The Let's Play Archive

Pokemon Shield

by Falconier111

Part 37: I Really Made It

Update 38: I Really Made It

This update will be a lot shorter than most, because it was either split today’s update into two parts or post the longest update in this thread so far. Like, so long. Depending on how things go, you’ll probably see the second part/follow up update today or tomorrow.

Wyndon - Pokémon Sword and Shield OST
This one is another banger. I know you folks don’t listen to these because nobody noticed the gift I left for you in the Raihan fight, but I highly recommend you at least listen to the first few seconds.

Well, that Route was bloody miserable.

Oh, sure, but look at this place!

You get it, don’t you, mate? After all, I’m about to become the new Champion of the Galar region!

Oh, I think it’s a bit early to declare your victory yet.

That’s it! No more naysaying for you! I’m headed straight for Wyndon Stadium! Don’t waste too much time, Gloria. You should head there yourself!

And we are released to explore the greatest city in Galar. Well, what we can. It’s a pretty substantial city, but the game heavily implies there’s a lot more to it then we can see or visit . According to the game, Rose heavily rebuilt the city from a historic but more rundown state, but man, it’s London, I'm not toeing that line. How rich do you have to be to completely rebuild the city of London? Our first stop, as it always should be, is the Pokémon Center, which has something interesting for us…

Vitamins don’t just increase the stats of Pokémon, they modify how quickly those stats increase using a mechanic called effort values – essentially, beat Pokémon in combat and your Pokémon’s stats will increase slightly faster, though there’s a billion different factors and quirks in the system that I neither understand nor care to find out about. Vitamins here boost EVs for… Well, not for free, since they are hideously expensive, but they make stat gain a lot easier if used correctly.

I will not be using them either correctly or incorrectly.

Like other big cities, Wyndon has its own boutique, but holy is this stuff expensive. Also for some reason very punk. You see that number up there? By the time I was done…

… I’d eaten up almost half of it.

This town is truly enormous, but its size is a little deceptive; it has more big open spaces than any city before it, but there isn’t much interesting to find compared to its predecessors. We do have this guy hiding in one of the townhouses, though…

Before this fight, I genuinely didn’t think it was possible to fight one. I just thought they were flavor, but no. Oh well, they put up a pretty impressive flight for Pokémon substantially weaker than my team, but I beat them down regardless. As a reward, he gives us an item that lets us modify the type of a Pokémon I will probably never use. Thanks, buddy!

By the way, before we continue our journey, this is the team I will be taking into the championship matches (healed up, of course). I THINK they have strong enough stats and type coverages to take me through to the end, especially factoring in level ups I get during the competition. But no plan survives contact with the enemy.

Tournament Lobby (Locker Room) - Pokémon Sword and Shield OST

Look at that – our very last encounter with everyone’s favorite item dispensary.

I can tell you’re following your dreams! And that means… You guessed it! I’ve got a Pokéball for you!

He gives us a Dream Ball, which makes catching Pokémon with the Sleep status effect easier. So, probably not anything I'm going to use outside of a few very specific instances. But hey! He gave us the capstone in a long line of free stuff. Thank you, man .

I made it through the Gym Challenge. There might be for remainin’ in the Semifinals… But I’m the one who’s gonna win through and battle the Champion.

Oh? Is that certainty I hear?

You’d best believe it .

Turns out I was the first to register for the Champion Cup, which means I have a bye while you two work each other over. In other words, I’m already number one. It’s pretty much in the bag that I’ll win this thing!

MC Grunt : We’ve been watching over your performance in the Gym Challenge. This is just a formality, of course, but I’ll need to check your Gym Badges, if you don’t mind.

I’m all sorted and ready to battle you on the biggest stage of them all! Come on, Gloria. We should head to the locker room!

Tannoy: The Semifinals will be starting soon! Please head to the stadium pitch when you are ready.

And with that, we’ve arrived at the finals. In older games, instead of the relatively brutal but still uncomplicated Route 10, to make your way to the Elite Four, you had to go through Victory Road. Though different Generations experimented with the concept, they were all long caves scattered with puzzles and powerful Trainers, one final endurance match before the mother of all endurance matches later on. Likewise, while there were also settlements of some kind outside of the entrance, they were always tiny (usually a Pokémon Center, a Pokémart, and maybe a couple other buildings) instead of metropoli. Even the Badges work slightly differently; while you still needed to present eight Badges, you needed to present them to a guard or police officer, and they were individual pins kept in a carrying case instead of different pieces of the same emblem. To me, this whole area feels just slightly unreal, not in a bad way, but a bit like walking through your room in a dream where you know your room isn’t arranged like that but it feels right anyway.

There wasn’t anything like the Semifinals in the older games, either. In fact, rivals worked completely differently. Instead of being developed characters with their own arcs and agency, there were mostly just reflections of the main character. The very first rival, known to history as Blue (you named him at the start of the game, which meant you had a lot of people (including me) going up against DOUCHE for the rest of the game), was a bully who taunted you until you kicked the shit out of him. His heirs sometimes had story arcs of their own, but they didn’t stand out much. Apparently they started developing into proper characters found Gen 5, but they weren’t active participants in the story when my interest in Pokémon peaked.

Now, though… Now they participate in the Semifinals.