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SPOILERS: Best Main Pokemon Game of the 3DS Era?

Best Main Pokemon Game of the 3DS Era?

  • X and Y

    Votes: 18 19.6%
  • Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire

    Votes: 31 33.7%
  • Sun and Moon

    Votes: 19 20.7%
  • Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon

    Votes: 15 16.3%
  • All of them suck

    Votes: 9 9.8%

  • Total voters
    92
The Best Gym Leader
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My personal opinion is that GF have simply lowered the bar in the 3D era of Pokemon, compared to the 2D era. And we, the hardcore Pokemon fans who witnessed the glorious and content rich 2D era, are just expecting Game Freak to raise the bar back to its former height.

The problem is that I am not sure GF lowered the quality bar on purpose. More likely, they are just not able to make as much game content per game in 3D, as they used to make in their 2D games (GBC and mainly GBA/DS era).
 
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Fluffy!
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Several of the things I want now are things I wanted to see in the Pokemon games as a kid, so I wouldn't say people just outgrew the series. It's possible that this is true for some people, but I'm sure a lot of adult fans just want to see their childhood dreams come true as we move to more powerful systems that open up more possibilities.

I don't mean to be disrespectful, but the "you outgrew the series" argument is very similar to "it's made for kids", which is often used to dismiss critique and suggestions from older fans. It's not like people suddenly forget what things they liked or wanted as kids when they become adults.
 
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My personal opinion is that GF have simply lowered the bar in the 3D era of Pokemon, compared to the 2D era. And we, the hardcore Pokemon fans who witnessed the glorious and content rich 2D era, are just expecting Game Freak to raise the bar back to its former height.

The problem is that I am not sure GF lowered the quality bar on purpose. More likely, they are just not able to make as much game content per game in 3D, as they used to make in their 2D games (GBC and mainly GBA/DS era).
the only thing the shift to 3D has likely had an impact on would be the likelihood of another PWT, although its existence can largely be attributed to the fact that much of the sprite work was done anyways so 3D alone isn't really an explanation.

if the shift to 3D were an issue, USUM would've looked different. for a game that pulled virtually everything from its predecessor, it added very little in terms of new areas. well aware of the desire for a Battle Frontier, it wouldn't have been a deal-breaking amount of work to implement. the reality though is that previous games used content as a way of padding out the fact that they couldn't reasonably rely on people being able to connect. prior to the DS you had to be physically present with people and even with the DS due to its limited WiFi encryption methods they couldn't really count on everyone being able to connect.

this naturally changes with the 3DS which supports the most (if not all? don't remember off the top of my head) modern WiFi encryption and given that the eLandscape of the 3DS era is much different from the DS era (ie., internet is pretty much everywhere), sort of 'fluff' content used to pad out the games become less necessary; battle, trade, connect, whatever, with others and not just the AIs. bonus points for also wanting to push VGC as well.

Several of the things I want now are things I wanted to see in the Pokemon games as a kid, so I wouldn't say people just outgrew the series. It's possible that this is true for some people, but I'm sure a lot of adult fans just want to see their childhood dreams come true as we move to more powerful systems that open up more possibilities.

I don't mean to be disrespectful, but the "you outgrew the series" argument is very similar to "it's made for kids", which is often used to dismiss critique and suggestions from older fans. It's not like people suddenly forget what things they liked or wanted as kids when they become adults.
the arguments really aren't that similar, but okay.

the reality is that there are plenty of people who will have moved on from the series, that the series just doesn't tickle their fancy, but for whatever reason take to the internet to bemoan how yet again the newest game is an uninspiring story of a linear romp through the region of Whateverlandia. think of people who think the glory days of pokemon were gen 1-2, then apply it to gens 3-4 instead.
 
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Please remember this thread is for discussing the best game of the 3DS era. We do support discussing many topics but please make sure to do do in the apropiate threads and if the thread does not exist then feel free to make it. :)
 
Lovely
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The poll shows a small sample size on one site of the vast internet, but ORAS is taking the win as of now.

