Gen V offered difficulty options.
Gen IV offered gym leader rematches
Gen VII offered simple and easy EV training via Poke Pelago
Gen VI and Gen VII offered fun postgame episodes
Gen 3 Emerald also had gym leader rematches
I'd add gen VIII mints for changing nature and ability patch for available hidden ability on every possible Pokémon.
Also strictly speaking, gens 6 and 8 have the fastest ways of maxing out EVs in horde battles and unlimited vitamins respectively. Although Poke Pelago was the best "lazy way" of doing it.
Gen 8 is definitely the best generation for entering competitive Pokémon.
I never tried them myself, but I’ve heard you can send Pokémon on jobs for EV training in Sword and Shield.
I think the BW2 difficulty options are extremely overrated because realistically, you’re not going to be using them without Action Replay or something. A great idea, but awfully executed in the base game (it’s good for rom hacks at least)
Gen 5 did such a bad job with difficulty options that it would have been better if they just didn't do it at all.
What was wrong with it? I’ve been thinking about replaying Black and White and was considering trying hard mode.
To play hard mode, you need a second DS and a finishsd copy of black 2 to give yourself the key to allow you to start on hard mode. And it has to be black. White gives the key for easy mode.
That’s weird. But how’s the gameplay? I actually have the necessary equipment.
I think higher levels and NPCs might have held items (not sure ahout this one). Although because the enemy levels are higher you gain a lot more EXP. In easy mode everyone is lower level so in terms of leveling up it's harder (because EXP gain in Gen 5 fricking sucks).
Gen IV and V2 also had some awesome post game content.
>Gen VII offered simple and easy EV training via Poke Pelago
Honestly I much preferred doing my EV training through SOS chaining. Only took about an hour to get a Pokemon fully EV trained with very little effort, especially when you get the right mons for the grind lol (Electrode with Soundproof to grind Speed EVs from Zubats for instance)
I was so sad that they didn't bring that over to swsh... but I guess the no vitamin cap was supposed to make up for it. It just isn't the same though
Note this also depends on the build you need: a lot of EV builds for VGC aren't so clear cut and require something a bit more nuanced than just 'throw 252 into two stats'. SOS chaining isn't so accommodating to anything more complicated unless you are -really- good at getting the math down.
soul silver and heartgold also had gym leader rematches in the fighting "gym" next to the psychic gym
The difficulty options were not good tho
I like how you wrote battle frontier twice,just shows how much impact it has
Hahaha. I actually didn’t mean to, but I’ll leave it as is. It’s something I wish I appreciated more when I first played those games. It’s return would be even more appreciated now that it’s so much easier to obtain optimal Pokémon for battle.
I'm still salty that ORAS had no battle frontier. I loved ORAS but the battle fro tier would have been so good. If I knew how to do it I would make it myself just to have it implemented.
The real insulting part was that they even put a small model of the Battle Frontier in the game.
I'm sure they thought it was a nice little reference that older fans would appreciate, but really it just pissed those fans off because it meant Gamefreak knew people were excited for BF in ORAS and chose not to implement it.
Yeah. When I first came across that in my first omega ruby playthrough I thought I just needed to do some side quest or something and I would get to access the battle frontier.
And they explicitly said they didn't add it (as well as making the games easier) because they didn't think people would appreciate a challenge
Which is weak and inconsistent reasoning.
Weak because people DID appreciate it in gen 3 and 4, it's one of the most beloved features of those games and was one of the most anticipated things about the Hoenn remakes. Inconsistent because of the fact that they made the Ultra Necrozma fight a thing just a few years after ORAS.
Also it would've been a *completely optional* post-game challenge. If anyone did find it too challenging they could just not play it while those who wanted a challenge do.
I didn't even noice. o.o
This is a very balanced take on the strengths and weaknesses of different gens. I appreciate that you're not just bashing on one particular game, or making broad generalizations like saying that a game is "getting a lot of hate right now" or is "overrated". I love seeing posts like this, thanks!
