As of the time of writing it’s been literal years since I last attempted a nuzlocke (RIP my old 3DS), but finally, the itch has gotten too strong and I have Pokemon Brilliant Diamond easily available right in front of me. I will suffer from this urge no longer, and then I will fight Cynthia and suffer a whole lot.

Session 1

I’m doing something I’ve never actually done before in a Pokemon game and have set battle style to “set” as opposed to the default “shift”. This means that when I defeat a trainer pokemon I won’t get a warning about what they’re going to throw out and I won’t be given the option to switch my own pokemon in advance. I expect this to be the result of multiple deaths. I am also, of course, working with the dupes clause. When I enter a new location if I encounter a pokemon I already have I get 3 chances to find something new.

I had my mom pick my starter, (which also doubles as my Lake Verity catch), and got turtwig! This continues my streak of never having played a Sinnoh game using a starter other than the tiny leaf pokemon. Gurken is male, modest, and likes to run. I will raise him to become strong and powerful.

After escaping the tutorial I caught a kricketot on route 202 then ran back to 201 to catch a bidoof. Say hello to Acoustic, (female, quiet, takes plenty of siestas, level 4) and Doofus, (male, gentle, proud of its power, level 2)!

Not a great first few catches tbh. Brilliant Diamond doesn’t have HMs so I won’t need to keep a bibarel as an HM slave (thank fucking christ), and kricketune is perhaps the most underwhelming bug type in the franchise. The quick claw you get in Jubilife immediately went on Gurken. My son is already becoming a killing machine.

My route 204 catch is…!! A Fucking Zubat.

Derrick (named by my mom because I was so disappointed I was drawing a blank), male, naughty, takes plenty of siestas, level 4.

Crobat is actually pretty great if I can keep Derrick alive, but I was really hoping for a starly or shinx. Especially considering Mount Coronet, which I will be spending a lot of time in, is lousy with zubats/golbats. Especially especially considering the Ravaged Path just a few steps away only had zubats. This is what I get for playing at night, I suppose.

Did a little grinding before the first proper Barry fight. I was very worried going in since Gurkin is still my only party member that can actually do some damage at this point, but is weak to both of Barry’s pokemon. He took down the starly like a champ, then got chimchar to half health. I was able to get a few free hits in thanks to chimchar only using leer, but after 3 leers I got nervous and switched into Doofus. Good thing because I think that scratch would’ve killed Gurken! Doofus did a noble job finishing the fight. Also Acoustic evolved!

Route 203’s catch is an abra. I have never caught an abra this early in the game so holy shit. They must’ve buffed the catch rate at some point.

Mira (named for being a miracle), female, relaxed, capable of taking hits, level 5.

Unfortunately my excitement was quickly dampened when I remembered that alakazam is a trade evolution. I think as a kadabra she’ll at least be good in the early game. Oreburgh Gate’s catch is geodude, as I expected.

Georude, male, careful, likes to thrash about, level 5. I hate the geodude line. I always have and I always will. I will be boxing this little shit as soon as I can. Oreburgh Mine is also filled with geodudes, so no catch there.

With the quick claw + razor leaf spam combo Gerkun single-handley Obliterated the gym. Sayonara, Roark, you rock type shit. Next up is the grass gym in Eterna. Please pray that either I catch a starly or Derrick becomes good in time for it because I know Gurken’s ass is grass against that roserade.

Session 2

Time for the long road to Eterna. I made a stop through Oreburgh Gate’s second floor to pick up all the items, and I think it’s very funny that most of the pokemon you summon for HMs are bidoofs/bibarels. They Knew lol.

Back in Jubilife and it’s time for the first Team Galactic battle! Love that Professor Rowan is ready to throw hands, but he’s at least 60 so I guess his (non-pokemon) fighting days are over. Also the Galactic battles take place in, like, the Space-Time Combat Dimension.

I love love love Floaroma Town. It’s one of the areas I remember spending a lot of time in doing nothing. I’m slightly tempted to draw out this run by grinding for berries so I can buy cute pokeball stickers, but I’ll hold off. Might spend some time in the contest hall just for fun, though.

Galactic guys are blocking the way to route 205’s grass patches so my first catch in this area was a Pachirisu at the Valley Windworks.

Baby (named because his only move was baby-doll eyes), male, sassy, likes to thrash about, level 8.

