Posted in Gaming, Nintendo Switch, Pokemon

Pokemon Quest – Quick Review

I hesitate to call this a “review” because it’s more of a “this is what this game is about” sort of thing. Overall, I find it enjoyable, though not incredibly deep, and will probably keep playing it casually. If nothing else, it’s been giving me a reason to pick up my Switch and enjoy it in hand-held mode, which isn’t something I’ve done much in the past.

What is it?

Pokemon Quest is a cute mobile game that was released on the Switch earlier this week, and will be coming to mobile devices soon. It’s called a “free to start” game, which means you don’t have to pay anything to play it as is, but you can expect there to be mobile aspects, like timers that limit what you do.

So far, the timers don’t bother me much. I’ve gotten used to these sorts of things with mobile games, I suppose. I rarely spend money on mobile games, and Pokemon Quest is not going to be any different. I haven’t seen any real pressing need to open my wallet as this is just a casual thing I pick up a couple times a day.

How does it play?

So yeah. There are Pokemon, though they have a distinct rounded cube shape. I thought this might be a turn-off at first, but I got used to it quickly. Turns out to be pretty cute.

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You set up base on an island, where your main goal is to find the loot. Not kidding. Even the game tells you it’s all about the loot. I haven’t really found loot yet. I have found Pokemon, though.

You enlist the help of these Pokemon, which you mostly attract by cooking dishes of items you gather while your Pokemon explores areas (similar to Breath of the Wild).

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Game play is pretty simple and straightforward. You build a team of Pokemon. You send them to areas on the map. These areas are marked with a number that indicates the difficulty. If team also has a number that indicates the strength of the team. Usually (not always, but usually) my team doesn’t have much of a problem beating down a place that’s lower than their strength number.

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The part that seems to turn the most folks off is the battle system. Basically, your Pokemon move towards the enemies on their own. You can tap some buttons to make them use their skills, to make them scatter, and to fall back. But that’s really about it.

To be honest, I just leave my team on Auto-Attack almost 100% of the time and do something else while they’re battling. Usually, they’re just fine. This doesn’t bother me at all… I’m used to having mobile games that auto-battle for me after spending so much time playing FF Record Keeper.

It might sound bad, but I prefer letting the game play the fights for me. I enjoy the team building, training, decorating, cooking and setting up stones on my Pokemon more than the battle elements.

Oh yeah. Stones.

As you clear areas and beat bosses, you get stones that enhance your Pokemon’s strength and health. There are also stones with special attributes, such as letting you use skills faster, and the like. Also, some areas on the map indicate that certain types of Pokemon (Water, Fire, Bug, etc) are stronger there… So there’s a little bit of strategy in building a team, picking Pokemon right for the area, and developing those Pokemon.

For example, I got an Onix early on that’s a beast of a tank. I mean, a walking wall. I’ve only seen him defeated twice ever. Without him, I’m sure I couldn’t have gotten as far as I have at this point.

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Wrapping it up…

So, anyhow. I haven’t been playing many mobile games lately… I took a bunch of them off my phone not long ago, actually. So this game scratches that very casual collecting and gathering itch and has a pleasant Pokemon twist.

Just know that if you start it on the Switch, you won’t be able to transfer it to your mobile device later. A bit of a bummer, but I think I’ll keep mine on the Switch. The game is tiny and not hurting anything. That way, I don’t have something distracting me at work, and I continue to have a reason to pull out my Switch.

Have you tried it? What do you think of the new little side-game offering from Pokemon? 

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Posted in Gaming, Pokemon, Pokemon GO

Pokemon — Let’s Go!

Details were released yesterday about Pokemon: Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee. It seems to be a 3D sorta-kinda-remake of Pokemon Blue-Red-Yellow with some Pokemon Go elements and a drop-in multiplayer feature.

The response was a bit mixed from what I’ve seen. The Pokemon pureists groaned about seeing their beloved RPG series tainted by Pokemon Go. And some folks, me included, just saw it as a fun spin-off of the series with some neat overlap with Pokemon Go.

The pureists were somewhat pacified with the announcement that a new generation core game is in the works for the Switch for 2019. This is awesome news, too. Hopefully that makes everyone happy.

As for me, though I picked up Pokemon Blue back when the game first released a looooong time ago, I find it hard to go back to play the old style Pokemon games. I tried. It takes an old Game Boy, a screen that’s hard to see, and batteries.

I never finished my copy of Blue. I adore Pikachu. I skipped last year’s release of Sun/Moon remake. I’ve been trying to get back into Pokemon Go. So, I could use a new Pokemon game.

Color me interested. I don’t really mind if they’ve made the game easier to make it more appealing to kids. And while I’m not the greatest at the Pokeball toss in Go, I can deal with it. I haven’t been buying many full-priced Switch games this year, so I went ahead and plopped my pre-order down for Let’s Go Pikachu on Amazon.

I also downloaded the new Pokemon Quest (haven’t played yet) and caught several Alola Exeggutors today. 😉

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Posted in Gaming, Mobile Gaming, Virtual Pets

Magikarp Jump

So I’ve been itching for a pet raising/breeding game lately. And while the new Magikarp Jump mobile app is not really that, it still seems to scratch that itch. Bonus points that it’s simple, cute, and doesn’t take a lot of my time up.

