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Pokémon Legends: Arceus

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Geez, I guess Serebii's line for spoiler hiding is whether it's shown by official channels or not.

Good thing I haven't checked that site today.

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Unsurprisingly, Japan gets the better trailer:

Spoiler

 

Love how the title is kind of clickbait for the trailer this time around. Such a strange marketing cycle! 

But anyways...the 360° video showing off Hisui is pretty cool! 

 

Edited by Julius

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Reviews out today/tomorrow (Wednesday), really interested to see how this has turned out. Vague reports seem to be extremely positive, though I can't help but suspect that might be compared to Pokemon's usual dated standards.

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12 hours ago, Ronnie said:

Reviews out today/tomorrow (Wednesday), really interested to see how this has turned out. Vague reports seem to be extremely positive, though I can't help but suspect that might be compared to Pokemon's usual dated standards.

It's funny, because I think we're going to see a very noticeable gap in scores between this and the review scores for Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl that wouldn't have been quite as drastic if these weren't releasing so close together? And not to mention being announced together in the same presentation? 

Pokémon has been tired in a myriad of ways for a long time (which I think is natural, given both a lack of ambition and competition), and I don't think it's at all a coincidence that the big gaming media outlets finally seemed to agree en masse that this was the case with BD & SP, with Legends: Arceus just on the horizon. 

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The moment of truth: reviews are live! 

Scoring very well:

 

Edited by Julius

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Except for IGN Italy who gave it a 5. 

I'm slowly reading the interview but skipping to the end they called out the story, mechanics and not enough evolution if I'm translating it correctly. 

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Setting aside the mega influential voice of video gaming IGN Italia :laughing:... very good reviews! I'll happily admit I seemed to be wrong about whether they could pull off a game like this.

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1 hour ago, Ronnie said:

Setting aside the mega influential voice of video gaming IGN Italia :laughing:... very good reviews! I'll happily admit I seemed to be wrong about whether they could pull off a game like this.

Hey I'm sure they have their place in the boot. 

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I was on the fence about picking this up but the positive reception has tipped me over the edge and I've put an order in. Don't think I'll get around to playing it this weekend but I'll hopefully get started on it next week.

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5 hours ago, Ashley said:

Except for IGN Italy who gave it a 5. 

I'm slowly reading the interview but skipping to the end they called out the story, mechanics and not enough evolution if I'm translating it correctly. 

Not enough water?

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Read a few reviews and it seems interesting. Looks like there's some QOL improvements and overall just a rethink of the franchise. 

It seems the focus is on catching/researching and less so battles which in context makes sense. It's unlikely but it would be interesting if we got to a point where there are two versions of the games going forward but rather than slightly different Pokémon being the primary differentiator instead there was one game focused on collecting and another on battling. 

In fact the only real negatives I'm seeing mentioned are graphics and to a lesser-extent animation (more so because there are good ones and then there's also 'turns 180⁰ on the spot through simple rotation') and honestly at this point I bake that into Game Freak games 🤷‍♂️

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11 hours ago, killthenet said:

I was on the fence about picking this up but the positive reception has tipped me over the edge and I've put an order in.

Same here! Wasn't really feeling it, but the positive reviews made me order it. Haven't read any reviews (but just glanced over the scores) to go in as fresh as possible.

8 minutes ago, Ashley said:

It seems the focus is on catching/researching and less so battles which in context makes sense. It's unlikely but it would be interesting if we got to a point where there are two versions of the games going forward but rather than slightly different Pokémon being the primary differentiator instead there was one game focused on collecting and another on battling.

They could make a more expansive Pokémon Stadium/Colosseum kind of game, that focusses on training and battling, and leave the whole adventuring part for the "other" main game.

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Yeah that's what I'm thinking. In a way it might be a smarter business move we most fans aren't going to buy both colours/letters/precious gems/weapons and just rely on trades but if someone does want both of those experiences they might be more likely. Maybe they could even stagger the release to give you time to build up a collection and then transfer it over (although you'd have to allow to not have to have both games to battle obviously). 

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3 hours ago, Ashley said:

It seems the focus is on catching/researching and less so battles which in context makes sense. It's unlikely but it would be interesting if we got to a point where there are two versions of the games going forward but rather than slightly different Pokémon being the primary differentiator instead there was one game focused on collecting and another on battling. 

 

3 hours ago, Dufniall said:

They could make a more expansive Pokémon Stadium/Colosseum kind of game, that focusses on training and battling, and leave the whole adventuring part for the "other" main game.

