Sun Nuzlocke – Chapter 4 – Totem Trouble

< Chapter 3

Can emos be blond?

Not long after leaving Paniola ranch behind I ran into Hau who was annoying a new character named Gladion. I’m glad it’s not just me that finds Hau’s optimism irritating, even if the other person is a fictional character. Gladion looks like that kid that desperately wants to be emo and got his mum to take him to Hot Topic one time but he’s not allowed to dye his hair yet. He will wear that Hot Topic outfit every day for the rest of his life though, dammit. He’s also got a bit of a chip on his shoulder about… Something… I think it’s about being kind of a contractor henchman for Team Skull, but not a real henchman. Two Team Skull members came up after we fought to tease him about that AND ABOUT BEING HOMELESS?! Damn Team Skull, what the hell? That was harsh, and kind of brave considering he has a freaky-ass dog-fish-lizard Pokémon that is far better than their Ratattas.

I messed up…

After Gladion was done being dramatic and mysterious I got to move on and it wasn’t long until I was in the next area and ready to start the next trial. This was the one trial I could actually remember from my previous, generic playthrough I think because I had struggled a bit with it and been surprised by it. I knew the Totem was a water spider thing but unfortunately I couldn’t remember what level it was (or called), but my team were all about level 20 and I felt confident with that. I also had a pretty heavy electric/bird team so I went in without feeling I had to do too much grinding and was feeling pretty cocky about it overall. I was in for a shock. The Totem was an Araquanid, a creepy spider with a bubble on it’s head. I sent out Chops the Flaaffy to shock it into oblivion but it hit her with Bubble, not normally a threatening move, but in this situation it was. I had to switch once it summoned a Dewpider to help it. Pom pom the Oricorio was sent out but the same thing happened, and with the Dewpider in the mix as well it just wasn’t happening. Same issue with Peeko the Wingull. Then I thought it was time for the big guns and sent out my beloved Squidward the Inkay to deal with them. Squidward is an amazing Pokémon with the Contrary feat, so if you try to lower his stats they just get higher, and some really good moves that have been making a lot of fights very easy. I used Reflect because at this point I was clucthinc at straws hoping maybe Bubble was a physical move (it’s not) and maybe it could at least lower the damage being done but it didn’t help. Then Araquanid used Leech Life… Which one-shot Squidward. I was devastated. I thought Squidward was going to go all the way to the elite 4 with me, he didn’t even get to evolve yet. I had to take a minute to process his death before I could continue the fight. I was also really annoyed at myself because I had completely forgotten that bug type is super effective against psychic type because you know, Urie Geller can’t bend spoons if a fly lands on him I guess.

RIP to my favourite…

At this point I was getting genuinely worried that this would be the end of my challenge, if no one could stand up to Araquanid more were going to start dying, but I had one last hope (and second favourite) : Rudy the Brionne, my starter. I sent him out and had him just use Work Up to raise his Attack and Special Attack for 6 turns so he was beefed up then struck with Icy Wind and BAM the Araquanid was dead. I felt no joy at his defeat though, there was just a hole in my team that no totem defeat, or many new Pokemon could fill…

Magikrap to Magikal

Begrudgingly, I set about catching a Pokemon in the trial area. This could potentially be the Pokemon to replace Squidward so there was a lot riding on it, I didn’t really have anything in the Box that I felt could match him. A ripple in the water, a jerk on the fishing rod and I reeled in my new team mate… Magikarp.

I was disappointed at first, they take so long to level BUT then I realised that it was a level 21, just one level away from evolution and that was a game changer! Neville the Magikarp was added to the party and put under a gruelling training regime until it evolved into a Gyarados. Now we’re talking. In my previous Nuzlocke I managed to get a Gyarados but it was defeated almost instantly so I vowed to be a better trainer for Neville.

Mandatory Battle Royal

Our next stop was the battle royal stadium where you fight three people with the first Pokemon in your party. I walked in and triggered a cutscene with Hau, Gladion and ‘The Masked Royal’/The Professor in a wresting mask (whatever he’s into I guess, no judgment) and they all decided to battle then and there with me and the Pokemon at the front of the team. Realising that Chops the Flaaffy was the Pokemon at the front of my party and also injured, I desperately tried to claw my way out of the building but the cutscene was in full flow and poor Chops was thrown out the safety of her pokeball to fight a Rockruff, Type: Null, and Torracat. I was very scared. I like Chops and the wound from losing Squidward was still sore, I couldn’t lose Chops too. I tried to be as strategic as possible and used thunder wave on Torracat in the first round. Magically, none of the other Pokemon attacked Chops in that round, which was a huge relief. Round 2 I used thunder wave again on Rockruff as Type: Null was burned but Chops took a hit from Torracat that nearly wiped her out. With just 5 hit points left I resigned myself to Chops’s untimely demise, but she was going to go out swinging! She used thundershock on the Rockruff and… it was defeated, therefore ending the battle! I didn’t realise just defeating one would end it or I would have been more aggressive, I thought you had to be the last one standing. Phew. I ran out of there ASAP knowing that I would never return while on this challenge. I do think that in a normal game it’s a fun format though.

Next stop on the journey is the volcano park for a fiery battle!

Sun Nuzlocke – Chapter 3 – Food for thought

< Chapter 2

Anti-Climactic Rivalry

You might remember back in Chapter 1 I said how I was doing this challenge to relieve some boredom from my sofa-bound, injured boyfriend and that after each Kahuna battle we were going to battle each other. Well… That’s not worked out so much. After a week of me looming over his shoulder asking “have you beat the Kahuna yet?” in the most nonchalant way I could muster while desperately wanting to continue my own game, he finally gave me the go ahead to continue and he would ‘catch me up’. This may or may not happen but I’m going to continue the challenge myself either way. A downside to having a non-gamer boyfriend is that when he does play stuff with me he gets really into it for one or two nights then never wants to play again, which leads to a lot of frustration for my inner achievement hunter.

Ride Pokemon appreciation

After the first Kahuna I was given my very own Tauros to ride and rock smash my way through obstacles. The way this game dealt with HMs is THE BEST, It’s one of my favourite things about it. I hate having to sacrifice one of my party to HM servitude but in Alola you are given a Ride Pokemon to do what would normally be an HM move. You also get some funky riding gear that is… a look, but safety first I guess. There’s a Tauros to smash rocks, Stoutland to sniff out hidden objects, a Charizard for fly, Lapras to surf, and more.

Look what you made me do

I retraced my steps smashing through all the rocks I could find and got to a new area ‘Ten Carat Hill’ where I got a Mawile called Nancy, a Pokemon I don’t usually use but I was very curious so added her to the party straight away. Then there was the ‘Farthest Hollow’ where I COULD have got a Roggenrola, which would have been really cool, but Taylor the Ekans had other plans and 1 shot it. Taylor had become my ‘catcher’ Pokemon, what with her ability to paralyse and not hit too hard, but I guess she wanted to prove me wrong and what with this being the second time she had knocked out a potential team mate I retired her from that role with a stern warning.

Arriving in Akala

Smashable rocks exhausted I headed to the beach and surfed a Mantine to the next island, Akala. Little fact here : The only reason I got Ultra Sun and not regular Sun is because of the Mantine surfing, it’s a fun mini game and I’ve always liked surfing/skating mini games. Once we got to Akala I was greeted by the Kahuna Olivia who is VERY different to Melemele’s Hala. I have a bit of a girl crush on her, not going to lie.

Olivia - Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia
Look at this queen

Lillie wanted to go off to a posh hotel for plot reasons, you have to follow her but once you’re there she just goes “yep… this is the hotel all right!” Ok??? Temporarily unburdened by Nintendo’s albino plot device I ran to the nearest patch of grass to get my new Pokemon… An Eevee! Eevees are adorable and I was very happy. I’d found the TM False Swipe and taught it to Nancy (the new catcher of the team) so it was an easy catch and Smoothie the Eevee was mine! (It was just what I was eating at the time, I don’t know, coming up with all these names is hard). I boxed her temporarily as I wanted to plan what I wanted her to evolve into carefully. There might be a particular type that isn’t very common in Alola or my team might be severely lacking something when I get to the next trials.

