The Pokémon Let’s Go! lineup of games coming to the Switch has always had fans divided. This time around, it seems Nintendo is trying to coax in new players rather than trying to keep their loyal, existing fans. While no one can blame them, it can be weird – as a long-time Pokémon fan – to see such a change in direction from their previous titles.
[perfectpullquote align=”left” bordertop=”false” cite=”Junichi Masuda” link=”https://www.polygon.com/2018/10/15/17965206/pokemon-lets-go-co-op-impressions-preview” color=”#9c1cb2″ class=”” size=”16″] There’s no getting around it . . . [Pokémon Let’s Go!] is going to be an easier experience if you are playing with another person cooperatively. [/perfectpullquote]
Following its announcement, fans were spoon-fed information by Nintendo through newsgroups. Features were touched on carefully, such as the co-op functionality and the ability to transfer gen 1 Pokémon from their mobile game, Pokémon GO. They even made it mandatory that players MUST have a Pokémon that is able to go against what the Gym leaders have. It felt like it was going to be watered down for completely unfamiliar players.
Now, further information was released via Polygon speaking to Junichi Masuda, the director of Pokémon Let’s Go!.
[perfectpullquote align=”right” bordertop=”false” cite=”Junichi Masuda” link=”https://www.polygon.com/2018/10/15/17965206/pokemon-lets-go-co-op-impressions-preview” color=”#9c1cb2″ class=”” size=”16″]A good portion of the more difficult stuff is in the post-game. There’s ways to strengthen your Pokémon, and the reason you wanna do that is, you take on these master trainers, these really powerful trainers that you encounter after the main story.[/perfectpullquote]
The director admitted that playing co-op does change its difficulty and they used “support play” to help young players get around barriers. This statement could be a bit off-putting to seasoned players who grew up with other entries where if you lost, you train your Pokémon until you beat your opponent. There isn’t much of a chance to get to a “barrier” that the player can’t overcome without doing some form of grinding. Then again, he also admitted they are trying to appeal to the unfamiliar audience.
Though, a shimmer of light did poke its way through. Masuda did mention that there are “Master Trainers” who are assumingly more difficult than the average trainers you run into during the main game. This means if you want a real challenge, you’ll have to complete the story first.
Pokémon Let’s Go! will be hitting store shelves on November 16.