Part 20: Cold WaterPart 20: Cold Water
These routes have taunted us for too long, so let's see what they're about.
Water Pokemon. Now there's a surprise.
I wish Professor Rowan would give me a Pokedex. But that old guy looks kind of scary.
My mommy said that Professor Rowan is really kindhearted.
The route quickly splits into three, so we'll go this way.
If it were an underwater Pokemon show, I would have shined.
We only went that way to fight a trainer, so back to the main path.
Well, Pokemon's one thing, but you should take up swimming, too!
Obviously we're a bit ahead in levels since we could've come here much earlier, but getting HMs pretty quickly after another means there's less back and forth.
And since there's some variety in these water routes, I won't have to skip anything! Makes a change...
Surely we're running out of plates.
It's what I live for! Pokemon!
Now the bottom split.
Just a single trainer, but I can't miss a damn thing.
Sure I lost, but watch me! I'll get tougher with water Pokemon.
Oh yeah, another reason the water routes were bad. Since we've seen most Water mons in the dex, there's not much new here.
Listen, I have something important to say to you. Don't drown in your own talent.
Ah crap, this was meant to be a double battle, but when she has long range and is looking right at you, whoops!
There's always dialogue like this in every game, it's weird, stop being weird.
I wasn't ready!
I forgot I had Swift for Water types, now I've got Crunch, hell yeah.
I may look like I'm swimming gracefully, but beneath the surface I'm kicking furiously.
Something I should mention is we could fish up Lumineon right now, but it's only a 5% chance and we can just get it later along with a bunch of other Water types, don't fancy fishing a million times for it.
If you don't know how to fish, you're missing half of life's enjoyment. If you don't know Pokemon... you're missing out on all of it!
Route 221 Day
That's it for the water part, thank god for the awful surfing speed in DP, or this whole area would've been a water route.
Wanna breed a Chingling for some reason? This is the one for you.
Uh, I'll get back to you on that. A bit out of the way, but very worth it as he gives out a Black Belt, an Expert Belt, then a Focus Sash when you show him the exact level Pokemon he's asking. This repeats so infinite Focus Sashes ain't too bad, right?
Ooh, big grass patch, wonder if we'll find anything.
Uh, let's try that again.
We can finally find Sudowoodo and get that version exclusive Bonsly we've been missing. If I hadn't already caught it. Twice. Technically three times if you include bingo... huh, that's an out of context statement. Anyway, if you want to whack stuff, this is a good time to use it, Rock Head Wood Hammer cannot be underestimated. Rock Slide, elemental punches and Double-Edge are also swell options. So long as it's not Sturdy.
To even make Cherrim good, this must be the work of an enemy ace.
Alright, that's nearly everything here, but there is one more thing.
The earliest you can catch Skuntank, so that's another version exclusive off the list.
Another very nice TM, isn't it nice that Bug got some love this gen? Had to happen eventually...
I think keeping up the effort to better yourself is a talent in itself.
We're getting Pal Park ready. I wonder what you can do there?
Pal Park isn't open yet. We're still setting up.
Pal Park, huh? I wonder what kinds of Pokemon you can see there?
Short and simple route, but obviously there's more to that place as we'll see later. Plenty more to explore across the region, so let's bounce between some areas.
Ah, another baby. Well, I only really think of them when they evolve into something from another generation, but this one counts, wonder if we'll get one this update maybe? It's a pain to evolve and only offers Reversal to its evolution. Meh. Best evolve it quick since it'll run out of moves pretty quickly, but Lucario is such a good Pokemon that it's worth it. Otherwise, not much to mention, despite being pretty late to obtain.
Also it'd be dumb to come here just after getting Surf and realising you also need Strength. Aren't HMs fun?
Wasn't that worth it?
Lots of little things to remember. Why do I remember all of them...
If you remember a small pond, like this one by Veilstone City, chances are there's an item on the other side.
Why are those ships there?
Neat. And since we're on the East side, we can get the other Gastrodon on the rainy part of the route. Since they're the same, pick them up whenever you first encounter them depending on the colour, though West has the advantage due to being obtained earlier.
Don't forget this little area.
Glad to finally get this taunting items. Now we can breed for Budew! Yay?
We'll be coming back to this route a couple more times since there's a waterfall and a trainer on top of a cliff. Fun times.
You need a Good Rod if you want to catch good Pokemon.
And that's everything we can get right now, so on to Snowpoint! Though we can't get to it from the bottom entrance. Still, we have both Dawn Stones, those will be useful, and this is the first one you could get in DP, not that it mattered since neither evolutions were in the Sinnoh Dex.
We'll use the middle entrance to head on, since we can finally move these boulders for sweet prizes.
