Don’t Read the Comments

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday, everyone!

This post was actually an idea about a month or so ago. I figured that now is as good of a time as any to hit “publish” and share my thoughts on a piece of advice that is generally given to every content creator on the Internet.

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Published near the end of this past January, “Don’t Read the Comments” by Eric Smith is a story about navigating the harsh online world of harassment and doxxing while also showcasing how beautiful online friendships can be. It was a decent, cute story. There will be no spoilers here, and I hope there will be no spoilers in the comments.

As bloggers, comments are our main way of interacting with readers. However, don’t read the comments is a common piece of advice for those who put themselves out on the Internet, mainly while streaming or on YouTube. Let’s be real, everyone reads the comments. So why does that piece of advice — to ignore the comments, to be blissfully ignorant of them — stand out?

The advice at its simplest is to prevent your feelings from being hurt. Don’t engage with the trolls. They’re looking for a rise out of you. Just ignore them. They’ll get bored eventually.

Sounds a lot like the advice you give your kid on the playground when someone else’s spawn makes fun of your kid’s shirt, doesn’t it?

don't read the comments
There used to be a Twitter account dedicated to this.

Giving the human race the benefit of the doubt, the majority of people in the comments and reply sections are polite, courteous, perhaps interested in healthy debate, and it’s one of the best ways for people to communicate and reach out on the Internet. But then there are those trolls, people who argue for the sake of arguing and wish to use their words to hurt the author. Most of the time, it seems to “merely” be online. Yet, other times, it’s physical threats.

Gamergate, a movement that literally forced women gaming journalists and developers out of their homes due to rape and death threats. Bianca Devins’ murder just last year. Check out all the angry, anti-feminist tweets from boys complaining about women-driven movies like Captain Marvel, Wonder Woman, and Birds of Prey. As a woman, this is what I mainly see, and I know that people who identify as anything other than female are not safe from disparaging comments either.

With all that said, it just highlights even more how thoughtful and kind comments can make a creator’s day. Mental health awareness is more prevalent than ever, and it is not a coincidence that this awareness has risen in accordance with how much of our lives is spent online. While negativity stays with us much longer than positive interactions, since our brains are wired to do so — it is one of the many reasons our brain alerts us to danger, to try to keep us out of harm’s way, but it can still suck — a positive comment or helpful critique allows us to retrain our brain to pump out endorphins.

So, since everyone reads the comments, try to be that person that is helpful to the creator. We’re all fighting our own battles.

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Friday Favorites: Fighting-Type Pokemon

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

Considering how some of my favorite types of attacks in Pokemon are more physical than special, it’s a bit of a wonder why I don’t think of Fighting-types more often. Nevertheless, I do have a few favorites!

Pokemon | Video Games | Gaming | Nintendo | Friday | Doublexjump.com

Lucario

Probably one of the first Fighting-type Pokemon that I included on one of my main teams, Lucario was a great asset. Perhaps he’s a bit overused, but I enjoyed having the Pokemon on my team.

Gallade

Gallade’s design is awesome — especially his Mega evolution design — and I enjoy the dual psychic and fighting typing Gallade has. It was a challenge to balance out his attacks to accommodate both types, but I always had fun with both him and my Gardevoir in double battles.

Chesnaught

I always pick the grass starter in Pokemon games, and X and Y were no exceptions. Chespin and its evolutions were, probably, the least popular design-wise when it came to the starters, but I was pleased with Chesnaught and its power.

Clobbopus

This little Pokemon made me laugh when I first saw it. Considering it investigates stuff by punching them and it has the intelligence level of a toddler, the very existence of Clobbopus makes my day.

Falinks

I didn’t know what the heck this thing was when I first saw it, but when I was able to battle it, I was quite amused at the Pokemon’s little individual units marching together. Its signature move — No Retreat — is pretty cool, too. Aside from raising all of its stats, it’s reminiscent of a desperate last stand in a battle. Never give up, never surrender!

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High Hopes (A Shield Nuzlocke): Chapter 4

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone!

This is chapter four of my Nuzlocke, and it was therapeutic to write amid everything that is going on now. If you missed the first chapter or want to be reminded of the rules, feel free to go back to that post. Or, if you missed chapter three, that post is right here. Hope you enjoy this piece!

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Chapter 4:

Camping sucked.

