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What if each Pokemon game had a harder version?

Horrible Story Writer
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What I mean with this is what if every pokemon game received a hard mode, or just a harder revamped. How would gym battles, encounters, rival battles, evil team battles, elite four battles, champion battles, and just the main story be changed or updated.
 
Sell a Flareon
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Game Freak did a few once, but B2W2 has the Key Systems for setting change.

USUM is a rewritten harder version of SM, to be exact. The regular SM was harder than XY and ORAS, but USUM is a lot more challenging.
 
red sphere
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I'd like a hard mode to be something more than just a bump up in levels for Gym Leaders or other important trainers. Better AI and different battle strategies would be nice.

Edit: Hard mode being selectable at the start would be good too. I don't know why B2W2 had you beat the game normally first to unlock it.
 
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Informed Casual
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Pokémon has some weird ideas when it comes to difficulty settings, as evidenced by Black and White 2. But when I saw the title of the thread I thought of a scenario similar to Fire Emblem Fates where one version was “easy mode” and the other was not challenging for veteran players.
 
Praise Euterpe
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Definitely they need to do difficulty levels. I wasn't bothered by it pre-S/M. However, in S/M they made the game harder and I didn't care for that. I have no problem with harder modes for people who prefer that and definitely think they should be there. However, as for me, I prefer my Pokemon games easier. So making the games harder without any option for otherwise is really frustrating.
 
Stuck
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For the Johto games, there is a certain Crystal hack that pulls off a hard mode pretty well.

Falkner: Pidgey, Hoothoot, Pidgeotto (I'd replace the latter with Togetic)
Bugsy: Butterfree, Beedrill, Yanma, Scyther (Beedrill with Ariados)
Whitney: Clefairy, Munchlax, Teddiursa, Miltank (Munchlax with Girafarig)
Morty: Haunter (x2), Noctowl, Misdreavus, Gengar (I'd ditch one of the Haunter)
Chuck: Primeape, Machoke, Hitmontop, Poliwrath (Machoke with Heracross)
Jasmine: Skarmory, Magneton, Forretress, Scizor, Steelix (Scizor with Aerodactyl)
Pryce: Dewgong, Sneasel, Cloyster, Lapras, Mamoswine (Lapras with Jynx)
Clair: Gyarados, Dragonair, Yanmega, Ampharos, Kingdra

Will: Jynx, Exeggutor, Alakazam, Slowbro, Xatu (x2) (Alakazam with Espeon, Slowbro with Slowking, one Xatu with Wobbuffet)
Koga: Ariados, Venomoth, Forretress, Muk, Weezing, Crobat (Ariados with Tentacruel)
Bruno: Hitmonlee, Hitmonchan, Hitmontop, Heracross, Onix, Machamp (Heracross with Granbull, Onix with Rhyperior)
Karen: Umbreon, Persian, Weavile, Gengar, Honchkrow, Houndoom (Persian with Tyranitar)
Lance: Gyarados, Kingdra, Aerodactyl, Charizard, Dragonite (x2) (Kingdra with Feraligatr)

They also have better EVs and the signature Pokemon have non-berry items starting from Morty. I'm too lazy to type the Kanto roster right now.
 
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Horrible Story Writer
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I guess I can throw my hat in

This is Kanto, movesets and evolutions based off of USUM
Everyone is rematchable, with post game having teams that might resemble the World Tournament in B2W2 (Except for Elite 4, they will have out of region pokemon)

Brock: Geodude, Onix, Aerodactyl. Geodude and Onix being standout members of Brock and Aerodactyl as the challenge. Being insanely fast, and to up to difficulty it can Mega Evolve.
Misty: Gyrados, Psyduck, Starmie. These 3 pokemon would be challenging no matter what type you chose. Gyrados can Mega Evolve, but Starmie is her main.
Lt Surge: Alolan Raichu, Jolteon, Magneton, Electabuzz. Unlike the past two, Lt Surge cant Mega Evolve his mons, however A-Raichu has its special Z-Move.
Erika: Vileplume, Parasect, Venasaur. Venasaur can mega evolve.
Koga: Alolan Muk, Weezing, Venamoth, Arbok, Gengar. Gengar can mega evolve.
Sabrina: Golduck, Mr Mime, Slowbro, Kadabra, Alakazam. Alakazam can Mega Evolve.
Blaine: Arcanine, Rapidash, Magmar, Flareon, Charizard. Charizard will Mega Evolve into Either X or Y depending on which route you take to fight him.
Giovanni: Rhyperior, Nidoking, Alolan Dugtrio, Golem, Nidoqueen, Marowak. No Z Moves or Mega Evolutions, however they all have full IVs

