Pokemon

7 Dec

I bought Pokemon Y when it got released and I loved it. I have enjoyed playing the main-series Pokemon games since I was given Pokemon Blue for Christmas in 1999. The side ‘distraction’ games were fine, but it was Pokemon Main Series that I stuck to.

The Pokemon Colosseum and XD games were fun. But were crippled by the console format. It’s tough having to share a TV with the family. It was a game that was difficult to pick up and put down.

Pinball was pinball.

And Conquest was… interesting. Fun gameplay, but at the end of the campaign, everything reset. The only thing that changed were Pokemon who evolved. It meant within a campaign you wanted to evolve an amount of Pokemon to feel like you hadn’t wasted your time. What made Pokemon Main Game series good was that anything you did felt productive. Even getting 1 exp.

Mystery Dungeon was fun, but I can’t remember it. I also recall being annoyed that I couldn’t evolve any of my team in till finishing the main story.

But lets talk about the main series of games.

Pokemon Y (and X) have been the first Pokemon game I have really-really enjoyed since Emerald/Ruby/Sapphire. Why? Aesthetics and general good gameplay. Diamond/Pearl/Platinum had a weird aesthetic. Sprites on a 2.5D world. It looked weird. It looked fuzzy. You went from the crisp Emerald to the murky Diamond. B/W/B2/W2 didn’t improve it much. It felt like they used the same engine, but they tried to cram in more detail that looked fuzzy. ERS pushed 2D sprites as far as it could go, and it looked vibrant and pretty. At the end of the day, Pokemon to me is a fantasy I yearn for, so anything that reminds me that it’s just a game ruins my enjoyment. The reminder is moving about in the DPPlBWB2W2 world and seeing the 2.5D view shift.

In Pokemon XY, they have gone through the darkness of 2.5D and emerged in the world of crisper 3D. It’s not perfect. The characters’ heads are stuck onto their bodies by a cylinder, but I don’t spend all the time staring at their necks.

What I also love about Pokemon YX is how assessable battling is with other trainers. Before you relied on a link cable (and people wanting to interact with you) and living in a city/town. And then, you relied on poaching player trainer numbers. Now you can queue up for a battle with [b]anyone[/b] who also queued up (like with a lot of matchmaking in other multiplayer competitive games). Because I am now older, I find the contained Pokemon game as lonely experience. I want to share it with others. Therefore I enjoy battling others because I get to bring the pain. As a result I have taken an interest in ‘Competitive Battling’.

I don’t aim to compete in any tournaments, but I like to do my hobbies to the best of my ability. I enjoy knowing fully what I am doing. If I just battled randomers with 6 Pokemon built however I wanted (without any knowledge of competitive battling), I would probably lose and not know why. I would get angry at “cheap” Pokemon tactics or get angry at people “who take it seriously”. The best way to avoid those problems is to take it more seriously myself.

Armed with the not entirely reliable knowledge from http://www.smogon.com and the very reliable (if sometimes very optimistic) Verlisify (http://www.youtube.com/user/Verlisify/videos) I have been training some Pokemon or half-teams that function efficiently. I think optimism with regard to Pokemon’s competitive power is good. It encourages a more diverse Pokemon use amongst all players. It would be boring if everyone used the “Uber” tier Pokemon. It’s encouraging that the vast majority of final-evolution Pokemon have potential power (be it a sweeper who needs support, or a good support Pokemon in doubles).

I’ve been using their information to train great Pokemon which I can use in the future, but also to understand the thinking and theory behind Competitive Strategies. After two months of reading and listening, I have composed a team of 6 Pokemon (I sincerely like the aesthetics of) that I believe will be viable. I plan to post the team in a future post, and then do a blogpost whenever I tweak it/any interesting developments. I’m doing it for myself (as a reference of the evolution of this team), but also to share it if the team ends up working very well. I do have some doubts with my initial draft, but I need to construct the team first before I know if my worries are justified or not. I am currently trying a Wonder Trade Playthrough of Pokemon X, but I will start to build the team after a X break (I don’t need to finish X in till Pokebank).

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