What if you took Soul Silver, and changed all of the rules? And what if by changing all of the rules, all I meant was randomizing the Pokemon in the game? That’s what the Soul Swapped Challenge is, because I just made it up. How random is it? Well, Zoey, our trainer (male character, female identity) chose Swalot as her starter. That Swalot has the ability “Cute Charm” which causes infatuation on contact. So this purple blob of a Pokemon that many consider a simple glutton is actually quite the charmer! That’s when I decided to commit to doing a Soul Swapped run.
When that Swalot grew up to Level 6, it had the opportunity to learn Captivate, a move that targets Pokemon of the opposite gender into lowering their Special Attack. Look at this fancy dude, he’s all about stirring up romance! Unfortunately, among Stealth Rock, Softboiled, Poison Jab, and Gastro Acid, I couldn’t find a spot in Swalot’s moveset for Captivate – as funny as it would have been.
I’ve never used a Swalot before, and perhaps I always thought it a second-rate Muk, but only a half hour into my game, I’ve grown to love this guy. Appropriate that Soul Silver is where I fell in love with Muk, that I’d come to like another Poison-type here in Soul Swapped. Swalot just straight-up roars at everything he sees, and hits it with the Poison Jab all ninja-like, despite his amorphous blobby physique.
The man who lives on Route 30 who isn’t Mr.Pokemon is trying way too hard to impress Zoey, giving her a bunch of nonsense about Apricorns and Apricorn Boxes and yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever Mr. Non Pokemon – we have a Togepi Egg to retrieve. Then again… it might not be Togepi in the egg. On next week’s episode: Zoey gets an Egg!
On Route 117 I catch a Seadra with a Great ball, and on Route 118 I fish a Horsea with a Poke Ball. That means I’m two steps closer to having an all-water team, but not any closer to finding somebody who can learn cut.
I decide that I’m ready to take on the Electric-type gym, which is a huge mistake. I think that Beefy is hot shit, you know? He’s level 20, has a good attack or two; and he can carry this team that’s almost entirely weak to electricity. Like I said, it’s a huge mistake, and Wattson the gym leader totally destroys my team.
Twitch the Magnemite, Beefy the Machop, Roland the Gastly, Rhaena the Seadra, Tree Fiddy the Lapras, and Asha the Goldeen: all gone. In staying with the Nuzlocke rules, each was released, which meant that all of my best team-mates were gone for good.
Thus, ends Nuzlocke Challenge 2. Fitting that there be a dark middle chapter in this Nuzlocke Blog Saga. This second Nuzlocke Challenge was plagued by boredom initially, and was rebooted, and even that didn’t quite fix the problem. I think I’ve just played randomized Pokemon Emerald ROMs just one too many times… And by documenting every little part of the game, I really left nothing to return to on a second playthough. So, I’m glad to announce that what I do next will be completely different. A randomized Pokemon Volt White regular-old playthrough. No Nuzlocke rules: and henceforth it shall be known as… uh… The Volt Switch Challenge! Because it’s Volt White and we Switched things around…heh… and Volt Switch is also a move and… heh. Yes. Exactly! This is what I need!
Today I gave the members of my team, names.
Goldeen was given the name Asha, after Asha Greyjoy, the Kraken’s daughter.
Pichu was given the name Webb, for no good reason, but I liked the name.
Crobat was given the name Brucie, after Bruce Wayne.
Magnemite was given the name Twitch, after TwitchPlaysPokemon gave me the energy to make it through this Nuzlocke.
Lapras was given the name Tree Fiddy, after the South Park joke, and because he needs about tree fiddy.
Nuzleaf got the name Nuzzy, because I couldn’t really think of anything for him.
Messing around with Team Aqua’s plan was the first order of business for the newly christened team. Asha, Webb, and Twitch all got a piece of the action, and I’m really rather upset that I didn’t name these guys sooner. It really helps personify the thing you’re supposed to care about when it has a unique identifier.
Beefy the Machop was caught on Route 110 and took Brucie’s spot on the team. Beefy was met at level 13, and quickly rose to level 19 with some intense training. I’ve mentioned before, and I’ll mention again: I like fighting types. It helps that Route 110 has lots of steel and normal type pokemon for Beefy to beat up on.
In a fight against Brendan, Nuzzy the Nuzleaf was killed by Grobyle’s Fury Cutter. At least I didn’t get attached to him, that might sound harsh but, he was basically the Cut-machine rather than a solid team player. His loss does leave our team without anybody that can use Cut however… I’ll solve this problem next time, hopefully.
Panda gets a call on her new cellphone from an unregistered number. The caller turns out to be her father, who is totally cool with her sailing across Hoenn with some old sailor called Mr.Briney. She registers her father’s number as “DAD NORMAN.” I mean really, what’s up with that Panda? I see what the game is doing, reminding you that your Dad is Norman the gym leader, but come on. “Registered Dad’s Number” sounds a thousand times more human than “Registered DAD NORMAN.”
Cianwood City in Pokemon Silver established some precedent that carried over into Pokemon Emerald’s Dewford Town, which is to say that if you’re going to cross oceans to find a town full of sailors, there’s going to be a fighting-type gym there… for some reason. Panda needs to deliver a letter to a guy named Steven, but can’t without the badge from Dewford’s gym.
I never realized how sweet Goldeen’s “Peck” was until now, I mean, it was kind of crazy to sweep a fighting type gym with a freaking Goldeen, you know? It’s not an incredible late-game attack to hold onto, but I’m really glad Goldeen knows a flying-type move, I’m not even mad that it doesn’t know any water-attacks yet. Not even mad!
