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DjJoe's Rants

Why can't Pokemon expand?

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This is a blog where I will discuss an idea. It's not card related, it's more of a hopes & dreams deal towards the video game.

First off, because I want to get it out of the way: I HATE Microsoft and Xbox/Xbox360. I am not having a technological discussion, or a quality discussion on Multiplayer or currently released Games. I, personally, do not like the games, do not like the controllers, and I don't appreciate paying $110 to play one game online ($60 game, plus $50 LIVE fee per year).

Secondly, I think Nintendo is great. Not in the same sense as Microsoft is bad, but in the sense that Nintendo delivers exactly as it says, and consistently. I've had little to no problems with their software, hardware, or prices. Quality assured as well.

That being said, I think Pokemon can do better.

Here's how (and, what my blog is about):

1) Expand the Pokemon World. We currently have 5 Regions (Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, Sinnoh, and Unova) over 5 Games (Red,Gold,Ruby,Diamond, Black- as examples, I know there are more) on two systems (DS and GBA). However, we know that new areas are added with game release (Sinjoh Ruins, The # Islands, etc) and older areas/events are explained (See Cinnabar Island in HGSS, Cynthia, etc). But on a DS system, memory is severly limited and we can only support 1 region per game, or limit the number of pokemon/events in the game to include more (my guess on why HGSS includes two regions). However, there are other areas that need to be refferred to, and that should be a viable option. The Orange Islands from the TV show are one, the region from the Pokemon Collisseum series, and the Island from Pokemon Snap are a few quick examples.

2) Leave Nintendo. That's right, currently Nintendo holds ALL of the Pokemon games at their disposal. But is that the best option? Nintendo is dominating in their field of Handheld gaming systems and Pokemon Games. However, is it because it's quick and easy or is it because they don't need to that they don't stray from their current plan?

Here's my proposal, and honestly I only seeing it work on Sony's Playstation and support of the Playstation Network:

1) Create a new game. This game, on a disc, will include all 5 presently released regions as well as a few more (such as Orange Islands) and some event content (Arceus, Shaymin, Vicitni for example). When you begin the game and given your town map, it shows the Kanto region, you begin the game in Kanto as you would in the R/B/Y/FR/LG versions, and the other regions are covered by clouds or shadow to be unlocked later.

2) Upon completing the Kanto region (including becoming Champion), Looker will be at your Pallet town home, alongside your mother, Professor Oak, and the newly introduced (at that time) Professor Elm. Professor Elm will explain to you-

"The Johto region to the West is available for study. However, we have decided the best way to study Pokemon is to have a fresh mind that is familiar with how some pokemon already act. Please leave your Kanto Region pokemon, and come with me"

Looker will then explain that your role in Kanto is commendable, but until you prove yourself a champion in Johto, he simply can't allow such foreign pokemon in the region. Even though some pokemon exist in both regions, the habitats are different and bringing Kanto region pokemon in may upset the present balance.

This method takes a look to the game that I feel has been forgotten as you progress through any pokemon game: You are an adolescent, studying pokemon and collecting data, as well as an abled body pokemon Trainer. I feel that as a trainer, players forget their goal was to fill their pokedexes, even though it is the first thing Professor Oak asks you to do and gives you a Pokemon for your Protection. By forcing you to start over (essentially, a mandatory way of switching cartridges) you are forced to get new pokemon and fill a new pokedex file.

3) Upon completing the Johto Region, you can be taken to the next area, which may be Sinnoh, Hoenn, or Unova depending on Game Development. Or maybe add in a new feature, like the Orange Islands. They could even go bold and add the next area as the Sinjoh ruins, applying a tie-in as to why you would study things in the Sinnoh Region. Regardless, the same story is presented- Looker, a new professor, a new region.

4) Downloadable Content: Unlike the current installments which promote Wonder Cards, putting a game on the Playstation Network allows for downloadable content, such as the Liberty Garden area. Since it's not limited to a minor amount of space, new regions can be added. Let's say you had a HGSS game, and now B&W is coming with Unova- rather than buy a new game, you just buy/download the add-on content and just expand your current game. You can get new Regions, new Events, new Pokemon- everything as a downloadable permanent add-on. And for things like Liberty Garden? It won't actually be there until you get to Unova/Castelia City anyway.