Elite 4: You are not allowed to heal outside of battle.
Lorelei: Lapras, Weavile, Alolan Sandslash, Walrein, Mamoswine, Mega Abomasnow.
Bruno: Hitmonchan, Poliwrath, Machamp, Medicham, Meinshou, Mega Lucario.
Agatha: Mega Gengar, Mismagius, Chandelure, Froslass, Banette, Driftblim.
Lance: Dragonite, Salamence, Garchomp, Haxorus, Kingdra, Mega Rayquaza.

Champion will have the same team except their starter is mega. And the team has better movesets.

Post game for gym leaders (All have full 31 IVs on everything)

Brock: Golem, Mega Aerodactyl, Tyranitar, Sudowoodo, Probopass, Stakataka
Misty: Mega Gyrados, Golduck, Starmie, Kingdra, Carracosta, Primal Kyogre.
Lt Surge: Alolan Raichu, Electrivire, Galvantula, Luxray, Mega Ampharos, Zekrom.
Erika: Mega Venasaur, Vileplume, Sceptile, Tangrowth, Leafeon, Tapu Bulu
Koga: Mega Gengar, Alolan Muk, Salazzle, Arbok, Toxicroak, Nagandel
Sabrina: Mega Alakazam, Deoxys, Bronzor, Medicham, Slowking, Alolan Raichu
Blaine: Arcanine, Primal Groudon, Mega Houndoom, Camerupt, Blaziken, Darmanitan.
Giovanni: Rhyperior, Landorus, Mega Garchomp, Krookodile, Steelix, Flygon
 
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I never understood why some fans liked the hard mode in BW2 or why many of them complain that the newer games are too easy. If you really seek the thrill of a challenge, why not set that up yourself by doing a nuzlocke challenge or monotype challenge or just by using weaker Pokemon in general so that you're always one step behind the ingame trainers?
 
Blast Turtle
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I never understood why some fans liked the hard mode in BW2 or why many of them complain that the newer games are too easy. If you really seek the thrill of a challenge, why not set that up yourself by doing a nuzlocke challenge or monotype challenge or just by using weaker Pokemon in general so that you're always one step behind the ingame trainers?
It kinda sucks to be forced to follow certain rules and/or avoid using certain Pokémon in order to make the games more challenging. I don’t have the discipline to follow through on a Nuzlocke or avoid Pokémon I really want to use. Plus, monotype or Nuzlocke rules of weak Pokémon can’t compensate for opponents with only one or two Pokémon and free heals given to you. Challenge mode is nice in the sense that it actually makes your opponents harder to face instead of imposing rules on the player to compensate for easy enemies. It’s more satisfying in my opinion to face an actually difficult opponent rather than facing one that’s only challenging because I handicapped myself.

Though I will admit that the newer games aren’t as easy as people make them out to be, at least with the gen 7 games.
 
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Bringing the Thunder
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It kinda sucks to be forced to follow certain rules and/or avoid using certain Pokémon in order to make the games more challenging. I don’t have the discipline to follow through on a Nuzlocke or avoid Pokémon I really want to use. Plus, monotype or Nuzlocke rules of weak Pokémon can’t compensate for opponents with only one or two Pokémon and free heals given to you. Challenge mode is nice in the sense that it actually makes your opponents harder to face instead of imposing rules on the player to compensate for easy enemies. It’s more satisfying in my opinion to face an actually difficult opponent rather than facing one that’s only challenging because I handicapped myself.

Though I will admit that the newer games aren’t as easy as people make them out to be, at least with the gen 7 games.
This. Handicapping yourself with special rules like Nuzlocke or monotype runs just isn't the same. Adding extra limitations removes part of the strategy that exists in the game. But if the opponents are just challenging to begin with and you're accommodating for every facet of the game's strategy and using every resource at your disposal to win, then you can think the game through a lot more and come up with even more creative ways to win. You just don't strategize in the same way with those special rules than you if you simply have a more challenging opponent.
 