Getting the Knuckle Badge was a bit more difficult than spamming Goldeen’s attacks though; I also had to spam Crobat’s “Screech” to lower the insane defense of Brawly’s Makuhita. I like fighting-type Pokemon, and even though I’m not into the bigger meta-game, I like that in order to beat Brawly, I had to put in a Pokemon just to lower another’s defense, and I think part of that is thanks to the stat-boosting nature of fighting-type moves. I mean, all Pokemon have stat-boost moves available, but for fighting-type Pokemon, it’s like, mandatory.
To conclude this log: the captured Pokemon from Dewford’s caves is Golbat, which means we’ll have a backup plan in case anything ever kills Crobat.
This is exactly how I’ve customized Pokemon Emerald for this Nuzlocke Challenge. The starters are random, but all basic Pokemon. I’ve done this because I’d like to have the chance to raise a Pokemon through all stages of evolution, and I have a preference for starting with a basic Pokemon. Also, if a Pokemon normally requires a trade to evolve, that’s no longer the case: any Pokemon can evolve in this game without having to trade (as that’s impossible/difficult to do on an emulator as far as I know). Let’s start.
- Started as a girl, named myself Panda, walked over to Brendan’s house (you remember how much I hate that guy?) well, I forget if I caught this last time but… he says “I heard a gym leader’s kid moved next door, I assumed you’d be a boy.” Stupid boy. Anyways. Let’s move on, I’d rather stick to writing about the experience that is a random starter pick. It’s honestly one of the most exciting things about starting a Nuzlocke.
- My choices were: A Togepi (nope) a Meowth (okay…) and a Goldeen (yes!). I’m going to skip the nicknaming portion of the Nuzlocke; I never thought nicknames got me any more attached to the Pokemon anyways, so my Goldeen will stay, “Goldeen.” Anyways, Panda and Goldeen saved Prof. Birch from none other than an Octillery; a wild Octopus Pokemon known for kidnapping full grown men off of grassy continental roads… obviously, so that was a close one.
- The first wild battle Panda and Goldeen face: a Muk. Pretty dangerous, I mean, Goldeen could be poisoned, or Muk could explode: who knows? Goldeen pecks it to death though, and levels up! Sweet. I forgot where to go to heal Pokemon, and wasted time seeing if Prof. Birch had any way to heal Goldeen. Mom always offers a little rest, way to go Pokemon Emerald mom, allowing naps whenever you please!
- The wild grass right outside of Littleroot Town only has Muks and Crobats. Could you imagine living there? It’d be horrible. Men attacked by Octopi in full daylight? Poisonous bats and globs of toxic waste roaming around 24/7? Littleroot is a nightmare, Oldale town too – unless the Pokemon in the grass north of Oldale are any less dangerous.
- Just so happens? The grass north of Oldale is full of Spindas. That’s not a horrible deal. So if you live in Oldale, yeah you have to deal with the deathtrap grass in the south, but the grass up north is full of harmless – yet creepy – teddy bear Pokemon basically.
- First trainer battle: Panda v. Brendan, Goldeen v. Togepi. Well, that’s not much of a fight actually. Poor Togepi just growled until Goldeen’s peck barely did any damage, but still, it was extremely one-sided. Coincidentally, Goldeen and Togepi are Misty’s Pokemon right? How weird and screwed up would it be for her to pit Togepi against Goldeen? What are you thinking Brendan? This isn’t a Pokemon fit for battle! I feel dirty for even agreeing to that battle. Guh!
- So you know what happens next; a forty-something year old dude allows a bunch of pre-teen children to go out into the world alone to do his research for him, and you’re given Pokeballs to start your adventure. Let’s see if we can catch a Muk, or Crobat – either or would be pretty cool. Whoa, head’s up! There’s a Magnemite in the grass. Using the flying-type move Peck to get it down to low-health takes for-ev-er, but Goldeen hangs in there, and Panda catches her second Pokemon: Magnemite (woo). Route 101: Caught: Magnemite.
- Onto Route 103; the rule of only catching the first Pokemon you encounter holds, and unfortunately, it’s going to be a Spinda on Route 103, or at least, that seems most probable. Whoa, head’s up! There’s a Pichu in the grass. Okay. I’m really underestimating how many types of Pokemon are hiding in the grass here.
- The wild Pichu brings Goldeen down to 12 out of 26 HP, which is to say, near-death. Pretty good for a wild lvl.3 Pokemon. Goldeen still manages to get in the necessary hits, and secure the capture of Panda’s second Pokemon, Pichu. Route 103: Caught: Pichu.
- Panda takes a break at Oldale’s Pokemon center to heal up, reflect on the day’s events, and look forward to the future. Let’s face it, Goldeen is the head of the pack here. The first gym is rock-type, and there’s no way Pichu and Magnemite are going to be in shape for that type of fight. Still, I’m getting ahead of myself. I remember there being a lot of stuff in between Oldale and the first gym: Petalburg? Petaburg? A forest of some sort, and a Devon Corp dude. Team Panda has an endurance run ahead of them, it’s all about keeping Goldeen alive.
The super-randomized Nuzlocke run was not working for me, it was rather joyless actually. So that being said, I’m returning to a bread-and-butter randomized Nuzlocke. That means random starters, and random encounters in the wild, but all Pokemon will keep their types intact, and all trainers will have the Pokemon that they’re supposed to have. Also, because I don’t really care about natures, I’m going to forget all of that information about IV’s or EV’s or whatever. And, for what it’s worth, I’m going to try to upload a few videos here and there. That being said, let’s reboot: the next post will be called Nuzlocke Challenge 2: Log One (Take Two).