Yes, thank you! -- I've always thought the same, especially so since they got into paid-for subscription services like Bank and Home (and based on the story and setting of other franchises like Digimon, and especially Bakugan)!

I've always imagined an MMO-like place for battling where it's basically trainer central: play mini-games with others, fully own and customise your character with a regularly updated catalogue of clothing, heck multiplayer battles and events, trading, raid battles, etc., could all take place in thus one game/service (you could also them have massive celebrations around holidays and tie-in events for new releases).  This could also be the place with a profile kept for your tournament runs and competitive battling, as well as all of your Pokémon from Home, meaning that all of your Pokémon can be kept in this MMO-type game using a standardised animation set for battles that could be updated maybe once per generation in a big update (mostly for new moves, but tweaking the appearance of any new ones as required/desired)?

And assuming that Game Freak proper is mainly staying on the main games in such a hypothetical scenario, this would mainly be a third party endeavour, but there could be a a dedicated team for battle animations that works with both sides which basically doesn't need to be working on every title right now, which is one of the myriad of reasons for the increasingly limited number of Pokémon per game. The single player titles could have limited multiplayer functionality (i.e. any co-op modes exclusive to that title, local/online co-op only compatible with that game for battles and trading, etc.) but the bulk of the multiplayer and competitive experience could be kept to this one game/service. You could then also have the option when starting a new game to sync your profile with the new title so that your look from the outset in single player titles (skin colour, eye colour, hairstyle) is how you intend rather than having to wait until late-game to get the look you desire. 

I'll leave it there, because I've thought about it a lot and could go off on a huge tangent, but yeah, I totally agree. In terms of business they could have it be a subscription service (because £€$¥!!!), but every time a new single player title is released it could come with a code for a free month (or however long would be smart based on the metrics they surely have for the usual drop-off rate and timing on Pokémon titles). And yeah, you could absolutely just call it Pokémon Stadium Online -- sorry Phantasy Star for stealing your acronym!

Edited by Julius
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3 hours ago, Ashley said:

It seems the focus is on catching/researching and less so battles which in context makes sense.

This makes me feel like I will enjoy it more. I don't mind the battling but it's not my favourite part of the games.

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But how would the battle version work? How do you get the right Pokémon for battling without going out of your way to collect them? This way, the adventure version would be the main version and battling would be DLC... 

I do like the split, though, and I kind of wish they would ditch the dual release as it's not very consumer friendly and with online trading collecting the Pokémon from the other version has become trivial.

---

The guy running the website I work for has got the game (physically) for me at his office so once my son wakes up, I'm going to bike there to pick it up. Looking forward to it!

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Just now, MindFreak said:

But how would the battle version work? How do you get the right Pokémon for battling without going out of your way to collect them? This way, the adventure version would be the main version and battling would be DLC... 

Yeah that's what I've not figured out. If you have the collect game then sure you can transfer across, but if not there still needs to be some element of collecting so it may be moot. Unless you win Pokémon in battles, so if you prove yourself to a certain trainer/gym leader you get rewarded with either a specific Pokémon or a choice between similar ones. Think you do something like that to get Hitmonlee or Hitmonchan in the original games right? 

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5 minutes ago, Ashley said:

Yeah that's what I've not figured out. If you have the collect game then sure you can transfer across, but if not there still needs to be some element of collecting so it may be moot. Unless you win Pokémon in battles, so if you prove yourself to a certain trainer/gym leader you get rewarded with either a specific Pokémon or a choice between similar ones. Think you do something like that to get Hitmonlee or Hitmonchan in the original games right? 

Yeah. But that way, every player would have more or less the same Pokémon.

I guess what we really want is one version of the main game and then Pokémon Stadium where you can use the Pokémon you just collected in a ranked battle system. Or to make it more accessible, just have a Pokémon Stadium inside the main game where you take part in a series of battles. Which we had a couple of versions ago? (The battle subway and the battle frontier and the like, if I'm not mistaken). I just found that the entry for these "tournaments" where a bit too hard to find so I never really got started. It would also require knowledge about IVs and EVs but I guess that is made more accessible in the later games at least.

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In that regard Pokémon is a bit of a tricky franchise. On the one hand you have the kids and casual players who just enjoy the adventure, and don't care about competitive battling. On the other hand you have the hardcore userbase who battle competitive and have generations of well-trained Pokémon they want to keep on using. And with the franchise expanded to close to 900 Pokémon, plus new mechanics and movesets etc, I can see how they struggle to keep everyone happy and in balance.

