Thursday, May 23, 2024

Pokemon Games Need an In-Game Day-Night System.

( I’ve played the Pokemon games since Pokemon Red. At that time, the monster-catching element was a new experience for someone who had only played two JRPGs at that point. Then Pokemon Gold/Silver dropped and it introduced something that I’ve always wanted the series to get right.

Pokemon Games Need an In-Game Day-Night System.

By the time Gold/Silver released in 1999, I had played more JRPGs including several such as Breath of Fire II, Robotrek, Legend of River King, and Dragon Quest V which introduced the mechanic in question. While playing BoF2, I first saw a day and night cycle in an RPG. Prior to that, I’d only seen it in Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Super Mario 64.

Pokemon Day and Night

When the day and night cycle made itself known in Pokemon Gold, I was blown away. This was on the Gameboy Color, so you saw the few colors the GBC allowed then you saw the Johto region at night! Not only that but certain Pokemon came out at certain times while others might pop up more in the daytime or at night.

It was a big jump for GameFreak and I was impressed at 14. With each game, the studio improve upon different game world elements, combat balancing, introduced new elements and so on. The main story changed to a degree but has always been around a powerful, influential trainer harnessing some next-level power. You always have the reoccurring gang the player spanks as well.

There’s quite a bit that remains the same in Pokemon and the day-night cycle is one of them. Now, it’s just kind of there and it serves its purpose for what GameFreak needs as far the ecosystem. My thing is that each Pokemon game feels like one very eventful summer where your trainer is another supernova.

Think about it, your trainer—probably 10-years-old, definitely no older than 13—heads into a world of dangerous monsters, eccentric adults, a roving gang, and experienced trainers. Only, those experienced trainers are actually no match for you even with their years or experience.

The Long Summer

Picture that: you just got your first Pokemon what has to be a few weeks ago in-game and you’re clapping up trainers who have been at this for years. Some have badges, they’ve just hit a wall or something but they have enough experience to beat someone who just became a trainer and don’t even have a badge.

At least they should.

That’s not reality. You trample these trainers in record time. The solution is simple: have an in-game clock where the days change every hour or whatever but just have real time for promotions and events. I’d just like for these adventures in each Pokemon game to not feel like a brief career between when you get your first monster to when you defeat the Elite Four.

I mean, your opponents could get back in battle form after a couple of real-world hours, they might be more powerful the next day or even later that day. Different city gyms and the region HQ could have in-game events that occur on certain “days”—it’s something that pokeclone Monster Rancher managed to do sans the overworld/open-world travel. I’ll admit, it’s a relatively minor gripe and the franchise has worked and sold for years without changing this aspect much but I believe a lot more could always be done with just the day-night cycle to stretch out the journey.

What do you think? Should the Pokemon games do more with this mechanic? What are some changes you’d like to see made to the franchise?

Staff Writer; M. Swift

This talented writer is also a podcast host, and comic book fan who loves all things old school. One may also find him on Twitter at; metalswift.

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