I wonder how a world wide poll, or a national poll would turn out to be.
 
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If USUM didn't exist, I'd imagine that most if not all of its votes would go to SM. Counting them separately is a bit problematic.
 
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@godiego Well in that case, that's even more annoying. It means that even if they do have time to add the extra content, they are not willing to anymore.

They should keep in mind that not everybody prefers on line over off line.
 
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yes, little Cindy Lou Who's first game is immediately discarded: "linear trash game." the problem seems more to be that a small minority on the internet think they know what's best for the series without realizing that they maybe perhaps have simply outgrew the series. Nintendo's demo has pretty much always been family-friendly casual gaming; i'm not sure why people are expecting Pokemon to diverge from this.
You really shouldn't feel too bad about buying a Switch even if the Pokemon game turns out to be bad. There's so many other good games on the Switch that I'd be shocked if you can't find something else that you like on it.



Well they've always aimed the game at children but I don't think these are issues that only adults care about. The problem seems to be more that Game Freak doesn't understand the difference in preferences between mobile gamers and handheld/console gamers. They're looking at how successful mobile is and thinking every game should be like it to be successful. It doesn't really work that way. There are likely kids that are buying Switches, but those kids probably expect to be wowed similarly to how we do even if they can't fully articulate how and why. They're probably thinking something along the lines of "Wow, BotW looks so big and cool, I want to see a game like it" and would experience similar disappointment when Pokemon doesn't compare to that themselves. It's simple enough a concept that a kid could probably feel the same way. So even if Game Freak does ignore older fans I don't think kids on the Switch will be much kinder to them. The kind of audience that would appreciate the direction Game Freak has gone lately exists more on mobile, not on dedicated gaming devices like 3DS or Switch.
Oh yeah I've enjoyed botw oddesy and pokken on it so far and I plan to pick up the world ends with you since I never played it. But anyway that logic probably works for them since the 3ds is also portable, altough when you buy a console you except console games even if it's a handheld. When you buy a phone you expect to call/text and play some games (also YouTube alot of YouTube) but they're not meant to be major competitive games so I that's my problem with gf. Now with the switch they can't use that excuse, if someone shelled out 300 dollars for a console they expect the qaulity of the games to match the console so here's hoping they change their mind, they already admitted they were wrong about the switch. Didn't the guy say they thought they couldn't compete with the phone games and that switch would fail based on that?

yes, little Cindy Lou Who's first game is immediately discarded: "linear trash game." the problem seems more to be that a small minority on the internet think they know what's best for the series without realizing that they maybe perhaps have simply outgrew the series. Nintendo's demo has pretty much always been family-friendly casual gaming; i'm not sure why people are expecting Pokemon to diverge from this.
For me I never cared about a linear game story but Pokemon did used to be about exploration while raising your team I think that's how I always viewed it as a kid. Now kids with the switch have botw where they had total freedom, they buy Pokemon switch and get a linear region with a bunch of stupid road blocks (imo that stoutland girl will always be the worst like how is this a legit reason I can't explore the town, this little girl does not own these streets push her aside, the touros didn't make sense either. How about I go over and catch the thing and end this nonsense I've never been afaird of fighting a torous before lol)
And see just how terrible that linear feeling is.
 
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If USUM didn't exist, I'd imagine that most if not all of its votes would go to SM. Counting them separately is a bit problematic.
I do think that the existence of USUM has only hurt Sun and Moon's reputation. Even as an expanded version, it caused more problems than reducing them.
 
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To all who complain about post game in the 3DS era...I just going to leave this here :whistle:

Pokémon All Games Gameplay Time

The whole series has never been this good in 'post game'. Between almost 16 games (counting the double versions as just one game) only 6 had a really extensive post game.

Also, most of those who complain about the post game in the current games didn't even play it properly in the past games.
Most of the fanbase didn't even play the Battle Frontier in Emerald, although surprisingly almost 100% of it complain about the BF absence in ORAS. Most of these people didn't even complete the Maison to start with...

