Thursday, May 31, 2007

Pokemon Diamond - Surfing around

So I've been back to Pokemon for most of this week. The gradual pace of the game makes it difficult to decide when to write about it. Beating the Hearthome gym leader seems like an obvious spot, but I didn't really get much further then. It is only now, once I have been using the Surf technique and exploring new areas that I feel I've really kind of gotten somewhere - even though I haven't.

Rereading the previous paragraph, it seems to make little sense. The point I want to get across is that there don't seem to be major milestones in Pokemon. Beating the gym leaders are one of the few times that happens. But you always get a new technique after beating them so you open up more areas to explore - it is almost like Super Metroid in that aspect. The game is actually fairly linear in that you are supposed to progress from one town to another. It doesn't feel linear because each town opens up more stuff to do: try the global trade station, raise and breed pokemon in the daycare, explore the underground, so that as you get to each new area it seems like the game is opening up exponentially.

The battle with the Hearthome gym leader was my toughest so far. I ended it with only one of my six Pokemon left alive. This is despite knowing that all her Pokemon were weak to Dark attacks. I think, for the first time in the game, I was actually a bit underleveled. I've been concentrating on raising a core of 6-8 pokemon and so I guess my Pokemon are a few levels under where they could be if I was only worrying about 4-6. Anyway, the battle was tense, I was forced to use many potions and finally Mercury, my Vespiqueen, stood as the sole survivor.

And the surf technique is totally awesome. It opens up just a ton more areas.

No comments: