Game Freak producer Junichi Masuda recently sat down with Game Informer to chat about all things Pokemon. One of the most interesting points raised in the interview was why the company is skeptical to bring radical changes to the battle system.
When we were making the original games, Red and Blue, we really tried a lot of things, a lot of different battle systems and a lot of different aspects for the battle systems. We even tried things like getting rid of the concept of hit points. But we ended up with the battle system that went into the final game and has evolved over time in the current games.
Masuda goes on to explain that its mainly down to maintaining accessibility.
One of the base concepts of Pokémon is to really make it playable for anyone. Anyone can pick up the game and play it and enjoy it. By having a lot more action-packed gameplay, or some kind of gameplay that requires timed button presses, it might be a little bit too difficult for some people, especially for people who aren’t used to playing games. The idea of being able to go into a battle and think carefully about what moves you want to use, to really have the best tactics in battle is something we really value highly in the Pokémon games.
He is interested in the frantically fast-paced aspect a time limit would bring as the player selects moves, but concludes with his decision to not include this in the game, as Game Freak doesn’t want to rush the player when they should be thinking strategically.
In the Pokémon World Championships, there is a time limit on when you can choose your moves and whatnot. That is one way that the battles can be enjoyed, at the high-level play having a limited amount of time. Similar to chess, we really want players to be able to have enough time to think about which moves they want to use, and not really feel like they’re being rushed and I think that style of battle is really what works. It’s what we think is best for the Pokémon games right now at least.
As a lover of the catchable critters, even I think that a new gameplay overhaul would breathe new life into the franchise. But then again, I agree with Masuda that the gameplay is still great and doesn’t necessarily need fixing.
He also discusses other interesting topics, like choosing to go with numbered titles for Black and White 2 (surprisingly its not because they ran out of colors), the decision to stay on the original DS as opposed to 3DS and the prospect of a Pokemon MMO. Read the full interview right here.
[Source: Game Informer]