Disclaimer: I posted this to /r/pokemon first but I’d like to hear from people who know how immersive VR can be so I’m posting here too. Feel free to leave your own ideas as well, thank you!
So today I’d like to just throw my ideas out there into the stratosphere for whoever is listening. This is my vision for the ultimate Pokémon game that I wish to see from my favorite franchise. The “intro” will be long, so feel free to skip to “The Game” if you ,would just like an idea of how I envision it. Thank you all who do read, these are ideas born out of my passion for the series and I hope my ideas can excite you the way they do to me. Even if it never happens , it’s fun to dream.
First I want to tell you my love for pokemon so you understand where I’m coming from with these ideas. Pokemon has been with me since some of my earliest memories. When I was a kid my brother handed me down his Gameboy Color, with a copy of Pokemon Yellow. I remember not being able to play much, but thinking all the crazy creatures were awesome. Then we got a copy of Gold that I literally could not put down. When Gen 3 came, I was astounded by the colorful graphics, and all the new “edgy” Pokémon designs. The world of Pokemon was amazing to me, and the games were so huge and full in my eyes. It felt like i was really there running through the routes and making Pokémon friends. Watching the show further sucked me in to it all, keeping along with Ash and his adventures made me want to experience them with him and the gang, and made me love the games all the more. Pokemon has always been with me since childhood (through good and bad times) and I will always carry it in my heart.
Now, we all have our different opinions of Pokemon and how their games have been handled. A lot of highs and a lot of lows. But what I will point out is the sheer loyalty of the fans. We have stuck with the series through thick and thin, and while many of us were upset with the most recent games and announcements, I believe what we all want is for Pokémon to return to its glory. The feelings of adventure, bonding with Pokémon, playing with friends, and of course, battling.
What I believe is that perhaps not any time soon, maybe even 10 years from now, that Pokémon should culminate in the worlds largest VRMMO. It would be a game world where everyone with a Nintendo VR could enter, a complete and full immersion into the Pokémon world. It could even be called… Pokémon World. This would be a game that The Pokémon company could continuously update, becoming the ultimate culmination of the games.
Why They Should
Now for anyone who has played VR, you know that the experience is very different from any type of description you can have of it. It’s very hard to put into words how immersive it is until you put one on. A lot of the earliest VR games were not very fun or good looking. But today we are beginning to see the tech and public interest continuously rise. AAA experiences now exist, including games like Half Life:Alyx, Farpoint, and even poets of existing worlds such as Skyrim, or No Mans Sky. Resolutions on earlier models are rough, but with new games continuously getting better looking, the ability for the world to fully immerse you grows exponentially. It will only be a couple years before we start seeing really amazing looking games come out of VR. PSVR2 is rumored to be taking full advantage of the PS5’s output. While Nintendo has always taken their time with technology, I fully expect them to follow suit at least a couple generations down the line and make a foray into true VR. They have already played with it with the LABO and I can only imagine the possibilities of other Nintendo IPs making it to VR (Zelda would be incredible).
We all know that Pokémon is the highest-grossing entertainment media of all time. Yet their products don’t always reflect that. I believe Pokémon World could be the last game that they need to put out, becoming a sort of hub for all things Pokemon. Pokémon is so unbelievably popular that they could make their money back on cosmetic transactions alone (Fortnite already largely does this and they are nowhere near as big, even if they’re huge). This is something they could have the money to fund, and if done right, could bring them ridiculous amounts of money if maintained and updated regularly. The Pokémon Company could undoubtedly make something great if given the tools and the right developers.
Pokémon as a franchise is already insanely popular, but they still have potential to be more. Taking care of animals is something deeply ingrained in human culture, and I think that has always been one of the main pulls. It speaks to our compassion for other creatures. I think for this reason that if TPC truly made a great game, that people from all walks of life would be able to enjoy it immensely. It would blow up much more then Pokémon Go and they could sustain it for years to come, bringing one of the worlds largest communities together all in one game.
