by Krista Forsythe / Staff Writer
Initial release date: Nov. 18, 2016
Genre: Role-playing video game
Platform: Nintendo 3DS
In Pokémon’s first installment of the seventh generation, the game has revived old customs while creating some new ones. The games have changed a lot since the mid ’90s, but Pokémon Sun and Moon have probably implemented the most changes out of any other set of games.
The largest change in these games is the introduction of the Island Trials. The region of Alola doesn’t have gym leaders like in the traditional games, and instead has Island Kahunas and totem Pokémon which are stronger than normal versions of themselves. Personally, I think that this was an interesting change. It reminds me of the Pokémon anime when the protagonist Ash Ketchum takes on four island trials in the anime’s second season. Despite there not being gyms, the games still honor that you must defeat the champion to become one.
Another major change is the implementation of Z-moves into the game. After defeating each Island Trial, the protagonist of the game earns a Z-crystal that allows your Pokémon to do a Z-move, which is an extremely overpowered move. You’re only allowed to do one of these moves once per battle, so you must choose when to you it wisely. I don’t really care for Z-moves all too much, since they are far too strong and make everything much more confusing. In the previous generation of the games, we were recently introduced to mega evolutions which were already crazy enough, and I never really cared for those either.
One change that I fond of is the introduction of “Ride Pokémon,” which allow you to surf the waters, push boulders and fly from island to island. This eliminates the use of HMs (Hidden Machines) entirely, which were moves that your team could learn to pass obstacles on your journey. HMs were annoying since you couldn’t have your Pokémon forget those moves if you didn’t want them anymore. Now that there are “Ride Pokémon,” there is no need bother with HMs.
I really liked the games. They brought on many new and exciting features that allowed for a new surprise around every corner. With the intense story line, brand new Pokémon and cheery Hawaiian music and climate, it was near impossible to not enjoy Sun and Moon.