The end of 2019 was pretty good in the sense I spent most of my time playing Pokemon Shield. Aside from knowing the baby starter Pokemon (not their evolutions) and a handful of other Pokemon, I didn’t know what to expect from brand new Pokemon going in. And that’s the way I like it. I was pleasantly surprised at the new Pokemon and love so many of the new designs.
I absolutely love turtles. They’re one of my favorite animals. When I first saw Chewtle, my heart melted. He looks tough but he’s just a small, adorable guy with an abnormally large head. He’s slow too, which makes camping all the more fun. If you call him from afar, you’ll be sitting there for a few minutes while he happily “runs” toward you.
I enjoy all the evolution forms of Scorbunny. However, its final evolution is awesome. Cinderace looks like the older brother type for the rest of the Pokemon on my team. His clothes are awesome, he has a cool stance, and I love his animations when he attacks – especially with Pyro Ball because it looks like he’s playing soccer and it looks cool.
I’ve never met a fire type Pokemon I didn’t like. I didn’t have Carkol on my team because I already had Scorbunny, but the Rolycoly line looks amazing. Out of the three evolutions, Carkol, the middle, is my favorite design. I like how he’s a minecart. I think it’s pretty clever.
I’ll be honest. I haven’t trained too many “fish” Pokemon. I normally get a water Pokemon before you get the fishing rod in the game. You can fish right away in Sword and Shield, though I didn’t realize that at first. I didn’t have a Barraskewda on my team, but I enjoy the design of the Pokemon. I think it’s pretty cool how they made its fins and tail act as motor propellers as though it’s a boat.
Have we had a penguin Pokemon before? I can’t think of one at the top of my head and I’m too lazy to look through all 890 Pokemon to find a penguin. While Eiscue looks a bit odd with a block of ice for a head, I think it’s out of the box which makes it pretty cool overall. Not to mention, now they have plenty of opportunities to make other penguin Pokemon – macaroni penguins, baby penguins, emperor penguins, and more.
What are some of your favorite new designs for the Galar region? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.
I’ve been playing Pokemon Shield almost non-stop. I’ve almost completed the Pokedex and am prepping to begin a new journey in Pokemon Sword. I love the game if you couldn’t tell. Here are some of my favorite new features from it.
The Wild Area
I guess this is kind of a given, but the Wild Area is such a cool place. I lost so many hours in this part of the map even before I beat the game. There’s just so much to do even if you can’t do it all right away. Seeing Pokemon wander around in and out of the grass but have different strengths depending on where they appear are cool. I also like the fact that most of the Pokemon live in harmony in the Wild Area. It almost feels like a reserve (despite us all barging in there to catch them all) and it’s awesome to see so many species in one place, yet they stick to their own biomes.
No, the weather isn’t new, per se. And yes, this is another feather of the Wild Area. I enjoyed how vast the Wild Area is that each section has its own weather. Depending on what weather you have, different Pokemon appear. Even a gym leader uses weather as a battling tactic which was interesting. Other than having a specific type, the gym leaders never really had too many “strats.” The weather was fun to work around and counter.
Okay, they finally did it. They upped their game when it comes to playing with your Pokemon. I enjoyed Pokemon Aime but seeing them actually walk around, engage with one another (and you), and play, the Pokemon Camp is awesome. I could spend hours in there with my team and everyone in my box. I love watching them race each other (poor Drednaw and Eldegoss are so slow compared to Cinderace and Boltund).
In addition, you get to cook for them. It’s not exactly my favorite thing to do, but I enjoy watching the Pokemon eat and it’s always great to give them a boost in experience points or heal them.
I know this isn’t exactly a “feature” but I needed to talk about the character development. Every Pokemon game is the same. There’s a bad guy team that wants to steal Pokemon and take over the world. It’s up to you, a child, to stop it all. There wasn’t any of that (for the most part). Every character – your rivals, gym leaders – all had their own stories. By the end of the game, they all had an ending to their story or a new beginning. It was great. I wasn’t just invested in the Pokemon and the gameplay, I was invested in the characters. No, there wasn’t much of a story, but there was still more to the game than just Pokemon battles and I thought that was really cool.
What are your favorite parts of Pokemon Sword & Shield? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.
