Little things you like about Pokémon

One little thing I enjoy about Pokémon would be how creative sets from the iconic FEAR (Focus sash, Endeavor, Quick Attack Ratatta) inspired an entire meme, but oddly effective (depending on the foe) strategy that put the “Big things come in small packages” slogan to (super?) effective use.

Who knew Joey’s top percentage Ratattas would take hold at the championship tournaments? This later came to inspire my PTMTP (Pain Split, Toxic, Magic Coat, Taunt Probopass) anagram that effectively conquered the weaknesses Ratatta had (hitting ghosts, healing per use for repeated spamming, and immunity to the then Toxic Sandstream strategies that dominated Generation 4).

With something small, grew even more strategies, from the Shell Bell Aron Endeavor sets to the Sturdinja Balanced Hackmons mainstay (like if there is one thing that stays consistent for Balanced Hackmons from generation to generation, it’s Sturdinja baby. No, don’t say Imposter, Eviolite [and even Scarf] Chansey dethroned Blissey, so that is not consistent).

Small things, but big impact for generations to come :)

Oh, and one more option, it inspired me to create the Pain Split strategy for Partners In Crime, where a combination of Trick Room, Leech Seed, Pain Split, and Imprison is able to dominate purely offensive teams with... you guessed it - Level 1 Pokémon!
Sturdy + Harvest is no joke, especially when it can be shared among the entire team! Take that Stallers!
 
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If you play console RPGs from the 32 bit era or later and then go back to Pokemon, you'll realize how much faster Pokemon is in comparison. Battles are quick, especially if you turn animations off. The random encounter rate can be controlled with Repels, or avoiding some grass patches on outdoor land routes. You don't need to grind if you fight most of the trainers. You don't have to listen to characters whine about how they aren't strong enough to "protect" anyone in cutscenes for 30 hours. (Though the Alola games hint that the series may be going in the excessive cutscene direction.)

Pokemon is often criticized for being too easy, though it may be better to think of it as having custom difficulty settings. The series allows for a wide range of self-imposed restrictions, from a Jigglypuff solo run to permadeath Nuzlocke playthroughs. I enjoy replaying Pokemon more than most other RPGs because of this.
 
I love the possibility to turn battle animatios off: 90% of the time animations are wasted time unless we are talking about a plot event or an important battle.
I really like the possibility to use the bicycle to make the game faster, especially if you need to go to the Pokemon Center to restore your team. I also like the possibility in HG/SS to have the Running Shoes always active with a single touch: sometimes, simple is better.
 
What strikes me most in all Pokémon games is the HM's, because there are so many moves in the game, but few gain prominence and become extremely necessary, an example is Strength, a move that no one uses in the competitive, but in the in- game is so used and needed.
Talking about the anime, I am a fan of gym leaders because they all convey an emotion in the episode and become unforgettable, plus we will always find one in some generation that will refer our personality, I love Lenora!
 
What strikes me most in all Pokémon games is the HM's, because there are so many moves in the game, but few gain prominence and become extremely necessary, an example is Strength, a move that no one uses in the competitive, but in the in- game is so used and needed.
Talking about the anime, I am a fan of gym leaders because they all convey an emotion in the episode and become unforgettable, plus we will always find one in some generation that will refer our personality, I love Lenora!
Oh wow, I didn't think anyone actually liked HMs. I can sort of see where you're coming from, though I always wished HMs were handled differently much earlier than they were.
 
Oh wow, I didn't think anyone actually liked HMs. I can sort of see where you're coming from, though I always wished HMs were handled differently much earlier than they were.
Yes, I really like the HM moves, and actually my favorite one is Surf, very useful and good.

Oh wow, I didn't think anyone actually liked HMs. I can sort of see where you're coming from, though I always wished HMs were handled differently much earlier than they were.
Do you have a favorite HM or something?

MOD EDIT: Please don't double post
 
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This is technically not the games themselves, but...

I kind of dig the recent 3DS background theme "Boss Outfit Pikachu". I may not care much for Pikachu itself, but I do like how they've captured the pose and general expression of each team boss' official artwork with Pikachu. (Team RR on the top screen, Aqua, Magma, Galactic, Plasma, Flare, and Skull scrolling on the touch screen)
 
This is technically not the games themselves, but...

I kind of dig the recent 3DS background theme "Boss Outfit Pikachu". I may not care much for Pikachu itself, but I do like how they've captured the pose and general expression of each team boss' official artwork with Pikachu. (Team RR on the top screen, Aqua, Magma, Galactic, Plasma, Flare, and Skull scrolling on the touch screen)
Especially the Pikachu that is dressed as Cyrus. He's trying way too hard to be serious.
 
