I’ve taken a bit longer to post this than I was hoping it would but the loss of the shiny Starly really hurt me. I contemplated stopping after the last entry, but then I watched other shiney fails on YouTube and realised that losing a shiny Starly isn’t the end of the world as the many videos show it could have been a legendary that has only 1HP, that gets hit with recoil. Another reason for the delay is how little time I’ve had to actually play the game over the last few weeks. I did try to play a bit whilst at Cardiff Anime Con a few weekends ago, if you were there you might have seen me sneaking a few minutes here and there (and may have even criticised my 2DS, I prefer it so no excuses needed), but my battery didn’t have enough charge to properly play.
I picked back up on route 203 and not wanting to risk another encounter with a stupid Starly I headed straight for Oreburgh Gate. On entering the cave a hiker gives you the HM for Rock Smash, but as I still only have BA Baracus I decide not to use it yet, instead I decided to wait until I could use it after getting the badge needed to use it outside of battle. The trainers in the cave aren’t a match for BA: as he is my only Pokemon, he is close to being three times the level; so even the Psyduck isn’t a match despite the type advantage, the wild Pokemon don’t fair much better either.
On arriving in Oreburgh City a Youngster shows you to the gym, where despite probably being video gaming’s most impatient character ever, The Boss seems to have waited around just to tell me that he has won a badge and the gym leader has gone to the Oreburgh Mine, then runs off. I was both glad and annoyed that I didn’t get to battle him as I’d be at a disadvantage without a trip to the Pokemon Centre but I could do with the XP and Money (having to buy potions is expensive). Instead of heading straight for the mine I decided to head North to explore the long grass, on taking my first step into the grass it initiates an encounter and I can’t believe my luck: it’s a Machop! My luck in this game was finally changing! I hit it with ember to weaken it, only to get a critical hit and make it faint... I try to ignore this; after all I encountered it on my first step, they probably have a high encounter rate here. So, I carried on running around only to encounter Geodude after Geodude with an occasional Kricketot thrown in. This game had decided to toy with me it just seems to know what I’m doing and throwing as many Geodude shaped blocks in my way, and just as I conceded defeat and decided to head to the mine I finally encounter another Machop. Taking no risks I decide to throw Pokeball after Pokeball at it until it gave up and ‘decided’ to join my team after about ten balls. I named him ‘HM Murdock’, taught him Rock Smash, and I was halfway to completing my A-Team! Feeling pleased with myself I headed out of the long grass only to encounter another Machop, using my newly acquired HM Murdock I weakened the wild Machop, and ‘Face’ Joined the team almost completing the A-Team lineup and as a benefit from all the Geodude encounters BA Baracus knows Mach Punch which will be handy in the gym.
I healed up and headed for the mine, putting Face as my lead Pokemon to try and even up the level a little bit. On entering the mine I learnt two massive things about this challenge I’ve taken on, 1) Geodude’s are great for leveling up fighting Pokemon and 2) Zubat’s are the vilest creature known to man! They are super effective, can poison, can confuse, and they don’t let you run away. Even switching in BA has become a risk as the Zubat’s get a free hit to confuse or poison you. Zubat deserves every meme ever aimed at it!
Other than being shown Rock Smash, and the endless Zubat’s trying to kill my Pokemon, the Mine is pretty much pointless for me in this challenge; I don’t really need to be shown Rock Smash; to be honest the name is pretty much self explanatory. Colin and Mason do offer some XP for my new team members but they aren’t really a challenge, so I dispatch these guys and head back to the gym trying to avoid Zubat encounters, repels are going to be another necessary purchase.
The Oreburgh Gym has two trainers, Roark the gym leader, and a useless long path that allows you to avoid the trainer battles. By this point in the game the avoidance option seems redundant as any starter should be able to easily dispatch the trainers rock type pokemon for easy XP and Pokedollars, if not you’re doing something wrong (like stupidly playing through the game with one type of Pokemon like me). Even Roark and his terrible pun name isn’t really a challenge; using HM Murdock and Face I take out his Geodude and Onyx without him using Stealth Rock. Then I switch in BA Baracus who Mach Punches Craidos back to the stone age and getting me a Coal Badge and the ability to use Rock Smash outside of battle, I guess it’s lucky he showed me how to use it after all.
Check back soon for the next installment, where I try to complete my A-Team line up