That dumb joke aside, you probably heard of the new Pokémon games coming out for the Switch. Let's Go, Pikachu and Let's Go, Eevee is a creative take on Pokémon Yellow and launches this fall. If you haven't seen it yet, I recommend you check out the trailer:
I totally understand if you need tissues -- I was crying too. Ever since promotion for the 20th anniversary, Pokémon's been on their A-game with trailers! It's all about adding that human element, you know? Anyways, how do I feel about Let's Go? It's a mixed bag.
Let's start off with the good! I've been playing Pokémon Go since it first came out and consistently do so. It's a great way to spend time while commuting to and from work, and there are a few people I know who still play. My collection of creatures has gotten pretty big since, so I'm excited transfer them over to Let's Go. Apparently, you can't send them back to Go, but that doesn't bother me.
The new artstyle for Kanto is also adorable! It might be the big eyes of the trainers or the more brighter tones, but gosh darn it, it works! Almost reminds me of a Kirby game with how happy-go-lucky the setting is.
And, probably my favorite feature, following Pokémon returns! I loved this feature in Yellow, HeartGold, and SoulSilver, so it's great that it's back -- makes you feel more connected with your partner. Plus, the fact you can dress up your partner Pikachu or Eevee. I'm going to burn all my in-game money on that.
|Darn it, I want this outfit!|
While I wish I only had good things to say, there are a few gripes I have. No, I'm not a vengeful Gengar using Grudge, but some features just don't click with me. For instance, battling is only reserved for trainer battles. The Pokémon Go gameplay of catching Pokémon is fine, but it's not as engaging as traditional battles. I understand the reasoning behind it (to appeal to more casual players), but I feel this was a step back from previously established mechanics that are easy enough to grasp.
Furthermore, mechanics for training are said to be kept more simple. This is disappointing, since variety in Pokémon battles comes from not only movepool diversity, but also how you train a Pokémon. An Arcanine could be physically bulky, mixed attacking, physically attacking, specially attacking, doubles support, the list goes on. Its stats could be further customized by EVs, giving more depth in how you train your Arcanine. A simplified training system would mean that Arcanine's versatility drops -- if there's no way to specifically train in Defense, it'll be harder to be physically bulky. We don't have full details yet, but elimination of generation mainstays like Abilities also takes away a Pokémon's uniqueness in battle style.
Probably the biggest offender for me is that Let's Go will only be limited to Generation 1 Pokémon. I wrote about this back in 2012, but Pokémon's strength is their huge catalogue of creatures they've made throughout the years. Limiting us to the original 151 takes away fan favorites from later games. What's more, apparently you can't transfer newer Pokémon to Let's Go! Hopefully, they're taking a page from FireRed and not letting you use newer Pokémon until after you defeat the Elite Four. But if that's not the case, it's a move that takes away from the inclusiveness and spirit of Pokémon games.
So yeah, a lot of thoughts with the new games. We still haven't scratched the surface with 2 player co-op, the Pokéball accessory, and the new Pokémon you can transfer to Go. Sure, there are some things holding me back from being all in with these titles, but I'm optimistic it'll all work out for the best. For now, let's go!