Nuzlockes and Wonderlocks with Adventure Rules!

Pokemon | Nintendo | Nuzlocke | Challenge | Video Games | Gaming | Doublexjump.com

krismii
If you’ve been following along with our Twitch channel and our blog, you probably noticed that both Rachel and I are doing a couple of Nuzlocke runs with Pokemon Sword and Shield, respectively. We’re both enjoying our runs so far, and today we brought along a friend who has a couple of Nuzlocke runs up his sleeve as well. Please welcome Ian from Adventure Rules!

MiiIan
Thank you! I am really excited to be here (virtually, that is) chatting with the two of you, particularly about Pokemon. Even more particularly about Nuzlockes, because that’s the aspect of Pokemon that most draws me into the games these days. As soon as I finished Sword and Shield I was thinking about what it would be like to Nuzlocke the game, both from the perspective of how fun it would be but also any new game elements that might complicate the challenge. Were there any parts of it that you all were worried about or unsure about as you thought about Nuzlocking these games?

rachmii
We’re happy to have you here, Ian. I played through Shield first and I knew right away I wanted to do a Nuzlocke for Sword. It’s been a hot minute since I’ve done a Nuzlocke (and actually followed through with it) so I figured now was the perfect opportunity to do so. As for rules, I looked up the general rules online and then checked to see how I could tweak them for the game. The Wild Area for one was a big concern. How exactly do you make that fit into a Nuzlocke?

krismii
Nuzlocking isn’t something we do normally, so I was excited for this new challenge. When trying to figure out the rules for our more basic Nuzlockes, the Wild Area rules did get modified a bit after I started my challenge. It’s actually stated on the first chapter of my Nuzlocke a few weeks ago. Originally I was going to have each section of Wild Area be a new “area” so to speak for a new capture, but seeing how vast the Wild Area is made me rethink it. Now, I allow myself one new capture from a new Wild Area zone after each gym badge. Ian, you’re not doing a regular Nuzlocke. Yours is a Wonderlocke (or Surpriselocke?), correct? How has that been working out? Do you like it better than the regular Nuzlocke rules?

MiiIan
It’s hard to say right off whether or not I prefer a standard Nuzlocke to a Wonderlocke – I think they offer different experiences. The classic Nuzlocke I would say is a bit harder, but if the aspect of Pokemon that is most exciting to you is meeting new Pokemon and having lots of variety for your team, then a Wonderlocke can have a bit more to offer. Particularly if you’ve already played the game recently, during a regular Nuzlocke you can find yourself ending up with a team that is pretty similar to what you’ve already used. I didn’t want to be using Corviknight, Inteleon, and Coalossal again, for example. But the Wonderlocke does come with some different challenges also.

rachmii
That’s true. Whenever I play a new Pokemon game I aim to have my team be all brand-new Pokemon. So, playing a Nuzlocke immediately after completing the main game some of my Pokemon are the same. I don’t mind though. I’ll need all the help I can get and it’ll be nice to know how certain Pokemon already work. I’d love to try a Wonderlocke for my next challenge though… what are some of the challenges you’re facing with that?

MiiIan
The biggest challenge is one I just ran in to my last play session. You know how there’s a limit – managed by your badges – to what level Pokemon you can capture in the wild area? Along with that limitation there is also a limit to what level your traded Pokemon can be when you level them up. So if you’re training a Pokemon that used to belong to someone else and it goes above a particular level, it will start to disobey you until you get the appropriate badge. Before you have any badges, that level is 20. But Milo’s ace is also level 20. So I trained my Pokemon to level 20 to be able to deal with Milo, but they hit 21 before I made it to the gym. Long story short, most of my team doesn’t obey my commands half the time now. So that’s definitely an issue unique to the Wonderlocke.

krismii
I honestly never even thought of the leveling aspect of traded Pokemon when you first mentioned you were doing a Wonderlocke! Considering I don’t do much trading — aside from when Rachel and I were trading to complete our Pokedexes in our original run-throughs of the games — I forgot about the accelerated growth rate of traded Pokemon. Are you worried about losing more Pokemon in a Wonderlocke than a regular Nuzlocke? For my regular Shield Nuzlocke, I’m finding that the heightened levels of the wild Pokemon, especially those in the Wild Area, to be dangerous when it comes to training my Pokemon. Trainers aren’t so bad, but wild Pokemon can get the best of my team. Rachel, are you finding any special challenges in your Nuzlocke, or any you’re anticipating?

