Friday, November 8, 2013
Pokémon Sapphire journal - entry two
I’m already noticing a decent challenge factor from Sapphire, and I think this is brought on by two fronts. First off, the game limits the types of Pokémon you have access to early on. There are plenty of different Pokémon you can catch, all of them newcomers to generation III, and as a result, I give this angle much higher marks than the approach that Platinum took in throwing a bunch of old and boring Pokémon at you during its first few hours. Between my Sableye, Shroomish, Wingull, and Whismur, I feel like I have a decently rounded-out team for only being four hours into the game. I also caught two electric types - Plusle and Electrike – though I am currently unsure as to which I want to add to my party. Neither would prove highly beneficial at the moment, as the next gym is run by electric Pokémon expert Wattson.
And as much as I enjoy having a nice variety of Pokémon typings in my party, I have yet to encounter any Rock or Fire Pokémon in the wild (either one of which would make for a solid counter to the slew of Electric types I am set to take on). I know the Electric gym won’t be flat out impossible to trump with my current party, but I expect it will be rather challenging, especially if the first rival battle with May was any indicator of the overall difficulty factor of Pokémon Sapphire. Having just come off my playthrough of Pokémon Y, Sapphire certainly boasts a big difference in terms of its degree of difficulty.
I appreciate the fact that routes have thus far been relatively short, but also rather fully packed with trainers, items, berries, and fresh types of wild Pokémon. I feel like I’m getting a solid return on my battling/training without having to rely too heavily on potions (which is doubly nice, seeing as the reward money you earn from battles in Sapphire is seemingly minimal in comparison to other entries in the series). Distractions including package deliveries and a couple encounters with Team Aqua have been brief, and did well to avoid upsetting the pacing of Sapphire’s main focus. It is a little strange that Sapphire just sort of dumps Team Aqua into the story without much of an introduction, but oh well – I never expected the machinations of a villainous team hell-bent on the expansion of the sea to live up to the caliber of deviousness conveyed by Team Galactic or Team Plasma.