Pokémon Sun & Moon: Riding Charizards, Alola forms and Exeggutor fandom

Here we are again with another Pokémon Sun & Moon update with some striking additions to the game and the series in general. Sun & Moon are looking to be some of the most diversifying games yet given certain aspects a completely new make over. So what is coming your way in November?

First off Exeggutor, Vulpix, Ninetails, Sandshrew and Sandslash have all been given ‘Alola Forms’. This means that they look different with all except Exeggutor becoming ice types. Exeggutor becomes a striking palm tree which is part dragon and is quite the monstrosity I must say. Ninetails is Ice/Fairy and Sandshrew & Sandslash are Ice/Steel.I can feel a fandom growing for our grass type friend already.

vulpix

ninetails

sandshrew

sandslash
Pokémon types stand out a lot in this game as we have seen so far and aforementioned. They haven’t stopped yet because once again there are some interesting dual-types. This reminds me of the Pokémon cards around gen four and five where a Pokémon like Typhlosion and Ampharos were designed as psychic and steel types.

First off we have Minior which is a rock/flying type and has the special ability ‘shields down’. Once shields down is used, the brown look will break off as you can see with the cracks in the image. This will then reveal one of four sprites who could be relevant to seasons.

oricorio

Another Pokémon with different looks (which is like what they did with Deerling), Oricorio has four different looks. This time they are based on different types and also have different dances. My personal favourite is the Pom-Pom style which is like a cheerleader. Obviously these Pokémon reflect different dances but adds interesting variety. They will copy other Pokémon’s dance moves as well as their special ability.

Gumshoos

Yoongus has an evolution and that is Gumshoos who is a normal type Pokémon. Already the internet are saying this looks like Donald Trump but personally, it looks like an old man who is annoyed at the younger generation. Gumshoos’ special abilities are Stakeout and Strong Jaw.

mudbray

One of the cutest looking Pokémon this list, Mudbray which looks like a donkey, is the base evolution form of Mudslade. It is a ground-type with the special ability Own Tempo and Stamina.

Finally, we have the grass-type praying mantas Pokémon Fomantis and its evolution form Lurantis. Their special ability is Leaf Guard and have a new move called Solar Blade. This looks like a combination of Leaf Blade and Solarbeam.

New additions to the game include riding on Pokémon. This is like Riding a Gogoat or Rhyhorn in X & Y but, apparently this time is a Pokémon service. The Pokémon you can use include Mudslade on the ground, Sharpedo in the water and Charizard in the air. That’s right, you can ride on a Charizard! Character appear to be wearing unique clothing when riding the Pokémon as well. This references early shots of a Blastoise on a vehicle where Pokémon look to be used as services to help people.

riding

There is a new battle mode as well in the game which is the ‘island challenge’. Here trainers appear to fight off against four different types: grass, water, fire and electric which all have different landscapes and trainers to match. One of those includes the Lush Jungle. After defeating these trainers you will face four ‘totem Pokémon’ which includes Yoongus. These Pokémon will have a high defence and call upon another Pokémon to face you…so it’s two on one. After clearing the trails you are left to face the ‘Kahunas’ which includes Hala who has been seen earlier on in the game.

island challenge

Finally, the new addition to the game is a new way to attack. These are called ‘Z moves’ and a Pokémon reacts to this Z-power which is similar to Mega Evolution in X & Y. Pikachu, Rowlet, Popplio and Litten all have these moves and they appear pretty destructive. This includes: ‘Gigavolt Havoc’, ‘Bloom Doom’ (that one is quite cute), ‘Inferno Override’ and finally ‘Hydro Vortex’. I wonder if this will have anything to do with legendary Pokémon Zygarde.

z movea

Pokémon toy maker Tomy announced they will be making a ‘Z-ring‘ toy in relation to the device in the game and will have little pieces for the different Pokémon move types. Like The Pokémon GO Plus, this may interact with the game.

Stay tuned for any further Sun & Moon updates right here!

The final Splatfest is upon us with one important question: Callie or Marie?

Splatoon has been one of the most popular and successful titles on the Wii U along with Mario Kart 8 and Super Mario Maker. It has been Nintendo’s first real look into online multiplayer shooter and really its first major step online besides Mario Kart. Each month has seen a theme for a special event called ‘Splatfest’ and Nintendo announced the last one will happen at the end of July.