Title: Pokemon Sword & Pokemon Shield Publisher: Nintendo Developer: GAME FREAK, Inc.
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Category: Role-Playing, Adventure
Release Date: November 15, 2019
How we got the game: We pre-ordered both games
We were wicked excited for Sword and Shield to finally come out on the Switch! To have another core Pokemon series game, one in a new region, was fantastic. Despite some of the backlash that was seen on the Internet, we always had faith that we would enjoy the games.
I was extra excited about this game because there weren’t too many spoilers on what the new Pokemon looked like. I was able to go into this game fresh.
Like most Pokemon core games, Sword and Shield have the typical gameplay formula. As the avatar character, you explore the region while catching and battling with the Pokemon you encounter. The routes and towns are usually diverse with different Pokemon and people for the avatar to interact with, with opponents getting stronger the further in the game you go. Moving is intuitive with the analog stick — and you can make your character spin around and strike a pose! — and speaking with people and most general interactions are simply with the A button.
The major point of Pokemon is to explore the world and “catch ‘em all.” Sword and Shield don’t disappoint in that regard. I honestly felt as though the Galar Region is more of an “open-world” in some cases. For example, the Wild Area is a new feature added in this game. The Wild Area stretches for most of the Galar map and it’s where just about every Pokemon imaginable lives. The Wild Area has different areas from snow to desert to grasslands and more. It’s easy to stay there for long periods of time and not progressing with the actual gameplay.
The Wild Area is also where it’s easiest to connect with fellow players. While there may be lag depending on the servers and the strength of your Internet, it’s awesome to see so many other trainers zipping about the world. Talking to one another usually nets you free items, mostly for curry in the Pokemon Camp, which we’ll get to in a minute. You can also trade and battle one another, as well as battle with each other in what’s called Max Raid battles against special wild Pokemon.
Pokemon have the ability to Dynamax in Sword and Shield. It’s the new Mega Evolution and Z-Move. Dynamaxing enlarges the Pokemon to about ten-times its size and gives them all-powerful moves depending on what they’ve already learned. However, you can only Dynamax in certain areas – like gym battles and max raids, for example.
Admittedly, we weren’t sure about this game mechanic when it was first introduced. It sounded a little gimmicky, like the mentioned Mega Evolutions and Z-Moves from the sixth and seventh generations, respectively. Keeping the Dynamax technique to certain areas, though, made it a bit more special and exciting to use, especially in the gym battles. It works out pretty well and even makes you use a bit of strategy in that Pokemon can only Dynamax for three turns in gym battles.
I really enjoy the graphics on the Switch consoles themselves, and Sword and Shield were no exception. Our avatars actually get expressions this time around, and the animations of the Pokemon and other characters were great. The open world-like Wild Area and several towns of the Galar region were just absolutely beautiful!
I love how our characters actually have expressions. Knowing the sort of graphics that can be on the Nintendo Switch, I feel like Pokemon could improve a bit. However, I love it just the way it is because it’s how Pokemon is. The characters always moved in a certain way that screams “Pokemon”. As for the new Pokemon in this region? I absolutely love all the new designs. I think the Pokemon are really unique and outside the box. (Even though Galarian Meowth and Perrserker look like they belong in Where The Wild Things Are.)
Anyone who’s played these games and said they did not enjoy the gym battle themes are liars. The battle themes were definitely my favorite tunes, but hearing all the background music as you traveled through the region was also wonderful. They were familiar and new at once, familiar in the sense that you knew the music was from a Pokemon game, but new for the Galar region itself.
Any music from Pokemon – songs, sound effects, Pokemon cries – is fantastic. Sword and Shield were no exception and I agree with Kris. The gym battle themes were the best. Coupled with the cheering crowd in the background, it made it all the better. It really hyped me up.
The typical storyline of most core Pokemon games is that your avatar journeys throughout their home region on a quest to “catch ‘em all” and “be the very best.” Sword and Shield are similar, in which there is a Gym Challenge for trainers to partake in. With their teams of Pokemon, trainers challenge all eight gyms in an attempt to participate in the Pokemon League or, in this duo of games, the Champion’s Cup.
On the flip side, while you journey around the world, you typically have to stop an evil group of Pokemon trainers with a fancy (or not-so-fancy) name who wants to dominate the world or steal Pokemon or what have you. Surprisingly enough, this isn’t the case in Sword and Shield. There is a bad guy team called Team Yell, yes, but they’re not bad in the way you’d assume them to be.
