Viral Pokemon map has Sword & Shield players questioning Galar region - Dexerto
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Viral Pokemon map has Sword & Shield players questioning Galar region

Published: 28/Jan/2021 22:29

by Brent Koepp

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A Pokemon fan’s artwork that reimagines Black & White’s map in the same style as Sword & Shield has players questioning the Galar region’s design.

Despite releasing over a decade ago, Pokemon Black & White has become wildly popular with players in the past few years. The Gen V title is now considered a classic in the long-running Game Freak series.

A fan’s recreation of Unova region’s map in the same style as 2019’s Sword & Shield has some in the community questioning whether Gen 8’s world was really big enough.

Screenshot of Pokemon Sword & Shield Wild Area.
Game Freak / The Pokemon Company
A viral Unova map has Sword & Shield fans asking if Galar was big enough in Gen 8.

Viral Unova Pokemon map sparks Sword & Shield debate

Popular artist ‘EliteRobo‘ went viral after posting their stunning concept to the r/PokemonSwordAndShield subreddit, and showed the community what the Unova Region’s world layout would look like using Gen 8’s art style.

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The custom map highlighted the stark difference between the 2010 and 2019 title, as Sword & Shield opted for a more linear pathway that goes up and down.

Gen V in comparison is more circular and has players zig-zagging across various directions. The contrast between the two titles quickly sparked a debate among fans.

I remade the Unova Map in Sword and Shield Style from PokemonSwordAndShield

Many players were stunned by the differences, such as a user who wrote “With this, you can understand how Galar map is smaller and less detailed”. Others agreed, with another fan exclaiming “Makes me realize how small the Gen 8 map is in comparison to previous games”.

Screenshot of Pokemon players reacting to Unova Sword & Shield crossover map.

While many were critical of Sword & Shield’s world design, several players defended the Nintendo Switch title, arguing that it’s bigger than it looks on paper. “The gen 8 map isn’t really that small though. There just aren’t a lot of routes pretty much half of it is made up of the Wild area when excluding the DLC,” someone else said.

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Screenshot of Pokemon reacting to viral Unova concept.

Although the top-down map view doesn’t entirely capture the depth of each title’s world, the artist’s concept gives us an interesting look at the direction Game Freak went with Sword & Shield.

Criticism aside, the Gen 8 RPG has been a major hit sales-wise. In 2020 reports, it was revealed that the Nintendo Switch release is on track to become the second best-selling game in the Pokemon franchise.