Pokemon Legends: Arceus Review

For over Two decades, the formula for Pokemon games has remained mostly exactly the same and it has definitely become stale. You play like a preteen who are able to take on the impossible. You somehow have the ability to best every gym leader in Pokemon battles, fend off notorious crime syndicates better than the local police department, and become the favourite name inside your region by defeating the Elite Four. That’s where Pokemon Legends: Arceus comes in. Farmville almost entirely ditches that stale formula and requires a bold new direction in narrative and gameplay. This shakes in the franchise for that better, but not without some drastically scrimp.

Pokemon Legends: Arceus tells a different story. You assume charge of an individual within their mid-teen years that has mysteriously fallen from this space-time rift in the sky. This really is loosely explained in the opening cutscene where the legendary Pokemon, Arceus (or as the locals think of it as “Almighty Sinnoh), modifies what looks to be your smartphone and beams you into the past. As the overdone trope of your time travel is a little an inexpensive method to create a prequel for Diamond and Pearl, what lies ahead is probably the largest breath of outdoors we have gotten for the franchise in decades.

“Look for all Pokemon, and thou shalt find me once again.”

Arceus’ final quote before sending you to a primitive era of the Sinnoh region sets the idea of what’s in the future. This isn’t a game title that requires you to possess the strongest Pokemon to battle the right path through countless trainers to attain superstar status. The main goal of farmville would be to complete what is possibly Pokemon’s first Pokedex ever. You’ll explore the vast Hisui region to survey, interact, and catch over 200 different species of Pokemon in sectioned cases of large, explorable areas.

It may seem just like a large amount of boring focus on paper to simply catch a lot of Pokemon and record your findings, but it’s more than that. When you’re in the various biomes from the Hisui region, you’ll have the ability to run into Pokemon freely roaming these sectioned areas. The days are gone from the annoying random encounters while walking through patches of grass. The days are gone of stocking on Repellants to obtain from one point to another. Zubat and Geodude spamming in caves are now a thing of history and good riddance.

We’ll certainly be able to go up and encounter Pokemon once we please, of course for surveying and survival purposes. Pokemon Legends: Arceus adds a new way to interact with wild Pokemon than just battling them with your personal. You’re in a time where people don’t necessarily coexist with Pokemon yet. Actually, people are greatly afraid of them, and only a select group of people are tasked to handle them.

In previous games when you’d encounter a Pokemon within the wild, you usually drew out the first Pokemon on hand to fight. When it comes to Legends: Arceus, encountering Pokemon can either result in two outcomes: they’ll either attack you head-on or be startled and run away. This adds a layer of excitement which i had not felt inside a Pokemon game for more than ten years. These Pokemon won’t wait for you to throw one out to battle for you. You will get eviscerated with a Snorlax’s body slam or get the internals fried by a Luxray’s electric attacks when you get too bold and careless.

You because the Surveyor (not trainer) need to make the decision on whether or not you can approach a Pokemon to trap or battle. What’s even more fascinating is that you’re not somebody that hides behind their Pokemon to prove potency and efficacy. In this game, you have more free control of your character, so that you can do such things as run, crouch, and even dodge roll (because you don’t wish to have a Fire Blast to the face from a wild Growlithe).

As mentioned earlier, Pokemon Legends: Arceus is placed inside a much more primitive time, dating back a period where things like digital screens and electronics are a foreign concept to the people of the town you get a permanent lodging in. Talking about the townsfolk and other recurring characters in the game, there are lots of notable characters who, if you have played many of the mainline Pokemon games prior to this, are the ancestors of these faces in the earlier games.

For example, Captain Cyllene from the Survey Corps is an obvious in accordance with her descendant, Cyrus, from Pokemon Diamond and Pearl. Other notable characters include Captain Zisu, who serves as the game’s move tutor. She will be associated with Sinnoh’s Elite Four Flint. She's red hair and an unwavering fighting spirit, much like her descendant. There are many other people you’ll meet in the Hisui region who will be similar to other people who weren’t even just in your fourth generation of Pokemon!

Since farmville is placed inside a more primitive time, commodities like Pokecenters and Pokemarts between areas are nonexistent. You have the main campsite where one can rest, change your Pokemon from boxes, and manage your inventory via crafting. Legends: Arceus adapts more of a traditional RPG game where the player needs to be a little more careful with their inventory and the dangers that await from these safe-havens.

You can’t just enter places waving cash around to maintain stocks of items. Instead, you’ll need to scour areas for recycleables to craft such things as Poke Balls, potions, and bait. This can be a mechanic that appeals to the Monster Hunter fan in me. To optimize your chances of which makes it to camp safely and completing your research missions, make use of survival tactics together with your environment. This detaches from the linearity presented in past Pokemon games.

There’s a larger payout for people who walk off the beaten path as it ought to be for that curious player in these kinds of games. You’re within an era in which the way of living emulates those of indigenous people before colonialism. People are more in tune with nature and also the environment around them. You don’t have this sophisticated technology (other than your Arc Phone) that makes your way of life easier.