Sword and Shield do have a bit of lore behind them, with part of the story involving the region’s professor’s assistant (well, granddaughter) looking into the history of the Galar region itself. Involving two ancient heroes, one with a sword and one with a shield, and what was called the Darkest Day, you try to help unravel the mystery of why the lives of the heroes are not known more.
The story of the game doesn’t come together full-force until the very end of the main gameplay. The game itself is quick because of this and then it all comes together at the end. To avoid spoilers, I won’t say too much else other than I enjoyed how they did it this time around.
While Sword and Shield have a fairly linear plot to follow, the replayability value lies in all the Pokemon you can tame and battle with. Considering there’s hundreds of Pokemon to find in the game, and a huge community to trade with, replaying the game with a new team every time helps to keep the plot fresh.
This is certainly a game I’ll go back to quite often, like all the other Pokemon games. I will be sure to reach level 100 with my Pokemon, catch them all, and hunt for shinies. I’m in this for the long haul.
Pokemon Sword & Pokemon Shield gets… 4 out of 5 lives.
Have you played this game? What did you think? Let us know in the comments!
Pokemon Sword & Shield are getting closer to being released. We have a little over two months left to go and they’re still talking about new mechanics and features of the game.
First off, these games are going to have 18 gyms. After Sun and Moon where there weren’t any gyms at all, I’m excited to get back into the gym battles. To make it even better, instead of having the eight gym badges and then moving onto the Elite Four and Champion, there will be 18 gyms to go through – one for every Pokemon type. Apparently, the gyms are split between the major leagues and the minor leagues and I don’t know if you need to go through them all in order to reach the Champion (assuming there is one) or if you can pick and choose. Me, personally, I’d love to battle them all and collect 18 badges (assuming there are badges).
I’m mainly excited about this because the types for the gyms and Elite Four have been so uneven over the years. I made a list of how many times each type is the main for a gym battle or Elite Four member or Champion and it’s crazy uneven. Champions and Elite Four members tend to favor Ice and Dragon types and, of course, even though Dark was introduced in Johto, it has never had itd own gym. Three different Elit Four members have mained in Dark, but there are no Dark gym badges. Fairy got its own gym when it was introduced in the Alola region, but that’s the only time it’s appeared.
I think it’ll be cool to have a gym battle for each type this time around.
People have been talking about this one a decent amount. There will be an auto-save feature in the game. While I think this is a good idea, I’m happy there will be an option to turn it off. Supposedly, “it’ll constantly save the game” and I like to save before gym battles or if I’m searching for a certain Pokemon. If I try to catch a legendary and miss it, I just reset my game and try again. If it saves after a battle and I missed catching a Pokemon, I’m going to be pretty sad about that.
Still, I do think it’s a good idea to have the option to auto-save, just in case.
In Let’s Go, Pikachu and Let’s Go, Eevee, there’s no EXP share. If you have Pokemon in your party, they automatically get EXP for every catch or battle. It seems as though that will be the case for Sword and Shield as well. I don’t really mind this, though I have turned the EXP share on and off in the past in case one or two of my Pokemon get a few levels ahead of everyone else. There’s no word on whether this will be able to get turned off or not but it’ll be there.
How much are you looking forward to Pokemon Sword and Shield? Are you excited to have 18 gyms? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.
New Pokemon have been discovered in the Galar region and… I have to say, after the Alola region, I’m not all that surprised at what they showed.
I’m only going to talk about the new Pokemon and not the people they announced mostly because I care more about the Pokemon than I do the people. I have more opinions on the Pokemon anyway.
This may be the Pikachu-look-a-like for this region. It’s known as the two-sided Pokemon (though it’s a mouse, let’s be real) and it has two forms: Full Belly and Hangry. When Morpeko uses it’s energy and becomes hungry, it changes it’s colors and type from yellow-electric to purple-dark.
I think this is pretty cool and it will really add to the strategy of Pokemon battles since you’re working with two types, though not necessarily together. It reminded me of Wishiwashi from the Alola region, except WishiWashi’s type didn’t change at all. I’ll be curious to try out Morpeko on my team.
