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Missed Opportunities in the Galar Region

Locormus

Can we please get the older, old forum back?
Hi.

Honestly, I like the Galar Region. It has landmarks and plots of land that gives it an unique feel. However, in it's main form (not counting the DLC), it's not as expansive and doesn't lend to hours of exploring as much as Hoenn, Sinnoh or Unova have to offer. I'm not really talking about the linearity of these games per sé, since the Gen5 games are incredibly linear, but have plenty of ways to explore the region. It's about the region feeling empty.

Best example: The Galar Mines. I honestly don't understand how GameFreak expects us to feel satisfied when those are the only caves in this region. There's nothing to them outside of following the same path. There's no feeling that you might 'get lost' or that it may be a challenge to go through. Compare that to entering Mt.Moon or Rock Tunnel for the first time and genuinely not knowing where exactly to go and which path leads to where. Heck, look at the Oreburgh Gate, it's one way in and then you exit on the other side, but there's a vast cave underneath waiting to be explored on the revisit, with different layers that invite you to visit the location several times as you get more HM moves on your Bibarel. And it's not just the Galar Mines that have this problem, it's basically every location that doesn't have a creek or lake next to it. I love the Glimwood Tangle, but outside of being a unique location, there's nothing left to do after you have gone through it once. Compare that to Pinwheel Forest and you'll know what I mean.

And that's about it for the region for me.

In terms of the characters, there's only one major thing that I really dislike about it - and this only counts for Sword. It's Gordie. It's the fact that he's a pompous Rock-type Gym Leader when he's the sixth gym leader you face. Rock-type should never have been considered for a gym in Galar after the first initial three - and especially if Kabu was made to look impressive and a hurdle. Especially compared to Melony, who has a tough combination of pokémon, including Zen Mode, Galar Darmanitan and Gmax Lapras. But come on. This guy has a Pokémon that's 4x weak to Grass and one that's 4x weak to Water and the other two don't offer any particular challenge: Stonjourner and.. Shuckle. Another missed opportunity about Gordie is that there's no theme to his team whatsoever and it's just a bunch of Rock-types thrown together, there's literally no cohesion and I don't see a reason why Coalossal is his main pokémon.

I get that they want to have separate gym leaders for the games, but there were plenty of types left to draw from over the Rock-type. There are more challenging types to use.. The Steel-type doesn't get used at all. Historically, the Steel-type is a good type to offer as the sixth challenge: Both Jasmine and Byron can be challenged as the sixth gym leader (Johto is a bit fluid, but she's generally considered the sixth) and you have a gym leader-styled battle with Molayne around the same point in Sun and Moon.

You could ask: What would you do with the Steel-type in Galar? Well, it's actually fairly obvious. You turn Gordie into a historian that researches Galar's general history and theme his team around that and it's actually incredibly easy, but hard to understand why they actually didn't do it in the first place:
- Gmax Corviknight: a knight.
- Aegislash/Doublade: a sword (and shield).
- Perrserker: a viking (which raided England).
- Mawile: a Morgan le Fay stand-in from the Arthurian tradition.

And that's how you have a themed, balanced and challenging opponent for the right point in the game - but somehow they opted for a cakewalk team with no balance or cohesion centered around a type that in previous generations you slaughtered either as the first or second gym. Olivia in S/M was worse, but Gordie just takes the cake.

And those are the two biggest missed opportunities in Galar in my eyes. What are yours?
 

Ignition

Pancakes
For a region that’s supposed to be more competitive than everyone else, it’s a shame that I can’t recall a single fight being difficult. Maybe the postgame Hop battle with his box art but otherwise most Trainers didn’t give a challenge. And this is with someone who didn’t use items in battle and Dynamaxing. I don’t buy Pokémon always being easy as an excuse because it’s not like they’re foreign to difficulty. It wouldn’t bother me as much if it wasn’t for how hyped up everyone is just to fall to a sweep by one of my Pokémon.

I also hate how sponsorships amount to nothing even though both prerelease and in game dialogue made it out to be something important just for it to be random logos all over the place. PokéJobs kind of cover this but it’s nothing besides a stripped down Poké Pelago.
 