The survival and staple mechanics of RPGs add new life to the Pokemon formula, but you will find facets of it that still remain, specifically its combat. Those that remain have been modified to create a a lot more exciting and streamlined way of playing.

The battle system has received a significant overhaul that contributes another layer of strategy that I hope turns into a staple for the next mainline entries to come. Pokemon Legends: Arceus’ battle system retains exactly the same turn-based mechanics as every Pokemon game, however with a modified attack twist.

Every move that a Pokemon performs within this game can be used in 3 ways. The very first is only a typical move being used, like Flamethrower. A Pokemon that uses Flamethrower may also perform it within the Agile style, which can make the move slightly weaker, but give priority to attacking in future turns. Then your Strong style increases the base power of the move and can hinder attack priority in later turns. Using a move in either style uses up 2 PP instead of just one from a normal attack.

Outside of battle, the whole grindy nature of the game continues to be vastly decreased. EVs and IVs (Effort Values and Individual Values) no longer are things to spend hours and hours grinding for. When you catch a Pokemon, the only deciding factors to determine their strengths and weaknesses are their natures and Effort Levels. These can be modified easily, eliminating the luck factor in locating the ideal Pokemon.

The only real random factors you’ll need to bother about now are shiny Pokemon and also the new Alpha Pokemon. The latter Alpha Pokemon are new types of Pokemon that just appear in this region. They’re basically giant versions of normal Pokemon, oftentimes with greater stats. They are so fun to encounter in the wild because they feel like field bosses in traditional RPGs. Alpha Pokemon are drastically higher in level when compared with nearby Pokemon. They’re a lot more menacing as their eyes glow red and they've a tendency to attack the player when alerted.

One final thing about the gameplay of Pokemon Legends: Arceus is its interesting boss battle mechanics against the Noble Pokemon. Not to jump into a lot of spoilers, you’ll face Noble Pokemon who'll throw a number of attacks to you in which you’ll have to dodge them. In addition, you’ll throw balms of specially crafted items to lower their health bars. When you deal enough harm to them, you’ll need to send one of your Pokemon in a traditionally styled battle. Once that concludes, you’ll shift in to the next phases in which the difficulty increases.

People will compare these instances to other games like Dark Souls. You’ll be using that dodge button a lot and awaiting an opportunity to attack what seems like an incredibly tough opponent. That part might be true, but these boss battles are pretty straight forward enough so that players can comprehend the movement and attack patterns of those bosses. They’re also not punishing when they find themselves being defeated through the said Noble Pokemon.

In the reinvented imagining of a Pokemon game, Pokemon Legends: Arceus mostly nails it. It’s compelling and actually exciting to explore the vast lands in Hisui to essentially “catch ‘em all.” But this is how a few of the game’s faults start to lie. The foundation is laid for any brand new method to explore Pokemon moving forward, but oftentimes, the lands can be uninspiring, limiting, and often feeling barren.

I just wish there was a little more to really encapsulate what these biomes have to offer when it comes to Pokemon species roaming about. The possible lack of a far more full world seems like it must do with poor people optimization and graphical limitations. Farmville isn't the most graphically advanced, to place it lightly.

There are games with larger open worlds as well as instanced free-roam areas like The Legend of Zelda: Breath from the Wild and Monster Hunter Rise that have more going on in their respective playable areas. Those games look much better than this and they’re older exclusive Switch titles.

This is to start to see these scrimp. The entire joke this game “has worse graphics than the usual Gamecube game” does, unfortunately, ring a bit true here. That isn’t to state farmville looks bad all the time, in fact, you will find moments where it looks really pretty. This is just the case with regards to certain cutscenes and also the animations in traditional Pokemon battles, however.

These cut corners will also be present when it comes to human interactions from the slightest bit. When you’re at dinner with Rei/Akari and Professor Laventon, you don’t actually see everyone enjoy their potato mochi. The screen cuts to black. This is actually the case for nearly everything else too. Game Freak really cheaped on animations of human interactions. Probably the most you’ll see are the facial expressions on people. Everything else just fades to black, even such things as people running during a cutscene.

The Verdict

Pokemon Legends: Arceus proves that graphics aren't the sole element in why is a game great. Even though it can look very rough around the edges, the package here's an extremely fun one which hopefully outsources the overdone formula from previous titles. Moving forward, this should act as a stepping stone of the items a Pokemon game ought to be. The freedom to roam around the region and communicate with Pokemon without annoying random encounters is the reason why the sport more thrilling.

Top that off with the streamlined mechanics of battling and eliminating so many random factors to determine a specific Pokemon’s efficacy. That right there can make future titles more competitively viable. Hopefully, Gamefreak takes many aspects of farmville to interrupt away from the monotonous formula we’ve been too accustomed to previously few decades.

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