Okay, so it was an interesting experience, being with my Pokemon out in the Wild Area. After a few strict rules — such as telling Ryder that, no, he could not eat Piccolo or Posie, our new Bunnelby companion, no matter how awful my first few attempts at making curry were — my Pokemon got along well enough during the few times we needed to put up the tent.

All in all, the few nights we camped out in the Wild Area were fine, but I definitely preferred an actual bed to a sleeping bag. I’m sure Hop was thrilled with the whole camping experience, wherever he was in the Wild Area. Growing up, my friend was always ready for adventure while I liked my adventure time to be scheduled. After all, I never wanted to miss any of the big Pokemon battles on television or my mother’s desserts.

A Pokemon journey was a learning curve for me and, seeing how many other would-be trainers that were running around the Wild Area like Blaziken with its head cut off, I seemed to be the only one experiencing these hang-ups.

Part of the anxiety was probably due to being hyper aware that the opening ceremony for the gym challenge would be happening in a couple days, and if I didn’t cross the Wild Area to reach Motostoke in time, there’d be disappointment all around me.

Hop would never forgive his “greatest rival” for being late, Leon would question why he gave me Bond in the first place, Mum’s face would fall in confusion if I walked back into the house so soon…

“Freya, stop taunting Everest.” I stepped in between my riled-up Oddish trying to challenge my shyer Delibird to a fight, and I added my Pokemon to the list of those who would be disappointed in me if I didn’t go through with this.

My Oddish stuck her tongue out at me and I returned her to her pokeball instead of retaliating. I decided against telling Everest that he could, you know, freeze the tip of her leaves or something to get her off his back, but with my luck, it would start a team brawl.

Despite everything, I was happy with our little team. Since entering the Wild Area, I’ve gotten a full team, along with an extra Pokemon hanging out in my Pokemon Box, and Piccolo even evolved into a Dottler, which I had to keep convincing myself was awesome. Because it was great that Piccolo evolved, got a little stronger and all that, but…

She wouldn’t be winning any races except maybe against a Metapod, that’s for sure.

I glanced around as Bond helped me finish packing up the tent and most of my other Pokemon were in their balls. Piccolo was inching her way back from the edge of the lake towards us, her stubby feet having taken her all morning to get to the edge of the lake in the first place for a drink after her spoonful of breakfast.

She chirped happily as she spotted me looking at her and I couldn’t help but give her a crooked smile. “Let me help,” I said, opting to just return her to her pokeball instead of waiting for her to catch up. Bond and I would have been waiting until noon for her to reach our sides.

“Alright, let’s keep going,” I said, and Bond hopped up to cling to my shoulder as we continued through the Wild Area. I wasn’t planning on catching any other Pokemon, aiming to just go straight to Motostoke in order to reach the city with time to spare for the opening ceremony.

Motostoke City was big enough to swallow Postwick five times over. As giant as the wild Onix seemed at the beginning of the Wild Area, a trainer’s Onix near Motostoke’s Pokemon Center looked like a runt next to the mechanisms that kept the city running.

“What did we get ourselves into?” I murmured, and Bond cooed in my ear, his voice warbling and his grip on my shoulder tightening.

“All right there, Kris?”

Bond and I were suddenly dwarfed in Leon’s and his Charizard’s shadows. My shoulders relaxed at the familiar face and I admitted, “I feel lost.”

“Story of my life,” Leon said with a laugh. “I’d never remember the way to the stadium if it weren’t for Charizard.” I refrained from mentioning just how often Leon, as the Champion, would have visited Motostoke Stadium. “You heading that way to register for the challenge?”

“Yes,” I said before I could back out, change my mind, and tell Leon to use his endorsement on someone else. “I’m sure Hop is already there.”

Indeed, after Charizard directed Leon and me to the steam-powered lift that would bring us to the stadium, we spotted Hop waiting just outside of the massive building.

“Kris, you made it!” Hop was nearly bouncing right outside of the stadium, and I’m glad he didn’t seem any worse for wear after the Wild Area. “Just think! Everyone’ll be watching the opening ceremony for the Gym Challenge… My mum, your mum, the whole world! I can’t tell if I’m trembling from nerves or excitement! Lee, you coming in now, too?”

“Not just yet,” Leon said, ruffling his brother’s hair. “The gym leaders are coming in for the opening ceremony, so I’m going to meet up with them tonight. You two go on and get registered.”

“Have fun, then,” Hop said before taking hold of my arm. “C’mon, let’s go!”

