Editor’s Note: The leaked images that were previously featured in this article have been removed due to a Digital Millenium Copyright Act claim from The Pokémon Company International, Inc. (“TPCi”).
Similar to how Meowth got a new form separate from the original in Pokémon Sun and Moon, several leaks for Sword and Shield suggest that there will be a third line for the lovable cat—and it won’t evolve into Persian this time.
The rough-looking Galarian Meowth seems like a fluffier mix of the Alolan and normal variants. It has extremely big, gray fur and a wide smile along with some sharp angles that make it look pretty intimidating.
At first glance, it’d make a lot of sense for the new form to be a Dark-type Pokémon. But because the Alolan Meowth line already did that, it’s very unlikely that this will be repeated unless some stats or another aspect is heavily changed for the Galarian form. There’s already one huge change for the new cat, though—the fact it won’t follow its normal evolution line.
For the first time since Pokémon Red and Blue, Meowth won’t evolve into the boss cat Persian. Instead, a completely new Pokémon has taken its place.
Perrserker is this leaked evolution’s name and it looks like it’d fit perfectly into some nightmares for little children. Its menacing teeth and the fact it loses a lot of fur to show darkened skin and bigger horns makes it look much scarier than the “dark” Persian.
These two new Pokémon are apparently Steel-type, but there’s no consensus on what their secondary typing might be at the moment—if they even have one. Both previous Meowth lines have been mono-type, so mono-Steel makes sense here, too.
None of this information or the leaked images have been confirmed by Nintendo or Game Freak, however. Pokémon Sword and Shield release worldwide for Nintendo Switch on Nov. 15.