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Anyone else love the Gym Battles?

Ultra Beast Lover

Well-Known Member
I think that the Gym battles this Gen are a lot more fun. For starters, right off the bat it's clear that the player wants to participate, they aren't just roped into it. For another thing, all the people cheering in the stadium makes it feel so much more grand when you defeat a Gym leader. I hope that stadiums are the norm for every generation.
 

Zoruagible

Lover of underrated characters
I hope it's the new standard, though I'd like it if a future generation or game touched on the minor league. They mentioned it several times yet you never meet anyone associated with the minor league nor get an idea of what it's like. Imagine if you had to battle your way through the minors in order to fight the major league trainers? With the major league trainers being juiced up endgame tier like the Kanto gyms in the Johto games
 

Dragalge

"Orange" Magical Girl
They're certainly a step up from the snoozefest that was Kalos' gyms for sure. Actual upbeat music (though Gens IV - V remain supreme on this in my opinion) helps a lot. That said, I find it so odd that there's always people in the stadiums no matter what. Do they just sit there 24/7 or something? And while the difficulty is what I'd expect from gyms, I did like Raihan's gym match a lot along with Kabu's.
 

Reinhardt

Well-Known Member
The Gym battles are one of the best parts of Sword and Shield for sure, the stadium setting, the pumping nightclub anthem, the cheering audience, it's all just great! I also like how Piers' Gym shakes things up a bit by having a different setting, a different theme song and no Dynamax.
Granted, some of the battles themselves can be a pain, and not in a fun or engaging way, just a "Man screw this game!" kind of way. I'm mostly talking about Bea and Allister in that regard, it always takes a couple of attempts for me to figure out a strategy that can actually beat the fourth Gym, and I HATE the puzzle you do beforehand. But I can't bring myself to say I don't like it at all, mainly because Bea's eyes switching from "Fierce determination of an all-powerful Karate master!" to "Good morning Sweetie, I made waffles" after you beat her is pretty satisfying.
Speaking of which, Galar's are easily my favourite set of Gym Leaders in any region, they all just have bags of character and are a lot more memorable than many other Gym Leaders.
 

catzeye

Writer's Block
THe gym challenge was one of my absolute favorite things about SwSh. It felt like I actually had a reason to go to the gyms rather than being roped along into doing so just so I could advance the plot. The fact that the gyms were actually made to be a big deal made it feel more grand. Plus the cheering of the crowds just amped up the feeling.


I hope it's the new standard, though I'd like it if a future generation or game touched on the minor league. They mentioned it several times yet you never meet anyone associated with the minor league nor get an idea of what it's like. Imagine if you had to battle your way through the minors in order to fight the major league trainers? With the major league trainers being juiced up endgame tier like the Kanto gyms in the Johto games

What I would have liked to have seen would have been a rival character (Marnie was my first choice for this) who got into the major leagues and champion's cup by defeating the minor league gyms (instead of just getting an endorsement from someone well connected). It would have added an interesting dimension to the trainers we could have faced and could have also made for some interesting commentary. Like if it was revealed that it was super hard to get an endorsement if you weren't well connected/in the right place at the right time and that left a lot of otherwise good trainers out in the cold

They're certainly a step up from the snoozefest that was Kalos' gyms for sure. Actual upbeat music (though Gens IV - V remain supreme on this in my opinion) helps a lot. That said, I find it so odd that there's always people in the stadiums no matter what. Do they just sit there 24/7 or something? And while the difficulty is what I'd expect from gyms, I did like Raihan's gym match a lot along with Kabu's.

I think to answer your question about the people in the stadiums. Even though we aren't really subjected to it gameplay wise, the whole challenge is on a schedule. So there's likely set days gyms took opponents so fans would know when to show up to the stadium.
 

Ultra Beast Lover

Well-Known Member
Overall, the Gyms here just give a different feeling. The Gyms from other games were fine and pretty fun, but they weren't grand. I didn't feel accomplished in other Gyms, not in the same way. I felt good about easy wins, but over time it became a checklist, no different from fighting any other strong trainer. Here though, your heart stops for a moment when you hear the cheers, when the Gym Leader steps out and is ready for a fight. In other games it's just, "Oh, I just beat the strongest guy in town... neat." Here, you realize that these are the best trainers in the region, and it's for a reason.
 