Okay. They did this for Alola. It confused me then and it confuses me now. I understand that the same Pokemon who live in different regions will change and adapt to the living conditions, but I’d prefer to have all brand-new Pokemon.
Our Kanto friend, Weezing, has a new form and it reminded me of Exeggutor’s Alolan form with the long neck. Now Weezing seems to have a chimney on top its head resembling a top hat and what seems to look at like a mustache made out of smoke. I’m assuming they did this because of the response Exeggutor got. I’m not dissing the design at all, though it’s not something I would have chosen.
Weezing is now Poison/Fairy, which I feel like it should be Poison/Dark… I don’t know, I look at Weezng and see “pollution.” Also, Koffing wasn’t shown. I assume, as the pre-evolution of Weezing, Koffing will have a similar Galarian form, but who knows?
Zigagoon & Linoone
Two normal Pokemon from the Hoenn region are in the Galar region and they’re not just normal, but they’re also dark and look like they’ve been to one too many rock concerts. Like Weezing, I don’t mind the design, but I’ve always had a certain image of these two Pokemon in my head. Seeing the fangs and tongues hanging out, makes me question all that. These two just don’t seem like the same Pokemon I fell in love with while in the Hoenn region. I’ll still give them a try though, of course. Same with Weezing.
I’ve been hoping to see some new evolutions of some Pokemon – namely Eevee. They announced one new evolution for Linoone, which is cool, but it’s only for the Galarian form.
This looks like a cool Pokemon. Being Dark/Normal like its pre-evolutions, I think Obstgoon will be a force to be reckoned with. I’d love to see Obstagoon as though it was originally from the Hoenn region, mostly because I’m curious to see how different it would look.
Though, I understand why. The Pokedex states that due to survival and living conditions, Zigagoon and Linoone are having a life crisis, hence Obstgoon being born. Which makes me a bit sad because they have harsh living conditions while Weezing looks polluted… the Galar region looked so nice when they first showed it off.
Needless to say, I’m intrigued now more than ever.
What do you think of the new Pokemon? Are you still excited for Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield? Let us know about them in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.
Like a couple of weeks ago, this Friday’s Favorites post is dedicated to a wish list. With Nintendo’s latest Pokemon direct, there is so much speculation and hope about the newest Pokemon games coming out, Sword and Shield. Here is what I wish to see in the games.
I have no idea how plausible this is. However, when the Let’s Go duo was released and boasted a co-op mode, Rachel and I were disappointed at it. Granted, it was fun seeing another trainer run around with you in the over world and help out with battles, but it wasn’t what we expected or wanted. I would love to see a co-op mode where your trainer is exploring and battling on their own, but your friend’s trainer is still there in the over world doing their own thing as well. I want to experience the journey with my friend’s avatar there beside mine, even if all we get is just seeing the other avatar running around. Of course, granting us the option to do double-battles together, each with our own Pokemon, against NPCs would be awesome. We’re able to go online with Smash and Mario Kart together — why not Pokemon? (Or would this be too close to a Pokemon MMORPG?)
Pokemon Following the MC
I don’t remember seeing Pokemon following the main characters around in Sword and Shield’s footage from the direct. I understand that not all the footage was from the game and the game itself wouldn’t be finalized just yet, so I’m remaining optimistic that they keep the option of having your Pokemon follow you around as you explore the region. It was adorable, fun, and since random battles seem to be back rather than over world Pokemon, it’ll help the game seem more alive.
A Good Story
I want to be completely invested in the plot line of Sword and Shield’s adventure. I’m sure it’ll boil down to the world needs to be saved by your young MC, but still. Give me a story to truly care about. I adored the story lines involving the regions’ legendaries in the earlier generations, especially Johto and Hoenn, and I severely miss the extra oomph that the stories received in the third-tier games. Speaking of which…
A Third Game
This is obviously a long way off, but I would love it if Nintendo went back to bolstering the story lines of the games with a third game for the region. Crystal and Emerald were some of my favorites and I was seriously disappointed that Black 2 and White 2 existed instead of Pokemon Gray for the Unova region. Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon didn’t bring much of anything new to the Alola region, and poor Kalos was skipped out entirely when a plot line involving Zygarde could have been created to balance out X and Y. I’m hoping Sword and Shield will break the trend of “sequel” games for the Galar region and give us a more in-depth story with a third Galar game.
