Pokemon Gotta Catch-Em-All

I don’t know if anyone was predicting this, but they just announced the Gen 9 Pokémon games: Scarlet and Violet. And it looks like they’re going for more of a true open world than Sword and Shield were. The trailer looks like those games with a lot more polish. And it’s come out late this year. Three Pokémon games in about 12 months (Diamond/Pearl remake, Arceus, and now this) may be too much too fast. But I’m still interested to see what this is.

https://www.gamespot.com/amp-article...

Waiting for a random time distortion spawn to get a random pokemon spawn is the weakest part of arceus. So in pokemon game terms best game yet.

PSA... I did not scroll back up... but today the Criserria or that soft glitch was patched!

Wow is the last fight in Arceus a load of BS.

The controls just don't feel good. maybe it is my switch controller but still doesn't feel precise enough to feel good.

Theme wise I feel like it should be more focused on my end team as they are the diverse team i got by catching them all.

I think my final verdict it "we need a final boss, what is we did x again but bigger and more health".

I'll agree with that. But it's still my favorite Pokemon game so far.

I fought God, beat him, put him in a box and am now using him to attack pigeons in the park.

New trailer dropped for Scarlet and Violet:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ruB...

Main takeaways are we see the box legends, it looks like there is some sort of co-op mode where 4 players can be run around in the world together, and we have an release date of November 18, which is basically exactly what I expected based on Nintendo's known release calendar this year. Sword and Shield also came out on the third Friday of November in 2019.

4 player co-op is a pretty massive announcement. That could be extremely cool if it's well implemented, but I can just as easily see Game Freak making it an absolute nightmare. I'm going to stay skeptical of that until the game releases.

The most exciting takeaway for me was learning that Toby Fox composed the field music for Scarlet and Violet. His track from the Sword/Shield Battle Tower was a banger.

There was another trailer that dropped this morning that covered more details on the three different 'stories' that make up the game. And there seems to be a lot of returning features from Sword and Shield, like the raid battles and the picnic time. Normally they toss a bunch of features from generation to generation, but budget considerations may have changed that equation. And in a lot of ways, it really does just look like a bigger Sword and Shield with more going on.

Main news is that my boy Girafarig finally gets an evolution, though.

But I'm having a harder time getting excited for it Maybe it's because the last few mainline games were a bit disappointing (haven't played Legends yet). Or maybe it's because there are a couple of monster-collector games that are out now that got great reviews (Coromon and Monster Sanctuary, specifically) that I could play that are cheaper and feel like less of a gamble than a new Pokemon game at full price to get itch scratched. Not sure what it is, but I'm probably just going to be waiting for reviews, which is the smart thing to do anyway.*

Spoiler:

*I reserve the right to get hyped again at any time or for any reason

Pokemon is basically gaming comfort food for me. I haven't gotten genuinely excited about any of them in a good while, but I still get that childhood-esque excitement in the pit of my stomach a few days before a new one releases. They are a consistently pleasant experience, and especially in light of the last several years that is a source of comfort not to be underestimated.

I haven't really played the newer games like Sword/Shield. I think the last of the more traditional Pokemon game I played was Black and X, although I didn't finish either of them as far as I recall. I did play Arceus, and while I haven't finished that, I did enjoy the early Pokemon lore setting of it and the gameplay. I'm still not sure how I feel about Red/Violet, and whether or not I'll pick one of them up.

My Pokemon kick is playing with my daughter. I used to help her out when she was playing on her old OG 3DS - may it rest in peace - and have been playing opposite her since I got us both Switches a couple of years back. That means she and I are both all-in on Scarlet/Violet.

It doesn't have to be revolutionary, it just has to be good.

Now, if I had a wish fulfilled, I'd love an RPG/Strategy Hybrid set in the much mentioned but never explored Pokemon War. Take the kiddie gloves off. Never going to happen, though.

There was that one DS release, Pokemon Conquest, that was a promising first foray into a strategy/tactics approach for the franchise. Also, I'll never stop being amused knowing that someone had to have pitched the idea "hey, what if we made a crossover between Nobunaga's Ambition and Pokemon?" and it was taken seriously.

