Pokémon: New Generation and New Ways To Play


Ashley Hawkins

The open world of Paldea is now available to explore in the new games Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet, where players can play with a variety of new features.

Azlyn Kannow, Staff Reporter

The new generation of Pokémon has come with many changes. Some changes have made bigger shifts in the community and some are much smaller. 

“Pokémon Scarlet” and “Pokémon Violet” are the newest additions to the franchise, having been released on Nov. 18, 2022. These new games were developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo. With these now available to the public, this is the ninth generation of mainline Pokémon games. 

The most interesting change may be that Pokémon has finally hopped into the open world model role-playing game (RPG) that many games have turned to. An open world model is when a game has more than one way to complete the level and in this case, you are free to choose where you want to go at what time. Open world is now what many gaming companies have turned to, and for the most part, it has ended up working out for Pokémon since this format creates a popular gaming experience. Players get to pace their own game and don’t need to wait for story events. In past games, Pokémon had you follow more of a straightforward story that if you want to progress you have to do certain story events to get to the next area. In open world games, you just need to be able to recognize what level you’re at and make decisions based on that. 

Although the open world aspect brings a new light to Pokémon, it can cause players to get lost in areas with very high-level Pokémon since the gyms and areas do not scale the level to the same level your party is at. This detail is probably the most important thing to remember when playing this game, and most people who have reviewed the game have come out to say they wish that in the future Pokémon could scale the gym and area levels with the players’ levels. 

Throughout these games, you may also find new aspects of gameplay such as glowing swords that will end up crumbling when you pull them out of the ground. These swords allow you to battle and catch four special legendary Pokémon. These legendaries are collectible for the player and are living manifestations of hatred and envy from an evil king from the past (in the game). These legendaries are Chien-Pao, Ting-Lu, Wo-Chien, and Chi-Yu. You will need to find four of each color sword: purple, blue, green, and yellow. Only then will you be able to catch these special legendaries. 

Now in the region of Paldea, a new mechanic is that you don’t battle trainers while adventuring through the region, leaving your team a bit weaker without the constant battling. The best ways to combat this problem are the Chansey method and the Tera raid battles. 

The Chansey method is the same as in any other Pokémon game. You find Chansey — a pink, Normal-type Pokémon — and defeat them for large amounts of exp (experience points). 

Then there are Tera dens that work almost the same as max raid battles in Pokémon “Sword” and Pokémon “Shield”. These Tera dens allow the player to battle Pokémon with different Tera types. 

Every Pokémon has a Tera type, but they may be able to change their type to something different. Similar to a fire type, Pokémon can have a Tera type of water and become a pure water type when they terastallize — this is the main mechanic in the game. This means if the fire type terastallizes into a water type, they are able to get the stab (same type attack bonus) boost of that type.

This allows the player to find Pokémon of different Tera types, battle them, and if they wish, catch them. In the Tera dens, you not only battle and catch Pokémon, but you can also receive exp (experience points) candies from sizes extra small to extra large. This is another way that a player can level up their team. 

These are the best ways to easily grind exp. However, if that isn’t how you want to spend your time, you can also have ongoing “Let’s Go” battles which add up to quite a bit of exp. 

Not only has the world changed, but there are now mass outbreaks just like “in the year 2022 game Legends Arceus.” These mass outbreaks have incredible odds of getting a shiny Pokémon when you have defeated anywhere between 30 and 60 Pokémon. This does require quite a bit of time and can be a grind, but it can be rewarding when you finally find the shiny Pokémon you want. Though shiny Pokémon are more of a collectible because they have no real difference except for the color change, they are a big part of the community for the people who like to go throughout their play through with a shiny. 

If you are worried about the “Let’s Go” mechanic fainting your shiny, there is a code in the game that doesn’t allow the Pokémon to do this. 

This Pokémon game has been one of my personal favorites that has been released in the past few years. The Pokémon Company tried something different, and I think they did a great job.

I wouldn’t recommend this game if you don’t like the repetitive theme of just exploring and beating the gym leaders and the team star bases (the “evil” team for the Paldea region). Though, once you get through the tutorial, you can really choose what to do first. I think this could appeal to most people who like the story but also want to strategize and build a team of their choice.