Fans have the right to complain about the absence of whatever they want, whether they would play it or not. But judging a game based on post game is a bad argument, even more if it is about the Pokémon series, in which more than half of the games had a small 'post game'.

Just sayin

What I have come to realize is that they are just refining the post game, and not diminishing it like many mistakenly think. It is ironic that one of the games that the fans most complain about 'lack of post game' is also one of the games that fans most spent hours playing, everyone knows whats the game I'm talking about...and it was also my vote for the best 3ds era game.
 
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While the average playtime of the games is interesting to look at, it doesn't really say much to me. It also doesn't seem to include things like Secret Bases or the Sinnoh underground. Activities like the Pokeathlon can be played for many hours if you have a group of friends.

The ideal post-game to me is one that has variety so it doesn't cater to only one specific type of players. The eras of GBA and DS did this fairly well. You certainly can't please everyone, but it's worth trying to cover most possibilities. Battle Frontier, Secret Bases, Contests, Pokestar Studios, Sinnoh Underground etc. offer different types of activities. Even the first entry games of a generation like RS or DP had a fair amount of variety. Admittedly, BW's wasn't as good in terms of activities like those. I don't remember much from FRLG.

What does XY offer besides some battle facilities? The Pokemon-amie mini games, I guess. ORAS did better but it's was a remake so it already had a solid base to work with. SM didn't do as well, but USUM did well by adding things like side quests, Mantine Surfing, Alola Photo Club etc.

Therefore, I wouldn't call it refining the post-game when they are removing variety. If the post-game in the Pokemon games had always been just battle facilities then we wouldn't have so many complaints. However, Game Freak has shown us that they are capable of designing and implementing fun content and activities that isn't related to battling and capturing only.

This thread isn't purely about post-game, though. I personally didn't vote purely based on post-game content but also the story, characters, features and more. I could write an essay detailing my choices and opinions of each 3DS game, including the good and the bad, but let's not. :ROFLMAO:

Side note:
I actually spent several hours playing the Battle Frontier in Emerald, and I'm not a big fan of battle facilities. The Frontier was fun even for someone like me. The only reason I didn't get to play the Battle Frontier in HGSS/Pt much was because I was moving away for college and it was a busy period. I had to finish Soulsilver and Platinum after Black (exploring a new region will always take priority for me!).

I do think there are people that exaggerate when it comes to the lack of a Battle Frontier in ORAS and many probably never played it. Alas, HGSS set the bar pretty high in terms of remakes. ORAS was good, but we know it could have been better, that's all.
 
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Where I spent most of my post-game time (excluding extra exploration/stories):
RGBY: nah
GSC: beating Red until I got bored
RS: nothing much
FRLG: can't remember
Emerald: Battle Factory. Oh god that place is awesome. The rest of the battle facilities kept kicking me out for being too weak.
DP: The Underground. THE UNDERGROUND. Never underestimate the joy of digging for treasure. I spent hours digging, burying, digging, digging... gosh, I could make Steven proud with my pile of Spheres :D
Platinum: Battle Factory. For fricks despite the hax I LOVED this place. Probably the only place I actually got 50 wins.
HGSS: Pokethalon and beating Red. Bug Catching contest.
BW: nah
B2W2: WAY TOO MANY ACTIVITIES TO COUNT. But I always remembered to go on Ferris Wheel dates with Curtis everyday.
XY: Battle Maison. Collecting clothes.
ORAS: Contests, Maison, Secret Bases.
SM: Battle. Freaking. Hax-to-the-Max. Tree.
USUM: My 2DS needs a new battery so I haven't touched my game after catching UB Burst and you know what? I'm not really missing the game.
 
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I do wish there was an option to like all of the games, but at the moment, I think I'll go with Sun/Moon. While I enjoyed US/UM for its new features, different Pokemon available and storyline for Hau, I think I liked Sun/Moon a bit more. It was more refreshing and exciting to go through Alola the first time, the storyline worked a bit better for me, Team Skull is wonderful and Lillie's development gave her departure a lot of emotional weight to it. The Alola region itself is beautiful and the Island Challenge was a lot more fun and challenging than I initially expected. Plus, I have a lot new favorite Pokemon from just this generation, so that does give Sun/Moon a bit of an edge for me as well.

