It’s been a busy time for me to do much with the site lately, but I’ve generally been keeping up with things related to games at least, like Slime Rancher actually being playable on Switch now, the quadrillionth re-release of Skyrim, and also new Pokémon games still being in the works that aren’t free-to-play and pay-to-win. Particularly out of the latter, I’d be more interested in the Arceus game where the player character can get absolutely mauled by wild animals as you’d think would happen, plus when it does inevitably switch to typical turn-based battles, it’s actually using a turn order system where whoever’s faster gets the possibility of more consecutive turns like other RPGs have been doing since before Final Fantasy X. It’s closer to the sort of system I’d put in one of these games if I made one. I’m not sure that I’m excited enough to go buy it, but I’m interested enough to possibly borrow it if I can. It really reminds me of Monster Hunter in ways, as far as structure at least. And yet Monster Hunter has gone and had games like Pokémon previously.
As far as what I’d look into seeing in a new big game of the series, I’ve had some ideas and they come from looking at more recent games. Given I can’t just go making fan games out in the open everywhere because of highly litigious IP holders, I’ll just write the ideas here as the most I could do with them for now, unless I somehow got it done and out completely in secret. If someone wants to swipe these for their own game, even the original IP holders, they’re welcome to. I’m more likely to focus on more original ideas for whatever games and such I come up with so I can do more with them and not be concerned about licenses.
The main story idea comes from how Rotom keeps getting integrated into a bunch of random technology since in Gen 7 the Rotomdex thing happened, apparently so successful it’s just in phones and drones and the whole PC system even now. You have to remember that these are living sentient electric ghosts being shoved into the machines that the humans of that world depend on. What I’m getting at here is at some point these ghost machines could go a bit crazy with how things are run, putting the whole structure of society that’s become dependent on them into chaos as things just explode or drive cars into buildings or whatever. The end result is the setting of this game idea, where humans have been driven out of the cities and towns of a region that had previously fully adopted Rotom technology, making them incredibly dangerous to even think of living in.
The player character, whatever their origin story, starts off in the one big survivor camp that lacks in Rotom technology, or even any technology at all. For whatever reason, they’ve chosen or been chosen to go out into the wild lands overrun with Rotom-possessed machines as well as the usual mix of monsters. Maybe some routine supply run brings a revelation of some kind, could be anything. The core gameplay here would resemble the stuff in the Arceus game, with the player running around an open area in occasional stealth to avoid being electrocuted or whatever. The goal of the area would be to locate the leading Rotom machines and take them down to reclaim a zone for the humans to rebuild. There’d be boss monsters that would need to be defeated in some way and not caught, possibly really giant monsters from the current love of having giant monsters in the games, but could be all sorts of various gimmicks. These would effectively serve as the Gyms, where each area might have its own mechanics to deal with that still make sense in gameplay and culminates in a series of battles or maybe some kinda contest thing leading to any number of boss monsters.
Of course to keep it from being all just a battle against two types, there would have to be a lot of variety in the opponent forms. Something like how the different appliance forms of Rotom that do exist in battle change types, but on a larger scale. Maybe one takes over some humanoid robot and becomes a Trainer, but after being defeated in a traditional battle, the robot Trainer attacks directly and has to be defeated themselves. Then maybe others decide to skip the traditional battle part and it becomes some sort of possessed robot horde that has to be avoided or taken down a bit at a time. Would also be cool to see the return of the weird challenge mode that is the movie battle thing in Black 2 and White 2, given that a lot of strange bosses would be coming up anyway.
After reclaiming an area, the humans would actually start rebuilding it in the game, depending on how wrecked the area was, starting with a post-apocalyptic style just to put roofs over heads and eventually redoing the buildings into proper structures and then getting power set up. Maybe to speed this up some sidequests could be done, also to try to keep hostile Rotom away from any machines in town or find ways to make them more tame. After a zone was rebuilt enough into a proper city or town, it might even set up a typical League structure with a traditional Gym or something like one, to be challenged whenever as an optional deal, possibly as a sort of test run in the narrative to re-establish the region in the global League. Perhaps somewhere in the story there’s also some concern about a Rotom shortage, where they can’t seem to locate any more Rotom to shove into technology while this region’s been recovering from an oversaturation, trying to keep the story to tell the outside world more focused on consequence rather than the potential profit of a Rotom export operation.
It’s a sort of story that may be a bit darker than average, but I would also want to keep it away from being extremely dark and edgy like some romhacks want to do where characters constantly swear and murder each other and do drugs. It’s more just trying to project trends out from previous games and the possible outcomes of it. I’m pretty sure whatever next generations of monsters happen won’t do anything close to this but if they manage to somehow get incredibly close to this idea then that would make for something quite interesting, at least to me. Even if the gameplay didn’t change much in the end and the graphics still ended up looking crusty and a couple console generations back. It’d be an interesting effort at least.