Farscry wrote:

There was that one DS release, Pokemon Conquest, that was a promising first foray into a strategy/tactics approach for the franchise. Also, I'll never stop being amused knowing that someone had to have pitched the idea "hey, what if we made a crossover between Nobunaga's Ambition and Pokemon?" and it was taken seriously. :D

Oh, I remember that one. It just wasn't quite what I meant with an RPG with Strategy leanings with a mature enough story (within the constraints of the franchise) and dealing with that particular period that has never really been explored.

The fact that the crossover exists is a good precedent, but it's been so long and the Pokemon Co. has since moved away from anything as interesting as that.

So in anticipation of Pokemon Scarlet coming out in a few weeks, I decided to finally get around to Pokemon Legends Arceus, which was on a deep enough sale recently that I got around to buying it. I’m maybe like 8 hours in, beat the first Noble Pokemon and am now running around through the swamp region, but also found a high level area back in the first zone that I’ve been trying to catch or level up against. Basically ignoring the main story for now and just exploring. And one thing I like about this game is that the levels don’t matter too much – you can get worked by someone a few levels lower than you, or with the right type matchup and maybe a strong style attack, you can take down an Alpha Pokemon maybe 15 levels higher than you for some extra fast grinding.

And it is grindy, since it seems like experience sort of dribbles out from battles, and if you want to fill in the pokedex for the different Pokemon, there is a lot of catching/sneaking/using specific moves 20 times sort of repetition that goes on. Fortunately I don’t know how much grinding is actually required to complete the story or catch all the unique Pokemon in this game. I think if this was some new IP and not something I’ve been playing for more than two decades I would probably be a lot less tolerant of the game design. But for now, the charm seems to be enough to cover the issues.

Sundown wrote:

So in anticipation of Pokemon Scarlet coming out in a few weeks, I decided to finally get around to Pokemon Legends Arceus, which was on a deep enough sale recently that I got around to buying it. I’m maybe like 8 hours in, beat the first Noble Pokemon and am now running around through the swamp region, but also found a high level area back in the first zone that I’ve been trying to catch or level up against. Basically ignoring the main story for now and just exploring. And one thing I like about this game is that the levels don’t matter too much – you can get worked by someone a few levels lower than you, or with the right type matchup and maybe a strong style attack, you can take down an Alpha Pokemon maybe 15 levels higher than you for some extra fast grinding.

And it is grindy, since it seems like experience sort of dribbles out from battles, and if you want to fill in the pokedex for the different Pokemon, there is a lot of catching/sneaking/using specific moves 20 times sort of repetition that goes on. Fortunately I don’t know how much grinding is actually required to complete the story or catch all the unique Pokemon in this game. I think if this was some new IP and not something I’ve been playing for more than two decades I would probably be a lot less tolerant of the game design. But for now, the charm seems to be enough to cover the issues.

I'm way into the post-game and completing Requests and the Pokedex. Grinding can get a bit tedious after a certain level, but you can use the time disruptions in your favor as the mons there are pretty high level (60+). You can also use the connectivity features so that other users who have biffed hard leave some belongings in your world; if you pick them up and send them back, you can get some nice XP items like Rare Candy.

As for the Pokedex, you've likely already figured it out (I missed it in the tutorial so I had to sort of deduce it), but the tasks for each mon with a red square mark to their left will severely increase research ranking, making that particular grind less grindy.

Personally, I beat the main story with a team of ranging from LV 50 to 70, with most around LV 64. It wasn't particularly difficult, but a couple of fights did have me down to my last pokemon standing.

I very much enjoyed Arceus, and I'm hoping that there's more than a little of Arceus's gameplay DNA in the upcoming Scarlet/Violet release. A blend of Arceus and mainline entries would be a great approach IMO.

Happy launch day.

The reviews are out, and the general consensus seems to be that the open world and the multiple storylines work pretty well together, and serves as a good step forward from Sword and Shield. But the thing everyone also dings is for are the performance issues, which seem to be bad even by Pokemon standards. I've seen (unconfirmed) people on the internet say that the game is loading the whole overworld at once, which is one of the issues it has. Regardless, I still got Scarlet, and it will be arriving in the next few days. Hopefully a patch fixes some of those problems.

In the meantime, I'm still running through Pokemon Legends Arceus. I've played up through the main story and seen the credits roll, and had a good time with it. It may have started kind of grindy, but once I got into the flow of it (new area > catch lots of stuff > knock Pokemon out with certain types of moves > catch an alpha and put it on my team > storyline things > repeat), it was a lot of fun. I also like how fragile everything is, since that builds on the feeling of uncertainty and fragility in this world.