Ophie

Salingerian Phony
There's also the fact that the Gym Leaders actually do something other than stay in their Gyms, even if the Stow-on-Side and Circhester Stadium folks are pretty reclusive thanks to them being version exclusives. It's a directon taken in Generation V that they've been doing since (except in VI for some reason--the Kalos Gym Leaders are just there.)

Though it would've been pretty neat to see the stadiums get increasingly full the further you go. As popular as Milo is, he must have to fight hundreds of battles every season, and it wouldn't be the sort of thing to fill up a stadium.
 

Ignition

From Pallet Town Rookie to World Champion
I like the thematic use of this being a televised sport with you having a fan that literally evolved with you (the girl with the Blipbug/Dottler/Orbeetle) and a cheering crowd. Also love the music and it might be my new favorite Gym Theme after XY’s.

My only problem is the battlefields lack anything unique besides their respective Type’s colors. Gen 6 & 7 have had something like Olympia’s space background which helps give a little more insight to their characters. I guess League Cards do that but I want it shown not told.
There's also the fact that the Gym Leaders actually do something other than stay in their Gyms, even if the Stow-on-Side and Circhester Stadium folks are pretty reclusive thanks to them being version exclusives. It's a directon taken in Generation V that they've been doing since (except in VI for some reason--the Kalos Gym Leaders are just there.)

Though it would've been pretty neat to see the stadiums get increasingly full the further you go. As popular as Milo is, he must have to fight hundreds of battles every season, and it wouldn't be the sort of thing to fill up a stadium.
The fact that they have jobs/hobbies outside of their Gym Leader status (photographer/artist, sports enthusiast, Mega Evolution successor, gardener, inventor, model, fortune teller, Pokémon Village protector) makes me think that, like lots of XY, they didn’t have time to fully expand on it.
 

Bill the Typhlosion

Well-Known Member
I've been wanting there to be battles like this in the mainline Pokemon games for years. My idea was just to have the Elite Four and Champion battles in a stadium, a bit like in the anime. But no, in Sword and Shield they actually went and did it for every Gym battle, too! The whole spectacle of it is just amazing.
 

Orphalesion

Well-Known Member
I really wish they would keep this approach to gym battles. With the stadiums and the spectators and the huge media coverage. It only makes sense.
With how popular Pokemon Battles are in the world of Pokemon it never felt right that the gyms and the Elite Four battles didn't have spectators.

But with GF I'm kinda expecting them to go "Oh this is just Galar's culture and we'll abandon that for the next region" (but I really hope I'm wrong with this)
 

Orphalesion

Well-Known Member
I don't see anything wrong with Rehan's character. The only problem with him I see is that he's supposed to be a weather based trainer but the AI is too dumb to make effective use of that mechanic
 

Ophie

Salingerian Phony
I don't see anything wrong with Rehan's character. The only problem with him I see is that he's supposed to be a weather based trainer but the AI is too dumb to make effective use of that mechanic

Weather is a pretty advanced mechanic, and I think the big thing to consider is that every main series Pokémon game is designed to be easily understood by someone who has never played an RPG before, let alone a Pokémon game. The Rain Team available for rental at the Battle Tower shows that they know how rain can be used, and there are some trainers in the Battle Tower who use weather well, so I think it's more that Raihan's team and his AI are intentionally held back to allow beginners to be able to fight him and win.

He and his underlings are essentially a beginner tutorial to using weather, and you're asked to figure the rest of it out. I think it's also compounded by them also being a beginner tutorial to double battling--I have seen people get tripped up REAL bad at Hammerlocke Stadium simply because Raihan is a double battling specialist.
 

KyogreThunder

Call of Fate
Meh. If the bigger emphasis on Gym Challenges means the games will have less content, linear region designs and lack of proper cave/dungeon areas, I'd rather see them go back to what the Gym quest was in Generations I - VI.
 

Captain Jigglypuff

Leader of Jigglypuff Army
I like them because each Leader has something new to them that the other Leaders don’t have whether it’s their Gym puzzle or the moves that they use. Liza and Tate are enjoyable to battle since they act as a team and give you a Double Gym battle which wasn’t even repeated for another 16 years until Raihan in SwSh. Lt. Surge will always be remembered for his Garbage Can traps. Blaine has his riddles.
 
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