The lobby was packed with other gym challengers, so much so that I barely heard Hop mention how every other challenger there was a potential rival. We shouldered our way to the counter, nearly getting shoved down by some jerk in a bright pink coat in the process, and handed over our endorsements to the stadium official.

“Fancy that,” the official said. “This is the first time we’ve had a couple of challengers endorsed by the Champion himself.” My cheeks went red as the official added, “You two must be something special.”

I wasn’t sure if being friends with the Champion’s younger brother warranted me as special enough for an endorsement. Yet, we continued through the motions to register, picking out our uniform numbers and being surprised that the League Chairman booked rooms for all the challengers at the nearby inn.

“Alright, then,” Hop said as we got our Challenge Bands. “Let’s go check out the fancy digs!”

I took a deep breath as Hop beat me out of the lobby and stared down at my Challenge Band, Bond reaching out to touch it out of curiosity.

This was real. I was a Gym Challenger. I would be traveling all over the Galar Region for a chance to ultimately battle Leon for the Champion title. All around me were other challengers, challengers who knew as well as I did that not all of us would make it to the end. Would my team and I make it? Did I want to go that far in this challenge?

“One step at a time, I suppose,” I said to Bond, taking him in my arms as I made my way back out of the stadium as well. At the very least, I was going to get an actual bed for the night. I intended to enjoy it.

Current Team: Bond the Sobble, Piccolo the Dottler, Ryder the Rookidee, Posie the Bunnelby, Freya the Oddish, Everest the Delibird
Body Count: 0

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To Be In Control

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday, everyone!

I apologize for no solo posts last week. This whole virus nonsense has been throwing many people — myself included — for a loop, particularly where my day job is concerned. Diving into video games has been my go-to coping method.

Video Games | Simulation | Gaming | Control | Escapism | Doublexjump.com

When Rachel and I decided to do a themed month of posts for March, the simulation genre was picked because it is genuinely one of our favorite genres of games, especially since we started Double Jump. Considering what state the world is in right now, it seems particularly fitting.

One of the reasons that people enjoy simulation games is the fact that you are in control. In the Sims, you micromanage everything about the little avatars’ existences, from who they fall in love with to when they’re allowed to use the restroom. Business simulation games — Game Dev Tycoon or Rollercoaster Tycoon, for example — allows you to create the business that you want. Sure, you may have to bow a bit to the customers, but once you gain enough money from your venture, you’re pretty immune to criticism.

Capitalism at its finest.

We see evidence of this need to be in control happening all around us right now because of a super virus that is sweeping across the globe. Store shelves that used to hold toilet paper are bare because people are panic-buying up the supplies and, honestly, it baffled me as to why toilet paper of all things was being snatched up. I’m starting to understand that, perhaps, it’s not because it’s toilet paper — it’s because this panic-buying gives people some semblance of control. Attempting to be prepared for a month’s isolation, or longer, is the only way that some people can feel like they’re in control of something, that they’re able to beat back this virus.

Escapism is also a reason as to why people play video games, particularly simulation games. I have poured more hours these past couple of weeks into Stardew Valley than I ever have since first getting the game. With the coronovirus in the air, daily life has been odd. We don’t know what’s going to happen. We don’t know what’s going on. Let me dive into a world that does not have super viruses and where I’m able to control the environment around me.

Last week (which is really weird to say, because while this virus has been a thing for the past couple of months, it has only hit my city and state within the past couple of weeks), my day job has had little containers of hand sanitizer on the counter for both ourselves and our customers, particularly since we handle cash on a daily basis. There have been too many people asking where we found the hand sanitizer because, “it’s like liquid gold!” and we’ve been fortunate that people take it to heart when I tell them that, “You can’t steal it, you need to share.”

Because, like buying 96 rolls of toilet paper and the entire meat section in the local supermarket, this is something that we can control. Help each other out. Share resources. Check in on your neighbors. Be conscious of both social distancing and if there is anything you can do to help and share compassion.

The world may be going to Hell in a hand-basket but we’re all here together on this ride. Let’s try to remember that.

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Stuff Happens [Card/Board Game Review]

Stuff Happens | Game Review | Gaming | Games | Review | Card Game | Doublexjump.com

krismii
Stuff Happens is a simple enough card game that we picked up on a whim while on a weekend getaway with a friend. It took us months to eventually play it, but we had a great time with our friends when we did so!