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Oh, that’s tough. It makes it all the more challenging though. You’re using similar rules as a Nuzlocke, right? If a member of your team faints, it dies? That must be frustrating when they don’t listen to you but interesting all the same. As for me, I’m not too far ahead in the game at the time of writing this post. So, as for right now, I’m not finding any special challenges. Unless you count me needing to pay attention more. There were a handful of times I forgot I was doing a Nuzlocke and derped around the routes while trying to level-grind.

MiiIan
Kris’s point about the wild Pokemon being higher leveled has absolutely affected my approach as well, particularly in the wild area. Where the area is broken into separate smaller “regions,” when you cross the line from one region to another the Pokemon levels can jump significantly. At one point I crossed a line where I went from facing level 12s at most to regularly facing level 15s, and I nearly had a loss there. To answer your question, Rachel, having a Pokemon faint does still mean a permanent loss for me, and so far I have had one. I switched a Deino into an ice type thinking the level difference was enough for her to survive the hit, and that turned out not to be true. Have you all dealt with any losses yet?

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Ouch, that hurts. I think Sword and Shield upped the ante a bit this time around when it comes to the catch rate and even the damage. I find that when I’m a few levels higher than my opponent, it’s still tricky to get their health down. In past games, it was an automatic one-hit KO and it’s not like that anymore. This isn’t a bad thing, but when it comes to doing a nuzlocke, it really adds to the challenge. Luckily for me, I haven’t had to deal with any losses… yet.

krismii
I really enjoy that, even when my Pokemon are a few levels higher than wild Pokemon, it’s still a challenge to take down your opponents. Unfortunately, I have had a few losses, a couple that actually happened one right after another. Having to deal with the loss of a potentially awesome Pokemon teammate and then trying to level up another Pokemon to take their place can be troublesome. In a regular game, I always do my best to not allow any of my Pokemon to faint for friendship purposes — and because these guys are my teammates! — so I’m absolutely disheartened about these few losses already. I’m also doing my best to not heal during battles, but it’s not a hard rule for me so who knows if I will do so in a pinch, haha! When the Nuzlocke Challenge first became a thing in the world, the only two rules were to nickname your Pokemon for a stronger bond, and fainted Pokemon are to be considered dead. That was it. Since then, there have been tons of modifications, new versions of the challenge, and extra rules to make the challenge even more difficult. Considering that, are there any other personal rules that you guys have instigated in your challenges?

MiiIan
The most common optional rule I bring in is the Dupes Clause – if I get a Pokemon I already received in a trade and kept previously, I retrade it until I get something new. For me, all the fun of a Wonderlocke would be out the window if I just had six Charmander on my team. What excites me most is the variety of interesting Pokemon I could encounter and use, so having a rule that helps forward that purpose is valuable for me.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Having the Duplicate Clause in effect is a good idea. I too have that rule in my own Nuzlocke right now. Though, I’m sure it would be challenging enough to have an entire team of Galarian Zigzagoon. Maybe someday, but for now, we thank you for joining us on the blog today, Ian. Good luck with your Wonderlocke and I’m sure we’ll do this again soon.

MiiIan
Thanks for having me, it was a lot of fun making my first ever Double Jump cameo!

krismii
We’re so glad we were finally able to make this cameo happen! Thank you again for joining us. If you want to check out more of Ian’s work, give his blog Adventure Rules some love and you can also check him out on Twitter!

What kind of nuzlocke have you done in the past? What are your personal rules? Let us know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Friday Favorites: Pokemon Challenges

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday!

Did everyone see the newest Let’s Go, Pikachu/Eevee! trailer? We’re super excited for these games! Honestly, we tend to get excited for most Pokemon games. The core series are some of our favorite games, but we’re always interested in switching up our playthroughs rather than the standard “become the very best” story lines. Here is a list of some of the challenges we like to do.

frifavespkmnchallenge

Nuzlocke

The Nuzlocke Challenges is a classic. The two most important rules are to only catch the first Pokemon you encounter in an area and to release any Pokemon that faints, for once it faints it is considered dead. A little morbid, perhaps, but it makes you think more about your choices. The next most popular rule is to nickname your Pokemon to help develop a stronger bond. The stronger your bond, the more it will hurt when your Pokemon dies.

