Trailer, Plot & Release Date

While the sheer anticipation for Pokémon's second generation titles will probably never be matched, the hype around Pokémon Diamond and Pearl remakes comes close. While certain elements of these games' design and structure have been brought into question, they're still widely lauded in general. Between their challenge, new mechanics, and Sinnoh itself, Generation IV is a beloved point in the series.

Soon, gamers will be able to revisit the region in Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, and as its release date approaches, The Pokémon Company is revealing more and more about this long-awaited game. Here's everything we know about Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl so far, including its trailer, release date and new features.

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Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl's Trailer

Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl were announced in a trailer that debuted during a Pokémon Presents celebrating the franchise's 25th anniversary. While it was light on details, it celebrated the legacy of the Sinnoh region while showcasing the remake's art style. More information would be revealed in a new trailer released as part of August's Pokémon Presents, which took a deeper dive into the games.

After teasing the opening scenes that will greet players when they start -- including the moment when the protagonist and their rival choose their starters after being cornered by wild Starly -- the trailer shows players exploring Sinnoh. Traversal mechanics like ramps players can slide down (and ride up) on their bikes and deep mud that traps players will return from the originals, as will Sinnoh's gyms.

It also revealed a variety of returning mechanics, like stickers for Poké Balls, Contests and the Underground, as well as major characters and story elements. Notably, the trailer reveals some new features, like Pokémon following in the overworld, character customization options and certain places were Pokémon appear in the overworld -- though the game looks to return to the original's random encounters.

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Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl's September trailer detailed a variety of smaller features coming to the game including returning mini-games and side characters. Perhaps most importantly, it detailed how HM moves will be incorporated into the game without being as frustrating as they were in the originals. A trailer released the following month showcased gym leaders from later in the game, the villainous Team Galactic and the Legendary Lake Trio.

Finally, in the weeks leading up to the game's launch, Pokémon announced some of Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl's post-game content via a brief trailer showing off a new area called Ramanas Park. Finally, Nintendo released a longer overview trailer that sums up most of the info revealed so far from the main story and temporary companions to the Grand Underground and Super Contest Shows.

What Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl Is About

Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl will be faithful remakes of the original Generation IV games, and the plot is unlikely to deviate from what came before. A key theme of this remake is nostalgia, and the official website hammers that home. On it, a text blurb notes that "the original story has been faithfully reproduced, and the sense of scale in the originals' towns and routes has been carefully preserved." As such, it's fairly easy to anticipate what players will experience.

The adventure will chronicle the player character's journey to the top of the gym challenge. In their quest to become the Sinnoh region champion, the player will compete against their rival, as well as Team Galactic. Ever since Generation III, Pokémon's narratives have hinged on the evil teams and the marquee box Legendaries; Diamond and Pearl are no different. However, what is still unclear is whether or not Platinum's narrative additions will be infused into the game.

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What We Know About Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl

Perhaps the most notable change present in these remakes is a meta one: Game Freak itself is not working on Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl. Instead, ILCA Inc. has been tasked with development. This outsourcing is significant. Not only does it free up Game Freak to work on projects such as Pokémon Legends: Arceus, it also may suggest why these remakes are more of a one-to-on recreation than a reimagining.

As for changes to the games themselves, Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl will include some features not included in the originals, which mainly involve aesthetic changes. One of these is Pokémon following the player, which was originally only available for certain Pokémon deemed cute enough to walk around Amity Square. That area will return, now allowing players to stroll with up to six Pokémon -- so long as they are cute enough to be let into the park.

Additionally, the original game's Seals have been renamed Stickers, though these seem to work the same way. Players will be able to customize the protagonist's clothing -- something that wasn't included in the Hoenn remakes despite customization debuting that generation.

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One of the more significant additions shown off of far concerns the Underground. While much of it appears as it did in the original Sinnoh games (the mining mini-game in particular seems to be a faithful recreation), there are new locations called Pokémon Hideaways. These areas will feature wild Pokémon roaming the overworld that players can catch. The Pokémon that appear are affected by the statues players place in their Secret Bases, which look to change the environment to suit different types.

Some of Sinnoh's Pokémon can only be found there -- which seems to be a way to fix the original's Pokédex issues without altering existing areas too much. The presentation specifically shows a player encountering a Houndoom, a Pokémon added to Platinum's regional Dex to remedy its predecessor's lack of Fire-types.

As for other features, Diamond and Pearl's Pokétch will return to the game. This was a smartwatch-like device that contained a variety of apps that helped players track things like how many steps they took and how their Pokémon were doing in daycare, making it incredibly useful for breeding and hatching eggs. The Pokétch previously took up the entirety of the DS' touch screen, but it seems to now live in the upper right corner of the screen. Its absence in certain shots could mean that players can put it away.

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Additionally, the Pokétch will serves as the game's way of incorporating Hidden Moves, the remake's version of HMs. Instead of having to teach these moves to a Pokémon in the party, the Pokétch will have an app that summons a wild Pokémon to help out. Like in the original, more HMs will be unlocked as the player progresses, providing access to more areas of the Sinnoh region.

A new post-game area named Ramanas Park has also been revealed as a place where players who have entered the Hall of Fame will be able to catch Legendary Pokémon that debuted in the first three generations. Players will need to find slates hidden around Sinnoh to trigger these encounters, and the Legendaries available will differ between versions. Those with Brilliant Diamond will be able to catch Ho-Oh and Johto's Legendary Beast trio, while Shining Pearl will include Lugia and Kanto's Legendary Bird trio. Mewtwo and Hoenn's Legendaries don't appear in the trailer, though Rayquaza is teased through a statue seen in the reveal trailer.

Additionally, those who have played previous Pokémon games released for Switch will be rewarded with Mythical Pokémon. By visiting Floaroma Town, players with Sword and Shield data on their Switch will be gifted a Jirachi, and those with Let's Go Pikachu and Eevee data will get a New. This means, assuming these Pokémon can be obtained during the player's first visit, trainers will be able to catch two Mythicals just after completing the first gym.

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When Will Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl Release?

Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl will be available on November 19, 2021. This is fairly expected, as recent core Pokémon games have traditionally launched around this time. Perhaps what's more interesting is that only two months later, the remakes will be followed up by Pokémon Legends: Arceus which launches on January 28, 2022. No matter which title fans are looking forward to, there is plenty of Pokémon on the horizon.

In celebration of these games, Nintendo a special edition Switch Lite that is meant to pay homage to a special edition Nintendo DS Lite that released around the same time as Pokémon Platinum. Though the front of this model appears identical to the standard gray Switch Lite, the back features box art Legendaries Dialga and Palkia. The console will release two weeks before the games on November 5.

There are also several early-purchase bonuses for those who jump into Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl at launch and in the months that follow. The protagonist's warmer looking outfits from Pokémon Platinum and a Manaphy egg will be available until February 21, 2022. Those who buy the digital version before that day will also get a code for 12 Quick Balls via code, which will be redeemable until February 28.

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Abram Buehner (209 Articles Published)

Abram Buehner is an editor, writer, gamer and all-around dork based on the East Coast of the United States. Hopping between Wheaton College in Massachusetts and his home in Midcoast Maine, Abram spends much of his time writing about video games, film, and comics... that is, when Abram isn't playing games, watching film, or reading comics. When he's not doing that, Abram is knee-deep in classwork, in pursuit of a B.A. in Film & New Media Studies with a minor in Journalism. You can connect with Abram on Twitter at @PnguinsWitCapes and email him directly at [email protected]

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