Yes, Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu and Let's Go, Eevee! are part of the "core" Pokémon series

Oct 27, 2017
2,735
Costa Rica
#1

I have seen too much confusion about this here and everywhere and I believe it's time to set things straight.

Yes, Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! are core series Pokémon games. They are also mainline game. Mainline and core is exactly the same thing.

Pokémon Let's Go is the third entry in the seventh generation of core Pokémon series. And will be remembered as the first core Pokémon game ever on a home console.

Now, allow me to explain.


Pocket Monsters



To explain this I first have to talk about the origins of Pokémon. ポケットモンスター 赤 Pocket Monsters: Red and ポケットモンスター 緑 Pocket Monsters: Green were the first games of the entire Pokémon franchise, released on 1996.

The Pocket Monsters franchise was brought to the west as the "Pokémon" franchise, a smaller one-word name because Pocket Monsters is a mouthful. After this they also begun to use the term "Pokémon" in Japan and nowadays every Pokémon movie starts with the phrase "Pocket Monsters, or Pokemon for short".

On 1998, thanks to Pokémon popularity, the first ever spin-off title (as we categorize them here on the west) was released: ポケモン スタジアム Pokémon Stadium for the Nintendo 64. At the time developers didn't want people to confuse spin-offs with the main Pokémon series, so they decided to use the short word "Pokémon" (ポケモン) for every spin-off game since while reserving the full name Pocket Monsters ポケットモンスターシリーズ for the main series.

In Japan the official term Game Freak uses for spin-off games is 『ポケットモンスター』シリーズ 関連作品 which in English would be "Pocket Monsters series related games". On The Pokémon Company's website the term used for spin-offs is そのほかのポケモンソフト or "Other Pokémon soft".


Core games

For years the term "mainline games" or the "main series" were used by fans to refer to the main Pokémon RPGs for Nintendo handhelds. The term was also used loosely by Nintendo and TPCi however that changed on the 5th generation.

You see, for years The Pokémon Company International was using incorrect or at least not totally accurate translations for some aspects related to the games. One of these aspects are Legendary Pokémon.

In Japan since Pokémon Red and Green there have been two groups of very special Pokémon: 伝説のポケモン Legendary Pokémon and 幻のポケモン Illusory Pokémon. Legendary is the group of powerful Pokémon that can be caught in-game and are usually the ones in the cover like Mewtwo, Groudon, Rayquaza, Dialga, Giratina, Zekrom, Xerneas, Zygarde, Tapu Koko, Solgaleo, Lunala, Necrozma, etc. On the other hand, the Illusory group was created so developers could hide Pokémon in the game data and then distribute the creatures themselves as a later date as a way to revive hype for the game. The first Illusory Pokémon was Mew, and since we have lots of event-exclusive Pokémon such as Celebi, Jirachi, Arceus, Genesect, Volcanion, Zeraora, etc.

However, when the games where brought to the west the translators ignored this difference and called every Pokémon from both groups "Legendary". This mistake continue to being carried for years until TPCi decided to stop it and in Gen V the official translation of "Mythical Pokémon" was used for the first time.

Ever since Pokémon BW, official media in the west recognizes the two separate terms and Mythical or Illusory Pokémon were never referred to as Legendary again.

Another translation that was corrected, or at least they started to take it more seriously is an official designation for the mainline Pokémon games. Both spin-offs and mainline games are called "Pokémon" here so they couldn't suddenly change the games to "Pocket Monsters". However they decided that the official term for the mainline series would be the "Core Series".

The earliest use of this term that I could find was on an interview with IGN where they ask if the mainline games will ever be on a home console like the Wii. The interviewer of course has no idea that the "core series" term exist so it's normal to use the mainline term. However, when replying the Masuda's translator uses the correct term core series.

Since then, The Pokémon Company International has always referred to the main Pokémon series as the "core series of Pokémon RPGs". During Generation 6 the term gained more notoriety as it was used for X/Y on an Iwata Asks interview and also on the official website.


