Pokémon Sword & Shield has undermined online battles with a reduced combat time of 20 minutes and it remains unchanged in the Diamond & Pearl remakes.
While the general feeling surrounding Pokémon Shiny Diamond & Shiny Pearl Continuing to improve, the games have retained the extremely problematic 20-minute online fight timer from previous games. While Pokémon Sword and Shield will remain the official series platform for the World Championships, players will continue to play online with each other in the BDSP Sinnoh remade and the current timer will continue to be a problem.
Competitive combat has become an increasingly important part of the Pokemon community since the release of Pokémon Diamond & Pearl in 2007. Competitive Pokemon started out as a fairly straightforward 6v6 singles format in which players mastered the game’s hidden mechanics to maximize the potential of their teams. But as time has passed and the series embraced this part of the community via the official VGC doubles format, the games have streamlined these mechanics to make it easier for players to get started in competitive play. And while it has never been easier for players to start playing Pokemon in competition, a sudden change in online battles has completely undermined this part of the game.
With Pokémon Sword and Shield came the introduction of a 20 minute fight timer and it came back in Pokémon BDSP, according to Twitter user KazoWAR. In the original version Pokémon Diamond & Pearl, battle timers didn’t even exist in online battles and it wasn’t until later that a 60 minute timer was introduced. This was a necessary change as it limited battles that eventually turned into long stall wars where nothing really happened. However, that timer was reduced to 20 minutes and it instantly killed the 6v6 singles format while putting a serious blow to competitive wrestling as a whole. It’s just not enough time to complete a full battle, which can often take up to 45 minutes.
Pokémon BDSP’s 20-Minute Battle Timer Should Be Reduced to 60
Last year, Pokemon YouTuber Pokeaim brought together a group of popular members of the competitive fighter community to discuss the issues with the 20 Minute Fight Timer. Like many other games and series, Pokemon has a large community around content creation and although nuzlocke-type playthroughs are extremely popular, competitive fights have always been a driving force in these communities. The 20 minute fight timer did so much damage to competitive play that despite how easy it was to build a competitive squad, it made it more appealing for players to keep fighting. Pokemon Fight, an online battle simulator, than to play on real Nintendo Switch titles.
Pokeaim’s video can be found above or here.
A popular competitive format known as the Draft League featured groups of Pokemon YouTubers who came together and crafted completely unique Pokémon teams before facing off in a massive tournament to determine the champion. It was an extremely interesting form of content where skilled players were forced to devise unique and unconventional strategies on a weekly basis to defeat their opponents and it was a lot of fun to watch, to the point that many players led their own. Individual draft leagues with friends or others in the community to play it for themselves. But because the 20 minute timer made it almost impossible to end a competition Pokemon battle, this whole format has been erased, and it looks like this will continue to be an issue in Pokémon BDSP.
The 20 minute fight timer is something that absolutely needs to be changed. Whether it’s the old-fashioned 60-minute timer or some sort of chess-style timer that doesn’t continue during animations, the creative team behind Pokemon must remedy this situation for competitive gameplay. As long as the 20-minute timer remains in online play in its current form, the competitive potential of Pokémon Shiny Diamond & Shiny Pearl will be suffocated.
Next: Pokémon Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl Postgame Sounds Rough
Sources: Twitter / KazoWAR, YouTube / Pokeaim
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