Empoleon Fanatic
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I wish the games just had a toggleable hard or "competitive" mode. If I were a developer on the games, this would be my outline for my competitive mode:

All Rival, Gym Leader, and Pokemon League battles are always going to be the same number of Pokemon on each team, so if a Gym Leader has 3 Pokemon, you can only bring 3 with you, Rival battles would be the same, always 1v1, 2v2, all the way up to eventually 6v6. The Pokemon on these teams would also have competitive held items, much like BW2's challenge mode, so you might see Life Orb, Focus Sash, etc. I should also note that consumed items like the Focus Sash or Weakness Policy would NOT be consumed in the above battles as these battles would essentially become the same style of battles as Battle Facilities. The Pokemon League, in addition to all the above changes and restrictions, would also feature auto-leveling to 50. On one hand, this would allow you to import in Pokemon from previous games so you can fight with your longtime partners from past journeys, much in the style that Ash will occasionally call upon one of his older Pokemon for his League Conferences but without being vastly over-leveled for the League, but on the other hand, doing so does not guarantee that you win your Pokemon League Challenge, so it would just be a personal choice and your current team would receive the same level, as the Elite Four and Champion would have the same amount of Pokemon as you, with competitive items, and also be auto-leveled.

This. Handicapping yourself with special rules like Nuzlocke or monotype runs just isn't the same. Adding extra limitations removes part of the strategy that exists in the game. But if the opponents are just challenging to begin with and you're accommodating for every facet of the game's strategy and using every resource at your disposal to win, then you can think the game through a lot more and come up with even more creative ways to win. You just don't strategize in the same way with those special rules than you if you simply have a more challenging opponent.
Instead of using tacky and artificial handicaps like those, what I do is skip as many optional trainer battles as possible and also do no grinding so I'm intentionally under-leveled but it doesn't FEEL as artificial as a Nuzlocke because I can still use all the same strategies you would in a normal playthrough, whereas many strategies aren't optimal in a Nuzlocke scenario, it's just a lot harder because of my lack of levels.
 
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Looking at all games in general, and introducing things that aren't controlled by the player:

-Gyms would increase their Pokémon number gradually, and from gym 5 onwards all of them would have 6 Pokémon as well as all league members.
-It would be impossible to exit a gym after beating the leader or whiting out. However, you can heal your Pokémon if you talk with the gym guide.
-Trainers would have 3-4 Pokémon on average.
-You couldn't use items on evil team dungeons, because they're evil or something. Amie bonuses would also be reset there.
-Trainers on the final routes could use Megas.
-The elite four and champion can use legendaries.
 
Lovely
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I loved challenge mode from B2W2. I guess if there were a challenge mode for every game, the major NPCs would have one more pokemon on their team and all of them would be holding items.

But that aside, I miss B2W2's NPC battles overall. Colress had a Magneton holding Eviolite, Ghetsis had a Hydreigon holding Life Orb, and there were at least two NPCs that had Flying Gem + Acrobatics. You'd be in for a surprise if you didn't know what their teams were like especially since they had held items to work with.
 
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sɪɴɢ ʏᴏᴜʀ ʟᴜʟʟᴀʙʏ
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I'm still not quite convinced what most people are really looking for when they mention "difficulty levels". I suppose a theoretical hard mode would be that Gym Leaders and Elite Four members would have more competitive teams with hold items and a more advanced AI, but ehhh. It's nothing a bit of extra level grinding won't mitigate at the end of the day and a bit of extra strategic planning.

I feel like a more efficient use of a hard mode would have somewhat of a nuzlocke mode. I feel like team limitations and handicaps are probably one of the better ways (imo) to get a challenge out of Pokemon games.
 
Horrible Story Writer
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I'm still not quite convinced what most people are really looking for when they mention "difficulty levels". I suppose a theoretical hard mode would be that Gym Leaders and Elite Four members would have more competitive teams with held items and a more advanced AI, but ehhh. It's nothing a bit of extra level grinding won't mitigate at the end of the day and a bit of extra strategic planning.

I feel like a more efficient use of a hard mode would have somewhat of a nuzlocke mode. I feel like team limitations and handicaps are probably one of the better ways (imo) to get a challenge out of Pokemon games.
I am gonna say what I look forward to in a difficulty mode. I look for more of a challenge, harder grinding, harder battles, updated areas, less available pokemon, and just something that could be implemented for replayability.
 