5) New Abilities: Hate having to walk around with a HM-machine like Bibarel to Surf, Dive, Strength, Flash, Cut or whatever your way through the game? Hate having to teach a team member a crappy HM just to get to the next town? Here's the solution- Abilities. Unlike the current definition, these abilities are dormant- they appear after a certain point. For this we require a pokemon to walk behind you- just like in HGSS. However, if you turn around to talk to a Pidgey, for example, it'll say "Pidgey looks eager to Fly you somewhere far away someday" and as you level it up, it will eventually say "Pidgey wants to fly you somewhere. Go for a ride?". It's an innate ability that makes sense as a pokemon gets stronger. It prevents you going out to catch a LV2 Spearow JUST to Fly you around. That thing's a baby, it shouldn't be able to lift people! The same can hold true for other types- a baby Squirtle shouldn't surf you around, but after a while of training it can! If you're surfing around, a different type can ride with you if able (Obviously you can't ride Squirtle with a Snorlax out) and it can use it's ability too mid-surf. Or, by clicking A/X, you can ask Squirtle to dive for you if able. Or press A/X at a waterfall and Squirtle can scale it if able. This enables you to have useful abilities and moves on a pokemon and discovering a pokemon's potential as an inhabitant in the Pokemon world. Now there's a reason to level up pokemon that isn't "To defeat a gym leader".

6) Timeline Villains: Ever wonder why Team Rocket stops showing face? Why there's no Team Aqua or Magma with Plasma? Here's why- after becoming Champion (or another ingame event), Looker approaches you to track down remnants of these organizations, just as he did in B&W. It expands the storyline and can lead to reoccurring characters and their development (such as Giovanni appearing at the Celebi Shrine).

The only thing I can't figure out is how to transfer information to a portable system. I figured that the Battlebox can be uploaded in a similar fashion to Trophies, where they are uploaded or downloaded from the network.

So, what do y'all think?


  1. LegendCallerL's Avatar
    Having a larger game seems like a nice idea, but I doubt that Pokemon would ever leave Nintendo. Game Freak has only created games for Nintendo for years. However, I believe the multiple region in one game could be implemented on the wii or whatever home console Nintendo comes up with next with multiple discs, with a region or two on each disc, but 1 save file which could be accessed through each disc. Possibly, they could design a "blank" disc which could be used to save downloaded content for wi-fi. In this way, there would be easier connectivity with the DS systems, as Nintendo has connected wii and ds before. The innate ability idea and the villain follow-up seems nice though. Heh, after beating Team Plasma, teaming up with N to crush Team Rocket.
    Updated 07/28/2011 at 06:06 AM by LegendCallerL (The K key on my keyboard was acting up.)
  2. djjoe227's Avatar
    It's not that I think they "Should" leave Nintendo, it's that currently Nintendo's systems lack either the memory or power to run such a large intricated system like that. It's only because of Sony's current adaption to Blu-ray that I feel they should move, as the increased memory is a huge advantage. If Nintendo had a similar system (and again, I know nothing of actual tech beyond what's basically presented to customers) I would support Nintendo 100%. Even if Nintendo could make a standalone system with enough memory and power specifically for Pokemon, I would be satisfied. This would be similar to your "blank disc" concept.

    Thank-you, I appreciate the input!
  3. espeon200's Avatar
    I'm not going to lie, the first thing I thought when I saw the title was "Jigglypuff can expand..."

    Here's the biggest problem with what you're suggesting: Junichi Masuda is completely against doing home console games. He's basically said as much before saying he sees the Pokemon series as a portable adventure. This is why GameFreak never is the main developer on the console Pokemon games.

    I think that if they were willing to go with a Wii or Wii U version of the game that was an actual successor to the handheld games that we likely could see everything that you've suggested in this blog. The problem, then, isn't Nintendo as much as it's GameFreak not wanting to think outside the box. I bet that if GameFreak came to Nintendo tomorrow and told them that there would be a new Pokemon main series game released at the launch of Wii U, that Nintendo would be ecstatic.

    Anyway, them's just my thoughts so my response wasn't totally trolling about Jigglypuff expanding.
  4. djjoe227's Avatar
    To be honest, forgot completely about Jigglypuff, lol. Kudos to you!

    As I said in the blog, I am nowhere on the technical side, so it's good to see information in regards to things such as Junichi Masuda's stance on the subject. It's something I normally don't have access to or know of.

    Thank you!!
  5. DarkBlade's Avatar
    This idea sounds really cool, but Nintendo would never make it happen...
  6. vaporeon's Avatar
    Give me a few years. I am working on this.