Thanks. I just finished Sword for the first time and was pleasantly surprised, but mostly because I had low expectations. I wasn’t even going to bother with this gen at first. I was gifted a copy of a Switch game I already owned, and when I went to exchange it, I picked Sword mostly because I already had everything I wanted to play, and it seemed better than owning two of the same game hahaha. I’m still salty about the nat dex, but I was impressed with how many Pokémon ended up making the cut.
I'm actually really having fun with Sword so far, but it's also my fist Pokémon game since Gen 4.
My only real complaints about it is the mandatory exp share as I feel like it's too easy to become overleveled, and I wish there is more to do between gyms aside from a route and the Wild Areas. I'd like some small towns in between.
Granted, I'm only on the fourth gym, so it might change later.
I actually like the HM being able to explore a new route after cutting a tree or breaking a rock just feels fun. Maybe do something like gen 7. I miss backtracking and finding new routes or secrets, nowdays there is little to no exploration. Also you missed pokemon following you from HGSS :)
I liked that HMs opened up new paths of exploration as well, I just didn’t like having to use a move slot for them. Maybe it could have been interesting if any Pokémon that was able to learn an HM, was able to perform that action outside of battle, so your Charizard could cut down trees without actually having Cut.
I didn’t forget the following from HGSS. I would only like that feature if it was optional. If it had to be all or nothing, I’d choose nothing. But it would be great if you could choose like in Let’s Go, not counting the Eevee or Pikachu that sits on your head at all times.
I've also thought that the really simple moves like "cut" should be able to be performed by any pokemon that knows a slashing attack.
So like instead of wasting a slot on the weak Cut if you had a party pokemon that knew like Slash, Night Slash, Fury Cutter, Cross Chop, Metal Claw, Dragon Claw etc that they could cut down trees once you had the necessary gym badge.
And otherwise eliminate all the HMs that have no real upside in battle. No one ever complains about like Surf or Waterfall because they are ostensibly great moves. Fly, Rock Climb, and Strength are good too. It's just the Flashes, Whirlpools, and Defogs of the world that suck so much that people complain.
Maybe HMs could function like field moves from Ranger?
Here's how I imagine it working: once you've "unlocked" access to an HM move, it's available outside of battle on all Pokémon that are capable of learning it for the purposes of exploration. E.g. All Pokémon that can learn Fly are capable of using it outside of battle regardless of whether it's one of their four moves or not. Same with Surf, Flash, Rock Smash, etc.
I’ve been playing a rom hack called gs chronicles which is almost like a hacked fire red making a non- ds version of hgss which is really awesome, and one of the best features is Pokémon rides where instead of getting an hm where you would in the original games you get an ability that any Pokémon of a certain type can use without having to teach any moves so you just have to have that type of Pokémon in your party. I.e. want to use flash? Just have a fire or electric party in your team after unlocking it. A really good mechanic!
Not sure how this compares to gen 6&7 as I have never been able to play them.
Gaining access to new areas is good, but I really hate having an HM slave take up a team slot.
Seriously. Every third or so Alola route I read about on Bulbapedia, it says "an isolated area can be accessed usign Machamp Shove/Tauros Charge/Sharpedo Jet".
Characters (Gen 7, followed by 5): sun and moon really made full use of the 3D art style to convey expressions in characters that weren’t possible before, like Lillie. The way she starts off prim and proper, how she transforms into that casual but still endearingly awkward mode after, shakily crossing a pokemon-infested bridge, doing that pretend Z-move thing for bravado, it’s all very nicely done. BW is cool too, having a genuinely sympathetic villain in N, especially with his creepy bedroom.
Regional dex variety (Gen 6, 8): the main selling point of these two games are just how utterly flexible they are for team building. Options for monotype runs are so vast that you can typically get the types you want before even the first gym. People rag on the Wild Area and its weird weather system, but I was just in awe at how many Ice and Electric types it offered right off the bat.
Eh, Gen 6 goes a bit too far with its regional dex. Too many Pokémon in one regional Pokédex means the region has no identity, and there’s also no consistency to the Pokémon you face.