I’d been hearing about this around the net, and decided to download it yesterday. The idea is that there’s… well… here…

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So you come to Hoppy Town, where Mayor Karp wants to regain morale by winning the league. Not the Pokemon League. But the Magikarp jumping league.

See, about the only thing you can train Magikarp to do well is jump higher. So this is a game about doing just that, and then taking your trained Magikarp to the league to challenge other NPC trainers to see who jumps the highest.

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The Pond and Food

Your Magikarp gets their own little pond where food slowly rains down. You tap the food to feed them.

Each type of food increases their JP (Jump Points) by a different amount. You can buy different types of food as your trainer ranks up, and you can actually rank up the individual food types by coins that you earn through playing the game.

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You can also buy decorations and themes for your pond. Decorations can have different bonus effects, such as bonus experience for your Magikarp, or your own trainer levels.

Leveling System

I’ve been talking about leveling, but how does that work?

You have two types of leveling going on: your Trainer rank and your Magikarp’s level.

You gain more Trainer ranks as you win battles and successfully retire your Magikarps. Each time your Trainer rank rises, the max level your next generation of Magikarp can be raises.

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For example, at the start of the game, your first Magikarp is capped at level 11. Once he reaches that point, he must challenge the league and make it as far as he can. Once he can no longer beat the next opponent, he retires to a nice life in a retirement pond.

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Then, you’re allowed to fish up a new generation of Magikarp. However, since you’ve likely gained a few Trainer levels between now and then, your new Magikarp now maxes out at something like level 13 instead of level 11. And it keeps going up in that sort of cycle.

Training

Aside from food, another way to increase JP is to train your Magikarp. Here’s where the timed mobile app elements of the game comes in. You have a max number of training points (right now I have 3), which replenish over time.

Sometimes an event will give you a point back. When you gain a Trainer rank,  you get your training points back. And you can use items to get the points back.

So, if you’re impatient, yeah,  you can use real money to buy fake money to buy items to replenish your training points. But I honestly don’t see a reason to need to.

Patterns

Magikarp can come in a variety of colors and patterns. This is another one of the collectability features of this game. You even have a Dex to record the patterns you’ve found so far.

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I know that Shiny Magikarp exist as I’ve seen it mentioned online.

Overall

Overall, this is a cute little Pokemon pet game you can play whenever you have a little bit of time to waste. While there are in-app purchases, I don’t see it as being super tempting to me, and it’s not so in-your-face as to turn me off.

I left out a few details here and there so that if you decide to try the game, there would still be a lot of surprises to experience!

Posted in Gaming, Nintendo 3DS, Pokemon

Pokemon Sun: Story Complete!

I had what I like to call a bit of a hermit weekend (very little MMO gaming), which was a nice change of pace that allowed me to recharge. I also got a lot of stuff done around the house, and things done on single player games.

The first thing I wanted to tackle was to finish the story for Pokemon Sun. This has been a goal of mine since January, and while I was on the homestretch, I didn’t get any of it done last month. With the Switch coming out this Friday, I knew that I needed to finish this up before I get sidetracked by other Nintendo gaming (Zelda!), so I did.

I have to say that Sun had some pretty impressive cutscenes for a Pokemon game. I was already somewhat spoiled on what was going to happen, but it was still neat to see where the story went in the end.

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It took me 100+ hours to beat the game. But that’s mostly because I was dabbling around in breeding, trading, the Islands, and the Festival Plaza. I’d say that I got more than my money’s worth, and I still have more to do.

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The game instantly launched me into another storyline about capturing Ultra Beasts. I’ll get through that on my own time. Until then, I have a bunch of Pokemon I’m training for evolution on the Islands, and more to trade for. My Pokedex is 77% complete. So I still have a way to go, but I’m content on my progress overall.

I’m kicking around the idea of Pokemon Bank, which I don’t yet have an account with. Not so sure I want to transfer my Pokemon to Sun, though, since they get stuck there if you do.

Overall, Pokemon Sun was an enjoyable experience! Probably the Pokemon game I’ve liked most so far.

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Posted in Gaming, Pokemon GO

Pokemon GO: Ditto & Gen II Pokemon

It’s been about a month since I’ve seriously played Pokemon GO to any extent. I was mildly interested in the Valentine’s thing, but had other things on my mind at the time, so it passed me by.

I did know, however, that a few things were going on this week. First, Gen II Pokemon were released yesterday. This was the big thing everyone has been waiting for, naturally.

To go along with that, they also cut the cost of the Pokemon storage upgrade in half. Seeing I don’t have that many coins since I’m not a very competitive player, I was happy to pick up the first upgrade at 100 coins.

On my lunch break today, I decided to see what new Pokemon I could wrangle up. This was my first Gen II:

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What I found interesting here was rather than just needing candy to evolve, this Pokemon also requires a Sun Stone. Looking around, I read that these are new drops at Pokestops. I like this idea, as long as they aren’t too hard to get.

