The Next Three Pokemon Are Making Unite A Lot More Complicated

Ever since Pokemon Unite began its one-year anniversary event, there’s been an explosion of new content. Multiple new game modes like Boss Rush and Pika Party were added, three new characters – Glaceon, Buzzwole, and Tyranitar – were released in quick succession, and a new collectible perk system known as Boost Emblems was introduced. Part two of the anniversary event begins later this week with a new map called Theia Sky Ruins – which replaces Remoat Stadium – and three more characters, releasing bi-weekly throughout September. It’s a great time to jump back into Unite to check out what’s new, but for those of us that have been consistent players, it’s especially exciting. The additions aren’t just making Unite bigger, they’re also making it more complex. And if the next three characters are any indication, the skill ceiling for new Pokemon is just going to keep going up.

This week players will be able to earn the Unite License for the Legendary Pokemon Mew through an in-game challenge. As you might expect, Mew has a wide selection of abilities to choose from. Instead of two choices in each move slot, Mew has three, and it can change which moves it has throughout the match. Not only does this mean we’ll (hopefully) see a much broader range of builds for Mew, but it will also be one of the most difficult Pokemon to master. Moves that are powerful early on may not scale as well later, and choosing the right moves to counter the specific Pokemon on the enemy team may be essential to performing well with Mew. It will take a lot more game sense to use Mew effectively – perhaps more than any other character.

Mew isn’t the first complex character (I’m still working on my Hoopa skills) but it’s notable that all three of September’s new Pokemon are arguably just as complicated. Dodrio, the first new Speedster since launch, is joining Unite on September 14. It has a few unique mechanics that make it considerably different from every other Pokemon in the game. As Dodrio runs around it builds up a “sprint gauge” that increases movement speed and booster attack damage. All of its moves either fill the sprint gauge or become more powerful when the gauge is full, so you have to constantly stay in motion and use its moves in a very deliberate way to maximize its potential. Dodrio also divides its held Aeos Energy into three stacks when it scores, instead of dunking everything at once, which changes the way your approach scoring so significantly that it deserves its own article. This is the weirdest Pokemon yet.

Last but definitely not least is Scizor, or more accurately, Scyther/Scizor, which joins Unite on September 28. Scizor is the first Pokemon in Unite that doesn’t automatically evolve when you level up, but instead will only evolve from Scyther into Scizor if you select a specific move. Scyther and Scizor are completely different Pokemon. Not only do they have different moves, but they have different stats, different boosted attacks, and different playstyles. Scizor is a brawler that has great sustainability with shields and damage reduction, while Scyther is a quick assassin that can ambush targets and reset its cooldowns with well-timed attacks. Like the other two new Pokemon, Scizor is unlike anything we’ve seen before in Unite, and will require a significant learning curve to play.

Things were already getting more complex with the introduction of Boost Medals, but these three Pokemon are a clear indication that Unite wants everyone to step up their game in year two. Learning how to use these characters on the new, more involved map is going to be a real treat for those that feel like they’ve mastered the fundamentals of the game, and they increase the overall skill ceiling of the game significantly. It’s exciting to see such imaginative, rule-bending Pokemon like this. It’s clear that we haven’t even begun to see everything Unite has to offer.

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