Splatoon has been one of my favourite games in the last year and has been one of the titles that Nintendo has kept plugging and updating since its release. A couple a weeks ago there was a new weapons pack added which presumably will be the last and was launched in the run up to the ‘travel the world or space’ Splatfest. In the upcoming weeks there will be new amiibo being launched of Splatoon mascots Callie and Marie and 2nd generation inklings, but if the game is to be no longer updated, is this just a sweet send off from Nintendo?

It is debatable whether we will see a second instalment of Splatoon as we do not know much about the Nintendo NX. For this reason we do not know if there will be multiplayer or online on the game. With no more Splatfest’s, it will be interesting to see how the game continues with the lack of snail endorsement to players. Snails are prizes that are given to players after participating in a Splatfest – the more you participate, the more you earn. Each item of clothing as a different ability such as speed or defence and snails can enable you to change that on the clothes you want to wear.

leave timehere is one of the abilities which is the ‘last ditch effort’.

Splatfest is a tournament in Splatoon where you choose one side. In the past there has been Spongebob vs Patrick and Pokémon Red vs Blue. You contest to climb up ranks of fiend, defender, champion and king and from then can collect wins for your team. The team with most victories and team votes will be the winner. In the last Splatfest, players are allowed to vote for their favourite map to be featured in the game. Instead of 24 hours hours, the Splatfest will take place over two days.

Director Yusuke Amano has said that if there is a lot of support from fans (which now doubt there will be), he would like to make a sequel. Splatoon is a multiplayer shooter which has a multitude of weapons such as long range shooters, snipers, short range guns, rollers and paintbrushes. Instead of firing bullets, players fire ink with the aim to cover ground. The most covered wins. You can get kills and also player rank battles which include tower control and base capturing.

amiibo

There is also a single player game that lets players learn the game but also face an interesting array of bosses. The game is very modern with a focus on fashion and music as Callie and Marie are singers who sing throughout the games and will have music videos unlocked from their amiibo. What is missing from the game is private lobbies and voice chat. Games also do not end if players disappear and on top of this players cannot rejoin. Splatoon does become very frustrating and it is probably a good thing there isn’t voice chat.

What I would have liked to have seen would be a better incorporation of amiibo from other series for new skins and more rank battle games. Expansions to sizes of maps and the amount of players would also be a nice addition. It’s sad to see one of my favourite games coming to an end as the Splatfest is one of my favourite game-types. I hope Nintendo carries on with multiplayer titles and carries on with the Splatoon series.

Digimon Tri to get English dub (Spoilers included)

On September 15th, American cinemas will be treated to the first part (Saikai) of the six-part Digimon Tri movie series. The series has already released two parts in Japan, the second being Ketsui and will see its third release in September. I expect once shown in the cinema, an English dub will be available online.

Digimon Tri takes place six years after the original series and follows on from Digimon Adventure 02. The absence of the second Digi-destined is not really addressed, but there are hints they are in the Digital World. Unlike Digimon Adventure, this series doesn’t treat the Digi-destined kindly with attention to school, teenage life and the issues of growing up. Along with a new art style, the series is a modern anime with festivals, romance and spa trips instead of the earlier seasons’ Digital World focus. It appears at first that the characters are becoming more destined as they grow up, but that all changes once there’s an unexpected disturbance.

The show presents a better idea of the destruction caused by Digimon fighting instead of a Power Rangers approach where a city is destroyed and is fine the next day. It’s a show that has taken what the originals did, but has been inspired from other anime genres such as slice of life.

digimontri

It appears that their could be a separate timeline seeing as Kari and TK have the second generation digivices, Tai still has his goggles and as aforementioned no second digi-destined. You may not get much out of Saikai in terms of Digimon battles, however what we do see is a nice throw back to the original series. What you will find is character development as the movie is split into six parts. Tai and Matt feud again, but this time whether Digimon should fight as Tai is unsure where he stands anymore. Joe cowardly tackles responsibilities such as education which makes his character more frustrating than ever. Mimi questions her flamboyant nature. They take what was familiar in the first season and make it more realistic and relatable for their fans who have grown up.

I previously spoke with Coleen O’Shaughnessey and Jeff Nimoy who played the roles of Sora and Tentamon in the original series. They said if asked they would reprise their roles they would definitely take the opportunity and so it will be interesting to see if they will be featured.

