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My Thoughts on Pokemon Scarlet and Violet

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet dropped last week and were met with a ton of controversy. From a litany of glitches to outrage over the starters, it can't escape the fans' wrath. However, there are some fans that appreciate the game's various aspects. I'm one of those fans that have fallen in love with Scarlet and Violet.

Let me paint a picture for you. Since Pokemon X and Y, I've been relatively disappointed with the Pokemon series. Sun and Moon were terrible, in my opinion. The EV training system was confusing and the Island Kahunas, while nice, were underwhelming. Sword and Shield was better, but I stopped playing after a month.

Part of my disappointment was the lack of depth in the game. Granted, you can find that in Sword and Shield's DLC packs. But it wasn't enough to sway me aside from going to the Battle Tower all the time.

That changed with Scarlet and Violet, where you have an aftergame story of stopping pokemon from the past and future. You can also participate in tournaments, collect any items you missed in Paldea, and study at the Academy. Such depth hasn't been seen since Generation 5.

That leads me to my next point: the storyline. Normally, Pokemon has a basic formula: battle eight gym leaders, take down the criminal syndicate and defeat the Pokemon Champion. Scarlet and Violet lets you choose which storyline you want to tackle first (there are three main storylines), taking you all over Paldea. You don't have to battle the gym leaders, nor do you have to battle them in any particular order.

The storyline even had some emotional parts, especially if you're a pet owner. If you want to know what I'm talking about, pick up the game and find out for yourself! Anyways, there's more to like about the game itself, such as the starters.

I've fallen in love with my Quaxly. Aside from it being extremely adorable, it also has a great late-game evolution. Its final form, Quaquaval, knows Aqua Step, which boosts its speed every time it hits. Meowscarada is another phenomenal starter, with breathtaking speed and a diverse movepool.

I forgot to mention the best part of the game: the open-world aspect. Normally, Pokemon has a set map featuring some towns (a large city being one of them) and a Pokemon League. In Scarlet and Violet, you can explore at will, finding numerous items and TMs along the way. That's what makes the aftergame much better; you don't know what else you missed and you can explore more of the land. That's especially true if you're not confined to a particular gym order or storyline order.

Some fans might be upset by the new Pokemon games and the direction they've taken. However, I'm happy to see Scarlet and Violet take a new turn and try something different. I definitely recommend giving it a shot and seeing for yourself!

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