Pokemon fans have dug deep into Sword and Shield to uncover a hidden Detective Pikachu Easter egg as a nod to the 2019 movie.
Grab your Sherlock Holmes hats and a magnifying glass because it turns out there's a well-placed Detective Pikachu Easter egg hiding in plain sight of Pokemon Sword and Shield. While Pikachu is the best-known Pokemon out there thanks to his appearance in the anime and becoming the official mascot of the Pokemon Company, he's also made a name for himself with the Detective Pikachu spin-off game and movie.
In 2016, Great Detective Pikachu: Birth of a New Duo took the tried and tested formula of Pokemon games in a new direction and introduced a talking version of the fan-favourite - similar to Meowth from the cartoons. Complete with an adorable outfit, players joined this talking Pika and headed out into the wide world of Pokemon to solve crimes and stop a sinister plot in its tracks. Although the game found a niche, the name Detective Pikachu was brought to the mainstream with the Ryan Reynolds-led movie from 2018. Now, Detective Pikachu is back on the case inside Game Freak's latest title.
What is the Detective Pikachu Easter egg?
Posting on Reddit, u/aSuspiciousPanda showed off the Easter egg that's definitely a nod to Detective Pikachu. Even if some players might've spotted it on their first tour of the Galar Region in 2019, this is the first time we've seen the Detective Pikachu reference. When talking to a man outside the Pokemon Center in Hulbury, he tells players, "I hear there's a Pokemon that's a great detective". Unless it's a Disney crossover with Basil The Great Mouse Detective, it's a not-so-subtle confirmation that Detective Pikachu is out there somewhere in Galar.
The post soon blew up on Reddit, with plenty of players saying they've never seen this conversation during their playthrough of either Sword and Shield or the newly introduced DLCs. One wrote, "Woah, never noticed this either! Nice find", while another impressed fan added, "That’s a twist, that’s very twisty". It's unclear how the detective conversation is triggered, with the general consensus agreeing it depends on a particular time of day. Others maintain they've still never seen this NPC, so does it make him a ghost from Red and Blue's haunting Lavender Town?
What does the Detective Pikachu Easter egg mean?
The Detective Pikachu Easter egg has also sparked a conversation about the upcoming sequel(s). After the box office success of the movie, Nintendo announced a Detective Pikachu for the Nintendo Switch. There hasn't been an update since May 2019, leading some to wonder what the delay is. Elsewhere, there's no official word from Warner Bros. on whether there will be another movie. Thankfully, discovering a Detective Pikachu Easter egg well over a year after Sword and Shield first hit shelves is a promising sign that Nintendo hasn't forgotten about that electric fuzzball.
Of course, a potential Detective Pikachu tie isn't the only Easter egg to the rest of the franchise's history. As well as the recurring "Ghost Girl" who's made her way into several games, there's the reappearance of Shigeki Morimoto. Even if some think the detective reference is actually about Gumshoos, we're on board with the idea of Detective Pikachu being hot on the trail of another mystery in Galar. Whether you agree or not, we're accepting that Detective Pikachu is canon with the rest of the Pokeverse.
With Pokemon celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2021, and growing reports of a Nintendo Direct being just over the hill, the discovery of a Detective Pikachu Easter egg couldn't be timed better. It's almost like a real-life case for the mouse himself.
Images via Nintendo | Warner Bros.