If it's true, then I'm officially done with the games. I'm tired of distant reboot regions, "Kanto pandering" that never goes beyond minor Easter Eggs and tired Charizard/Mewtwo/Pikachu shilling, and minimal-to-zero continuity.
The Spain/Italy idea is almost certain to be another game like either XY or SM, aka. more of the same old crap that's dragged this franchise down in the 3DS era.
I wish I could just turn the clock back to 10 or 15 years ago and fix what went wrong with this franchise.
Actually, just Gen 2. The Gen 7 Box Legends are still a trio (Solgaleo/Lunala/Necrozma), with the third one both causing conflict AND being a Dragon type, just as we've seen in every gen since Gen 3.
What I want is a game where the Box Legends aren't a trio, aren't Dragons, and have lore, but aren't at the center of the game's plot. With a few exceptions, the games have mostly recycled the same basic structure since RSE, and it's tiring.
This is one of many reasons why I still prefer Gens 1/2 -- they were before the series got locked into a repetitive formula. Although it doesn't seem like much now, being able to revisit Kanto in GSC was unexpected and mindblowing at the time. Nowadays, we can't even get a postgame that goes beyond the standard "breeding + Dex completion + Battle Facility," because GF thinks everyone's going to hop straight into competitive battling after beating the main game. :rolleyes2:
(Note, that this is another thing I have on my Gen 8 wishlist -- the postgame NEEDS to at least be on par with GSC/HGSS, if not better. Unless you're into competitive battling, the Gen 6 and 7 games offer practically nothing to do after beating the main game, which really kills the replayability of those games.)
A while back, a friend of mine brought up the idea of a region based on Chubu. It borders both of the regions Kanto and Johto are based on, which makes it a great setting for a Kanto/Johto sequel.
Ideally, its new Pokémon roster would follow the spirit of Gen 2, ie. around 100 new Pokémon, a healthy number of pre/evolutions, Pikaclone evolves and has a different type (like Marill), Pseudo-Legendary isn't a Dragon (like Tyranitar), Box Legendaries aren't a warring trio (like Lugia/Ho-Oh), and is generally designed to complement previous generations instead of replace them. The rest of the Regional Dex would include all of the first 251, their pre/evolutions from later gens, and a smattering of Gen 3-7 monsters to fill whatever gaps are left.
One rumor I've been seeing a lot of about Gen 8 is that it has "tradition vs innovation" as its main theme, which works especially well for a Kanto/Johto sequel. Kanto is a very industrial, urban region (innovation), while Johto is very historic and rural (tradition). On a meta level, you would also have the franchise taking the huge leap onto the powerful Switch (innovation), yet hearkening back to the original two regions for its setting (tradition).
However, if Gen 8 is a Kanto/Johto sequel, then we could see seasons return there. The part of Japan they're based on has a moderate four season climate (ie. hot, humid summers and slightly cold, unstable winters -- very similar to the Mid-Atlantic US, IMO), and we've even seen hints of "seasons" in HGSS with the fall colors in north Ecruteak.
I'm not sure how you feel, but I really want Gen 8 to return to Japan, and not just for Sinnoh remakes. Unova was okay, but the other two non-Japanese regions (Kalos, Alola) have largely been letdowns, albeit in different ways. Kalos had nice aesthetics and a great Pokédex, but a painfully generic story and dumbed-down gameplay, while Alola had an interesting story and memorable characters, but was also an awfully-designed region overloaded with poorly-implemented gimmicks (Trials, Ultra Beasts, Z-Moves, etc).
More importantly, I also feel that every new gen being a hard reset in a far-off country has destroyed whatever sense of continuity this franchise once had. When you discount the PWT and Battle Tree, the number of returning characters we've had since Gen 5 has been minimal, and with the lone exception of Sylveon, we've now gone three generations in a row without a single new pre-evolution or evolution.
This lack of continuity has also carried over into the anime, with each new saga since Gen 5 (BW, XY, SM) feeling more isolated and standalone compared to OS/AG/DP. Outside of Ash and the TRio (who both get a hard reset in personality and dump every Pokémon besides Pikachu/Meowth/Wobbuffet with each new gen), the cast gets completely replaced with every new region, and past character cameos have been minimal (with XY having none at all).
Going full reboot worked as a one-off thing for Gen 5, but it made far less sense for Gens 6 and 7, especially when GF clearly wanted to go in a more nostalgic direction with those gens compared to Unova. Enough with the reboots and far-flung regions. I'm ready to return to Japan and see some continuity in this franchise again.