Despite how badly i wanted to box Georude I kept him in case I needed a sacrifice against Mars’ scary purugly. That thing has consistently murdered my team every gen 4 playthrough. When you have to backtrack to Floaroma to get the Valley Windworks key I hate that the game makes you fight the two grunts one after the other. More double battles please! Also I always forget that early on Team Galactic is trying to harness pokemon evolution energy Or Whatever. It feels like they make a hard turn outta nowhere into using the lake guardians.I’ll keep an eye out for any dialogue on this that I might’ve forget, which will be very embarrassing for me as a Sinnoh nerd if I’ve missed such an important piece of the Lore.

But on to the scary Mars fight! I’ve been leading with Doofus for all these Galactic fights since they mostly have zubats and Doofus has picked up rollout. The OHOKs I was getting with rollout made me prideful, though. I was expecting it to do big damage to Mars’ purugly but it did not, it didn’t even OHKO her zubat, and the zubat u-turned into purugly immediately. Luckily, purugly used fake out and broke Doofus out of rollout with the flinch. Also, purugly almost took out Doofus with that one attack. It was very scary!

I switched into Georude so he could fulfill his purpose, and after I healed Doofus he was actually still hanging on pretty well thanks to that rock type physical defense. I had him use rollout until death. He went out nobly by getting purugly low enough to use her oran berry, and then, with his final rollout, did enough damage to negate the oran berry heal. I am now free of Georude. I didn’t even remember to write down his death level, like 13/14 maybe. RIP in pieces.

Doofus was then able to finish off the battle with more rollout. Doofus and (finally) Gurken both evolved from this fight! Grabbed my 205 catch and got a shellos.

Slugo, female, lax, impetuous and silly, level 10. Since Doofus is now part water I boxed her and brought out Baby for type diversity.

Mira evolved after the first trainer battle on 205 and finally learned an attack move. She then went on to get her first kill vs a battle girl a little further up. By this point I was leading as many fights as possible with Acoustic because I’ve given up on finding a starly or Derrick learning a flying type move. I should be able to get at least one good fury cutter on Gardenia’s roserade.

Eterna Forest is one of the sections of the game where you’re forced to team up with an NPC, so I was very worried about Cheryl killing my catch. I was also excited since the double battle would give me an extra option!

2 silcoons.

Whatever, female, gentle, mischievous, level 10. The very next fight had a murkrow. I don’t know if that murkrow had super luck as its ability, but it could’ve. I could’ve had a super luck honchkrow night slash/air cutter-ing through the end game. But I don’t.

Did some mindless grinding with Acoustic for the gym and got Baby up to level. Thanks, Cheryl.

I decided to run around Eterna City and grab all the items before I quit for the day. Cynthia jump scare right outside of the Team Galactic building! Hey, lady, why don’t you do something about the criminal organization that’s set up shop in the city and is stealing people’s pokemon?

Final thing! Since the Platinum pokedex expansion is in the Grand Underground now I’ve decided to grant myself one pokemon from it per gym. I’m also giving myself a grace period re: team KOs when catching my underground pokemon since they scale in level. That’d just be a huge pain if I was risking team deaths for one catch. If I’m just grinding in the underground then deaths are fair game.

My first catch was a swablu. Fluffy, female, gentle, loves to eat, level 17.

Altaria can be a monster, so while I worry about having 2 pokemon quadruple weak to ice types (yes, I’m assuming Gurken will survive the entire run), I’ll still be considering her for the main team. I will not be using her for the gym because despite being a flying type, despite being a cute little bird, swablu doesn’t have any flying moves.

Will be taking on the gym and Jupiter’s scary skuntank nest session. It’d be nice to catch a gible in Wayward Cave but I know that’s not happening.

Session 3

I simultaneously didn’t do too much and made a lot of progress this session. The Eterna gym battle background was fun. Despite the trees and flowers the camera angle makes it very clear that you’re still in a building, it shows off the light fixtures and the black void ceiling behind them.

The first gym trainer had a roselia. Acoustic’s fury cutter easily one-shotted it but I noticed it didn’t deal super effective damage. It was then that I remembered the roserade line is grass/poison. All this training with Acoustic and she can only deal neutral damage to Gardenia’s ace. I was still in good spirits, though. Even without the type advantage Acoustic was sweeping the gym trainers, up until the final one, which had a level 17 roselia that Acoustic failed to one-shot. I wasn’t looking up what level Gardenia’s pokemon were, but I knew for sure roserade was higher than that. All I could think going into the fight was that I should've trained Mira.