Pokémon Let's Go



Now we're finally back to 2018. As you should have learned through this post, the difference between "core" and "mainline" doesn't exist in Japan. There there are only two very clearly defined categories of games, the "Pocket Monsters series games" and the "Pokemon games". The official Japanese names for the games are ポケットモンスター Let's Go! ピカチュウ Pocket Monsters: Let's Go! Pikachu and ポケットモンスター Let's Go! イーブイ Pocket Monsters: Let's Go! Eievui. They are both part of the Pocket Monsters series.

Tsunekazu Ishihara, TPC's president, stated very clearly in the Famitsu interview that Pokémon Let's Go are the first Pocket Monsters series games ever on a home console. And as you saw on the Twitter video on the top of this post, throughout the conference the games were called mainline / core multiple times.

The reality is that core and mainline is exactly the same thing. There's no difference, both are translated exactly the same to "Pocket Monsters series" in Japanese.

Even Joe from Serebii had to clarify on Twitter yesterday about this:


Let's Go is a very different game from previous entries in the core series sure, and the next game will be very different from it, but that doesn't mean Let's Go isn't part of the core series. Some people try to undervalue Let's Go by saying it's a spin-off or that it isn't a core game, but those are just lies. Not even an opinion: a lie. Something not true.


The 2019 core game



Now let's briefly talk about the core Pokémon RPG for 2019. This will be the first game from the eight generation of Pokémon and the second entry of the series for a home console.

Many people refer to the tweet from TPC to say something like "the true core game will be out in 2019 and Let's Go is a spin-off" but that's misleading.

Yes, the 2019 game will be part of the core Pokémon series. A new core game is coming in 2019. However, that doesn't mean that Let´s Go is not a core game. Heck, as you saw in the video above in the press conference they explicitly stated that the 2019 title will be "another core game", apart from Let's Go. Both are core games.



If you are reading this then that means you (hopefully) have read everything until the end! Thank you for taking your time.

I hope my post helps to clear some of the confusion about Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! Of course you are free to have your own opinion of the games, you can even hate them if you want, but please don't spread misinformation. The fake news problem is already very bothersome, let's not make it worse.

Even though the games are clearly not oriented to our "hardcore" demographic, I applaud Game Freak for finally experimenting with the core series and trying something new, as they are known to be very safe and predictable. Let's hope that the next time Game Freak decides to take a big risk they focus on longtime Pokémon fans.
 
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Oct 27, 2017
3,636
#2
Of course they are. Just like Alpha and Omega, Soul and Heart, Fire and Leaf. There’s no doubt they ever weren’t.
 
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Cyanity

Banned
Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,907
#4
Thank you for the clarification. Now all that matters is whether or not the games are -good-. I'm hopeful.
 
Oct 25, 2017
9,139
#5
its a full length Pokemon RPG, but I don't see a negative connotation by differentiating it from the typical games they release since it is doing very pretty unique things. It might end up being a series of games running parallel to the new generational ones.
 
Oct 26, 2017
4,340
#7
I don't think so.

I think you might have a case if they hadn't announced a real pokemon game for 2019. You've kinda just dismissed it, but when have they ever had two entirely separate mainline entries announced to be in development?

Let's Go feels like a mid-point between Go and the main series. It's "what if we made a game that was based on and inspired by Go, but also brought in elements from the mainline series, and amped up the nostalgia play that Go used by going back to the origins of the mainline series".

But they announced 2019 already because Let's Go is not a replacement for the main series.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,364
#9
They can call it what they want, but it’s not Gen VIII. I know this is an arbitrary identifier but it’s what the fans use the most when discussing the games.
 
OP
OP
Atheerios
Oct 27, 2017
2,735
Costa Rica
#10
I don't think so.

I think you might have a case if they hadn't announced a real pokemon game for 2019. You've kinda just dismissed it, but when have they ever had two entirely separate mainline entries announced to be in development?

Let's Go feels like a mid-point between Go and the main series. It's "what if we made a game that was based on and inspired by Go, but also brought in elements from the mainline series, and amped up the nostalgia play that Go used by going back to the origins of the mainline series".

But they announced 2019 already because Let's Go is not a replacement for the main series.
They decided to announce the 2019 game so people don't worry and start saying that wild battles are gone forever and Pokémon is now permanently casualized. They wanted to assure longtime fans that the classic Pokémon gameplay is not dead. That's it, there's no need to overthink it.
 
