It’s not over until the Jigglypuff sings.
When Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee!, were first revealed, the fan base was divided. Not everyone was keen to revisit Kanto and some especially disliked the simplified approach it took, but I was in love with it from the outset. I knew it was a game I needed in my life and by the time it actually arrived, it was a game I very much needed, as it became something of a saving grace and nostalgia trip, during a time in my life when things looked very dark.
Fast forward to 2021, things are not as dark as they once were and Let’s Go is still very much a game on my active list that I keep coming back to. Why? Because it’s fun and I am absolutely smitten by the art style and each of the Pokémon present all appears to have a lively personality. Then again, it could just be, in my personal opinion, I think Let’s Go are better games than Sword and Shield. Whatever the case may be, it’s 2021 and here are my 5 reasons why I still play Pokémon: Let’s Go in 2021:
The Shared Experience
Regardless of what series of the Pokémon anime you watch, aspiring Pokémon Master, Ash Ketchum, never journeys alone. From his beloved Pikachu to his trusted friends, there is always someone beside him to share in his exploits and this is something players of Let’s Go can experience as well.
Thanks to drop-in and drop-out co-op, players travelling around Kanto does not have to be a solitary affair as any family member or friend, can easily join you and all it requires is you both having one Joy-Con each. Granted the second player can only use Pokémon caught by the primary player, they can still be a vital asset in winning battles and catching Pokémon, even when they are just three years old. My little one might not understand the full ins and outs of the game, but he’s learning more every day and he enjoys it.
Much like how Ash has his beloved Pikachu, I have a Pikachu of my own I am smitten with and that Pikachu is Gizmo. Having chosen Pikachu over Eevee, I had a wonderful time refamiliarizing myself with Kanto with my trusty pal beside me.
For the majority of my playthrough, Gizmo often had a permanent place on my team and I’d be forever be changing his clothes just to have Gizmo match mine, but sadly, Kanto is the only region Gizmo will ever know. Unable to trade him out of the game, I occasionally like to boot up Let’s Go just to play with Gizmo from time to time. I’m still thinking of you buddy, even when I’m playing the likes of Pokémon Sword.
Having arrived late to the Mega party as I never encountered the likes of which until I played Omega Sapphire in 2016, I fell in love with this mechanic rather quickly. I loved the transformation sequences and I loved the redesigns that come with them and even though Let’s Go is just limited to Gen 1 Megas, it doesn’t make me love the game any less.
In fact, every time I find myself catching a shiny Pokémon in Pokémon GO, which I know is capable of Mega evolving, I can’t help but transfer it into the Let’s Go games and quickly evolve it, just so I can see the Mega transformation first hand. Mega Gengar, Slowbro, Alakazam and both Mega Charizard, are just some of my favourite transformations and thanks to Pokémon GO, I actually have all of them, with some being moved to Pokémon Sword, just so I can add their shiny Gigantamax forms to my Pokédex as well!
Shiny Hunting is a Lot More Fun
When it comes to the core games, I’ve never been much of a shiny hunter. I was never obsessed with shiny hunting and if I did encounter a shiny, be it by encountering one in the wild, or receiving via Mystery Gift, but when it comes to spin-offs, I can easily get obsessed.
Granted the majority of my shiny hunting takes place in Pokémon GO, the reality is, Let’s Go are the only games where I find shiny hunting the most satisfying. I love the fact you can chain 31 Pokémon and be looking for a very specific shiny, only to see another shiny Pokémon pop up instead and rushing over to catch it, which is a huge difference to other current Pokémon games.
With Sword, Shield and GO, whilst players can see Pokémon in the wild, they can only see their non-shiny forms, whereas Let’s Go happily has the shiny forms viewable at all times, so the only way to know if a Pokémon is shiny is to walk into it/click on it, whereas Let’s Go will just simply show you in the overworld.
Even though players now have the means of transferring Pokémon from Pokémon GO into Pokémon HOME, at a cost, when it comes to transferring shiny and non-shiny Gen 1 Pokémon, I find it easier to just do the whole thing through Let’s Go.
It might not be a quick process, but at least I am not being charged for the privilege of transferring select Pokémon and then waiting for a set amount of time before I can send some more. I can simply send as many as I wish, in a single setting, catch them all and then move them into HOME if I feel like it and when they are shiny, as an added bonus, I get to add their shiny information to my in-game Pokédex. I’ve never completed a Pokédex with shiny entries before, but with Pokémon GO, I’m getting closer every day.
Compelling argument or complete blasphemy? I’ll leave that to you guys to decide, while I spend some more time with Gizmo and to be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if I am still playing Let’s Go this time next year either.