Let’s Go, Eevee! and Let’s Go, Pikachu! are simplified but fun remakes of a classic

Despite some missteps, fans are likely to enjoy the new Pokémon additions on the Nintendo Switch.

Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee! and Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! on the Nintendo Switch are the first Pokémon games that have been remade from a previous 2D game and put into 3D graphics. They are remakes of Pokémon Yellow, released on Nintendo Gameboy in 1998. The new games bring back some previous features from past games, like the region of Kanto and also introduce some new features for players to experience.

The games use a physical throwing mechanic similar to what we saw in the 2016 hit, Pokémon GO, which sent players outside into the real world. But instead of swiping upwards on a touchscreen, players use the the Joycon or Pokéball Plus Controller. The motion is similar to throwing a baseball.

The game makes a number of other small changes. Berries, which were previously used to increase base stats and friendship, now are used in battle to distract the pokémon, making them easier to catch. Also, your partner Pokémon (Eevee, or Pikachu) cannot evolve throughout your journey, but will learn exclusive moves if leveled high enough. Another new feature is that if you fail to catch the pokémon in a certain amount of time, the pokémon can run away. This can be especially frustrating when you have just come across a rare pokémon  only to have it slip through your fingers. On the other hand, it makes catching them all the more satisfying.

The iconic battle modes while catching wild pokémon changed, too. In these encounters you have fewer effects to use in battle. In Let’s Go, Eevee! and Let’s Go, Pikachu! you only have the options to run, “get ready,” use berry, or bag, which is basically copying Pokémon GO, though some of the feature were in past games. This makes the game a bit lackluster because you don’t get to use pokémon as often in battle, which makes the game more focused on collecting the creatures without having a use for them.

An older, more popular feature that returned was the pokémon follow feature, where you can have one of your party pokémon follow you on your journey. This feature allows you to interact with your pokémon by talking with them. It also lets your pokémon find hidden items in different places that you wouldn’t be able to get. This feature was very popular in Pokémon Yellow and players had always asked whether it would be included in future games. Players enjoyed walking to different places with their favourite pokémon and interacting with them. Sometimes they might also find useful items like potions. The addition of 3D graphics makes how your pokémon walk with you look pretty nice and smooth.

In previous Pokémon titles, Tall Grass was a type of terrain you could walk through and encounter random pokémon in. Now, instead of getting random, unseen encounters, Pokémon actually emerge from the tall grass and wander the environment around them. This feature is interesting because it shows where the random pokémon are, but it takes away the random encounters in the tall grass. This can be disappointing because suddenly coming across a rare or shiny pokémon is exciting. It also takes away the excitement of a random battle encounter.

Now, your pokémon can only be used in trainer battles, weakening their significance in the game. In previous games, pokémon could be used in every wild pokémon encounter in order to weaken the wild pokémon to make them easier to catch. Without this element, the battles are simplified and actually much easier. They barely require any effort.

Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee! and Pikachu! are great games that will bring in players who might have enjoyed Pokémon GO. Though the games are very different from recent  titles in the series, they are actually updated remakes of the oldest generation of Pokemon games. The games may feature a few disappointing changes that reduce the excitement and difficulty of the games, but they are is still a lot of fun to play–especially for players who have been into the series for a long time and will feel nostalgic toward the return of the the Kanto region and other classic elements.

Cover Image: Nintendo

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