Pokémon Mystery Dungeon Deserves a Brand New Game

A popular sight in the spin off side of the Pokémon community is the Mystery Dungeon series and with a recent remake in 2020, fans wonder whether this fan favorite will receive a new game. Evidently, this dream isn't so much a fantasy as there are reasons for it to potentially happen. Reasons the Pokémon Company should consider.

Pokémon Mystery Dungeon Deserves a brand New Game

What Pokémon Mystery Dungeon fans dream the most of is a brand new game of their favorite series. And we should not consider it as entitlement. Many reasons show that their universe is long overdue for an expansion rather than only a remake for old time’s sake. Its universe is personally what lead me to the overall franchise. It’s even to this day a personal preference over the main sets of game.

While the gameplay is repetitive across all five entries, I should note that enjoyment comes from what surrounds the game: the story, the characters and its music which seem to always successfully deliver. This is what attracted most players to stick around even after its long slumber.

Unused Generations

With the upcoming release of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet in November, the franchise will enter its ninth generation. But what does that have to do with Pokémon Mystery Dungeon? The most recent set of Pokémon introduced within this universe is the sixth generation with Super Mystery Dungeon. This means that by next year three entire generations still will have not been used in this setting. In other words over 184 Pokémon will be unused in what’s always been described as a vast world.

“A child’s dream can’t be destroyed by adults.” -Quote from Super Mystery Dungeon

Since the ninth generation is near, would it not make sense to take the opportunity from the hype and create a new Mystery Dungeon game based on the Pokémon of the Paldea region, if not also those of the previous two generations? If anything, combining only these three generations would still be more vast than when they did Gates to Infinity. Of course the best case scenario is to have all nine generations into this new game.

Special mention to the Artist Sifyro for a 2019 piece of fanart which emulated the artwork of the series so well it confused fans into thinking it was real for a hot second. The comments serves as proof. It just goes to show how much fans would really like a brand new entry, one that could use these recent generations. You can check out the mentioned tweet below.

As of now, not even the 2020 Rescue Team remake brought any of the newer Pokémon, only the fourth generation. Perhaps they are being kept away for this hypothetically new game? Only time will tell.

Success of Thematics

Should the argument of new Pokémon having been released since not suffice, we could talk about the very success this premise found in the community. The idea of turning into a Pokémon, meeting what will become your most treasured friend and go on a grand adventure with them is every Pokémon kid’s dream even after reaching adulthood. This series is the embodiment of this common dream. Some found in this universe an escape from every day life, a way to deal with certain real life issues the games don’t shy away from addressing.

“The important thing is not how long you live…It’s what you accomplish with your life.” -Quote from Explorers of Sky

Coincidentally, it’s not a stretch to think the other recent 2022 Pokémon release: Legends Arceus, draws inspiration from what Spike Chunsoft did with Pokémon Mystery Dungeon. You are a human transported back in time back when Sinnoh barely cohabited with Pokémon, in a similar introduction sequence. Without going into spoiler territory the stories shares similar flow and traits, at least from what I’ve seen. You could say that if you liked the premise of one of the games’ story, you will certainly like the others.

To put it simply, we can point at the success of Legends Arceus to encourage the franchise to try the mystery dungeon formula again. Its success shows it is still a format that can work. That’s not mentioning other medias spawning from the concept of reincarnating in an entirely different world, sometimes looking different, e.g. the Isekai subgenre in Japanese animation.

A Growing and Active Fanbase

The series can use the newer species, and there is no reason to be afraid in doing another title once more. However would it all matter if there is little audience to enjoy it? You may be wrong to think all of that. As already mentioned, there is a fanbase for this series and not just a small one. What if I told you that even six years after the last new game, there was a public praying, hoping that the next Nintendo Direct would showcase anything about the series, whether it’s a game, merchandise and even anime series or movies?

“I know that the world is rotten right now, but if we can make it a world worth living in again then wouldn’t you want to stay here with your friends?” -Quote from Gates to Infinity

If you doubt on the number of fans waiting for new stuff about their favorite universe, I suggest you go into Twitter on the 2nd of August next year. You’ll notice a particular trending hashtag: “#MysteryDungeonDay”, and what would you find most? Fanart, memes and videos dedicated to Pokémon games of this genre overshadowing that of other Mystery Dungeon games. Further more, they show their celebration by replacing their profile picture with sprites from the games. The fact that an entire community can manipulate Twitter’s algorithm into being a top trend in a country as big and eventful as the US is telling of their number.

And no, the fanbase does not become active just one day a year only to celebrate. Certain accounts on Twitter posts frequently on this series. There are also active discord servers and even a subreddit dedicated to discussing their beloved games everyday.

Potential of a New Pokémon Mystery Dungeon Game

In short, we have new useable Pokémon species. An audience for the type of premise and themes these games offer. A huge and active fanbase for a mere spinoff. However that’s only a portion of the reasons video game producers would want to make another title. What about ideas? Is there anything they could do to warrant a new game?

“I don’t want to leave… I want to stay longer… With my invaluable… Irreplaceable friend…” -Quote from Red/Blue Rescue Team / Rescue Team DX

Aside from the unused generations I mentioned earlier. the next game could focus on perfecting the gameplay. I say the issue that put off outsider is the dungeon crawler aspect. Even for veterans, it does not seem to be a popular preference, but then again maybe I’m wrong. I think that to satisfy this aspect, maybe it needs to step away from the rogue-like gameplay loop. It may sound strange, but the likes of Poképark and Rumble Blast holds an interesting exploration and combat system.

Of course if they don’t put the standard gameplay, then it might not be “Mystery Dungeon” by name anymore. Still, I think it could be its own gameplay and still be a part of the series at its core. It can be an open world exploration game with randomly generated dungeons, with active combat. What matters most to fans is to keep this charming alternate “Pokémon Society” universe, having friends and going into adventures.

If you want to read more about Pokémon Mystery Dungeon while waiting for this hypothetical new game, there is an article about the remake Rescue Team DX with a link to the free demo. Perhaps I will do more articles on the series! And should there be news about it, I will be sure to keep you informed!