What a comical time to hatch.
Very good time though, but we'll dump it in the box in a moment.
Mt. Coronet is big, but we'll only scratch the surface in this visit.
And Defog. Of course. Thankfully, this is an optional use of it, well they're all optional, but Route 210 is very recommended. And, after this, we won't need Defog for a long time, so we'll get rid of it until then.
There's a million items here, so best grab them!
Just assume to get to an item we need to smash like 5 rocks each.
Skirting around the lake, pretty serene place.
Ooh, increase the turns of Reflect and Light Screen to 8 instead of 5.
Alright, anyone for fishing?
So we haven't met a trainer with a Feebas yet... but they're in the dex, and so is their method of catching them. Route 118 had six Feebas spots out of a possible 436 tiles, so 1/73 chance the tile you're fishing in COULD be Feebas. But hey, you could mix records for it, I guess. It's the same set up here, instead it's FOUR spots across 528 water tiles, so 1/132. That's a fucking yikes. Like before, being in the same group also syncs Feebas tiles, cause you'll need multiple people to find one damn fish.
Oh wow would you look at that, I found one immediately. What are the chances? Well we're done in this underground area, so let's quickly head back and free up a party space.
Mmm, that's the good shit. We'll evolve Feebas later, it requires 220 Beauty like before, which isn't particularly difficult.
Another cave that wasn't in DP...
Hmm, weird, we wouldn't get this item for a long time in DP, so hey, won't complain. But do you feel that chill down your spine? The hair on your arms standing up?
Route 216 Day / Night
I thought so. Man, I love this game.
Hmm, we'll get up there soon. But hey, let's see what's in the grass.
Time for our final team member already. Usually I take a bit of time to figure out when I want to get my team and how it'll balance with everyone else, but this was the easiest pick in the world. Sneasel has good stats as is, but it's a real winner of the split, so it'll be just great! It'll be a little bit before it can evolve, but even being fragile and not having great level up moves, it'll have the tools it needs to survive just fine until then.
Unfortunately our entire team is male, but a +Atk -SpDef nature is very nice and we have a lovely nickname by Jade Rider. 14/20/23/24/21/29 IVs are legit and easily the highest on the team, hell, nearly triple Etrian's.
Need to do the HM shuffle, Etrian will need a space soon.
Ah, that explains the hailstorm. If you want a hail team then this is your best, and only option. It's definitely not a bad choice, though the only good moves it has are coming up pretty soon, Wood Hammer and perfect accuracy Blizzards, along with Ice Shard to cover its low Speed. It is worth going one level over to get Blizzard much earlier, but otherwise it'll evolve soon and give you a little more to work with. If you can avoid its myriad of weaknesses.
Too powerful for its own good. Well we'll just catch two later.
Alright, let's catch these han-
Hey wait, I didn't finish my joke! Alright fine... if you got a friend for this duck, but won't see them again since summer camp is over, then this is a perfectly fine option. You should evolve it again for better stats and the same moves, but this is a better all rounder if you like sticking around, especially with Recover. It'll be the same story then when we encounter the evolution, load it with boltbeam and Tri Attack and you're good to go.
Alright, let's catch these hands! ...see, it's not funny anymore. Well it's probably double as good as its evolution, especially since Double Hit is a pretty great move boosted by Technician. That's the only thing it really does for it, since Fake Out is an egg move. But at least you've got, uh, Aerial Ace? Swift? ...Thief? Well with Nasty Plot you could make that work, but it doesn't give you many options, so get some TMs like Shadow Claw and U-turn, maybe an elemental punch and you should be good to go. It's fine, but not the knock out user of Technician.
I'd rather be asleep in the lodge's bed... I can't take this cold...
So this route is unlike anything we've had before, and the music is amazing, but any deep snow makes it impossible to run and it can make things very slow going. Also we're really not dressed for this weather, having a scarf and jacket doesn't excuse no leggings!
We can see the disparity, but Nack will catch up fine. Also the Hail is helpful and harmful, such is life.
You can make all the preparations in the world, but if it doesn't work, it doesn't work.
Perhaps I should maybe change into a more comfy outfit...
Now that Bug finally has good moves, you start noticing how many things are weak to it.
OK! You and your Pokemon are healthy, chipper, and good to go!
Oh yeah, need to remember some types have useful STAB now, it's only been a decade.
With no friends this could be an alright option, you can relearn the elemental punches and have a variety of TMs, since both sides are low, but usable enough. Otherwise there's standard Ghost stall with Curse, Substitute and Will-O-Wisp, at least you have the option to make it stronger if you're able, since it has a lot of tools for that.