One Pokemon Run

A one Pokemon run is exactly how it sounds. Pick a Pokemon and use only that Pokemon in battle. It will be a little difficult in the beginning, with the need to grind and obvious type differences, but it certainly is fun to demolish your opponents later in the game with your inevitably-overleveled Pokemon!

Type Specialist

Like many of the NPCs, this challenge is to focus on using just a type or two for your main team. With over a dozen different types Pokemon can be, there are plenty of combinations for different runs.

Color Run

A color run is when you plan your team of Pokemon around a color. Pokemon are categorized by color on Bulbapedia, and think of how pretty your team will look when they’re all coordinated by color!

Do you have a favorite Pokemon challenge?

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Friday Favorites: Pokemon Gym Puzzles

Double Jump Kris MiiHow was everyone’s week?

I’ve been playing more Pokemon lately, finding the series to be rather relaxing after a week of work. I prefer the regions with gym challenges rather than Alola, both for the challenging battles and the puzzles that some gyms had in order to reach the leader. This week is all about my favorite Pokemon Gym puzzles!

frifavespkmngympuzzles

Mahogany Gym (Johto)

Mahogany Gym is the Ice-type gym in the second generation of the Pokemon games. It has one of those classic ice-sliding puzzles where one misstep can mess you up. While the original Gold/Silver/Crystal trio had just one room of this puzzle, the HeartGold and SoulSilver remakes had three.

Vermilion Gym (Kanto)

Lt. Surge’s Electric-type gym was a fun puzzle in which there are two switches hidden in trash cans that the player needs to press in order to open up the electric doors that the gym leader is behind. While the switches are always adjacent, if you guess the second one incorrectly, the switches reset.

Fuchsia Gym (Kanto)

This Poison-type gym used invisible walls that you had to walk around in order to reach the gym leader. As a kid playing the original first generation games, I was a little frustrated with this gym until I realized that you could very faintly make out where the walls are. Nevertheless, it was a good challenge.

Mistralton Gym (Unova)

In Black and White, this gym uses freaking cannons to blast the player around the room. Your character is supposed to be, what, a young teen? I feel as if this gym would get sued for human injuries. In Black 2 and White 2, there are giant fans that blow the player around, and I’m not sure they’re much better. While not particularly challenging, this is probably one of the gym designs that I found the most amusing while playing!

What are your favorite Pokemon Gym puzzles? Or did you prefer the gyms that were straightforward and led you immediately to the gym leader?

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Friday Favorites: Wanted Pokemon Features

Double Jump Kris MiiIt’s November 18th, and here in the United States, Pokemon Sun and Moon are officially out!

No worries, there are no spoilers in this post (at least, not on purpose). While Rachel and I each have a version (thanks to Amazon’s pre-order option), I’m not planning on playing the game for another week. I also haven’t even played the demo, eager to keep the anticipation before really diving into the adventure. Here’s a short list of things that I would have loved to see in Sun and Moon.

3. Challenging Enemy Team

We’ve seen plenty of information on Team Skull of the Alola Region, and I’m sure they’ll be a good challenge like teams of previous games. However, most teams that we’ve encountered in past games all had the same general roster of Pokemon, usually Poison and Dark types. I’m hoping we’ll see much more variety in the battles against Team Skull.

2. Dark-Type Gym

I understand that Alola has trials rather than gyms, but I’m presuming that the trials will still have battles. Considering that the Dark-type, while having been featured in Elite Four battles, hasn’t had its own gym since its introduction in Generation II. It’d be awesome if the Dark-type got more love.

1. Walking Pokemon

 

I so miss the walking Pokemon concept from Pokemon Yellow, SoulSilver and HeartGold! I thought that feature was adorable, and it was great seeing your favorite Pokemon out in the overworld. Although I haven’t seen any evidence of it happening in the Alola regions, especially since Pokemon Amie seems to have replaced it, I would love to see it again in the future.

1/2. Pokemon Eclipse.

A third tier of Sun and Moon, named Stars, seems to be in the works for the Nintendo Switch. It’s reported that it’ll be like the previous third-tier games — similar to the first two versions of the generation but having special bonuses or an expanded story line. I honestly cannot wait for the third tier game, but I do believe that the game should be called Pokemon Eclipse rather than Stars, haha. It would make more sense, don’t you think?

What are some of your favorite features in the Pokemon games?

