Community Review: Pokemon Sun & Moon

Image: Kotaku

It's been a little while since the launch, so I figure most people will have had time to digest, explore and comprehend all of the changes and additions within Pokemon Sun & Moon. And now it's time to ask: what do you think?

I've mostly sat out of the Pokemon craze, since it's one of my assigned "Holiday" games. Pokemon has always been the kind of game I like to sit down and absorb without distractions, and I don't think I'm alone in enjoying the series that way.

But from everyone else around me who's played it, as well as Patricia and Tegan who both wrote up their thoughts, Sun & Moon is nothing short of superb.

There aren't too many games left in our industry that move consoles. Even with the Switch and its promise of portability on the horizon, people are picking up a new 3DS just to play it, or dusting off their old one.

But how are you finding Alolan? It seems a little more, well, adult than the Pokemon games of old. Which is probably a good thing, since I'm a lot older than I was when I first played Pokemon Blue.

And the real question, of course: Sun or Moon?


Comments

    My first Pokemon game and I think its adorable. I just wish my OCD would let me stop spending hours running in circles catching pokemon and doing wonder trade with the duplicates I keep picking up! :p

    One part annoyed, two parts confused, overall it's hampering my enjoyment.

    I'm at around about the ghost trial.

    My Pichu won't evolve and I'm doing everything possible. It wasn't this difficult in the past.

    What changes have been made to the hidden (but easily detected) systems?

    I'm never a Pokemon Trainer with six defined slots, I'm more like an Ace Ventura type causing destruction everywhere I go with a menagerie of eight, ten, maybe more - mostly to myself. I'm severely under-levelled with the monsters I want to be using but I'm mostly coasting on two strong over-achievers.

    It's hard not because of design but because of my own idiocy.

    Any tips for the breeding? I am leaning towards breeding Mudbrays, I like them, and suppose it'd be a nice place to start.

    Add my friend code for trading/battle/etc

    2492-4140-7879

    Also, nobody go and patent my Ace Ventura RPG Pokemon-knock off idea.

    I'm going to be rich.

      As far as I'm aware, I don't think there have been many changes made to the happiness system, although it is completely separate from the Pokemon Refresh "Affection" level.

      Pichu, like Cleffa and Igglybuff among others, evolves when its happiness maxes out. Things like keeping it in the party, not letting it faint etc all help to max out this stat. I'm not sure if there's a NPC in this edition that can check the happiness level for you. There is a merchant that gives your Pokemon massages (in the town with Olivia I think), which, if you have the money, could be a quick way to max out the happiness.

      The trials are well designed to give you access to type-strong Pokemon as you progress through. As someone who has just beat the Elite 4, I found that from the 3rd island onward, it paid to have a core team of 4 (just substituting 2 wild cards to cover skill gaps or as I felt like it). Having a core team from this point meant I could wipe out the E4 without devoting any time to grinding in the "Victory Road" equivalent.

      I've only done some Ditto breeding to throw spare starters onto Wonder Trade. The walking time to obtain an egg seemed a lot shorter compared to prior games. I'm mainly waiting for the bank update to drop to bring in my near-complete Dex, so I wasn't planning on doing breeding for many 'mons. One good thing about the ranch that I've seen so far is that because Pokemon don't earn levels while they're in there, your costs are fixed at 500 per creature. This may change based on their duration, though so I wouldn't take this as gospel.

        Don't you mean friendship? I thought happiness was tied to Pokémon Refresh?

        The NPC that checks happiness/friendliness is the lady right next to the Masseuse in Olivia's city

      I've found the easiest way to bump friendship is to go to the Friendship Cafe/Parlour in the Festival Plaza -- not sure if these are set the same for everyone or you need to play a bit to get the right rotation of shops? -- But anyway a quick set of meals from there for about 20FC and my eevee evolved into Espeon at the next level (after just catching it!).

      Looking into it, it seems the shops are random so not the best way for everyone to get those friendship evolutions.

