Review: POKKEN TOURNAMENT Is Great But Not Without Issue

Pokken Tournament has probably been one of the most anticipated games to come out this year. There are many Pokemon fans who for years have wanted a game with this gameplay. You actually control every move of your Pokemon and are not just telling it what attack to use. Not to mention, there’s a decent chance fighting-game enthusiasts will at the least be tempted to pick it up. This means there could be more people sucked into the world of Pokemon!

The game looks great, albeit a little weird to see the textures on some of the Pokemon like Gengar. It’s probably just because we’ve never seen that high quality render of one before. Each Pokemon has their own unique move set and play style which is key in a game like this. Even Pikachu and Pikachu Libre are very different. You have four play styles: Standard, Speed, Power, and Technique. They each have their own strengths and weaknesses so you’ll just have to mess around with each Pokemon to find the right one for you.

The Pokemon still get to level up and gain Stat Points which you can distribute among four items to better customize the fit. This is a great mechanic in my opinion because then each battle can be different. Also, at the start of each fight you choose a pair of Support Pokemon that you choose between at the start of each round. These support monsters have various effects to damage, buff, weaken, or a combination to help you possibly turn the tides.

As great as this game is, there are problems. The first is probably the most obvious: the selection of Pokemon. While it’s great that Charizard, Blaziken, and Machamp are in this game, some very obvious choices are left out like freaking Hitmonchan and Hitmonlee! Of course everyone has their own opinions on which Pokemon should and shouldn’t be in there (and I hope they do introduce DLC packs because that would be a very smart move Nintendo), I think we can all agree that Chandelure has no business in this game. He just doesn’t. The second problem with Pokken is probably balance problems. Now, they’re hopefully working on a patch to fix this but in my two weeks of playing this game I can’t help but feel Pikachu Libre and Shadow Mewtwo are over powered. My final big problem with Pokken Tournament is the implementation of Local Battle. Player 1 gets access to their custom built Pokemon but Player 2 can’t use their custom monsters even if the accounts are on the same console. Player 2 is stuck using Player 1’s Pokemon or both players are stuck not using the custom builds.

This is a game that has problems but the positives outweigh the negatives here. Hopefully, we’ll start hearing about DLC Pokemon in the coming months and fans will get to use their favorites. Nintendo needs to continue letting 3rd parties use their IPs for games. Such cooperation has given gamers two fantastic games: Hyrule Warriors and Pokken Tournament.

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