New Battle System for Pokemon Scarlet & Violet Explained

The new trailer for Pokemon Scarlet & Violet introduced a host of new mechanics that drastically change the franchise’s combat system. Here is an analysis overview of the information presented so far.

Pokemon has been quite routine regarding its turn-based battles. While the base system isn’t getting an overhaul, the entire competitive meta is drastically evolving. Gone are the days when type weaknesses were everything. Shutting down {okemon doesn’t punish players as much anymore either.

These new changes, seen in the Pokemon Scarlet & Violet competitive trailer, promise huge steps forward. With new moves, new held items and new shapes to use, the brand new additions directly address many of the stale elements that previously plagued combat.


Pokemon Scarlet & Violet Ranked Mode

Pokemon Scarlet & Violet seem to be reintroducing PvP-ranked battles. This isn’t necessarily confirmed, but more so speculated based on the trainer profiles shown in the trailer.

Classified is not an entirely new feature since Sword and Shield implemented the feature as well. But this competitively groomed PvP element was completely missing from the more recent episodes: Legends Arceus and BDSP.

The developers are definitely focusing more on the competitive side of things this time around – an aspect often neglected by The Pokemon Company. Judging by the trailer and their overall goal with Scarlet and Violet, the ranked mode will return more competitively than ever before.

But to make a fiercely competitive game, the developers had to take some steps back from the quality of life changes introduced in Arceus.

Pokemon Scarlet & Violet


Player profiles and 3v3 battles in the teaser indicate a ranked mode in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet.

Pokemon Scarlet & Violet new moves

One of the best new moves added in Pokemon Scarlet & Violet is easily Shed Tail, which creates a decoy with no health costs, then swaps places with a waiting party Pokemon. The decoy effectively refuels the next hit.

The new move allows the player to exchange Pokemon without being completely penalized for doing so – a gameplay element that greatly influenced the competitive game.

In the trailer, Cyclizar is the Pokemon that uses the move, but it’s not necessarily confirmed that the move is exclusive to the Legendary. Shed Tail could very well become a brand new staple for several competitive Pokemon.

Pokemon Scarlet & Violet


Shed Tail creates a decoy with no health costs, then trades with a waiting Pokemon

Pokemon Scarlet & Violet New Items Owned

The new items debuting in Pokemon Scarlet & Violet aim to create more varied play styles. Loaded Dice should allow players to use multistrike moves more efficiently, although the exact success rate has not been officially revealed.

Anyway, even if multistrike doesn’t end up seeing competitive play in the top tiers, the implementation of Loaded Dice allows more casual players to use the multistrike moves without feeling completely in the whim of RNG. It really sucks when a move like Bullet Seed only hits twice.

Mirror Herb is also added, which is sure to bring competitive play to counter some of the more stat-boosting compositions by cloning an opponent’s raises. These will not all be the ones participating in the full game, but will serve as a great teaser for the full release of the game.

Terastalize in Pokemon Scarlet & Violet

This new mechanic looks incredibly flashy and creates glitter and a whole crown on one Pokemon. As aesthetic as the twinkling lights may be, terastallizing isn’t just for looks – it changes the type attribute of said Pokemon.

The planning-type benefits have been a hugely important game mechanic that has remained largely unchanged since Generation I. The introduction of terastallizing essentially allows players to pick one Pokemon that isn’t completely useless against a specific matchup.

It is not yet clear how this form works exactly. Do all Pokemon have access to terastallizing? Can players choose which attribute to transform into? Is this a one time deal per fight?

Pokemon Scarlet & Violet


Hydro Pump is not effective against Coalossal, which is originally Fire and Rock type.

There are countless questions, but one thing is clear: Pokemon’s competitive landscape is evolving.

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