Acoustic OHKO’ed both Gardenia’s cherubi and turtwig, in that time Derrick leveled up and once again failed to learn a flying type move. (He wanted to learn quick guard instead, which is utterly useless in this run but that’s a whole other tangent.) It was time for the final battle. Roserade was level 22 vs Acoustic’s 23. I had equipped her with a pecha berry to protect against roserade’s poison point, but it was for naught as it went first and used stun spore. Now I had a paralyzed lead. Mira was my best hope but there was no way to safely switch into her. I prayed to get at least one decent fury cutter before I lost my second team member.

Acoustic got another one-shot. It wasn’t even a crit.

Everyone else leveled up. I led with Doofus through the Galactic fights since I knew they’d all still have zubats and wurmples. Now, after Gardenia’s fake out scary roserade, it was time for Jupiter’s actually scary skuntank. This guy is scary for several reasons. Skuntank is, as the name implies, tanky, poison/dark is a troublesome typing, it knows flamethrower (generally scary move) and poison gas (guarantee poison), and on top of all that its ability aftermath deals a chunk of damage when it faints. I couldn’t just plan to out speed it at the final moment, or even hope for a lucky crit, because if my pokemon’s health was too low skuntank would still take it out after the fact. Everyone got a pecha berry before the fight, save Gurken because the quick claw would be his only hope.

I switched out Doofus for Baby. Between fights he’d learned nuzzle, guarantee paralysis, and swift, guarantee damage. I figured he could at least get skuntank to use its sitrus berry, which he did! Baby and skuntank traded poison gas for nuzzle, the pecha berry solved that problem and I got a free turn in as skuntank used poison gas again. After the sitrus berry proc I got in a little more damage with Baby and had an idea. The AI was prioritizing keeping the poison status condition going so I healed up Baby, used an antidote, and was able to safely switch into Doofus thanks to his pecha berry! Because bibarel is normal/water stuntank switched from flamethrower to the much less threatening snarl and Doofus headbutted his way to victory! Also the paralysis did not kick in even once.

Got the bike (blue) and remembered I had a new Grand Underground pokemon to catch. I took my chances on a murkrow and boy am I glad I’m giving myself a grace period with these catches! The murkrow was level 29, and even paralyzed and in the red it took almost all of my pokeballs. When I finally caught the bastard she didn’t even have super luck, but she knows wing attack so goodbye for now, Derrick

Boss, female, lax, highly curious, level 29. She is now my highest level pokemon. Why is the Grand Underground so scary?! I was planning to use it for late game grinding but hmmmm we’ll see maybe.

As I was fighting my way down the cycling road it occurred to me that I should probably be saving these fights for my (ill-fated) upcoming catch. Lucas was waiting for me with the vs seeker (and the downing app I guess,) at the end, so it all worked out. Now onto route 206 just beneath the cycling road.

First encounter: zubat.

Second encounter: zubat.

Last chance third encounter: kricketune.

Fine. Whatever. After that I ran into a ponyta and then a stunky. It’s FINE.

Next session I’ll be making a pit stop in Wayward Cave, where I will fail to catch a gible. Fingers crossed for a bronzor with levitate. I’m also wondering if I should allow myself multiple catches for Mount Coronet given you have to make multiple trips through it and it’s got something like 6 floors and an exterior section. I’ll think about it.

Session 4

Whoa, it’s been a while! Sorry about that. I had a long period where I just wasn’t in the gaming mood, then recently I’ve been distracted with other games (cough cough play Anode Heart and Risk of Rain Returns cough).

Starting where I left off at Wayward Cave! This is another section of the game where you can team up with an NPC, but that requires knowing flash so I only ran around the entrance long enough to get my encounters. I say encounters because cave dwelling pokemon besides zubat and geodude don’t exist. Moving on, I was playing late enough at night (something like 4am if I remember correctly?) that the game’s internal clock registered it as morning. No need to worry about zubats in the overworld at least!

I’ve decided to give myself three catches for Mount Coronet. One for right now, one for the snowy exterior section, and a final one for the part that opens up when it’s time to face off against Team Galactic. Wild pokemon levels in Mount Coronet take a sharp turn from mid-teens to the late-30/early-40s on those late game floors, so I think this is fair. The first Mount Coronet is a machop.

