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3DS

Five Spoiler-Filled Reasons Why Pokémon X and Y Are My Least Favorite Pokémon Games

by Alex Culafi - October 12, 2013, 10:32 am PDT
Total comments: 29

How many times do I need to say spoilers?

So, Pokémon X and Y are out, and you’re probably reading this because you want even more information before you play the game yourselves. Well, I don’t have a blog revealing crazy information because you can already get that on every other forum website under the sun. I wanted to use this post to properly complain about the game, and I won’t hold back spoilers for anyone’s sake because I’ve already been doing that for two weeks.

What you see below is a list, from the perspective of a Pokémon fan, complaining about every major detail that I deem worthy of complaining about. The review you read where I gave the game an 8 still stands because X and Y are both great games from the most reasonable fanboy-free journalistic perspective I can come at it from. As a fanboy who considers Pokémon to be the best series of games ever made however, this is by far my least-favorite generation of Pokémon games. Here are the main reasons why:

1) The post-game is minimal. There’s Mewtwo, there are some roaming legendary birds (I’ve only seen Moltres), there’s Zygarde (the Rayquaza of the generation), and there’s a single town with the worst Safari Zone ever, the worst Battle Tower-type place ever, and a couple of extremely tiny story beats. There could be some other things to find, but, at best, this is nowhere near what the last two generations (and FRLG) have offered.  Compared to other Pokémon games, saying that this one is stuffed with content is nothing if not laughable. It’s like Ruby and Sapphire but without the sense of discovery (or the charming personality).

2) There are around 70 new Pokémon (give or take a few) to find and most of them aren’t that great. I would not mind the low count so much if the designs were so much better than in previous generations, but they’re substantially worse in my opinion. I know it’s subjective whether the low Pokémon count is a good or bad thing, but I play new Pokémon titles for the new creatures just as much as I do for the new gameplay, and the low count terribly disappoints me. Furthermore, they revealed around half of the new guys before the games even came out, which is a messed up method of advertising which spoils one of the biggest points of the game before anyone even touched it. Also, Mega Evolutions are neat additions (mostly), but they do not count as new Pokémon. They count as new forms, which is no valid substitute in my eyes. Speaking of which…

3) Although I love the mechanic and most of the guys I’ve seen are pretty cool, Mega Evolutions basically crush all of my dreams of certain Pokémon getting proper evolutions. I love the designs of Mega Pinsir and Mega Aerodactyl, but they don’t look cool enough to act as substitutes for the proper evolutions I’ve always wanted. Some of these, like the aforementioned two and Kanghaskhan, basically act as tangible excuses for why Game Freak no longer has to go back and properly give these evolution lines a proper new monster. I guess Pinsir could get a pre-evo, but who cares?

4) Certain caves and interiors, single-battles (and only single), and certain animations are in 3D. Everything else is in 2D. I don’t care what reasons you have, but there is no excuse to make a 3DS game where half of it is in 3D and half of it isn’t. I’m sure Game Freak tried their best to make the best game possible, but giving the visuals such a half-baked approach makes the entire game feel like a half-baked experience.  If you believe that the game looks so amazing in 2D (it doesn’t), show some conviction and make it a 2D game. If you are worried about the children, don’t from now on because the 2DS is out and the 3D you’re using doesn’t make whatever potential side-effects a non-issue. Go all in or don’t go at all, because what we have now is about as awkward as it can get. Even if you don’t have to worry about the 3D light flickering on and off constantly on the original 3DS, the constant eye adjustment is pretty uncomfortable.

5) The story is fine, but the pacing is even more atrocious than in Black 2 and White 2. The plot, while decently made and the most child-friendly story about mass-murder ever, is drip fed at the beginning of the game before being constantly shoved down your throat in a several-hour block of gameplay towards the end. Furthermore, as mentioned in Daan's review, the game has a weird chunk of several hours between the first and second gym badges before going to regular Pokémon pacing for the rest of the game. It gives the impression that Kalos is really huge, and then the game brings you to a realization by the third badge that it’s just a normal Pokémon game with jarring pacing. Bad pacing seems like it has become part of the Pokémon experience by now, but this one has it just a little bit worse.

If you read this and think my complaints are unreasonable, super-fanboyish, and silly, there’s a reason I made this a blog. These complaints are the reasons why I don’t care for the game as much as other Pokémon games, and every complaint here that was perfectly sound made it into the review. I hope you waited until weeks or months down the road to read this because I don’t want to ruin the game for you, but I feel like you seeing the title and the introduction makes whatever you read and feel here your responsibility.

Happy Pokémon X and Y day!

Talkback

Dwebble93October 12, 2013

Right, just beat the game, and I really think you're well off-base with a couple of these, with the post-game comments in particular betraying something of a lack of indepth criticism.