The realities of food in the Pokemon world

Next stop was the Paniola Ranch so I could expect a farm-like addition to the team, though isn’t that basically just stealing Pokemon from the ranch? Seems sketchy. Anyway, after some interaction with a farmer and his Miltank I had the disturbing realisation that everyone in the Pokemon world drinks milk from Miltanks. I was then informed by my friend that there are only male Tauros and female Miltank and they can breed with each other so… Miltank provides the humans with milk and the Tauros provides them with… Steak??? That must be why they don’t evolve either, they’re primarily a food source. I guess that’s obvious but I had never thought about it and for a second it took me out of the magical world where humans lived on berries. We looked into it a bit more and apparently Slowpoke tails are a snack you suck on and slowly chew, Farfetch’d were hunted to near extinction because they taste good when cooked with their leek and Basculin is ‘remarkably tasty’. So there’s some light horror for y’all.

Do People Eat Pokemon? 13 Examples From The Anime Of Eating Pokemon (Or  Real Animals) - GameSpot

Any reserves I had about stealing Pokemon from a ranch were now gone (not that I really had any before) and I walked into some nearby grass to see which Pokemon I could save from the food industry and found a Mareep. I honestly did not realise until I started typing this despite all that ‘horrific realisation’ I then went totally absentmindedly went on to name the Mareep ‘Chops’ so… Yeah. Chops was saved from becoming its’ own name sake and we got out of there. Food talks aside, I am glad I got a Mareep as I think Ampharos can be a good Pokemon.

Now that I need to have a think about my Eevee, which is your favourite Eevee evolution? Or which is more useful? I’m also running out of name ideas, drop some ideas in the comments! Any comment on the food situation? What would a Pikachu taste like?

Sun Nuzlocke – Chapter 2 – Lots of firsts

< Chapter 1

Route 2

After my embarrassing performance in on Route 1 I was hoping for a better time on Route 2. A new route means new Pokémon so I set off optimistically. At the first patch of grass I came to, a man told me how when you can see rustling in the grass that means a Pokémon will run up and attack you, so rather than explore the route a bit more and select my grassy patch tactfully my dumb ass stepped right on into that first one, a shape sped towards me and it turned out to be an Ekans. I’ve never been a big Ekans fan but I’ll take it. Taylor joined the team and I sulked about untapped grassy potential a bit until I got to Sandy Cove. I thought it looked like a good place to come back to when I can fish or surf for a water type just as a Zubat threw itself at me. Has anyone ever not had a Zubat in a Nuzlocke? (Genuine question) My team was full at this point though so it went straight to the PC.

My next stop was the cemetery where I got a Driftloon, which I’ve never used before and their Pokédex entry is uh… intense.

I’m sure there are any number of cool characters that steal people’s soul in fiction/fantasy but the only thing that came to mind is that Simpsons episode where Bart trades his soul to Milhouse for some ALF pogs, so Driftloon is called Milhouse.

First death

Milhouse died immediately. My first casualty of the game. I thought being a ghost type it might fare ok against some physical attacks but… It did not. I spent more time thinking of its name than it spent in my party. I just sent it out, watched it get hit and deflate, zooming around in the sky above me making a fart noise before unceremoniously plopping to the ground, a wrinkled shell of a balloon. You know what though? It’s fine, we’re fine, I’m fine. I could have had a Ghastly but no. Whatever. It’s fine.

First Trial

The first trial is playing hide and seek with some Yungoos before taking on the totem Pokémon, a Gumshoos. I wasn’t worried really, I had been smashing through Route 2 with the unexpectedly effective combo of Squidward the Inkay and Taylor the Ekans: Squidward used reflect to lower physical damage done against the team then switched with Taylor who used Glare to paralyse the totem and its’ ally Yungoos, plus Wrap on the totem for some continuous damage, then we switched out again to Squidward to top up Reflect and then just hit them with Foul Play. I probably didn’t need to be so tactful, but I never usually am so I was enjoying feeling clever. We took them out nice and easy. I never thought an Ekans would be one of my favourites but that’s one of the reasons I subject myself to the emotional torture of Nuzlocke challenges; I’ve been playing Pokémon since I can remember yet I never bothered with an Ekans until now.

Pokemon 23 Ekans Pokedex: Evolution, Moves, Location, Stats

Bird Up

I wasn’t very worried about the impending Kahuna fight, but then I had been feeling confident about my trial with Llima and we know how that went… I knew that the Kahuna has fighting type Pokémon so I was pleased when a Spearow named Burdy joined the team on Route 3, that is until I saw his stats. His defence was shocking and I nearly lost him in his first battle, so he wasn’t even a viable option, too much of a wild card. Fortunately there was one area left: Melemele Meadows. Kind of unsurprisingly I caught an Oricorio in the meadow named Pom pom who immediately replaced Burdy as chief bird and was so much better. I think that Oricorio is actually a pretty cool Pokémon, at least early in the game. You can pick different flowers in different areas of the world to give it that turn it into a different type, sort of like a bird version of Eevee, at the moment Pom pom is an electric type but going forward hopefully I can adapt it to whatever upcoming fight we have.

First Kahuna

I needn’t have worried really, the Kahuna fight was pretty easy, Pom pom aced it and secured a place as one of my favourites. Rudy the Poplio also evolved (first evolution) into Brionne, who looks a like a clown that wants to be a trapeze artist but isn’t quite confident enough to fully leave the safety of the clowning career yet.

Brionne (Pokémon) - Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia

That’s it until next time! Which Pokémon do you not usually use but have been pleasantly surprised by when you have? Any advice for the road to the next trial?

Chapter 3 >

New Challenge! Pokemon Sun Nuzlocke

Hello! It’s been far too long! I’ve been suffering from writers block very badly over lockdown. Most of the games I’ve been playing are simulators (Sims, Animal Crossing, Stardew Valley, etc) and anything I have to say about them has already been said. I’ve really missed writing and the blogging community though and didn’t want to give up completely. Finally, inspiration struck me for a new blog series: Pokemon Sun Nuzlocke!

The idea to start this came about because my boyfriend Dexter has hurt his back and has spent most of the week lying on the sofa, he’s understandably bored and frustrated so to pass the time he has been watching Jaiden Animations play though her Nuzlocke. He mentioned how it would be fun to play one with me where we battle each other after each gym so we would be each other’s ‘rival’. I wanted to do something to help him feel less bored, that and he doesn’t usually play games with me as he’s not a gamer so I got excited and started rifling through our combined Pokemon collection, which is one of the only games he does play. Between us we have quite a few but the only compatible ones were two copies of Sapphire or Ultra Sun and Moon. We settled on Sun/Moon as I have finished Sun but only once and I wasn’t that into it so I felt that a new perspective could change my mind, and he started it but didn’t get very far.

The Rules

As we were playing together, and the Alola region is a bit different to other games (trials and kahuna instead of gyms, ally pokemon, Z powers, etc) we reviewed the rules and came up with the following:

  • If a pokemon reaches 0 hp it’s ‘dead’ and must be released
  • You can only catch one Pokrmon per route and it must be the first Pokemon you encounter (if ally pokemon are summoned you can only catch the original pokemon)
  • The starter Pokemon must be randomised
  • A route is whenever the little blue box pops up to say you’re in a new area
  • Gift Pokemon and eggs are OK, unless you have already caught a Pokemon on the route it is gifted on in which case you have to release it or put it in the Gift Box on the PC, a thing I made up because gift Pokemon are usually babies and I feel like they wouldn’t last long in the wild, the gift box is a safer place
  • If I have a Pokemon that needs to evolve through trading then Dexter must also have one and agree to the trade, he has implied he might just choose not to because you know… He likes to antagonise me
  • You can use the Switch Pokemon setting (to be honest, I didn’t know that you could turn this off…)
  • No calculating damage before going into fights, this is mainly for Dexter, he loves numbers (nerd) and would do that for fun. I would not.
  • You can do some research before big battles to see what you’re up against and what moves they have
  • No legendary Pokemon
  • You can frontload
  • Daycare is not allowed
  • Can’t use X items
  • Can’t use Pokemon Care (I was upset about this as I like that feature but… fine)

We may add/remove rules as we go as well as we don’t know the game that well so we’ll see.

