Pokémon Scarlet and Violet Starters
Image: The Pokémon Company

After enough trailers, promos and leaks to fill a Pokédex five times over, we are are very nearly there. Pokémon Scarlet and Violet officially release tomorrow (18th November) and today we have had the first chance to see what the critics think.

We have gathered together reviews from across the internet to give coverage of the critical consensus, but we couldn't go exploring elsewhere before reminding you all what we thought of the latest franchise entries.

In short, we had a good time with the games, granting them 7/10 in our review. While we enjoyed the storylines and the god-send that is the Let's Go feature, we couldn't help but feel a little let down by some sizeable performance issues.

It’s familiar and fresh at the same time, and even though its three-path approach doesn’t stray too far from the formula, this feels like a big step in the right direction for Pokémon. After Legends: Arceus and Scarlet & Violet, we think open-world Pokémon should be here to stay.

For the most part, we don't seem to be alone in our rating. Let's dive in to the reviews from other outlets:

We will kick things off with those who had a thoroughly good time with the games. GameSpot gave Scarlet and Violet an impressive 8/10 in its review, praising the new Terastallizing and Egg mechanics while not being too put off by the performance.

While undercooked presentation and visual issues hold the games back, Pokemon Scarlet and Violet are still the best mainline Pokemon games in years.

Metro gave the games a similarly positive 4/5 in its review. While the outlet wasn't in love with the new Pokémon, it's respect for the games' ambition shone through, calling it "the best Pokémon game on Nintendo Switch".

Pokémon has always been drowning in underutilised potential, so it’s not hard to point to an infinite number of other things that could be done with it. But apart from that, there are relatively few practical faults with Scarlet and Violet.

Moving down the positivity scale a little, The Guardian, much like ourselves, thought that the games showed good improvements, though they are let down by poor performance.

Much like Arceus, Scarlet and Violet are games that dream big, but are beaten down by reality. It’s not hyperbole to say that Scarlet/Violet is one of the worst-looking – and running – games I’ve ever played.

While Polygon does not provide an official rating, its review is equally mixed, with the critic praising the games' scale but believing that the open world does not live up to Pokémon Legends: Arceus.

It’s the nature of open-world games to invite you into certain areas while deterring you from others. But Scarlet and Violet lack many of the methods previous Pokémon games used to signpost whether you were in a dangerous zone.

Eurogamer echoes a similar view, praising the games' new Pokémon, open world and level-scaling, but concedes that the games' graphics are their downfall.

If more time and polish had been applied to Scarlet and Violet, then they could have lived up to their ambition and been the expansive world many fans, myself included, have dreamed of. Yet the Pokémon series has a schedule to follow and it waits for no Slowpoke.

Finally, GamesRadar+ gave the title 3/5 in its review, though it was far more disappointed in the games' open world and performance despite praising Toby Fox's original score.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet should have been a bright and bold entry that sets the series up for future expansion, but an attempt to modernize while staying loyal to the past hasn't really succeeded in doing either one

Be sure to check out our review above, or, if you would like to hear our thoughts alongside footage from the games, check it out in video form below!

Will you be picking up Pokémon Scarlet and Violet soon? Let us know which you'll be catching in the comments below!

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