Oct 25, 2017
9,139
#11
Doesn't change the fact that they sure as hell don't play like the core entries.
What does this mean, exactly? By that logic Zelda and Mario games arent core series because of how much they have shaken up the formula.
Or Final Fantasy 12 isnt a core game because it played like an mmo?
 
Nov 15, 2017
646
#14
They can call it what they want, but it’s not Gen VIII. I know this is an arbitrary identifier but it’s what the fans use the most when discussing the games.
I haven't seen a single person say these are Gen VIII. No one thinks that. These are remakes (reimaginings, I guess) that fall under Gen VII.
 

Cybersai

Banned
Member
Jan 8, 2018
11,631
#16
I think the whole "Let's Go" think might actually become a sub-series. Started with Pokemon Go, now Pikachu and Eevee.

How do you know we aren't going to get the Johto region in "Let's Go" format next, with a Marill and Elekid versions or something?
 
Jun 26, 2018
154
#17
Regardless of if it's considered core or not, the fact that it has the Pokemon Go capture mechanic, and doesn't work like every other Pokemon game in the core series, makes me very unsure if I will like this game.
 
Nov 20, 2017
532
#18
If this is a core game they wouldn't immediately announce another traditional game IN THE SAME VIDEO.

How many times are they trying to justify their point now? This is pretty funny.
 
Oct 27, 2017
696
#20
Uhh, I guess call them whatever you want but the Let's Go games have some pretty distinct mechanics from the other titles. That's why it's status as a mainline/core title is contentious, not a confusion over mainline vs core.
 
Oct 30, 2017
2,427
#22
When nintendo says there will be a 2019 pokemon core game, they are just saying: "we are doing something different this year, but if dont like, stop crying and be annoying because we will have something more to you liking next year, but we want to release something this year anyway because we like money and most people will buy anyway so shut up!!"

I mean, remenber when iwata announced nx because he also also announced mobile games coming from nintendo? its the same thing.

The only difference is that this year games will cost 60 dollars.
 
Oct 27, 2017
4,439
Kuwait.
#23
I don't think so.

I think you might have a case if they hadn't announced a real pokemon game for 2019. You've kinda just dismissed it, but when have they ever had two entirely separate mainline entries announced to be in development?

Let's Go feels like a mid-point between Go and the main series. It's "what if we made a game that was based on and inspired by Go, but also brought in elements from the mainline series, and amped up the nostalgia play that Go used by going back to the origins of the mainline series".

But they announced 2019 already because Let's Go is not a replacement for the main series.
It can be a first, I don't see the issue.

Capcom did it once when they announced 3G and 4 both for 3DS. I see it as a way to confirm that the new system is getting the new generation.
 
Oct 25, 2017
607
#25
They can call it what they want, but it’s not Gen VIII. I know this is an arbitrary identifier but it’s what the fans use the most when discussing the games.
It's a Gen VII title; it's the remake game that happens every generation since Gen III, with the exception of Gen V. No one has ever called it a Gen VIII title, that's next years game.

This game is quickly becoming The Last Jedi of Pokemon games.
It's more like the Mario 3D World of Pokemon "It's not a real core 3D Mario game!"
 
Nov 15, 2017
646
#26
This thread is killing me already.

TPC: "Here is a new Pokemon game. It is a core title."

Fans: "But is it a core title?"

-----

I just don't understand where the confusion comes from. If the developers say it is, then it is.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,636
#28
I don't think so.

I think you might have a case if they hadn't announced a real pokemon game for 2019. You've kinda just dismissed it, but when have they ever had two entirely separate mainline entries announced to be in development?

Let's Go feels like a mid-point between Go and the main series. It's "what if we made a game that was based on and inspired by Go, but also brought in elements from the mainline series, and amped up the nostalgia play that Go used by going back to the origins of the mainline series".

But they announced 2019 already because Let's Go is not a replacement for the main series.
They announced it because they know hardcore fans would be spooked by this.