I Randomly Select You!

To kick everything off we randomised our starters. I was hoping for Rowlet, Dex wanted Poplio, but the reverse happened instead. Nevermind. I have nothing against Poplio I just think he looks like a clown and clowns are creepy. To get around this I named him Rudy after Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer (he’s got a big red nose and will be leading my team!) That endeared me to him a lot more.

My First Catch

The part of the game I was dreading the most was the intro/tutorial. I remembered it taking forever. Unfortunately, this game is determined to have a plot and in depth characters, even if it means we don’t get poke balls for 40 mins. Finally I was able to catch my first wild Pokemon on Route 1… Drumroll… a Grubbin. I wasn’t super happy about that at first as I’d had one in my previous playthrough and it was good but it levels slowly, plus it can’t evolve into its final form until you get to Blush Mountain, and by the time you do that it kind of sucks. Having said that, as Bugsy Malone vice gripped her way to several victories I grew more confident, she’s probably one of the best Pokemon you can get on Route 1 after all. Unfortunately, Dex caught one too so I need to make Bugsy Malone the superior Grubbin.

My True Rival

In the first battle with Hau, his Pichu unexpectedly gave me a bit of trouble. Bugsy Malone was paralysed and the Pichu kept lowering her attack and hitting her with Thunderbolt but we persevered and took it out, his Litten was no trouble after that. Hau is an exhausting character with overwhelming positivity. If someone is that nice in real life they must have something to hide. He opens your first battle with “it doesn’t matter who wins as long as we both have fun!” Outside of the gaming world I wholeheartedly agree with that statement but I was raised with Gary Oak as my OG rival so I want to crush you, and if you don’t care when I do it then it takes the fun out of it for me. I really came to appreciate the idea Dex had had in that moment, my anticipation for our future battle was growing, and while I thought he would best me as I have very little experience with fighting real people in Pokemon, I was looking forward to a competitive fight. Dexter is my true rival in this game.

Getting Schooled

In the game-enforced interest of trying to get to know Lillie better we were basically handcuffed together as she dragged me round town and we ended up at the Trainer’s school where it was decided for me that I should enroll. I fought my way through the students there and was then challenged by the teacher who, in a good twist I think in Pokemon games, fought me with the leftover starter Rowlet. Bugsy took care of it but it was a bit tricky and I had to use a fair amount of potions. Then Dexter fought her in his game where she sent out Litten against his Rowlet and… HE GOT KO’d!!! We both looked at each other, and for a second I was torn between laughing maniacally or offering an out. I offered an out. That is how annoying the intro of this game is. If Dexter had had to restart the game at that point he would have had to go through ANOTHER 2 HOURS to get back to this point and we both knew he wouldn’t do it. Instead we agreed to pretend this never happened but any other KO after this would definitely count.

Despite our agreement I did tease him and acted like I had the moral high ground, but Karma is a bitch. I met Llima in Hau’oli city and was taken out by his ridiculously aggressive Yungoos. It just kept coming at me, and when it wasn’t doing that it was lowering Bugsy/Rudy’s defence. I looked at Dex sheepishly and now it was his (rightful) turn to be smug. As he had been KO’d and I’d let it pass he did the same for me on the same conditions. I do feel guilty but… I can’t do that intro again so soon guys, I can’t, and I’d got too excited about finally having something to write about to give up so we’re doing it, think what you will of me. Guilt and failure aside I thought we had bigger problems. I genuinely did not think that I could beat Llima with my two Pokemon. Neither of us expected this game to be this hard so early on. When we made the rules we had done a bit of research on Reddit and there was some dispute on what is classified as a Route. We decided to use the rule where anything classified as being on Route 1 (i.e. the beach near Kukui’s house, the Trainer school and Hau’oli city) is all one area, we had also put a level cap where you could only be the level of the next big battle’s Pokemon (so right now we were capped at 10). However, in light of the aggressive Yungoos we decided to ditch the level cap (it was getting hard anyway as Rudy was leveling so dang fast), and that you could catch a new Pokemon in any area where the blue box appeared in the bottom of the screen saying where you were. This meant I could go back and get three new Pokemon in the city, the beach and the school.

My Hero

My first catch was a Wingull in the city, who I named Peeko (Sapphire throwback). Not the knight in shining armor I was hoping for. At the trainer school I caught a Meowth called Rocket, which is definitely not the best Pokemon I could have got there but it’s fine, I’m fine, we’re fine. My final hope was the beach near Kukui’s house. I had kind of given up hope at this point and had resigned myself to being a basic bitch trainer BUT Tapu Koko must have been smiling down on me. I caught an Inkay (Squidward). It did not take me long at all to realise that Squidward is KICK ASS. It has the ability Contrary which makes stat changes have the opposite effect and it knew both Reflect and Foul Play, meaning I could lower any physical damage being done to my team, then attack using the enemies’ strength against it (perfect for say… An aggressive Yungoos) AND when the Yungoos would inevitably try to lower Squidward’s defence he would just raise it instead. I sauntered back up to Llima and that is exactly what happened. I know you’re not supposed to have favourites but Squidward is currently top tier, the best, I love him. If anything happens to him I might cry.

A very bad start to my new challenge but we are both having fun so it doesn’t matter, right Hau? Have you ever tried a Nuzlocke in Sun/Moon? How did it go? Also, how are you in general if you were a previous Dragons Tea Party reader? I hope it’s been a good year for you all. Stand by for the next post where we will hopefully complete the first Island challenge!

Chapter 2 >

Animal Crossing: First Impressions

Note: As you’ll see from the date on the images I wrote this post a while ago and my island has developed a lot since then but this sat in my drafts for a while because ironically, I was too busy playing Animal Crossing and kept forgetting to publish it…

I am an Animal Crossing virgin. Technically… All I have played in the past is Pocket Camp which I don’t think is as big as any previous AC games (I could be wrong…) I managed to get hold of a Switch for a reasonable price not that long ago and after asking my friends and Twitter what I should get as my first game (Switch games are so expensive! Just going to get one every pay day or so), Animal Crossing seemed like a popular choice. I was worried I had missed the sea plane one it, but my bestie was very keen to get me set up and gave me as much as I could carry to take back to my island to help get me started. She even wrote a guide for me! Usually I am the more experienced gamer so it was a bit of a twist on our relationship, I think she’s enjoying it.

Her: “What is your island flower?”

Me: “I haven’t seen any yet unless… There’s loads of weeds, are weeds my flower?”

Her: “… No”

Prior to starting the game this was my approximate knowledge of it (thanks to Facebook and Twitter): There’s an owl who doesn’t like bugs, everyone hates the Easter Bunny, and parsnips are a really big deal but I’m not sure why.

Within the first 15 minutes of gameplay I managed to grasp the vague plot:

I signed up for this desert island getaway with 2 others (Pashmina and Goose, who is confusingly not a goose). When we get there we have a nice time setting up, I am instantly favoured by our guides, shady Raccoon Tom and his mini-mes. Then Tom starts talking about payment. “Oh no, you don’t have any bells???” You failed to take payment for a lavish holiday upfront? I think that’s on you at this point. Tom has an idea though. Nook miles! Do all the things and pay him off like that! Can’t we beat him up? There’s a crafting table right there, Pashmina, Goose and I could arm ourselves with flimsy axes or spades and launch an attack, freeing ourselves from debt. Mutiny doesn’t seem to be an option though (Animal Crossing: Pirates could have been the sequel/expansion where you can choose an alternative lifestyle and go raid other players islands, assemble a crew and build a sweet boat). Instead the idea is we peacefully learn to craft stuff and build the island into our own little town.