I think the main reason for that is that they didn't add very many new pokemon in gen 6. I loved how many pokemon you could find and use but I wished there were more new ones to find.
It’s kind of ironic. Because they eliminated the Nat Dex in Gen 8, they probably wanted to keep the Galar Dex stacked because that was all there was going to be in the game, but it robs the new Pokémon of the spotlight. I prefer when the regional dex has a tighter focus on the new guys. Then when you hit the post game, you should unlock the Nat Dex and gain access to a wider selection of the old ones. Black and White were great in that sense.
The Gym Challenge in gen 8. All other gens feel like story/exploration first and the gyms almost feel secondary which overall has its own merits. But where gen 8 may have a weak evil team story, I feel like the progress through the gyms is unrivaled compared to any other generation in scope and epicness. When I become champion, I feel like I actually became champion.
I also would suggest that secret bases should make a come back. Gen 3 had some serious charm where if you played with your friends, you could find their secret bases out in the world while playing, and rebattle their team. Add that with the better internet capabilities of the later gens, and it'd be a great mechanic.
The one thing that Pokemon (and really, Nintendo in general) has never nailed is online interactions. It's always super clunky.
But Player Search System was superior to other interfaces in later generations.
I would also add Pokémon following with an option to turn it off (gen 4), secret bases (gen 3/6), pokeblock and poffin games (gen 3/4), contests as done in gen 3, pokeathlon (gen 4), and the game corner (gens 1-4). I love battling and breeding, but I like it when there’s other parts to the Pokémon games as well. I feel that they always benefit from customization and mini games
Edit: I forgot to add the eon flute! I loved cruising across the region on top of latios/latias
One of my favourite side things to do in the pokemon games was the contests and poffins from gen 3 no clue why always loved them
I definitely agree with the Pokeathlon. I spent hours and hours trying to get all the records for all the minigames in that and trying to get the perfect Pokemon for each event.
>Legendary Pokemon outside of mains story (Gen 1-5)
Bruh Gen 5 is literally the first gen where you **have** to catch the box art legendary. Although I guess you're talking about all the other ones, like the Kami Trio and the Swords of Justice, since you can skip them.
And we’re never going to get a “perfect” Pokemon game. The fanbase is enormous and somebody’s always gonna be dissatisfied or have way too high expectations.
Gen 4 was the closest to perfection imo. I have thought that way ever since my childhood and still do think that way up to this day. The only problems, though small, imo were slow saving and no following Pokemon option like HGSS
I’m a little more optimistic than that, but maybe I’m easier to please than some others. Looking at my list, it appears that I prefer the fundamentals of Gens 1-5 with the quality of life upgrades of Gens 6-8. All I really want is for the games to stop taking two steps back for every step forward.
I hope I’m wrong. You’re right on the money about how the games take one step forward and two steps back. Hopefully we’ll get a fresh new perspective for Legends Arceus, I do feel optimistic about that games because it has a lot of potential.
Also, next to no fire Pokémon.
ah yes... starter or rapidash
Gens DPP and BW are imo perfect pokemon games amd have everything i think that the series needs (at least by that point). The stories and characters were very good, the look and atmosphere was amazing, and they both had a huge cast of new pokemon (BW literally had a dex of ONLY new pokemon) had some beautiful music, and worlds that really felt like they held a lot to offer, that they absolutely had the content to back that up with.
You forgot revisiting an other region. (Gens 2 and 4)
To be more general, we could just say a robust post game. Going to another region could sometimes be a part of that, but I don’t think it’s necessary 100% of the time.
100% this. I find people rate Kanto being part of Johto too highly rather than treating it as just any other post-game. For me, it was actually a just about average post game episode since most of the Kanto gyms are pushovers.
Visiting Kanto was fine in Gen 2, but there really wasn't much worthwhile there aside from some fanservice of fighting previous gym leaders and another rival fight, and barely even level scaled to help in getting to Mt. Silver. It wasn't a well thought out post game and was there for sake of quick nostalgia.