Locormus

Can we please get the older, old forum back?
For a region that’s supposed to be more competitive than everyone else, it’s a shame that I can’t recall a single fight being difficult. Maybe the postgame Hop battle with his box art but otherwise most Trainers didn’t give a challenge. And this is with someone who didn’t use items in battle and Dynamaxing. I don’t buy Pokémon always being easy as an excuse because it’s not like they’re foreign to difficulty. It wouldn’t bother me as much if it wasn’t for how hyped up everyone is just to fall to a sweep by one of my Pokémon.

I do agree, but GameFreak has come out that they want to strip the games of difficulty and make the games easier to play. The reason behind it would be that kids these days have shorter attention spans (citing the popularity of mobile gaming (with generally short levels) as an example).
 

Ignition

Pancakes
I do agree, but GameFreak has come out that they want to strip the games of difficulty and make the games easier to play. The reason behind it would be that kids these days have shorter attention spans (citing the popularity of mobile gaming (with generally short levels) as an example).
I still don't understand this. I know this was the reasoning for the exclusion of the Battle Frontier in ORAS so it's kind of dated but mobile gaming isn't becoming a substitute for consoles. Can they not just give players the option to choose their difficulty like in B2W2? Then you have USUM which, while not the Dark Souls of Pokémon, has some of the most difficult battles in the series. I just find this logic hard to justify when they gave a good middle ground years ago
 

Auraninja

Eh, ragazzo!
I do agree, but GameFreak has come out that they want to strip the games of difficulty and make the games easier to play. The reason behind it would be that kids these days have shorter attention spans (citing the popularity of mobile gaming (with generally short levels) as an example).
It really feels like people just take this quote Masuda made and run with it without understanding the meaning behind it.


For a region that’s supposed to be more competitive than everyone else, it’s a shame that I can’t recall a single fight being difficult. Maybe the postgame Hop battle with his box art but otherwise most Trainers didn’t give a challenge.
I thought some of the battles were challenging. Allistar's G-Max Gengar gave me a challenge. I remember my friend struggling both to Raihan and Leon the first time facing them. I won't say any of the battles are too difficult, but I didn't think they were 100% cake walks either.

As for me, I felt the exploration was the weakest aspect of the game, as you have two Galar Mines, and a pretty cool mystical forest, and that's about it. I think the Crowned Tundra will increase this aspect more than the Isle of Armor already has by not only being more diverse than the wild area, but having different landmarks to explore for Regis and whatnot.

Edit: Changed wording on one response.
 
Last edited:

janejane6178

Kaleido Star FOREVER in my heart <3
Hi.

Honestly, I like the Galar Region. It has landmarks and plots of land that gives it an unique feel. However, in it's main form (not counting the DLC), it's not as expansive and doesn't lend to hours of exploring as much as Hoenn, Sinnoh or Unova have to offer. I'm not really talking about the linearity of these games per sé, since the Gen5 games are incredibly linear, but have plenty of ways to explore the region. It's about the region feeling empty.

Best example: The Galar Mines. I honestly don't understand how GameFreak expects us to feel satisfied when those are the only caves in this region. There's nothing to them outside of following the same path. There's no feeling that you might 'get lost' or that it may be a challenge to go through. Compare that to entering Mt.Moon or Rock Tunnel for the first time and genuinely not knowing where exactly to go and which path leads to where. Heck, look at the Oreburgh Gate, it's one way in and then you exit on the other side, but there's a vast cave underneath waiting to be explored on the revisit, with different layers that invite you to visit the location several times as you get more HM moves on your Bibarel. And it's not just the Galar Mines that have this problem, it's basically every location that doesn't have a creek or lake next to it. I love the Glimwood Tangle, but outside of being a unique location, there's nothing left to do after you have gone through it once. Compare that to Pinwheel Forest and you'll know what I mean.

And that's about it for the region for me.

