Pokémon Sun: First Impressions & Thoughts

Alright, so, I’ve been playing this bad boy for a little over a week, and I’m still not done with it (between my dwindling reading goal, the holidays, and work, I haven’t had a huge abundance of time to play–especially since I’m trying to play during the day so I can get the evos I want), but I’ve definitely managed to form a few opinions regarding it.

This won’t be a long blurb, because I don’t want to throw myself into a rant. Is that better? I don’t know. I’m doing it anyway.

Gameplay (thus far): 8/10

They haven’t really done anything revolutionary with the way you play the game–though I highly, highly appreciate the fact they’re continuing on with the way the screen moves as the trainer does, like they had begun with X and Y, and then continued with ORAS. They’ve kept pretty similar aspects to catching, battling, and the like, which I’m very happy about, because that’s the basics of Pokémon. You throw in these bits where you take care of your Pokémon and use enhanced moves and such, but at the base, there’s still your catching and your battling and your evolving–and I would prefer those never be rendered impossible to recognize.

I will say I’m not thrilled with the whole “call an ally/call for help” thing that they can do. It’s nice for grinding, but when they won’t stop doing it or it never fails, it gets REALLY frustrating. (I’m looking at you, Wishiwashi.)

I also preferred the old method of bonding with your Pokémon. This new one just isn’t much fun. I like the bean collecting, though!

Storyline (thus far): 6/10

Gladion is my son and none of you can convince me otherwise, consider him ADOPTED. I actually really love Team Skull. Their animations, their dialogue, the absolutely ridiculous way they just accept getting beaten 24/7 and are just like, “Darn. Okay.” about it.

I really like them. I also love Alola, though I don’t prefer this whole island trial stuff to actual gyms. They’re kind of cool, but I feel a little less structured since I have no idea what’s going on half of the time as I’m being led along the island and babbled to about stuff I already know, as I’ve spent the past 18 or so years going after gyms. It’s a nice change–but PLEASE don’t let it stay. DO, however, apply this to the remake that will one day come, because that would be a great storyline to continue on.

Also … maybe don’t make it anymore kid-friendly than it already is. Actually, take it back a few notches, because–yes, I know it’s a kid’s game–I felt like my hand was being held the entire time, up until I was about to get ready for the third island. That’s a little ridiculous! They certainly didn’t use such constrictive kiddie gloves in the older games, and I got along just fine!

Whoops, I feel a rant coming on. Moving along.

Graphics: 10/10 do not change

Beautiful! I love, love, love the animations, the attacks, the smooth transitions. Change nothing, unless it’s to make it better.

Overall: like a solid 8/10

It’s not X and Y, which remain my favorite Pokémon games to date (with Gen 3 following close behind), but it hit some pretty good nails for me. There are things I would prefer and things I would not change, and I didn’t expect it to be perfect.

It’s Pokémon, and it’s fun, and that’s what really matters.


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