For second place, I think it might be a tie between OR/AS and US/UM. OR/AS offered a lot of great features, some of which I still miss like the Dex Navi, it was fun to go through an updated Hoenn and they were really solid remakes. US/UM, despite being a set of traditional third version games, were really fun. Having different teams made it more fun to explore Alola again, I absolutely loved Hau's development and there is a lot more to explore in the post storyline. A part of me is almost tempted to give the edge to OR/AS due to how good it was, but I liked US/UM and I think that they're pretty fun games too. The fact that I'm still having fun exploring wormholes and working on my teams also makes me think that I like US/UM more than just second least favorite game of the 3DS era. I might change my mind later on after more time has passed from getting US/UM, but I do like it quite a bit, so I'm fine with having two sets of games as a tie here.

X/Y would be my least favorites of this era. The rivals were so bland, Team Flare was really boring until near the end of the games and AZ felt like such an afterthought that getting his Floette didn't really work for me. Even so, I still liked exploring through Kalos, raising the then new Pokemon was really fun and neither the region or the game itself felt incomplete to me. At worst, I'd say that X/Y were lackluster, but because I still had fun with the games, I still liked them. While I do want good characters, storylines and game plays when I go through a video game, at the end of the day, I just want to have fun and be happy. If a game can still make me happy in spite of its flaws, then it's doing something right in my book. It doesn't completely negate all of the problems a game can have, but I think it can help to make me enjoy a video game more with that in mind even with its problems.

I'll have to take more time to think of how I feel about the 3DS era compared with the past entries. I'm still not sure where I'd rank even just the seventh generation among the other games, but I thought that most of the games introduced on the 3DS were pretty good and enjoyable. They all had their fair share of problems, but I still liked exploring the different regions, making new teams and going through the storylines. I'm pretty happy with how the games turned out for the most part.
 
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Most of the fanbase didn't even play the Battle Frontier in Emerald, although surprisingly almost 100% of it complain about the BF absence in ORAS.
I reckon the teaser statue had something to do with that..."We're building this cool new challenge that you'll never get to play!".... :/ Not the greatest post-game reward for anyone, old or new.

I can agree that the post-game shouldn't be such a big factor in criticizing the series (and I think that XY in particular did enough to make up for it's shortcomings in that area). But it's never fun losing gameplay elements in such a way.
 
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I wrote a response, but it ended up long (of course) and I wanted to say something else before posting it:

The "episodes" during the 3DS lifecycle have been fantastic. I think a true RPG that was episodic like the post-games have been, ones that took place over an entire region and expanded the mythology, would be fantastic. They are clearly talented at creating engaging stories like the Delta episode and I think the series would be best served with episodes as the main game and the gym leaders and Elite 4 as post game content. Maybe the gym leaders are at similar strengths so you could take them on in whatever order. Or even have them serve a role similar to Black and White, but much deeper where they allow you to challenge them after their episode is complete. There are various ways of doing it, but I really think having an open region where the story entices players rather than forcing them would be freeing for everyone involved. Even if that means revisiting an old region for inspiration. Whatever it takes to get more flying into space versus a random NPC blocking route entrances and winking at you. That's one of the things I loved about Delta and my experience with the finale of White 2. The world could be ending and you can just walk away and return to the story when you're ready. No harm done.
 
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I know my answer as of this moment, but it's changing. For now:

Sun and Moon

I loved the enhanced overworld graphics that made me feel like I was actually on an island adventure in the Pokemon world, something that didn't originally happen with XY. I loved the story, even with all of its handholding. Really, I think Lillie is a great character and Lusamine is a fantastic villain. I get that she was passive, but there were so many details that were fully realized. A lot of characters in Pokemon dress in over the top, stylized clothing. With Alola, they scaled that back considerably until Aether. Except with Lillie. She is this typical cartoon character designed to be appealing. Yet that is exactly the point, as her mother dressed her to sell an image. We see her running away from home and living with Kukui, yet she still dresses exactly as her mother taught her to. It's not until toward the end that she goes shopping and ties her hair into a ponytail that she finally allows herself to be free and move beyond Lusamine's manipulations.

