When Pokémon Legends: Arceus was first announced, the gameplay trailer featured the Pokemon series breaking new ground as it transitions into an open world game. Or at least, that’s what it looked like. But in a statement given to Kotaku, The Pokemon Company confirmed that Pokemon Legends: Arceus will not be open world.
It’s easy to see why everyone initially thought that the game would be open world based on the gameplay footage. But as it turns out, the gameplay will be more akin to a Monster Hunter-like game rather than full on open world.
In Pokémon Legends: Arceus, Jubilife Village will serve as the base for surveying missions. After receiving an assignment or a request and preparing for their next excursion, players will set out from the village to study one of the various open areas of the Hisui region. After they finish the survey work, players will need to return once more to prepare for their next task. We look forward to sharing more information about exploring the Hisui region soon.
This definitely seems very much like the Monster Hunter games, where players have a central hub where they stock up on items, upgrade their gear, prepare canteen buffs, and also chat with local residents before venturing out on quests.
The “various open areas” sound akin like locales in Monster Hunter, where you will depart to for the quest before returning back to the hub.
While the news that Pokemon Legends: Arceus is not a true open world experience will be a disappoint to some, we at least now have a better understanding of what to expect when we try out this game for the first time.
Also, this is still a new style of gameplay unique to the Pokemon series, and it does look promising. The quest system in Monster Hunter is something I can very easily see working out well in a Pokemon title.
Pokemon Legends: Arceus launches on Nintendo Switch in January 28, 2022.