This shivering cutie is able to go two ways depending on your preferences, though only if it's female. It's a quick path to them, since Ice Fang and Crunch are nice to have, but it doesn't have much else. You can evolve it to something pretty spooky right now, or you can wait and make it angry. Either way, it's a good option. We'll catch another one later, but for now, it's on to the next route, surely the thick snow is bad enough, right?
Um, are you maybe on your way to Snowpoint City? That's where I'm going, too. If I use Fly, I can get there instantly, but I'm walking for my training. I have no problem with this. I'm used to the cold because I go barefoot and lightly dressed.
Oh, that was nothing. Really, I'm not cold at all. I'll be going now. Please take care!
The view never clears up. Electabuzz is a real fast mixed attacker and will do just fine if you can't evolve it, with Thunderpunch, Discharge, Brick Break and elemental punches, choose what you're missing. We left Cross Chop behind last gen, but if you don't want to go all twin tails, then it'll do.
So the next few areas could really test if you love this region or not. It's pretty bad, but also kinda cool and different? It's miserable playing through it, but also atmospheric and attributable to the region as a whole?
Gah! Did you spot him in the last image?
...we step ever closer to Seals. One day.
The trees and the various trainers are the only real markers of where you're going, so here's a map so you're not lost. Also nice seeing what this area looks like when it's calm.
Maybe I should've studied at the Trainers' school instead...
CHOFF CHOFF CHOFF CHOFF CHOFF CHOFF
Snow is cool cause it makes everything look pretty, but I'm never a fan of going through it.
Nack is catching up real nicely, mainly helped by everything else using Ice moves.
Mmm-mmmph! Mmm mmmrrmm.
I gave you a map, so you better know where I am!
Who let these small children hide in deep snow at night?
Funnily enough, I'm fucking freezing, my legs especially, can't think why, so let's take solace in this house.
If I still had that hidden move Rock Climb, I'd be able to scale sheer cliffs...
But I'd already given it up for lost, and you found it. It's yours to keep, my friend. Make good use of it. I like your honesty, though. Let me reward you with this.
That Icicle Plate, I found under the snow as well. I'm no expert, but it looks to be of ancient origin. Even as old as the time when Sinnoh came into being...
Hmm, nope, still freezing. But like when I play Go, if I stay out in miserable weather long enough, my hands eventually stop throbbing.
This little piggie has a great evolution choice, but you need to relearn Ancientpower as a Piloswine to go to the next step. We're already at the level of evolution, so get your shaggy pig and think about mammoths. It could be worth waiting a little to get an early Earthquake.
Another house, sanctuary!
"may it serve you well..."
Thanks mysterious pale lady.
Oh hey remember that Eevee we got a million years ago? Well this route is the earliest you can evolve it into Glaceon. It's a good mon, but is it worth the wait? Well maybe it'll be available earlier than this in a later game, like USUM. Hrm.
We'll soon be able to do all the stone evolutions, cause boy is there a fair few.
Also the first time we can grab this.
Let's duck back into the war- NANI?! Huh, must've gone on vacation.
The final cat... fox... thing, it's chilly but that's a good thing, it absolutely puts the hurt in with Ice Beam, or Blizzard if you're feeling risky. The only problem is it doesn't do much aside from that, it learns a lot of physical moves and we can't even get Ice Beam yet. At least it learns 4 special moves, Ice Beam/Blizzard, Water Pulse, Shadow Ball and Signal Beam. So, uh, take your pick. At least it's also somewhat defensive? Oh wait, it's an Ice type, ignore that. Still, it hits like a goddamn truck, and that's all you really need.
Also here's Piloswine, since you can relearn Ancientpower and evolve it immediately, there's not much to say. Make sure to keep Ice Shard, only Swinub learns that for some reason.
We're nearly outta here.
I am a lucky sonovabitch.
Oh yeah it gets that. Crap.
Around these parts, perhaps because of all the snow, there are many folktales of hauntings...
Slooow! Way too slow! Listen, Hikari. See how the rocks are all lumpy here? You can't climb those rocks until you get the Snowpoint Gym Badge. Anyway, I'm off. Team Galactic! I'm coming for you!
Please let me go. Acuity Lakefront was much flatter in DP, since Grunts just blocked the way to the lake until you beat the Gym, which I feel is something the PC wouldn't tolerate by this point. Still, there's not much here since we've caught all the new Pokemon, but there is one thing...
In DP, this was the earliest you could get Medicham, but they were moved to a bit later in this game. It's weird for GF to actually remove an option for a future Gym, but Medicham is super strong, so I don't blame them.
Next time, we'll explore the frozen northern town of Snowpoint.