Luigi’s Mansion 3 is not only the best game by Next Level Games to date, but also one of the best games currently available on Nintendo Switch along with Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Galaxy, and can easily be a candidate for 2019 game of the year.
New Super Lucky’s Tale improves many things from the original, but it also does some things worse. It’s a nice platformer, quite enjoyable on Nintendo’s hybrid console, so give it a try if you like the genre.
Honestly, since I'm being forced to choose over a real next-gen Pokemon experience or no Pokemon at all? I'll take it. I've enjoyed my time with Sword and Shield a lot so far, even if it's lacking in huge surprises.
But the changes that are here — a larger, more detailed world and a streamlined structure that cuts out the annoying bits — are enough to make this the ideal iteration of the concept to date. The moments when I felt frustrated or bored in past games simply don’t exist in Sword and Shield. It’s one big adventure.
The surprise in Sword and Shield is that I’m still finding things that surprise me, even after putting in so many hours. It’s in how Game Freak has made a linear game feel so much less linear. Make no mistake, Sword and Shield is not an open-world game. There are limitations. But the game’s designed for me not to notice them, and mostly, I don’t.
The magic of Pokémon is that it lets you tap into a sense of wonder that becomes more and more difficult to access as an adult. Sword and Shield do that more successfully than any Pokémon release has in years. It won’t be everything to everyone, and it will not make everyone happy. I’m not sure it needs to. It’s a portal to a new world. And it definitely has something for Pokémon’s core audience: everyone in the entire world.
The jump to a platform of greater power such as Nintendo Switch seems to have played against Game Freak, but there is no denying that there are very good ideas and much needed changes. And, although it needs work, the Wild Area firmly establishes the foundation of the future of Pokémon.
I do think Sword and Shield are good entries for anyone who got into Pokémon through Go and Let’s Go and is looking for something a bit more difficult and larger in scale. Seasoned players can still enjoy the new monsters and appreciate the game’s story mode while it lasts (I cleared the main story in around 35 hours). It’s just too bad that, for longtime players, what’s missing is probably going to overshadow everything that’s here.
Pokémon Sword and Shield are not bad games. But fun character arcs and inventive, creative designs of new ‘mon are often offset by poor pacing and restrictive world design. The world of Galar is charming, and is a Pokémon interpretation of Britain I’ve dreamed of since I was a kid, but between gating what Pokémon you can catch behind Gym Badges, some half-baked route/City designs and a modest amount of post-game content, Sword and Shield can only be called ‘good’ Pokémon games… not ‘great’ ones.
Pokemon Sword & Shield is all too often a bit disappointing, and in some places actually feels a little unfinished, but it also fully provides that warm, fuzzy feeling that one expects from the series. Crucially, even through frustration, never once did I think about putting it down, which is to its credit.
Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, the first real original duo of the main series on Switch, are not to Pokémon what Breath of the Wild is to The Legend of Zelda, namely a bold upheaval of fundamentals to establish a formula reinvented for coming years. With these new games Pokémon, Game Freak proceeds as usual in the evolution of the series, small touches, all the more welcome this time they seem absolutely necessary today, like the boxes PC accessible everywhere. Without major disruption but with significant improvements, in terms of game comfort mainly, and while some will probably deplore the reduced number of Pokémon referenced base in the Pokédex Galar, new region that enjoys a care of atmosphere and staging undeniable, Pokémon remains faithful to its formula still winning for over twenty years, at the risk of missing the evolutionary step offered and hoped for by its convergence with the so popular Nintendo Switch. That said, the proposal is still effective for those for whom risk taking is secondary and of course the newcomers, especially children, the first public concerned and whose generations succeed and always succumb to the charms of those offered over the years by Pokémon.
The first new-generation Pokémon game to release on a proper home console does not disappoint. New features like Dynamaxing and the Wild Area are fun additions that make the experience of becoming a Pokémon champion still feel fresh. It’s just a shame that Game Freak didn’t lean into the new features more than they did.
Pokémon Sword and Shield succeed in bringing some new ideas to the table, but they’re also somewhat guilty of not pushing things far enough. What’s done right is done right, but what’s done wrong feels like it’s come from a decade-old design document. There are moments contained within that are best the series has ever been, but this joy is at times spoiled by contrasting moments that left us disappointed and did not match up to the rest of what the rest of these games can offer. What we've got here is an experience full of highs and lows, from the unadulterated wonder and joy of seeing a brand-new Pokémon in a stadium full of cheering crowds, to the monotonous and dragged-out dialogue we just wanted to skip.
Sword and Shield are a lot of fun and, at the same time, it’s also a disappointing evolution of the series. The core gameplay still works great, but Game Freak needs to listen to the constructive feedback and live up to the expectations of the franchise.
Pokémon Sword and Shield bring some new ideas and improvements, but we miss more innovation and more and better endgame contents. You'll enjoy exploring the new Galar Region and catching the new and amazing Pokémon, but the Pokémon RPG for Nintendo Switch feels like a missed opportunity to do something big.