It’s been a few months since the new generation of Pokemon was released, and there has been some opinions on this game, let me tell you. The Pokemon games have been a hot topic of debate for a while now. Game Freak seems to have adopted a very strict yearly release schedule for Pokemon. While that is great because we get to play more Pokemon games, it’s bad because those games look and often perform poorly and are all around a worse product because of it.
For the last few releases, you could look past most of the issues. The remakes of Diamond and Pearl were mostly the same game with no platinum content, but they looked decent If you liked the style and did what they said. Sword and Shield has some rough environments but ended up being a solid game. Same with Legends Arceus.
Scarlet and Violet were the first pokemon games in recent memory that basically everyone was outraged. Most still are. And unlike temporary anger for the lack of a national dex, this is consistent and very understandable outrage. Scarlet and Violet were released in an unacceptable state. Nothing good the game does will ever and should ever erase that. It was an unfinished, buggy product that barely ran and should have never been released. I’ve not seen a single person try to deny this. Because you really can’t. It was a buggy mess. It’s a fact.
At its best, the game runs fine. At its worst, which is literally any point when particles are on screen, any time multiple models are on screen, or anytime you’re not on flat, poorly textured ground, it runs awful. As you’d imagine. That’s all the time, pretty much. It does create comedic moments, like character models actually moving at 3 FPS. This isn’t in optional parts of the game, either. This is a required scene 1o minutes in the game. The game makes an absolutely terrible first impression and never really performs any better. It’s garbage from beginning to end. But I want to make it clear. That’s just the performance.
The reason I have such a love-hate relationship with this game is that the actual gameplay of the game is the best the series has ever been. There are so many good things this game does. To start, the world actually feels alive, unlike Arceus. There are items to collect and tons of Pokemon around, often in groups to sell the whole they actually live in packs and in this world thing. It’s fun to jump and fly around. Everything you do in the world feels useful and like you’re building to something.
This is the first truly open-world Pokemon game, and it’s a blast! They did a really good job. You have complete freedom to do whatever you want. You can practically do everything in the game before even fighting the first gym. And when you mix all three stories together in a natural playthrough, it just feels wonderful. It is, by far, the funnest journey I’ve ever had in a Pokemon game in recent memory. It just feels right.
That being said, the game has a ton of issues. This game has good characters and a great story for once, but it’s only right at the end. Up to that point, there’s no story to speak of, really. These games could also really use level scaling. It’s far too easy to out-level if you do things out of order, which is pretty detrimental when the game wants you to explore.
The game also continued to trend of not being able to turn off experience share, which is always bad. It’s literally removing options for the player. They also got rid of the set battle style, making challenges a lot harder to make difficult. I’m not a fan of any of these. People have wanted more player choice in pokemon games, not actively removing features that have existed since the series’ conception.
With all that said, I really enjoy Scarlet and Violet. I think that, from a gameplay perspective, they’re some of the best Pokemon games we’ve ever got, and for the little bit of story we do get, I think it’s the best story in the mainline games. It’s incredibly fun. But all of that doesn’t really matter because the game should have never been released. For as good as most of this game is, it would have been infinitely better, given another year to cook. I think it would have been the best Pokemon games to date, but now, while I enjoy them, I just get a little sad overall. We can only hope for a patch, really.
Thank you very much for reading
Here’s hoping the series gets its act together.
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I refuse to play Violet and Scarlet due to the enormous number of glitches it has at its disposal. Game Freak never learned a lesson about doing a thorough QC before releasing their games which literally sparked the ire of many of its long time fans, including me.