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YMMV / Pokémon Sword and Shield

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  • Awesome Music:
    • The version of the Pokémon theme mixed with the Hall of Fame theme used in the introductory trailer is cool, clean, and epic, with its synth opening and slick electric guitar.
    • Dynamax (Brand New World), the theme that played during the Dynamax reveal trailer, really sets apart how different Sword and Shield is — for one thing, it's one of the first pieces of music from the Pokémon games to have actual lyrics put up against it, following the likes of Jump Up Super Star and Lifelight. It sounds like a fusion of 90's British rock and a banging anime opening, and just makes one pumped for a Pokémon journey without even mentioning the creatures by name — quite a feat in a franchise whose theme songs are prone to blurting out "Pokémon" every chance they get.
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  • Epileptic Trees:
    • Fans have long been speculating that the Fire-type starters of each generation are based off the animals of the Eastern ZodiacNote , and Scorbunny being a rabbit has added support to the hypothesis. As the only animals left are the ox, the snake, the sheep, and the horse, fans have been making predictions that the Fire starters of the next four generations are going to be these animals (which, funnily enough, has started to spur on additional discussions of how Game Freak would try to do a Fire-type horse starter, as the Fire-type Ponyta and Rapidash already exist).
    • There has been heavy speculation that Galar is related to Kalos in some way, with the most widely-accepted theory being that Galar was the region that Kalos was at war with before, given that the UK and France have had more than their fair share of past wars. More far-fetched theories include Galar having the Moondial (a counterpart to the Anistar City sundial from X and Y), Galar and Kalos being connected via the train tracks seen throughout both regions, and/or Kalos being an unlockable postgame region for Sword and Shield.
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    • Adding to the above, as Galar is a Fantasy Counterpart Culture to the UK, and Unova, Orre, and Alola represent parts of the US, the possibility of the former previously colonizing the latter became another point of intrigue. As a corollary, Kalos is theorized to have had a hand in Unova achieving independence, this helped by the fact that Parfum Palace has Reshiram and Zekrom statues, probably a gift from Unova just like the Statue of Liberty, but reversed (the Statue of Liberty is a gift from France to the US, and was designed by a French sculptor).
    • The giant grass imprint that's an allusion to the Cerne Abbas Giant being either a Legendary that's accessible in either game (similar to Zygarde, Giratina, Necrozma, or Kyurem) or the customary Dragon-type (or dragonesque) Pokémon whose stats are on par with a legendary, or Mythical Pokémon Meltan and Melmetal. Alternately, it refers to the Dynamax phenomenon.
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    • The reveal of the map, specifically the snow-capped mountains, led to speculation that any new Ice-types would be reserved for late-game.
    • Due to the oddness of Leon, the Champion, being revealed so early and seemingly having a Signature Mon that does not in any way connect to the Galar region (a non-mega Charizard), speculation ran wild on the possibility that he, like Alder before him, would not be the final boss, but a post-game boss.
    • Thanks to their similar eye, hair, and skin colors, some fans believe that Leon and Hop are related to Iris somehow.
    • When Hop was introduced, he was referred to as "one of your rivals". This specific wording led some fans to believe that there may be more than one rival once again, similar to Pokémon Black & White and X & Y. The resulting rival being more of a jerkass is particularly hoped for.
    • When the premise was first announced to be based off the UK, a popular candidate for being the Champion was an Expy of Queen Elizabeth II complete with a pair or even a full team of level 100 canine Pokemon while expys of The British Royal Family acted as the Elite Four. Even when this was dismissed with the reveal of Leon as the champion, the fans of this theory still hoped that characters based off the UK royals could become Bonus Bosses.
    • Many people burst into speculation over the adorable Wooloo, saying that it looked too much like a regular sheep to evolve into something also sheep-like; common theories involve it evolving into a sort of werewolf-like creature involving a Moon Stone or the day-night mechanic, or otherwise becoming less sheep-like as it grows, like an alpaca, mainly because of the wool theme and being an animal that has gone an infamously long time without being adapted into a Pokémon).
    • Thanks to her design (specifically the dark skin and blue-streaked hair), many fans suspect that Nessa is related to Archie and/or Shelly somehow. The most popular theory seems to be that she's their daughter.
  • Estrogen Brigade:
    • The Champion, Leon, got himself one as soon as he was revealed, thanks to his handsome design and personality.
    • Milo, the Grass-type Gym Leader, has his own growing fanbase due to his hunky bod and boyish enthusiasm.
  • Fanon:
    • Fans interpret the female protagonist as either a Brave Scot or a Violent Glaswegian. The worst of the group effectively make her a Demoman in a dress.
    • In contrast to the above, people have begun portraying the male protagonist as a soft-spoken, polite Brit with doormat tendencies.
    • Because of the sharp contrast between his infant-like face and extreme musculature, many fans haven taken to portraying Milo as a Dumb Muscle with a childlike voice.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • "Holy Shit!" Quotient:
  • It's the Same, So It Sucks: Like Gen VII, the game seemingly still uses the models and animations first introduced in X and Y, in spite of the series now being on hardware that is much more powerful. This became even more pronounced after the E3 Treehouse stream, which made many fans baffled as to how Game Freak could argue "limited development time" as a reason not to include every existing Pokémon in the game when the graphics engine itself seemed to look virtually identical to the one they already had before.
