The Let's Play Archive

Pokemon Emerald

by Crosspeice

Part 40: The Battle Arena and Battle Tower

Part 34: The Battle Arena and Battle Tower

Battle Arena

With five Gold Symbols obtained, only two remain! While we used them momentarily in the Trainer Hill, let's meet the Pokemon we'll be using in the Arena!

Fresh from the Banana Wars, we've got DonkeyKong the shiny Slaking, by Dr. Fetus. As we know from the Battle Hall, Slaking is pretty damn amazing, so I expect great things from this big boy. Hyper Beam combos great with his ability and he's got some great coverage to wreck all kinds of mons.

Next up is RNGesus the Shedinja by Explopyro. Up against the right Pokemon, Shedinja are amazing, but there's a few ways to take one down, so hopefully we don't encounter too many of them. When the opponent can't touch us, we can just go to +4 and sweep, so it should be a lot of fun.

Finally, there's Emerl the shiny Registeel by Toyotasomi no Miko. With perfectly even attacking and defensive stats, let's see if a jack of all trades can work well. With a wide movepool with all kinds of coverage, I think we'll be just fine, able to whittle down lots of foes and taking little damage in return.

I welcome you to the BATTLE ARENA! I am your guide to the Set KO Torney! Now, do you wish to take the BATTLE ARENA challenge?

We won't need to think about this for a bit, but you should think about what order you submit your Pokemon.

Right, a Set KO Tourney. You remember this from the Fallarbor Battle Tent, right? If I remember, it kinda sucked.

DonkeyKong is going to have zero trouble in this first set. So much so that, uh, *checks*, yep, we don't use anyone else. Neat.

Right now all the KO Tourney is doing is creating more textboxes to skip over, like the Battle Dome did when its mechanics barely did anything.

However, the combination of Hyper Beam's 90% accuracy and Truant does make the end of the third turn come pretty quickly.

Alright, let's talk about the judging, cause it can be slightly bullshit. At the end of the 3rd turn, both Pokemon are graded in 3 categories. Mind is offensive style, one point for an attack that deals damage is chosen, excluding Fake Out, which deducts one point, or the countering moves and Bide, which award no points. One point is deducted if Protect, Detect or Endure are chosen. The highest scoring Pokemon gains two points in the overall judging.

Skill is accuracy, one point if an attack lands and two deducted if the move misses, unless it was by Protect, Detect, Endure, or Fake Out, in which case it doesn't. It contributes two points overall. Body is the HP remaining at the end of the round compared to where it was at the start of the judging, not the total HP the Pokemon can have. The better ratio wins two points and ties for any of the three categories win one point. If there's an overall point tie, both Pokemon faint.

Overall, if you just attack with accurate moves, then you'll do just fine in this facility as this system really stops stallers in their tracks. So just go all out and attack to gain the most points, though one or even two turns to boost your stats is fine too.

My dear challenger, in recognition of your indefatigable spirit, please accept these Battle Point(s).

Despite this facility being kinda tough since you can get screwed over by the judging at no fault of your own, the BP amount starts off ridiculously low.

Mmm, that's some nice coverage. When there's nothing super effective, then Thunderbolt has the highest BP and has the paralysis chance.

You can get bullshit like this. See, Clamperl used Dive to hit me, but by the end of third turn, Leftovers had healed everything back. No matter what, the battle ends after three turns, even if Pokemon are in the middle of an attack. So because I missed attacks due to Dive, we tied in Mind, lost to Skill and beat it in Body. Causing a tie.

Still, this gives RNGesus its time in the sun, let's go!

Goddammit, why does it have that???

Alright, here's another chance on the next battle. But here's a weird one, when I first sent out DonkeyKong this battle, he started by loafing around. I got very confused and I don't know why that happened, since he had yet to be sent out, or attack. Switching resets Truant regardless, so that was weird.

With Shedinja out, you start seeing mons with weird moves they really shouldn't have, but do. Oh well.

Not that it matters!

Fool, entry hazards only work when I switch in!

Hey look at that RNGesus beat all three Pokemon. We're on a roll!

Ah never mind.

We're in the fourth set now, so we should be thinking about our Pokemon order. See, your Pokemon are sent out in the order you chose them at the start, you can't choose who to send out when a Pokemon faints. This does mean you could face a nasty Pokemon that your third Pokemon takes on no problem, but you have to let your first and second faint before you can get to that point. It sucks.

