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Is This Pokemon Sword and Shield CoroCoro Leak a Fake?

pokemon sword shield galar wheezing

A new image claimed to be a leaked page from Japanese magazine CoroCoro shows previously unannounced new Pokemon from Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield. The leak shows several of the recently announced new Galar region forms of certain Pokemon, including Galarian Zigzagoon and Galarian Weezing. Two new Pokemon are also shown, including what's presumed to be a Galarian Arbok and a Ferris wheel Pokemon that could be a Galarian form or evolution of Masquerain, Kelfki, or Comfey.

The problem is that there's broad agreement that the leak is a fake. The reasons why, however, are difficult to verify. Some are claiming that CoroCoro magazine only ever uses a Pokemon game's official logo, while this leak shows a logo using the "SWSH" shorthand for Pokemon Sword and Shield. Others have problems with the Japanese writing, noting a lack of furigana (pronunciation help) over the kanji, changes in how regional forms are referred compared to previous Pokemon games, and generally sloppy writing in general.

RELATED: Pokemon Sword and Shield Fans Think Galarian Weezing Looks Like A Bong

There's also general criticism of the new Pokemon designs themselves, though this kind of criticism is rarely of substance and often backfires. The Galarian Arbok form shows that the snake is now brown, has a skeleton outline on their front, two lemon slice shapes, and has poison dripping from their mouth. It seems overly simple and sloppy in general as if the artist was trying to scream Ghost/Poison. The Galarian Masquerain seems like a better design, but turning the Pokemon into a Ferris wheel is odd enough.

Finally, there are the very small screenshots slipped in between the key art for each Pokemon. Even in a magazine, these screenshots would be microscopic. If the magazine is making text larger than the screenshots to be readable, then something's off. CoroCoro does use small screenshots in their magazines, but they historically border them in bright colors to help them pop out from the page.

galar arbok galar masquerain

All evidence seems to indicate that this "leak" is faked. Someone with some time on their hands could easily have organized a mix of official Pokemon Sword and Shield image assets for new Pokemon with fanart and then printed it. It wouldn't be the first time. That doesn't mean that this image is 100% proven to be fake, however. Galarian Arbok and Galarian Masquerain could be Game Freak's next announcements for Pokemon Sword and Shield. Who could have predicted Galarian Weeezing, after all? But it's still likely a fake leak.

MORE: 10 Pokemon We Want to See Get Galarian Forms in Pokemon Sword and Shield

Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield release November 15 exclusively on Nintendo Switch.

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