Chad, male, hardy, hates to lose, level 16.

It’s a good thing he hates to lose because I will never be using him! I hate the machop line almost as much as the geodude line and I’m not even able to fully evolve it, so straight to the box he goes. Both Mount Coronet and Wayward Cave have bronzor in their spawn pools, and I really really wanted a bronzor. The manmade/”object” pokemon are so charming to me and also I’d love to be able to replace Mira with something that won’t die to a papercut.

Anyways. Hi, Cyrus. I wonder if he has the conversation with every stranger he meets, or just random twelve year olds he meets in caves. Right outside is route 208 and my shiny new catch, a meditite.

Marshmallow, male, lax, somewhat vain, level 16.

Meditite has always just been one of those “eh” pokemon to me. I don’t hate it, but I don’t ever remember it exists either. Maybe in the timeline where megas were normal evolutions given to older pokemon to make them relevant, as opposed to a single gen gimmick mechanic, I’d actually care, but for now it’s just. Eh. Marshmallow is in the box, but under heavy consideration for use later. While fighting through the route’s trainers Mira hit level 25 and learned recover, meaning she at last has a full moveset!

Onto Hearthome City and one of the many (many) things I’ve forgotten about this game is the hiker that gives you a pokemon egg here. I spent a second wracking my brain as to what the egg could be. Gen 4 added a bunch of new baby pokemon, so could it be one of those? Gen 4 also famously gave a bunch of pokemon nobody cared about new evolutions via weird mechanics. Now, out of all pokemon only available from eggs togepi can be considered the poster child of the group, it also got a new evo via the newly introduced dawn stone. Could this be how I get my hands on the absolute killing machine that is togekiss??

Hold that thought for a bit.

I boxed Acoustic to grab the egg then ran around and did everything in Hearthome. I miss the old contests. It’d already be hard to top the pokemon dress-up minigame but they just replaced it with a generic rhythm game. Amity Square continues its discrimination against “non-cute” pokemon. I 100% stand with that one guy outside the entrance who’s upset he can’t take his steelix for a walk. Also ever think about how weird it is that Amity Square is built on top of some kind of ancient ruins? I know Sinnoh’s big thing is its history and mythology, but Amity Square is just straight up an ominous location, there are cursed looking buildings there, it’s where you find the spooky plate. After visiting the church (where people go to worship Arceus I guess??) I went to leave Hearthome and face planted into the second Barry fight.

Baby was able to one-shot Barry’s starly and buizel, then nuzzled roselia so I could switch into Boss. Boss one-shotted roselia and even though she was poisoned in the process took down monferno. Crisis averted! After the fight I swapped Boss for Derrick because the fighting type gym is coming up and her partial dark typing might be a problem. Boss is over leveled at this point so she’s good to go and perhaps Derrick will maybe learn a flying type move on the trip to Veilstone.

Accidentally killed my route 209 catch. It was a mime jr so I think that’s for the best. Derrick evolved, though! All that’s in Solaceon Town is the daycare and the ruins. I ran through the ruins real quick to grab all the items, but didn’t bother catching anything since it’s all unowns. In the original game there’s an NPC you show your unown to in exchange for pokeball seals of the corresponding letter. I don’t think they have those anymore specifically so you can’t have your pokemon explode onto the scene in a hail of sparkles and the word GAYASS, I’m not sure what they’ve replaced it with, though. After that I ran to grab my route 210 catch, a ponyta!

Slow Dancer, male, impish, likes to thrash about, level 26. Everyone clap and cheer for one of Sinnoh’s 5 fire types! If nothing else he’ll be a help against Maylene’s lucario. I then proceeded to clear out all trainers on the route 210 that were standing in the way of the Egg Hatching Bicycle Path and got to work on that definitely a togepi I mentioned earlier.

After ten real life human minutes of going up and down on a straight line and occasionally getting stuck on a ledge it hatched into a happiny. So massively disappointed I misclicked and didn’t name her, careful, alert to sounds. She went right in the box so I could grab Slow Dancer and I immediately looked up where to get togepi in this game. It has a 10% spawn rate in two Grand Underground biomes so that’s what I’m doing after Maylene. I don’t care if this is cheating, I’m finding nothing but zubats and geodudes, I deserve this. Watching it die to a crit after I spend forever catching it in the first place will be punishment enough.