Still, our team is doing pretty well. I think they're ready for the Frontier Brain. Probably.

It's a shame that was the only Silver Wind boost we got and it was on the last Pokemon.

We now would like you to face our leader, the ARENA TYCOON! A battle with the ARENA TYCOON! Are you prepared? The ARENA TYCOON! Make way for GRETA!

...wait, are you the challenger? Is that right? Hmm... hmhm... I don't know how to say it, but... to put it bluntly, you look pretty weak. Are you sure you're up for me? Hmm... well, all right! We'll take things easy to start with! Okay! Let's see you ignite my passion for battle!

VS Frontier Brain

Arena Tycoon Greta/Arena Captain Kogomi
From guts and great, and kogomi (ostrich fern).

You know, if Heracross had used Endure that turn, I might've been in trouble, since it has a move to hit RNGesus with. But it didn't, so lol, CB Slaking.

This Umbreon is tricky, as they're pretty tanky and it can try for some parafusion if you get unlucky.

But, uh, CB Slaking.

This is cheeky as fuck though, you get this far in this facility and you just lose if you don't have a Shedinja counter. Or you had one, but the previous two Pokemon wore you down so the order of your Pokemon means you've used it already. Definitely have a Pokemon like this in the third slot to make your life easier.

I hope it's not max Speed like mine, or I might lose the Speed tie.

Okay phew. If Brightpowder had procced, I also would've been screwed, as Emerl doesn't have a move that goes through Wonder Guard.

Hmm... it's going to be fun the next time! I'm looking forward to it!

Battle Arena

Only three symbols left! Let's meet the last three mons of the Frontier challenge, since we already know the Battle Tower ones.

We've got Death Drag the shiny Salamence by Eeepies. It's, well, a Salamence with great coverage and Dragon Dance, how exactly could we go wrong? Sure, he's not a fan of Ice moves, but it doesn't take much to rip and tear through the opponents.

Then there's Nana the Granbull by GodofDiscord. We know what Granbull does and she'll hit incredibly hard, STAB Return is nothing to ignore and some emergency healing in RestoChesto is pretty damn nice.

Lastly, there's Bruce the Breloom by sebzilla, with a lot of Speed control, from a really hard hitting Mach Punch, to a Quick Claw, to Stun Spore. Giga Drain won't do too much damage, but it will take down those pesky Water/Ground types and when combined with Leech Seed, that equals a lot of healing. It's an interesting mishmash.

Let's dive right back in. With some hard hitting attacks, we should be able to take down all the various Group 3 Pokemon in our way.

Death Drag has some trouble here and there, but we're making some mad bank! Seriously what is with these numbers.

It's Nana's turn on the sixth set and she's pretty tanky too, able to withstand a rain boosted Hydro Pump, hot damn.

Bruce can do some damage under the right circumstances, so he's definitely a necessary part of the team.

Man I've had enough of these OHKO moves for one lifetime.

I've also had enough of Focus Band.

We're also getting some legendaries coming our way, but I think we can handle them.

Alright this time all of our Pokemon can take down Shedinja, since Bruce has Leech Seed, so we should be fine if Greta has one again.

Sure, I can take down a fellow psuedo-legendary, but fall to a Hypno. The Battle Frontier, everyone.

The 3 turn limit hasn't come up too much, so we're nearly done with this pretty normal battle facility. It's alright, but there's just not much to go over.

I was getting worried waiting for you! I was really looking forward to seeing you again! ... So, are you ready? I won't allow a halfhearted effort! Be ready for a thrashing! Come on, REFEREE! Let's get this started!

VS Frontier Brain

We don't have a CB Slaking, but Death Drag is pretty close, so this Umbreon should still be pretty easy.

It's looking like a close, but clean 2HKO, so let's not get confused!

Are you


Ah shit one of the only Pokemon in here that resists both of Bruce's moves. What are the chances?

Gengar are pretty scary, but I think we'll be alright, just gotta stall it out. In this facility. Hmm.

Ah never mind then, it's Nana's turn!

Please, even if you landed Hypnosis, the chance of you getting fully paraed and dying to Leech Seed was pretty good. Bruce put you in checkmate.

...ah, this might be a problem.

Never mind, the AI will just go for unprotected Focus Punches like a fucking idiot. We win!

Way to kick her while she's down, Nana.

Battle Arena

If we ever battle again, I won't lose! Don't you forget it! Bye-bye!