New characters and Digimon have also been introduced into the series. It seems like this series has taken an influence from Digimon Tamers. The reason for this idea is that there are more people who know about the Digimon’s existence and have been working undercover. New characters include Daigo Nishijima and Maki Himekawa who have been monitoring the digi-destined. Another influence from Tamers is the focus on Digimon being data. Like computer data, Digimon are manipulated to become evil through a virus and turn into data when defeated. Looking like data and glitching out is different, but the interception of digital/electronic devices from the movie are still a major part. The Digital World itself envisions a more computer-like aspect than the originals and reminisces the movie with empty space surrounded by code.

The series is full of nostalgia for fans of the originals who have grown up and lost touch with other series’ down the line. There’s plenty of new content, humour and Digimon but, still the same feeling of these characters we watched on TV.

I highly recommend checking out the Japanese versions already available. There’s also a pretty sweet intro theme as well.

 

Seven new Pokémon revealed in leak for Sun & Moon

A Russian source posted on 4chan images of new Pokémon for the upcoming Sun and Moon titles which were later followed by videos which have come a day before the Pokémon Company was to release new information (July 1).

It has been said that these leaks are legitimate and will feature in the new game. People were unsure at first due to once more not being a fan of designs as they do look a bit goofy.

The information from the Pokémon Company will be coming at 2pm tomorrow (UK). I expect to see these Pokémon and hopefully some information on towns and gyms.

So who has been added to the Pokémon roster?

First up we have Togederamu who is an electric/steel mouse-like Pokémon who appears very similar to Pikachu…again. When performing an electric move in the leak, its spikes appear to stick out from its body. Maybe the grey on its body indicates it has a steel body perhaps?

Togedaramu

Next up we have an electric-fairy type who to be fair could easily be a fighting type. It is Tapu Koko and we were told in the Nintendo Treehouse preview of the game at E3 to remember this name. Maybe the Pokémon has something to do with Hawaiian folklore and could be a legendary? Then again it looks like a bird so there’s a bit of everything going on here. Also a Pokémon with two parts to its name is new.

Tapu Koko

Carrying on with electric types, we have Charjabug who quite rankly looks like something that belongs in a sushi dish. Maybe it’s a witchetty grub or a caterpillar or a bus, who knows. You could argue that Pokémon have lost the plot, but then again every generation has interesting designs.

charjabug

Potentially another bug Pokémon, we have Cutiefly who is believed to be a fairy-type. Maybe not the most creative name or correct but it’s nice to see new fairy-type additions to the series.

cutiefly

Definitely one of the most goofy looking of the bunch, it’s Bruxish. Then again it does have a striking colour design with a larger pallet than most characters. Bruxish has the special ability of dazzling which will be incorporated with the sunny surroundings of Alola and is also a water/psychic type.

bruxish

One of the best looking of these leaks definitely has to be Vikavolt. Judging from the preview, this Pokémon will be another bug/electric type an looks to have sharp beetle-like pincers. I guess it could be another tough bug-type like Pinser or Heracross.

vikavolt

Finally, we have a new dragon type, Drampa, who looks like Flakor the dragon from The NeverEnding Story. I wonder if this dragon will have a connection to ancient mythology and another point, whether this is Drampa’s final evolution or will be anther dragon type without one. Drampa will also be a steel type.

drampa

Civilisation VI: An ever-growing world at your fingertips

This years marks the 25th anniversary of Civilisation and Civilisation VI will hit shelves October 21 for PC and is being made by 2K Games. Yesterday we were treated to an insight into what will make this title different from the rest and what has been improved from previous instalments.

For those of you unfamiliar to Civilisation, it is a turn-based strategy title in which you play as a country and create a civilisation and you can claim victory through many different methods including: culture, domination, scientific, diplomatic and time. It is a game full of historic leaders and world wonders. There are threats from all angles and so it is good to have a great army and sometimes plenty of cities. The game starts thousands of years in the past and can finish up in the future. As you progress, your tools, technologies and people will grow and age throw the generations of development and in the end you will have a futuristic city after first starting in a dusty grassland surrounded by barbarians.

