Pokemon Sun and Moon Catch-em-All

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It has been announced that there is a new Pokemon game coming out. Sun and Moon is the title. There has been a lot of rumors about these games. As a Pokemon fanboy, I am excited no matter what happens. It has been leaked the region is based on Hawaii.

Does anyone have any opinion on what should be the direction of the series? Does anyone have rumors?

Hawaii, eh? Hadn't heard that.

Me, I'm hoping it has a house feature like Omega Ruby. I love that stuff.

Are the Pokemon games actually making the combat system more interesting for adults, as the generations go on, or are they still pachinko machines?

harbichidian wrote:

Are the Pokemon games actually making the combat system more interesting for adults

The closest to being "more interesting for adults" is the semi-ethical ponderings brought up in Black and White, which ultimately were still Saturday Morning Cartoon levels of depth. The combat is largely the same, with depth largely being added with more behind-the-scenes complexity for raising better and stronger Pokemon, breeding them, and the eternal pain-in-the-ass that is hybrid types confusing the Hell out of me in terms of who will be weak to what.

Otherwise, these are still games designed with children in mind, and the adults that take it seriously are basically the sort that play very competitively, spending a lot of time raising Pokemon. Kind of like how you spend more time training than you do in a boxing match.

ccesarano wrote:

The combat is largely the same, with depth largely being added with more behind-the-scenes complexity for raising better and stronger Pokemon, breeding them, and the eternal pain-in-the-ass that is hybrid types confusing the Hell out of me in terms of who will be weak to what.

Far be it for me to question the efficacy of a multi-million dollar media corporation, but man that's disappointing. You could really have something interesting if you put it into the trappings of a "MOBA Hero Manager 2016" kind of thing.

harbichidian wrote:
ccesarano wrote:

The combat is largely the same, with depth largely being added with more behind-the-scenes complexity for raising better and stronger Pokemon, breeding them, and the eternal pain-in-the-ass that is hybrid types confusing the Hell out of me in terms of who will be weak to what.

Far be it for me to question the efficacy of a multi-million dollar media corporation, but man that's disappointing. You could really have something interesting if you put it into the trappings of a "MOBA Hero Manager 2016" kind of thing.

That sorta seems like what they might be doing with one of their mobile titles, if only in a small way:

Though it may end up being as shallow as Pokemon Rumble.

The mainline Pokemon series is very much still running combat on a design doc from the mid-90's. I'm hoping Yokai Watch's huge success in Japan pushes them to find a way to keep the depth of the combat, but make it more interesting and exciting. Quicker, especially.

harbichidian wrote:

Far be it for me to question the efficacy of a multi-million dollar media corporation, but man that's disappointing. You could really have something interesting if you put it into the trappings of a "MOBA Hero Manager 2016" kind of thing.

Ugh. Please, God, no. I don't want them chasing trends, especially the MOBA trend, just to try and be the old man in the room wearing a sideways baseball cap and a flannel shirt tied around his waist telling everyone he's "still hip".

I think the series' attempts to update have been in terms of number of enemies. There are two vs. two matches, and fights where you'll encounter a horde of one Pokemon rather than just a single one, but otherwise they still try to keep it turn-based. If they were going to vary it up, I'd rather it take an approach like Bravely Default, where it puts more of a spin on those traditional elements that add a new layer. At the same time, Bravely Default is intended for a more nostalgic audience that have long since cut their teeth on the genre, whereas Pokemon is still trying to be accessible.

What I think might be better is for the game to open up a bit. Stop relying so much on progressing through the gyms in a set order with Not-Team-Rocket trying to disrupt you every step of the way. Which is not to say get rid of the gyms, but I'm thinking to kick it up a notch like A Link Between Worlds did by allowing dungeons be done in any order and giving the player ready access to all the tools early on. As for speed in combat, I think there's two things for that. The first is to eliminate the text-box and just convey data visually. Drop the numbers on the battlefield like, oh, just about any RPG since Final Fantasy, change their color to indicate super-effective or not-very-effective, and simply show me that someone is asleep and paralyzed rather than also narrating it. The second is to do like Fire Emblem Fates and Bravely Default and allow animations to be sped up (if you get rid of the text box then you kind of need animations since that's how certain info would be presented).

I think those changes could go a long way.

This is going to sound crazy, but hear me out.

What if they did away with experience levels?

