I have had such a wonderful time with Pokémon Violet and Scarlet. None of the issues that I have with these games are anything but the most mild and forgivable irritations. Meanwhile, the promise of a big but blissfully uncomplicated world, filled with adventure and monsters to collect, brought me right back to what drew me into the whole Pokémon franchise in the first place. Is Scarlet and Violet a technical mess? Sure. Do I care? Not in the slightest. I’m here for the pokémon. Not to count frames.
Despite any gripes about the performance, I really think that this generation gets a lot of things right and I feel confident in future games if they continue in this direction. The battles are as good now as they were in Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue all those years ago, and somehow capturing Pokémon has become even more addicting. The ability to tackle what you want to do first and in which order to do them is a great addition to the formula. Pokémon was always destined to become a fully open-world game at some point, and Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet demonstrate a very good effort to achieve just that.
The huge expansion and changes to the single player campaign are great, the size of the world and the joy of exploration are the best in the series, and the new Pokemon and battle mechanics introduced all sing. However, it’s just impossible to shake the thought of how much better the game would feel if it was on more powerful hardware, or simply ran acceptably on Switch.
There are some mechanics that ultimately feel gimmicky, but Scarlet and Violet's storytelling and exploration feel like the breath of fresh air the franchise desperately needed. More than anything, I have hope for how eventual DLC might be able to improve the overall experience or how Game Freak can learn from its mistakes to create an even more memorable experience in the future.
Pokemon Scarlet and Violet have some excellent ideas that push the franchise in a fresh direction, but they’re unfortunately bogged down by unacceptable performance problems at every single turn. While my biggest problems with the games could theoretically be addressed in future patches, I’m not sure how feasible that is given the capabilities of the Switch’s hardware. That said, there is still a lot to enjoy, but it’s hard imagining that these games will have wide appeal outside of the dedicated Pokemon fans that are willing to put up with the issues and inconvenience.
Playing with friends, coming up with battle strategies, and catching Pokemon are the most entertaining activities in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. Unfortunately, the bland open world and technical problems weigh down what could have otherwise been another exceptional main series Pokemon game experience. The bones are here to build something special, so hopefully future Pokemon games do the concept of an open-world Pokemon game justice.
A square wheel spins more smoothly and fluidly than this game. If three Pokémon or characters come into view at once, the whole game creaks and falters. Edge-off unplayable. And that's a shame. Because the addition of an open world is "on paper" a puffy idea to refresh the franchise. No more linear walking that takes you past gyms and ever stronger and different Pokémon, gotta catch 'em all. You can go wherever you want. With some tactics, you can take on some very tough challenges with Pokémon that aren't nearly strong enough. Fun! Except this game just wasn't ready. It's shameless that Nintendo and Game Freak are still throwing it on the market. Nevertheless: 10 million games sold in just three days.
As far as Pokémon games go it was fun. The school setting was brilliant, the characters are some of the most memorable to me since Gen IV, and the setting of Paldea is probably one of my most favorite Pokémon regions. The 3 main questlines, and free roaming of the map is also a welcome change over the old stories that were more linear. I liked the new Pokémon as well. The battling is fun as usual, and I love that all the Pokémon are running around in the world.
When I think about it, I really like the game, but it's held back by some really aggravating choices by the developers. Chief among these issues is the graphics, they are terrible. Character and Pokemon models are generally fine, but most of the textures are downright awful, characters and pokemon really close to you walk at like 5 FPS and the pop in is obnoxious. I actually think SwSh had better graphics than S/V, or at least they were more consistent and the issues less noticeable. A lot of people complained about FPS drops and bugs but neither of these were much of a problem for me. I never experienced a crash, and the FPS drops were noticeable but never lasted for very long and didn't impact my enjoyment of the game. When I see games like TOTK, Xenoblade Chronicles 3, DQXIS, etc. running on the Switch and looking great, it really makes me angry that this game looks so bad and has such obvious graphical problems.
I also wished they incorporated the Legends Arceus style of catching and battling, as that was more fast paced and fun. It's another aggravating decision by the developers, as the technology already exists and has already been applied to another Pokemon game and proven to work... it's just strange that they didn't add it to this game.
So yeah, I actually really enjoy this game, but I can't give it more than a 7 with all the obvious cut corners that the development team made to get it out. It's a fun game, no doubt held back by executives pushing tight release windows on the development team. 7/10
From Pokemon designs to lackluster and boring open world, to irritating performance issues, and lack of battle tower... Such a downgrade even from Sword and Shield, which had already leaned on the lower side.
SummaryThe Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet games, the newest chapters in the Pokémon series, are coming to Nintendo Switch. With these new titles, the Pokémon series takes a new evolutionary step, allowing you to explore freely in a richly expressed open world. Various towns blend seamlessly into the wilderness with no borders. You'll be ab...