I ship 'em
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Hoenn Version:
Roxanne: Lileep, Aron, Nosepass (Rematch: Cradily, Armaldo, Aggron, Relicanth, Solrock, Probopass)
Brawly: Combusken, Meditite, Hariyama (Rematch: Blaziken, Breloom, Medicham, Pangoro, Lucario, Hariyama)
Wattson: Magneton, Eelektrik, Manectric (Rematch: Magnezone, Plusle, Minun, Eelektross, Lanturn, Manectric)
Flannery: Blaziken, Camerupt, Magcargo, Torkoal (Rematch: Blaziken, Camerupt, Magcargo, Houndoom, Salazzle, Torkoal)
Norman: Linoone, Vigoroth, Zangoose, Slaking (Rematch: Linoone, Exploud, Delcatty, Zangoose, Vigoroth, Slaking)
Winona: Ninjask, Tropius, Swellow, Altaria (Ninjask, Swellow, Salamence, Tropius, Masquerain, Altaria)
Tate and Liza: Claydol & Gardevoir, Solrock & Lunatone (Claydol, Gardevoir, Medicham, Grumpig, Solrock, Lunatone)
Wallace: Walrein, Whiscash, Swampert, Milotic (Walrein, Whiscash, Pelipper, Swampert, Alomomola, Milotic)
 
Horrible Story Writer
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I just wanna get all my ideas out so I don't fill up more space in other threads

Making Black and White harder

Not Black and White 2

Anyways, the first notable difference is that when you fight N, he has both a Purrloin and Zorua in which they are both level 9. As we move along, we notice more trainers with Pokemon like Pidove and Timbur. Bianca has the weaker starter at level 12 and an Audino somehow at 10. We get to Striaton City, and we are given a huge difficulty spike. The two gym leaders that you wouldn't normally face come up to you and require you to have a double battle with them. They both have the Simi variant of their main Pokemon. So you win, you wanna go to the dream yard, and when you manage to get to the free monkey, you have to battle her. She will have a level 10 variant of each monkey at all times, and you pick who you take. And you have to battle Cheren, who has his starter already at level 17 and it is evolved, and then he has a Pidove at 15. So you win, and you head into the gym, and instead of battling the gym trainers, you are instantly battling the gym leader that is stronger than you.
Chili: Patrat (16), Herdier (16), Simisear (19)
Cress: Patrat (16), Herdier (16), Simipour (19)
Cilan: Patrat (16), Herdier (16), Simisage (19)
Each of the monkeys has Fire Blast, Scald, and Seed Bomb respectively. Once you manage to win, you get the TM for Bulk Up. And you need to help Fennel. So at the dream yard, you battle 2 team plasma members back to back, where they each have a Herdier that is level 18. Once you win, Bianca will thank you and will heal up your team. So you are done with the first part of the game.

All Pokemon You Can Find Here:
Starter
Patrat
Lillipup
Purrloin
Timburr
Elemental Monkey

Part 2:
You finally move on, and you see the daycare, and you immediately get into a difficult double battle, with a Whimsicott and Liligant stall team. If you can beat that, you are thrown right into a battle with Cheren right after. She has a level 20 middle stage starter, a level 18 Pidove, and lastly a level 17 Blitzle. If you can win, he heals you up, but oh no you have to track down Team Plasma again. So you do that, and you have a double battle again with Cheren. Grunt A has a level 19 Sandile and Trubbish, while Grunt B has a level 19 Drilbur and Woobat. And if ya win you can finally head down. The dark grass will contain entirely new pokemon than the ones on the route, which can start at 5 levels stronger than the highest leveled Mon in the area. Rustling Grass gives out level 1 Audinos so grinding is now harder. And you get to Nacrene city, so you go to the Pinwheel forest. Nothing major has changed, except that if you go deeper, you can find a Plasma Grunt struggling. He will battle you with a level 22 Pawniard. And now you want to battle N. He will have ahem. A level 24 Zorua, a level 22 Tirtouga, and a level 21 Liepard. And you win. You are tired already, and now you face Lenora. Before that, the puzzles are harder, the penalties for getting answers wrong is being kicked out by a Stoutland. As for Lenora, she is also pretty difficult
Lenora: Herdier (25), Bouffalant (27), Watchog (29)
Lenora made you mentally suffer, and now you are done, but oh no, Team Plasma stole a dragon head and threw us in part 3!