The game will begin with a montage of previous games over the series’ lifetime starting with Civilisation to show how far they’ve come. Cities are not going to feel like they did before as everything you build isn’t restricted to one tile. The whole world has blown up to be of an actual map size. Everything you build will be dispersed onto separate tiles, especially wonders and so gameplay becomes more vulnerable. If you are under attack from god knows who and god knows what, you can no longer protect everything comfortably into one spot and so defence and barracks are important. Also, your workers are no longer under that title, they’re builders now.

civ61

Instead of mist or fog crowding around the areas your settlers/scouts haven’t visited yet, there is an old timey hand drawn map which features sea creatures and dragons that you would find on those tea stand maps. It’s a nice look and very artistic which demonstrates how far the world has progressed.  After setting up another city, roads have been made much easier and are set up through travellers/caravans. This takes away the strenuous time of using workers to build roads which also straps you of income if done incorrectly. When setting up a religious site, as each place has its own tile, it is always good to find a scenic spot or a great wonder to set up as this will increase happiness greatly.

civ6

One of the prettiest parts of this game are the movies of construction and so you can see in real-time how your wonders progress. This can help give you an idea how long it takes for them to be built. Another interesting time feature is the day and night cycle which is an optional add-on where you can have morning, noon, evening and night.

civ62

There are 18 civilisations in this game and so far we know that America (Roosevelt), Egypt (Cleopatra), Japan and China are confirmed. There will be some new civilisations coming to the series, hopefully some African or South American countries! Barbarians will also be a lot harder as they now have tactical strategies to attack you. There are new barbarians including a barbarian horse archer. Oh the joys. AI of other civs will have historical agenda personalities that mix in with who they are. Roosevelt is a warmonger and Cleopatra sides with civs who have a big army. There is obviously still multiplayer with the new addition of being able to finish a game in an hour as well as six-eight hours. The game definitely has a lot more strategy and preparation than previous titles.

teddy

When characters are defeated such as spearmen, there appears to be a quick flash of blood splatter to confirm this which is new and is nice to see more graphical happenings in the game. The game looks beautiful in general with a very bright and colourful map and cleaner and more styled art. There are new characters as well including spies. Not much is known on this yet however.

The game may start off a bit slow but during the middle and end, there are plenty of surprises to be had that will certainly rock the balance of your gameplay. The first part of the game is really about exploration and getting accustomed to the game anyway. In terms of government policies, one of the new exciting features is that you can reconfigure your government’s aims at certain points. Maybe you’re wanting to concentrate on developing your land at one point, next you’re under attack and we need to turn to increasing production of resources and building up an army. Like many civ games there are endless opportunities and this system sees a nice mix of IV and V.

gov

Overall, this game looks to be the best Civilisation title yet and will probably keep expanding to greater heights as the years come. More news will come as it develops. Get ready to plan, be strategic and of course, be the best.

space

One more thing, the space race is in the game!

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – One of the most promising video games to date

Where do I even begin? The Legend of Zelda for the Wii U and NX finally has a name and it is: ‘Breath of the Wild‘. Reggie Fils-Aime started off the show very sombre and took a moment’s silence for YouTuber Christina Grimmie who was murdered last week and was supposed to attend Nintendo at E3.

Reggie then took a sharp right-turn and said how Nintendo is always expressed in different ways at E3, like last year we had Reggie, Miyamoto and Iwata as puppets to mark the announcement of Starfox Zero. This year there was less joking around and Nintendo got straight into the footage of The Legend of Zelda. It’s disappointing that we didn’t see anything from the NX at E3 but there’s no doubt we’ll hear plenty in the coming months. So what is there in the new Zelda game?

climb
Link showing off his climbing skills. You climb on a lot of things.

Well this is a new format for a Zelda game which could change the thinking of gameplay like the original did 30 years ago. Now the open world style is familiar to AAA titles like The Witcher, but this game incorporates a lot of physics and unlike other Zelda titles, let’s you play the game however you want. One of the more interesting aspects was that there are small instructions at the beginning, but besides that users don’t have much guidance which is quite interesting like in the original.

The kingdom is in ruins and the game begins with Link in a technological gene pool-like pod with a Sheikah design on the rocks. One of the interesting additions was the use of actual English when Link is told to open his eyes. It is The Legend of Zelda with a modern twist with technology being one of the main focuses this time. The trailer showed realistic creatures as well including ducks, deer and birds. Link has a Sheikah stone at the beginning which helps guide him after waking up and can also be used to access shrines as it will know that he is the hero who will bring light to the darkness in Hyrule.

shiekah
Link using the Sheikah tablet on a shrine.

