In a statement issued today by Gamefreak’s Junichi Masuda, Producer of Sword and Shield, the company defended the decision to limit the Pokemon available in the next title.

Masuda’s statement reads as follows:

Thank you to all of our fans for caring so deeply about Pokémon. Recently, I shared the news that some Pokémon cannot be transferred to Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield. I’ve read all your comments and appreciate your love and passion for Pokémon.

Just like all of you, we are passionate about Pokémon and each and every one of them is very important to us. After so many years of developing the Pokémon video games, this was a very difficult decision for me. I’d like to make one thing clear: even if a specific Pokémon is not available in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, that does not mean it will not appear in future games.

The world of Pokémon continues to evolve. The Galar region offers new Pokémon to encounter, Trainers to battle, and adventures to embark on. We are pouring our hearts into these games, and we hope you will look forward to joining us on this new journey.

June 28, 2019

Junichi Masuda

Whilst this may quell fan concerns over Pokemon being permanently removed from rotation, it does little for those angered by their removal in the first place.

Fans angry about the loss of the National Dex tend to claim that it is against the spirit of the franchise, and that the game does not boast the content or graphical fidelity to make a move particularly understandable in the first place. Z-Moves and Mega Evolutions will not be a part of the title, for example.

Sensing an opportunity to help save the real world’s beautiful creatures, someone even started up a wildlife fund.

Regardless of which side you’re on, Pokemon Sword and Shield will debut on the Switch this November 15th.