In terms of the characters, there's only one major thing that I really dislike about it - and this only counts for Sword. It's Gordie. It's the fact that he's a pompous Rock-type Gym Leader when he's the sixth gym leader you face. Rock-type should never have been considered for a gym in Galar after the first initial three - and especially if Kabu was made to look impressive and a hurdle. Especially compared to Melony, who has a tough combination of pokémon, including Zen Mode, Galar Darmanitan and Gmax Lapras. But come on. This guy has a Pokémon that's 4x weak to Grass and one that's 4x weak to Water and the other two don't offer any particular challenge: Stonjourner and.. Shuckle. Another missed opportunity about Gordie is that there's no theme to his team whatsoever and it's just a bunch of Rock-types thrown together, there's literally no cohesion and I don't see a reason why Coalossal is his main pokémon.

I get that they want to have separate gym leaders for the games, but there were plenty of types left to draw from over the Rock-type. There are more challenging types to use.. The Steel-type doesn't get used at all. Historically, the Steel-type is a good type to offer as the sixth challenge: Both Jasmine and Byron can be challenged as the sixth gym leader (Johto is a bit fluid, but she's generally considered the sixth) and you have a gym leader-styled battle with Molayne around the same point in Sun and Moon.

You could ask: What would you do with the Steel-type in Galar? Well, it's actually fairly obvious. You turn Gordie into a historian that researches Galar's general history and theme his team around that and it's actually incredibly easy, but hard to understand why they actually didn't do it in the first place:
- Gmax Corviknight: a knight.
- Aegislash/Doublade: a sword (and shield).
- Perrserker: a viking (which raided England).
- Mawile: a Morgan le Fay stand-in from the Arthurian tradition.

And that's how you have a themed, balanced and challenging opponent for the right point in the game - but somehow they opted for a cakewalk team with no balance or cohesion centered around a type that in previous generations you slaughtered either as the first or second gym. Olivia in S/M was worse, but Gordie just takes the cake.

And those are the two biggest missed opportunities in Galar in my eyes. What are yours?
I agree that Galar is not explorer.
But Kalos is, unlike what u said. U only mentioned Hoenn, Sinnoh and Unova
 

Spider-Phoenix

#ChespinGang
I still don't understand this. I know this was the reasoning for the exclusion of the Battle Frontier in ORAS so it's kind of dated but mobile gaming isn't becoming a substitute for consoles. Can they not just give players the option to choose their difficulty like in B2W2? Then you have USUM which, while not the Dark Souls of Pokémon, has some of the most difficult battles in the series. I just find this logic hard to justify when they gave a good middle ground years ago

Honestly, the only USUM battle I've found hard was Ultra Necrozma. Everything else was par on the course with previous games.
 

Locormus

Can we please get the older, old forum back?
I still don't understand this. I know this was the reasoning for the exclusion of the Battle Frontier in ORAS so it's kind of dated but mobile gaming isn't becoming a substitute for consoles. Can they not just give players the option to choose their difficulty like in B2W2? Then you have USUM which, while not the Dark Souls of Pokémon, has some of the most difficult battles in the series. I just find this logic hard to justify when they gave a good middle ground years ago

It's not about mobile gaming substituting console gaming. It's simply GameFreak adjusting the game difficulty level to the amount of time they expect the players will invest in it - with Masuda's argument being: Kids have access to way more games, through mobile (free) gaming. In their minds, giving us a hard game would make crank the threshold up for casual players and they'll lose interest, which will then move to mobile gaming (lets say: candy crush, flappy bird, etc).

It really feels like people just take this quote Masuda made and run with it without understanding the meaning behind it.

Except that I'm an adult that can read comprehensively.

The quote:
"Kids these days or even people who grew up playing Pokemon--everyone is a lot more busy. There are a lot more things competing for a person's time than there were back then. For example, there are so many free games you can play on your phone now, there's so many entertainment options, so making it a little easier to play is the reason for that."

So while I didn't directly quote Masuda (since I didn't feel bothered enough to look up the quote at the time), there's enough correlation between Masuda's "there are more things competing for a person's time then there were back then" and my "kids these days have shorter attention spans", mostly because the reasoning for my latter observation is that there are more options and that in general is cutting focus away from any singular game. I mostly agree with Masuda, but I just can't get behind the choices made.

