I think Pokemon Sword/Shield has the worst story I have ever played through (SPOILERS)

DragonKeeper

Member
Nov 14, 2017
730
Probably not the worst story but yeah, it's bad. The plot happens without you for most of the game then suddenly you get tossed into the middle of it...and it's really low stakes too. Also bad optics. Let's make the environmentalist the bad guy because the energy crisis he wants to avert by inconveniencing sports fans is a thousand years off. Makes me wonder if Gamefreak has any climate change deniers on staff.
 

Kanmurukillua

Member
Jan 28, 2019
2,220
If the game focused solely on the League and kept any sort of legendary shenanigans to the post game, then it'd have a way better plot. Give Marnie, Bede, and Hop more time to breathe, and give them more screen time in the case of the former two. Having your story revolve around you and your rivals' journey to complete the gyms and become champion would be way better than what we actually got, where it rushed through Bede and Marnie's stories.
 

Joey Ravn

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,042
Just because you are the main character doesn't mean you are The Main Character
So, then, if Hau... I mean, Hop... is the main character, what is his arc? Where does his journey take him? How does he improve?

He doesn't. He goes through the cookie-cutter Pokémon rival arc: start at the same time as you, become the Champion (he doesn't, to boot), get beaten to a pulp by you, the actual main character. And, worst of all, he has the gall to be constantly claiming that he's destined to be the best trainer ever, that he's going to be the next Champion, blah blah blah. He comes across as extremely unlikable and annoying. He's an arrogant ass.
 

silver1289s

Member
Mar 8, 2018
173
I can't bring myself to finish the game after the plot dump interrupted my league challenge. It feels completely tacked on and forced. Also, GameFreak really couldn't spare the time and money to properly animate the conversation between Rose and Leon? It felt like I was playing a Gameboy game when it transitioned to a static image.
 

Sub Boss

Member
Nov 14, 2017
12,296
They played that card very well with Sun and Moon. At the end of the day, you were just tagging along in Lillie's journey.

Sword and Shield is no one's story.
So, then, if Hau... I mean, Hop... is the main character, what is his arc? Where does his journey take him? How does he improve?

He doesn't. He goes through the cookie-cutter Pokémon rival arc: start at the same time as you, become the Champion, get beaten to a pulp by you, the actual main character. And, worst of all, he has the gall to be constantly claiming that he's destined to be the best trainer ever, that he's going to be the next Champion, blah blah blah. He comes across as extremely unlikable and annoying. He's an arrogant ass.
hey maybe Pokemon is just a boring world, its ok it doesn't have to be ALL about you 🤭
 

Egida

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,470
I thought I'd get this game, rush through it and sell it, since the game is already at 45€ at Amazon, but I just can't make the effort, I think I'll skip Pokemon this gen.
 
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Pokemaniac

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,270
See lol.

I mostly want to play it because of the story cause some people say it's good and I'm curious. Did they change the characters/story that much in Ultra?
They basically sidelined the main villain of Sun and Moon (who is probably one of the best written villains in a mainline Pokémon game) in favor of just having you fight a rampaging Necrozma.

The Rainbow Rocket post game story that they added is at least decent, but it doesn't make up for ruining the main plot.
 

Jessie

Member
Oct 27, 2017
8,834
When the Macro Cosmos people talk to you the day after you storm Rose Tower and they’re just like “Yeah Oleana is very protective of Rose. Ignore our extremely suspicious behaviour” and Hop is like “OK, we forgive you. You’re good guys because you say you are!”

And then two minutes later they turn out to be the bad guys, again.

I’m still in shock over the Rose Tower fakeout. I’m praying they do a third version so they can delete that entire sequence of events.
 

Kyzer

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,774
Realized really late that Bede was using a copperajah to destroy ruins, did they explicitly mention why or is it implied to be Rose's Pokemon (aka he was in on it)
 

Stat

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,505
So, then, if Hau... I mean, Hop... is the main character, what is his arc? Where does his journey take him? How does he improve?

