I really can’t get over how much Pokemon White does not want me to play it.
I’m trying to get past my early frustration with how much this game is about reading and hand-holding. I really am. I’ve never played a game like this, and my nature is getting in the way as I navigate this world. Wow. Look at that sentence. It’s only been a couple of days and already the game is starting to dictate the way I construct sentences. Conspiracy alert.
Here’s the thing. I had a moment a few game-hours ago when it seemed like Pokemon White was going to force me to think. A moment when I literally sat up in my chair and focused on my DS fully. My feet came down off my desk and everything. This moment came when I finally found my first gym leader. It took me forever to find that guy, and when I finally did he dismissed me by saying, basically, that I had chosen the wrong Pokemon as my first Pokemon. I had chosen a fire-type Pokemon, and that was going to mean trouble for me in matching up with him in the gym. Match-ups? Whoa. It’s bracket-time, ladies and gentlemen. You start me thinking about match-ups and you’ve got my attention. The possibility of having to strategize quickly wiped away my earlier frustration.
Now the game is going to challenge me. I smile, thinking to myself, It’s on. It’s on like Donk–
After the jump, it’s off
I’m kind of getting into the gameplay here, such as it is. I’m not trying to be snarky with that statement. Not overly anyway. The gameplay so far is just slightly better than a Facebook game’s. Actually, not even that considering I’ve just starting playing a FB game that has far better gameplay than this does, so far. That’s right. I said it. I’m playing a Facebook game that’s better than this classic Nintendo title. But I digress.
As I said, I’m getting into this. I’m starting to understand the training construct. I’m starting to feel protective of my little Pokemons. Starting to feel proud of them as well. They’re leveling up and learning new things. Now the gym leader tells me that I’ve chosen the wrong “type” of Pokemon and a whole new door suddenly opens in my mind. I have a fire-type Pokemon. He is going to have trouble matching up against water-type Pokemons. I think. I’m not sure yet. But as I collect other Pokemons, I’m going to have to consider this. As I go into battle against other trainers, and against gym leaders, I’m going to have to consider how choose which of my Pokemons to fight, and which of them to switch out from the top left position to maximize their IP. Suddenly there’s so much to consider here.
Then I make my fatal mistake. Reading. Again with the reading.
Leaving the gym after earning my first gym badge, I engage a little dude. He talks to me, as all of these little dudes do. Sometimes they say nonsense. Most of the time they spout redundancies. This guy kneecapped my budding excitement.
“I think it’s all right to move ahead with Pokemon you’ve trained well, even without thinking about type matchups.”
My thumb freezes, suspended above the B button. What?
I just spent a good amount of time running around Striaton City, including multiple trips into the Dream World section of town, trying to find the right type Pokemon. I’d just sat up straight, certain I’d found my way into the challenge of the game. And with one random encounter the game has essentially told me not to worry about it. There’s nothing to play here folks, move along.