I agree that Galar is not explorer.
But Kalos is, unlike what u said. You only mentioned Hoenn, Sinnoh and Unova

Of course there's more examples and yes, Kalos has a few bits that are worth exploring, but most parts of the game you visit are mandatory. I'm talking about examples like extra floors of a cave that open up later after you've already gone through the cave once, more islands being available as you explore or in the case of Unova, entire routes changing based on the season offering or denying access to previous areas based on snowfall for instance. In fact, Kalos has some of the early markings that showed how GameFreak was putting less effort into their routes/landmarks. Compare Dark Cave, Union Cave, the Oreburgh Gate and Connecting Cave, which are arguably at the same point in the games and have limited purpose other then being a short tunnel and you'll notice that Connecting Cave is the blandest of them all - with the Galar Mines later becoming even more boring (despite aesthetic looks). It's like GameFreak put two fancied up Diglett Caves in Galar and thought it would be enough to satiate the desire to explore.

I do concur that the Reflection Cave was fun to explore and that Terminus Cave is a generally welldone adventure cave.
 

janejane6178

Kaleido Star FOREVER in my heart <3
It's not about mobile gaming substituting console gaming. It's simply GameFreak adjusting the game difficulty level to the amount of time they expect the players will invest in it - with Masuda's argument being: Kids have access to way more games, through mobile (free) gaming. In their minds, giving us a hard game would make crank the threshold up for casual players and they'll lose interest, which will then move to mobile gaming (lets say: candy crush, flappy bird, etc).



Except that I'm an adult that can read comprehensively.

The quote:
"Kids these days or even people who grew up playing Pokemon--everyone is a lot more busy. There are a lot more things competing for a person's time than there were back then. For example, there are so many free games you can play on your phone now, there's so many entertainment options, so making it a little easier to play is the reason for that."

So while I didn't directly quote Masuda (since I didn't feel bothered enough to look up the quote at the time), there's enough correlation between Masuda's "there are more things competing for a person's time then there were back then" and my "kids these days have shorter attention spans", mostly because the reasoning for my latter observation is that there are more options and that in general is cutting focus away from any singular game. I mostly agree with Masuda, but I just can't get behind the choices made.



Of course there's more examples and yes, Kalos has a few bits that are worth exploring, but most parts of the game you visit are mandatory. I'm talking about examples like extra floors of a cave that open up later after you've already gone through the cave once, more islands being available as you explore or in the case of Unova, entire routes changing based on the season offering or denying access to previous areas based on snowfall for instance. In fact, Kalos has some of the early markings that showed how GameFreak was putting less effort into their routes/landmarks. Compare Dark Cave, Union Cave, the Oreburgh Gate and Connecting Cave, which are arguably at the same point in the games and have limited purpose other then being a short tunnel and you'll notice that Connecting Cave is the blandest of them all - with the Galar Mines later becoming even more boring (despite aesthetic looks). It's like GameFreak put two fancied up Diglett Caves in Galar and thought it would be enough to satiate the desire to explore.

I do concur that the Reflection Cave was fun to explore and that Terminus Cave is a generally welldone adventure cave.
Im currently replaying XY and I think that Kalos is so fun to explore. So many towns and cool places like: museums, castles, many shops. Galar doesnt even get close to that.
I dont think that adding new "wild areas" with the expansion packs, aka: empty areas without buildings/new towns, will solve that problem for Galar
 

Reinhardt

Well-Known Member
On the Galar region map, to the very West of the Wild Area (where there's just a cliff wall in the actual game), there's an area beyond a railway bridge that looks like it could've been a little beach where you could catch the likes of Krabby or Wingull, and could lead toward a little bit of sea where you can surf around and catch marine Pokemon. It's a shame there weren't more sea routes in the game other than Route 9, and a bit of the Wild Area with a beach that leads to a sea would've been great. I mean it would've made more sense than Wailmer just being in a little land-locked pond far away from the sea (how did it get there?).
 

Prince Amrod

Dragon Tamer
Ever since the full battle frontier was taken out, I think regions have suffered from a lack of post story options. The battle tower was OK but the variety given by the other facilities kept it enjoyable. Now Galar made it a grind to earn points with the tower, rectified only slightly by the addition of the type challenge. Should they opt to produce further dlc packs beyond the crown tundra, I would love to see a full return of the HGSS era frontier nestled in its own island inside a first gen Victory Road style mountain. Masses of exploration to be done, opportunity for more pokemon to be reintroduced and a range of options for earning battle points and testing out pokemon sets
 

Auraninja

Eh, ragazzo!
Except that I'm an adult that can read comprehensively.