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Honestly, I thought Stuff Happens was kind of like Cards Against Humanities. It’s not at all like that and when we read the directions I wondered how fun it would be. It turned out to be a lot more fun than I thought. You need to have a good, decent-sized group to play with, though.

krismii
There is a giant stack of cards that all have unfortunate incidents and circumstances described on them, ranging from “going bald” to “getting a nail stuck in your foot” and plenty of other scenarios. Each card has a rank depending on where it lies on the Misery Index, courtesy of the creators of the game. Each person starts with a random set of three of these cards to start the game off, creating their beginning range of the index.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Then you take turns picking up a card from the draw pile. When it’s your turn to pick up a card, you don’t say where it lies on the Misery Index, but just say what it is. For example, bleach in your eye. (Yes, I believe that’s actually one of the cards.) The person to your left then needs to guess where it lies on their timeline. If they have cards that lie on the index between 7 and 10 and they guess the card in question is either an 8 or 9, they point to where they think it lies. So, you’re not necessarily guessing the number, but gauging where it could be based on what you already have.

krismii
If you’re correct, you get to keep the card. If you’re incorrect, it goes to the next person to guess. If no one guesses correctly before the round returns to the person who read the card, then the the card i discarded. The first person who has ten cards wins. It’s a fun game, one that keeps everyone guessing, even if we didn’t always agree with the misery index that came with the game. For example, according to the game, your favorite local team relocating is somehow worse than falling into a septic tank.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
If you guess correctly and get to keep the card, then you place it in your timeline where it belongs. This actually gets harder the more cards you collect. If you have a card that rank 1.5 and the card next to it is 1.7 then it’s hard to guess which card might land in the 1.6 spot. The wider the range, the more likely you’ll be correct.

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There were definitely cards that are difficult to place regardless of what range you have in front of you. An interesting twist to this game may be for the drawer to determine where the card would end up on their personal “misery index” rather than the game’s list, and then for others to guess correctly. Either way, it’s a great game to play with a good group of friends.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
It’s a much better game than I originally thought it would be. It’s fun to play with the right group of people and you certainly need a good-sized group. This wouldn’t be as intense with three people or so. When we played there were five of us and that was a good size. If you haven’t tried this game, put it on the list. You’ll be surprised at the fun you can have with it.

Stuff Happens gets a rating of…
Skip It | Try It | Buy It

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Friday Favorites: Harvest Moon Games

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

The Harvest Moon series — rather, Story of Seasons as it’s called now — was probably my first dip into the simulation video game genre. While I’ve definitely turned my attention more towards Stardew Valley than this series, plenty of Harvest Moon games still hold a special place in my heart.

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Animal Parade

I honestly haven’t played this game too much, as I prefer my Harvest Moon games on a handheld rather than a bigger console, but I did enjoy what I did play of it. The style of the game is cute and the cast of characters were great. My favorite part of this game? Your marriage and children actually have a bit of substance. Your spouse can help out on the farm or with other chores, and the children actually grow and have some personality.

Island of Happiness/Sunshine Islands

While technically two games, I feel like Sunshine Islands was developed to right all the issues that Island of Happiness had. These games have my favorite cast of characters, and Island of Happiness would have been on this list alone had its controls not been the horrendous touch-screen things. Sunshine Islands wasn’t too bad either, but the plot of raising all the islands was a bit annoying.

Harvest Moon 3D: A New Beginning

This installment in the series deserves a place on this list due to how much time I sunk into it. It was addicting trying to revive the whole town while also being given free reign as to how the town was designed. Being able to move buildings wherever you want, both for the town and the farm, was a great mechanic. This game also had a good online mode as well — it was simple and enabled players to help each other with quality animal products and gifts.

Harvest Moon: More Friends of Mineral Town

While Friends of Mineral Town was my first foray into the Harvest Moon series, I enjoyed the female version of the game. This game was just fun in its simplistic way. The only goal was to create a thriving farm and, if you wished, to make friends with the rest of the townsfolk. It was the perfect, no-stress, chill game.

What are your favorite Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons games? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Journey to Pokemon Home

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday, everyone!

I finally got Pokemon Home and gave it a whirl over this weekend. My first main experiment was to see how many Pokemon from some of my old favorite teams could go to the Galar region!

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Right before the weekend, I finally got Pokemon Home. It’s been out for about three weeks now — February 11 —  and I honestly kind of kept forgetting about it until recently. The successor to Pokemon Bank, Home is both a mobile and Nintendo Switch app for Pokemon storage. While there is a basic, free plan for Home, there are so many more options and storage for your Pokemon with the paid plan. Considering the paid plan is only 15 or so bucks a year, it’s not too bad. If you’re an avid Pokemon collector, it’s well worth it.