Went to the Lost Tower. Caught a gastly. Yet another mon going in the box because I can’t fully evolve it.

BOO! Female, docile, alert to sounds, level 17.

I thought the roughneck with a cleffa was cute, but hey, did Team Galactic fucking kill his pokemon??

Moving on.

Once again, I failed to catch anything on route 215; however, to cap off this horrible ses, not only did Gurken evolve on the way to Veilstone City, so did Derrick! And!! He learned air cutter!!!

Derrick, my beloved boy, I take back every mean thing I’ve ever said about you. I’m so, so sorry. I complained, I boxed you, I planned to use you as fodder, yet you still fully evolved the moment you were given the opportunity. Via the power of friendship, no less. Despite my treatment, you friendship evo-ed and taught yourself a precious, precious flying type move. I will never be able to atone for how I treated you, yet you forgave me anyways. Derrick… my greatest friend… you are now a perma member of the team and I know you will make me proud VS Maylene…

Session 5

Lucas was waiting for me outside the Veilstone gym. I was worried it was time for a rival fight, but no, he was just standing around. Inside I immediately ran into the problem that many fighting types can learn rock slide and rock tomb. My sweet baby Derrick I will not let you go out like that. I poked around the Department Store for anything useful and taught Derrick u-turn so he could more easily switch out for Mira if needed, then I slapped the metronome I’d apparently found at some point onto Derrick for his air cutter spam, gave Mira the mind plate I’d also picked up, and prayed because Slow Dancer was way too underleveled for Maylene’s lucario.

But before that I got stuck on the goddamn gym slide puzzle for several minutes.

After I freed myself DERRICK SWEEP BABYYYYYY!! I don’t know why I was so worried, I should’ve trusted my boy to pull through for me. He didn’t even take any damage :’]

Back outside Lucas got robbed of his highly valuable pokedex like a loser, but whatever, I’ve got a togepi to catch first. Since togepi only has a 10% spawn rate I was very worried about how long it would take to catch the little bastard, but it actually took me longer to find the right cave than it did for it to spawn.

Sunny (side up), female, relaxed, highly curious, level 29.

Togepi is incredibly skewed towards male (87% male vs 12% female according to Bulbapedia), so between that, how easy she was to catch, and her having the line’s good ability (serene grace) I’m taking this as an auspicious sign. She’s going in the box until I get that shiny stone, though, since togepi has shit stats.

I decided to lead with Slow Dancer through the road to Pastoria to get him up to level. Route 214’s catch was a girafarig.

Palindrome, female, relaxed, capable of taking a hit, level 24. She can keep Sunny company in the box for the time being.

Valor Lakefront was a bust. 2 kricketunes and a geodude, and on route 213 Gurken fucking Obliterated my potential buizel with a single bite. I actually avoided all the trainers on 213 because I wanted to save them for leveling my new catches coming up at the Great Marsh. I allowed myself 1 catch per area, so I’ll go through them rapid fire.

Area 2 = Quacks the psyduck. Area 3 = Punk the marill. Area 4 = Mudfish the wooper. Area 6 = Birdly the hoothoot. Since Punk is now a member of the team I’ll give him a proper introduction.

Punk (because Nintendo wouldn’t let me name him Killer), male, bashful, hates to lose, level 23.

Why did I want to name him Killer? Because azumarills with huge power as their ability are notorious killing machines. Is it a bad idea to have both my team’s physical and special powerhouses as fairy types that are also weak to electric? Assuredly.

But anyways, to make space for Punk on the team I had to box Doofus :[ See ya, old pal. You got me through some tough spots. Since Slow Dancer will be absolutely useless for this gym I also boxed him and put Sunny on the team to do some Friendship Points Grinding. In BDSP battling gym leaders gives a friendship bump to the whole party regardless of whether the pokemon was used in the fight, and having Sunny as my walk around pokemon will give her an extra chance to boost friendship per every 128 footsteps. After Crasher Wake (who I know my boy Gurken is going to destroy) I’ll probably box her again until I get the soothe bell. I’m also not sure what to get as my next Grand Underground pokemon. A magnezone might be nice just for the type coverage, though I’m not sure about its stats/move pool off the top of my head. Or since Mira’s going to be outclassed soon I could aim for a bronzong, preferably with levitate since Sihnnoh suffers from such a dearth of fire types. I might just wander around until I find a fun cave so who knows!