The quote:
"Kids these days or even people who grew up playing Pokemon--everyone is a lot more busy. There are a lot more things competing for a person's time than there were back then. For example, there are so many free games you can play on your phone now, there's so many entertainment options, so making it a little easier to play is the reason for that."

So while I didn't directly quote Masuda (since I didn't feel bothered enough to look up the quote at the time), there's enough correlation between Masuda's "there are more things competing for a person's time then there were back then" and my "kids these days have shorter attention spans", mostly because the reasoning for my latter observation is that there are more options and that in general is cutting focus away from any singular game. I mostly agree with Masuda, but I just can't get behind the choices made.
The "shorter attention spans" is not something mentioned in the original quote and can't be rightfully assumed. Masuda is mentioning that mobile gaming introduces a plethora of different games to people. Also keep in mind that mobile games cost little to nothing and are easy to obtain since smart phones are becoming more universal.

In the end, Pokemon sort of has to compete with that market as well.
 

Ignition

Pancakes
I thought some of the battles were challenging. Allistar's G-Max Gengar gave me a challenge. I remember my friend struggling both to Raihan and Leon the first time facing them. I won't say any of the battles are too difficult, but I didn't think they were 100% cake walks either.
I still found them to be cakewalks and somehow a downgrade from previous generations. The only fight I remember that wasn't a sweep was a random Double Battle that had Hippowdon and Excadrill. Even after limiting myself to using no items in battle or Dynamax, I still find this game to be too easy for even Pokémon standards. I rarely hear anyone who has an issue with the games outside of the occasional Raihan.
Honestly, the only USUM battle I've found hard was Ultra Necrozma. Everything else was par on the course with previous games.
Honestly I don't think they are hard but I found it had actually strategy with the Totems and smart AI/good movepools. I do think they're the most difficult games but not by a significant margin.
It's not about mobile gaming substituting console gaming. It's simply GameFreak adjusting the game difficulty level to the amount of time they expect the players will invest in it - with Masuda's argument being: Kids have access to way more games, through mobile (free) gaming. In their minds, giving us a hard game would make crank the threshold up for casual players and they'll lose interest, which will then move to mobile gaming (lets say: candy crush, flappy bird, etc).
Yeah I get that it's not about replacing/substituting which is my entire point. There's aspects of the game already that tailors to veterans so I don't think an implementation of optional content/difficulty modes that caters to them is impossible without them keeping it easy for casuals to understand.
 

Auraninja

Eh, ragazzo!
Most of the time in Pokemon games, I never have to worry about having my team swept.
There are of course, exceptions like Ultra Necrozma, Cyrus's final battle in Platinum, and maybe that one from Colosseum.

There are different ways people experience the game, and I was one of those people who would try switching the party up.
There are also those exp. candies which I only really used post game.

Now is the game too easy, maybe, but in my own individual playthrough, I did find a couple of challenges to overcome.
 

Ignition

Pancakes
I'm not trying to devalue anyone's experiences but the initial question was what we felt were missed opportunities and I feel that was one of the biggest besides exploration and how short the game felt. But this isn't a thread about the lack of difficulty so I'll just leave it at that.
 

Auraninja

Eh, ragazzo!
I'm not trying to devalue anyone's experiences but the initial question was what we felt were missed opportunities and I feel that was one of the biggest besides exploration and how short the game felt. But this isn't a thread about the lack of difficulty so I'll just leave it at that.
That's fair.

On another note, I wish there were more mini-games or something in the Wild Area. I have noted that the Isle of Armor feels a lot more "busy" that the wild area, but it would be nice if the original wild area had a few more activities.
 

Wulava

Bidoof'd
Staff member
Moderator
For me, the whole Wild Area is a missed opportunity. I liked what they did with the Isle of Armor. Compared to it, Galar's Wild Area is just a vast wasted space. It could have had a tiny remote village, forests, ruins, and underground or underwater caverms. Could've had lots of trainers scattered around.
 
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