9. Make the Losses Matter
This one might just be me, but it’s making the list because I’m at the keyboard. One of the things that frustrates me about the existing Pokemon games is the fact that losses for the trainer are rendered completely irrelevant after the event itself. After the initial frustration and inevitable swearing fit (oh, just me again?) there is absolutely no mention or reference to the fact that the battle ever even took place.
Whether it be against a gym leader, your rival or even some lowly Rattata wielding youngster, once you’ve blacked out and crawled your way back to the Pokemon Center all is forgotten. For me there is one very basic change that can be made that would improve the overall experience of this competitive battling experience.
Say, for example, you head into a gym battle under-prepared and end up on the wrong side of a whitewash. Inevitably you’ll want to go back and claim that badge and claim back your pride. It’s a little confusing, then, when the gym leader talks to you as if you’ve never even met before. Why not have a second set of conversation available that references the trainer’s first visit? The feeling that all gym leaders have suffered from a backfired Amnesia attack would disappear, and a little banter may even spur the player on to make their revenge even sweeter.
And the potential for making the losses matter doesn’t end there. What if the battles against your rival could only be carried out once? If you lose then your rival could swagger about and hold it over your head until the next encounter when you’ll be damn sure to emerge victorious this time!
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This article was first posted on December 4, 2012