One of the things to point out about this game is the graphics. It has a Skyward Sword but with a beautiful hand drawn Japanese animation look. It is just the prettiest game yet. There’s so much new but at the same time with the feel of an old Zelda title. Link can now climb as well on pretty much anything, there’s no waiting and there is still an energy meter that was in Skyward Sword. Whether this is beneficial at all is debatable. Link can also jump as well. There’s so much choice.

The game is so huge and we were really only treated to ‘The Great Plataeu’ which is just one of many areas in the game. Each area will also have different enemies and in the Plataeu we found many Bokoblins, Chu Chu’s ad Keese. This area has many mountains and beautiful meadows. There is also an old citadel which has not been used for a long time and is falling apart. Outside are ‘Guardians’ who were the crab-like creatures chasing Link and firing lasers but here they are no longer working. Although in the trailer it appears that they do come alive and so there may be a timelapse in events for Link, maybe a light/dark world crossover.

paragliding
Using the paraglider to get around the world, will you make your destination?

Now there is all this new stuff, especially how physics plays an important roll with the pushing of boulders, climbing and destroying objects (like setting grass on fire), it’s all just natural. On the other hand there’s still some tradition like Link waking up at the beginning. It shows many similarities to the original and that’s a great thing. Everything is buffed up with Link not requiring the powerglove thus far and you can combine objects and use fire better to blow up stuff.

fire
Using fire sticks to burn grass, this game is very realistic.

There’s plenty of novelties/items like the magnet which picks up metal blocks to use on enemies and breaks, the ice block that link can climb on and use on water and the para-glider which you get after completing missions in the four shrines and receive it at the Shrine of Oman Au (Oman Au is the goddess of Hylian) and there are around 100 shrines. A new feature is an axe which Link can use to chop down trees to collect firewood but also to use to get through different areas like creating a bridge. In the trailer it appears Link has also mastered cooking, because you can set up a campfire and cook food such as apples and steaks. Certain foods when consumed can give extra hearts (like in The Binding of Isaac.) You have your bow and arrow with different arrows which is an age-old favourite however in the new game you can dive an swim for longer and also harvest ore from rocks with traditional or square bombs. Square bombs have better control and you can get ore such as topaz.

chop
Chopping down trees with the woodcutter’s axe.

At the beginning of the game, in the Shrine of Resurrection where you start, you find chests which have old clothes in them that haven’t been worn before. Later on in the game you find more clothing and gearing up will be important due to the fact that the weather in the game changes randomly and you have to be prepared. On top of this it is colder at night as the world is a 24 hour clock and there are cold snowy areas as well. Having the wrong clothes can cause you to lose health. It is very realistic. However, you can also play the game in the nip. What adds even more realism to this is that Link’s breath can be seen in the colder areas.

Weapons are also interesting in this game as there is a weapons reel you can open up and have items such as Bokoblin clubs, the axe and rusty swords which break over time in a real-time mechanic. Link can now also rush at enemies when fighting and perform sweet backflips. There are items scattered around the world and the animation has shaved off elements, making it easier to find stuff in this vast landscape. When battling, Link can have perfect timing as the game slows down, enabling  better hit on enemies. After battling you can take enemies weapons which helps with the real-time breaking.

rock
A huge rock titan enemy which looks like something from The Hobbit.

Let’s have a roundup of what else there is in the game. There’s different areas that cover different elements like mountains, snowy areas, desert areas and volcanic areas. There’s a bit of everything in store. You can ride horses and shoot boars. Hopefully we will be able to ride Epona. There are lots of areas in the Plateau including the Temple of Time and Hopwell Pond. In the snowy areas you can surf on your shield. There’s lots of ways to experiment with the environment by creating puzzles and you can scope for waypoints on the map from a top-down perspective which really helps in getting around this vast world. The map also looks very technological.

bokoblins
Link after pushing a boulder off of a cliff onto some unsuspecting Bokoblins.

Finally, if you buy the game on the Wii U. It is R to move the camera, L to move, start for the menu, select for the tablet and to attack with Y. Just thought that was a fun little bit of information!

horse
Could we see Epona return in this game?