How deep into the postgame did you go? Did you see the Mega Stone hunt? The lengthy Looker Detective Agency sidequest? The Battle Chateau gym leader rematches? The various mechanics of the Safari Zone, such as being able to catch Starter Pokémon? On top of this, some of your comments are nonsensical- why is the Battle Maison so unacceptable in comparison to the Battle Tower or the Battle Subway? This easily represents more postgame than Black and White saw (let's face it, the Sage hunt was hardly compelling) and probably more in terms of pure content than either RS or DP as well. You compare it to Ruby and Sapphire, but the comparison is like you missing the Regi hunt in that game and decrying that as content-free.


Also, whinging that Pinsir and Aerodactyl will never get evos because of their Mega Evolutions is significantly off-base. These are Pokémon that have had no significant new moves or strategies to play with for more than a decade. What on Earth makes them prime candidates for having a new Pokédex slot wasted on them? At least this way they get to be the vanguard for a major new gameplay feature- complaining that they shouldn't have got these improvements because you wanted those improvements instead is nonsensical.


I will agree that the low level of outright new Pokémon is a shame (although I personally found the standard of design way higher than that found in Black and White), but it's overall comparable to the levels of newbies in Diamond and Pearl, substituting the worthless pre-evos and variable evos of past Pokémon (and, come on, the likes of Lickilicky and Dusknoir would easily qualify as Mega Evos).


These were clearly meant to be 3D games- remember the wording of the announcement trailer, with its "breathtaking 3D world"?- but performance issues stopped it from being so. I like 3D as much as the next guy, but I have zero problems with it being removed to have a smoother gaming experience. Indeed, I turned 3D off even when it was available for the sake of a smoother framerate. I would, of course, favour a 3D game that ran as smooth as possible, but I find it hard to castigate Game Freak too much for making a decision like that.

Quote from: Dwebble93

Right, just beat the game, and I really think you're well off-base with a couple of these, with the post-game comments in particular betraying something of a lack of indepth criticism.


How deep into the postgame did you go? Did you see the Mega Stone hunt? The lengthy Looker Detective Agency sidequest? The Battle Chateau gym leader rematches? The various mechanics of the Safari Zone, such as being able to catch Starter Pokémon? On top of this, some of your comments are nonsensical- why is the Battle Maison so unacceptable in comparison to the Battle Tower or the Battle Subway? This easily represents more postgame than Black and White saw (let's face it, the Sage hunt was hardly compelling) and probably more in terms of pure content than either RS or DP as well. You compare it to Ruby and Sapphire, but the comparison is like you missing the Regi hunt in that game and decrying that as content-free.


Also, whinging that Pinsir and Aerodactyl will never get evos because of their Mega Evolutions is significantly off-base. These are Pokémon that have had no significant new moves or strategies to play with for more than a decade. What on Earth makes them prime candidates for having a new Pokédex slot wasted on them? At least this way they get to be the vanguard for a major new gameplay feature- complaining that they shouldn't have got these improvements because you wanted those improvements instead is nonsensical.


I will agree that the low level of outright new Pokémon is a shame (although I personally found the standard of design way higher than that found in Black and White), but it's overall comparable to the levels of newbies in Diamond and Pearl, substituting the worthless pre-evos and variable evos of past Pokémon (and, come on, the likes of Lickilicky and Dusknoir would easily qualify as Mega Evos).


These were clearly meant to be 3D games- remember the wording of the announcement trailer, with its "breathtaking 3D world"?- but performance issues stopped it from being so. I like 3D as much as the next guy, but I have zero problems with it being removed to have a smoother gaming experience. Indeed, I turned 3D off even when it was available for the sake of a smoother framerate. I would, of course, favour a 3D game that ran as smooth as possible, but I find it hard to castigate Game Freak too much for making a decision like that.

The Looker quest is awful, the Mega Stone hunt is like 45 minutes of interesting gameplay, the Battle Chateau rematches aren't nearly as interesting as previous game rematches, and including starters as part of their randomized process is not a "mechanic". Battle Maison is unacceptable because it's probably the 5th or 6th tijme we've been on this rodeo and its the laziest version of this kind of experience yet. And yes, the experience here is definitely comparable to Ruby and Sapphire, and nowhere NEAR the several routes/towns/events/legendaries BW had.

And I'm upset because suggesting whether they get an evolution or not is a guess at best and a shot in the dark at worst. Mega Evolutions destroy that hope and ensure that these Pokémon can NEVER get evolutions.

There's like 40 more Pokémon in DP than there are in XY, and Mega Evolutions don't count under any reasonable circumstances. The difference between Lickylicky and Mega Alakazam is that the latter is not a tangible Pokémon -- it's a design alteration and an extremely temporary mechanic.

So, them not creating an engine that runs perfectly well is a reason for me to be happy that the 3D/2D switching is absolutely atrocious?