Only one more Gold Symbol left to go! Man this has taken a while, but we're nearly done! The Battle Tower is our last facility.

Battle Tower

Like in every other facility, we can only face the Frontier Brain in single battles, despite having Double Mode and Multi Mode to play around in.

So the Battle Tower is what you expect, 3v3 battles, no items, Final Destination. It's pure battling with no gimmicks which means there's, uh, nothing to talk about here, but thankfully there will be other topics.

In recognition of your infinite talent, we award you these Battle Point(s).

First set goes like they always do, with our lead just absolutely wrecking. So much sun...

Hello, the name's DILLEN! I've been on the lookout for a POKEMON teacher. And with impeccably good timing, along came you, YUKI! So, there you have it, YUKI! Let me apprentice under you! Oh, yeah! That's a solid reply! Excellent, I might add! So, how about a first piece of advice on the BATTLE TOWER?

OK, A-OK! I'll go show my mettle, like, jam! All right, I'll look to you as my mentor! Adios!

Alright, let's talk about the Apprentice you can create in Emerald (since the Battle Tower was around in RS and has some similarities we'll go over later). Every day your apprentice will ask you certain questions as to what Pokemon they should use, what their battle style should be like and what challenge they should go for and when you've answered all of their questions, they'll head off and a new apprentice will take their place the next day. But your old apprentice will now appear on occasion in the Battle Tower, as a multi-battle partner, or as an opponent in the challenge you selected for them. It's pretty cool, but since I did a the Tower in one go, I didn't fancy coming back each day for a chance of seeing him. Oh well, still neat!

The rest of the Tower consists of our Pokemon wrecking fools and taking names, so let's go over the Battle Frontier! Is it worth your time? Is it fun? Are you a true Pokemon Master for getting all the Gold Symbols. The answer is... eh, maybe? I had fun with this place, sure, but I'm not in a hurry to play this again anytime soon. The only facility I'd bother with is the Battle Factory, surprise, surprise, but due to a glitch, past the eighth set, enemy Pokemon have random IVs, so it could be challenging, or piss easy. Yes this is related to the IV glitch of the Factory copying the Tower streak, but past set 8, the IV matching just breaks and becomes random. I don't get it.

Like, the different gimmicks in this Frontier can be pretty interesting (and also goddamn atrocious), but Gen 4 works a lot better, since seven facilities is just a bit too much. I can understand why this Frontier didn't come back in the remakes, making 7 different facilities in a LOT harder to do in 3D compared to 2D and ORAS only came out 1 year after XY and a lot of the team was being pulled into SM as well, so given enough time and money, I think they could've done it. But they didn't have enough of that. Time, I mean, GF have got more money than sense for the most part. I don't really miss it, but having the copypasted Battle Maison was a bit cheap.

After we take out the Frontier Brain I'll go over each individual facility, but even up against Group 3 Pokemon, just having no gimmicks is so nice and lets this team just go full ham without thinking about anything else.

She should be arriving very shortly. You will be facing the SALON MAIDEN. Are you prepared?

I am the SALON MAIDEN, and I am in charge of running the BATTLE TOWER... I have heard several rumors about you... In all honesty, what I have heard does not seem attractive in any way... The reason I've come to see you... well, there is but one reason... let me see your talent in its entirety...

VS Frontier Brain

Salon Maiden Anabel/Tower Tycoon Lila
From ability and lilas (French for lilac). The Battle Salon is where you choose who to bring with you in Multi Mode.

Alright, good start Pain Train.

Well it's a good thing Shadow Ball didn't get disabled.

Haha, did that crit even matter? Well who cares, we have our last big wall to take down.

Alright, who to send out next?

With the sun up, Bananagher has this in the bag, barring some freak item activation...

Using your Spell Card of Quick Claw just activated my Trap Card: Brightpowder!

Battle Tower

Your FRONTIER PASS, please... your talent shall be recognized.

You have confidence in your POKEMON battling talent, don't you? I urge you to keep battling and keep on winning. I will be waiting for you. Until the next time we meet...

"and swept seven TRAINERS!"

In recognition of your infinite talent, we award you these Battle Point(s).

We've got a full set of Silver Symbols, so before we go for Gold, let's see Scott.

Your FRONTIER PASS! You've collected the full set of silver symbols! That's more than impressive! You are tough, just as I suspected! Normally, I wouldn't do something like this, but this is a special time! I want you to have this. I'm sure you can put it to proper use.

