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Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Review: The best thing about Pokemon Scarlet and Violet is that it’s still jeweled.

Play Pokemon Scarlet and Violet for Switch

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Review – Pokemon Scarlet and Violet offer some of the best and funniest experiences I’ve had on the series. Unfortunately, there are also some aspects of the game that take a step back from previous entries. It has many strengths worth playing, but its shortcomings keep it from reaching peak performance.

This ninth generation of Pokémon takes place in Paldea, the first fully open world region. Other Pokemon titles on the Nintendo Switch have made bite-sized attempts at an open world (Sword and Shield’s wild area and Legends Arceus’s open biomes), but this is the first time you’ll be able to travel and choose in any direction for the entire game which challenges take on in any order.

Paldea’s open world works well, and I think it does because there are three paths to take instead of a single storyline, breaking up any potential monotony or forced path. As usual, one of the routes includes the Gym Challenge of collecting eight badges and competing against the Pokémon League. This time the game also features a separate story about the mysterious Titan Pokémon and another following Team Star, a rebellious group of students at your school.

Since you can traverse these paths simultaneously, I’ve traveled across the map at my own pace, taking on each’s challenges in the order that I found most interesting. If I felt a challenge was too difficult, I would leave and come back later. There is no level scaling, and while this feature might have worked well, I was perfectly fine going back to the more difficult areas later.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Review: open-world games Full of interesting content to Explore

When it comes to open-world games, many players worry that the map will become so big that it will no longer contain any interesting content. I didn’t feel that way while playing. Wild Pokémon appear in the overworld like they did in Pokémon Legends: Arceus, so I’ve always been on the lookout for rare species and shinies. There are also many item drops around the map that reappear over time, so even returning to an area I’ve been to before yielded something new.

Scarlet and Violet also took inspiration from Legends: Arceus, riding Pokémon to navigate the world. This time you have the opportunity to ride the most important legend of the game from the beginning of the game. Though limited at first, you can hone your travel skills on any of the story paths, eventually gaining the ability to climb, glide, and more. This kept the game balanced by making it harder to access the harder areas of the map before I was ready for it.

The new Pokemon designs in this generation are awesome. I end up loving all three starters when fully developed. Animals that have been in high demand for years now have a Pokemon equivalent, like a dolphin, peacock, and flamingo. Some of the new Pokémon have completely unique ways of evolving that we’ve never seen before.

I’m a fan of Terastalization, this generation’s gimmick that assigns Pokemon a Tera type that can be different from their usual type. The Pokémon can transform into a beautifully crystalized version of itself (I affectionately refer to this as “Bejeweled Mode” or “Swarovski Crystal Mode”), and it really changes the strategy of battles since a Pokémon can essentially transform into any type now can transform, such as a Pikachu with a water-Tera-type.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Review

There’s also a new concept called Paradox Pokemon, which is based on species from the past (in scarlet) and the future (in purple) – these special species give new life to old designs and tie into the game’s story after all three paths are up completed.

Speaking of story, Pokemon Scarlet and Violet probably have the best in the series. Initially, the storylines on the three paths are nothing special and are fairly typical of any other Pokémon game: the opposing team tries to make your life harder while you collect gym badges to become the region’s champion – we were there , have done this often.

But then the story really starts in the game’s ending sequence, after all those other storylines are finished. Without spoiling anything, the final installment of the game is absolutely gorgeous, much more mature than I ever expected and contains by far the most memorable final fight in the history of the series.

The final positive that I would like to address is the multiplayer experience of the game. Given Nintendo’s history with online multiplayer in games, I didn’t initially have high hopes for Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. But my reservations were proven wrong when I was quickly able to team up with three other friends and play together.

The cool thing about the multiplayer experience here is that you can play the entire game independently while in a friend’s world. In other words, I was able to take on a gym challenge while two of my friends teamed up for a Tera Raid battle while the fourth friend on the other side of the map worked to complete his Pokedex. We met to take selfies, make sandwiches for a picnic, and ride our legendary Pokemon together.

Pokemon Scarlet Multiplayer Online Legendary Miraidon

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet clearly have many strengths. But I also have to acknowledge his flaws, starting with the donphan in the room.

The game is ugly. It’s like, really bad.

I miss the soft, stylized graphics of Pokemon Legends: Arceus. The scarlet and purple textures are difficult to view, especially in environments like mountains or fields where it appears as if it is a single texture repeated in a pattern. The graphics feel rushed and unpolished.

The game suffers from noticeable technical issues even with the latest 1.1.0 patch. While I didn’t experience anything seriously game-breaking, the framerate issues are distracting, the character and Pokemon models can be buggy, and there have been a few instances of the game software crashing entirely.

It’s embarrassing that the game was allowed to release in this state, and honestly, it’s inexcusable. Nintendo’s standards are usually much higher for the games it releases.

Aside from the graphical and technical issues, there are some other aspects of Pokemon Scarlet and Violet that feel like a step backwards for the series.

pokemon scarlet purple city

A notable example is the game’s cities. There is hardly anything to do in them. It’s a shame, because visually its exterior looks quite inspired, but you can’t enter the vast majority of the houses and buildings. The ones you can “walk into” simply bring up a shop menu, and multiple cities share the exact same shops with the same exact inventories. I stopped getting excited about finding new cities because they were so empty and boring.

I was also disappointed with the outfit customization. What I had thought to be a staple in Pokemon games has been remarkably stripped down to the most basic of functions. You can still buy accessories for your character, like sunglasses and bags, but this time you’re limited to school uniforms. There are four choices, one for each season, and they are the same options for both genders.

Scarlet players are locked in orange uniforms, while violet players are locked in purple. The uniforms were a constant reminder to me throughout the game that my character is a student. I missed expressing my own personality through an outfit, especially when I connected with my friends online and we all looked exactly the same.

While I was glad that wild Pokémon are back in the Overworld instead of through random encounters, I can’t help but miss Pokémon Legends: Arceus’ catching mechanic. Not including it here was a missed opportunity. In such a large, open world, I sometimes felt a bit slowed down by the combat. It would have been nice to have the second catch mechanic as an option.

While I enjoyed all three paths in the game, only one of the storylines has any interesting depth, and it only comes at the very end of the game. I suspect many players will end up not completing all three paths to get to the best part of the overarching story. The pacing could have been much better as it feels like all the best ideas have been saved for the last two hours.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Review: Conclusion

Pokemon Scarlet Violet Tera Raid Battle Pokeball

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet do a lot of things right, and the gameplay looping is undeniably addictive. It’s a shame that so much conversation will revolve around its graphical and technical flaws; If it wasn’t for that, these would be the best main series Pokemon games since HeartGold and SoulSilver on the DS.

It’s so frustrating. The game is fun. I’ll always wish it had taken Game Freak another year, or maybe even just a few more months, to polish what’s dragging it down.

But I won’t lie; I plan to spend many more hours in-game, completing my Pokedex, challenging Tera Raid battles online with my friends, and hunting for Shinies. Pokemon Scarlet and Violet only have a kind of tinge that makes it still worth overlooking the flaws.

Criticism of Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Review

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Review Highlights

ProsCons
Open world model is well done.
Some of the best Pokemon designs in a long time.
Three story paths instead of one add substance to the gameplay.
Multiplayer actually works well.
Cities are remarkably boring.
Outfit customization has taken a major step backwards.
Pokemon Legends: Arceus catching mechanism is gone.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Game Info

Release dateNovember 18, 2022
Developergambling addict
PublisherNintendo
ConsolesNintendo switch

Janvi Rajput

I'm Janvi Rajput, Founder Of Spotinkling.com. I love To Write and Explore.

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