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Is there a rival in New Pokémon Snap?

New Pokemon Snap Phil
New Pokemon Snap Phil (Image credit: Nintendo)

Is there a rival in New Pokémon Snap?

Best answer: Yes, there is! His name is Phil, and he will be competing against you as you assist Professor Mirror with his research.

New friends and new rivals

New Pokémon Snap is the upcoming sequel to the beloved N64 game and the latest Pokémon game to arrive on the Nintendo Switch. It places players behind the camera lens in the brand new Lental region, though you won't be making the journey alone. Joining you on your safari is Professor Mirror and research team members Rita and Phil. Your mission is to capture every Pokémon in the region on film, and it seems like you'll get plenty of help in that regard.

But what's a Pokémon game without a rival? While It's not explicitly stated in the recent overview trailer, from the description of the video, "a new rival" is introduced. So we're putting our money on that rival being Phil, Professor Mirror's research assistant.

May the best photographer win

New Pokemon Snap Professor

New Pokemon Snap Professor (Image credit: Nintendo)

We don't know much about Phil, but judging from his sassy intro, we'd guess that he takes his job very seriously. When Phil arrives on the scene, his demeanor seems to check all of the rival checkmarks like a serious expression and stomping in like he owns the place. When he places his hands onto his hips, his badge gleams in the light for a moment. What's his deal? We also notice that his badge is the same badge found on Professor Mirror's lab coat. Maybe we'll be competing for the Professor's attention?

Most Pokémon games have a rival, whether it's a kid who grew up in your town, your best friend, or even the occasional bad guy. However, the original Pokémon Snap didn't, so this may add a refreshing new layer to the game's story. Whether we compete to see who can catalog all of the Pokémon in the region or for the Professor's approval remains to be seen. We'll be sure to cover the Lental region inside and out when New Pokémon Snap arrives on the Nintendo Switch on April 30th. Don't forget to preorder the game now so you can play it the moment it releases.

New Pokémon Snap releases on April 30, 2021 on the Nintendo Switch.

Zackery Cuevas is a writer for Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore. He likes playing video games, talking about video games, writing about video games, and most importantly, complaining about video games. If you're cool, you can follow me on Twitter @Zackzackzackery.