Review of Pokémon Let’s Go

pokemonletsgo

I wasn’t always a big fan of Pokemon. Back when the original game came out in Europe I was close to twenty years of age. Based off clips I had seen, of the wholesome cartoon series, I dismissed Pokemon as being something that was just for kids. Twelve months later Final Fantasy IX awakened my passion for RPGs. Eager to try other titles in the genre, I decided to be less close-minded and give Pokemon Blue a chance. Turns out that the series, developed by Game Freak, can be enjoyed by youngsters and adults alike. At the time of writing I am fast approaching forty and have just beaten the twenty three hour story mode of Pokemon Let’s Go.

OVERVIEW

One of the reasons I was looking forward to this release is because it is set in the Kanto region – the same setting as the above mentioned Pokemon Blue. When it comes to Pokemon, just like Transformers, I am most familiar with generation one. It was a simpler time, when completing a Pokedex only required that you catch 151 critters. These days I hear that the species list of Pokemon surpasses over eight hundred! Some of the new Pokemon look cool, but others suffer from uninspired designs. When a developer starts to create Pokemon that resemble ice cream cones and key chains you know they are running low on ideas.

Technically speaking Let’s Go is a remake of Pokemon Yellow. Were the two differ is the manner in which you catch Pokemon. Yellow had players capturing Pokemon by weakening them first in combat. Let’s Go adopts a simpler approach, inspired by the mobile game it is named after. Catching a Pokemon is just like nabbing a woman. You throw your balls at them and hope they don’t run away. I personally liked the new system, as it spared me from suffering the frustration of accidentally killing Pokemon I was trying to recruit. My opinion would be different though, were I not someone who plays handheld mode exclusively. Switch owners who play docked on the TV will have to catch Pokemon with fiddly motion controls, rather than buttons. Nintendo thinks it is cute to simulate the action of hurling a Pokeball. If you prefer a traditional controller or are disabled tough luck.

GOT TO CATCH EM ALL

What makes capturing Pokemon in Let’s Go a blast is that you can see the buggers roaming through the bushes (like a creepy stalker). Gone are the days of random encounters. Yay! I no longer have the patience to battle Zubats every time I take a step forward. Should you spot a Pokemon that you want to add to your collection just walk up to them. If you have no desire to tangle with yet another Rattata, give them a wide berth. The option of targeting Pokemon by sight allows trainers to build up combos. Catching several Pokemon, of the same type, in a row rewards you with increased odds of finding rare Pokemon and Shinies (mutant Pokemon who have been born with a different pigmentation). Some Twitch channels make an income by streaming hunts for Shinies, which amounts to trapping the same Pokemon, over and over, for hours at a time. Man, I think I am in the wrong line of work.

For those of you worrying that Pokemon Let’s Go only involves throwing spheres at woodland creatures fear not. Turn based battles still exist in this game. In order to finish the story players need to defeat eight gym leaders, the Elite Four and any other trainers/children/fishermen who get in your way. Winning a Pokemon duel rewards you with cash and experience. When a Pokemon accumulates enough experience they level up, which may cause them to unlock new abilities or evolve into a new form. Another way of powering up your team is to exchange duplicate Pokemon for stat boosting candy. Yes, that is right. Candy makes you stronger. Those doctors who warned you that sweets will rot your teeth are liars. Devour confectionery and one day you too shall bulk up like The Rock.

VERDICT

My rating for Pokemon Let’s Go is a four out of five. Some hardcore fans won’t approve of how Let’s Go dumbs things down, by removing features found in other modern Pokemon titles. For a casual player, such as myself, the game is however fun. Many people have commented that Let’s Go is a tad easy, which I would have to agree. That said, I did lose a few matches during the course of my adventure. My losses were mostly due to my terrible sense of direction, rather than the opponents being tough. Somehow I ended up facing the Sixth Gym Leader, before beating the fourth and fifth one, as I took a detour leading to the wrong town. Oops! Perhaps I can also blame the losses on buying the Pikachu edition? I hear that the Eevee version is a bit easier, as the adorable pup has a better move set. As a superhero fan I couldn’t resist going on a journey with Pikachu though. He sounds a lot like Deadpool after all.

33 thoughts on “Review of Pokémon Let’s Go

    • I didn’t like how catching had been changed, back when it was first announced. Once I actually played the game however it won me over. It’s a divisive thing among fans. Many people are enjoying the Pokémon Let’s Go, but it’s not something that will appear to the hardcore crowd.

    • One thing that all fans agree on is that seeing the Pokémon on the map is a great new feature. I hope it replaces random encounters in the 2019 game. Catching duplicates isn’t so bad. You get stat boosting candy in exchange. People always used to catch multiple copies of a Pokémon anyway (to farm Shinies or find a Pokémon with better stats.)

      • Ah, see I was never bothered with shinies etc, I always jsut caught what I wanted and trained it. I think for me the problem is that the catching duplicates seems like a Pokemon Go concept, and I really couldn’t on with that particular game.

  1. I’m playing Eevee, and that was my thought as well — no way can Pikachu match Eevee’s amazing movepool. And some of the changes are so awesome, like having access to all Pokemon without a PC.

