Nintendo Is Handing Out Refunds For Pokemon Scarlet And Violet

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Pokemon Scarlet and Violet players have shamed Nintendo so hard for the games’ issues, that the company is actually doling out refunds.

By Jason Collins
| Published

The recently released Pokemon Scarlet and Pokemon Violet are apparently so buggy that video game giant Nintendo is doing something we never thought possible — giving refunds. Has anyone seen a flying pig? Nintendo and The Pokemon Company first announced the game this February.

The announcement was a surprising one, considering that the newly announced games were following the recent release of Pokemon Legends: Arceus, whose graphics prompted fans to yell at each other. Unfortunately, the release of Scarlet and Violet proved to be premature.

According to Stealth Optional, both Pokemon Scarlet and Violet have failed to live up to the fandom’s expectations and currently stand as the worst-reviewed games of the entire Pokemon series. Apparently, the games suffer from an astounding number of technical issues, performance problems, and underwhelming visuals that have distressed the fandom to the point that the community is asking Nintendo for refunds. That isn’t so surprising; disgruntled fans ask for refunds all the time.

But what’s surprising about this is that Nintendo is handing out refunds.

Nobody expected Nintendo would give refunds, especially if the game is playable — and both Pokemon Scarlet and Pokemon Violet are playable. However, the fandom took the issue to social media, sharing clips of the games’ performance problems, calling the masses to avoid purchasing this technical disaster; thus sending Nintendo and Game Freak (the developer) a very clear message. Nintendo acknowledged the mistake and accepted the refund requests.

It’s exceptionally rare to see a Nintendo game release in a bad state, let alone two concurrent releases since the company adheres to very high and strict standards regarding its releases. So much so that third-party developers and publishers can’t patch the game unless the patch is reviewed and approved by Nintendo internally. So, what exactly happened with Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, and how did those two games ended up being so bombed by the critics and the fandom?

Well, it’s not all so bad, actually.

There are those who are actually praising the newly released Pokemon games for their open-world design and other features. Still, it would seem that the games’ technical issues are ruining the experience for all. Many are actually blaming the games’ developer, Game Freak, stating that they, along with Nintendo, have become lazy and offered a half-baked game as money-grabbing tactics.

Others, however, blame the aging hardware of Nintendo Switch, the world’s most popular handheld ever, for the performance issues of both games.

The latter argument is a shaky one; console-native games are optimized to work with specific hardware. Assuming that the hardware is in working condition and that the game is well-optimized, any console-native release should run smoothly. That argument is the equivalent of designing the game to work on PS5 or XSX/S and then saying that their hardware isn’t powerful enough to run the release — it’s nonsense.

Regardless of why Pokemon Scarlet and Violet are having these performance issues, we can all hope that Nintendo will issue more than just refunds — updates will be in order.

In fact, there’s a good possibility for Nintendo to fix the game and bring it to playable levels. Let’s not forget that Cyberpunk 2077, which will probably remain known throughout gaming history as the worst release ever, was so bad that it nearly ruined its developer and publisher. But CD Projekt RED has fixed the game up to the point where it’s now enjoyed by millions of players.