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Old 07-04-2017, 05:55 PM   #304
Nebby. Back into the bag.
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Originally Posted by Ironthunder View Post
But the 'friendships' storyline of XY...
Originally Posted by dirkac View Post
The friendship thing was something that I felt had promise but was just squandered really badly.
Guys, guys ... I never said I was a big fan of the friendship subplot.

Originally Posted by Talon87 View Post
I feel like XY's story is divided into three parts -- the Team Flare subplot, the AZ subplot, and the best friends forever subplot -- and while I'm happy to give you that the Team Flare subplot is pretty weak, I think the best friends subplot is about on par with most of Sun & Moon's while the AZ subplot is hands down the best subplot between the two games.
It feels like you guys took this to mean, "He thinks the friends subplot is good! >O" and proceeded to explain to me why you guys think it's bad. Uhh ... guys? ^^; Of course it's bad. Everyone hates Tierno. Everyone thinks Shauna is 2-dimensional. Everyone thinks Trevor is meh. And of course everyone thinks that Rival Calem / Rival Shauna is underdeveloped.

I wasn't saying the friends subplot is good. I was saying it's about on par with most of Sun & Moon's plot. Sun & Moon is ... very dopey, a lot of the time. Sometimes it works okay (the comic relief in the fire trial) ... sometimes it works very well ("GET IN THE BAG, NEBBY!") ... but most of the time it makes the game feel like it's been written for babies. Kukui's secret identify as the Masked Royal is never a secret to begin with ... his destiny as Alola's first stand-in "Champion" for the first crowned Champion to take on is equally obvious ... and as for most of the Trial Captains, they ... are just uncomfortably cartoon character-ey. They feel very much like they're written for a babies cartoon. I guess it makes perfect sense then why they're the co-stars of the Sun & Moon anime alongside Ash.

Where Sun & Moon's plot really shines is three characters -- Lusamine, Lillie, and Guzma. Even Gladion and the subplot with Type:Null is meh, but his sister is, like I wrote several months ago, without a doubt the best-written character in Sun & Moon. I don't think she's the best sidekick character in the history of the games -- for me, that honor still goes to rival Hugh from Black & White 2 -- but she has a clear progression arc, she goes from being a little annoying to being cute and endearing, she's just good. Lusamine is also good (and much alluded to at this point), but I think Guzma doesn't get enough credit either. I think the plot twist about who the Skulls are -- mostly kids who failed the island challenge -- and about who Guzma is -- someone who is legitimately talented, who feels the Island Challenge is fundamentally flawed, who feels sorry for these kids who are humiliated after failing the challenge, and who wants to dismantle it from without -- all of this is fascinating. Guzma's challenges are not even entirely addressed by game's end. Kukui goes ahead with his wide-eyed vision of a Pokémon League for Alola, turning a blind eye to the fact that, just as the Island Challenge produced legions of Skull Grunts, so too might the new League system churn out hundreds of dejected young men and women who are made to feel like shit for either a) failing to get all eight gym badges or b) failing to become Champion.

But for every Lillie the game presents us with, there's also a Hau waiting in the wings to make me grimace at just how Tierno 2.0 he is. (Fucking Hau, man. We went from Hugh ... to this. ) For every Lusamine or Guzma, there's a Faba or 2-dimensional Trial Captain.

Not everyone has to be deep. But the ones that are shallow, it's nice to have some glitter. There's not much depth to Olivia, but we get to enjoy things like a) how she's single despite being so fetching and b) how she adores cute things like Stufful even though her specialty is in Rock-type training. There's not much depth to Hala, but it's enough to know that he's a grandfatherly sort to go easy(-ier) on the little kids just starting their journeys on the first island and yet when he takes the kid gloves off he's a fearsome trainer who was rightly identified by Tapu Koko as his island's greatest warrior.

Anyway ... I don't want you guys thinking that I though the Forever Friends <3 subplot was glorious writing. I didn't, and I don't. It's just that, ... just as XY has its AZ subplot but not much else going for it plot-wise, SM has its Aether & Skulls subplot and then not much else going for it plot-wise.

... Maybe it's easier if we can all simply agree that BW2 remains the game with the best-written plot to date? ^^; And even BW1 and BW2's plots are flawed ... We're still waiting on a truly perfect plot out of Pokémon ... :\
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