Quote

How do you get the right Pokémon for battling without going out of your way to collect them?

Catch them in Pokémon Go. :p

Edited by Dufniall

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33 minutes ago, MindFreak said:

But how would the battle version work? How do you get the right Pokémon for battling without going out of your way to collect them? This way, the adventure version would be the main version and battling would be DLC... 

Like I said above, you could have a service-type, subscription-based game for battling which would essentially include Home (and actually give you a place to use those Pokémon instead of waiting around for the next time that they're available to be used in a game), where you can transport Pokémon to from the games and Go. Because let's be honest, I would struggle very hard these days to imagine anyone playing a hypothetical new Pokémon Stadium/Battle Revolution style game without having played any of the other games, so they'll already have caught Pokémon to use. 

Heck, just house the Battle Facilities in there too. People can then use rental Pokémon from the Battle Factory if they really don't have any Pokémon or want to try things out/swap things up. 

16 minutes ago, Dufniall said:

And with the franchise expanded to close to 900 Pokémon, plus new mechanics and movesets etc, I can see how they struggle to keep everyone happy and in balance.

Yeah, this is why I think an MMO-like, subscription-based game would probably work best. Keep battle animations consistent within the battle-based game, major updates for new Pokémon and mechanics, etc. 

Then if Game Freak wants to make crazy changes like culling Pokémon, reducing movepools, etc., they can do so in the single player game without it having a drastic impact retroactively by limiting what you can bring forwards. 

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Today, I learned that I seem to be the only one here who prefers the battling aspect to the collecting. (I'm really not gonna like this game, huh?)

Competitive battling being restrained to a monthly subscription is a sure fire way to get me to stop battling. I don't have the money for that. And that would bum me out to no end. I'm only able to keep it going these days because of @Dcubed's NSO family plan.

A separate Stadium-like game release would be much more appealing to me, but I'm the weird kind of guy who would actually buy it for the battles. The general audience bought Stadium because it let them see their Pokémon in 3D. It was novel at the time, but now that Pokémon games already do that anyway, it would be a much tougher sell today.

Hell, for all we know, Legends: Arceus could be a test run for a collecting-focused game and the next mainline game might be more focused on the battling aspect. Not sure how that would work, mind, you can't battle with Pokémon without first collecting them.

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I think you're underestimating how part of Stadium's desire was the multiplayer. Yes you could do that on the Gameboy but being about to sit around the TV and battle against your friends was a hell of a thing. 

I don't mind battling as a thing to do, but it can sometimes feel like it gets in the way when you're trying to mind your own business and Joey gets in the way. I'm aware things like Battle Tower exists for this, but it's all the battling you have to get through first. 

As someone else said maybe it would work as DLC as I'm sure from a story perspective it would work given the plot involves people not really collecting Pokémon* but I'm sure you'll show them the wonders and delights and start a trend.

 

*Which I guess makes this game take place before Conquest but it just doesn't feel like it should

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59 minutes ago, Glen-i said:

Today, I learned that I seem to be the only one here who prefers the battling aspect to the collecting.

I mean, I didn't pick a side :p 

To me personally I consider them equally and don't really prefer one over the other, they both have strengths but they also have some massive weaknesses which I think some other games have tackled better. If I had to choose, wanting to battle to gain experience points and to drive the story forwards is my preference, though, because I think it's a much easier way to drive things. 

Catching Pokémon: 99% of the time I'm interested in catching only when it comes to team building or catching certain cool Pokémon, but otherwise I've never really cared about catching them all to complete my Dex.

Battling: I didn't pay much attention to stats or IV's/EV's and the greater scope of battling until Gen VI, when it was made a bit more accessible and there wasn't much else to do in the post-game, because to be honest there's no need to. There's such a massive gap between the difficulty of battles in the main story when compared with the competitive scene that I can understand why it's daunting to many, and the games for a long time haven't been very accomodating when it comes to teaching you these things, because you can absolutely brute force your way through the main story of Pokémon games. Because of this I think that the games are great for getting to grips with the absolute basics of JRPG's (talking to everyone, exploring everywhere, battling everything you can), but teaches bad habits when it comes to more advanced things, such as battle technique (to be fair the same can also be said of Final Fantasy at times; Dragon Quest does this best, in my opinion). 