  • LGBT Fanbase: Even before the game came out, it acquired a LGBT fanbase for a number of reasons, including Leon's fabulous/disastrous dress sense, bisexuals finding Sonia, Nessa, Leon and/or Milo attractive, Zacian and Zamazenta having pride color schemes, Wooloo getting linked to the mental pronunciation of WLW (women loving women), having a Direct during LGBT Pride Month in June, etc. Milo was particularly well received by Bara Genre fans.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Pokémon Gun version.note 
    • The female protagonist is frequently depicted as a raunchy Scotswoman since the Galar region is an Expy of the UK and the female protagonist's default outfit is a tam o'shanter cap and tartan socks. Recreations of some of the most meme-tastic Scottish tweets from her perspective have been created. Less common portrayals have her as Welsh, Northern English, or Cockney, but just as foul-mouthed and aggressive. British voice actress Elsie Lovelock immediately jumped at the chance to put these memes to voice. (NSFW). On the same vein, to contrast her, the male protagonist is often made into a meek posh city kid.
    • Dynamax WailordNote 
    • Nobody can tell you how to dress if you can whoop their ass.Explanation 
    • Woolooloo Explanation 
    • The Dynamax gimmick has many fans deciding which Pokémon will be used to emulate epic Kaiju battles, with Tyranitar as the stand-in for Godzilla and Hydreigon as the Ghidorah stand-in being very popular.
    • Zacian, who is usually compared to Sif, Repede, Koromoru, and Blade Wolf. Not to mention various photos of dogs holding knives in their teeth. Likewise, Zamazenta also gets compared to Solgaleo, Larc, and any maned animal. As well as photos of dogs with cones, cardboard, or other objects around their necks resembling his shield.
    • "Let me see what you have!" "A sword!!" "NO!!!"Explanation 
    • Milo is a DittoExplanation 
    • Signpost Wooloo Explanation 
    • You can ride your bike on water. Professor Oak is somewhere having a stroke.Explanation 
    • Gotta catch some of 'em. Explanation 
    • #BringBackNationalDex Explanation 
    • #5MinutePokémonRendersExplanation 
  • Memetic Psychopath: The Scottish female trainer meme sometimes develops into this, with the female trainer being shown pointing guns or, more often, using a bottle to beat, stab, or threaten other trainers.
  • Moe:
    • The female player character, possibly even more so than any of the previous ones. Small wonder that the fanbase quickly took a fancy to her shortly after the first trailer. Soon after the Memetic Mutation, however, she is seen as a Crazy Awesome Violent Glaswegian instead, but that can be moe in its own right.
    • The unnamed blonde girl (who appears to be the Lass of this generation) is this as well. Her appearance and cute smile are considered very appealing.
    • The Water-type starter Sobble immediately gained popularity for being "the anxiety Pokémon" who will cry at the drop of a hat — something the internet quickly related to.
    • The resident Normal-type Com Mon, Wooloo. It's a small fluffy sheep with a cute face — what's not to love?
    • Yamper. It's an electric corgi dog! It even has a heart on its butt and a little electric bolt for a tail.
  • Self-Fanservice: A lot of the new Pokémon have gotten this, but special mention goes to Wooloo, who goes from an adorable sheep in the game to a Cute Monster Girl in fanart. Often with less or no wool.
  • Ships That Pass in the Night: A trend following the games' announcement has been having the female protagonist paired up with Serena (the video game version, not her younger anime counterpart) as the sweet French-speaking girl to the tsundere foul-mouthed Scottish girl. This pairing is sometimes called the Auld Alliance, after a historical treaty between Scotland and France.
  • Tainted by the Preview:
    • Many fans were disappointed that the ability to have Pokémon follow your trainer has been once again removed after the feature was present in Let's Go.
    • Masuda's announcement that only Pokémon in the Galar Pokédex could be transferred to Sword and Shield through Pokémon Home, effectively ending the tradition of being able to transfer any Pokémon from one generation to another, was not taken well by fans, especially by veterans of the series. This was revealed around the end of Nintendo Treehouse's YouTube footage, which soon gathered a great number of dislikes and comments, almost all of them about what Masuda said at the end. The announcement led to many cynical references to the series' English slogan, "Gotta catch 'em all", and had many fans wishing that the games could be delayed so that this could be fixed note .
      • The announcement that Mega Evolution and Z-Moves would be shelved in Sword and Shield has also been taken poorly.
      • Adding even more fuel to the fire was Masuda's later statement that part of the reason for the change was due to giving individual Pokemon "Higher fidelity with higher quality animations". Enraged fans quickly pointed out that the majority of the animations and models shown so far seemed to had been lifted straight from, or are on par with, the 3DS games and Let's Go.
  • Testosterone Brigade: Both Sonia and Nessa got hit with this once their designs were revealed.
  • Theme Pairing:
    • It's quite popular to ship Scorbunny with Buneary, due to them both being based on bunnies. This has also hyped some fans on Scorbunny's evolution, since they want to ship it with Buneary's evolution, Lopunny.
    • Wooloo gets shipped with Mareep and Cottonee, as they're both based on sheep.
  • Uncanny Valley: Milo's face does not look like it belongs on such a tall, muscular body, as his entire face is rendered as though it's meant to belong on the body of a child character instead, so seeing him as this giant, fully grown man with a very childish face is kind of off-putting to some. On top of that, the way one of his freckles is drawn (one directly on his nose) makes him look from certain angles like he doesn't have a nose.
  • Unfortunate Character Design: Galarian Weezing's design is meant to invoke Industrial Revolution-era factories and the pollution that they caused, as well as the business tycoons that profited off of them. However, the shape of the smoke pipes in conjunction with Weezing's rounded design makes it resemble a pair of bongs, not helped by the green smoke that surrounds it.

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