That feature was probably meant to be a nod to Yellow, which was indirectly linked to HGSS due to being the direct prequel of GSC.
However, to bring up another Gen 4 example, DP did bring back Day/Night after the Gen 3 games had watered it down to nothing (and scrapped it altogether in FRLG). However, that was probably inevitable due to the DS being the first handheld to have a built-in clock (thus avoiding the cartridge battery issues that plagued GSC -- likely the reason Day/Night got nerfed so severely in Gen 3).
However, on the other hand, Seasons haven't returned since Gen 5, although part it may be due to them being inappropriate for the regions we've had since Unova. Hoenn and Alola are both tropical regions, and even Kalos is based on a place that has a very mild, temperate climate.
The pessimist in me is thinking we'll get some sort of fusion nonsense, especially since they've already done it twice with Box Legendaries (Kyurem, Necrozma).
Personally, I wish Gen 8 just dumps all of these dumb battle gimmicks, especially Mega Evolution. If GF isn't going to make anymore Megas, I'd rather they be removed from the games altogether than see Pokémon like the Johto Starters, Butterfree, Dragonite, Slowking, and Flygon be permanently shafted and left behind relative to their counterparts. Even Z-Moves at least had some equality to them and weren't so blatantly fanservicey.
This is why I think Gyms will come back in Gen 8. Trials are very obviously meant to be a one-off thing for Alola rather than a permanent replacement for Gyms. The same goes for Ultra Beasts and Regional Variants.
Z-Moves will probably stick around, but they'll be postgame-only, and we won't get any new exclusive ones.
I've heard theories that Zeraora may actually be a Gen 8 Pokémon and was only coded into USUM as a backup plan in case the next games didn't come out soon enough. Right now, it seems like GF is aiming for a late 2018/early 2019 release for Gen 8 (hence the reason why the anime has been rushing through the Alola storyline -- they're expecting to wrap up the SM arc by the end of this year).
Of course, this would mean Gen 7 being just a 2-year generation, but a lot about this gen has felt like it was just a stopgap, IMO. GF probably felt pressure to release something bigger than just a Kalos third version/sequel for the 20th anniversary, and the games still being on the 3DS meant they could reuse assets from XY/ORAS and save on development time. Alola being an island region based on Hawaii also meant that they didn't have to spend time making a large, elaborate region, and the Island Trials/Ultra Beasts gimmicks were a quick way for GF to add uniqueness to a game that was otherwise a rehash thrown together on the cheap. Z-Moves also provided a way for GF to add a new battle gimmick without having to create any new Pokémon designs/models (unlike Mega Evolution).
In essence, Alola has felt more akin to something like the Orange Islands, a stopgap designed to buy time for the next game, than a full region like Kanto, Johto, or Hoenn. Even the SM anime itself has felt like a glorified filler arc, with Ash being on vacation and not doing a badge quest. Gen 7 lasting only 2 years makes perfect sense. It's not meant to be a full-blown generation like the previous 6, so it shouldn't last as long as any of them.
But, there's also rumors going around about a Kanto sequel/reboot that features the M21 girl as the female player character (and a male player character that's either Red or looks like Red -- I'd assume that M21 Ash is wearing his outfit, as par for the course since DP). They're also saying that this game changes up the battle system in a big way and that "tradition vs innovation" will be a running theme.
Between that and the Spain/Italy rumor, I'm sure you already know which one I favor. ;) I'm all for revisiting past regions with new stories, especially after how bland Kalos (and Alola, to a lesser extent) turned out. The only reason we've even continued to get new regions every gen is because GF haven't figured out another way to introduce new Pokémon.
I see why they're doing it (the XY movies flopped, so the old formula had to be put to rest), but the execution leaves a lot to be desired. Why make a movie that's supposed to be about the 20th anniversary and OS era, yet shoehorn in a bunch of random, irrelevant nonsense from Sinnoh? It promotes neither the current games, nor the anniversary. I don't get it.
I hate the Hilda x N ship, as well as N ships in general. I also hate ships that involve either Silver or Paul. These guys are nowhere close to being good boyfriend material, and I'm tired of seeing strong female characters getting cut down for the sake of being shipped with these characters.
I hate these kinds of ships in other fandoms, as well. The popularity of "Reylo" in Star Wars fandom makes me vomit.