YvoCaro Plays

YvoCaro Plays: Pokémon But Not As You Know It

Welcome to another YvoCaro Plays!

As always, these blurbs are mostly about the video games I’m currently playing. Unedited thoughts that spring up in my mind, mostly game related, sometimes not. Or a random train of thoughts starting with the game and ending somewhere completely different! This time I want to talk to you about Pokémon Legends: Arceus.

If you like these bits of gaming thoughts you can find the previous ones here

Can I Sneak Past this Trainer

A couple of months ago I already told you all about how I came into playing Pokémon: a real revelation for the boys in my 10-year old daughter’s class when a 45-year old mum knows all about dragon types. Pokémon Platinum was my first game of the series, and it stuck with me. So much so that I bought every game since they were released. Not that I finished them all, there are only a few that I played right to the end. Because eventually boredom would set in. Maybe because it’s always the same formula: the storyline about a bunch of bad people threatening the world that have to be stopped.

Stopped by a trainer that has my name!

Starting out with weak Pokémon that you need to level up. The same formula of what type goes best against which type. Battling Pokémon along the way so you eventually get stronger. Which is important as you have to beat the gym leaders you meet. And though I love turn based games, always seeing the same text with the moves you unleash does get old. As do the trainers along your route….did you never think to yourself: “is there a way to sneak past him so I don’t have to battle”?

Shaking Up the Formula of Pokémon Games

Essentially, Pokémon games never changed their structure or plot. Sure, new elements were added and I especially like the interaction through wifi with other players. But basically, the essence of the game is still the same and a lot of gamers love it that way. Is it because it’s comforting to go back to something you loved during your childhood? There’s enough misery in the big cold world out there for people to want to retreat to a game that feels like spending time with an old friend. And it’s been very successful for GameFreak and Nintendo. Still, apparently they decided it was time for a change. A huge change, much like Breath of the Wild shook up the formula of the Legend of Zelda games. They released Pokémon Legends: Arceus at the end of January.

The wide world at my feet

Like Breath of the Wild divided Zelda fans, I’m pretty sure Pokémon Legends: Arceus will divide Pokémon fans. I guess it’s all a matter of what kind of play style you like. I’m glad though that the overall consensus from the gaming press is positive. Just like ours is, Paula reviewed it at Two Thumbs Up, and I wholeheartedly agree!

Why Do I Love Pokémon Legends

I have been playing it since release, and while I’m nowhere near as far as Paula is in her travels all across the Hisui Region, I’m sure loving it. Why? Well, the story is a different one. You don’t travel the lands to become the best trainer possible. No, most people living in Hisui are afraid of Pokémon and don’t see them as possible partners.

A Space Distortion happens nearby

Just wildlife to get away from as quickly as possible. Your task isn’t as much catching them, but to study Pokémon. To do this you observe them and sure, you do battle and catch them. But in a different way. Sometimes you can catch them unawares and getting them in your self made Pokéball is easy. Sometimes they engage you in battle and you have to weedle their HP down with the familiar types and moves. But what’s changed is that some can hurt you yourself too. Feels more equal, you don’t just rope the Pokémon in to battle for you, but you have to be weary of your own health too.

The way of the boss battles, when you battle the Nobles, is very, very different. Has me hesitant even, as there’s an action element in there that I usually don’t excel in. But all of that makes it more exiting too. Making your own balls, potions and other things is fun, doing the quests for the people in Jubilife is great too. Gives you an extra challenge.

I’m not entirely sure if I like the research, because it can mean you have to catch 6 or more Starleys etc, seems like such a waste. As they are obviously enjoying themselves being out in the world, sometimes I feel a bit of guilt to catch them.

Looking out over the marshes of Hisui

The biggest draw of Pokémon Legends: Arceus is the open world concept! Maybe not entirely open world, as like in Breath of the Wild it has areas you can unlock during your storyline, but still. Standing on the edge of a hill, looking out over the vast lands admiring the sunset, it sure feels like open world.

Great Marketing

I’m gonna leave you with a clip from the Official Pokémon YouTube channel that I felt was very good. Made me smile, so I’m happy to share!

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