    • Eevee should be more versatile than Pikachu. That said, Pikachu can learn some awesome non-electric attacks from certain trainers, which help to round out his offence. I love being able to change your party without having to visit a PC. I think the PC should go the way of Blockbuster and die out. We don’t want to return Pokémon/DVDs at a certain location. Let us download what we want wirelessly.

  2. RE: “I dismissed Pokemon as being something that was just for kids … I decided to be less close-minded and give Pokemon Blue a chance. Turns out that the series, developed by Game Freak, can be enjoyed by youngsters and adults alike …”

    Plus all the hot 22-year old chicks in tight dresses that go to those upscale disco nightclubs are always very, very impressed when you mention that you have obtained ALL of the legendary Pokemon. They get so excited … then you can ask if they want to come back to your place and see your entire box.

    Show off that recently captured Mew. Take it from Denny Sinnoh, the little pocket monster is pure pantie peeler.

    • I had no idea sex appeal is directly linked to one’s Pokémon collection. Now that I think about it, paying $50 for the Pokeball accessory, which contains Mews, sounds like a good investment.

  3. The little Pokemon fan in me was wondering if this game was any good 😀 Good to hear it is 🙂 The whole accidentally killing Pokemon and constantly having to battle Rattata or Pidgey every time you walk into grass, was so frustrating. Having that removed sounds like a good improvement 😀
    Like you, I wouldn’t be able to resist going on a journey with Pikachu, either. Though eevee may have better abilities, Pikachu just a cute cool little guy. How could anyone not want to go on an adventure with him 🙂

    • In past games my party would get too powerful and would end up one shotting any wild Pokémon I tried to capture. One of the perks about the Go system is that I don’t have to worry about that. No random encounters is a blessing too. I hated having to constantly fight bats, in the caves, during the original game.

      Pikachu is adorable, especially when you visit the interact mode were you can feed him berries or play with him. Eevee has a big fanbase too. Most of the people I know got the Eevee edition. Plus some hipsters buy that version because they deem Pikachi too mainstream.

      • Hahahaha, I love that about some hipsters. They end up making the non-mainstream option mainstream, due to the huge number of them that wanted to the non-mainstream option. 😂😂
        But awww, interact mode sounds so adorable. I would buy this game just to play with Pikachu 😊

  4. This game definitely looks like a lot of fun. Ultimately I decided not to get it so far since all my Pokemon time gets channeled into Go, but Let’s Go is definitely a nice way to mix up the mechanics a bit. I wonder if it’s success will ultimately start to shift the way the main games are played or not. I could still see myself getting this game at some point down the line though.

    • Let’s Go is a nice alternative for rainy days, when you don’t feel like going outside to nab Pokémon. One thing that’s worth mentioning is that later in the story you gain the ability to transfer your Go collection into the game.

      I think some fans fear that future Pokémon games will adopt the mechanics of Let’s Go, which is why they have been vocal about not liking the simplified catching system. My impression is that Let’s Go will just be treated as a spin-off and mainline games will remain the same.

  5. I’m more of a hardcore Pokemon gamer. I decided to skip this one, waiting for the next Pokemon game on the switch that suppose to be coming at the end of next year. Good Review.

    • After enjoying Pokémon Let’s Go I can’t wait to play next year’s game. If said title has traditional mechanics plus the quality of life features of Let’s Go I am sure you will like it. Let’s Go was probably made to give fans something to play until then. Don’t be surprised if many of the graphical assests of this game get used in the 2019 release.

  6. I wish candy will make you stronger as I have a sweet tooth. Such wishful thinking. Too much sweets increased my visit to the dentist. I rather avoid it at all cost.

      • All this candy talking made me go out and bought candy instead of the game. Just brush teeth and floss religiously during work hours so you can avoid the dentist. That’s what the people do where I work.

  7. This game looks like it surprised people, the initial reaction I saw to this is so much different to what I’ve been reading since it’s release. I know that I’ll play this at some point, I can’t resist a good pokemon game.

    • When the catching system was announced everyone seemed to hate it. Some folks have been won over however, once they gave the game a chance. People should not judge something until they try it…. well except for Fallout 76. Everyone slagged that game off, prior to release, and it turned out to be a mess like most predicted.

      • It’s true, in most cases people should wait for the final product before making a verdict. I think people just like to complain about things when it initially doesn’t show what they want to see. I’m not a Fallout fan, I only played one of the games and put it down very quickly.

  8. This game showed me once and for all to not take fanboy and internet consensus as the determining factor when deciding whether to pick a game up or not. Good to know the pitiful attempt by fanboys to have this game fail financially…failed. Get this game when I buy a Switch, I will. Besides, I have wanted a main console Pokemon game for YEARS and we finally got one.

    • It’s unfair to judge something before it comes out and people have had a chance to actually play it. Pokémon Let’s Go didn’t win over everyone, but I count myself as one of the people who was impressed. The internet sometimes gets their predictions right though. From what I have seen the backlash towards Fallout 76 and Ghostbusters was justified.

      • True.

        In the case of Fallout 76 it was fanboys wanting to give it a shot BECAUSE it’s Fallout instead of hating it because it looked like “Pokemon for newbs”. As for Ghostbusters 2016…A LOT went wrong with that one. Still think the movie was average myself but yeah, so much was wrong on both sides.

    • Yep. People who work out or try to develop their sense of humour are wasting their time. To snag someone you just need to work on aim and throwing skills. I imagine that is why basketball players are so popular.

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