiny with some fans retaining hope there will be improvements ahead of its release on November 15, 2019.

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