Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon captures the player with its amazing gameplay
Pokémon fans can rejoice knowing that the latest game in the Pokémon franchise, Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, is not a disappointment. Game Freak has truly outdone itself this time in Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon with its extremely immersive storytelling and difficult challenges.
The game starts out as it always has in previous Pokémon games, with plenty of tutorial. It would have been nice if there was a way to tell the game that you know what you’re doing and don’t need to learn how to throw a pokeball for the tenth time. That being said, there are a lot of new additions in Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon that even long-time Pokémon players will need to learn about, and a little bit of tutorial isn’t always bad.
Early on, the game is pretty much like its previous version, Pokémon Sun and Moon, with little changes along the way. We meet the Ultra Recon Squad, a duo from an alternate dimension that we know nothing about. Running into the squad was a small but pleasant highlight for me as they were a mysterious duo and I wanted to know more about them. A minigame called Mantine Surf was added to the game and boy, is it helpful. Through mantine surfing, currency known as Beach Points (BP) can be earned which is later used in the endgame Battle Tree.
Another addition in Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon was the Battle Agency. In the Battle Agency, you can use battle ready Pokémon and fight against other trainers. The first Pokémon you choose is random, but the second and third Pokémon come from people whom you’ve interacted with in the Festival Plaza. It gave me a chance to experience fighting with Pokémon I’ve never trained before and was a new refreshing experience.
One of the bigger and better changes to the game was the ability to travel to different dimensions through Ultra Wormholes. By riding a Legendary Pokémon in Ultra Space, you can find Ultra Wormholes that can lead you to find new Pokémon in the Alola Region or even super-rare Legendary Pokémon.
Compared to the previous Pokémon games, Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon was quite the challenge. The A.I. of the trainers were much smarter, going for a tackle when you’re weak rather than using growl. At one point, I had to level my Pokémon to the point where they wouldn’t listen to me in order to not be one-shot by a super strong Pokémon. The challenges presented in the game were harder as well. I found that I needed to actually think about where to harvest berries in Mallow’s trial rather than wandering around aimlessly to locate the food.
Although the game certainly changed a lot from Pokémon Sun and Moon, I don’t want to exaggerate the amount of changes made. Other than the occasional run-ins with the Ultra Recon Squad, the game didn’t really have that much of a change in plot until the climax about 25 hours in. Although I was slightly disappointed by the many similarities it had with Sun and Moon, once the changes happened, it was worth it. The plot was much better in Ultra Sun and Ultra Sun compared to Sun and Moon, being much more immersive and cohesive.
Once you’ve completed the main storyline of the game, there is a post-game storyline in which you face off against Team Rainbow Rocket, a villainous organization composed of all of the team leaders from previous generations. Fighting against Team Rainbow Rocket gave me a sense of nostalgia and reminded me of all of the previous games and how far Pokémon has gone throughout its years. Overall I give Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon a rating of 4.5 out of 5.