As I boot up the game, ready to tackle Route 3, I think to myself "Why is it so dark? It's 2 in the aftern- oh." And with that I adjust the time on my DS forward 12 hours. Although the events of this update occurred in the day, most of this LP takes place at night, when I play- I have no idea if that matters at all in this game (it was a big deal in Gen II, affecting the rates at which certain Pokemon appeared,) though I suspect it doesn't.
As long as I'm on the subject, I will mention that Pokemon Black has introduced the concept of seasons- each season corresponds to a real life month, and June is Summer. No, I don't know how that affects anything- probably some encounter rates are skewed by season, and certain random items are probably available during certain seasons and not others. It is Summer
right now, and the days will only grow shorter- an all too appropriate theme.
I now return you to your LP already in progress.
The first thing that strikes me about Route 3 is the road- it is made of asphalt. Although I suppose the big official roads in Gen I were supposed to be asphalt, due to graphical limitations they were white. Here, though, I can practically see an army of Trainers standing guard over some construction workers as they toil to burn and flatten the grassy areas, and make them fit for human traffic. This could very well be the Autobahn of the Pokemon world right here.
Well, maybe not so much. The asphalt quickly turns back to dirt after half a dozen steps- in my minds eye, those guardian Trainers are beaten back by the sheer number of puppies and kittens pouring from the grass, unable to defend the steamrollers and road crews who are swarmed under by the attacking Pokemon.
Oooh, a shiny!
In need of new Pokemon, I check out the Pokemon Day Care at the beginning of the route- no freebies here. Since I can see tall grass a bit farther along the road, I head back down the path. To proceed, I must fight my first double battle, which while uninteresting bears mentioning since the mechanic comes up in the future. A double battle is a new (newer than Gen II, anyway) wrinkle where each side sends out 2 Pokemon at once. In this case, I'm fighting a pair of twins- they each have a Purrloin, and I've got Marvin and Pompey.
At first blush, this is pretty cool- the extra Pokemon adds an additional element of strategy, and I know Pokemon can learn moves that help them out in double battles. The problem is that I am suddenly struck by the chivalry
my opponents show to me, and I to them by fighting single combat duels. Since you can apparently deploy multiple Pokemon at once, you'd think it would come up more, especially when dealing with honorless hooligans like Team Plasma. Worse than that, perhaps, is how vulnerable it can make your Pokemon as your opponents gang up on one of them- I'm willing to bet that at least one of my Pokemon dies in a double battle.
But anywho, after a brief run back to the Pokecenter I'm finally ready to hit the tall grass and find a new best friend.
Hey, wait up!
Well hello there, Sir Cheren! How does it feel to be part of the aristocracy?
Actually, Monk, it feels rather better than I had expected. Er, is your title Sir or Lord now?
Well, Lord is my inherited title as the presumptive heir to the Barony of Nuvema Town. Sir is the title I hold in my own right, as holder of the Trio Badge, same as you. They're equal enough that it depends on the context- as one trainer to another, Sir would be appropriate.
Same as me, eh? So, Sir Monk, if we're finally equals, then you wouldn't be averse to a Pokemon Battle then?
One Badge and suddenly you're good enough to take me on? Let's see what you've got, then!
Show'm what we've got, Snivy!
[With pleasure, old bean.]
Bring the heat, Pompey!
[I LOVE THE HEAT!]
*Vine Whip* *Growth* *Growth* *Growth* *Growth*
*Bite* *Bite* *Bite* *Bite* *Bite*
He just keeps raising his special attack... wait, I've seen this tactic before. Striaton Gym, when Mojo Jojo...
*VINE WHIP* *CRITICAL HIT*
[I LOVE DYING!]
NOOOOOOO! POMPEY! Oh, Marvin will be devastated, they had such a nice Odd Couple thing going on.
Ha! Mine is a superior intellect!
You lack experience, and discipline. Marvin, I think that its time to cut
him down to size!
[I hate you for that.] *Cut*
Well, I've still got my Purrloin-
Blast! We both have the Trio Badge, why are you still stronger than me?
Because I am born to it, as part of my noble heritage, and you are not.
Says the man with a 66% mortality rate.
I just kicked your ass, you don't get to gloat. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to catch another Pokemon befo-
Stop that thief!
Nyuck Nyuck Nyuck! You'll never catch me, and this Pokemon will be free!
Oh what now.
That Plasma Grunt stole this little girl's Pokemon!
What kind of Pokemon was it?
It was a Pansear, sir. My daddy got it for me.
Listen, you don't really want that back. Trust me. Tell your Dad to get you a puppy or a kitty or something.
But I already named him Mr. Fluffles!
Monk, they broke the law- I thought that was a thing with you.
Yeah, sure, fine, I'll get that inbred orangutan back for you.
I'm going with you, Monk!
You go ahead, I've gotta fill out the ranks a bit.
About three steps later...
*Wild Patrat Appeared!*
Gah! Well, beggars can't be choosers, I suppose.
Scout Pokemon? That makes you what, some kind of psychotic meerkat? Welcome to the team, Timon
[No worries, for the rest of your days!]
