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Pokken Tournament DX Review – A wonderful upgrade

The first Pokemon game for the Nintendo Switch is here! It might not be the Pokemon game everyone is looking forward too but for fighting game fans, Pokken Tournament DX is a wonderful upgrade which is worth the purchase.

 

Developer: BANDAI NAMCO
Publisher: Nintendo
Release Date: September 22, 2017
Platforms: Nintendo Switch
Platform Reviewed on: Nintendo Switch

 

Note: I also owned the original Wii U version back when that was first released so for that reason, I will be focusing on the upgrades and new game additions.

 

This game earns the “deluxe” part of the title through the great additions and enhancements it has received. Let’s take a look at the console factor first.

Being on the Nintendo Switch allows this game to be played on the go and at home by docking the console. I must also mention that the graphics while in handheld mode are stellar, just like it is one the big screen at home. The developer has also added a split-screen mode so you can play with another local player in the same room without needing another console. This also works in tabletop mode for the Switch, it’s possible to pass a Joycon to someone and fight on the smaller screen.

In terms of this, Bandai Namco has nailed it. The controls are easy to use and work amazingly well even without the bumper additions for the Joycons. I was even able to play it at a restaurant this past weekend while waiting for food. It just felt natural.

Split Screen

While the base game featured different modes, the DX edition comes with new ones as well. The daily challenge adds a fun factor to the game that allows you to experiment with different fighters in a gauntlet type mode. You will be rewarded with skill points for your partner Pokemon and the one that you use in the challenge.  This isn’t too much of a reward but it does make the game slightly more dynamic.

The biggest and coolest change, however, is the addition of “Team Battle”. This mode resembles an actual Pokemon Trainer battle in which you choose three Pokemon, the other trainer can’t see and have them fight three opponents.  The health of your Pokemon stays the same after you defeat a foe.  Last Pokemon standing wins so it’s essentially a ‘tag battle’ typically seen in other fighting games.

3v3

Five new Pokemon have been added to the roster, expanding it to a total of 21 characters to choose from.  Darkrai, Croagunk, Empoleon, Scizor, and Decidueye from Gen 6 have all make their debut in the DX edition. In addition to this, two new support Pokemon have been aded as well: Litten and Popplio. The developer has done a great job with all of their abilities so that they’re accurate and fun to play with. These new characters are nicely balanced and bring a more pleasurable experience overall.

Personally, I had a great time experimenting with these new characters. Scizor has always found a spot on my team in the main series of Pokemon games so it was only natural for me to play a lot with him. It felt great.

Each Pokemon has their own fighting style ranging from Techical, Power, Speed and All-Around. There’s also a new arean to battle in… assuming you find any time to have a look at your surroundings in the middle of a battle.

undocked

Pokken Tournament DX takes place in the Ferrum League. Just like the original game from the Wii U. “The League” mode is an attempt at a ‘story mode’ where players fight through the different ranks in an attempt to become the Champion of the League. There’s a lot of different Pokemon to battle here including a mysterious Shadow Metwtwo. This mode can get a little repetitive and start to feel a little annoying after a while. There’s only so long you can fight wave after wave of trainers after all.

 

Pokken Tournament DX is a very clean and polished game with stunning visuals and very robust game mechanics when it comes to the fighting. The addition of 3v3 Pokemon battles, nice online play, fresh Pokemon and a new arena make this game one to add to your collection. The redundant feel of the campaign can leave fans eager for more but still a very fun game.

 

 

 

Pros

  • Stunning visuals
  • Diverse Play Styles
  • Awesome online & Local experience

Cons

  • Redundant campaign
  • Lacks content
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