He doesn't. He goes through the cookie-cutter Pokémon rival arc: start at the same time as you, become the Champion (he doesn't, to boot), get beaten to a pulp by you, the actual main character. And, worst of all, he has the gall to be constantly claiming that he's destined to be the best trainer ever, that he's going to be the next Champion, blah blah blah. He comes across as extremely unlikable and annoying. He's an arrogant ass.
I do always laugh that even the other NPCs - its like I've beaten you 5 times in a row with 1 move and 1 Pokemon, why is this going to be any different?
 

Illusion

Member
Oct 27, 2017
6,564
But Sword/Shield does have a bad and poorly told story, it’s just primarily dumped at the very end of the game with lore dumps at several major cities.

Sword/Shield would have been much better without a story.
It would had been refreshing if the game just focused on the Pokemon tournament with no evil chairman and nothing about the legendaries other then the professor in training's research on the matter.

Then boom post game your the champion and you're requested to help investigate the Pokemon you saw in the woods. And the post game is the chairman is a huge capitalist who bought out the entire competition and made Pokemon Tournaments as they are now to make passionate fans to allow him to make huge mergers. Slowly taking over politics, business, and economy through fandom. With the intent of taking over the world with legendary Pokemon as his military.
 

Joey Ravn

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,042
hey maybe Pokemon is just a boring world, its ok it doesn't have to be ALL about you 🤭
What a take. I have no problem with not being the "Chosen PokéTrainer One" in the game. In fact, I'd welcome it. I've come to appreciate USuMo's change of formula, even if I don't feel the trials ended up being that good and, in the end, still being about you become the best ever. I wouldn't mind having a game in which you are actually just another trainer, or even the sidekick/rival to the actual main character. GSC somewhat felt like that during some parts: you tagged along Lance, who absolutely kicked everyone's asses, and lived in the shadow of the actual best trainer, Red.

That's definitely not what SwSh is doing. It's clearly that you are the main character who's doing all the heavy lifting in the story, and yet Hop is constantly inserting himself into the narrative as if he had earned that position. And he hasn't. I loathe every time I see him waiting for me down the road. I know he's going to say something stupid, start a battle, yell some more stupidly obvious statements, then inevitably lose. At least with other rivals you didn't see them coming from a mile away. Remember in RBY when you were on the SS Anne, heading towards the Captain? Blue comes out of the, eh, blue, challenges you, loses, smells you later. Direct, to the point and, most importantly, unexpected.
 

PancakeFlip

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,371
It's not that bad though? It's honestly just not even there.
It is, in none of the other Pokemon games have you gotten into a pointless Pokemon battle with the main villain. Logically you can literally skip the fight with Rose and go help Leon with the legendary Pokemon, Rose is not blocking your bath and is in a detour location towards the actual conflict. The story just needs you to go fight him for some reason.
 

Jessie

Member
Oct 27, 2017
8,834
I wish the story was nonexistent, but it's definitely there. The championship was interrupted (twice!) for the sake of the story. It's hard to ignore a wrecking ball destroying the game's pacing in the final act.
 

Larrikin

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,264
But Sword/Shield does have a bad and poorly told story, it’s just primarily dumped at the very end of the game with lore dumps at several major cities.

Sword/Shield would have been much better without a story.
It has the good graces to stay out of your way. Its far from bad, just uneventful and small.
 

Starlatine

Member
Oct 28, 2017
11,636
I wish the story was nonexistent, but it's definitely there. The championship was interrupted (twice!) for the sake of the story. It's hard to ignore a wrecking ball destroying the game's pacing in the final act.
Yeah, makes me wonder real hard what the people saying "there's no story lol" or "they dont want you to focus on it" are talking about cause it surely isnt SWSH. Just because its incredibly poorly paced with a sprinkle in the beginning, nothing in the middle and everything cramped in the final third doesnt mean that it isnt there, and the way the game CONSTANTLY interrupt you to see these things certainly shows they wanted you to pay attention alright. It's okay to like the game and think the story is downright stupid. Don't people love Dragon's Dogma here too?
 

BinaryPork

Member
Oct 31, 2017
293
It has the good graces to stay out of your way. Its far from bad, just uneventful and small.
I’ve been thinking about it more and I don’t think it really stays out of your way at all, not even the main regional plot. Every town or route near a town either has a dull Sonia lore dump for the dogs/Galar, has something that happens off screen (best represented by the explosion in Hammerlocke or the dynamax attack late in the story), or advances the rival subplots. Someone is stopping you from completing the league challenge all the time, regardless of whether it’s the main plot or a more prominent subplot. It’s the worst parts of previous stories in the series simultaneously combined with little main story.