Now off to the water gym!

session 6

So my boy Gurken did not destroy Crasher Wake as much as I was hoping he would. While Crasher Wake has a quagsire (quadruple weakness to grass) his other 2 pokemon know offensive ice type moves, so I had to lead with Baby. I’m getting more mileage out of this pachirisu than I’d thought, but I guess if it’s good enough for the 2014 Pokemon World Championship Finals it’s good enough for my subpar strats nuzlocke.

Baby easily took out Crasher Wake’s gyarados, then I brought out Gurken to Obliterate quagsire. Now here’s where we get to the subpar strats. I was worried about switching into Baby since that’d mean floatzel would get a free hit on him, then assuredly outspeed him to get a second hit. I was confident in Gurken getting the OHKO, but that quadruple effective ice fang was very scary. I decided to risk it and slightly wailed in agony over my foolishness when Gurken was taken down to half health in one hit, but my boy pulled through!

Once outside I immediately went to the Grand Underground for my new catch. I did a little treasure hunting while I looked for a cool cave, and reflected on the fact that everyone, including the gym trainers, act like Crasher Wake is some kind of weirdo. He’s literally a wrestler? Known cool thing?? But anyways I caught a skuntank because I just think they’re neat :]

Stinky (yes very uncreative), female, lax, nods off a lot, level 34.

Currently her only damaging move is sucker punch, so if she gets brought on the team I’ll need to do some tm shopping/move remembering first. For now I’m happy with the current team so into the box she goes. Back on the surface I ran into that Team Galactic guy very vocally planning to blow up Lake Valor, and the 3rd Barry fight. All this time and still Barry’s only evolved pokemon is his monferno. I was expecting him to at least have a staravia by this point? I looked it up afterwards, and yep! Both his starly and buizel should be evolved at level 26. Can’t believe this baby game is holding my hand like this. When I got to the fight vs the Galactic grunt I noticed Mt Coronet is actually visible in the background of overworld fights! Very fun detail.

But, Cynthia, do you really need me to do your chores? Some guy is trying to blow up a protected historical site. I decided to take the long way to the roadblock psyducks by going through route 212 to Heathome, and boy was it a slough! First off, my catch. A roselia.

Rosslyn, female, serious, proud of its power, level 18. I will assuredly not be using her since I’ve already got my precious Boy.

I lead with Punk to get him up to level and goddamn it the safari ball release effect makes it look like he’s coming out of a fart cloud. I tried putting together a ball capsule just for him, but that only made it worse. It fit the scene, though, since the route is filled with horrible mud pits. I don’t understand the point of them. No wild pokemon or trainers are in the mud, so all it does is force you to violently wiggle around. Multiple times. As you constantly get restuck. I can at least see its purpose in the Great Marsh adding to the ambiance and challenge by the footstep limit, but here it’s just annoying.

You know what else is annoying? All the pokecops surrounding the Pokemon Mansion segment of the route. Since the police are a time sensitive trainer class this route probably would’ve been a lot easier if I played during the day for once in my life. I grabbed the soothe bell from the mansion and caught a staravia in the Trophy Garden.

Chicken, male, bold, highly persistent, level 17.

Boxed since my good friend Derrick is already here for me. Sorry, dude. Maybe if you showed up a few sessions ago. Once in Hearthome I slapped that soothe bell on Sunny and swapped her in for Slow Dancer again. To be honest I’m starting to feel bad for Slow Dancer. Poor guy exists only to be swapped in and out of the team.

One quick bike trip up route 210 and the psyducks are cured of their headaches! Also Cynthia had another chore for me. I was just happy I wouldn’t have to waste a team slot teaching something defog since the original HMs are replaced with an app in this game. It continues to be route 210 past the psyducks and all the way to Celestic Town, so even though Cynthia baited me with the promise of rare pokemon on the way I won’t be able to get any.

I then learned that, even though HMs are used via an app, you still need to have gotten the item to teach the move to your pokemon! For some reason!! I had to look up where to get defog. The singular NPC in the Great Marsh I apparently didn’t talk to had it. Fly to Pastoria, run in the Great Marsh, fly back to Solaceon, bike up route 210 until I hit the grass you can’t bike through, and then I finally fought my way up to Celestic Town.

