Within the center of the Galar region lies the Wild Area, where pokémon roam in a manner familiar to gamers who played Pokémon: Let’s Go. Three types of pokémon encounter await players there, including traditional random encounters in long grass and visible pokémon moving about for players to walk into. The third type of encounter is marked by an exclamation point in the world. Players may either sneak around these to avoid them entirely, or move into them to trigger an encounter with a rarer type of pokémon.
While the above might not seem to deviate too far from the norm, the Wild Area also contains wild pokémon of a far greater level than usually available in the early game. Pokémon five times the player’s level wander the Wild Area, some of which might even be found in their second or third stage of evolution. This offers an intriguing challenge to all players, from those new to the Pokémon franchise and long-term, die hard fans.
In addition to higher-level pokémon, the Wild Area also contains “very strong looking” pokémon, surrounded by a dim, yellow glow. These pokémon have greater than usual stats, as well as special movesets. Players can also enter Raid Battles in the Wild Area, taking on Dynamax pokémon by themselves or with up to three other players. Captured raid pokémon have a chance to become Gigantamax Pokémon, which increases their size and gives them new forms.
With many Pokémon fans left dissatisfied over Pokémon: Let’s Go, the challenges available to gamers within the Wild Area may represent the attentiveness of the Game Freak development team to player feedback. Overleveled pokémon inflicting status effects and Raid Battle pokémon stomping players into the ground offers challenge over simplicity, and a sense of accomplishment with each battle won.
Gamers can look forward to Pokémon Sword And Shield releasing on November 15, 2019 for the Nintendo Switch, and follow Gaming Instincts on Facebook and Twitter for updates.