The game is a seamless adventure of a lifetime and is breaking the boundaries of other Zelda titles that we know and love. There is no music constantly playing with really just piano which will definitely create emotions in all of us and I just can’t wait to play and be immersed. That sort of feeling matches this grand landscape that will clock in 100’s of hours of gameplay. There will be no two similar ways to play this game due to its size and will be breathtaking. This will be a Nintendo experience like no other that we haven’t really felt since the beginning of the Wii 10 years ago. Like its name: ‘Breath of the Wild‘ this landscape and all of its elements certainly feel alive. I was worried Nintendo could flop this year’s E3 but I couldn’t be more wrong. Oh yeah, what’s that sword?

sword

Nintendo: New battles, lands and most importantly Pokémon!

Pokémon Sun and Moon are set to hit shelves on November 18 and we have just been told of plenty of info for what’s to come! Here is a list of everything that’s coming!

yungoos

-The names of the games are to do with the earth and how the sun is a source of life and the moon effects all of our lives. The region of Alola will be teaming with life.
-Solgaleo and Lunala will play unique roles within the series.
-Zygarde will appear in the game and in its different forms.
-Alola consists of four islands and one man-made island. The area is like the Galapagos Islands – out of the way and full of new creatures.
– The three starters were made to look cute in battles and creators were careful with colours.

ledyba

-You begin in your bedroom where there is a huge widescreen TV, a Wii U and a Pikachu doll. (However, the game is still in development so this might not be in the final game).
-You go downstairs and your mother has a Meowth.
-Your character has just moved to the Alola Region.
-Humour from the start as your mother says “packing will be the death of me.”
-Your house is a huge wooden built building with a garage.
-There’s lots of greenery and palm trees and you leave from the left into Route 1.
-Some Pokémon returning include – Ledyba, CaterpiePikachu and Pichu.
-Move sets for Popplio: water gun, pound, growl and then disarming voice.
-Litten knows ember and Rowlett knows Leafage.
-New Pokémon: Grubbin (bug hermit creature) Yungoos (normal mongoose) and Pikipek (flying woodpecker).
-Yungoos always gets hugry and is looking for food. During its hunger it gets aggressive.
-Pikipeck can peck 16 times in one second.

landscapes
-When catching a Pokémon there might be a white Pokéball next to it which encourages catching more creatures as it indicates an evolution or pairing.
-When catching a Pokémon, it will be ‘Regsitered’ in the Rotom Pokédex.
-Battles are different with mini screens of the battle set out on the bottom screen.
-Each option has a colour specific.
-Trainers stand behind their Pokémon in the battle.
-The lighting and camera change with the time of day.
-Popplio stands up on its feet like a seal when waiting for a move selection.
-There is an ‘i’ icon which gives you a detailed explanation of a move.
-You can click on the enemy Pokémon after using a status effect and it will tell you how it has effected the Pokémon.
-Pokémon in battle will have shadows.
-When approaching a trainer, a shadow will fall on the top and bottom of the screen to indicate they will battle you.
-The stats for levelling up all have their own colour.

pikipek

-There is a festival in the nearest town which has lots of characters and cut-scenes.
-There are plenty of torches lit in the scene.
-Hala – guy who gives first pokemon
-Hau – friend and has starter pokemon
-You battle Hau in a festival pokemon battle
– Lillie (the professor’s assistant) doesn’t like seeing pokemon get hurt and isnot a trainer
– Culture is integrated into a big battleground at the festival
-‘Tapu Koko’ is important
– Hau is the grandson of Hala and Hala gives you your first Pokémon.

battle

-Nintendo workers took trips to Hawaii to study the area and get a better idea.

-Once you battle a Pokémon once, you learn which moves are effective and which aren’t.

hau

-There’s a new gameplay mode: ‘Battle Royal’.
-It is a communication tool between players in an all new multiplayer mode.
-You can have up to four players and battle one at a time.
-First person who loses all three of their Pokémon means the battle is over.
-Person who has defeated more Pokémon becomes overall winner.
-One on one battle but you can have two more opponents against you.
– This battling will have a strong strategy focus seeing as there can be three on one.
-Matches can be up to an hour log.
-Trainers can customise different outfits.

Battle Royal