Think about it; the competitive elements of the end-game have long centered around normalizing the levels of the contestants (to either level 50 or level 100). The real difference comes in the form of team composition, chosen moves, and IV's/EV's.

So how about changing things up drastically: no experience levels. Instead, the experience points you earn as you adventure are a stockpile of points that you spend to purchase moves -- and you can purchase moves in whatever order you want so long as you have the points. This also allows you to "re-buy" moves that you've forgotten if you decide you want to re-acquire that move.

The value of TM's is that you can teach a pokemon a move without needing to spend experience points.

IV's and EV's could still exist, and in fact would be more understandable for new and/or younger players; since pokemon would have no level, it would be immediately apparent upon capturing how their IV's stack up against another of its kind. And EV's were already made more transparent in X/Y through the training mini-games and EV "tracker" view.

This would fit perfectly into Cces's idea of a "Link Between Worlds" structure; if pokemon have no level, the only things that limit your ability to explore and conquer various gyms are the mechanics of exploration (moves like Strength, Surf, etc) and whether you have built up members of your roster who can handle the gym (so make sure you have types/moves that can deal with Rock-types before you head to the Rock Gym).

I think this would be a pretty awesome change to the game formula, and open up more design possibilities for the dev team since they wouldn't need to build around the traditional level grind.

Those are some good ideas, but attempting to balance it under (as assumed) 800+ Pokemon sounds like a nightmare to me.

Until the games stop selling like hotcakes I expect we'll be stuck with the same formula, more or less.

As mentioned, one area that could easily change is story. I don't understand why they're content telling the same story over and over again. Well, the story structure is the same over and over again. Hell, the map looks the same just with more colors.

I'm not fond of turning experience points into a currency to purchase stat increases and new skills, but eliminating experience levels and perhaps doubling down on the training aspect could be fascinating. All that stuff that is largely hidden and invisible? Bring it to the fore, but also build additional ways that they can increase and change.

However, that might be a bit too radical a departure, especially when we're talking over 700 Pokemon (Sun/Moon will bring it to 800, I imagine?). I like Pokemon, but I never really felt like I was training them. Perhaps some inspiration from the now defunct Monster Rancher? Just... not a collection of tiny mini-games and such. That would be even worse, I think.

At the same time, could you make an interesting system if you're still trying to be accessible to kids playing an RPG for the first time?

ccesarano wrote:

I'm not fond of turning experience points into a currency to purchase stat increases and new skills, but eliminating experience levels and perhaps doubling down on the training aspect could be fascinating.

Locking moves and stats behind experience levels means that we're already using experience points as currency for exactly that purpose. It's just not as "obvious" that it functions that way.

The reason I proposed the change I did was so that it would keep the general feel of "leveling up" somewhat intact, but what you would be doing is rather than earning experience to make your pokemon specifically more powerful, you're earning experience to broaden their option.

In other words, you would earn and spend experience points to level "sideways" instead of up.

A side benefit is that it would also mean that any new pokemon you catch is at least marginally useful right out of the gate and the point costs could be set such that training them to be more capable would be a little less tedious and time-consuming. This would make it feasible to have your active roster balanced between pokemon with diverse movesets you have earned and setup, and pokemon that are new to your team so they have simple movesets and base stats (since they haven't earned EV's through training yet either) but whom are still competent enough for basic adventuring.

Gyms, major story encounters, etc would be the times you would want to bring out your most heavily trained or tuned team to tackle the opposition.

The more I think about it, the more I like the idea, and it would be approachable to implement in a new generation. Hidden in the guts of the code, you could retain the level statistic and it's just automatically set to 50. This way importing pokemon from previous generations would work just fine: as they're processed on trading in, their level would simply be set to 50 automatically. The stats screen just wouldn't show a "level" statistic.

Hrm. I think there would be a couple of issues still. Currently Pokemon obedience is determined by the Pokemon's level compared to the highest badge acquired. This is largely a control, I think, to keep weak players from just cheesing their way through the game with high level Pokemon (for me, it really halted my grinding efforts in the original Red/Blue). The level requirements are ultimately absurd, but I think it's something they'd need to reconfigure in our imaginary opened world of Pokemon without levels.

I'm still trying to think how you'd tie all this together, and how you'd keep players new and old alike happy. I think changes to hasten the combat would be welcomed with open arms. I think opening the game up would be as well. Eliminating levels? Well, now you start potentially alienating players.

