For the last few weeks, it’s been a mini-game of swap city on my Nintendo 3DS. I’ll play a little bit of Animal Crossing: New Leaf before bed, take the cartridge out, pop in Pokemon Y, and play a little bit of that. Eventually, I’ll remember that I have a loan to pay off and quite an important job to do as mayor of Arni, and so the cycle returns to where it started. It’s not the worst problem in the world, but I am beginning to see the benefits of owning digital copies of these large portable games as, strangely, I find removing carts from the 3DS to be a troublesome process. In my mind, it’s as laborious as lifting boulders over your head. One day, I’ll have to look deeper at this quirk of mine.
When last I talked about Pokemon Y here on Grinding Down, I had played maybe about five hours. That meant starting out slow and perfunctory as has been the case in all previous Pokemon game romps I’ve experienced, taking care of the first gym and doing some story-related stuff that blocked forward progress. Truthfully, it mostly involved wandering around tall grass and collecting as many fun-looking pocket monsters as I could with my limited amount of money and Pokeballs, as that Pokedex simply won’t fill itself out. The jerk.
But now I’ve played for a total of fifteen hours and have gotten the chance to see the Kalos region a bit more. Okay, okay–fifteen hours and seven minutes, for those that must really know. After kicking the butts of four gym leaders and earning their respective badges, as well as providing a swift beatdown to Team Flare to get the power back on in Lumiose City, my team looks like so:
- Delphox, LV 45 – nicknamed Fenny
- Talonflame, LV. 43 – nicknamed Flit
- Blastoise, LV 42 – nicknamed Urtle
- Roselia, LV. 41 – nicknamed Rosebud
There are two other spots on my team that are, for lack of a better way to say it, temporarily filled. I couldn’t even tell you what two Pokemon are there–as they don’t matter. They are just there to fill the gaps just in case and gain some EXP after battles thanks to the new rules of EXP Share. However, I do hope before the end-game fights start to find better replacements. I’m most definitely, no doubt in all the galaxy, saving a spot for a Garbodor, but the other slot is open territory. I guess I probably need to pick a Fairy-type Pokemon soon and stick with it, as I’m sure a Dragon-based gym is on the horizon, but I don’t have one that I really like just yet. Please suggest something other than Jigglypuff.
I don’t know if the gyms have been designed to feature easier progress-blocking Trainers with fewer challenging Pokemon to throw at you or if I’m a lot better at Pokemon Y than I originally thought, but it’s been smooth sailing since Day 1. I’ve not died once yet, and maybe that means my team is a bit overpowered. My starter Delphox is ferocious, able to wipe an opponent out in a single breath (of fire). Should they all be more around LV 35-37? Well, you can blame the EXP Share for that then, as it helps keep everyone growing, everyone improving. But yeah, it’s been extremely easy, which makes for a very lax gaming experience. I’m not terribly bothered by this, as I found Pokemon Black 2 to be pretty difficult and off-putting in its later half, and maybe Pokemon Y will get there too, though I kind of doubt it. This is the game Nintendo needed to sell a lot of 2DS and 3DS systems, and no one likes a game too difficult to play, unless you’re a sicko and into things like Dark Souls.
So, I’m about halfway through Pokemon Y‘s main story stuff, but after all that is dead and done this might be the first game in the franchise I spend some solid time tracking down all the collectible Pokemon. Granted, I like to think that about each iteration I play, and it never seems to pan out in the end. However, it really helps seeing them in 3D models even if by then I’ll never use them or battle against strangers online. Though I do need to try this Wonder Trade thing out sometime soon. Maybe I can pick up a cool ‘mon to fill that sixth slot void.