When I turned on Pokemon Home, I gave it a test run to see how it works and was greeted with this dude:

grandoak
I’ll admit, I was a bit startled.

After doing all the updates that were necessary for my original 3DS, I booted up Pokemon Bank to see if I even still had Pokemon in there. I had about half a box of legendary Pokemon that I received throughout special events during past years, so I figured they would be the first residents for Home.

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This little guy popped up once and then I never saw him again. I wonder how well this would have gone if Nintendo gave this job to the Pokeball Guy from Sword/Shield…

The process was simple enough, although it was interesting trying to juggle both my 3DS and my Switch Lite on my desk. During the move from Bank to Home, you need to input a Moving Key and have a limited amount of time to do so. Once the key is accepted, it takes a few good minutes for the Pokemon to move from Bank to Home, a progress during which you cannot use the software. It was nice to see the Pokemon in Home, and once you connect your Sword/Shield game to Home, the software allows you to easily move the Pokemon from Home to the boxes in Sword/Shield.

If Sword/Shield allows the Pokemon, that is. Conveniently, Home has icons that indicate whether or not a Pokemon can move from Home to Sword/Shield. Hopefully, there will eventually be DLC or a patch that allows more Pokemon in Sword/Shield, but for now it’ll be interesting to see which Pokemon from my past teams will be able to join my Rillaboom and company in Galar.

So I grabbed my Y version and got to work.

As a bit of background, my Y version is probably my Pokemon game with the most time sunk into it. I have a little over 210 hours on my Y version — first started on December 25, 2013 and I entered the Hall of Fame for the first time a mere three days later — compared to the almost 80 hours on my Sword version. While I don’t have my Y Pokedex complete, I have spent the majority of those hours collecting my favorite Pokemon to recreate my preferred teams from generations 1 through 5 to go alongside my generation 6 team from Kalos:

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Here are all my babies! 

Including my main Kalos team on the right, all these Pokemon were raised up to level 100 with the help of a plethora of Elite Four runs as well as challenges from the Battle Chateau.

It’s a bit bittersweet to think about, actually. Pokemon Bank, which came out in 2014 for the Americas, was first used to allow me to gather all of these Pokemon for the then-current Pokemon game so I could have all my favorites together. Now, Pokemon Bank will help me move all of these guys to Pokemon Home where we’ll see just how many of them I can bring to Galar.

Considering how much of a soft spot I have for my Y version, I was honestly considering breeding and hatching eggs of these guys to then move into Home. However, I realized that it’s been literally a year and a half since I last turned on Y. Case in point was a poor Eevee that was apparently stuck in an egg since July 2018. Instead, I spent a little time to get said eggs, but decided that the baby-versions of my favorites will remain behind in Y while the adults will travel to Home.

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SO. MANY. EGGS. Featuring Brady the Shiny Butterfree, who had been my first encounter/capture in Y as a little Caterpie.

If and when I decide to return to Pokemon Y, I’ll have a grand time hatching and raising my favorite Pokemon again, which is one of the best parts of these games.

With all the eggs created, it was time to actually move my teams to Pokemon Bank then to Home. I decided to just move my teams from generations 1 through 5 first; I haven’t quite figured out if I will leave my original Kalos team in Y and create eggs of them for Home and Galar, or if I will eventually also move my original Kalos team over as well. My Alola team will be for another time and day.

pokemonhome
Quite a difference between this screenshot and the previous cell phone pic of them all in Y, huh?

It didn’t take long at all for a box of 30 Pokemon to move from Pokemon Bank to Home. In fact, I’m sure it took a few minutes longer for Bank to actually just load up on my 3DS. It was rather exciting to see most of my favorites with updated sprites in Home!

Now the big test was to see just how many of them could be moved into Sword. I’ll be honest, I was a bit disappointed with the results:

pokemonhome3

It was disheartening to see all of the glaring, red, “do not transport” symbols amid all of my favorites, particularly with the starter Pokemon (I want my Grovyle!). After separating the Pokemon that could go to Sword from the ones who are staying in Home, 13 out of 30 — almost half — of my trained Pokemon can visit Galar. Yet, the only true new Pokemon that can join me is my Venusaur (unless you count the pink Gastrodon, since I’ve only seen the blue version of the Pokemon in Sword); considering my Galar pokedex is complete, I have all the other Pokemon in my box already, albeit not as trained as the ones from Y.

