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caramelzappa's blog

3:33 AM on 04.11.2011

What's wrong with Pokemon Games

The intros
Most of us have grown up with pokemon. Weíve played all five generations and the remakes in between. The tutorials and explanations about what a pokemon is, how to catch one, etc are all great for newcomers to the series but for fucks sake let us skip it.

The HMís
Why do I have to tell the game 5 times that I want to cut down a tree? Or surf? If I have a pokemon that knows surf and I walk into the water, it should just surf automatically. I donít need to press A 5 times to do something that would have no negative consequence. B/W sidestepped this problem by making the HMís not required for the main game, while at the same time ruining what made HMís great. If you donít go after all the extra areas in B/W, the entire game is just walking from place to place. No surfing to islands, no diving into underwater areas, no moving around boulder puzzles. What confuses me the most is that the strength HM kind of had this figured out. Once you used it once in a cave you could just walk up to any boulder and push it. So why donít the other HMís just automatically activate when I enter a dark cave, walk into water, walk towards a tree, etc?

Trading and Battling
I donít even know how to start with this one. The online system in B/W is so confusing and complicated. What happened to good, simple design? Just have a menu option that says multiplayer or online, and have simple menus from there for trading, battling, etc. The current system is such an overly complicated clusterfuck considering itís only really meant to do two simple tasks.

Event Pokemon
These were sort of okay up through third generation. Every generation there would be one pokemon that you couldnít catch in game. Whatever, it just wouldnít count under the catch them all mentality. But now? There are five event only pokemon in D/P/PT, and six in B/W. Some of them havenít even received an event in the US, and are impossible to get. When you have over 1/15 of the new pokemon impossible to catch, whatís the incentive to try to catch them all? You canít. On top of that, when they are released via event, itís usually a japan only event for a very limited amount of time rather than just releasing it via wifi. After all that, if you arenít constantly updated with pokemon news, itís really easy for one of these events to slip by and you never being able to get that pokemon again. Not cool.

The Box System
Why do the withdraw, deposit, and change box buttons still exist? The move function combines and improves all of them. As is they just get in the way. With so many pokemon now, an ability to automatically organize pokemon, as well as search for them is not just a good idea, but a necessity. Manually organizing or searching through 600+ tiny icons doesnít fit into my description of fun.

Transferring progress.
At the end of black and white you can transfer your pokemon from the GenIV games. Cool. But only a few at a time? Without items? Pokemon is a series that people put hundred of hours into. Completing a new version would be a lot more satisfying if you could easily transfer not just all of your pokemon, but your pokedex data, items, and money. Hell, when you start a new game you should be able to import trainer data from an old one. Continuing the adventure you put hours and hours into is a lot more appealing than starting from scratch, even if you have to unlock the ability to use your old pokemon.

L=A and other UI improvements.
In GenIII, you could map the left bumper on the GBA to work as the A button. This way, you could play through a lot of the game with one hand. Pokemon is not a game that demands all your attention, and a lot of us play while doing other things. But now this option is gone. The start, select, right bumper, and left bumper are all completely unused. L=A should still be an option, and start, select and right bumper should all be REGISTER keys. Why should I have to dig through the menu to find my town map? You can register multiple items to the Y button and choose from a menu everytime you press it, but dedicated buttons for 4 items would be a lot more useful. The menu buttons should always be on the touchscreen. They were in HG/SS, and it made using the menu much quicker. Why does C-Gear take up the entire bottom screen when you most likely use it close to never, while you have to press a button to use the menu youíre going to use constantly?

I love Pokemon but problems like these are why I feel like the games havenít evolved since Ruby and Sapphire. Iím playing through Black version, and while I like it and itís still a good game, simple improvements like these could make it into a great game. Thoughts?   read

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