While the mutiny and pirate idea is far cooler in my opinion I instantly appreciated the calm, and no pressure atmosphere the game brings. You may be in debt but Tom isn’t knocking on your door in the middle of the night with a bat (not yet anyway). You go about setting up our island, exploring and building. Or, I do anyway, Pashmina and Goose are just chilling, fishing, chasing butterflies etc. Meanwhile I’m crafting stuff to furnish my tent and the surrounding area. Each to their own. They won’t be getting any nook miles that way though, better get on it or they’ll be slaves forever.

I come to realise that this is VERY similar to one of my favourite games, Stardew Valley. Plant your flowers, collect resources to craft more and more stuff, make friends with the villagers, collect things, upgrade your house, there’s even a museum where all your finds are going. Is there going to be a community center too? I’m not complaining, I love Stardew Valley, I’m glad it’s similar, I’ve played it to death though so it’s nice to have something to replace it.

I managed to upgrade my tent to a cute, little shed and was all pleased but then saw Pashmina and Goose’s, they have bigger houses. At least on the outside anyway. They aren’t even doing anything! Not fair.

My friend invited me to her island, she’s been playing since it came out so she has a lot going on. It was really fun, she gave me a tour while chatting to me on the phone, we went to the museum, and looked at all the buildings and little areas she’d made. It was like a proper day out! The only thing I was a little disappointed with was that you can’t actually go on any of the stuff like the spinning tea cups ride or even do things like have animations of you building sandcastles or playing a board game etc. I hope at least the other villagers can?

Overall, I am glad I bought the game, it is good fun. I am getting a little frustrated at the moment because I want more stuff to craft and I want to get my island going properly but I’ve only just managed to get the shop built so it’s coming along slowly. However, as frustrating as the slow pace is I appreciate it a lot. The game almost forces you to not spend hours at a time on there (unless you really like fishing), at least at first anyway, which is not something I’m used to games doing. It means it’s not dominating my time and I can switch over to what I was playing before to help tide me over until the next day if I want to keep playing games when I’m done foraging and crafting. Usually when I get a new game the ones I had on the go before it arrived will be instantly forgotten but not this time.

If you want a new island to visit hit me up! I’m happy to have visitors/be a visitor. I’m finding it really fascinating seeing what everyone has done differently with their islands. My friend had a very flowery, country village with some really random but cool bits here and there all intersecting and spread out, then I visited The Wandering Mage’s island and that’s like a little metropolis, there’s a lot of different sections (the orchard, the flower garden, the shopping centre…) all very organised and super pretty.

Dragon’s Nuzlocke Challenge: Day 14 – The Finale!

←Day 13

The Final Team

  • Heather (Dotrio)
  • Pointy (Nidoqueen)
  • Sleepy ZZZ (Hypno)
  • Swirlyo (Poliwag)
  • Friglet (Girafarig)
  • MyLilPony (Rapidash)

We had been training for a very, very long time. Many Tentacruels and Stantler were killed in an attempt to level the team with no accidental casualties and finally our hard work had paid off. My team were all levelled to their high 30s and everyone, excluding the stubborn MyLilPony, had evolved. I was sure they’d get to their level 40s in Victory Road. Cautiously we approached the cave.

Dragon: “Right team, here’s the plan: we duck in. Have a look around and see what sort of Pokémon there are and then we duck back out and go back to the lady’s house down the road to rest up… Let’s go!”

Cautiously we entered the cave and were immediately assaulted by a Gravler, he was promptly caught and sent to the PC. The last Pokémon I’d ever catch. I quickly realised that Swirlyo had a huge advantage in this cave: he could one-shot almost everything with Surf. We made our way through the cave, constantly going back to the house a bit down the road to rest when anyone took a little too much damage than I was comfortable with. I didn’t have any money left so I had to be careful! Finally we braved going past the front door and down a couple of ladders when my nemesis BLAAAA accosted us. The rival fight? Already? OK…

We easily beat him and he sort of admitted that he might be a bit of a douche canoe. Cool… What’s through this doorway here? Light? We’re on the other side?


Pointy: “Did you want more fights?”

Dragon: “Well… Yeah! I want you guys to level up as much as possible and I want more money for potions!”

Friglet: “Well, there were some ladders we didn’t explore, there’s probably some items in there still.”

Dragons: “Great idea, Friglet!”

It was not a great idea. Half an hour later, while desperately trying to figure out how to get to an item that was tantalisingly close yet so far, Friglet fell to a self-destructing Graveler. Great. Now I only had 5 Pokémon for the Elite Four.

I gave up on the elusive item and we marched to the Elite Four. I must admit that at this point, while I’d never tell the team, I just wanted it over with. I had procrastinated for too long and I was just happy to have gotten this far. I had made a promise though and I intended to go through with it. I took out the newly caught Graveler (Baldur) to replace Friglet and off we went…

Elite Four Battle Number 1 – Will

Unfortunately, battle number 1 was what I’d been training Friglet up for. His dark moves would have been perfect against all of the Psychic types but… Never mind. Will’s Xatu proved to be a huge problem. I had nothing on bird or psychic Pokémon here and after going with what I had hoped would be the most sensible option (Baldur) I realised my mistake. Baldur was immediately taken out, Swirlyo quickly followed suit…

Crossing my fingers I sent out Sleepy ZZZ, he could take the hit from the Psychic moves and he eventually managed to Headbutt the Xatu to death, though it took him a long while, and a lot of potions. He did the same to the next Xatu, with me throwing a potion at him every few turns until that too fell and Will sent out a Slowbro. Ok… Heather could deal with this, bird has advantage over water… Right? Heather joined her fallen team mates…


At this point I was starting to panic. I wasn’t even going to make it past the first guy after all this time?! Sleepy ZZZ faced the Slowbro and took him out after several headbutts and potions. I was optimistic about the next Pokémon: An Exeggcute. MyLilPony had this in the bag.

MyLilPony somehow did not have this in the bag. Poor Sleepy ZZZ was dragged out again…

Dragon: “We’re nearly there Sleepy ZZZ, keep at it!”

Sleepy ZZZ: “… My head is so sore from all this headbutting bro… I don’t know if I can…”

Dragon: “Don’t be ridiculous, you are my second best Pokémon after Pointy and we would never be here without you. This is your moment, this is what we’ve been working for. Take this Ether and show them who’s boss!”

Sleepy ZZZ: “Uuurgh… OK…”

With a final, fatal headbutt the Exeggcute was sent sprawling at Will’s feet. We’d done it. We’d defeated an Elite Four member!


I hugged him and he gave a weak smile. The battle had definitely taken its’ toll, on our fallen team mates mostly of course but on my potions supply and Sleepy ZZZ’s health as well.

Pointy: “I wanted to help…”

Dragon: “You’re a poison type, you would have been at a huge disadvantage against Psychic… You’re the main event in the next battle though. Are you ready?”

Pointy: “… I am. Do you think we’ll win?”

Dragon: “… I want to… But I don’t think so. Do you?”

Pointy: “No… But I want to try. If we fail I can be reunited with Nointy… Do you think our egg will be OK?”

Dragon: “Burd will take care of it.”

Pointy: “I don’t think I could have named a better godfather… Except Hedwig but you know… He’s dead too.”

Sleepy ZZZ: “Whatever happens you guys, I’ve had a great time.”

Dragon: “It’s truly been an honour.”

We had one last group hug, I took a deep breath and kicked open the door to the second Elite 4 member.

Elite Four Battle Number 2 – Koga

Dragon: “You’re going down Koga… Maybe.”

Koga: “You’re taking me on with just two Pokémon? That’s brave… But foolish.”

