July302014

For years I (and every other Pokemon fan) have been dreaming of the definitive, omni-regional Pokemon game. Here’s how it could work:

Imagine being able to visit every Region in the Pokemon world.  For years fans have been drooling over such a prospect, and it’s always seemed out of reach due to the sheer size of the undertaking and little logistical things such as the level 100 cap, but here are some ideas.

(It’s worth noting that this is pretty much all technical-I don’t have a story in mind or anything)

Don’t worry about trying to make a grandiose 3D world

A top-down platform with an XY/ORAS aesthetic would do nicely.  Obviously a project like this would still be too large for a handheld system like the 3DS, but Nintendo can of course turn to whatever wired console they’re serving at the time.

Alter the Experience System

Cut the typical rates of gaining experience in half.  This would eliminate the need to raise the level cap.

Choose your starting Region and hometown

The Kanto-Johto-Hoenn-Sinnoh-Unova-Kalos progression isn’t really necessary at all.  The player could choose his/her starting point and choose which region to go to next after defeating the 8 local gyms and Elite 4.  The player could choose from among the towns that don’t contain gyms, give the player a requirement for their very first gym challenge based on the selection, and from there:

Sandbox Style

Freedom of movement from one town to another town of choice would create a more fluid, unique experience for the player.  Some towns and areas could remain less accessible than others (such as the only access to Blackthorn City being the Ice Path and a narrow north-south path through otherwise impassable mountains), while areas in less-harsh landscapes could be accessed on foot (imagine being able to walk directly from Violet to Goldenrod, and from there surf straight to Cianwood or Olivine). 

This would also imply a sort of leveled-enemy system—I’m imagining a bell-curve model that would determine the levels (and therefore the evolutionary forms) of wild Pokemon and trainers in the field.

The Gym System

I’m actually pretty proud of this one.  Each Gym Leader would have a roster of six Pokemon, with one or two, I guess, “ace” Pokemon.  Their teams would be generated from these rosters to have the same number of members as the Player at the time of the challenge (minimum of 2).  It would consist of the ace Pokemon, plus placeholders randomly generated from these rosters.  Some Leaders could even have lower legendary Pokemon in their rosters that only appear if the player has a full party.  It’s also a neat little bonus that if you lose, there’s no guarantee that you’ll face the same team when you try again.

The entire team would be leveled to match the player’s highest-leveled Pokemon in-game (party or PC).  I think this would be sufficiently challenging, and it could also provide for an interesting little personality test.  Having trouble with a gym? You can make the battle shorter by putting Pokemon in the box.  Still too much for you?  You can make it even easier, if you release your highest-leveled Pokemon.

Level system for HM/overworld moves

"Do I need the Thunder Badge to cut?" you might be asking yourself. "Am I back to square one in the next region?" you may think next as you begin your descent into total confusion.  Not at all!  Like I said before, freedom of movement is a huge part of this concept.  Each Pokemon could have one or two overworld skills, each with a level from 1-3.

A level 3 cutter can knock out thicker brush than a level 2 cutter.

A level 1 surfer would be slower than a level 2 or 3 surfer in open water, but could fit into tight little spaces.

A level 1 flier could take you to nearby towns that you’ve visited, while a level 3 flier could take you anywhere you’ve been in the region.

What About Version-Exclusivity?

Since It’s a single game, this concept wouldn’t work as-is.  So I suggest basing Pokemon availability on the gender of the player’s character (and let’s throw a “Neither” option in there while we’re at it!).  Pokemon wouldn’t be altogether unavailable, it would just be the time and place in which they appear that’s affected.

So these are my ideas.  Hope you like them and I hope that someday we actually get a game like this.

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