It seems that Pokémon Sword & Shield is losing features by the day. Not only will each game now only feature Pokémon that can be caught in the Galar region, but it won't be possible to use Mega Evolutions and Z-Moves in Pokémon Sword & Shield.
The changes to Pokémon Sword & Shield were confirmed during Nintendo's Treehouse: Live presentation as part of E3 2019 (thanks, VG247), which will drastically change the competitive scene going forward.
The loss of Mega Evolution and Z-Moves in Pokémon Sword & Shield has already received a backlash from fans, as the new Dynamax feature (where Pokémon transform into giant-sized creatures) has been heralded as a lazy addition to the series, as the Pokémon only increase in size and their design remains the same. Mega Evolutions shook up the competitive scene when they were introduced, with many older Pokémon like Kangaskhan received huge buffs and classic Pokémon received interesting new designs. Z-Moves added some inventive cutscenes for the attacks used by Pokémon like Eevee and Snorlax, and their raw power altered the strategies used by many players.
Will Game Freak Change Its Mind About Mega Evolutions?
It's possible that a backlash from the fans might prompt Game Freak to change its mind, but there are only a few more months until the game is released, which doesn't leave a lot of time for key features to be implemented. It's possible that the missing Pokémon and the cut features could be added in an update, or in a third version of the game that is released further down the line. The fans convinced Nintendo to change its mind regarding the online modes in Super Mario Maker 2, so anything is possible.
Pokémon Sword & Shield was promising to be the biggest Pokémon adventure yet, with the power of a home console allowing the series to greatly expand its scope. The latest cuts that have been announced for the game now suggest otherwise, with a much smaller Pokédex and the absence of features that drastically changed the game making the game have less content than Pokémon Sun & Moon.
Pokémon Sword & Shield are due to be released for the Nintendo Switch on November 15, 2019.