Not only are the majority of my teams unable to come to Galar, some of the ones who can join me don’t have all of their moves available. The Pokemon with an exclamation point beside them indicate that at least one of their moves cannot be used in Sword/Shield, which I didn’t even think about but in hindsight wasn’t surprising. I expected the moves that weren’t available in Sword/Shield to just disappear from my Pokemon’s move pools, but apparently you need to do that yourself, if you read the moves’ descriptions:

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I never realized “Return” wasn’t in Sword/Shield until this happened, to be honest. “Flash,” “Hidden Power,” and “Flame Burst” were the other moves, in case anyone was curious.

I was initially hesitant to do this move with my teams generations 1 through 5 because I was afraid most of my favorite Pokemon would be forced to retire, so to speak, in Pokemon Home. I can’t move the rest of my teams back to Bank to bring them back in Y. All those Pokemon that I spent over 200 hours raising for battles are now stuck in Home.

To be honest, it’s okay that these Pokemon are retired. It was a startling realization that I hadn’t visited my Y game in well over a year, and at least I now have my favorites with me on my Switch Lite. With that said, Nintendo, I would love a feature in Pokemon Home reminiscent of My Pokemon Ranch — give me a mode where I can see all of my Pokemon milling about together, maybe even give me the ability to pat them or give them little treats here and there, please!

This move from Y to Bank to Home to Sword answered some questions, but also brought up new ones. Do I need to wait until the expansion pass in June for the pokedex to fully expand to bring over more of my teams? Or, considering this is a mere 30 Pokemon out of almost-900, are my particular favorites unlucky enough to be left out of the additional 200 Pokemon that are joining the Galar region? I know the Alolan starter Pokemon are invited to Galar — are the majority of the 200 additional Pokemon from Alola as well? Perhaps we’ll see when I decide to go through my Pokemon from my Moon games along with other Pokemon from Kalos.

In the meantime, I’ll be back in Pokemon Sword where I will be hard at work leveling up my Sword team to level 100 to match some of their veteran teammates.

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Flashback Friday: Wii Sports

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone!

February is pretty much done. It’s been a bit of a whirlwind of a month with all sorts of life stuff happening to disrupt our regular routines. We’re looking forward to the next month and seeing what it brings!

Video Games | Nintendo | Wii | Nintendo Wii | Wii Sports | Sports | Gaming | Doublexjump.com

Wii Sports was bundled along with the Wii console way back in 2006, being a collection of sports-orientated games to show off the capabilities of the Wii remotes (this is totally what 1-2 Switch should have been for the Switch console instead of an extra 60 bucks, but I digress). With the main characters of the games being your own personal Miis, it was a good move on Nintendo’s part, especially since it is the bestselling single-platform game of all time.

(I’m not sure how much of that is due to the game being bundled with the console but, hey, it’s also available on its own and it’s an impressive feat nonetheless.)

Wii Sports itself has been acclaimed for its role in bonding experiences between family members as well as being used regularly for physical therapy, particularly in elderly gamers. With the motion-controls of the Wii remotes and the fact that you need to be up and moving for Wii Sports, the game has been credited to paving the way for gamers to be more physical. Since then, we’ve seen more motion-controls being used in games to virtual reality to augmented reality on mobile to encourage people to walk more.

I remember when we first got the Wii and Wii Sports. Our console was set up in the cellar and connected to the house’s largest television (which is basically my father’s TV — hi, Dad!). The games were fun, with Rachel tending to win because she’s better at the sports games — I remember not being able to play the baseball one for the life of me. I did really well with the boxing, though!

My favorite part of this game, though? We were able to rope both Mom and Dad into playing with us once in a while. Despite Dad being able to win fairly easily in real bowling, it was hilarious to see him trying to figure out the mechanics of the game so he could beat Rachel. With all her practice, Rachel knew the precise angle to toss the bowling ball down the aisle to ensure strikes every time.

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My Thoughts on Cindered Shadows

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday, everyone!

While I really didn’t need an excuse to get back into playing Fire Emblem: Three Houses, the Cindered Shadows DLC was a great reason to turn the game on again. And, honestly, I wouldn’t mind more DLC like this for the game!