Considering it, perhaps one of the first things to change is the trainer themselves? I mean, right now you as a trainer are pretty generic. What if you had a "class" that could provide different boosts to your Pokemon during battle? Or what if you can get specific, like "Bug Catcher" or "Mountain Climber" to get bonuses to your Insect or Rock pokemon, respectively?

Granted, you usually don't want to be so specialized in a Pokemon game, but what if the story switched from being The Very Best, That No One Ever Was, and instead heavily focused on building your very own gym? I'm thinking something like the Castle in Fire Emblem Fates and Norende in Bravely Default. As you progress through the game and defeat other gyms, you find people that want to join yours. You are able to afford bigger, more elaborate gym space. Customize it into a maze. Hand some of your Pokemon to those trainers, and as your 3DS sleeps, it slowly builds those Pokemon's stats/levels/IV/EV/Whatevers. Whatever Pokemon they are carrying can be battled by people on your friends list similarly to how visiting and fighting another's Castle works in Fire Emblem Fates.

God dammit, the more I think about it the more I want it to be a thing and the more angry I get at myself for knowing it's not likely to happen.

This is your fault Farscry.

ccesarano wrote:

Hrm. I think there would be a couple of issues still. Currently Pokemon obedience is determined by the Pokemon's level compared to the highest badge acquired. This is largely a control, I think, to keep weak players from just cheesing their way through the game with high level Pokemon (for me, it really halted my grinding efforts in the original Red/Blue). The level requirements are ultimately absurd, but I think it's something they'd need to reconfigure in our imaginary opened world of Pokemon without levels.

I don't recall about the older games, but in the more recent generations that control limit only applies to pokemon that are traded to you. Anything you capture directly yourself is exempt from that limitation.

ccesarano wrote:

Considering it, perhaps one of the first things to change is the trainer themselves? I mean, right now you as a trainer are pretty generic. What if you had a "class" that could provide different boosts to your Pokemon during battle? Or what if you can get specific, like "Bug Catcher" or "Mountain Climber" to get bonuses to your Insect or Rock pokemon, respectively?

Granted, you usually don't want to be so specialized in a Pokemon game, but what if the story switched from being The Very Best, That No One Ever Was, and instead heavily focused on building your very own gym? I'm thinking something like the Castle in Fire Emblem Fates and Norende in Bravely Default. As you progress through the game and defeat other gyms, you find people that want to join yours. You are able to afford bigger, more elaborate gym space. Customize it into a maze. Hand some of your Pokemon to those trainers, and as your 3DS sleeps, it slowly builds those Pokemon's stats/levels/IV/EV/Whatevers. Whatever Pokemon they are carrying can be battled by people on your friends list similarly to how visiting and fighting another's Castle works in Fire Emblem Fates.

ooooooh, I really like these ideas, especially making the story/quest about building and recruiting for your own gym rather than the traditional storyline! Even better would be if the social aspect of the game allowed you to visit and challenge gyms of other players!

Pokémon: Animal Crossing style.

ccesarano wrote:

This is your fault Farscry.

If I helps, now I'm frustrated too. Makes me want to make my own pokemon game, but I am lacking in both the ambition and talent necessary to do so.

Farscry wrote:

I don't recall about the older games, but in the more recent generations that control limit only applies to pokemon that are traded to you. Anything you capture directly yourself is exempt from that limitation.

Largely what I meant but didn't specify. Basically keeps someone from trading you a Level 60 Victreebell while you're still level 5 in Pallet Town and just tearing through the game.

If I helps, now I'm frustrated too. Makes me want to make my own pokemon game, but I am lacking in both the ambition and talent necessary to do so. ;)

And, y'know, the legal rights and access to do so.

Every so often I open Game Maker back up, start the tutorial, and just give up because, as much as I'd love to make a game, I cannot give up writing about games or making my YouTube videos. There's no way I could do those and make a game at the same time. I'd rather give up my full-time job, but I kind of like being able to live and eat in Not-My-Parent's-House, so...

Farscry wrote:

I don't recall about the older games, but in the more recent generations that control limit only applies to pokemon that are traded to you. Anything you capture directly yourself is exempt from that limitation.

That's always been true, since Red and Blue.

One thread I am very interested in seeing continued is Pokemon Conquest, in which the battle system is grid based and requires you to think about positioning and combining effects.

That's more along the lines of what I actually meant by "MOBA Hero Manager". I want Pokemon to be treated more like the variety of heroes in a MOBA, where each of them are a unique implementation of a particular mold. As is, there is very little you can personally affect in the game. Player skill is virtually meaningless.

