We’ve learned the upcoming Pokemon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Pokemon: Let’s Go, Eevee! are probably the last Pokemon games for Junichi Masuda as director, the longest-running director on the franchise.
The news comes via an interview with Pokemon.com, where Masuda said “It’s important to have the younger generation at Game Freak take over the development of Pokemon as a series. I do believe this will probably be, in terms of the main Pokemon RPGs, the last time that I work as the director.”
Masuda noted that while he worked on the base game concepts for Pokemon GO, he had the idea of introducing new Pokemon through the mobile game. “I wanted to realize that goal by creating games that could connect with Pokemon GO and feel somewhat similar to it without feeling like we were copying it,” he said.
“Given my involvement in Pokemon GO‘s development, I felt that I was probably the best person to direct these games,” Masuda said when talking about returning to the director’s chair.
“It was also interesting to work with Nintendo Switch. There’s a lot of technology packed into the hardware that we were all trying to discover at Game Freak,” he said. “For example, developing the Poke Ball Plus and working with Bluetooth to facilitate the connection with Pokemon GO were both very interesting things that I had a chance to work on as the director this time”
Masuda’s first Pokemon game to direct was Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire back in 2002, followed by Pokemon FireRed and LeafGreen in 2004, Pokemon Diamond and Pearl in 2006, Pokemon Black and White in 2010, and finally Pokemon X and Y in 2013. He was also the composer and producer on lots of other Pokemon games, including the composer for Pokemon Red and Blue.
In case you missed it, we did a thorough hands-on preview for the game, which you can find here.
Pokémon Let’s Go! Pikachu and Pokémon Let’s Go! Eevee are launching exclusively for the Nintendo Switch, on November 16th.