North Texas Daily

New Pokemon DLC shows signs of promise for the series

New Pokemon DLC shows signs of promise for the series

New Pokemon DLC shows signs of promise for the series
February 01
20:24 2020

Earlier in January, the Pokemon company held a video announcement for plans regarding the Pokemon games being released this year. Alongside the news of a beloved spin-off series making its return on the Switch, Game Freak announced that an expansion pass for “Pokemon: Sword and Shield” will be released. As someone who was harshly critical of Game Freak’s decisions in the past, I’m happy to say that this new DLC looks very promising.

In my prior coverage of the latest Pokemon games, I expressed concerns that Game Freak was putting less work and content into their newer games, especially when compared to older ones. Since then, my copy of “Pokemon: Shield” came in and I finally got to play the game myself. I beat the game and caught all 400 of the “Pokemon available to me.”

The game did present many needed improvements to the series. The game’s main attractions, “The Wild Area” was a joy to explore and play in, and I absolutely adore all the new Pokemon and other features like the raid battles. However, the overall content in the game was still lacking for me personally. The routes and dungeons in the game were extremely linear and lacking, the story wasn’t as engaging as past entries and in-game animations were just as stiff and underwhelming as I feared. I enjoyed my time with the game, but it felt like I was playing a 3DS game on a Switch console.

Thankfully, the new DLC for “Sword and Shield” seem to be expanding on the parts of the game I loved the most and directly combat my complaints regarding a lack of content. The expansion pass is being sold for $30 per version of the game and will give you access to “The Isle of Armor” in June 2020 and “The Crowned Tundra” in Fall 2020. Both of this expansion will include a brand new “Wild Area,” where new gameplay mechanics, new forms and transformations of ‘Pokemon,’ and over 200 returning ‘Pokemon’ that were lost to the National Dex cut will be included.

Thirty dollars might be a bit pricey, but compared to Game Freak’s older business model, this change to DLC is a fantastic choice. In the past for almost every generation of Pokemon, Game Freak would release a “third version” after the release of the first two games, that usually included more features and/or more Pokemon. For example, Generation Three had an “Emerald” version released after the “Ruby” and “Sapphire” versions while Generation Four’s “Diamond” and “Pearl” had “Platinum” as their third version. These newer versions were sold at full price, and back when Pokemon had more content, you could argue it might’ve been worth it.

However, Game Freak slowly started to put less content in their games and their final “third versions” were massively disappointing. “Ultra Sun” and “Ultra Moon” had little to no changes compared to their predecessors that warranted them being valued at the same price.

As a fan, I was conditioned to fear the announcement of a new $60 game that would have little to no changes to the ones I just completed, and instead I was warmly greeted with a $30 expansion that looks to give me the lack of content that the base game left me craving. 

A common argument I’ve seen is that these features should’ve been included in the base game, or should be sold for free. Just as I’ve said before, “Sword and Shield” had to release alongside other additions to the franchise, like the anime and card game, so it couldn’t be delayed. Considering Game Freak’s staff is extremely small, this content would in no way have been ready to release last year, and I’m glad they’re putting all their effort into making new content for an existing game rather than wasting it on a third version. As for the latter argument, people work on video games and deserve to be paid for that work.

I will say though it is bittersweet regarding the returning 200 Pokemon. I’m glad they’re back, but it does feel a little scummy that they’re being essentially resold to me. Thankfully, these new Pokemon are not actually locked behind a paywall. “Sword and Shield” will be updated alongside the release of the DLC so players without the DLC can either use the upcoming “Pokemon Home” application to transfer those Pokemon from prior games, or receive them in trades from players with the DLC. 

While some of the circumstances for “Sword and Shield” are still a shame, Game Freak’s decision to move to the DLC model is a great step for them and is very promising for future entries in the series.

Featured Illustration: Jeselle Farias

About Author

Matthew Payne

Matthew Payne

Related Articles

0 Comments

No Comments Yet!

There are no comments at the moment, do you want to add one?

Write a comment

Write a Comment

Search Bar

Sidebar Thumbnails Ad

Twitter Feed

North Texas Daily @ntdaily
@Mizecarter: Here very soon I'll be covering "Crips & Cops" a meeting about Denton police's relation to the disability community hosted by the Disability Inclusion Society. @ntdailyhttps://t.co/Yu4DM3iJk3
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
@MiloMihaltses: My thoughts on where UNT football stands in recruiting.Give it a read 👀 https://t.co/vlhQTFnXYE
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
@kevoooandres: I helped write the editorial about early voting! Check that out along with all the other brilliant stories in this week's issue! https://t.co/D65ZNrR1Fg
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
COLUMN: Why North Texas football should have hope of retaining, attracting future recruits📝 @MiloMihaltses 🖼️ @pastellivi https://t.co/nTM2KwJoIE
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
@IleanaGarnand: Bob Brown, #UNT Senior Vice President for Finance & Administration, says Spring 2021 has a 15% increase of courses offered in-person. In accordance to CDC guidelines, the university will also offer more on-campus events. "The ultimate goal is to increase activity on campus"
h J R

Sidebar Bottom Block Ad

Flytedesk Ad

Instagram