Heck, the Pokemon TCG is more skill-based than the mainline video games.

Out Nov. 18th. (Nov. 23rd in Europe.)

Is that seriously everything they're showing/telling us today? That's nice for a teaser, but some details of more substance would be nice.

Is there going to be much of a post-game (think Platinum, for example)?
Will we be able to transfer from Gen VI via the PokeBank?
Can we see a map of the Alola region?
Do we actually have grid-free movement all the time as the trailer implies (which would be a big change for the series)?

Those are my biggest questions.

Don't worry. By the end of the summer we'll know the three stages of evolution for the starters, which is what I really care about.

I need to know what sort of bad ass my Pokemon will look like towards end-game.

Farscry wrote:

Do we actually have grid-free movement all the time as the trailer implies (which would be a big change for the series)?

The 3DS games had grid free movement if you used the stick instead of the d-pad. Wasn't great, I didn't use it that much.

There were limitations to that though. That's why I specified "all the time".

Personally, I'm weird and actually like the grid-based movement, but I'm sure I'll adapt if they're moving the series to a grid-free movement model on the whole.

That owl is so cute. More information pleaaase.

Farscry wrote:

Is there going to be much of a post-game (think Platinum, for example)?

Probably the same as in X/Y, but that's a guess.

Farscry wrote:

Will we be able to transfer from Gen VI via the PokeBank?

Yes, confirmed on the website - also will be able to transfer Pokemon from the Virtual Console versions of Red, Blue and Yellow.

Farscry wrote:

Can we see a map of the Alola region?

Not yet, but it looks like it is based on tropical islands, Hawaii in particular.

Farscry wrote:

Do we actually have grid-free movement all the time as the trailer implies (which would be a big change for the series)?

I'd be shocked it if was much more than what we had in X/Y, it looks like the same engine.

Looks cool. I can guarantee my daughter will pick the Litten and I'm pretty sure my son will pick the Rowlet. The only problem is do I buy 3 copies so we can all play, or do I take a step back now and just let them play and watch on?

BlackSabre wrote:

Looks cool. I can guarantee my daughter will pick the Litten and I'm pretty sure my son will pick the Rowlet. The only problem is do I buy 3 copies so we can all play, or do I take a step back now and just let them play and watch on?

You get a copy, and act as a gym leader for them. "You did the dishes, but you can't play unless you can beat your Dad!" - eyes lock, exclamation point, battle!

Best excuse to buy a copy that I ever heard!

Evidently there's going to be a method to keep boosting your Pokemon's stats once you've hit the level-cap of 100. I don't recall the loose details from Eurogamer, but it sounds like you find and then trade bottlecaps with a dude named Mr. Hyper and can use his Hyper Training to max stats out.

I don't know if I've even managed to hit level cap in any of the games. I've never been able to really enjoy the end-game of Pokemon because I've moved on to something else shortly after. However, it sounds like it could be useful to more competitive players to reduce the needs of breeding Pokemon for superior stats (though I imagine it won't stop them due to natures and other such things).

Bottlecaps, what is this fallout?

ccesarano wrote:

Evidently there's going to be a method to keep boosting your Pokemon's stats once you've hit the level-cap of 100. I don't recall the loose details from Eurogamer, but it sounds like you find and then trade bottlecaps with a dude named Mr. Hyper and can use his Hyper Training to max stats out.

This sounds a lot like some of the "break the level cap" mechanics I've seen in phone RPGs lately.

b12n11w00t wrote:

Bottlecaps, what is this fallout?

IMAGE(http://i1.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/original/000/241/796/cac.png)

As Pokemon is the only game I played on my 3ds, I'm looking forward to the new on. However, after seeing the new graphics of GO, I really want Nintendo to release something better than the 3ds that gives a graphical improvement.

BlackSabre wrote:
b12n11w00t wrote:

Bottlecaps, what is this fallout?

IMAGE(http://i1.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/original/000/241/796/cac.png)

As Pokemon is the only game I played on my 3ds, I'm looking forward to the new on. However, after seeing the new graphics of GO, I really want Nintendo to release something better than the 3ds that gives a graphical improvement.

We don't have many details at this point but they've already confirmed their next system will be available by the end of March 2017. Ideally they'll do a reveal of the system within a month or two.

Speaking of Go... How long until they announce Bank support for it?

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