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The Game Is Out, Time To Discuss

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I've got spurs that jingle jangle jingle
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So I got Sword for Christmas and have put a lot of hours into it. I just reached Hammerlocke (spent lots of time in the Wild Area). Thoughts so far under a spoiler tag.

*Wild Area is a cool idea that could be great with refinement. I enjoy exploring and being able to get Pokémon earlier that are usually restricted to late-game like Ice and Dragon types. Pop-in is an issue, though.
*Gyms so far are fun. Leaders are so far pretty easy as always, but the challenges are a bit more interesting than previous puzzles and the stadium factor gives a fun vibe to the Gym Leader battles.
*The game breaks really, really easily if you aren't careful. I avoid wild encounters a lot, especially in the wild zone, . I still felt overleveled up until around Milo but the enemies seem to be scaling closer to older games compared to me now. I've also had to save the XP candies--I only use them to pick up Pokémon that got left behind but you could over level with them quite easily. Similarly, Raids are fun but you get some very powerful TR's from them I've similarly been holding back on using.
*Dynamax...eh, I won't miss it when it's probably gone next gen. Seeing your Pokémon grow to kaiju size is a little enjoyable in a silly way but it feels unbalanced compared to Mega or Z-moves.
*I like the Max Raids so far but that might change when I get higher star ones and my NPC ally idiots mess things up.
*Rivals remind me of XY in terms of ease, though they have a bit more personality. Bede's the standard jerk so far who keeps losing because he can't grok type match-ups but still thinks he's some amazing trainer.
*The Galar Mines were pretty but too linear for my tastes.
*Camping is fun; I had my Raichu and my Nickit have a (one sided) race at one point and I love the role playing element.
*I'm not sure why berry growing is gone and I am very worried for when I try to salvage my team's EVs.
*The convenience factor of the Pokémon Center man who combines the name rater, move reminder, move deleter, and memory storage (I like that boxed 'mon can apparently hang out with each other) is great. I really hope he's in the series permanently.
 
Flame Trainer
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For a second I thought you said you got a Sword for Christmas which slightly worried me when you said you put a lot of hours into it.
To be fair, I wouldn’t object to an ornate Sword for Christmas, too bad we don’t celebrate it...
 
Son of Ares
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I once got a replica of the Master Sword for my birthday. Still need to find a way to displsy it along with my giant lego replica of the original Voltron (well, okay, it's not that big but it's still sizeable).
 
I've got spurs that jingle jangle jingle
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For some reason I've been ridiculously lucky.
I found two 1% appearance chance Eevee in route 4...and both were female.

Today I was hoping there'd be snow in the northern Wild Area so I could find a Sneasel, but no such luck. However, while going through checking dens my first 3 star raid turned out to be a Weavile.
I managed to catch it with Dux the Sir Fetch'd, then popped an IV calculator online.
Speed is 19-21, but everything else is at least 28 and potentially a full 31.
I'd read that Max Raids had some guaranteed perfect IVs, but do higher star ones also have high IVs in general? I plugged in a Trapinch I got in a 1 star earlier and it's IVs are overall pretty average other than max speed.
 
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I hope that there’s version exclusive and starter Max Raid events, though I doubt they’ll happen. It would be a nice way to get those Pokémon without having to trade for them.
 
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One dataminer suspects that Game Freak may actually have wanted to have all 18 Gyms be challengeable at some point in development, as there is a string of unused Trainer classes in the code that would accommodate two Gym Trainers per Minor League Gym.

Personally I don't think we should assume anything too specific, because dummied out data has led us all barking up the wrong trees before, but it is interesting.
Wouldn't be surprised if they are gonna release Pokemon Gun and Pokemon Bullet-proof-vest with all 18 gyms. I'd find it acceptable if they made it actual sequels that used the game's save data for a new game (e.g., your champion data).
 
Love is temporary. Garchomp is forever.
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I'd love actual sequels.
I'm holding out for a Russia-based region, personally. Pokémon Winter and Pokémon Summer.
 
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I wish Galarian meowth was completely fluffy like I originally saw it rather than having the same slim body with a giant beard... I’m fine with one on Perrserker but it looks cursed on Meowth since the front view gives no indication that it’s a beard and not just a fluffy cute cat.
 
Son of Ares
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I just realized why Dracovish is so good in competitive. It wants revenge for being revived as a horrible abomination. "If you won't let me die then I'll kill everything else!"

Goddamn Shou tuck- I mean, Cara Liss.
 
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Hot take: The Wishing Stars and Wishing Pieces are the remains of Minior, which is why said Pokémon is unavailable in Galar. Border patrol grinds them up.
 