Video Games | Gaming | Fire Emblem | Fire Emblem Three Houses | Cindered Shadows | Nintendo | Doublexjump.com

The Cindered Shadows DLC came out for Fire Emblem: Three Houses about a week and a half ago. Being only 7 chapters long, it took me between 8 and 9 hours to complete, especially when one considers that Cindered Shadows is mostly battles with a touch of exploration here and there. In fact, Cindered Shadows reminded me much of the earlier Fire Emblem games, where it would mostly be battles with bits of story in between fights.

I enjoyed the battles in Cindered Shadows, each battle offering a new challenge and seeing me use the Divine Pulse to edit my moves more times than I have in the regular routes I’ve played. I did miss the more involved aspects of the exploration parts, though. No support conversations or skill increases were a bit odd, as the character growth is one of my favorite parts of Fire Emblem games.

I was also intrigued by some things in the Abyss that really didn’t play much of a part in Cindered Shadows. Who was that mysterious woman by the pagan altar? What was up with the empty wayseer’s room? Are they the same person? Once I spend enough renown in the Abyss during the main story, I presume these questions will be answered, and it gives me more incentive to continue the main story to try to figure out the answers.

The four Abyssian characters are lots of fun, although I was confused as to Constance’s split personality with the sun and Hapi’s random sighing ability. They were interesting, brought a little more flavor to the characters, but I did not find them necessary. I also did find Balthus to seem very similar to Raphael from the Golden Deer house, especially if one considers that Balthus was originally from the Alliance territory as well. Still, he was a great big brother figure to the other characters, and I loved his war monk class. A brawler and a healer? Yes, please!

I really liked all four of the character classes from Abyss, actually. Yuri, I think, was the character I utilized the least in battle despite his high avoidance rate, but his personality was delightful. His past was interesting, especially since I’ve heard he has a couple of connections with the characters from the main story and I’m looking forward to unlocking his support conversations with everyone.

Speaking of pasts, it was nice to also learn more about Byleth. Her mother finally has a name! She’s no longer just the catalyst for Byleth’s mysterious past! While the main bad guy of the Cindered Shadows DLC was fairly obvious from the beginning, as was the plot, it was still a fun a side story.

Originally, I was hoping Cindered Shadows would be more of a full-fledged route rather than just a side story when I first heard of it. I was selfishly hoping that Cindered Shadows would involve a Golden Ending, one where all of the characters no matter what house could stay alive, especially since the three house leaders were with Byleth as a team when exploring the Abyss. I liked the interactions between them all and wished there were supports between the house leaders for you to unlock during that time.

I just want all the characters to be happy at the end, dammit.

With that said, I did enjoy the DLC overall. The new mechanics and aspects it brought to the main game are fun to explore and discover, and it brought along just the right amount of new characters without it getting overwhelming.

What did you think of Cindered Shadows? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Friday Favorites: Bug-Type Pokemon

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

Bug-type Pokemon are few and far in between on my teams throughout the eight generations of the series. However, the Galar region did reignite my interest in this type!

Pokemon | Bug | Nintendo | Friday | Video Games | Gaming | Doublexjump.com

Ninjask

When I discovered Ninjask in the third Pokemon generation, I pretty much added it to my team because it was classified as the “ninja Pokemon.” It’s high speed stat quickly made it one of my favorites on the team, and I’ve always found it interesting how unique it’s evolution method was to receive Shedinja.

Joltik

Who doesn’t love this adorable, tiny Pokemon? It’s evolution can definitely be scary, but a Joltik is a cute addition to your team, not to mention the electric moves it can learn to bolster your team’s special moves.

Araquanid

Dewpider, the pre-evolution, was adorable and despite how I would probably avoid Araquanid Pokemon at all costs if I ever encountered one in real life, my Araquanid in my Moon game was a fantastic teammate. Its bug typing negated some of the weaknesses of a typical water type Pokemon, and vice-versa, making the Pokemon fairly versatile.

Orbeetle

A little Blipbug was one of my first encounters in Pokemon Sword and it became one of my best team members, especially when it fully evolved into Orbeetle. The dual psychic and bug type Pokemon, Orbeetle was one of my strongest battlers during the endgame.

Frosmoth

This Pokemon is so pretty! It’s one of my favorite designed Pokemon from the Galar region, and its pre-evolution Snom has developed quite the fan following. Frosmoth is a late addition to the Sword and Shield games, but it was fun and challenging raising one at that point.

What are your favorite Bug-type Pokemon? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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