ShyGuyOctober 12, 2013

Is there a Pokemon cycle like the Zelda cycle?

For most people, it's permanently pinned at "Gen 1 was amazing, everything else sucks".

OblivionOctober 12, 2013

Even though Gen 2 was plagued with an imbalance issue. Psychic was the only type someone needed to dominate everything in the game. Anyone who says Gen 1 was the best has a serious case of rose-tinted glasses.

OblivionOctober 12, 2013

Quote from: Oblivion

Even though Gen 1 was plagued with an imbalance issue. Psychic was the only type someone needed to dominate everything in the game. Anyone who says Gen 1 was the best has a serious case of rose-tinted glasses.

Regarding your complaint of lack of post-game content: Any possibility they'll be releasing DLC down the line?  I can't see why they wouldn't, given this is one of Nintendo's biggest cash-cows.

Quote from: Shaymin

For most people, it's permanently pinned at "Gen 1 was amazing, everything else sucks".

Personal Love: 3 > 2 > 1 > Platinum > 5 > rest of 4 (yes, even HGSS) > 6
(IMO) Overall Game Quality: 5 > 4 > 2 > 3 = 6 > 1

It's nearly impossible to "objectively" rank the Pokémon games without having some kind of thing to base that opinion around.

Basic mechanics? 6 > 5 > 4 > 3 > 2 > 1.
Overall quality of content and experience? Beats the **** out of me.
Pokemon Designs? 2 > 1 > 5 = 3 > 6 > 4 in my opinion.

Mop it upOctober 13, 2013

Quote from: lolmonade

Regarding your complaint of lack of post-game content: Any possibility they'll be releasing DLC down the line?  I can't see why they wouldn't, given this is one of Nintendo's biggest cash-cows.

The third version is already kind of like DLC, except sold at retail for full price. I guess they could switch those features to DLC this time, but I doubt they will. I wouldn't be surprised if stuff like full 3D is saved for the third version.

KeifetoOctober 15, 2013

Quote from: Mop

Quote from: lolmonade

Regarding your complaint of lack of post-game content: Any possibility they'll be releasing DLC down the line?  I can't see why they wouldn't, given this is one of Nintendo's biggest cash-cows.

The third version is already kind of like DLC, except sold at retail for full price. I guess they could switch those features to DLC this time, but I doubt they will. I wouldn't be surprised if stuff like full 3D is saved for the third version.

I think the use of DLC would be the better way of going about Pokemon games now. its a way to constantly grow a game and i think it would be pretty cool to see

LucarioOctober 16, 2013

Do you think they'll make a remake of ruby and sapphire?

nickmitchOctober 17, 2013

I gotta disagree with two of your points. First is the number of new Pokemon. I like seeing multiple Pokemon from every generation as much as I like seeing/exploring new ones. The sheer population makes up for the lack of new ones, at least for me.

And I've had some problems with the pacing, but it's not what I'd call terrible. Certainly not as bad as G/S/C. But it could be as much the way I've been playing it. I do wish some of the wild Pokemon gave more exp. Wild, stage 1 Pokemon at level 30 is kinda weak when the gym leader is at 40+.

OblivionOctober 17, 2013

Leveling up is easy considering they gave you a Lucky Egg either before the 5th or 6th Gym. Anyone who thinks leveling up is difficult with the wild pokemon is kidding themselves. You never had to grind in a pokemon game before, and it's especially true now.


filthy casuals

nickmitchOctober 18, 2013

Just got the Lucky Egg, but saying that you've never had to grind in a Pokemon game is not true at all. There was a lot of that in Gen II and at least some in the others. Being easier doesn't mean it isn't there.

OblivionOctober 18, 2013

I've never had to grind. Ever.

OblivionOctober 18, 2013

If you keep your team to three fighters and three HM slaves, you do not need to grind. Any more fighters in your party and that is just overkill.

KhushrenadaOctober 18, 2013

Yeah man. Learn to play it right.

pokepal148Spencer Johnson, Contributing WriterOctober 18, 2013

Quote from: Oblivion

If you keep your team to three fighters and three HM slaves, you do not need to grind. Any more fighters in your party and that is just overkill.

there are five hms in this game how do you need 3 slaves?

pokepal148Spencer Johnson, Contributing WriterOctober 18, 2013

Quote from: pokepal148

Quote from: Oblivion

If you keep your team to three fighters and three HM slaves, you do not need to grind. Any more fighters in your party and that is just overkill.

there are five hms in this game how do you need 3 slaves?

I mean rock smash is a TM now but still

nickmitchOctober 18, 2013

Quote from: Oblivion

If you keep your team to three fighters and three HM slaves, you do not need to grind. Any more fighters in your party and that is just overkill.

Guess I've just been playing it wrong all these years.

KhushrenadaOctober 18, 2013

Gotta catch 'em all is the biggest lie since cake!