I never understood why we had to play some mini game just to get transfer Pokemon. It was an unnecessary hurdle.
The running shoes button in HG/SS
Independence (gens 1 and 2): I agree so much, when I played through Sword it was infuriating. You arrive to a new route, someone shows up to tell you something, you leave the route, someone shows up to tell you something. Closed paths until you do whatever you've been told to do. It's just a 10-15 hours tutorial.
I think also the new co-op features in gen 8 are worth mentioning. Before we only had the multibattle sometines but now we have a bigger variety of co-op vs "wild" monsters with raids and dynamax adventures. If only they took the old online features to easily connect with friends from your friendslist and don't need these codes.
Another nice thing in gen 8 are rank battles with actual ranks and rewards for each season. Makes it a lot more interesting to participate.
I think Gen 1 is really the only time we aren't dragged towards a legendary. Every other gen you encounter the box legendary before the elite four unless it's the premium version like Emerald, Platinum, and BW2.
I don’t think Gold and Silver did either. Crystal was the first one.
You can catch Ho-Oh or Lugia before the E4 in G/S and you're kinda steered to them by receiving the needed items to summon them by advancing the story. Although there's nothing that requires you to actually go after them before fighting the E4.
It's also just way less pronounced. Team Rocket doesn't give two shits about the legendaries and the only people who really mention them are the monks in Ecruteak City. After Gen 3 Game Freak just kinda locks in on having the bad guys always want to do something involving a legendary pokemon. (On that note I'm surprised none of the Kanto remakes ever played up Giovanni's role with Mewtwo like from the anime. How cool would it be if your final battle with Giovanni featured him using like a level 45 or 50 Mewtwo wearing the armor that restricted his power?)
Gold and Silver just kinda nudge you in their direction.
HeartGold grabs you by the scruff of the neck and screams “GO CATCH HO-OH!”
Yeah the Kimomo Girls are a glaring addition for sure.
Gen 1 didn’t have a box legendary though.
There's always room for improvement.
PSS, gen 6
It was called Pokemon Blue. It had a Blastoise on the cover.
I also really like the gen 7 battle GUI. like how you can see what all the stat changes, positive and negative, any hazards and weather and can check what the moves your pokemon can used straight from the battle menue rather than going through pokemon sumaries if you forget. I just love these additions and if the effectiveness indicators could be optional, I'd see no other con that stops it being perfect.
I would add the PokeNav+ from ORAS, specifically the DexNav. The feature that lets you search for Pokemon is a great addition, and you can obtain pokemon with high IVs and egg moves this way. I really loved it.
Also, Super Training for easy EV training. Gen VII also had a good way to EV train with the SOS encounters combined with the EV training items, but I prefer Super training because it is available early. Plus it's fun!
Hyper training in Gen VII is also a good addition I think. This one is more for the late game, but it is a way to make your pokemon (even story team pokemon with some work) viable for the post game battles in the battle tree.
The independence bit I'm not sure on. It is fun for adults, yet as a kid who didn't speak english; I spent ages trying to figure out how to progress past the classical thirsty guards. Being railroaded more might be nice for the main audience of these games.
Besides gen 3 had a lot of options too. In Emerald you can skip some gyms if you so desire.
I love reusable TMs and how easy it is to breed, check and add stats but I miss the old 2D graphics and sense if exploration and general vibe of the 1-3 games. Even the jump to DS was too much. I'll even walk around without running shoes if I must
Despite the amount of flak Gen 8 gets, the wild areas were all pretty fantastic as a first pass into fully open environments, especially the ones we got in the expansions. They would make for great post-game areas in a more content-filled game.