Challenge Unlocked: Luigi’s Mansion

Double Jump Game Review

krismii
Rachel and I had the bright idea to challenge each other to play a video game that we had never played before. For Rachel, I chose a game from the Fire Emblem series, while for me she originally chose Batman: Arkham Asylum. Unfortunately, our Xbox 360 didn’t like that idea, so Luigi’s Mansion stepped up to the plate.

rachmii
Kris has never played Luigi’s Mansion before. I have always wanted her to play, but she was never interested in it. So… How did you like it?

krismii
It wasn’t a bad game at all, but it was definitely more fun with someone there watching and enjoying the game with you. It isn’t something that I would play on my own.

rachmii
It was definitely funny watching you play. It was fun to know what you were supposed to do next when you didn’t have a clue. I liked watching you figure it out, even if the game is pretty straightforward.

krismii
I had a good idea as to what to do. From catching glimpses of you playing, I knew the general gist as to what I was supposed to do. That, and the keys showing up on the map above their doors definitely helped! I think I’m used to a bit more exploration in games and different sort of puzzles. Still, it wasn’t a bad game. The bosses were usually a good enough challenge (especially the final boss) and the 50 Boos challenge was fun.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Apparently there’s a lot more to the game after you beat. Such as you can go through the story mode again, but on hard mode. I’m sure that would be a fun challenge!

krismii
Yes, but one playthrough was enough for me. I was satisfied that I got a Rank B with all the money I vacuumed up! Playing as Luigi was fine, too, seeing as he was always one of our favorite underdogs, but a bit more development on his part would have been nice. It was funny seeing him as a scaredy-cat, but I thought it would be nice to see him shake a little less the more time went on or the more ghosts he vanquished.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
I don’t expect much development from Luigi because that’s who Luigi is. Plus, the story is kind of bland. Luigi has to rescue Mario. Aside from the gameplay, it’s pretty much the same as every other Mario game where Mario has to save Peach. So there’s not much room for character development. Luigi is a bit more confident in Dark Moon for the 3DS… Which I’ll have you play at some point as well.

krismii
That’s true, regarding Mario games. If you think about it, though, there aren’t many Mario games I really play, not on my own, anyway. The exception to that is Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, which has a much more involved storyline and character development. My favorite kind of games have a story I can be engrossed in as well as characters I can truly find myself caring about, like the Legend of Zelda series or Fire Emblem games. All in all, though, Luigi’s mansion was a good game, but it’s not near my favorite list. It was a good, different challenge, so thanks for recommending it!

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Hm. That is true. I always have to ask you to play Mario games with me. Luigi’s Mansion is old and can be a bit rough around the edges since it doesn’t play as a traditional Mario game, but it’s still one of my favorites. I’m glad I got to watch you play it and you didn’t absolutely hate it!

What about you? How do you like the game Luigi’s Mansion?

Friday Favorites: Zelda Bosses

Double Jump Kris MiiTGIF!

Everyone loves a good boss fight, and the Legend of Zelda series has an abundance of them! Listed below are a few of my favorite boss fights from a few of my favorite Zelda games.

Volvagia (Ocarina of Time)

This boss may or may not be on this list just because I enjoyed using the Megaton Hammer. The boss fight was a good one, and I definitely liked Volvagia’s design. Even though it’s not canon, I also liked his more tragic role in the Ocarina of Time manga.

Helmaroc King (The Wind Waker)

This beast of a bird was an awesome battle! I love the battles that have that sense of urgency, the kind where you have to keep moving in order to stay alive. The first part of this fight had us dashing up stairs, avoiding both the Helmaroc King and bokoblins before we emerged on the roof for a show-down with the bird. It helped that we also used the hammer weapon in this battle, too.

Vaati (Four Swords Adventures)

Four Swords Adventures is one of my favorite games to play with others, most notably Rachel because we make an awesome team, even if we do spend time making our characters annoy the hell out of each other. Vaati was a challenge for us, especially when Rachel hysterically kept falling down the pits in the room!

Stallord (Twilight Princess)

Another always-on-the-move boss fight, Stallord was a great challenge. The spinner was an interesting choice of weapon, and I remember getting a little frustrated with this boss fight. All in all though, it was definitely fun. I honestly can’t wait to see this bugger in the HD version of the game when I get it!

Ghirahim (Skyward Sword)

This dude is just insane! Absolutely fabulous, but also insane. He was one of the first major boss fights of the game and presented a challenge, but his cut-scenes and dialogue were also right up there on my list of favorites. (Especially his dancing near the end of the game when he’s using Zelda to revive his master!)

Who or what are some of your favorite (or least favorite) bosses?