Oh wow, I didn't think anyone actually liked HMs. I can sort of see where you're coming from, though I always wished HMs were handled differently much earlier than they were.
I like HMs as a concept. If they were handled a bit differently(not 3 damn water moves, no useless ones like Flash and Cut) I don’t think people would object at all to a handful of moves that push you towards having a diverse team and enable interesting overworld puzzles.
 

Magnus0

formerly Magnus Swiftwind
I like HMs as a concept. If they were handled a bit differently(not 3 damn water moves, no useless ones like Flash and Cut) I don’t think people would object at all to a handful of moves that push you towards having a diverse team and enable interesting overworld puzzles.
I agree. I don't dislike field moves in the field where they belong. The problem is that HM's take up valuable move slots of actually useful in-battle moves. I think having just four moves slots is already very limited with how many moves there are now.

Personally, I really like the idea of HM moves becoming innate qualities of a pokemon, just like abilities. Some pokemon are so associated with certain qualities, like Lapras ferrying people over the water or sawk breaking builders. It makes a lot of sense that these pokemon can use these qualities in the field without actually knowing the moves surf and rock smash, or rather, it doesn't make sense that these pokemon CAN'T use these qualities in the field without knowing surf and rock smash.

If GF decides to implement this passive HM system, I think they should limit the available HM passives to about five or six so you can fill an entire team with every HM. I would say surf (would also function as waterfall, dive and whirlpool), fly, rock smash, flash, cut and rock climb, because I think every pokemon can use at least one of these moves. I also think that for pokemon that should be able to learn multiple field moves, like scyther with both cut and fly or lanturn with both flash and surf, there should be an opportunity to use either one of them. Or, even better, both. With two 'slots' for field moves, there would be room for niche field moves as well. Examples are dig, teleport or milk drink, but this can be expanded to 'field abilities' as wel, such as pickup, stench or illuminate.

Just think about what an opportunity this provides to currently mediocre pokemon. Imagine a pokemon like Pachirisu. It would have volt absorb as in-battle ability, flash as field move and pickup as field ability. That's a lot of utility in one pokemon. Stronger pokemon would get more utility too, but still.This would be so good for in-game teambuilding.
 
I too agree that HM's are interesting in concept, but I do question their usage for puzzle solving, as what instances are you guys thinking of?

While we've certainly seen some block moving puzzles using strength in the past, that's where the puzzle potential begins and ends. With the exception of Fly (which is the fast travel system) all the other HMs are more disguised keys to unlock disguised gates, allowing more access to the game world but not really being used for puzzles. Unless you really think using cut on a bush, rock smash on a rock, or surf on water are that mentally engaging.

That's part of why the new ride pokemon system is exciting to me, as it removes the limitations HMs imposed (moveslot hogging, party homogenization) so it could focus more on it's other implementations.

At least, in theory it could have but Alola didn't really capitalize much beyond the "gate and key" aspect. Maybe in an iteration or two it will get better, I hope. I would love a Paper Mario-esque pokemon puzzle partner system.

And now I reminded myself of Paper Mario and made myself sad.

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Too bad they never made another sequel. I SAID TOO BAD THEY NEVER MADE ANOTHER SEQUEL!
 

Magnus0

formerly Magnus Swiftwind
I too agree that HM's are interesting in concept, but I do question their usage for puzzle solving, as what instances are you guys thinking of?

While we've certainly seen some block moving puzzles using strength in the past, that's where the puzzle potential begins and ends. With the exception of Fly (which is the fast travel system) all the other HMs are more disguised keys to unlock disguised gates, allowing more access to the game world but not really being used for puzzles. Unless you really think using cut on a bush, rock smash on a rock, or surf on water are that mentally engaging.

That's part of why the new ride pokemon system is exciting to me, as it removes the limitations HMs imposed (moveslot hogging, party homogenization) so it could focus more on it's other implementations.

At least, in theory it could have but Alola didn't really capitalize much beyond the "gate and key" aspect. Maybe in an iteration or two it will get better, I hope. I would love a Paper Mario-esque pokemon puzzle partner system.

And now I reminded myself of Paper Mario and made myself sad.

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Too bad they never made another sequel. I SAID TOO BAD THEY NEVER MADE ANOTHER SEQUEL!
I think the point that people want to make about HM's is not that it provides an engaging puzzle-solving mechanic, but rather that it encourages having a varied team. Different kinds of pokemon and especially different types of pokemon can learn different kinds of HM's. By having a lot of different HM's, GF can encourage you to catch a lot of pokemon with different skills, you know, the main objective of the game.