This session was a real drag and I was very tired at this point, so I quit in the town pokecenter. I’ll finish Cynthia’s chores next time.

Session 7

Hey! Long time no see!. Sorry for the wait. I actually played this session a while ago but for some reason totally lacked the motivation to properly write it out. I’ve got my notes here tho so let’s get started.

First off I swapped out Mira for Slow Dancer for good. I realized Mira wasn’t getting any play and it’s always a good idea to have a fire type on hand in my opinion (even if ponyta kinda sucks). Immediately outside there is a man yelling about how he plans to blow up the town. Fun stuff. The game briefly froze when I initiated the battle, nearly giving me a heart attack in the process, but besides that it went fine. I don’t know why that guy was gonna blow the place up because Cyrus walked in right behind him to have another ominous chat. Was that a rogue Galactic grunt? Does Cyrus just kind of let his employees do whatever they feel like? I guess we’ll never know.

Got surf from Cynthia’s grandma, which I would really like to teach to Punk because it’s actually a decent move, but unfortunately azumarill is a physical attacker so it’d be a waste. At least I have it in case of an emergency. Now it’s back to Heathome once again to finally take on the ghost type gym.

Since Gurken and Derrick both know bite they took turns sweeping past the many small children Fantina employs. I always thought it was weird that the Hearthome gym puzzle is solving basic math problems. I guess it’s to show off the calculator but it’s not very in theme for a ghost type contest star, and it’s a pain in the ass to use the poketch in this remake, At least the battle backgrounds are cool. It’s all spooky stained glass panels and you can tell Fantina isn’t skimping on the fog machine costs.

I lead with Derrick because of his ability to u-turn the fuck outta there. Going in I was worried about Fantina’s capacity to drown my team in states effects, as well as her leading drifblim’s aftermath ability. Derrick doesn’t have crunch yet so it was slow going whittling down that tanky drifblim one bite at the time, but it did have the unintended upside of making Fantine waste all of her potions early. Finally Derrick tanked the aftermath damage and it was time to face gengar. Derrick moved first but gengar was holding a colbur berry which halved the damage of bite and allowed gengar to hold on! Then it confused Derrick! Next turn he pulled through for me and finished off gengar before things could get bad. Mismagius was a safe switch into Gurken. It used phantom force on the, but Gurken was slow enough to hit with crunch after it popped back into the field on the next turn.

Outside Cynthia told me to use the power of surf to go to the Canalave library, but first my all important Grand Underground catch. While poking around I found a draco plate, which I probably won’t use, but it’s cool and that’s what counts. This trip’s catch was a skorupi.

Stingem, female, serious, quick tempered, level 37.

Skorupi’s evolution drapion can be a monster, so I decided to snag one as a backup team member. Unfortunately, if I do end up losing a party member during this chuck on the game she’ll still have to sit on the bench because the next gym leader is Byron.

I don’t really have a good counter for steel. Slow Dancer won’t be much help since most steel pokemon are dual-typed rock or ground. For the time being I’m going to be leveling Gurken and Punk in hopes that Gurken’s earthquake and Punk’s super effectiveness vs rock and ground will be enough.

And now, the last big thing of the session: the fourth Barry fight in Canalave!

First match-up was Punk vs staravia. After a quick and very solid endeavor on Punk, Barry switched to roselia. I swapped in Derrick and got an OHKO with air cutter. Monferno did some decent damage, but Derrick pulled through. After that u-turn-ed on buizel into Baby who quickly got the KO.

Next up was Baby vs heracross, a match-up I wasn’t expecting because I had no idea Barry had that. To play it safe I used nuzzle to paralyze, then swapped into Slow Dancer. A disastrous move as I switched directly into a brick break! I almost lost Slow Dancer, but he easily out sped heracross on the next turn. All Barry had left was his damaged staravie. Slow Dancer was one hit away from death, but anything I switched into would take a free hit from staravia and possibly go down in the second turn. I placed my bet and… Slow Dancer prevailed!

No deaths and I got a bunch of levels for the whole team outta that fight! I decided that was a good stopping point, so I grabbed all the items from NPCs in Canalave, then set sail for Iron Island. I’m pretty sure Iron Island is entirely optional, but it’ll be good to get some extra levels in before Byron. Hopefully there won’t be such a long break between sessions next time!