I'm so glad I had the foresight to bring you here!

Five sets down, five sets to go. Getting all the Silver/Gold Symbols will get you some nice berries that are usually obtained by doing something crazy with the battle facility of that game. I think getting all Silver Symbols is a bit tougher than 100 straight wins like in other games, but hey, at least we got one.

Alright, let's talk about the best facility: the Battle Factory. Easily the one you should play more than any other, who gives a shit about all the hard work done by GF programmers, maybe they should've been less shit? Being able to use rental Pokemon is much better than spending forever grinding battle ready Pokemon, since there's no easy way to do that, so another point docked for the other facilities. You'd have to be real incompetent to fuck up a rental facility. And I hope it's still many many years before I have to cover that shitty place.

Next is the Battle Pike and... it's alright. The Battle Pyramid is more interesting and more dynamic than it in every way, though, since the Pike is pretty easy to cheese when you know all the different results. I think having a few more battles and just more overall choice would make this facility more interesting. As it stands, it's alright.

You're finally about to face the 50th TRAINER. From here on, every time you beat seven TRAINERS in a row, your POKEMON will receive a commemorative RIBBON. Good luck!

When you finish the eighth set of either the level 50 or level 100 mode, every time you beat another set, you'll get ribbons on the Pokemon in your party. Any Pokemon in your team will get a ribbon, even if they didn't fight, or have never participated in the Battle Tower before, it's pretty neat and another reason to keep getting streaks in the RS Battle Tower if that's your thing.

Alright... the Battle Palace. What can I say about this fuckin place that I haven't already? It's an interesting idea, if nothing else, but man it is frustrating to play. 2004 AI really isn't the best and you just feel so powerless, since there's no strategy and you're just pressing A over and over with no other input. Maybe some QTEs might've worked, or some other interaction that gave you a chance to do something when your Pokemon did something dumb. Ah, whatever, at least something like this has yet to appear again in any capacity.

Here's what the level 100 ribbon looks like, since we won't be getting it on any of our other Pokemon. I also won't be going over all 27 ribbons you can get in this game, since Explopyro's Contest write-up goes into more detail than I ever will.

You beat over 50 TRAINERS in a row? That's fantastic! I want you to have this!

We'll be seeing Scott quite a bit this update since the Battle Tower has a lot of cool little rewards for various milestones, such as the shield decorations. Unlike the trophies in Gen 4, there's no Bronze Shield for beating 20 trainers in a row. Guess when we'll get the Gold Shield?

We'll use our first three mons for the ninth set, since they deserve a Ribbon too and can easily handle themselves (after a few resets, but that applies to every facility). Alright, the Battle Dome, it's pretty cool and short, otherwise its gimmick would overstay its welcome, since there's a lot of extra fluff you need to go through for battles that are pretty damn easy. Shame they don't do too much more with the whole tournament and huge crowd, but it was still early days. They do more with fans and that in future games, so I'm happy with that.

Alright, onto the tenth set!

Now the Battle Pyramid is pretty good, but man does it wear you out. I mean, I did do it all in one go, so that might be the problem, but it requires a lot of strategy and quick thinking. It's a bit too difficult towards the end, I think, since the wild Pokemon get a bit too nasty and the various trainers you face get really tough, but it was a lot of fun to go through. I think the default darkness is a bit much and maybe the encounter rate could be reduced and maybe really important items shouldn't be a dice roll if you get them or not. But man, just because of how different it is to the others, I think it's the facility you should go for after the Factory.

The fight for the final Symbol!

You've won straight matches to see me... I won't have to hold back against you... It's been too long now... too long since I've been able to battle without thinking about anything... Let's begin, shall we?

VS Frontier Brain

I will give the Battle Palace one more point in its favour: Spenser is the only Frontier Brain to never use RestoChesto, though technically this is RestoLum, so another of Anabel's Pokemon can use that strategy in this fight, but that seems a bit excessive.

We both do a lot of damage, but Raikou can take it a lot easier than Lurker.

Though as always, that strategy only works once!

That crit is gonna make the last Pokemon just a bit tougher, as Regis walled Latios no problem.

You could still be Chesto Berry, so let's hope not.

Ah you're Curse instead. That might be a problem, so we'll try and do as much damage as we can, since you might have Thick Fat.

But since the Poison has made you weak, Cap Falcon can finish the job!

