To all the Pokemon fans out their hoping to start Pokemon Sword and Shield with a Shiny Grookey, prepare to be disappointed: a recent datamine has revealed that it is impossible for the new starter Pokemon to be Shiny.
Pokemon dataminer Kaphotics uncovered many surprising things, including the fact that the starter Pokemon in Pokemon Sword and Shield (Grookey, Scorbunny, and Sobble) as well as the legendary Pokemon Zacian and Zamazenta are all Shiny locked. This means that those five Pokemon will never show up as Shiny in typical encounters, although it is possible to breed a Shiny version of these Pokemon. It is also possible that Shiny variants of these Pokemon could show up in future event distributions.
For those unfamiliar with the term, Shiny Pokemon are a unique variant of Pokemon that have all the same moves and stats as the regular variant, with the only difference being an alternate color palette and a sparkling animation that plays whenever they enter a battle. Many Pokemon players can go a whole game never seeing one, as the chances of a Shiny Pokemon spawning is only 1 in 4,096, at least according to the most recent Pokemon games. There are ways to increase the chances of encountering a Shiny Pokemon, but it can still take hours, especially if players are trying to get a Shiny starter.
As usual with models shown in the overworld, the legendaries and starters you can obtain in-game are shiny locked.— Kurt (@Kaphotics) November 11, 2019
Along with this disappointing news, came something of a spoiler: the datamine revealed the hidden abilities of all three starters. Grookey will have Grassy Surge, which turns the ground into a Grassy Terrain when Grookey enters a battle. Sobble will have Sniper, which powers up moves if they become critical hits when attacking. Scorbunny will have Libero, which has the same effect as Protean in that it changes Scorbunny's type to the type of the move it's about to use.
This isn't the first time Pokemon have been Shiny locked. The concept was first introduced in Pokemon Black and White, which made it impossible to encounter shiny versions of Reshiram, Victini, and Zekrom, despite the game including Shiny versions of these Pokemon. The more recent Pokemon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! also prevented the starter versions of Eevee and Pikachu from being Shiny, so this is pretty much standard for Pokemon games now.
Fans are already upset about several things with Pokemon Sword and Shield, including removing fan favorite moves and the national Pokedex. No doubt some fans will be disappointed by this decision too, especially since many are still bitter about that fact that many fan favorite Pokemon have been cut out of the upcoming Pokemon Sword and Shield, including about two-thirds of Generation 1.
Pokemon Sword and Shield will be released for the Nintendo Switch on November 15, 2019.