It's that attention to detail that makes Sun and Moon feel so alive. Add that to the weird ways you find some of the new Pokemon, like chasing down a wimpod on the shores, and it's become one of my favorite Pokemon experiences.

The problem with Gen VII is that it isn't enough as a region to feel like you're exploring. Instead it feels like planned activities. It's a vacation. That's not a bad thing and personally, I'm thoroughly satisfied. However, I can't fault anyone who just can't get into them. I think the biggest issue is one of timing. Following XY, a lot of people wanted something more substantial. ORAS was a taste of it, but it's still a Gen VI game and I think Gen VI had an issue of scale. Mainly, the 3D models and loading screens suddenly made the world feel compromised in a way it hadn't before. Though previous generations were sprite based, everything still felt cohesive and to scale. When they attempted to recreate that, the world suddenly felt small and exaggerated. I remember the deflation I felt after being excited to ride around on Mega Latias and then slowly realizing how bad everything looked. It was an interesting idea, but it took away some of the immersion.

Gen VII mostly fixed that, but there's a reason it's not as expansive of a region as others. I think what possibly hurt Gen VI as well, were the cuts to higher quality graphics in battles and cutscenes. I remember finally getting to Kyogre in AlphaSapphire and it switched to a cutscene of Brendan and the cave rumbling with completely different models. Suddenly everything felt right and in proportion to what was happening. Then it ended and everything felt like cardboard cutouts in comparison. I realize past games did this as well, but in those games it would return to a 2D environment that could showcase scale, whereas ORAS went from one 3D environment to another. Sun and Moon got about as close as they could to that cinematic style with Alola's overworld so I never felt that sharp disconnect. (Well, graphically. What the hell was that smile the main character always had?) But that just exposed how limited the hardware is. I'm actually very sad we never got a Sprite based 3D Pokemon game as sprites look amazing with the 3DS. I'm still mad at Nintendo for not making more 3D classics.

Now. After all of that I'm finally going back to Pokemon X. I have to say it is a much better game than I remember. Sure, team flare is incidental, but it really does feel like a varied region. The cartoonish models allow for some really grandiose architecture and shots I'd forgotten about. It never feels as organic as Sun and Moon at their best, but I can at least look at it and appreciate the art and design that went into it. There are so many references to Unova, too. The more I play, the more I'm starting to believe my crack theory that XY were originally built for the Wii U and then overhauled to work for the 3DS, with Black and White being the original 3DS flagship entry. I just think about the abyssal ruins and how they feel incomplete. Apparently one of the movies might have an answer to that, but I'm not sure if that was just the anime doing its own thing or what.

Really, though, the thing that's helped me the most is finally having a (used) New 3DS XL. I'm coming from a launch day 3DS and the difference is stupefying. I actually use the 3D now and *want* to use it! I can't believe Nintendo released a product without the stabilization and massively larger viewing angle. Plus the larger screen really did end up helping me appreciate the details in the game. I love this system so much and I never thought I'd love a 3DS the way I did my original DS, but here we are.

TL;DR Nah just skip it I'm rambling haha
 
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I think it is quite shocking how USUM is the least voted here. It was advertised as the "ULTRA" game, and the peak of their entire 3DS game development. Yet it is the least voted.

Ok, I get that we are less favorable to this whole "third version" formula, but still, I can´t imagine Emerald or Platinum losing a poll to RS and DP respectively. Yet here we see that SM is beating USUM.
 
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I still enjoy ORAS over SM or USUM. Gen 6 is actually up there for my favorite generation, XY were great games too despite feeling a little incomplete, ORAS is my favorite game right now and I recently did an AS speedrun and started playing OR with friends who have ORAS also. I’ll be the first to admit I’m just a nostalgia freak though. Ruby was my first game but I lost that game years ago, OR is the second coming of my first game. I give ORAS a 9/10 because of no Battle Frontier, really crappy move to put the model there and not the actual thing. Emerald is still one of my favorite games just for the Frontier.
 
