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Who Is ILCA, Inc? Developers Behind Pokemon Diamond and Pearl Remakes

Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl will be coming to the Nintendo Switch later this year.

By Chris Simpson

February 26, 2021

Pokemon Diamond and Pearl remakes have been rumoured for some time, and the Pokemon Company finally confirmed that they are indeed on the way during Friday’s Pokemon Presents video. However, the remakes will not be handled by Game Freak, the developer that usually produces games for the franchise – that honour will go to ILCA, Inc.

What other games have ILCA worked on besides these Pokemon remakes?

ILCA (which stands for I Love Computer Art) was formed in 2010, and the Japanese studio has since worked on titles such as Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, Yakuza 0, NieR: Automata, Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown and Dragon Quest XI, among others. Most notably, ILCA is also the studio that worked on the cloud-based Pokemon storage system Pokemon Home, so it isn’t completely new to the franchise. ILCA’s familiarity with the Pokemon games will hopefully ensure these remakes can live up to expectations.

What do we know about Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl?

Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl are the second set of Pokemon remakes to come to the Nintendo Switch after 2019’s Pokemon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Eevee! and from the trailer, it appears the battle system will be presented in a similar format to those games, as well as Pokemon Sword and Shield. However, unlike in those recent games, the overworld of the Sinnoh region will retain the more traditional top-down style that will be instantly familiar to long-time fans of the series, albeit updated with modern graphics. According to the Pokemon Company, “the sense of scale in the originals’ towns and routes has been carefully preserved,” while “easy-to-understand, player-friendly conveniences of the modern Pokemon series” have also been introduced. The three starter Pokemon will remain Turtwig, Chimchar and Piplup. The trailer promises a “late 2021” release.

Why isn’t Game Freak developing the remakes?

Game Freak traditionally handles all core Pokemon games and their remakes, including FireRed and LeafGreen, HeartGold and SoulSilver, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire and Let’s Go. The studio is not developing Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, but they have a good reason – Game Freak will instead be working on a new open-world RPG called Pokemon Legends: Arceus, which has been likened to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. The game looks to be an exciting and much-needed reinvention of the traditional Pokemon formula, so the fact that Game Freak will be able to concentrate on the new title fully is a promising sign.

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Chris Simpson
@CJSimpson9

Hey there! I'm a writer and journalist and I've been gaming for as long as I can remember - I started with the Amiga and the Sega Mega Drive and haven't looked back. If something is nerdy then I probably enjoy it.

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