I made it to through the final four and defeated Iris, the Unova champion, the evening after my last Pokemon post.
Chamber of the final battle
It was pretty much inevitable that I would win sooner rather than. I had already made it through the final four to Iris on my second attempt. It was just a matter of tuning up my team a bit.
I used some of the stat increasing items I picked up along the way on my team, and bought a few more at the department store on Route 9. I trained LazTel my Azurmarill the Ice Beam move, which was a key weakness in Iris’ lineup. I used a few PP Ups to increase the number of times I could use key moves. As an example my only grass attack, Giga Drain on Wibla my Verizion, only had five uses, which was not enough. And I tossed out a couple Rare Candy level ups and made sure everybody was holding an item that would boost key aspects of their abilities.
All that, plus knowing now which abilities to use against which opponents meant that the run was pretty smooth. My victory was not in doubt.
My winning team
I still need to work out the best way to take pictures, but I think I am getting a little bit better. There, from the 6 o’clock position, moving clockwise, are:
And there we are. The last great battle, the main story arc is over, and roll the credits.
That last item is literal, when you finally defeat the regional champion, the game saves and then shows you the credits. It is one of the conventions of the series.
Of course, the game is not done yet. Not by a long shot. Technically, you are not even done with the story yet. There are still remnants of Team Plasma to encounter, some more key battles to fight, half a dozen key locations to visit, and legendary Pokemon to catch. In regards to that last, Pokemon White Version 2 was a bit stingy compared to its immediate predecessor, which let you catch one of the legendary Pokemon before the championship battle.
This is generally where the official guide book for a given Pokemon game tends to become very useful to me, as a lot of the end game stuff can be… obscure, for lack of a better word.
I know with enough patience I could figure a lot of it out. 12 year old me would have had no problem, current me is no longer motivated enough for that sort of thing. For example, in Pokemon X & Y, one of the legendary Pokemon you can catch post-story is Moltres, who has been around since the original games. You run into him pretty readily if you are stomping around in the tall grass where Pokemon show up. However, he flees immediately upon entering battle, so you cannot catch him. The “figuring it out” bit is that you have to encounter and lose him eleven times… and you can only find him once per day… before you can go to a specific spot for a chance to catch him. (And I only get Moltres because I chose Froakie as my starter Pokemon. It is convoluted, but that is part of the appeal of the series.)
I did not buy the official guide this time around, but the internet knows all. You can find guides in plain text, HTML, pictures, and even in video format. I just can’t sit over on the couch or in bed, away from my computer with the game in my hand and the book at my side, which is one of the aspects of the handheld console gaming I enjoy. Well, I can with the iPad in tow I guess, but I find web navigation much more efficient with a keyboard and mouse.
The upshot of this is that there is still a pile of Pokemon in the game to be caught.
And then there is the moving of Pokemon from the older DS generation games into Pokemon White Version 2 so I can use the Poke Transporter to send various Pokemon on a one-way trip to Pokemon Bank, where the 3DS generation Pokemon games will be able to access them.
Pokemon Bank – a deal at $5.00 a year
Getting the Pokemon out of Pokemon Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, HeartGold, or SoulSilver is a process that requires two Nintendo DS consoles. (Not a problem in our house, where we have five) You download a special game from the DS running one of the Pokemon Black and White series, pick six Pokemon you want to move over (usual restrictions apply, no Pokemon with hidden moves… never train hidden moves on your legendary Pokemon…), and then play a little game where you have to catch your chosen Pokemon before they will be moved over… because nothing is ever easy.
Aim and catch
This involves shooting Pokeballs at the Pokemon who are hopping around the screen or hiding behind bushes. There is a timer, and anything you don’t catch goes back, though you can load them up and try again. It seemed like it might be a chore at first, especially since the more rare Pokemon seem to move a lot faster. However, since I have never failed to catch all six in half the time allocated, it is probably okay. And you can do it as many times a day as you like, unlike the . Now I just have to figure out which Pokemon I really want to move over and where they are.
So Pokemon still to catch and Pokemon to move.
Along the way I think I also figured out why the DS generation Pokemon games are in short supply, with unopened copies selling for a premium most places. One of the things that Nintendo did as part of the changing of hardware generations was turn off all of the back end services for those games back in May. There is no Global Trade Station or other online content available for them any more. If you try to access anything like that… and by the time they got to Pokemon Black & White Version 2 there were quite a few features that required back end support… you just get an error indicating that the service is no longer available.
Unfortunately for Nintendo, all of those online features are heavily advertised on the various retail boxes and the sites dedicated to the various titles. So I suspect Nintendo decided to cut whatever liability it feels it might have in no longer supporting those online features by no longer shipping any of those titles. That Amazon is blowing out their back stock of Pokemon White Version 2 hints, at least to me, that Nintendo might have future plans for those titles. We shall see I suppose. But if you want a new, in box copy of one of the other DS generation Pokemon games, be prepared to pay a premium.
Finally, I returned to Pokemon Y to pull some Pokemon over from the Poke Transporter app, which led to some odd moments.
I said a while back that the new rendered graphics style of Pokemon X & Y felt pretty natural when I picked up the game. Then I went back to finish up Pokemon White and then Pokemon White Version 2, which involved a few weeks of binge playing. That transition wasn’t too bad either. I quickly got used to the sprite based graphics again. Visual closure is a wonderful thing and their overly blocky look on the bigger XL screen soon seemed quite natural.
Then, after all of that, I went back to Pokemon Y and it really felt strange. I think the most noticeable difference is that it just doesn’t feel like you see as much of the world around you as you do in the earlier games. That and your character and everything else is so much bigger on screen. It was a little disorienting upon my return.
However, after about 20 minutes my brain settled down and accepted the game as it was and I got back into that groove.
Now it is just the clean up and catching and breeding and such prep work while we wait around for Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire to come out this November. My daughter and I have already turned in our coin jar for an Amazon gift card and pre-ordered the titles. We’ll just need to find time to play them. November is going to be a busy month for releases.