I then caught a:

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and a

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Then, something completely unexpected happened. I tapped on a Sentret with the thought of “Ooh, Gen II!” in mind. I noticed that it was kinda pink in color, but didn’t think much about it (I’m not super familiar with Gen II).

Turns out, Sentrets can be Dittos in disguise! And yes, this was my first Ditto, after all these months of Pidgies and Rattatas.

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The rest of my lunch break went like this:

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So there seems to be a pretty good selection of Gen II out there even in what you’d consider the “normal” spawns.

I also noticed the other week that the Sprint/Radio Shack store in our local mall now has a new Pokestop. This makes me super happy, because our mall was, strangely enough, a dead zone to Pokemon unless you were in the parking lot. This made no sense at all, and was super discouraging because I was looking for a cool place to walk at the end of last summer, and had to rule the mall out.

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Now, not only does it look like we have spawn there, but a Pokestop as well. I really need to start walking and catching Pokemon again!

Oh, I also noticed they significantly changed my trainer’s outfit!

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Posted in Gaming, Uncategorized

December Goals in Review

The end of 2016 is almost upon us. That’s pretty wild to think about. Some folks are ready to see the year go. I’m just trying to figure out how to do stuff differently next year. But that’s a post for another time. This is about my December gaming goals.

I’m posting this a little early because I foresee myself being busy the next few days (I’m visiting and roadtripping, and won’t be home until next week). I don’t think I’ll be hitting any more goals than what I already have for the month, so it’s all good.

What did I accomplish?

Games to Explore

  • Civ 6 ✓
  • Skyrim
  • No Man’s Sky ✓
  • Minecraft
  • Sims 4 ✓

I did pretty good on this. Poor Skyrim is falling by the wayside again, but I hope I can pick it up next year. Minecraft might actually get a bit more exploration since I did pick up the Wii U copy as well to bring along on my trip. 

Aside from that, I won my first round of Civ 6, started building a base in No Man’s Sky, and my Sims family have reached the top of their career. I’m aiming to get them that nice penthouse once they save enough simoleons.

I still have a lot I want to do in No Man’s Sky, but I also have a few new Steam games that I want to explore next year. I also want to get back on my Steam Challenge in 2017 and knock out some backlog games that have been hanging around for too long! 

Pokemon Sun

  • Complete 3rd Island ✓
  • Continue to fill Pokedex ✓

Yes! I did this! Despite being sucked into breeding and trading for the holidays.  

I actually just reached Poni Island last night in Pokemon Sun. While I still have a ways to go, I’m happy to say that my Alola Pokedex is sitting at  76% complete. I have three teams worth of Pokemon training in Pelago, either leveling to hit an evolution or leveling before I give them a stone to evolve. 

Final Fantasy XIV

  • Gear Dragoon ✓
  • Work (harder) on Dragoon Relic ✓
  • Level Monk ✓
  • Do Monk job quests ✓
  • Do Summoner job quests
  • Clean up old quests
  • Gear Summoner
  • Gain reputation with Sahagin

I’ve actually been taking a bit of a break from FFXIV this month, and it’s been a good thing. 

I finished gearing Zuri’s Dragoon with Scripture gear, and while I have worked on the Relic, I’m just not feeling motivated about it. Maybe waiting until the 3.5 patch, which is coming on January 17, to see if we’ve got any much-needed nerfs is the way to go for now. 

I have leveled Zuri’s Monk a bit – slowly coming up on 58 – but it’s not something I’ve worked really hard at achieving. I’d like to get it done before the end of January, though, because the Monk and Dragoon share end game accessories, so that would help clean up some inventory space. That’s really the only reason I level jobs anymore! 

I’ve really done nothing to gear up or advanced my Summoner. I just haven’t had that much interest in it, especially since Red Mage has been announced. I don’t know if Red Mage will share weapon stats with mages or with the other ranged DPS yet. So it’s hard to make plans for it. 

My poor old-skool beast tribe quests. Every month I just ignore them. Maybe now that I’m done working on getting Tomes for gear through beast tribes, I can focus on cleaning up the rest of them before Stormblood. 

I don’t know what kind of motivation I have for leveling my other jobs that are just hanging out there on Zuri. That level 50-60 grind is painful… and might ease up once the expansion comes. I have a level 30 Black Mage, level 32 Ninja, and two tanks hanging around in the 30s as well. I’ve not unlocked Astro or Dark Knight, and I’m not sure I have interest in unlocking them aside from just for completion sake.

Before Heavensward hit, I made a push to level all my crafting jobs to 50. So I might get the same itch with my battle classes this year. Maybe just to 50 so that once the expansion drops, they’ll be ready for the bonus experience. Who knows.

Right now, I haven’t decided whether I’m going to keep setting monthly goals for myself in 2017… but from the sound of it, I have a lot I still want to do!

 

Posted in Gaming, Uncategorized

Pokemon Go: SantaChu Get!

I finally got my Santa Pikachu tonight! I’ve been looking for days, but didn’t give up. Driving home from work, I was slowly driving past the local Target and saw one in the parking lot. I quickly pulled over and nabbed him!

He was a toughie, and took a few ultra balls to catch. I was getting a little worried he’d run away, but he didn’t! 🙂