Also to the people who may say AR is a better fit, I have to strongly disagree. While it may be a cool tech, it is limited in its ability to fully immerse you in a different world. While it would be cool to see Pokémon pop up around you, the lack of dedicated areas to play together and no real game world, it would be hard to incorporate many actual game features, and would most likely end up as a better version of Pokemon Go, which granted would be cool too, but limited in scope. VR also allows anyone in their home to instantly connect with anyone across the globe, which will make it that much more expansive.
Following will be my roughly laid out ideas for the game, please bear with my organization skills as I attempt to paint a picture for you.
- This may sound familiar, but imagine it from your own eyes. You put on the Vr headset. The game opens up with you waking up in your room. You look around and see pokémon posters on the walls, a desk with a computer, and a Nintendo VR sitting in front of a large TV. You walk over to your computer. The game prompts you to grab the mouse. You do so and it opens up your personal PC. Here you can access your items , and later your pokémon. Your mother calls you from downstairs. You go downstairs where you see your mother letting out Machokes who have helped you move. They tower over you and their biceps are easily bigger then your head. They let out a warm cry and leave. Your mother tells you that Oak is in the lab and is asking for you to come pick a starter!
- This is where it really opens up. You walk outside the sun is gleaming. You have spawned in Pallet Town, but not the one you remember! This is a a fully realized and life-sized town, full of buildings and npcs. A rattata runs by in the woods near you. In the distance you see a farm full of Taurus and an NPC tending to them. You look up and see flocks of pidgey flying overhead. You have stepped into the magical world of Pokémon.
- Graphics can be best described as looking like the anime. A cel-shaded style that is easier to build and it transports you into childhood.
- The next thing you notice is you are not alone! All around you are other, human trainers experiencing this. You are in a instance of Pallet Town, a lobby if you will, hosting 100 players at a time.
- Towns and Pokemon Centers will now act as hubs to invite your friends to group with you in the same lobbys (up to 8 in a group, and from there you can venture into Routes together.
- The next part of your adventure has you run up the hill to Oaks lab. When you get there it is Oak and a few other players (less are allowed in same instances of buildings to avoid crowding). He has 4 pokémon for you to choose from and they are all out of their balls and around the room. Charmander is running around shooting fireball, Bulbasaur is sunbathing by the window next to some flowers, and Squirtle is playing in a sink taking a bath. Pikachu is far off on a bookcase, keeping his distance.
- Oak tells you you can take any of them home with you, but that some may be harder to convince. Here you can walk up to any of them and choose who will join you, but you must hold your hand on them and press a button for 3 seconds. Bulbasuar will wake from his nap and easily accept you as it’s friend. Squirtle will be slippery at first, and squirm around your hand, but will accept you in a moment. Charmander may back away at first, saying “Char char!” angrily and making his fire grow, but if you come up slowly, he will let it relax and trust you. Pikachu will actively run away from you, around the room, forcing you to chase it. It will stop briefly in certain spots but only for 5 seconds , so you need to be on top of it to catch it.
- Whoever you choose, Oak tells you made a wonderful choice and he will love to see you 2 grow as friends. He then says he has one more thing for you. He pulls out a Pokédex and holds it out with a big anime grin. You reach out and grab it, and it lights up in your hand. You can hold it , flip it around, and even open and close its i th your other hand. There are some big buttons on it that let you easily navigate the menus in it.
- Oak tells you that he wants you to fill it. He says all you have to do is hold the Pokédex camera in place to scan the Pokémon for 5 seconds, and it will automatically load the Pokémon’s info.
- This will prove to be very easy for some Pokémon, and much harder for faster , or more rare Pokémon.
- Your adventure now begins. You are completely free to explore Kanto anyway you see fit and can roam all the routes/towns in any order you like.
- Welcome to Pokemon World, Season 1. They have recreated all of Kanto in life size glory. And filled it to the brim with Pokémon. Pokémon of all shapes and sizes roam the world around you, in a manner similar to the Wild area, but much more organic. You can catch all the pokémon you want, you can battle other trainers, or you can go on a quest to build the strongest team and collect all the badges.