I agree with the sentiment of many others that it was a breath of fresh air for the series, and hopefully they do it again with a bit more polish (like fixing the noble fights). My main goal now is to get all of the Pokemon new to this game or the regional variants and then put them in Home as part of the living Pokedex, and it looks like I need to complete the postgame story to do that, so I'll still be playing it for a bit. I now with I had gotten to this sooner so it wasn't bumping up against the launch of the new generation, but that's a very small problem.

I've got Violet waiting for me at home; I'm currently away visiting my dad in a different province so I'll likely get my start on Sunday evening.

I, too, have been plugging away at Legends Arceus, catching them all and - little by little - completing the research entries for them. Managed to catch both a Cherrim and a Cherubi. Going to try to catch another of each during the coming week. These two are notoriously rare and difficult to spawn in this game, so that should keep me busy.

I’ve put in about 7 hours. There are some very legit complaints to be made about the performance. People are complaining about it very generally from what I’ve seen, so here’s a specific complaint: the camera in cities is bad, particularly about doors. When you go in one, you never know what direction it’ll face when you come back out.

But I just can’t be bothered to care. The fundamental change from linear path to open world is such a breath of fresh air. I’ve been playing Sword a bit in anticipation (never finished it) and this is just such a huge step forward in terms of possibilities.

The possibility for *real* adventure is so much greater than it has ever been with the franchise. Here’s an example.

Very early on, you fight a trainer who has a Gible. Gible eventually turns into a very powerful dragon type. This is like a level 12 fight. When you’re done battling, he tells you to check your Pokédex to find Gible’s habitat if you want one, so I did. I then proceeded to make the long hike. It took me across areas with level 30+ critters, a couple world bosses, varied terrain. This was just never in the scope of the original formula.

For that step forward I can forgive any performance complaints.

I also wanted to call out one part of the discourse as BS. “The Switch can’t handle this game.” It’s even in some review headlines. The Switch is not the issue. The jank is clearly the result of this team having never made something of this scope before. Xenoblade Chronicles 3 is much more demanding and the Switch has no problem with it.

And done with Pokemon Legends Arceus. And by done I mean I finished the postgame story and caught all of the unique new Pokemon in this game (including the regional forms), and transferred them up to Home. I could quickly get through the rest of the pokedex by moving a lot of guys from Home down real quick if I just wanted to check that box, but I'm not feeling the need to for completion's sake. I had a lot of fun with Arceus, more than I thought I would. They found a way to make the grind seem fun.

Scarlet has not come in yet (expected to arrive tomorrow), but I'm debating whether to dive right in or wait for a patch to fix some things first. It helps my decision that I mostly play undocked, and one of my Joy Cons has had some aggressive drift for the last few months. The camera in Arceus was a nightmare to keep locked on the action, for instance, as it kept spinning around me, or would point at the ground whenever I tried moving around. I probably would have liked it even better if I wasn't locked in combat with the console itself. I'm going to try to send it in for repairs, so I'm hoping the patch comes before that Joycon gets back.

I got home in the evening yesterday and, while very tired, decided to fire up Violet.I was able to get through the usual introductory section - this is your character's situation and reason for being there, choose your starters, have a battle - and then promptly saved because drowsiness was getting the best of me.

I intend to play through this with my daughter in mid December, so I might just get working on getting a nice team for the early game, doing some trading here and there, and then leave it simmering until she can join me. Might actually look into getting a Ditto for some breeding and trade to try and get a foreign Ditto.

This is the first time I get into a Pokemon game early enough - since the original Pearl on ye olde DS - to get into the trading while it's hot.

I've spent several hours with it so far (Violet) and am really enjoying it. I just am enjoying exploring. I've only just beaten the first gym, so not done too much to explore the 3 paths.

I messed around with a copy of Scarlet to get all three starters on my team too, because I can never decide.

The Titans are very much worth doing ASAP, IMO.

So, currently trying to trade my Dittos for Dittos from a different region, so if anyone here has their game in a region other than an English (ENG) speaking one, and would be willing to trade one (or four), PM me and I'd be happy to trade.

EDIT: To be clear, I am aware of the standard trading code for Ditto trading (4448-4448), but so far, after three days trying my luck for an hour at a time, I keep getting trades for ENG region Ditto, hence me trying my luck over here.