Obviously, it doesn't work very well with the current HM system because HM's take up moveslots. This can be solved by making them passive skills of pokemon like I mentioned earlier. Another reason why it doesn't work to well is because of the 'gate and key' nature of the current HM's. If gamefreak really wanted to capitalise on the advantage of HM, they should include a lot of optional caves and routes and such with cool items or rare pokemon. Then players who do catch a lot of pokemon to have access to a lot of HM's (and to fill in the dex of course) will actually be rewarded for their effort. Experienced players who don't care about the dex only have to catch specific pokemon to get to specific optional areas to get the specific items they want.

Now that I think of it, GF should really put some effort into making completing the dex more interesting in general. Catching pokemon is generally boring and having the pokemon is generally pointles because you can only use six at a time in battle and swapping them in and out of the pc is inefficient. One way to encourage players to catch and use more pokemon is to give them two extra pokemon slots. However, the pokemon in these extra slots can't be brought out to battle. They also recieve experience based on how much your battling pokemon recieved, but this experience does not deprive your battling pokemon's exp gain. Here are some benifits of these extra moveslots:

1. More slots mean more pokemon, thus increasing the amount of pokemon the player will catch as well.

2. More pokemon also means more access to HM moves and utility on your team. Especially because the pokemon in the extra slots don't have to be good battlers anyway. No more battling slot wasted on slaves.

3. Because pokemon in the bonus slots generate a sort of bonus exp, you can spread your exp over multiple team members without overleveling any of your most used pokemon.

You can even go a step further by making the sixth slot a bonus slot as well, because it's often used for an HM slave anyway. This allows you to generate even more free exp, which means that you can regularly swap pokemon and use multiple different pokemon throughout your adventure without having to grind up underleveled pokemon and without overleveling your main party. The dumb exp share can be deleted as well. Then the boss fights can also be balanced around five member teams.
 
If gamefreak really wanted to capitalise on the advantage of HM, they should include a lot of optional caves and routes and such with cool items or rare pokemon. Then players who do catch a lot of pokemon to have access to a lot of HM's (and to fill in the dex of course) will actually be rewarded for their effort. Experienced players who don't care about the dex only have to catch specific pokemon to get to specific optional areas to get the specific items they want.
Isn't that what they did in Black & White? As far as I remember you only ever need to cut a single bush early in the game, and everything else is completely optional.
 

Magnus0

formerly Magnus Swiftwind
That's true, but the optional stuff is very limited as well. So it still doesn't really encourage the use of many different kinds of pokemon
 
Isn't that what they did in Black & White? As far as I remember you only ever need to cut a single bush early in the game, and everything else is completely optional.
Yes, but Black & White didn't do that very well. Sure, there's Strength to give you shortcuts, which is amazing (no wonder they kept that feature), but I was particularly disappointed with Surf. If you didn't pick Oshawott, you'd get a laughable selection of Pokemon to choose as a Surfer.

I personally never explored the west side of Unova until the post-game, when I could get access to the Super Rod.
 
Obviously, it doesn't work very well with the current HM system because HM's take up moveslots.
I don't think that's the real problem. First, you don't need all the 24 move slots the game provides you with if you train a full party. Even if you give up five or six of them for moves you never select in battle even once, you still have more than enough room to comfortably get through the game. You might need to switch a bit more often for type coverage, that's all.

Second, most HM moves aren't even bad. Surf, Waterfall, and Strength are good on their own, I don't think anyone would seriously dispute that. Then you have Fly, Dive, and Rock Climb, all of which effectively aren't that different from the first group. They certainly match up in terms of power. I understand that the lower accuracy is off-putting to some people, but most of the time these moves just take a bit more real time to execute (surely the AI actually using those waste turns effectively are edge cases).

Cut/Rock Smash could stand to be a bit better and Flash/Defog simply aren't useful most of the time, so fair enough on those, but, returning to the first point, 20 move slots is a lot (and that's in a hypothetical game in which all four of these HMs exist at the same time).

To spin this a bit further, I don't think adding more move slots would change most people's approach to HMs. I know you talked about party slots, but for simplicity's sake, let's say each Pokemon gets a fifth move slot, for a total of 30. I reckon that even then these extra slots wouldn't be used for HMs, but ultimately unnecessary coverage moves and minor optimizations. Maybe that's what you were getting at, too, that there are probably psychological components that make HMs appear undesirable and making them passive skills would indeed remove that issue.

