How to Choose Between 'Pokémon Sun' and 'Moon'

The most important decision of the year. Well, maybe.

Pokemon Sun and Moon

We all have some important decisions to make this November. Like, you know, when Pokémon Sun and Moon launches on November 18. Which version will you choose? Game Freak is changing things up a bit this time around, so there are a few new things to consider when picking. With that in mind, let’s compare what we know about Pokémon Sun and Moon to make sure you’re prepared for the big day.

Pokemon Sun and Moon
Early bird or night owl?

The Time Difference

Pokémon Sun and Moon are going to operate in different time zones — they’ll be 12 hours apart! Pokémon Sun’s time will match the Nintendo 3DS’ internal clock, but Pokémon Moon will be 12 hours ahead, so if you’re playing during the day, it’ll actually be night. You’ll have to decide if you prefer catching Pokémon by the light of the moon or in broad daylight. Your schedule might be something else to consider, depending on when you’re available to put in Pokémon time.

Pokémon Sun and Moon
Solgaleo or Lunala — the choice is yours. 

Legendary Pokémon

Fitting with tradition, each version gets a unique legendary Pokémon. They each can take on special forms based on the time of the day, but ultimately you’ll probably want to choose the one who’s type matches your preferences. Lunala is a Ghost/Psychic type while Solgaleo is Psychic/Steel type. The game’s story also branches around the different legendary Pokémon, though it’s unclear just how much.

Pokemon Sun and Moon
Lycanroc takes on different forms depending on your version of the game. 

Unique Pokémon

There will be Pokémon unique to each game apart from the legendaries, too. Passimian, a Fighting type, is only found in Sun, while Moon’s Oranguru is a Normal/Psychic type. Some may even evolve into different Pokémon depending which version you have. Rockruff, the adorable Rock-type puppy, evolves into Midday Lycanroc in Sun and Midnight Lycanroc in Moon.

Pokémon Sun and Moon
Different Totem Pokémon are available depending on your version. 

You’ll also face-off against different Totem Pokémon when you do Island Trials. So far we know that Pokémon Sun players will find Gumshoo in the Melemele Island trial, while Alolan Raticate will make an appearance in Pokémon Moon.

Pokemon Sun and Moon
Super mosquito or high-heeled mayfly — take your pick

Ultra Beasts

We don’t know too much about Ultra Beasts. They’re seemingly not really Pokémon, though they look like them. There’s some speculation that they’re man-made or somehow linked to the Aether Foundation, which performs research on Pokémon and other assorted monsters. We do know that Ultra Beasts take on different appearances based on the version of the game. The picture of above showcases the Sun and Moon versions of UB-02 respectively, and clearly they vary quite a bit.

While more differences might reveal themselves as the days to launch roll by, it’s already clear each version is loaded with exclusive content. Your choice will largely depend on your play style, schedule, and Pokémon type preference, but don’t stress! You’ve got time to make your decision before we all get to explore Alola.