LoslolaOctober 30, 2013

I agree. The game is not entirely in 3D, The story is short and bland, it had no suspense and a weak finish. Post game was ordinary, not as good as the platinum or HGSS post game, or as good as the FRLG post game for that matter. Some not all designs were bad, I was so hyped for the fire starter but the final evo was a deal breaker. The cover legendaries look okay, the frog looks cool but short of that BW had some better designs. I don't really care about the fact only 70 new pokes were introduced, at least I wouldn't if 70% of them were good. The game just seems rushed to me. 50% 3D aside the graphics are fantastic, we got gen 1 flashbacks by being given a gen 1 starter which was cool.


My biggest problem is the mega evolutions. The designs were cool but the pros end there. 1 They are over powered - adding 100 stat base total to each pokemon. 2 Makes pokemon without mega evolutions less important. 3 The fact that they can change during battle. This is what they should have done: Made it so that all final evo pokes or stand alone pokes have 2 versions/forms. (NOT LEGENDARIES - they have enough power and don't need to be buffed - especially MEWTWO) They can only be changed outside battle and when changed they don't get a total stat boost. Example: Final evo charizard; Have the original with boosted SpATK, reduced DEF, have the new Fire/Flying or Fire/Dragon if ppl insist, have boosted ATK, reduced DEF. That way you can have a different spec (for lack of a better word). You can't boost the hell out of one stat without reducing another. Mewtwo did not need changing in any way, it was a power house and was one of the few pokemon with a 680 base stat total. Legendaries are OP as they are they don't need changing because there are perfect the way they are. But to take one of the most powerful pokemon and make it more powerful that Arceus, that is just god-damn ridiculous. 780 base - really???

I think I have said enough on this matter.

OblivionOctober 30, 2013

Overpowered? HA. You filthy casual*. Mega Evolutions are anything but overpowered. For the most part, the majority of Pokemon that became Megas needed a certain item to be any sort of viable, and the loss of that item due to a Mega Evolution is not worth it. For example, A Blaziken without a Life Orb? HA! All those bulky pokemon without leftovers? Ha! That means no choice items, berries, or anything else that can make or break a pokemon.


One of the only pokemon that gets a true bonus is Abomasnow. +50 in SpAtk? That's fucking crazy.


Oh, and Mewtwo wasn't OP by the time X/Y came around. That's what the Uber tier is for. He's only allowed to fight other Ubers. MegaMewtwoX gains a huge offensive boost but his speed, HP, and defenses either don't increase or hardly increase. Hell, MegaMewtwoY actually gets a stat decrease with Defense.

OblivionOctober 30, 2013

*I am joking when I said that.


Also, who cares about 3D? Considering the framerate dips during battles (It's their first full 3D polygon 3DS Pokemon game, give them a break) I wouldn't have wanted it either. Story is important in Pokemon? News to me. So you want the first of a Generation to have as much in game content as: a third game in the trilogy (Plat.) and two remakes? Yeah, totally gonna happen.


...you got hyped and the fire started was a disappointment so somehow that is GameFreak's fault and is a deal-breaker?

LoslolaOctober 30, 2013

Wasn't referring to you, I was agreeing with the original post

LoslolaOctober 30, 2013

and yes, mega evolutions are op, you would be silly not to realise that. Adding 100 base stats to a pokemon makes them op regardless whether or not they can't use another item.

OblivionOctober 30, 2013

I post reasons for why they are relatively not OP and you fire back with "yeah they because I said so"? Nice fucking job.

pokepal148Spencer Johnson, Contributing WriterOctober 30, 2013

Mega Pokemon are far from OP. As long as you are well prepared you can easily deal with most of them. At one point someone sent out a Gengar against my Tyrantium. I figured that Tyrantium could take on a regular one but I didn't want to take my chances with it's mega evo so I switched to snorlax. Sure enough he used a mega stone before launching a shadow ball at me, but snorlax's normal typing let it escape unscathed. Had I not switched tyrantium would have likely been dead.

can only use one of them and a good type advantage or defensive play can usually wreck them. there are only a few that I see having potential to become major threats

Garchomp: hillariously walled by togekiss, loss of speed makes it easy to cripple with status moves,

Gengar: loses levitate making it weak to ground moves, pretty much anything that outspeeds it can demolish it's nonexistant defenses

Lucario: loses flinch resisting abilities and is pretty slow without a scarf, anything with a good fire type move can make short work of it

Obamasnow: still has alot of not very friendly looking type weaknesses.

Blaziken: either haze away it's stat boosts or cripple it with status.

And I think that's enough.

nickmitchOctober 30, 2013

Gotta agree that Megas are not OP. There's just too much trade off. The Gengar example is perfect since it goes from not being affected by to being weak to ground attacks. That's a huge decision to make.

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