Pokémon Scarlet and Violet: The Indigo Disk is a true master…

After a difficult year, pokemon scarlet And Purple‘S The story is ending next month. Its second dlc, indigo discwill expire your bonus Hidden Treasure of Area Zero Arch on 14 December. It will kick off the series’ most heavily tested set of games to date, having been lambasted at launch for performance issues and poor visual quality. indigo disc That narrative certainly won’t be reversed, but it at least has a chance to appease disappointed fans – especially after a massive decline. teal mask Expansion.

Ahead of its launch, I got a hands-on preview of the upcoming DLC, giving me an idea of ​​what to expect. I explored its new open world area, saw some familiar monsters, and fought in one of the toughest battles to date in a mainline Pokémon story. Every technical issue in the base game still reared its ugly head during my playtime, but indigo disc At least it brings some high-level challenges into the mix that will test even the most experienced competitive players.

Same problems, new challenges

indigo disc picks up right after teal maskConclusion (players must beat it to start the new DLC). In it, I’m sent to Blueberry Academy, a giant biodome floating in the middle of the ocean. It features a round, open-world area divided into four different environments. In one corner are your standard grasslands, while in the other is a giant snowy mountain filled with ice Pokémon. it is much bigger than teal maskIt’s a smaller open world, although the general design isn’t much different.

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If you’re hoping the new area will come with some technological improvements, you’ll be disappointed. The scene is still a baffling mess that you just need to swallow and stick with in order to enjoy the otherwise robust monster-catching loop. When a cutscene showed me sweeping shots of each biome, entire swaths of land popped into existence from blackness. At some point, I climbed as high as I could on a snowy mountain and looked out at the world, which seemed as detailed as a 90s PlayStation game – no exaggeration.

A player views the open world in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet: The Indigo Disc.

It’s a shame, because the core gameplay is strong in this generation of Pokémon. This has only improved with DLC that focuses more on high-stakes battles. The big difference is that Blueberry Academy’s course is built around dual battles, which more closely mirrors the series’ competitive online scene. My main goal during the demo was to defeat a member of the Elite Four.

Before participating in that battle, I had to do some small things first. I had a quick homework assignment to complete, in which I had to track down and catch an Alolan form Pokémon in the world (naturally, I went for the hilariously tall Exeggutor). Once I was ready to take on the Elite Four challenge, I had to complete a simple gym trial in which I had to fly through rings using Coradon. It all seemed quite easy until the fight started…

A trainer stands in front of two Alolan Exeggutors in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet: The Indigo Disc.

Battle of the Elite Four is no joke indigo disc, Without revealing specifics, my opponent’s team had all the synergy and strategies I expect when I enter an online match. Despite having the type advantage, my monsters went down in one fell swoop as unexpected moves would completely foil my more obvious plans. My opponent’s team was also built around the familiar double team setup, flexible enough to make every monster combination deadly in its own way. Considering how easy modern Pokémon games are, I was pleasantly surprised. I already know that if I had the chance I would rework my team from Base Adventure.

It’s the details that finally excite me to dig deeper indigo disc despite being disappointed by teal mask, I’m still surprised by how bad the technical side of it is, and the new open world seems to be the same, but it looks like it’s bringing some serious endgame challenges. Red And Purple, It feels like a crash course in competitive play, with players thrown into the online scene as soon as the single-player story ends. That master’s degree education feels like a natural graduation ceremony for the school-themed adventure.

pokemon scarlet And Purple: Indigo Disc Launching on December 14th for Nintendo Switch.

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