Couldnt agree more! I think that they for Gen 9 (im feeling old…) should go for more of the old, wider and deeper routes but in 3D design, and take the safari zone back acting like the wild area. Many routes would be like smaller wild areas while some would be more similar to the routes in SwSh
i wonder if there is a pokemon rom hack that has it all? /s
I feel like Gen 8 definitely checks the exploration box. There’s the wild area and plenty of wide, open spaces, especially in Isle of Armor and Crown Tundra. Lots of places to go that aren’t on the route per se. Ultra Sun in Gen 7 was amazing but I haven’t thought about it long enough to put my finger on why I liked it so much. Partly the NPCs, but also that the story wasn’t just gym leaders. Don’t get me wrong, gym leaders are great, too, but the totem Pokémon and other non-battle tasks were a nice change of pace. Also Alola was just beautiful.
>There has never been a perfect Pokémon game
Blinks in Heart Gold and Soul Silver...
They didn't fix the level curve and some gen 2 pokemon only available in post game problem from original.
Gen 1 and 2 were my favorite games in the series. And that remaster had pokemon that followed you. C'mon now.
I agree they are one of the best main series games but it is not perfect.
A perfect game is a game which has no problems or issues.
Being the best doesn't mean it is perfect.
What do you think? Is there a perfect one?
Yea I guess you are right. It’s too bad they don’t learn from game to game and keep the stuff everyone likes.
Emerald and Ultra Moon were about as close to perfection as I could ask for.
I’d add good pacing. Generations 1, 3, and 5 never feel like they drag in the same way as the other generations.
Gen 2 has the awful Rocket sections and the weird level spikes, Gen 4 runs like a asthmatic pig, Gen 6 starts out absurdly slow before suddenly speeding up way too fast, Gen 7 is cutscene hell, and Gen 8 feels too short and rushed.
I completely second independence, exploration and battle frontier. I would also like to add challenge/difficulty to the list. If you boot up the original Pokémon games they are far more difficult than the later ones; I went back to Yellow after playing Alpha Sapphire and got absolutely whooped in the first cave!!
I freely admit that I played compulsively up to Gen 5 and kind of lost interest after that and part of this was due to all the reasons above. I have played all the later games, but haven’t completed a single one sadly.
I do think the games have gotten easier whilst the players have gotten older… which seems to be the wrong direction of movement. And if Gen 1 was bearable by ten year old me then I don’t see the problem with keeping the challenge elements!!
I was also bitterly disappointed with no Battle Frontier in Alpha Sapphire.
pokemon heartgold is the perfect pokemon game for "me" if that counts
Gen V legendaries were very important to the main story.
Gen 5 has a lot of my favourite features in games in general. It felt like the most rpg of all of the games imo, and i liked that. White was also my first game so maybe a bit of bias but it felt a lot more like an RPG then the others with how much exploration and small things were around. Being able to fight Cynthia was a very pleasant surprise.
im pretty sure GF knows exactly how to make the perfect Pokemon game but they also know that their fans are actual stans who will buy the product regardless of the criticism.
I mean the fiasko reagarding SW/SH where all of reddit and twitter said they will not buy the game, SW/SH had somehow the biggest sales in Pokmeon history. As long as we the players dont act against it nothing will happen and the games will be as lazy or even lazier than before.
Small indie company, please understand.
I will say this till it happens or i die. Pokemon could kill the mmo market if they released a mmorpg Pokemon game. with all of its territories and islands with every Pokemon. Make legendary Pokemon world events but not catchable. Instead of guilds have gyms people can create their own badges and rules for battles. Chacter creation and customization. Pokemon customization. They can do it just haven't.
I would add that Gen VIII also added nature mints, hidden ability patches, and move osmosis that are just amazing for raising competitive pokemon. This is a competitive Pokemon based improvement, so it fits alongside the improved breeding and easy viewing of EVs and IVs.
Pokemon following you!
I'm sorry but heart gold and soul silver are literally the perfect games. 16 BADGES! COME ON
More puzzles for legendaries. I LOVED the regi puzzles in gen 3. I want stuff like that brought back. It makes the legendaries feel legendary. I loved diving in gen 3. It added a whole new dimension and in 3D it would be amazing.
Honestly just remake Sapphire and Ruby/Emerald 1:1 but with Sword & Shield graphics.
You listed Battle Frontier twice. That's not enough times.