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They literally already have the models. All they have to do is enable them for use in the game. It's not a storage issue. It's not even a workload issue. If they were actually updating the models and battle animations every gen then this decision would be somewhat understandable, but that's not what we're seeing. (and even then, since they aren't found in the game, it wouldn't be a big deal if those extra Pokemon used "last gen's" models when you bring them in, some old games did that with sprites) These are the same models they've been using since X&Y, with the same canned animations. As it stands it comes across as just another excuse for Game Freak to further descend into their comfortable laziness. This may not be the "biggest deal ever" in the sense that you don't "have to" play with Pokemon not found in the region or maintain a living dex, but it's the straw that broke the camel's back for most people it seems, after multiple gens of increased laziness from Game Freak. They need to treat the world's biggest media franchise with more care than they have been. Whether that's directly GF's fault for refusing to expand their operation adequately, or the fault of the Pokemon Company/etc for deadlines they impose on GF to align with other media arms (TCG, anime, etc), something's got to change.
Every Pokemon is somebody's favourite. I believe that wisdom comes from Game Freak themselves.