This is a very long-winded way of saying that you're all wrong. The most slept on thing when it comes to Pokémon is the potential for its worldbuilding and storytelling, and I've always felt this way, so to see them botch or gloss over it again and again pains me. Personally, I really think that potential greatly overshadows any talk about the mechanics in the games.

Legitimately all they need to do is hire a competent JRPG writer. Okay, that's an oversimplification, but you catch my drift! 

1 hour ago, Glen-i said:

Competitive battling being restrained to a monthly subscription is a sure fire way to get me to stop battling. I don't have the money for that. And that would bum me out to no end.

To be fair, it's not ideal - I think ideally it would be free, honestly. The only reason I don't think it would be if such a hypothetical game existed would be because there's more money to be made through a subscription, and because it would make sense for currently paid-for services like Home to be included as part of the package. 

1 hour ago, Glen-i said:

Hell, for all we know, Legends: Arceus could be a test run for a collecting-focused game and the next mainline game might be more focused on the battling aspect.

See, I don't think Legends: Arceus is a sign that they're going one way or the other next with the next mainline game(s); I legitimately think it was the only way they could make a Monster Hunter-styled "open world" title, which I firmly believe is what they wanted to do.

I fully expect the next mainline game(s) to build off the foundations of Legends: Arceus, not in terms of being goal-driven in the way that catching Pokémon is, but making things more open, growing from Monster Hunter zones to something a bit bigger (I always come back to taking some inspiration from Dragon Quest XI and Xenoblade Chronicles when it comes to this)...which can be done well, it just won't be, because of the reasons we've all discussed before. 

22 minutes ago, Ashley said:

As someone else said maybe it would work as DLC as I'm sure from a story perspective it would work given the plot involves people not really collecting Pokémon* but I'm sure you'll show them the wonders and delights and start a trend.

 

*Which I guess makes this game take place before Conquest but it just doesn't feel like it should

In Legends: Arceus in particular? They could add some more battling in DLC for sure, maybe some Trials-type thing tacked on or, you know, that thing that always happens in the anime but rarely happens in the games: a good old-fashioned tournament arc, damn it! 

I fully expect DLC for this game, and would love some more battles, obviously assuming we haven't been hoodwinked and that there aren't actually that many in the game to begin with. The additional content for Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl is clearly just going to be the Mythical Event Pokémon, and with this coming out in January, I don't think there's a chance that they'd have something else in store for the holiday season except DLC: ILCA, if hired again, will probably need until at least Spring 2023 to turn something around (assuming it's another remake); and I think Game Freak are going to be turning most of their attention towards the next mainline game(s) after this. 

Man, I hope this means we see more spin-off titles this year. 

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31 minutes ago, Julius said:

This is a very long-winded way of saying that you're all wrong. The most slept on thing when it comes to Pokémon is the potential for its worldbuilding and storytelling, and I've always felt this way, so to see them botch or gloss over it again and again pains me. Personally, I really think that potential greatly overshadows any talk about the mechanics in the games.

Yes, we all want PMD quality plot in mainline Pokémon games. Hell, I'd settle for Black/White quality.

48 minutes ago, Julius said:

To be fair, it's not ideal - I think ideally it would be free, honestly. The only reason I don't think it would be if such a hypothetical game existed would be because there's more money to be made through a subscription, and because it would make sense for currently paid-for services like Home to be included as part of the package.

See, Home isn't that much of a deal-breaker for me, because I only use the free version for transferring purposes, and if the time comes when I can finally get my Greninja out of Alola, then I can just pay for a month. I'm concerned that with a hypothetical package deal would encourage TPC to make Home less "free".

1 hour ago, Julius said:

In Legends: Arceus in particular? They could add some more battling in DLC for sure, maybe some Trials-type thing tacked on or, you know, that thing that always happens in the anime but rarely happens in the games: a good old-fashioned tournament arc, damn it!

Funny that you crave that, since Sword/Shield just did this.
That said, I would put with any nonsense this game threw at me if it meant that we got PWT 2.0.

1 hour ago, Julius said:

Man, I hope this means we see more spin-off titles that aren't free-to-play rubbish this year. 

Fixed that for you.

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This game is not for small kids. XD I just went through the first hour of the game and it is just text box after text box! Then we are finally let free in the first wild area and boy, I got attacked a lot. I then let my 4 y.o. son take the controller as he has been going on and on during the introduction "Is it my turn now? Can I play now?" (there was literally no real playing during that time) and he went straight into some angry Pokémon and almost got himself killed (or black out'ed).

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