The Best New Features In Pokemon Sun & Moon
Reaching it’s seventh generation is no simple accomplishment to tick off the bucket list for the Pokemon Company. In fact, people have gone far to point out how the rich lore behind these titles might mark the end of new generations of Pokemon [YouTube theory video] as we know it. However, let’s not get too worked up about that. Instead, let’s focus on what the new titles bring to the table – what they’re doing differently and what they’re doing well. Since the Pokemon Sun & Moon Demo has been officially released via the Nintendo 3DS eShop, it’s worth picking it up, even if just to see what all the fuss is about.
Pokemon Sun & Moon marks a major milestone in the companies history. With titles such as Pokemon Red & Blue*, classics that all of us gamers remember, the Pokemon Company have come a long way. Pokemon Red & Blue came out in 1996, which means Pokemon Sun & Moon is Pokemon’s 20th Anniversary. Of course, the Pokemon Company have been very upfront about this throughout, as they’ve been posting plenty of 20th Anniversary content for people on their website and their YouTube channel.
With the release of the demo on October 18th 2016, Pokemon Sun & Moon looks like it’s easily the franchises most ambitious game to date. There are some returning mechanics and many major innovations in the titles history. From brand new Pokemon (of course), to new special forms for older Pokemon, it seems like Pokemon are really trying to branch out in what they do. Here are my favourite new features of Pokemon Sun & Moon and also a quick discussion around the incredibly clever campaign of the Pokemon Sun & Moon Demo.
PokeRide (and other ridable Pokemon)
Technically, the ridable Pokemon feature was introduced in Pokemon X & Y, although I will say that I feel it wasn’t implemented very well there. Also, the amount of times you could ride a Pokemon was limited at best. Now, however, it seems as if you can ride a Pokemon in many places. In the Demo, we were introduced to Tauros Charge. Now, that’s pretty cool, but with PokeRide, which seems to be the official name for this feature, there is rumour that HMs will be completely scrapped in favour of riding the Pokemon. This would make life a lot easier, so I’m all for it. No more useless Strength HM on your team getting you to the Elite 4!
Or worse yet, Flash.
Of course, we’ve had Mega Evolutions now. That was a massive thing when it was introduced, however it appears that the focus has now shifted away from Mega Evolutions. Instead, we’re moving towards Z-Moves. This allows you to capture specific Pokemon, get a Z-Crystal and use a Z-Move. Think of this like a super powered attack, which really changes the way you play, as you can only use one Z-Move in combat. These are a very effective way to get a lot of extra power out of your Pokemon… So I wonder if any/many legendaries will have their own Z-Moves. Considering Pikachu get’s Gigavolt Havoc, which is an Electric attack with a base damage of 160, you can expect legendaries to get in on the fun!
Trials are a brand new feature to Pokemon Sun & Moon, which allows you to effectively do something a little bit different. It seems that instead of gym leaders, we will be getting Trials (Although this isn’t confirmed). I’m excited to see where they go with these, but one trial in the demo allows you to take pictures of Dragon type Pokemon, then battle them immediately afterwards. Other trials include catching plenty of Pokemon within an allotted area. Who knows what else we’ll see?
Totem Pokemon and Alolan Forms
Since I just mentioned the Trials, there are these special events called Totem Pokemon. These are souped-up, typically larger versions of Pokemon of the same species. They act as a sort of “boss battle” for a trial. It’s worth at least checking this out before we decide how we feel about them, as these guys can spawn in other Pokemon by their side, effectively increasing the difficulty of the battle.
As well as Totem Pokemon, this is a very quick shout out to the Alolan forms of existing Pokemon. Things such as Diglet who get the cutest hairstyles and Exeggutor who… Grew. It’s all a little bit silly, but some of the designs like the above Marowak are very cool indeed. Plus, some of the memes of the new Alolan forms are hilarious.
So I mentioned there was something incredibly clever about the Pokemon Sun & Moon Demo. If you’ve not played it yet, what? If you have played it, you might (or might not) have noticed that different people talk about different events happening on different days. The first event I saw was next to the Pokemon Center. This event was a man who said you should speak to him “tomorrow” (I.E the 19th from when I downloaded it). So, I spoke to him on the 19th and lo and behold, his dialogue changed. This is an important build-up to the main game, which is allowing you to get items to build your value up before the new games are released.
So whilst the demo has been an incredibly good way to draw attention to the new games in the franchise, they also are a great way for gamers to get ready for the new titles. So in the coming weeks, I hope to find more secrets and I hope to actually understand who the heck the Mysterious Man is! As always, let us know what you think in the comments below, or over on Facebook, Twitter and Reddit. What do you like and dislike about the new titles in the franchise? Do you hate the fact the series is breaking it’s mould, or do you, like me, think it’s a good thing that they are trying completely new features? As always, you are the final verdict on these matters.
*Yes, yes, very good, Pokemon Green was before. Stop it. Don’t you dare click this link.