When Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon were announced in June, some people were surprised that the pair of games were coming to 3DS and not Nintendo’s newer Switch console. Now, Game Freak–developer of the mainline Pokemon series–has explained why it decided against bringing the games to Switch.
“We’ve been working with the 3DS hardware since Pokemon X and Y,” Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon producer Shigeru Ohmori told GameSpot. “Even then we wanted to get the maximum power and maximum potential out of the 3DS, and ever since then we’ve continued to try [to do] that. With X and Y we thought we’d got as much as we could out, but then Sun and Moon came along and we pushed even harder and got as much as we could out of the system at that time. And now, again, with Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, we’ve tried to make this the pinnacle of our work with the 3DS system and make it a culmination of all our efforts to get the absolute most out of the system that we can.”
One of the reasons people were surprised at the lack of a Switch version was because a third version of Pokemon Sun and Moon–unofficially dubbed Pokemon Stars–was heavily rumored to be in development for the hybrid console. That game may have subsequently become Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, and when pressed on whether those games could come to Switch later down the line, Ohmori stated simply that “there are [currently] no plans for that in particular.”
Nintendo Switch does have a Pokemon game in development, of course. Game Freak is working on a “core RPG” Pokemon title for the console, though we know next to nothing about what game that might be. Elsewhere in our interview, Game Freak explained why Pokemon for Switch is helped by Ultra Sun and Moon, and stated which of the two you should buy. Look out for more from the interview soon.
Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon launch for 3DS on November 17, featuring an “alternate” story and some new Pokemon. If you’re still playing the base games, check out all the free Pokemon and items you can get in Pokemon Sun and Moon right now.