Pokémon Shield – Nintendo Switch

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A new generation of Pokémon is coming to the Nintendo Switch system. Become a Pokémon Trainer and embark on a new journey in the new Galar region Choose from one of three new partner Pokémon: Grookey, Scorbunny, or Sobble. In this all new adventure, you'll encounter new and familiar Pokémon as...

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Pokemon Sword/Shield are without a doubt the most disappointing Pokemon games in the series. While they manage to take a few steps forward to do some things right, the games have removed so much content that it's hard to suggest them to anyone, especially with a $60 price tag.Some positives:+ The Wild Area, while not perfect, is a step in the right direction. It's a big open area where you can catch Pokemon and freely rotate the camera. The graphics and performance are worse here than in other parts of the game, but I like the concept.+ Mints! You can use mints to change the Nature on your Pokemon, which is very handy.+ The graphics are very nice in some areas. While these aren't the best looking Switch games, there are some moments that I really appreciate playing a Pokemon game in HD.The negatives:- You have probably heard about this by now, but 60% of all Pokemon have been removed from the game. If you were hoping to import your favorite Pokemon, or go trade for your favorites, you probably can't. This is a HUGE disappointment.- The Global Trade System (GTS) has inexplicably been REMOVED from the games. You now trade with people like in the Let's Go games, which is a huge step backwards. During my journey I usually like to use the GTS to obtain Pokemon not in my version, or maybe another starter. It is now close to impossible to trade for what you want unless you dig through online forums and websites to try and find someone to trade with you. It's terrible.- The main story is the shortest it's ever been. I completed the main story in 18.5 hours and I was not rushing. It normally takes me close to 30 hours to finish the main story in a Pokemon game, so this was extremely disappointing.- There is almost ZERO post-game content. This has been getting worse and worse with each new Pokemon game, and it is by far the worst in Pokemon Sword and Shield. There is a mini story that takes 1-2 hours after you beat the game. After that, all you have are raids and the Battle Tower (which is a massive step down from the beloved Battle Frontier). There are no new areas to explore in the post-game, and very few legendaries to catch. Again, this is another massive disappointment.- Mega Evolutions have been abandoned. The new battle technique is called "Dyanmax" where you make your Pokemon big for 3 turns. It doesn't feel satisfying and you can't use it very often. Mega Evolutions offered new looks for your Pokemon and felt like a better developed concept. The Dynamax concept feels rushed and not very fun to use.- The game is very scripted and linear. It feels like every 10 minutes I'm getting interrupted by my friendly rival Hop to tell me where to go or what to do. I just want to play the game. I just want to explore. This is a RPG after all. The problem is that the routes in the game are the shortest they've ever been, and everything is very linear and straightforward. There is no challenge and no risk. The game tells you where to go and what to do, and then your friendly rival Hop always interrupts you every 10 minutes to tell you how great you are and then heals your Pokemon. It's very hand-holding.- The game is $60. Previous Pokemon games on the handheld systems were $40. There is nothing here to justify the $20 increase in price. They actually removed so much content from these games, made a shorter main story, included very little in the post-game, and made the price more expensive than any other mainline Pokemon game.Overall, I have to say that Pokemon Sword and Shield are easily the most disappointing games in the series. They do some things right that I appreciate, but they have just removed so much content. 60% of all Pokemon are gone. The Global Trade System was removed for no reason. The story and post-game are lacking. It's by far the most disappointing Pokemon game I've played, and at $60, I really can't recommend these games.
Removed more than half the Pokedex, reused 3DS models, lazy graphics and animations relative to other Switch games, same formula, removal of a number of key competitive moves, and removal of other past features. You're better off getting your kid an older Pokemon game as this tends to only get decent reviews because it is in the Pokemon franchise.
It's nothing special. It's OK. Fun for a little while, if a little dull. It's not the awful monstrosity that everyone is making it out to be but it's not a masterpiece by any stretch. I would would say it just barely manages to be mediocre. If half stars were a thing on here I would give it 2.5 stars. Probably shouldn't cost the full $60. This is more of a $45 game. I'd say it earns a firm last place in a ranking of all 8 generations. But hey, it's a Pokemon game. It's missable, but if you don't have anything better to do its probably worth a look.

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