Classic Friday [Saturday Edition] Review of Pokemon X&Y

I recently gave Pokemon X&Y another chance. I regularly criticize the games for their lack of challenge, short length, and disappointing gym leaders. That being said I decided to take another look at Pokemon X&Y.

The Great:

Gameplay:

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Pokemon X&Y refined the gameplay of the series. It plays more like the console version of Pokemon games and it’s fantastic. The animations are good, and moves look great. That’s not the only thing that’s changed though. The camera angle has been reworked to add a cinematic feeling to the game and while it does work in some cases it also works against me because I can’t see what’s in front of me like I could in previous Pokemon games.

In addition to the gameplay changes we have different ways to traverse the world of Pokemon. Instead of just having a bike we can skate. This isn’t just some new way to travel though. Skating is very useful for grinding up and down rails to reach secret locations that offer us rare items. It’s also really simple to use and you don’t have to hotkey your skates like you do with a bike.

Pokemon X&Y feels like it takes longer to reach gyms, which is a good thing in my opinion, but in reality this is a pretty short game. I completed this game in 30 hours. It took me 50 to complete Omega Ruby for the first time and twice as long to complete Heart Gold, and Soul Silver.

The biggest new feature that’s been added to this in my opinion is the ability to customize your character. I can wear more then one outfit. I can actually go to a clothing store and buy new shoes, socks, hats, shirts, and backpacks. That’s a major plus and brings some replayability to the game.

Graphics:

The graphics are fantastic. This is easily one of the best looking 3DS games to date. Everything looks really good in this game. Rain, snow, sand, and even the character models. Then again every Pokemon game has always looked really good when compared to other games on handheld devices. No corners were cut here and I love that.

The Pokemon:

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The new Pokemon that were introduced in this game are actually really good. Not only did we get a new type of Pokemon with Fairy types, but we also got some pretty badass ones too. Diggersby, Tyrantrum, and Aegislash are among my favorites. There are many others, but it’ll be a really, really, long list if I decided to name them all.

Sounds:

The soundtrack here is great. It sounds like you would expect a Pokemon game to. The battle music is great, the rival music is great, and gym music is fantastic in my opinion. All of the pokemon sound really good, and the moves that they use sound good too. I had no problems whatsoever with the sounds in this game.

The Good:

Starter Pokemon:

The starter Pokemon aren’t bad, but they’re not great in my opinion. My least favorite of the three is actually Froakie. I know people love Froakie because of Greninja, but I just don’t like them. I really love Chespin, and I like Fennekin, but I don’t love it. Chespin is why this was bumped up from bad to good.

Gym Leaders:

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The gym leaders are ridiculously easy to beat in this game. Gym leaders in Pokemon are never hard to beat, but they’re easier then usual in this game. Their levels are higher, thankfully, but they’re still really easy. So why is this in the good section then? Because I enjoyed fighting most of them. I really like the fact that there is a bug type gym leader. Bug types usually aren’t featured in Pokemon games like that. I also like the fact that most of the gym leaders are different then your average. We also fought Ice, and fairy types. None of them were hard to beat, but they were enjoyable from your average water, and fire gyms.

The Bad:

Rivals:

This game is cluttered with to many unnecessary npcs. Instead of getting one rival like you do in every Pokemon game you get a few of them and they only served as a distraction to me. They took me out of the game from doing cool shit to listening to their boring rants about dancing and other unimportant crap. The main rival was pretty cool. I enjoyed wiping the floor with her party every time we fought, but everyone else needs to go.

The Villain:

Every pokemon game has a villain. The only difference is that Pokemon Omega Ruby’s Team Magma were fantastic villains in my opinion while Team whatever they’re called aren’t. First of all they look horrible. They’re just so red that it burns my eyes to look at them. Second, the story surrounding them is equally stupid and served no purpose whatsoever. I did not enjoy battling them and the game would have been much better without them present.

Elite Four and Pokemon Master:

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This was a big disappointment. The Elite Four is supposed to be the toughest trainers in all the land right? So why do they only have four Pokemon each? The Elite Four is supposed to be the toughest challenge you face, but I steamrolled them with very little effort. The same can be said about the Pokemon master. All of her Pokemon are gen 6 Pokemon and it’s nice to see such a representation of this generation it was also quite an easy battle for my Exadrill.

The Game Is Short:

This game is noticeably shorter then previous Pokemon games. I don’t remember the last time I completed a Pokemon game in under 40 hours. It’s not a huge deal for me, but it was unexpected. I thought the game would be longer and it wasn’t.

The Verdict:

Pokemon X&Y grew on me a little. I don’t hate it anymore. I actually really like it despite it’s flaws. The new Pokemon that were introduced are fantastic. I loved most of them that I raised and their designs are really neat, but the lack of a good villain, disappointing Elite Four, and lack of challenge really affected how I look at this game. This isn’t the best Pokemon game ever made, but it’s a few notches higher on my list then it previously was.

8/10

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