Are you looking forward to Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield? What are you hoping for in the new Pokemon generation? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.
The Pokemon Direct on Wednesday morning was only about 7 minutes long, but we have yet to see too many complaints about it. All things considered, I was pleased with what I saw of the Generation 8 Pokemon games. Pretty sure one of my favorite parts of it was the reveal that gyms would be returning!
I have to admit, I was expecting generation eight reveals, but I was also thinking there would be other announcements. I’m certainly not complaining though! What they showed off of the Galar Region was amazing. The world looks beautiful and yes, I’m eager to collect badges again.
The graphics definitely look gorgeous on the Switch, and the world itself looks so much more detailed than the Let’s Go titles. The character designs look fun — I was really amused at how large the male character’s backpack was! The starters themselves look cute. I’ll definitely be going with Grookey, since I usually go for the Grass-type starters anyway. Sobble looks adorable, though!
All the main starters are adorable. I’m excited to have a bunny as the fire-type! I’m super curious as to what they’re final evolution and typing will be. I’m also looking forward to finding out more information about the legendary Pokemon. For the titles Sword and Shield, I don’t know what they’ll do. I have a feeling they’ll be wolf-like though, of course.
Think the Scorbunny will end up being Fire and Fighting type? One of the things that Alola had in its favor was the secondary typing of the starters’ final evolutions. Ghost, Dark, and Fairy were great, but it would be interesting to have other, unique secondary types for the starters. The titles Sword and Shield are awesome and I’m hoping they have a fun story and plotline to go along with them. I’m totally up for canine-like legendaries!
I don’t know, I feel like they’ve had so many Fire/Fighting Pokemon, especially for the starters. For some reason, Scorbunny looks like it could be Fire/Electric. Grookey maybe Grass/Ground and Sobble Water/Bug. I honestly would love to see opposite types together. I know it won’t happen with Sword & Shield (if at all) but I think it’d be cool to have starters that are Fire/Water, Water/Grass, Grass/Fire. But now I’m rambling – anyway, canine legendaries would be awesome. I wonder if it’ll be two versions of a similar Pokemon (kind of like Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres) or if they’ll somehow be different (like Solgaleo and Lunala). But both looked like they were wolves or something.
Oh, I know, I’m joking. I’m convinced that Incineroar, with its design, was originally going to be Fire/Fighting, but so many people were sick of that typing that they changed it to Fire/Dark. Ground is starting to be a bit overused with the Grass starters, but there’s not many Water/Bug types. Going back to Sword and Shield, I wonder if the legendary Pokemon and the story itself will have some sort of medieval angle. I think the logos of the games remind me of crests from royal families or knights. Generation 5’s story played with a royal family angle, didn’t it?
Ground is starting to get overused with Grass, I agree. But Grookey’s coloring reminds me of Grass/Ground. Grass/Rock would be cool too. A medieval angle would be cool. I mean, the story will more or less be the same as all the other Pokemon games, I think. I was surprised to see the Galar map. It’s long and seems like the journey will be fairly linear. Which isn’t a bad thing, but it’s definitely different than before.
Grass/Rock would be interesting. I miss the Grass/Poison typing that Venusaur has, admittedly. Yes, I’m sure the story will involve some team or other trying to take over or change the world while using Pokemon, and the fate of the world will rest on the shoulders of our pre-teen protagonist. Still, I hope the lore of the region is well done. If the lore is well done enough, I would absolutely love it if the region got a third game. I wasn’t thrilled with the “sequels” of Black 2/White 2 and Ultra Sun/Ultra Moon — we should have gotten a Gray and Eclipse for those regions, respectively. We also totally missed out on another game for the Kalos region. There should have been a Pokemon Z for Zygarde. I suppose those are a bit of a ways off, though. For now, I’m definitely looking forward to Sword and Shield.
I totally agree. We should have had third installments for Unova, Kalos, and Alola. I understand they want to make more money, but I think they have plenty and the third volumes are what people seem to really enjoy. Here’s hoping to Pokemon Armor when the time comes! In the meantime, I can’t wait for Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield… late 2019 most likely means November. It’ll be here before we know it.
What did you think of Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield? Let us know in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.