Battle Tower

I have never had a POKEMON battle so enjoyable before... I wish I could battle with you again...

It is finished. You missed most of it, but I spent quite a while doing all of this as you'll see in a moment. For now, let's see Scott.

Your FRONTIER PASS! You've gathered up the full set of gold symbols! That's more than stupendous! You're incredible, just as I suspected! YUKI, you've got to accept this! I think you will be able to appreciate the value of my gift!

Ah, the final berry of the game (not counting the Enigma Berry at 43, but it's an e-Reader berry placeholder for now). It's not very good, but both those berries are just for completion's sake. You can grow them to get an unlimited number so you don't have to do something like this again.

But as you might have noticed when showing off all the Symbols, we got another Trainer Card star! Unlike Gen 4's Battle Frontier where you got absolutely nothing for all the Colour Prints, you actually get one more step towards full completion. Also note the time and the first Hall of Fame Debut. That's right, it took me nearly THIRTY HOURS to do all of the postgame stuff up to this point and we're still not done!

That's right, we're going back into the Battle Tower to get a 100 battle streak. We were at 70 from beating Anabel, so we just need to do four more streaks and then two additional battles after that. Easy. I did this offscreen, cause goddamn was it a chore.

There we go, as easy as that... Oh yeah, the Battle Arena! It's also alright, it only being three turns long per matchup does speed things along and the judging is interesting, if nothing else. Still, it's just a bit of extra fluff to stop it from being the Battle Tower and it really doesn't matter much if you just attack every turn and don't miss. So yeah, it's middling, along with the Dome, since it's not as boring as the Tower or the Pike, but not as interesting as the Factory or the Pyramid. The Palace is dead last of course, fuck that place.

You beat over 100 TRAINERS in a row? That's ridiculously spectacular! You've got to have this!

There we go. We're done with the Battle Frontier. What a crazy place. Thank you to everyone who submitted, your Pokemon were an absolute blast to use, like always. Such a cool variety in strategies and mons that I think worked pretty well!

Overall, I think the Battle Frontier is nice, but not something I really miss. I imagine it's a LOT of work making something like this and I can understand why they went with relatively simple battle facilities from Gen 5 on. Still, I think battle facilities as GF make them are flawed regardless, so I hope they change it up eventually. And not like the Battle Agency, fucking hell. The PWT and the Black Tower/White Treehollow are good, but not exactly perfect, so who knows what they come up with next. I'd be pretty happy if another Battle Frontier popped up, but I hope it was worth the huge amount of man hours necessary since hardly anyone will ever play it. You monsters.

Since we're absolutely overflowing with BP, let's spend it on cool shit and complete our Secret Base! Can you see a theme in the dolls I placed? But now, there's only one thing left to do in the game and that's to complete the Hoenn Dex, so let's go over the last six Pokemon we can't obtain in any other way aside from trading.

Like before, I'll just be catching them all in one go at the end of the LP instead of maybe catching them in more thematic locations during the postgame. Ah well, who cares?

Couldn't we have ended the LP without encountering ANOTHER physical Water type? With the double SpAtk from the DeepSeaTooth, Huntail just isn't very impressive compared to Clamperl, especially since it doesn't learn a single physical move through level up. Seems a little bit suspect. Still, it works alright as a special attacker, but then what's Gorebyss for? So you should use its Attack... except the only physical moves it gets are the standard Normal ones and Rock Tomb! That's seriously it. So mixed set it is, with Return, Hydro Pump, Crunch and Ice Beam. Seriously, I don't know what they were thinking with this mon. At least it keeps Clamperl's excellent Defense, but damn, Shell Smash was a real blessing for this poor fish.

While Clamperl prefers the DeepSeaTooth to the DeepSeaScale, Gorebyss at least gets the moves to make use of its stats, even if Attack is pretty much useless for it, as we just saw. However, unless you want to use some cool Psychic moves, there's not a huge reason to use Gorebyss over Clamperl, aside from getting around Species Clause? At least it can dish out some real damage, but it's too slow to really sweep, so this entire line needs Shell Smash then, huh? It even gets Shadow Ball, just to screw over Huntail even more, it's so baffling. The fact these are the last two normal Pokemon I'm doing in the LP just shows how much love they get overall, such an obscure line that needed a lot of buffs to even think about.

With that... we're nearly done with the Hoenn Dex! There's just one last Pokemon left to obtain. Now, what are we gonna do about that? Find out in the final update!