Project 151: Slow going but making progress

My last Project 151 post was almost a month ago (seems like a year ago). Since several weeks have passed, you might assume that I’d have LeafGreen in the can by now, but the truth is, I’m faaaaar from done.

Four weeks equals five hours of gameplay. ...sounds about right for me.
Four weeks equals five hours of gameplay. …sounds about right for me.

When I do have time to submit to LeafGreen’s charms, it’s very hard to come out of that stupor! I get its addictive nature now — there’s just something to exploring and battling and capturing that make the game very hard to put down at a moments notice. Those few hours I managed to put in simply flew by!

Anyhoo, even though I’ve not played my Pokemon-flavored ass off over the past weeks, I think I’ve knocked out some important objectives. Here’s the rundown of where my progress stands today:

  • Obtained the running shoes
  • Entered (and thoroughly disliked) Mt. Moon
  • Battled Nerd Miguel; chose Helix Fossil
  • Got to and explored Cerulean City
  • Defeated trainers on Nugget Bridge
  • Defeated Misty; obtained 2nd badge
  • Rescued the fanatic Bill; obtained S. S. Anne ticket
  • Found Underground Path to Vermillion City
  • Boarded S. S. Anne

While I think that’s a fine list, you may be think “Oh. My. Gawd. She forgot this and didn’t go here and didn’t battle so and so!” Well, please tell me! In games like this, I tend to speed through things, and I often forget to take the time to search of special secrets or tools that might help make things easier. For instance, I understand that I had the option somewhere to face Lars again, but I never ran across him. I’m also rather baffled about CUT. Several people made mention of it in Cerulean City but I’ve yet to find…it. Is it an it? Is it an ax? I’m hoping it’s an ax that will help me get through those little trees that block paths. Also, I’ve read that some characters will offer to sell you low-level Pokemon, but no one I’ve talked to has made me such an offer. Yet.

Mt. Moon. I don;t even want to talk about it. And I don't want to go back. Ever.
Mt. Moon. I don’t even want to talk about it. And I don’t want to go back. Ever.

But by far my worst transgression involves the Pokemon themselves, namely my lack of capturing new ones and leveling up current ones.  On my last post, fminuzzi commented that I could use low-level Pokemon at the start of battle and then switch out to Charmeleon (currently at level 32). I had been following her advice without incident, and it worked quite well to a point, but the random enemies I’m meeting now are way too strong for my Pokemon, several of which remain in single digit levels. So I’m ending up with dead Pokemon before they’re able to get in even a single hit. Maybe I’m doing something wrong, but I think I need to head back to find some weaker Pokemon to battle first. I know that these battles won’t offer as much XP, but it’s hardly worth the effort if I end up poor and in Pokemon Centers every five minutes!

[Insert Zelda reference here because all I wanna to is cut the grass...]
[Insert Zelda reference here because all I wanna to is cut the grass…]
As for capturing the Pokemon, I don’t know — ten hours in, is twelve good or pathetic? Prof. Oak tells me I still have “work to do,” but outside of trainers’ Pokemon, I’m not finding many unique Pokemon in those damned grassy areas. For whatever reason, I had a terrible time trying to catch a Geodude in Mt. Moon, and I eventually gave up. And maybe I should have been more interested catching all those bug Pokemon early on. Right now, my most exciting acquisitions have been a Bellsprout and a Meowth, which I’ve no clue how to best use. I’m still trying to figure out the whole schema behind forming a “perfect” team, as well as what types to best use in certain battles. (Until Misty, I had zero clue that Grass types worked well again Water types. I had a hard time letting go of the “fire puts out water” notion, because it usually does. In real life. Lesson #1: Pokemon is NOT real life.)

Okay, thanks. But you still nearly killed my whole team.
Okay, thanks. But you still nearly killed my whole team.

So at this point, I still have a lot to learn and a ways to go. In this race however, the hare can have his day. I’m content with being the tortoise. (Or Blastoise. Although I guess it’s too  late for that.)

Well at least your raising...your...FACE!  Jerk.
Well at least your raising…your…FACE! Jerk.

 

 

11 thoughts on “Project 151: Slow going but making progress”

  1. I wouldn’t sweat missing things. The later in the game you are, the more places you can go to, so you can always have a run through later (once you have more HMs, for example).

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    1. That’s good to keep in mind, thanks! I’m starting to think that I might have to give the game a go twice — once now just to get a feel for everything and once to really delve into all the secrets and special things.

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  2. Did you talk to Bill yet? His house is all the way to the right after you cross Nugget bridge. He doesn’t do much, he changes “someones pc” to “bills pc” in the menus and i think he’ll trade you a Lickitongue for…something. As for leveling pokemon, I always wound up relying on my starter for a majority of the fights, then catching stronger and stronger pokemon so that they would be at comparable levels to the stuff I was fighting and thus easier to level up. However, for really low level pokemon, you can just have them as your party leader, then immediately switch to charmeleon when the battle starts. they don’t have to actually fight in order to get the XP, they just need to be present for the battle.

    Your roster sounds fine for that point in the game, all the really good pokemon don’t start showing up until after gym 3 I think. As for their rock-paper-scissors system, it does take some thought, but it all makes sense to a certain degree. Plants absorb water -> water puts out fire -> fire burns plants…etc. Some of them are a stretch, like water > Rock, i guess because water erodes rock? … i dunno…

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    1. When you put the system that way, it make much more sense, thank you! I would say yes, water erodes rock, but who knows what they were really thinking.

      I did find Bill — it’s possible that he offered me a trade, but I don’t recall. (Though I’m thinking now that he wanted to trade for something I didn’t have.) At this point, I’ve backtracked a bit and will probably spend my next few sessions leveling up a couple teammates. But I also just “caught” (haha) onto that trick of garnering higher level Pokemon and then adding them to the team. And I have done that immediate switching thing (when I remember). The whole game has really been much more interesting and fun than I thought it would be, so look forward to whatever is in store.

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  3. Cut is a ‘Hidden Machine’ which allows Pokemon to cut down trees once you’ve obtained the corresponding badge that allows you to use the move outside of battle. HM’s are an annoying aspect of Pokemon as most aren’t useful in combat, so they end up taking an move slot for little reason. Typically people have HM whores who can have multiple HM abilities (for example, surf lets you ride a Pokemon on water), though they lack much use in a real combat situation.

    And yes, this is a JRPG, so you’ll likely need to grind up your other Pokemon a bit too get back on the game’s difficulty scale. Don’t go overboard or it’ll be too easy!

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    1. Y’know, it’s a little embarrassing to admit how impatient I’ve become about leveling up in games. I’ve played so many recently where I don’t even pay attention to leveling up outside of adding a few new tricks to my arsenal! Whether that’s good or bad, I don’t know, but I’m pretty sure you’ve just inspired an upcoming (UWG) blog post in the subject… 🙂

      Thanks for the info about Cut. I’m being somewhat lazy about taking time to learn about the TMs, and soon there’ll be HMs. That a lot to keep track of! But I like the idea of using a Pokemon just for those purposes — thanks for that bit of advice as well. (I also blush thinking about how I once labeled Pokemon as a simple kids game. It’s simple in principle but not in practice!)

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