Pokémon Scarlet and Violet: The disturbing implications of the new trailer’s “Litleo Tuft” item

The Pokémon Company released a new gameplay footage video for Pokémon Scarlet and Violet on October 6, with footage showing a “Litleo Tuft” item drawing attention from fans around the globe.

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet are the latest titles in the Pokémon series and look to be adding an assortment of new features to the classic formula like “Let’s Go!” and Auto Battles. These new features allow trainers to send off their Pokémonin a given direction with them automatically battling the wild Pokémonthey come across along the way. There will be plenty of new and old Pokémon showing up as well, including Litleo, a lion cub Pokémon that first appears in X and Y. This fire and normal type Pokémon evolves into Pyroar by leveling up.

That brings us to a new feature that was introduced using Litleo in the latest Pokémon Scarlet and Violet trailer. The scene in question starts around 2:50.

In the trailer we see a trainer walking around with Quaxly, the water-type Pokémon of the game’s three starters. The trainer then uses Let’s Go! to send off Quaxly to fight against Litleo in an Auto Battle, a new, streamlined way to battle wild Pokémon that doesn’t require direct involvement from the trainer. Due to Quaxly’s type advantage, it has no problem taking down the Litleo in its path. But it wasn’t the battles that players latched onto. It was the “Litleo Tuft” item that popped up on the middle right of the screen.

This “tuft” likely refers to the red patch of hair on Litleo’s head, a symbol of the little lion cub’s mane that has now become an item players can acquire.

Given the context of the scene, it seems as if Quaxly ripped off Litleo’s tuft of red hair after defeating it, which shocked fans around the world. In Pokémon games, trainers are generally protective and respectful of Pokémon, with an ethical consistency of trainers not harming them. In spite of this, there’s the Litleo Tuft item, a material viewers saw as “bequeathed” by a fallen Pokémon. Some even compared tearing materials off of defeated monsters to the Monster Hunter series.

However, it appears that Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s material gathering elements don’t involve hunting so to speak, with the official website describing the materials as being “dropped” by wild Pokémon. While a “drop” in gaming terms often refers to loot that drops off a fallen foe, hopefully in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s case, they’re simply items that the Pokémon inadvertently drop while in the heat of battle or after being captured. That Litleo Tuft wasn’t torn off Litleo’s head. Litleo simply dropped it. Let’s hope that applies to the Shinx Fang item as well.

Past Pokémon titles have contained items along the same lines, though, such as the Dragon Fang and Razor Claw that are likely stand-ins for Pokémon body parts. It’s also possible to steal these items off other Pokémon with certain moves. Pokémon Legends: Arceus even has instances where wild Pokémon drop Razor Claws or Razor Fangs when defeated. At any rate, items that appear to be parts of Pokémon is something we’ve seen in past games as well.

On the other hand, Pokémon Scarlet and Violet seems to have specific items referencing the Pokémon that dropped them which may be why these instances are getting so much attention. It bears repeating that these items are simply dropped by the Pokémon, however. Putting aside whether a tuft of fur or teeth are something one just happens to drop, let’s go out there and gather those materials.

What’s possibly most exciting about the items Pokémondrop is that they can be used to make Technical Machines, or TMs. TMs are a familiar item in the series that allow Pokémon to learn new moves, and there’s a machine for making them called the Technical Machine Machine available at Pokémon Centers across the region. This is done by using your items and League Points (LP) which are obtained as you progress the story or by trading in items. By the looks of it, TMs are back to being a consumable item.

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet are scheduled to release for the Nintendo Switch on November 18.

Written by. Nick Mosier based on the original Japanese article (original article’s publication date: 2022-10-07 12:04 JST)

Hideaki Fujiwara
Hideaki Fujiwara


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