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I think it is quite shocking how USUM is the least voted here. It was advertised as the "ULTRA" game, and the peak of their entire 3DS game development. Yet it is the least voted.

Ok, I get that we are less favorable to this whole "third version" formula, but still, I can´t imagine Emerald or Platinum losing a poll to RS and DP respectively. Yet here we see that SM is beating USUM.
For me, it's because they had A+ ideas that weren't fully developed. Ultra Megalopolis in the trailer looks amazing and so cinematic. And it is... For the five minutes you spend there. And it came at the cost of some great character beats. Losing Lillie on the island hurt. I get that she needed to be there for RR, but they could have found a way for a version of both. I think another major issue is that instead of the ultimate version, it felt like an expanded version. And I don't mean that as in it has more. I mean that it feels like you're playing the same game with slightly different characters prioritized. In that sense, it feels like both games are necessary to have a complete take on Gen VII. But the games are too similar and don't offer both legendaries. Black 2 and White 2 at least offered you the other dragon, and a completely new story to justify dual second versions. What is the justification for only one box legendary when the Ultra Megalopolans seem to have access to many? Continuing with that thought, before Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon were released, we were told that while we could get the opposite game, getting the Ultra of whatever version we already played would make the most sense. I'm going to disagree and say if anyone wants both, they should get the opposite version to at least encounter new Pokemon. An exclusive Ultra Beast isn't enough compared to the other Pokemon you'd gain.

The justifications for separate versions don't really hold up when you compare them to combined third versions and especially fall flat when compared the dual Black 2/White 2. I get that the games are 12 hours apart. Split the difference. There's already a midday Lycanroc that was added. Why not take inspiration from that and rearrange the game in that way? Have 2 Nebbies with one having the old personality and one having a new one that causes Lillie to change how her character develops. That one is more complicated, but it's not the only option for getting both legendaries in the game. There's a whole second altar that could have used a plot.

Ultra Sun and Moon do the weirdest thing in that they make both versions feel incomplete. Add Hau's arc into Sun and Moon and it would be better. Finish Lillie's while keeping Gladion's extension and it would feel like an upgrade. As it is, both fall short of the other, and the more
involved story makes a second Alola play through less engaging. I honestly can't say which version I'd recommend to someone who hadn't picked up Gen VII.
 
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I honestly regret not buying Ultra Sun after seeing how little the story and the version exclusive stuff changed. Though preferably I wish I hadn't bought Ultra Moon at all. I don't think USUM are terrible games, but I feel like I wouldn't have missed out on anything if I had skipped them. The cinematic trailer convinced me to buy Ultra Moon, thinking we'll actually get to explore some of the Ultra Space but what we got is very little to be worth the cost. The USUM content really feels like something that should have been a DLC.

With that said, I would probably recommend USUM to someone who hasn't played any Gen VII games yet due having more content such as Mantine Surfing and the side quests. I would recommend SM to someone who is interested in the story more than the content, though. SM's story needed some fine tuning, but it's a fairly complete story and most characters got some sort of closure. The changes USUM made left us with incomplete character arcs or character actions that made little to no sense. The climax was a joke, too.

USUM should have been better than SM in every way, since it's the same base game but with more content, and yet USUM failed to do that. They are not sequels to excuse story shortcomings or content that feels unfinished. Game Freak literally had a decent game that they only needed to expand upon in order to turn it into a great game. USUM even removed content (Beast Lusamine, Looker/UB post-game story) in order to add something else. I don't think Lusamine's character arc and the Looker post-game quest really interfered with Necrozma and the RR episode. There are ways they could have incorporated everything. The Looker quest even provided us with expansion for Nanu's, Anabel's and Looker's characters. They might be minor characters, but it's a shame not to have that in USUM.
 
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