The main plot becomes more intrusive toward the end of the game, overtaking the subplots. Rose’s plot interrupts the league twice and leading to one of the worst climaxes in the franchise. Black/White handled this trope a lot better and only interrupted the league once right before the champion. It’s just that most of the time you’re dealing with Hop and occasionally dealing with Bede or Marnie.

It’s difficult to explain how there’s both relatively little story and too much story outside of calling it “uneven pacing.” I personally found it bad, but get that others liked it.
 

ILikeFeet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
25,653
It’s difficult to explain how there’s both relatively little story and too much story outside of calling it “uneven pacing.” I personally found it bad, but get that others liked it.
I find it hard to find something positive to say about this. for all of the SunMoon method's faults (which this game is a retread of, but slightly better), it handled story much better in that it followed a story cycle well. even XY did it. SwordShield didn't even do that. it goes way beyond "bad pacing". this game threw out basic storytelling conventions only to make a mess of what was left.

the more I think about it, this game parallels Final Fantasy 15 a lot in that respect. while XY resembles FF13 (poor story and characters, but at least the storytelling conventions were all present)
 

PancakeFlip

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,371
I think I would have liked the story a bit better if it was altered slightly with Hop.

Hop becomes more and more spiteful of you, begins to loathe you for beating him over and over. He comes to the conclusion that he needs more power so he starts desperately looking into the legendary Pokemon, he find out about the wishing star thing from Bede which leads him to look into how Galar is run off the power of this legendary Pokemon.

He eventually breaks into the power area to awaken Eternatus and causes the crisis instead of Rose, that way the off screen BS can stay but there can actually be some suspense caused from it. You face off against a desperate insane broken Hop, as he says he's finally found the power to beat you and you won't get in his way of being Galar Champion any longer, "a worthy rival needs a worthy showdown". After you beat him, Eternatus goes berserk and it plays out pretty much the same with Hop in fear, and in realizing he does not have the skills to face it alone, attempts to atone by helping you out in the battle. Him committing a "crime" shouldn't be a major issue since they've already had a kid doing that with Silver in G/S, and I believe in BW2 the villain actually attempts to kill you with the legendary. Though this edit is not much better, it'd be more entertaining imo, and I'd be a BIT more invested in the story.
 
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ILikeFeet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
25,653
I think I would have liked the story a bit better if it was altered slightly with Hop.

Hop becomes more and more spiteful of you, begins to loathe you for beating him over and over. He comes to the conclusion that he needs more power so he starts desperately looking into the legendary Pokemon, he find out about the wishing star thing from Bede which leads him to look into how Galar is run off the power of this legendary Pokemon.

He eventually breaks into the power area to awaken Eternatus and causes the crisis instead of Rose, that way the off screen BS can stay but there can actually be some suspense caused from it. You face off against a desperate insane broken Hop, as he says he's finally found the power to beat you and you won't get in his way of being Galar Champion any longer, "a worthy rival needs a worthy showdown". After you beat him, Eternatus goes berserk and it plays out pretty much the same with Hop in fear, and in realizing he does not have the skills to face it alone, attempts to atone by helping you out in the battle. Him committing a "crime" shouldn't be a major issue since they've already had a kid doing that with Silver in G/S, and I believe in BW2 the villain actually attempts to kill you with the legendary. Though this edit is not much better, it'd be more entertaining imo, and I'd be a BIT more invested in the story.
Last thing they'll do is make a kid a villain. And Bede is more worthy of doing all that shit since he has blind devotion for Rose that doesn't really mean anything right now

after finding out about Rose's plan, it made that shit with Bede all the more dumber. And its not like it was played off with "I never told him to do this" plausible deniability. It just comes out of nowhere
 

Jessie

Member
Oct 27, 2017
8,834
Final Fantasy XV is a good comparison. You can see the storyboard falling apart before your very eyes.

The story isn’t “bad” in the traditional sense. It’s clearly pieced together from bits of what Game Freak wanted to achieve, but they were too crunched for time to complete.