    Really enjoying it. I'm halfway through the second island, feel like I'm staying just-slightly overlevelled enough, and have a decently diverse team for most situations (with the exception of the Whitney wannabe on Rt. 8). As soon as I learn the types of the next trial, I focus on getting the respective member of my party a few extra levels; not grinding beyond trying to capture anything new I see (and trying to re-find the ones that get away), and not having much trouble at all. Speaking of, holy crap, the type diversity! By the time I was hitting level 20, I had someone to handle just about anything thrown at me.

    I really like the lack of HMs (or rather, the way it moves the role that HMs serve out of your party) - it means every party member can be useful, no-one's moves feel like they're wasted out of necessity, and you can keep everyone on even footing because everyone gets their chance to shine.

    The trials are so refreshing - after so many games with the same "8 Gyms then Elite 4" recipe, it's nice to have a different progression structure - it feels like a new game in the series, rather than an old game in a different hat.

    I hate that there's no 3D. And that they give you the awesome option to have L function as A so you can push through the dialogue with the one hand you're operating the 3DS with while doing other things, except then they don't do anything about this in parts where it tells you to use L+A they don't change it to something else. Lazy. Also there's a huge hang on the text where I've finished reading it and am mashing A to try get to the next part but it still just waits and waits to present the little arrow that lets you move on. It's maybe only a second or a half of one but it's significant enough to be very annoying. Speaking of annoying, that bloody rotom dex playing the wisecracking cartoon sidekick is just ugh. Would rather the entire lower screen be map instead of having half of it obscured by his stupid face.

    On the flipside I like that they actually present the petting thing to you now, I totally missed it in Y since it was hidden on part of the touch screen which I never used throughout the entire game (same with those O power things, kept meeting the pink dude but had no idea what he was talking about and figured it was to do with something I'd find later but never came), so that was nice. And I like that they point out which moves are super/non/effective when you fight things you've come across before, that's handy for someone like me who hasn't memorised that whole table (though having it there to look up in the game would be nice).

    Barely made it through the game yet, just done the first trial thing so I'm sure I'll find more to complain about yet :P

      I agree with the Rotom Dex, it kinda shits me.
      The no 3D is a massive let down as well, i play all my 3DS games in 3D.
      im upset at the need to buy a piece of software (pokebank) to transfer my pokemon from X/Y as well, no native trade is a real kick in the pants to pokemon fans.

      However that all aside its a nice refreshing change to the franchise that still sticks with the tried and true, so im really enjoying it.

    "OMG how do I shut up these damn NPCs so I can just play?" simulator 2016

    Not overly happy with the new title - Do like the fresh approach, but went from New Game to beating the elite 4 in under 19 hours (Probably be faster with Battle Animations off). Alpha/Omega and X/Y were similar, but they pushed closer to 24 hours (With BA off)

    And, given that I'm working on a Living Pokedex, I guess I just have to shelve the game until Jan when the Pokebank gets updated

    I like a lot of the mechanic changes but there is just so much terrible dialogue I got bored and stopped. It feels like every 2 minutes i'm stuck in a 5 minute conversation with a bunch of retards reminding me how to put on my pants.

    Nintendo needs a mode for this game for people who have played a pokemon game before, the franchise has been out long enough for the original players to have children of their own.

    Also the Rotom Dex sucks. Why is Rotom not automatically in your Pokedex if he is literally in your Pokedex?

    I absolutely love it... I'm playing Sun but will pick up Moon after. Such great concepts!

    Finished the game. I won't spoil things here.
    The game is certainly great for new players with the removal of HMs and the typing stuff and the map locating thing
    But for hardcore and competitvie trainers like myself and my friends training got much harder with the removal of super training and constant high level trainers. Player interaction got more complicated and yeah...
    Pokemons in the Alolan regieon all feels bit slow and not the meta like sweepers so quite bummed out...
    But still I r8 this game 8/8 m8

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