Last year marked the arrival of one of the most divisive mainline Pokemon titles of all time in Scarlet and Violet. The games were very innovative in their open-world approach to the usual Pokemon formula and there was a ton of fun to be had with them… if you could look past the bugs and tech issues plaguing them. Unfortunately, a lot of players couldn’t and it raised questions of quality that followed the franchise to the Pokemon Championships 2023 event. It was there that COO Takato Utsunomiya shared that following Scarlet and Violet, the Pokemon Company is having conversations about the cadence and quality standards of Pokemon games.
Utsunomiya addressed the matter of Pokemon release schedules and quality in an interview during the Pokemon Championships, as asked by Comicbook.com. When asked if Pokemon was beholden to a specific release schedule, Utsunomiya shared word of the conversations happening.
“I think we're still operating in that way, but there's more and more conversations, as the development environments change, about how we can continue to do this, while making sure that we're ensuring really quality products are also being introduced," Utsunomiya continued.
It seems likely that the Pokemon Company’s conversations about quality and timing are a direct result of the feedback from Scarlet and Violet. At the time of their release, we enjoyed the games for their innovative nature and gimmicks, but criticized them for their severe performance issues. Much of the Pokemon fanbase felt similar and, while Game Freak worked to addressed issues patch after patch, there was still plenty to criticize about the performance quality of the game.
It remains to be seen if we might see Pokemon game release schedules adjusted or quality increased. The first DLC for Scarlet and Violet is on its way in September and should provide an interesting snapshot of how things are moving. Stay tuned for more information as updates drop.