Isn't it About Time we Got an Official Pokemon MMORPG?
I’m a Pokemon nerd. I am. My favorite Pokemon games were Pokemon Yellow, followed by Pokemon Gold and Crystal. Those were absolutely phenomenal games, and instantly hooked me on the franchise.
I mean yeah I was a fan of Digimon as well, having played Digimon World 1 through 3 for the PS1 when they each originally released. But the Pokemon games, with the exception of the very first Digimon game have always been highly enjoyable for me.
So, fast forward to last week: I was talking about Anime MMORPGs. I mentioned that I was highly anticipating Temtem because it looked like a pretty good Pokemon-esque MMO since there is no official Pokemon MMORPG as of this moment.
However, several people pointed out that there were various Pokemon MMOs available right now – and I’m well aware. If you go onto Youtube and search for “MMOByte Pokemon,” you’ll see that I’ve covered literally every Pokemon MMO available.
My concern with those kinds of games is that they’re not official – while Game Freak have neglected to shut any of them down, the fact remains that they’re all fan-made, and despite how good or accurate they might be.. Iunno.
I’ve seen my fair share of private servers shut down over the years and playing a private server for a game as large as Pokemon just gives me a bad vibe long-term.
But that’s not my point. I’m not here to talk about the private servers. Instead, I’d much rather talk about an official Game Freak developed Pokemon MMORPG.
So as I’m sure a lotta you are aware, a Pokemon MMO is probably one of the most requested, most sought after MMO’s that the genre could ask for.
Now, Game Freak have actually discussed the potential for an MMO in the past. They didn’t really touch on it much but they made it very clear, that at least at the time, they had absolutely no interest in making one.
However, that was before titles like Temtem and DokeV were announced, and long before private servers were ever introduced.
See, private servers have tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of players. Temtem is highly anticipated, and Pearl Abyss knew exactly what the market wanted when they planned for DokeV.
You can’t think Game Freak and Nintendo haven’t taken note of this. But when Googling around looking for people’s opinions on the subject, I noticed that although a Pokemon MMO is in high demand.. literally nobody wants Game Freak to be in control of developing it.
And I get it – a lot of people believe Game Freak ruined Pokemon, and I’m not here to disparage those opinions.
Regardless of the developer chosen to oversee a Pokemon MMO, I don’t see them having nearly as deep of an understanding of the game.
Maybe new eyes on a Pokemon project would be a good idea. Maybe we could get a developer that has a lot of experience making an MMO and somehow incorporate monster-catching into the existing MMO formula?
But then comes a very specific issue: Pokemon games, every single Pokemon game has an end. They’re finite in terms of content. While yes, you can grind levels, breed a race of super-babies, hunt shinies, and these days, compete with other players.
How would progression work in a Pokemon MMO? To make it faithful to the franchise, you’d be required to have Gym Leaders, you’d have maximum levels. Maybe you’d have a League.
But after obtaining your 8 Badges, would that be it in terms of content? If so that’d be a Pokemon game.. that let you play in some form with other people. That wouldn’t make it an MMO.
So then would it be better to merge every region together? That’d provide players with no doubt quite the surplus of content to consume, but it would still have an end, not to mention the sheer amount of time and effort that would need to go into creating that world.
Currently, progression in MMOs function in a linear, predictable fashion: You level to max level, run dungeons and raids to get gear. Rinse and repeat until the next patch where you run new story content, new dungeons, and new raids. Continue to rinse and repeat.
That’s the age-old formula still utilized to date. And it works. Don’t get me wrong, this actually works. Look at every big MMO right now: With the exception of Black Desert, the majority of large MMOs all follow this exact formula of content updates.
But I don’t think that’d really work for Pokemon. We don’t obtain gear, and we don’t run dungeons or raids. Pokemon is a pretty basic game. You fight people, level up, and explore. That’s the basis of the game.
I would love a Pokemon MMORPG. I would. I think a Pokemon MMO could really shake the genre up, could really bring something new and innovative to the genre that has stagnated over time.
Yet at the same time, I don’t know how that would work. This might be part of the reason why Game Freak never had any plans to bring the game over in MMO form.
I feel like this is something that needs further discussion though.
To those of you that want an actual, official, licensed Pokemon MMORPG with the funding and backing of someone like Game Freak, what form would you like the game to take?
This discussion needs to happen, especially with Temtem and DokeV coming up in 2020.