Just like the past, mid gen remakes are a thing. It’s a mid gen remake focusing on marketing. Only reason they said anything about new games is because of the backlash they knew theyd get.
 
Oct 26, 2017
4,913
#34
This game is quickly becoming The Last Jedi of Pokemon games.
The Last Jedi intentionally trolls expectations to make the movie as surprising as possible even though that pissed off some fans.

Let's Go! makes the games as unsurprising as possible even though that pissed off some fans.

Hmmmmmm, kind of, but IDK.
 

sdp

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,075
#36
They're being ambiguous on purpose OP, even Joe has said so himself. They're waiting to see how Let's go does to see what they decide to do with it. I'm guessing is I'd it's a huge success or failure it'll just branch off as a spin off. Somewhere down the middle and they'll keep it a "main" game.
 
Nov 20, 2017
532
#37
This thread is killing me already.

TPC: "Here is a new Pokemon game. It is a core title."

Fans: "But is it a core title?"

-----

I just don't understand where the confusion comes from. If the developers say it is, then it is.
Don't give it a subtitle for a starter.
 
Oct 25, 2017
838
#38
It's a marketing term. They refer to it as mainline or core in order for dedicated fans of the series to take it more seriously so they can sell more copies. It doesn't actually matter at all.
 
Oct 25, 2017
9,139
#42
The Last Jedi intentionally trolls expectations to make the movie as surprising as possible even though that pissed off some fans.

Let's Go! makes the games as unsurprising as possible even though that pissed off some fans.

Hmmmmmm, kind of, but IDK.
Wouldn't it be more comparable to Rogue One if you really had to force a Star Wars comparison. Its revisiting an older setting while not including/focusing on things people seem to require for it to be Star Wars ie. Lightsabers and The Force

Its a whole lot more colourful than Rogue One at least.
 
Oct 25, 2017
5,392
#44
This is like companies calling a remake a "Remaster plus". We all know it isn't a core mainline title, even if the company calls it that.
The fact that it only contains first gen Pokémon should be enough, but peowle will keep being stubborn I suppose.
 
Oct 25, 2017
9,139
#47
This is like companies calling a remake a "Remaster plus". We all know it isn't a core mainline title, even if the company calls it that.
The fact that it only contains first gen Pokémon should be enough, but peowle will keep being stubborn I suppose.
was FF12 a spinoff? games in many popular series make huge deviations and theyre still core games because theyre full length RPGs with the main developers and directors working on them.
seems stubborn to refuse to accept that this perfectly fits the definition of being a core rpg.
 
May 22, 2018
1,505
#48
What does this mean, exactly? By that logic Zelda and Mario games arent core series because of how much they have shaken up the formula.
Or Final Fantasy 12 isnt a core game because it played like an mmo?
Unlike Mario and Zelda, which regularly change up their formula, core Pokemon games pretty much all play the same.

Except for Let's Go, in which they stripped away a number of vital game mechanics and content just because. Until now, mainline games have never done stupid shit like removing wild battles, possibly taking out held items and abilities, and not letting you evolve certain Pokemon for no reason. It's the first "core" remake to actively regress in literally every area except for graphics.
 
Oct 27, 2017
2,456
#49
For me a mainline or core title is one that has the expected gameplay. It would be a core title if they WERE taking the series down this route only. It being a remake adds to it as well, as well as the following year featuring a title going back to the mainline series traits.

Like Forza Horizon is it's own series now and feels like it's own major thing but it was certainly a spinoff even if it held its own as a game.

Though really, arguing over terms like this is fruitless typically anyway, so meh.
 
Oct 25, 2017
9,139
#50
Unlike Mario and Zelda, which regularly change up their formula, core Pokemon games pretty much all play the same.

Except for Let's Go, in which they stripped away a number of vital game mechanics and content just because. Until now, mainline games have never done stupid shit like removing wild battles, possibly taking out held items and abilities, and not letting you evolve certain Pokemon for no reason. It's the first remake to actively regress in literally every area except for graphics.
Except the series regularly does away with much loved features ie. Hard Mode, PSS, Dexnav, while also now being 10x more story focused. Was Sun and Moon less core because it had hours of unskippable handholding and cutscenes?