All New Pokemon You Can Find Here:
Audino
Blitzel
Drilbur
Sandile
Roggenrola
Woobat
Patrat
Lillipup
Sawk/Throh
Tympole
Timburr
Sewaddle
Cottonee/Petilil

Part 3:
You can now visit the deep web I mean Inner Pinwheel Forest. You have a massive amount of Grunts to battle, with most of them having pokemon like Sawk, Woobat, and even Swoobats. But you manage to take back the dragon head, and you go up to Castelia City. But you are on the bridge, and you have a couple of battles with airborne trainers, using pokemon like Tranquil and Swoobat. But you are finally finished with those fights. So you get to Castelia City, and you get a call from Bianca. She wants to battle, so you head to the gate for free xp. Once their, Bianca shows off her new team
Bianca: Pignite, Servine, or Dewott (28), Audino (26), Munna (25), Herdier (25)
So you win right? Think again, a team Plasma grunt steals her pokemon in broad moonlight. And Iris and Cheren appear to help y'all out. But you wanna go to the Battle Company. Their pokemon are insane though, having full out items, EVS, IVS, and competitive movesets. The final boss even has a level 30 Scoliopede. You get an EXP Share and a whole lot of EXP. So you run around, get Biancas Munna back, and go to battle the gym. The gym has more puzzles, wait time is longer, every puzzle is reset once you leave, but you get to Burgh. He congratulates you on a battle. His team consists of
Burgh: Leavanny (30), Larvesta (32), Escavalier (B) Accelgor (W) {32}, Scoliopede (35)
And you win, against all odds. You get a TM and leave, and go to battle Cheren. Cheren has studied however and has items as well
Cheren: Tranquil (31), Golett (34), Fully Evolved Starter (37)
Now thus, you can start part 4

All Pokemon You Can Find Here:
Sewaddle
Swadloon
Tranquil
Pidove
Trubbish
Pansage
Pansear
Panpour
Scoliopede
Whirlipede

Part 4:
Nimbasa City is your next destination, but the pokemon on this route are strange. You have the classic Sandile, Scraggy, Darumaka encounters, but certain pokemon such as Sigilyth, Maractus, and Krookodile have auras surrounding them, buffing a random stat to the max, depending on nature, IVs, and EVs. The desert temple is strange too, but you think nothing of it. Inside, to get a fossil, you have to battle the trainer, who has a level 41 Gothitelle. The fossils are also level 5 when they revive. Now you wanna get to Nimbasa City. You go inside the entrance, you battle team Plasma who has a level 38 Garbodor. You get a bike yay. You fight N like usual, except no.
N: Carracosta (41), Liepard (41), Mienfoo (44), Zoroark (49)
Once you win, you can face Elisa, whose gym is full of Emolgas, who have a new HA. Serene Grace, plus they have Air Slash, which makes this a nightmare. Elisa challenges you once you win
Elisa: Emolga {HA} (42), Eelektross (44), Zebstrika (47), Galvantula (49)
You beat Elisa, finally. And Part 5 begins

All Pokemon You Can Find Here:
Sandile
Krokorok
Krookodile
Scraggy
Scrafty
Darumaka
Sigilyth
Maractus
Archen/Tirtouga
Dwebble
Crustle

Part 5:
With Nimbasa City Done, you go to the drawbridge, before being challenged by Cheren again.
Cheren: Unfezant (44), Golurk (49), Larvesta (53), Fully Evo Starter (54)
Blah Blah, you get thrown into a double battle with a Haxorus and a Beartic owning trainers. So now you can cross the drawbridge, which now hosts the more elite trainers. Slowly, you start to see more out of region pokemon with trainers. Throughout the bridge, you meet Skyla for the first time, and then the rest of the game becomes entirely unique for the most part. 5 Team Plasma grunts appear and try to send you out. Insert Cheren, Bianca, and Clay to help you and Skyla fight off the grunts. After taking out one Grunt with an Amoongus, Giallo attacks you.
Giallo: Sawsbuck (47), Scrafty (51), Blastoise (55)
If Giallo falls, he manages to escape with the other grunts to the Cold Storage. Clay congratulates you and offers you to go to his gym. Bianca also rewards you with Fly. Once that's all done with, you are free to either grind in the Cold Storage, the next route, or Clays Gym. You decide to challenge Clay, but a shocking scene happens. Ryoku blocks the pathway, and orders Team Plasma to block off the gym, and when you try to resist, he challenges you.
Ryoku: Scoliopede (51), Simisage (54)
And Ryoku falls. Ryoku reveals that the cage can be broke with a button so he wouldn't get pummeled. He also reveals that Giallo has it, so you go to the cold storage. Inside, Team Plasma grunts block your way, and you have to beat them 1 by 1. 8 in total, back to back. Giallo gives up the button, and a lound clang sound can be heard. That's the cage breaking. So now you can battle Clay, but.
 
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