Timon has a hardy nature (whatever that means,) and likes to thrash about. Ability: Keen Eye- Other Pokemon can't lower its accuracy. Handy, especially since the Purrloins I've been facing have begun spamming Sand Attack. After a little grinding (i.e one level) I deem him fit to fight Plasma, and I head off further down the path.
The path taken by Plasma curves north, where it runs into Wellspring Cave. Cheren is waiting for me.
They ran into this cave! Are your Pokemon ready to take them on?
Sure are- let's do this.
Inside the cave, a pair of Plasma Grunts stand with their catch.
You followed us? Why? That child cannot use this Pokemon to its full potential- that makes it sad! [game dialogue]
Yeah, something tells me the five year old can more than tap the full potential of that particular Pokemon. As holder of the Trio Badge, I'm here to dispense some justice- you can either turn yourself in for punishment and give the Pokemon back, or I can thrash you soundly and then take
the Pokemon back.
Ha! I'd like to see you try!
I was rather hoping you'd say that.
[HAKUNA MATATA BITCHES!]
What!?! How could I lose when I have right on my side?
Well for one thing, your Patrat is pretty lame. I just caught mine about five minutes ago, and it soundly thrashed yours. You may have been better off with the dumb monkey you stole, and that is saying something. Speaking of, I'll be taking that back now.
Not so fast! These mooks may have been dumb enough to fight each of you one on one, but my comrade and I are not so dumb.
Don't worry Monk, I've got your back.
*VINE WHIP SPAM*
NO! PLASMAAAAAAAAAAAAA! [yes, every plasma encounter thus far has ended with them screaming this]
Alright, enough with the shouting. Return the Pokemon to me and get out of here.
We won't forget this!
I'll return this Pokemon to that little girl, Monk!
Right behind ya, Cher-
*Wild Woobat Appeared!*
SWEET MOTHER OF MEW KILL IT WITH FIRE KILL IT WITH FIRE
IT'S PSYCHIC! CATCHITCATCHITCATCHITCATCHIT
Wait, from its nose?
Psychic and Flying? There's a combination I can get behind! Welcome aboard, Cletus
Cletus has an Impish nature, and scatters things often just like poor ol' Pompey did. The flying type moves give me an edge on Snivy, and the psychic type moves are just awesome. Ability- Klutz: Pokemon can't use any held items. Well, they had to balance the awesome in some way other than aesthetically. Exiting the cave, I return to where Bianca waits with the little girl- Cheren is nowhere to be found.
Thanks for getting Mr. Fluffles back, mister! Here, have these balls!
Oooh, heal balls! They heal the Pokemon you catch!
That seems marginally useful, but thanks anyway.
At this point, I walk back to catch up on areas I skipped past due to health concerns and the demands of plot, in order to get all the items and bring my new Pokemon up to speed. In the Dreamyard, I regret anew my acceptance of Mojo Jojo as I am assaulted by Dark-type Purrloins left and right. I snag some uninteresting items- from my new vantage point, I can see downward stairs a bit off to the east, confirming suspicions that I'll be back here at some point. Hilariously, the only thing preventing me from skipping ahead in the plot is some oil drums and the aforementioned traffic cone.
That barrier is more daunting than the Himalayas
Next on the agenda is the Day Care. I ducked my head into the Poke Day Care, but next door to it is a regular human day care with children and child accessories everywhere. Inside, a nurse heals my Pokemon for me, same as if this were a Pokecenter- wish I had checked this before fighting Cheren/Plasma. I spend some time chatting with the children as they play.
Rarrr! I run, you chase me? You run, I chase you? Change your perspective, and reality changes.
That... is rather profound, come to think of it. What kind of children are these?
Boys are icky!
That's more like it.
Outside, there is a large playground area guarded by a Nursery Aide.
A Pokemon fight? Sure, I'm game- go Munna!
Wait, Munna? As in the super rare, sole source of Dream Mist Munna?
I hate this world and all who dwell within it.
A SHORT BATTLE LATER
Good match! Be careful if you go out to the playground- some of the kids are restless, and will pester you into Pokemon battles!
Sorry, all I heard was "easy XP"
COME AT ME BRO!
Merciful Mew! What kind of day care is this, Spartan Preschool?
Thanks to the fine folks over at Slackerz
Finally, I head back to Wellspring Cave to finish up exploring there. Turns out that the whole thing is full of water, so I don't know where Plasma was going to retreat to- maybe they have a boat or something somewhere. I do find a TM containing Thief, not that I'm likely to use it.
With that, I've caught up on my side quests. All that is left is to proceed onward, to the next town and the next gym- after taking care of one last thing.
NEXT TIME: Nacrene City
Criticism, Comments, Suggestions welcome as always
Nuvema Town- "Marvin", Oshawott
Route 1- XXX
Accumula Town- ??
Route 2- "Pompey", Lillipup 6-12
Striaton City- ??
Dreamyard- "Mojo Jojo", Pansear lvls 10-12
Route 3- Timon, Patrat
Wellspring Cave- Cletus, Woobat
Nacrene City- ??
Pinwheel Forest- ??