 

PancakeFlip

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,371
Last thing they'll do is make a kid a villain. And Bede is more worthy of doing all that shit since he has blind devotion for Rose that doesn't really mean anything right now

after finding out about Rose's plan, it made that shit with Bede all the more dumber. And its not like it was played off with "I never told him to do this" plausible deniability. It just comes out of nowhere
I already mentioned they had Silver commit a crime in G/S, it shouldn’t be a problem in that sense. Though they’ve done a tone shift when they went 3D.

I don’t think Bede would go that far honestly, and he doesn’t seem interested in actually being Champion or put much stock into your face offs with him, he just had bad luck and you happen to be there every time it triggered. He’s more interested in pleasing Rose than being Champion, which is why most of his focus was on the wishing stars than what he was doing in the challenge.
 
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Splader

Splader

Member
Feb 12, 2018
1,949
Sooo, I finished the post game plot, and well... at least it's not any worse? It had some really fun battles (that last battle with Hop was great!) but the two new characters were, well, terrible. Like completely and utterly terrible. Their actions also didn't make any sense at all lol.

But eh, it's done and over with now.
 

ILikeFeet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
25,653
I already mentioned they had Silver commit a crime in G/S, it shouldn’t be a problem in that sense. Though they’ve done a tone shift when they went 3D.

I don’t think Bede would go that far honestly, and he doesn’t seem interested in actually being Champion or put much stock into your face offs with him, he just had bad luck and you happen to be there every time it triggered. He’s more interested in pleasing Rose than being Champion, which is why most of his focus was on the wishing stars than what he was doing in the challenge.
Silver committed a crime, but not go so far as to damn near destroy the world. I doubt GF would let a kid go that far. At least with Bede, you can have him be manipulated by Rose. That would give Bede an out and being taken up as an apprentice as a nice bit of redemption
 

Shahadan

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,669
Offensively bad, and it keeps coming and coming despite fitting entirely on a post it cut in half
 

Thera

Member
Feb 28, 2019
1,983
I was already irritated over the whole "hey you do your kid stuff we'll do the important stuff" crap the game kept feeding you
Errrr, I think the opposite is crap. We have a big list of adults realiable gym leader and a champion, but let the random kid save the world was pure BS in past games (R/B not included).
Have you ever played XY though? While SwSh story is certainly bad (just character arcs are decent), XY story is probably the worst one I've seen in a rpg.
Oh the XY story, that was terrible.
 

ILikeFeet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
25,653
Errrr, I think the opposite is crap. We have a big list of adults realiable gym leader and a champion, but let the random kid save the world was pure BS in past games (R/B not included).
RB is definitely included. The mafia seized a town and nobody does shit except a 10 year old. Not even the gym leader of the seized town
 
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Splader

Splader

Member
Feb 12, 2018
1,949
Errrr, I think the opposite is crap. We have a big list of adults realiable gym leader and a champion, but let the random kid save the world was pure BS in past games (R/B not included).

Oh the XY story, that was terrible.
It's a video game though. I don't really want or need it to be realistic in those elements.
Pretending my character is 15 is a lot better than being shafted constantly because other people are taking care of it.
And even then, they end up having to rely on us, the 10 year kid, to save the world. Sooo what was different other than them brushing you away until they suddenly had a use for you?
 

Siggy-P

Avenger
Mar 18, 2018
6,354
Final Fantasy XV is a good comparison. You can see the storyboard falling apart before your very eyes.

The story isn’t “bad” in the traditional sense. It’s clearly pieced together from bits of what Game Freak wanted to achieve, but they were too crunched for time to complete.

I vividly remember the scene of Final Fantasy XV in the last few chapters were they're on the train and someone casually mentions that the Empire or whatever is killing old god's lik it's public knowledge and has been for the duration of the story.

It's like, "oh okay, so only now we finally get some vague sort of context for the enemy faction that apparently everybody and their dog knows trivially."
 

PancakeFlip

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,371
Silver committed a crime, but not go so far as to damn near destroy the world. I doubt GF would let a kid go that far. At least with Bede, you can have him be manipulated by Rose. That would give Bede an out and being taken up as an apprentice as a nice bit of redemption
That's true.

