Wow.. It’s hard to believe that Pokemon has already been around for 20 years. Many whom have grown with this beloved franchise have fine memories of opening packs of cards hoping for Charizard to peek out at them or attaching Gameboys with link cables to trade and battle with captured Pokemon. And as this year marks Pokemon’s 20th birthday, Nintendo has brought something new to the franchise, Pokken Tournament.
Now we have played as Pokemon in fighting games before inside of Super Smash Bros., but Pokken Tournament brings our Pocket Monsters to a different level of fighting. Pokken Tournament boasts a modest roster of 16 Pokemon to duke out, each with a distinct move set and play style that brings their personality to life! It is definitely an awesome feeling to fly around as Charizard, command flamethrowers to incinerate your enemies and using the skies to take down your opponent!
Although I don’t care for such a limited roster (as the Pokemon franchise boasts over 700 unique characters), Pokken Tournament definitely brings a lot of spirit and fun to a fighting game. Those of us who have played Mortal Kombat X or Street Fighter online know how frustrating it is to try and win when it seems the other side schools you left and right with their extensive knowledge of combos and spammable moves. Pokken doesn’t focus so much on a string of combos, but rather knowing how to dodge and counter different moves that come your way and set up small, easy combos to take down the other side. When playing online, it becomes much more evenly matched, as the smallest move unleashes pain without having to memorize an 8 button complex set up.
Hopefully Nintendo brings some DLC fighters to the game to bolster the ranks, as some of the Pokemon types are unrepresented as playable characters and we all would want to see more of our favorites come into the game. Although they say they have no plans to do so, we can all hope and dream that their plans for the NX will not cause them to turn a blind eye to their fans. Until then, I will continue to use Gengar to cause some mischief and destroy worlds! If you’ve been looking into getting this game — the graphics alone make it worth it. Go check it out today!