Pokémon Sword and Shield is just two weeks away, but a flurry of leaks may have revealed some of the game’s biggest remaining secrets, including the final evolutions of all three starter Pokémon and the entire freakin’ Pokédex. That should be good news, but instead, it has fans furious over all the Pokémon that are missing from the upcoming game. However, a few recent Pokémon Sword and Shield leaks may reveal that those missing ‘mon aren’t just an oversight, they’re a key part of the game’s thrilling new story.
I’m just speculating here, but if I’m right, Pokémon Sword and Shield could tell the franchise’s biggest story ever by stealing a plotline from Avengers: Endgame.
Warning: Possible spoilers for Pokémon Sword and Shield (and Avengers: Endgame) below.
You can check out the full leaked Pokédex for Pokémon Sword and Shield here. What’s important to know is that the green squares are Pokémon included in the game, while the white squares are missing. That doesn’t just mean you won’t find them in the wilds of the Galar Region. You can’t transfer them over from a previous game either.
Yes, that means Bulbasaur, Squirtle, and all their evolutions are missing, and that’s just the tip of the Articuno (who’s also absent from this leaked Sword and Shield Pokédex). In total, it appears that 232 Pokémon from the previous games could be missing. So is that really just an issue of saving room on the game file (like Nintendo claims) or is something else in play here?
Two big clues suggest that these missing Pokémon might be part of a bigger scheme. The first comes from Game Informer executive editor, who recently tweeted “Guess who the big bad in Pokémon Sword and Shield is?” accompanied by GIF of Thanos snapping his fingers in Avengers: Infinity War.
It’s likely that was just a joke, but Game Informer often works with major game studios on splashy articles that require getting early looks at these games. So it’s possible that Reiner could be teasing some inside info about the reason why all those Pokémon are missing in Sword and Shield. Could some evil person or Pokémon wipe out nearly half of the Pokémon in existence just like Thanos did at the end of Infinity War?
A second tweet from Twitter account @CentroLeaks, which has been a major source of info in the past few days, may have revealed how this Avengers-inspired story plays out:
After beating the game, the Pokédex is extended from 400 to 632!!
Now that’s interesting! Keep in mind, this hasn’t been confirmed, but if it’s true, it means something happens at the end of Pokémon Sword and Shield that essentially brings back all the missing Pokémon (Bulbasaur included). That sure sounds a lot like the end of Endgame when the heroes undo Thanos’ snap and bring back everyone who vanished.
Again, this is all just speculation, but the more I think about it the more it makes sense. Why else would Pokémon Sword and Shield remove some of the most iconic Pokémon in the franchise? If they really are just gone it’s going to upset a lot of fans, but if your mission in the new game is to bring them back, well, that might just be the greatest adventure in Pokémon history.
Pokémon Sword and Shield releases for Nintendo Switch on November 15.