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I think I found a possible inspiration for the Rolycoly line’s shiny coloration. The shiny forms of Rolycoly, Carkoal, and Coallosal are all primarily blue, and, according to Wikipedia,
"Blue Coal" is the term for a once-popular and trademarked brand of anthracite, [a variety of coal], mined by the Glen Alden Coal Company in Pennsylvania, and sprayed with a blue dye at the mine before shipping to its northeastern U.S. markets to distinguish it from its competitors.
 
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I think I found a possible inspiration for the Rolycoly line’s shiny coloration. The shiny forms of Rolycoly, Carkoal, and Coallosal are all primarily blue, and, according to Wikipedia,
Neat. I'm working on the Rolycoly line article for the TV Tropes Fanon Pokedex so thanks for imparting this detail.
 
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I mentioned this in the "what did/didn't you like thread," but I really do wish that the game kept a record of out previous League cards. I also think it would be cool if we could have both a common and a rare one like all the NPCs.

On the subject of Shinies, it seems like kind of a missed opportunity that they didn't have Shiny Cramorant's Gulping/Gorging Forms dredge up a Shiny Arrokuda/Pikachu. I guess it might require an extra set of animations, but it would just be for one Pokémon - and that kind of thing didn't stop them from making a Shiny-specific animation for Mind Blown in USUM.

Also, why is Shiny Sirfetch'd a Simpson?
 
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@ Game Freak

Okay models being complicated, I get. But look

I am a 100% amateur when it comes to spritework. I have zero prior experience. But it took me about an hour and a half in MS Paint to slap together some small edits to the menu sprites so that Gen 4 and earlier gender differences are represented:

sprites.png
 
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I've got spurs that jingle jangle jingle
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So I beat the main story. Final battle had me worried a few times.
Spoiler tagged to avoid giving away details of the final boss for those who don't want them.
I have to say despite what I'd read I found Leon one of the tougher champions. I think I would have lost if I hadn't been using the Pokejobs to EV train my party a decent amount. He had a decent level advantage, but he did better than Blue did when I replayed gen 1 last year, and Blue had a much bigger level advantage.
My team:
Arvis the Ninetales (M), -speed nature unfortunately which has cost him a number of fights.
Elecmon the Raichu (F), actually named after the Robot Master, not the Digimon.;)
Jeeves the Inteleon (M), starter. Got a great +Special Attack nature
Skatha the Weavile (F). GREAT IVs and was captured in a Max Raid. Powerhouse but being a Weavile collapses fast under strong physical attack. Has quite good special defense, though, thanks to Nature.
Dux the SirFetch'd (M). Has +Attack nature and inflicts crazy damage.
Ethlin the Roserade (F). My first "on map" Wild Area capture. She was higher level than everyone so she did tons of damage and took a lot of Pokéballs. Unfortunate -Special Attack nature but still a heavy hitter.

Levels were in the mid to high 50s.

I led with Arvis. Leon's Aegislash did the Aegislash "shield/attack/shield" dance, but Arvis still won. Then Leon sent in Haxorus who outsped and smashed Arvis (Arvis has a -speed nature unfortunately). Skatha came out and hit Haxorus with an Icicle Crash. I freak out when Haxorus hangs on, but it flinches to my relief. Leon sends out Rhyperior--I switch in Ethlin. Rhyperior's Stone Edge misses and the following Giga Drain puts Rhyperior is down.

Dragapult comes out and it gets real.

Ethlin managed to hold on against a Flamethrower, but her Stun Spore misses and she goes down right after. I send in Elecmon to thunder wave Dragapult. It works, but Elecmon is defeated. This may have been a mistake, in retrospect, but I wasn't sure if Skatha would be able to hit Dragapult first without the paralysis. Still, that was what I did; Skatha swoops down and defeats Dragapult with a quick Throat Chop, then defeats Rillaboom with two Icicle Crashes (the first flinches, luckily).

Charizard emerges, Gigantamaxes, and crushes Skatha after eating a Throat Chop. I then make a big mistake.

I send in Dux to use First Impressions to guarantee Jeeves can one-shot.

Charizard uses Max Airstream.

So Charizard is faster than Jeeves now and lands a Max Overgrowth. Jeeves survive with 8 HP and drops Charizard with a Geyser. I should have actually used some of that Dynamax candy I've got stored up, but we did it.

Tensest champion battle I can remember. Poor Dux did nothing but make it harder. He was incredibly useful in earlier rounds though.
I used a bunch of other Pokémon through the story and I hope to get them all the champion ribbon later.
 
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