Dragon: “I have faith in Pointy and Sleepy ZZZ… I also have no choice.”

Koga: “Very well.”

The battle commenced and we had a strong start. Pointy made short work of the Ariados and Venomoth. That was already two Pokémon down! I started to feel a little more confident.

Dragon: “Keep it up Pointy! You’re doing it!”

Pointy: “As if I was going to let a couple of bugs take me down.”

Koga: “They were just the beginning, Go Forretress!”

Pointy: “Pfft. I do’t think so. Ice Punch, Bit-”


Dragon: “NOOOOO!!!!!”

The Forretress was too fast, it exploded before Pointy could attack, she tried to stand strong against the blast but it was just too much. She fell to the floor with a resounding THUMP. Her death was a punch to my gut, she’d become a fast favourite throughout the journey and while Sleepy ZZZ could hold his own I did not expect he’d be able to do so in what was coming.

Any minuscule remaining hope I’d had of defeating the Elite Four was shattered. Sleepy ZZZ gulped and nodded at me as he stepped up to the plate. A Crobat was sent out to meet him and, while it poisoned Sleepy he managed to take it out.

Here we were… Koga’s last Pokémon: a Muk. A rather high leveled Muk. Exhausted Sleepy ZZZ never stood a chance. Down he went covered in gross poison goop. Our fates intertwined, I too fell to my knees and collapsed…

It was a rainy, winters’ night when Burd, Squidward, Nommy, Smokey and an egg were released from the PC and informed that their trainer had fallen. Nommy and Smokey wasted no time and ran off into the wilderness. They hadn’t been close to the trainer at all. Burd and Squidward however shared a sad look and then at the egg. They knew what they had to do. Together they hatched the egg and raised the baby female Nidoran that came from it. They make a strange family to be sure, a giant squid, a bird and a guinea pig but it works. The Nidoran had a very unique upbringing, it’s rare to find a Nidoran that enjoys swimming and sleeping in nests. Growing up hearing stories about the bravery of her parents and the trainer that had taken her mother all the way to the Elite Four it was a very ambitious Nidoran, determined to find a trainer worthy of her skill to take her on their Elite 4 journey. One thing’s for sure, if it was anything like its’ mother it would go on to do great things. Its’ name? Nurdward.


The End…


In a parallel Universe Dragon’s still alive, this version of her was sat at work minding her own business when suddenly…



So there we have it everybody! Thank you to everyone that stuck with me throughout my journey and I apologise for the posts being a little sporadic at times. It was a fun journey, if a little stressful at times, hugely rewarding and I learned a lot more about Pokémon! I would consider doing a Nuzlocke again but maybe with some different rules… Not for a long time though! I need to recover from this one first! 

Would you consider taking the Nuzlocke challenge? Have you ever completed one? Which Pokémon game would you take the challenge on?









Dragon’s Nuzlocke Challenge: Day 13 – Getting Ready…

←Day 12

Ah ha! I bet you thought I’d given up on this! Well, I did for a little while to be honest. After beating the 8th gym I needed a little break from Pokémon, I never expected to get past the 4th gym, let alone the 8th! After a couple of weeks I picked it back up and started the journey to the Elite Four…

The Team

  • Burd (Fearow)
  • Pointy (Nidoqueen)
  • Sleepy ZZZ (Hypno)
  • Squidward (Tentacruel)
  • Burgie (Haunter)
  • Fritatta (Exeggcute)


Squidward: “No. I won’t do it.”

Dragon: “Come on, I need you to learn Waterfall so we can get to the Elite Four.”

Squidward: “I am sick of being an HM Whore. If you make me learn that too then all of my moves will be HMs and I just won’t stand for that.”

Dragon: “Fine… Fine… I guess I’ll just go and- HIIIYAAAAA!”

I threw the HM disc at Squidward, hitting him in the eye.

Squidward: “NO! I WILL NOT- Wait… I can’t learn it! Woohoo!”

Dragon: “You can learn every other HM move but that one?”

Squidward: “Apparently. Now I can just be a valuable team member instead!”

Dragon: “Into the PC with you Squidward.”

Squidward: “But…”

Dragon: “I know. I wish it wasn’t the case but I need a Pokémon that can learn Waterfall and having two water Pokémon is a bit of a waste… If there’s a computer past the waterfall maybe I’ll get you out then! Goodbye!”

I regarded my new water Pokémon Swirlyo the Poliwhirl, who looked back at me with his big eyes…

Dragon: “Where is your mouth?”

Swirlyo: “…”

Dragon: “Ah well, less dialogue to write!” (yeah, I broke the fourth wall, so what?)

With Swirlyo’s eyes bulging in fear and surprise at the sudden increase of power in his moves we zoomed up the waterfall. Have you ever seen a tadpole climb a waterfall? Have you ever seen a person surf on a tadpole? It’s pretty impressive. I had to maintain my balance on one toe the whole time.

The first Pokémon we encountered was a Doduo, in all honesty I was hoping for something a little more exciting than that in this area but fine. Heather joined the reserves in the PC and I fought my way through some more trainers, all while trying to level up Swirlyo and Fritatta who were both in their early 20s still. We made our way to another new area and suddenly I saw a burst of flame through the grass… Could it be? It was! A Ponyta!

Image result for ponyta pokemon silver

Dragon: “*high pitched squealing* oh my gooood, it’s a pretty pony! I want it! Look at his face he’s so pretty!!!”

Pointy: *filing her claws with a tree trunk* “Pfft, he’s got nothing on me. Stupid dainty horse, I could flick him and he’d fall over.”

Enemy Ponyta: *flicking mane dangerously close to some trees* “What’s that you prehistoric Poké-bitch? Come waddle over on those boulders you call legs and say that to my face!”

Without a word Pointy set down the tree trunk and began sauntering over to the Ponyta, rolling up her imaginary sleeves in the process.

Enemy Ponyta: “Woah, steady on now, when I said boulder I meant boulders of… Of cloud and… Your nails look so good, will you do my hooves like that some day? When you were far away you seemed so much smaller and now… Now that you’re… Right here in front of me… I can see just how magnificent you are… Your breath smells so intoxicating I just… Please don’t kill me.”

Dragon: “Pointy, do NOT touch him! We don’t have any fire Pokémon!”

Pointy rolled her eyes, and turned around. The Ponyta breathed a sigh of relief but then Pointy quickly turned around and growled, making the Ponyta squeal in fear and cower on the ground, his mane spluttering. I sighed and caught him, transferring him to the PC for later.

We travelled a little further when a trainer pounced on us, sending out a Pikachu. We did struggle a little, having no type advantage, but Pointy managed to get rid of it though not without taking significant damage herself. The opposing trainer then sent out a Blastoise. I retaliated with Burd who put up a good fight but got too injured to carry on so Sleepy ZZZ stepped up to the challenge, his health was immediately reduced to the red section… Who else could I send out? Fritatta and Swirlyo wouldn’t last a second, all my “good” Pokémon were badly injured… Except for Burgie. Hesitantly, I him out and he took a hit which was not as bad as others but did over half health damage… Oh no. I needed Burd to recover but to do that I’d have to sacrifice Burgie… Or maybe one of the others… But Burgie was technically my weakest team member…

Burgie: “I know what needs to be done Dragon, I’m ready.”

Dragon: “I can’t do it Burgie… You are my last original team member. You’ve been with me through my whole journey…”

Burgie: “And we had some good times but we both know that I’m not going to be of much use to you in the upcoming battles. There are Pokémon in the PC that would fill this space in the team better. I’m just glad I got this far with you, I’ve been all over the Johto region and licked so many things that I never would have if you hadn’t caught me, and to die on the road to the Elite Four is a good death. I thank you.”

Burd: *Weakly* “Burgie… No… Don’t do it Dragon…”

Dragon: “I… I can’t!”

Burgie smiled sadly and licked my face, for once I wasn’t repulsed, then before I could do anything he used his turn, whipping his tongue into my backpack and grabbing a Hyper Potion, throwing it to Burd who recovered instantly.