Actually, I'm not sure what they were going for with Bede. When he was discarded, he actually didn't seem too bent out of shape over it. When you meet up with him again right before he gets taken under Opal, he doesn't seem too upset or spiteful towards you (actually a bit encouraging), from what I remember he was just planning to try to regain Rose's approval and not even in a very desperate way.

The reason I chose Hop over Bede (and I did think about Bede), was that Bede actually remained pretty level headed despite the situations he was placed in. Even in the mural incident, his reasoning was still arguably sound. Hop seemed more diluted to me and it seemed like his entire character was to be Champion, and you basically just destroyed it over and over. You could see it frustrating him in after battle animations, but I mainly chose him because it's something they actually haven't done and would be a funny twist on the "friendly rival" who actually starts getting insanely envious.
 
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Wil Grieve

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,302
Its fucking terrible. I heard pokemon black has a good story and I just cant believe it so im playing it
People say that. I disagree entirely. I will say though that the evil team does have a much more interesting motivation than most. Way cooler than "I want to flood the earth, I want to make all the volcanos erupt, I want to literally destroy space and time, I want to kill all humans"
 

Astrogamer

Member
Oct 25, 2017
344
Sword and Shield does a weird choice in plot in that prioritizes the league plot over the ancient legend/evil team plot. The closest in plot resemblance is Sun & Moon's focus on the Island Challenge but even that gets pushed to the wayside starting with the third island and you just do trials with no buildup and lacking in character (the 4th kahuna battle in particular is just a roadblock). In most Pokemon games, you are just doing Gym battles because that is what you need to do to progress. Sword & Shield on the other hand tries to make the story about the league challenge itself giving you rivals that are only about the league challenge and making most of the gyms a little story with active relationships between them. The evil team plot is almost as weak as XY's in exchange but that doesn't really make a bad story. Like Hop not challenging you for a while after losing to Bede and then changing almost his entire team is very interesting story telling without explicitly saying it along with the shift in you beating him to the gyms whereas it was him beating gyms before you in the beginning of the game.
 
Oct 27, 2017
15,547
Vastly prefer this to Sun/Moon. No story >>>>>>> bad and poorly told story.
Except this has a story and it's even worst. People need to stop equating their ability to ignore the story with it simply not being there. Drowning it out because it's terrible doesn't mean it was nonexistent. It's just further evidence of how terribly written and paced it was
 

Squid Bunny

Member
Jun 11, 2018
1,924
I mean, Eternal Sonata exists, so I disagree with the thread title outright.

That said, it seems to me the SwSh never really left the pre-planning stage?
 

Xiaomi

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,965
I didn't understand the tower mission. I loved the Punk Rock aspect to it, but why did the mere fact that Rose would have a meeting with Leon cause such a reaction? And then after breaking into an office tower and rightfully being pursued by security guards because you haven't been invited to the meeting, Leon just tells Rose "Aight I'mma head out," and Rose freely lets him leave. What was that? Why did I fight all those people?
 

PancakeFlip

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,371
I didn't understand the tower mission. I loved the Punk Rock aspect to it, but why did the mere fact that Rose would have a meeting with Leon cause such a reaction? And then after breaking into an office tower and rightfully being pursued by security guards because you haven't been invited to the meeting, Leon just tells Rose "Aight I'mma head out," and Rose freely lets him leave. What was that? Why did I fight all those people?
I had the EXACT same reaction, it literally makes no sense. Like nothing in XY compared to the stupidity of that story beat.
 

ILikeFeet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
25,653
I didn't understand the tower mission. I loved the Punk Rock aspect to it, but why did the mere fact that Rose would have a meeting with Leon cause such a reaction? And then after breaking into an office tower and rightfully being pursued by security guards because you haven't been invited to the meeting, Leon just tells Rose "Aight I'mma head out," and Rose freely lets him leave. What was that? Why did I fight all those people?
it's like they had post-it notes of plot details, but they scrambled to get a game out and just too the most interesting bits
 

Rosebud

Member
Apr 16, 2018
6,901
Btw, people compain about the friendly rivals, but now we don't have bad teams anymore.

Team Skull was nice, but Yell...