The next generation of Pokemon is almost upon us and I couldn’t be more excited. After a busy day at work on Tuesday I was lucky enough to be able to sit down with my sister (as we always do when new Pokemon-related games come out) and play through the demo.
The demo is set in Hau’oli city where we meet the local Pokemon Professor Kukui and one of our rivals/allies Hau and set off on a journey through the city and Ten Carat Hill. The city seems to be a coastal-type resort town where people come to see the sights with their Pokemon. The visuals are simply stunning but sometimes the fixed camera angles can make it hard to navigate through the town properly and find specific buildings. While it doesn’t make the game unplayable, it certainly is a little jarring, however it could be fixed with the addition of a manual camera angle option using the L and R buttons to alter the angle to ones desire. Maybe in the main game a feature like this might exist, time will tell.
The main character is given a Greninja to participate in Pokemon battles with. The first thing I noticed about the battle interface is that you can now see how many stages of stats you have increased or reduced on your Pokemon or the opposing Pokemon which is a fantastic way to keep track of your Pokemon’s stats in battle. For example, when using Defense Curl, your Pokemon’s defense in battle goes up by one stage with an arrow indicating this.Throughout our travels in the city and the island itself we come across the game’s villainous team, Team Skull! This team are clad in black clothing and the grunts wear bandanas over their faces which results in a a goth-style look. After beating Team Skull, the character gets to explore Ten Carat Hill which is where we get to catch some Pokemon and battle some trainers. The character eventually gets to a cave where Professor Kukui sets a trial. The trial involves capturing Pokemon on camera akin to the likes of Pokemon Snap. You take photos of Jangmo-o and Hakamo-o and then face off against the Totem Hakamo-o in battle. In this battle, using Battle Bond, we get to see Greninja change into its Ash-Greninja form. The form looks impressive but it is yet to be seen whether other Pokemon will be getting the same treatment or whether it is just an exclusive feature for Greninja.
After completing the trial you can complete extra challenges to gain additional items to send to the main series game when the full versions of Sun and Moon come out. There are also additional secrets to be found which I won’t spoil for you here. However I would recommend talking to people on different days.
Overall, I loved the demo and I look forward to seeing the full game when it comes out.