Dragon and Burd: “NO!!!”

A jet of water hit Burgie and his ghostly form turned to smoke, drifting away in the wind. The Blastoise smirked, seeing the anguish on the teams’ faces. Burd stepped forward to face him, shaking with anger.

Burd “I have seen too many friends fall on this journey, but I have also seen each of them avenged. Burgie shall be no different, his noble sacrifice will not be in vain.”

With that Burd soared into the air in a graceful arc, then swooped down at a high speed, spearing the Blastoise with his beak and finishing him. We all watched as the last of Burgies’ smokey remains faded into the clouds and then dragged ourselves to a kind lady’s house where we rested.

I decided it was really time to get Fritatta and Swirlyo levelled properly so once everyone had regained their strength we set out to train. As Fritatta prepared for his fight a Doduo appeared, I went to switch out Fritatta but the Doduo used Pursuit finishing Friatta as he zoomed back to his Pokéball. I took a deep breath and sighed. There was no PC anywhere near that I knew of.

We flew back to Johto and I ran into a Pokécentre, there I withdrew MyLilPony, the recently caught Ponyta, and Friglet the Girafarig who had been recommended to me as he can learn dark type moves. I turned off the PC and went to leave but my eyes fell on Burd. I’d been getting worried about him, we had a strong bond and he was one of my most reliable team mates but lately he’d been getting weaker and weaker in comparison to other trainers’ Pokémon. I also couldn’t forget his promise to Hedwig: that he’d take a trip around the world for the both of them. Could I save him by putting him in the PC? That way even if I failed he’d still be able to live out his retirement. I could use my new Doduo, Heather, to fly now (even though that makes no sense as Doduo has no wings). Burd caught me looking at him and smiled.

Burd: “Don’t worry Dragon, my time is nearly up. I can feel it. If Heather fails though, I’ll be here.”

Dragon: “I’ll miss you Burd! You’ve been with me for ages. Remember when you took on the second gym all by yourself?”

Burd: “Good times!”

Sleepy ZZZ: “I’ll see you on the other side bro, take it easy.”

Burd: “You’re Dragon’s oldest Pokémon now Sleepy, keep her and the team safe.”

Sleepy ZZZ: “We’ll be fine bro, don’t stress.”

Proud Burd
Old pic of Burd from back in the day when he won us the second badge… They grow up so fast.

They fist-bumped and then the team had a group hug. Everyone had grown to admire and respect Burd, who had become the voice of reason after Hedwig’s unfortunate demise. Pointy had to turn away quickly because she had something in her eye. Finally, Burd was sucked into the PC, waving as he went, and I withdrew Heather. Everyone eyed her doubtfully.

Pointy: “How can she fly… If she has no wings?”

Dragon: “I guess we’ll find out…”

Heather’s right head: “I think we just like… Spin really fast to be honest, there’s no other explanation.”

Heather’s left head: “Uh huh, totally spin fast like a helicopter. You’ll just have to, like, trust us.”

Image result for doduo learn fly
Credit to Zakhero on Deviant Art

Friglet: “I’m sure it will be fine!” *a whisper coming from his rear end* “we’ll plummet to our deaths.”

Swrilyo: *Eyes widen in fear*

MyLilPony: “Death?! No, I don’t do death… Can I go back to the PC?”

Pointy: “You scared, Pony?”

MyLilPony: “… No… I just… Like life.”

Pointy: “Don’t worry, no one’s dying… In flight anyway.”

MyLilPony did a high pitched squeal and cowered on the ground.

Friglet: “Don’t worry, I have faith in Heather!” *whispering* “Life is meaningless.”

Dragon: “… Right… Well we’re off to a good start! We’re just missing some levels… It’s time for some grinding. Cue the montage!”

Join us next time for the final chapter of Dragon’s Nuzlocke Chellenge as the team take on Victory Road and the Elite Four… Will the team succeed? What do you think? Place your bets now!

The Team

  • Heather (Doduo)
  • Pointy (Nidoqueen)
  • Sleepy ZZZ (Hypno)
  • Swirlyo (Poliwag)
  • Friglet (Girafarig)
  • MyLilPony (Ponyta)


  • Burgie (Haunter)
  • Fritatta (Exeggcute)


  • Burd (Fearow)
  • Nommy (Slowpoke)
  • Smokey (Koffing)
  • Squidward (Tentacruel)




The Legend of Zelda: The Nostalgia Crisis

Good news everyone! A friend of mine has offered to lend me his Wii U so that I can play The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and Wind Waker. I’m super excited but also a little worried. I haven’t played a proper “big console” Zelda game for years, the last one I played was Skyward Sword where I nearly threw the Wii motion plus out the window and discovered a hatred for robot fairies. Since I left my parents’ house to go to Uni (about 5 or 6 years ago now) I have only ever played Zelda games on my 3DS because I opted to get a Playstation as my University Gaming Companion rather than a Wii (I know! Woe is me. How did I survive with just my PS4 and 3DS?!). I don’t regret that choice but I have missed Nintendo a lot. The 3DS has done well with Link Between Worlds and Phantom Hourglass but it hasn’t quite filled the void.

Image result for wind waker loz

While I am super excited about getting my hands on both of these games I am most excited about Wind Waker. I used to love it when I was younger. I spent hours and hours just sailing around the world with no particular goal, just cruising, the King of Red Lions and I had some good times. Sometimes I’d just run around random islands exploring, I’d follow NPCs sometimes just to see where they went, or I’d mess about trying to get up to a ledge or platform for ages just to see if I could. Sometimes my curiosity would pay off and I’d get a reward for my trouble but more often than not there was no incentive, it was just fun to mess about. As far as actual progress goes I usually got as far as finishing the three sage’s temples but then I’d get a little uneasy. In all honesty I was kind of scared of Ganon. That bit where you first see him was super sinister to me as a kid and let’s be honest, how beautiful is that world? Wouldn’t you just want to stay there if you could? By my 8 year old logic Ganon wasn’t actually destroying anything as long as I didn’t progress so… Let’s go visit the bird people! Eventually I’d have a little break playing something else for a bit, then I’d come back to Wind Waker and start again from the beginning.

Image result for wind waker ganon fire
This was terrifying to 8 year old me.

So what am I worried about? Well… I had turkey dinosaurs for dinner the other day for the first time in years and they just weren’t anywhere near as good as I remember them. I would still like to eat a lot of them, but I know that it won’t be with the same enthusiasm that I experienced when I was younger. What if the same thing happens with Wind Waker and I don’t love it like I used to? What if it’s not how I remember it and the nostalgia I feel for that time gets tainted with a feeling of melancholy because the nostalgia’s built it up and I end up disappointed? What if Wind Waker is a turkey dinosaur?

Image result for medli wind waker in game
The (adorable) character closest to a turkey dinosaur

The core thing concerning me is how my play style has changed as that is the thing most likely to impact my experience of the game. I find it incredibly hard to just mess about in games now but that was the thing I enjoyed doing the most back in the day. Now I always feel like I should be doing something for a reason. Am I going to spend an hour following random NPCs around just because I’m curious to see where they go? Hell no. Why not? I don’t know… I don’t have time for that I guess. Or do I? I have no time limit on this game (my friend has a Switch now so there’s not much reason at all that he’d need the Wii U back – of course I do plan on giving it back… Eventually), no one is going to be nagging me to finish it. Now that I’ve finished God of War 4 there are no other games that I want to focus on this year, sure I can’t spend as much time on it at once like I used to but that doesn’t mean I need to rush it… Maybe I will follow random NPCs around! Maybe I’ll catch a pig and try to throw it onto my boat because they’re adorable and I want a pig companion! Maybe I’ll use the Hyoi Pears to posses countless seagulls and just fly around because I like flying… I just want to experience it again with the same feeling that I used to have when I was back in my room in my parents house, excitedly putting the tiny GameCube disc in, listening to the jaunty theme music, seeing the beautiful blue Wind Waker start up screen, and settling down and spending hours and hours at a time exploring.

wind waker pigs

Some readers may be thinking “what about Breath of the Wild?! Aren’t you more excited for that?!” Honestly? No. It’s not that I don’t want to play it. I desperately want to and when it was released it was killing me that seemingly everyone else was playing it but I have been waiting to play Wind Waker for years. My friend told me that there’s a condition to me borrowing his Wii U: I have to play Breath of the Wild before Wind Waker and at that moment a wave of unexpected revulsion towards that game crashed over me, let’s face it, that’s not going to happen. I’ll play it first if he is there in the room with me because I know he wants to discuss it and everything but as soon as I’ve kicked him out I’m getting into my cosiest pyjamas, making a nice cup of tea, grabbing a packet of biscuits and just shutting myself away to sail the Great Sea.