Finally, I also agree with your point that making HM use more consistently rewarding would naturally make them more appealing overall. Maybe you could even assign a specific purpose to each HM (e.g. Strength for shortcuts). But ultimately, if GF wanted to encourage HMs being incorporated into the regular move sets of your party, avoiding giving the player access to a Pokemon that can learn a lot of HMs by itself would probably also be a step into the right direction.
 
I don't think that's the real problem. First, you don't need all the 24 move slots the game provides you with if you train a full party. Even if you give up five or six of them for moves you never select in battle even once, you still have more than enough room to comfortably get through the game. You might need to switch a bit more often for type coverage, that's all.
In theory you're right, but the game doesn't really give you "24 moveslots" as you so put it. As obviously not every pokemon can learn every move, so we aren't dealing with 6 Mew's. You have to design a team specifically to incorporate all your HMs.

One factor is that the water series HM moves can generally only be learned by water pokemon. So you end up in a scenario where you either stack all the water moves on one pokemon (making them a one-trick pony, more or less) or you have to stack your team with more water pokemon (which goes against the game's assertion that you need type diversity). And even if water pokemon are pretty useful (and the HM moves too), I don't like being told I always need a water-type party member.

Then there's the normal moves (Cut, Strength, Rock Climb). Normal moves aren't that useful on most pokemon, the only ones that benefit are normal types that get STAB or maybe water types for the Water + Normal decent neutral coverage combo. Otherwise about every other pokemon would rather benefit from something that can get super effective hits on something. Sure it's not the worst thing in the world, but it's still dealing with an inferior option.

And then there's the fact that cut, flash, defog, and rock smash are dead weight, plain and simple. So that's like slicing your "move slot total" down to 20.

Obviously you can work around the HM limits and complete the game, that's why the concept of HM slaves arose in the first place. But even if it's a light ball and chain, you can't really say that it's better than no ball & chain at all (Gen 7's ride pokemon).
 
I will be honest; while Alola's Pokemon Rides liberates me from the need to use HMs, it does feel a little unsatisfying that I am not using my own Pokemon to navigate obstacles. Part of the journey should be about growing and bonding with Pokemon so it feels "cheap" to just use rental Pokemon to bypass these obstacles. This is why I think an internalised skill for field moves is a better option than Poke Rides.
 
I will be honest; while Alola's Pokemon Rides liberates me from the need to use HMs, it does feel a little unsatisfying that I am not using my own Pokemon to navigate obstacles. Part of the journey should be about growing and bonding with Pokemon so it feels "cheap" to just use rental Pokemon to bypass these obstacles. This is why I think an internalised skill for field moves is a better option than Poke Rides.
Well, the way Let's Go structured HM usage (they're used by the starters, and you can ride your own pokemon instead of using a bike) gives hope that in the future core series title we could actually be using our own Pokemon for "pokepassage" job.
I wouldn't mind needing a "water type" for surfing or "flying type" for Fly and actually see said pokemon use the move on field.
Would both be satisfactory and improve the immersion.
 
I will be honest; while Alola's Pokemon Rides liberates me from the need to use HMs, it does feel a little unsatisfying that I am not using my own Pokemon to navigate obstacles. Part of the journey should be about growing and bonding with Pokemon so it feels "cheap" to just use rental Pokemon to bypass these obstacles. This is why I think an internalised skill for field moves is a better option than Poke Rides.
Yeah, this is something I thought about shortly after making my post.
Pokémon's stuck with this problem due to the unique peculiarities of what it is. You need something that forces players to consider what they use and think about diversity and make compromise... but without harming the "use anything you want" thing.
HMs was an interesting idea of a way around this, but it left you with the problems stage7_4 outlined above. Ultimately there's pros and cons to both having HMs and not having HMs, and I think eventually Pokémon might need to find a different approach.
That said, I still appreciate playing at least one gen without HMs because it allowed me to experience the positives of that.
 
Obviously you can work around the HM limits and complete the game, that's why the concept of HM slaves arose in the first place. But even if it's a light ball and chain, you can't really say that it's better than no ball & chain at all (Gen 7's ride pokemon).
I mean, I personally can. If it wasn't obvious, I've come to like HMs over the years and I like that the game puts some restrictions on what I can use at the same time. To me, HMs provide a good mix of restrictions and choice. A lot of Pokemon can learn the normal type moves, same with Rock Smash, and as far as I'm concerned, these moves are still useful for taking out weaker route enemies etc. Granted, the water moves can be a bit more complicated, but even then, a water one-trick pony is a pretty good one-trick pony.

That being said, I understand why people prefer the ride system, it's just less interesting to me.
 

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