It wasn’t all that long ago that both Game Freak and Nintendo announced that they’d be introducing two new mainline games to the Pokémon series, Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield. Set to release exclusively on Nintendo Switch, the games would introduce three new starters — the Grass-type Grookey, Water-type Sobble, and Fire-type Scorbunny. Being someone who has played the games since the first generation, I find the names a little hard to associate with the respective Pokemon, but they’re some of the most adorable character designs yet.
Right now we’re going through one of the largest booms in Pokémon’s mainstream appeal since the initial release of Pokémon GO thanks to the live-action Detective Pikachu film. With the film currently in theaters, there’s a whole new audience being exposed to the long-running multimedia franchise, with many of those people possibly knowing the world mainly through the live-action lens. So what would the upcoming starters from Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield look like under the same live-action treatment? Well, one of Detective Pikachu’s own artists gave us the answer:
I wanted to spend a bit more time on Sobble since it was looking a bit unfinished compared to the Grookey and Scorbunny. Now you can easily see all three Realistic Pokémon starters here instead of hunting for the individual tweets. pic.twitter.com/aluUm5Sez2
— RJ Palmer@Fanime AA1407 (@arvalis) May 17, 2019
RJ Palmer, an artist who worked on Detective Pikachu, has re-drawn the three starter Pokemon imagined as realistic animal-like creatures who look as if they could exist in our universe. I think that they’ve maintained their cuteness entirely, especially Scorbunny! The artist played heavily on the idea that Scorbunny’s foot soles are where its fire-producing glands are. There are talks of a sequel to Detective Pikachu, so maybe there’s a slight possibility that we’ll see the trio in full 3D hyper-realistic form, who knows. The artist, RJ Palmer, @arvalis on Twitter, also provided us with a recording of him painting Scorbunny and its background.
— RJ Palmer@Fanime AA1407 (@arvalis) May 19, 2019
With Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield set to release exclusively for Nintendo Switch sometime this fall, I think this artwork really pushes along the hype that comes with the anticipation for the release of the games. As of right now, we don’t know an official release date yet, but make sure to keep an eye on the site! You can check out RJ Palmer’s original posts and other artwork on his Twitter.