Image result for wind waker sailing

You know what? To finish off this nostalgic post let’s have a quick listen to the extremely nostalgic Gamecube start up music…

Aah, sweet nostalgia with a twist.


Is there anything good from your past you’ve been unwilling to visit for fear of ruining the nostalgia? How would you feel about playing some of your favourite games from your youth now? Have you played the remastered Wind Waker and was it as good as you remembered?

Later Levels Question of the Month – May 2018. The Pokemon Rescue Centre

Every month I say I’ll participate in Later Levels’ Question of the Month, and every month I forget… Not this month! This month the question was set by the lovely Pix1001, a wonderful blogger with an eye for game related fashion.

Maybe it’s because I’m currently working up to the finale of my Nuzlocke challenge (yes, I haven’t forgotten it!) but Pokémon was the first thing that came to mind for this question. In all honesty, even I think that my answer is so sickly sweet that it made me throw up a little after I re-read it but I also didn’t want to change anything so… Enjoy!

If you could live in any video game settlement (ie a town, village, city, etc), where would you choose to live and why; and what role would you play in it?

Kanto has always been a wonderful place to live, it’s not dangerous but the fun you can have with Pokémon mean that there’s no end to adventure! Ever since Ash became the champion of the Elite Four there’s been a huge surge in Pokémon trainers here in Pallet Town. While the majority of them are good trainers, unfortunately there’s always some that treat their Pokémon poorly or just decide that the Trainer life isn’t for them, releasing Pokémon who have become accustomed to living in a Pokémon ball into the wild and expecting them to be fine. That’s where I come in.

I own a Rescue Centre on the outskirts of town that takes in these Pokémon, I take care of them and train them, once they are strong enough they have the option of leaving and making a new life for themselves in the wild, staying and helping around the Rescue, or being adopted. Many get attached to the Rescue so even if they choose to leave they’ll often come back to visit. Those that stay are given jobs. For example, there’s a few Squirtles who keep the lake full of fresh water for the Water Pokémon (mainly Magikarp), a Chansey who runs the clinic, several Glooms and Oddish that tend to the garden, and of course, due to Ash’s popularity we have an overabundance of Pikachus who generate natural electricity for us. There’s also the scouting team that come with me on my daily patrol to find abandoned Pokémon: Swellow, Mightyena, Ponyta, and of course my own Pokémon, Cubone.

As for the adopted Pokémon, Professor Oak recommends the centre to budding trainers or just those looking for a pet, both the trainers and Pokémon decide if they want to be a team. It makes for an instant connection as both parties are in agreement and their bond is a lot stronger than normal as a result.

Here’s a recent case:

Maple the Magikarp

As we all know, Magikarp are considered to be the worst Pokémon but they can become your finest team member once they evolve if you have the patience to level them. Unfortunately, a lot of trainers don’t and that is why Magikarp is the most frequently abandoned Pokémon. A particular case springs to mind here: One day my team and I were out on patrol when, from his high vantage point, Swellow spotted a large flock of Spearow attacking something, we ran to see what all the commotion was and found that they were trying to reach a badly injured Magikarp covered in peck marks who’d managed to flop into a log to protect herself. She must be one of the many Magikarp abandoned by thoughtless trainers that don’t think to leave their Pokémon in an appropriate environment, Water type Pokémon are the most vulnerable to this. Cubone and Mightyena ran to fend off the Spearows closest to the log while Ponyta ran around the area letting her fiery mane go wild. The Spearows, disgruntled by the smoke and sudden heat, flew off to find something else to torment. Cubone crawled into the log and pushed the Magikarp out and I poured some water from my bottle on her. We needed to get her to Chansey in the clinic ASAP so I soaked one of our emergency blankets in water and placed her inside, Swellow grabbed the four corners of the blanket and flew him back to the Rescue Centre as fast as he could. Chansey worked her magic and the Magikarp made a full recovery!

We introduced her to the lake and named her Maple, after the log we found her in. As we have so many Magikarp they have a class together everyday where we train them, our goal is to get them to learn tackle so that they can defend themselves, then they can leave or be adopted. Maple had a slow start (as most of them do) but eventually her splashes took more of an aggressive form and soon she was one of the best in the lake. A couple of weeks later we were visited by a young boy with his parents, they’d come to get him his first Pokémon. He was very keen to see the water Pokémon and I showed him the ones that were ready for adoption. Suddenly, it was showing off time at the lake. A Squirtle and Poliwhirl used Bubble to create lots of colourful, mesmerising bubbles floating through the air, a Goldeen did a backflip, the light catching its’ horn in mid leap, Horsea swam up to the edge and looked up at the boy with its’ adorable, cute eyes… Then Maple swam up to the family and looked at them gormlessly. They looked back, curious. Then Maple splashed them, soaking them. For a second there was silence and just as I started to apologise the boy squealed with laughter, jumped into the lake and splashed Maple back. Maple was delighted and they kept splashing each other and swimming around together. The family left with a very happy Magikarp that day. A couple of months later I received an update from them telling me that Maple had evolved, they enclosed a picture of their son learning to surf on waves Maple was creating with her tail, both looked like they were having great fun and underneath the picture they’d written “Best Friends!”

Image result for magikarp

Seriously, if Pokémon Rescue was a game I would love it. You could start off with a small shelter and then the more Pokémon you help, the more areas open up (ex. you need 4 water Pokémon to open the lake, you need 2 Oddish to start a garden, if you want to decorate the garden with a rockery you need a rock type Pokémon to help…). Just on the off chance any Nintendo people are reading… Please??? 



Dragon’s Nuzlocke Challenge: Day 11 – Ice Ice Maybe

←Day 10

The Team

  • Burd (Fearow)
  • Squidward (Tentacool)
  • Sleepy ZZZ (Hypno)
  • Pointy (Nidoqueen)
  • Zappy (Magneton)

After defeating Team Rocket in the Radio Tower I was gifted the Silver Wing… I had a vague memory of someone mentioning this near the whirlpool infested island that I couldn’t get to before near Cianwood City, and after losing Nointy and Popotte I wasn’t looking forward to my attempt at conquering the 8th Gym. What the Hell. We set off to investigate.

Dragon: “Right Squidward, you need to learn Whirlpool.”

Squidward looked disappointed and sighed.

Dragon: “What’s the matter?”

Squidward: “I already know Cut and Surf, now I’m going to learn Whirlpool… Do you even like any of my original attacks? Am I just an HM Whore to you?”

Dragon: *High pitched* “What? Noooo! No, no, no! Not at all! I really like your original moves… It just happens to be the case that you can learn most HM moves…”

Squidward: “I could be great you know, I could learn Hydro Pump eventually but I won’t be able to because of all these HM moves.”

Dragon: “You still have an extra slot, we can replace Bubble Beam with Hydro Pump.”

Squidward: “I like Bubble Beam! I can shoot bubbles!!! Who wouldn’t want that?!”

Dragon: “OK… If all goes well I promise that, when it’s no longer needed, I will take you to the move deleter and we can delete Cut.”