- Pokémon bonding is now heavily emphasized. You will always carry with you a Pokeball belt. On it you can bring your team of 6 all over with you. Grab any of the pokeballs and throw them on the ground to have whatever Pokémon you want follow you. They will be fully interactbale, responding to being pet(like Amíe), remarking on things they see (HGSS) and may even lead you to treasures (which ones you find could correspond with your Pokémon’s type).
- Pokémon will now have much more in depth friendship meters. These are now viewable in a stats menu. This new friendship meter will now take much longer to fill (think months) but will award you along the way with friendship perks that can help you in the world and in Combat against wild pokémon.
- Such as : Buddy perk : the first milestone, allows you to find slightly better items. Further on, the Friend perk: allows you to use an “HM” correspondent to your Pokémons build/type . IE, Lapras would let you surf on her, a “strong” pokémon may use rock smash, or a pokémon with blades can use Cut. Even further a Best Friend perk could : let your pokémon lead you to other rarer species it may know where to find, or do more damage against Gym Leaders.
Playing With Others
- In Pokémon World, players from all over will be able to explore Kanto with their friends, teaming up to find and catch pokémon, challenge anyone to a battle (which they can accept or decline).
- While only Kanto will be available in the beggining, large updates to the game will occur in bi/tri-yearly Region additions, in which all players will be given access to “transportation” to the newly Unlocked Regions! For example, you will get a ticket to ride the Goldenrod Train to Johto, or a boat/plane ride to Hoenn. All fully realized with their whole generation of pokémon.
- All adventuring will be at your own will, with set cinematic pieces happening in instances such as Gym battles and Legendary pokémon hunts/battles.
- New players will get to choose which region they would like to start in, from the first town and their starter to the first 8 gyms they would like to challenge.
- Playing with other players will be seamless. Voice chat is by default on but toggleable, and regulated by actual distance to the person talking. You can walk up to anyone and shake hands to start a group, which you can then travel together without being loaded into separate lobbies.
Battling other Trainers
- As for battling, you can challenge anyone. When you are facing them an option will appear to challenge them to a fight and you need to click it and also point at somebody to trigger a challenge. If they accept you will both be prompted to walk apart from each other to glowing circles. These will be where you both stand during the battle. Once in them, a larger rectangle will glow between you and indicates the battle space for your pokémon.
- The game no longer forces you to choose your first pokémon in battle. Simply reach down to your belt and choose whichever one you would like to battle with. They will burst out of the ball ready to go.
- Battles are now played differently. No longer do pokémon stay stationary during battle. They will actively move around the battlefield, and moves will be fully animated and actually hit the other Pokémon and do knockback. Picking a move every turn has been updated as well. Typically you will get 1 move off, but Pokémon will now have battle timers similar to Chrono Trigger and FF7, where you can attack if your bar fills or potentially lose a turn if you wait too long. It will be a mostly forgiving timer. Speed will also play a small role in how fast your attack meter will charge. Each pokémon can still only learn 4 moves, and super/ not very “effectiveness” has been slightly turned down to allow for more strategies and freedom in choosing teams.
- Battles will be for experience, and small amounts of in game money. You will be able to challenge up to 10 trainers a day, except in any Battle Events
- Battle events will be scheduled days in which TPC will instruct everyone to meet in a certain location for a day of battling. Similar to Pokémon Go events.
These will be like festivals/contests in which real life players enter to get high scores and in game prizes. Reaching battle milestones will give you new rewards or temporary perks, such as a special item or a few days boosted experience.
In summary, Pokémon World is simply the world of Pokémon made to truly immerse you, whether that means hanging with friends, catching all the Pokémon, going for the Gym Badges and Pokémon League, or even just becoming best friends with your favorite Pokémon. You can be whatever kind of Trainer you want to be. To me this has always been my true dream when seeing the world of Pokémon, and as for now I can only imagine the pure bliss that could come if it came true. I hope even if these ideas were particularly unique, that they can spark your imagination as well. We all want the best for Pokémon as a series and I truly believe it can get there under proper love and care.
While something like this may never happen, I think think it’s fun to dream, and to brainstorm ideas so that they are out there in the universe, and maybe one day we could see this happen. Thank you all for reading. Feel free to share any of your own ideas as well, I would love to hear them.