Squidward: “Fine.”

We sailed over the whirpools and into the cave. A new area! Suddenly the battle music began and the first Pokémon flopped into view. A Seel.

Dragon: “Oh my… You… are… ADORABLE!”

Seel: “Arf?”

Dragon: *tickling his belly* “Who’s a lovely Seel? You’re a lovely Seel! Yes you are!”

Zappy: “Oh god… It’s a cute one.”

Pointy: “Are we not cute enough for you Dragon?”

I glanced over at my team: A magnet, a blue dinosaur, a stumpy ostrich, a jellyfish, and a creepy, yellow hypnotist.

Dragon: “I mean… You guys are so great… You have to remember, beauty is on the inside.”

The team exchanged looks but I was too absorbed in playing with the newly discovered Seel that I didn’t notice.

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Pokémon games are looking so realistic nowadays. This Seel almost looks real.

Dragon: “Do you want to come with us boy?”

Seel: *happily* “Arf! Arf! Arf!”

Dragon: “Awesome. I shall name you… Arf Arf.”

Zappy: “Wow.”

Pointy: *Facepalming* “I can’t believe something called ‘Arf Arf’ is taking Nointy’s place on the team.”

Dragon: “I know you’ve suffered a huge loss Pointy, we all miss Nointy. It would be really helpful if you could just reign in the sass a tiny bit though. Arf Arf can learn ice moves, he could be our ticket though the 8th gym.”

Pointy: “We wouldn’t need an ice type to carry us if Nointy was still alive.”

Dragon: “OK, take a time out!”

I transferred a sulking Pointy to the PC and withdrew Sluuuuurp the Lickitung instead (side note: I may have lost my notes around the time I caught Sluuurp and not mentioned him before. I caught him on Route 44 between Mahogany Town and the Ice Cave).

Sluuurp: *lick*

Dragon: “Oh no, not another one. What is it with licky Pokémon?

Sluuurp: “I met Burgie while I was in the PC and we licked all the inside of the computer together.”

Dragon: “Why?”

Sluuurp: “Have you ever been trapped in a PC? What else is there to do?” *lick*

Arf Arf: *licks Dragon’s face* “Arf!”

Dragon: “Awwww! Did you guys see that! He gave me a kiss! Isn’t he adorable?”

Sluuurp: “Oh, so when he does it it’s cute.”

With both Sluuurp and Arf Arf lacking a little in levels compared to the rest of the team it was time to do some grinding. Unfortunately, that seemed hard to come by in this particular area. There were Gravelers Self-destructing everywhere and while Sluuurp could take a hit from that I still had to heal him after every battle and it was out of the question for Arf Arf to go up against one, he had the lowest defence on the team. Eventually I went back to the Ice Cave to find some Golbat for Arf Arf to level up with. Everything was going well, the occasional Delibird even popped up and healed Arf Arf for me!

Dragon: “Ah, another Delibird, go on then, what’s the mystery gift? Are you going to heal Arf Arf again?”

Delibird: “Delivery for Arf Arf.” *lays package down on the floor*

Arf Arf: *flops forward and sniffs the package* “Arf?”

The Delibird grinned at me from across the room and flew away. I suddenly had a bad feeling…

Dragon: “Arf Arf, don’t touch-”

BOOM! The package exploded, taking Arf Arf with it. I stared blankly at the space where my adorable little Seel had been just moments ago.

Burd: *Placing a wing around my shoulders* “I’m sorry Dragon, I know you had high hopes for him.”

Zappy: “At least he went out with a bang.”

Everyone looked at Zappy.

Zappy: “What?”

Sleepy ZZZ: “Not cool bro.”

I sighed and went back to the PC to withdraw a smug Pointy and we headed for the gym. I wanted to get a feel for what the trainers were like. Apparently so far the only Dragon type in the game is Dratini. The first trainer used its’ three Dratini to spam Dragon Rage at my team, doing a fair bit of damage, until Sluuurp disabled it and then it resorted to Twister, which wasn’t so bad but we could still have done without. We left the gym feeling a little overwhelmed. We’d have to do some serious grinding for this gym, if those Dratini were the same level as my current team then the leaders’ would be higher. Meanwhile, IRL, blogger Rory from Free Time = Game Time suggested I level up Powafish to evolve him into a Gyarados. It was true, a Gyarados would be an incredible addition to the team but levelling up a Magikarp… I really didn’t want to do it. It would take forever. I went to the PC to see how many levels he had to get on par with the rest of the team anyway, just in case, only to find he was gone! I was then elated to remember that I’d put Powafish in the daycare! Yes! Thank you past self! Powafish, at level 29 was brought into the team (in exchange for a rather relieved Squidward), but where to train him? I couldn’t take him to the self-destructing Gravelers, I tried the Ice Cave for a while but he couldn’t handle any of the Pokémon there by himself… With a shudder I thought back to the days and days of grinding near Ecruteak City. All those Stantler my team had killed for their chunky XP… Powafish would be able to handle them though. We reluctantly flew back there and the rest of the team and I settled down with a game of Poker as Powafish sweated away, tackling Stantler and Pidgeys.

Powafish: *adjusting sweatband* “I am a dragon warrior on the inside, I can do this.” *Aggressively flops into a tackle*

Dragon: *Not glancing up* “That’s it Powafish you can do it… Sluuurp! Stop eating the poker chips!” As we had no chips we were using berries instead.

Sluuurp: *Juice stains round his mouth* “I’m not eating any berries…” His tongue snuck up the other side of the log we were using as a table towards Pointy’s berries who grabbed it and tied it around the log.

Sluuurp: “NNNNNNGGG!!!”

Sleepy ZZZ: *Sliding one of his cards over to Zappy* “Check Mate, bro.”

Zappy: “… What? This is Poker not Chess…”

Sleepy ZZZ: “… Oh… Go Fish…”

Zappy: “Oh Arceus…”

Pointy: *Slamming four Queens onto the log* “Four of a kind, bitches! Pay up!”

Burd: “How do you keep getting Queens?!”

Pointy: “I guess there’s just something about me.”

We all groaned as Pointy dragged all the berries over to join the mountain she already had and adjusted the twig crown she’d made for herself as Queen of Poker.

…: “You guys better hand over those berries… Because I just got a King.”

A shadow loomed over us and we all stared up slowly. A huge Gyarados towered over us…

Zappy: “That… That’s not-”

Burd: “Just let him have this.”

With Powafish now epic we all headed back to Blackthorn. I’d figured out that he’d be able to withstand the self-destruct attacks of the Gravelers now and we got down to training. It was going pretty well… Until it didn’t. While he was easily able to withstand a generic Graveler self-destruct attack apparently a critical one from a Geodude was too much for him. We all watched, unsurprised and numb at this point to be honest, as Powafish was blown far into the sky, Team Rocket style.

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Goodbye Powafish!

Dragon: “Are you kidding me?! I was going to use this TM to teach him Icy Wind as well…”

Pointy and Sluuurp shifted uncomfortably.

Dragon: “Wait… You guys can learn Ice type moves?!”

Pointy: “Well… I mean… Yes…”

Dragon: “Why didn’t you say anything?!”

Sluuurp: *Licking the ground fretfully* “Anything you pin your hopes on for this next gym seems to end up dead at the moment so… We didn’t really want to join attention to ourselves.”

Dragon: “I can’t believe this…”

Next time on Dragon’s Tea Party (Sunday) we take on the 8th gym!

The Team

  • Burd (Fearow)
  • Sleepy ZZZ (Hypno)
  • Pointy (Nidoqueen)
  • Zappy (Magneton)
  • Sluuurp (Lickitung)


  • Burgie (Haunter)
  • Smokey (Koffing)
  • Fritatta (Exeggute)
  • Fritlet (Girafarig)
  • Nommy (Slowpoke)
  • Squidward (Tentacruel)


  • Arf Arf (Seel)
  • Powafish (Gyarados)

Day 12→