I am a mainline Pokemon scrub. Having only previously played Pokemon X and Pokemon Ultra Moon, I stumbled through both of those games with the handful of Pokemon I caught along the way. I was nowhere near close to finishing up my Pokedex in either.
In the world of Pokemon Go, it’s a different story. Having played religiously every day since launch, I’m a max level trainer with over 1,100 high-level-high-IV Pokemon in storage. With PvP just around the corner, I’m ready to scrap with anyone!
These two worlds collide in Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu/Let’s Go Eevee. Once you hit Fuchsia City, you unlock the ability to transfer your Pokemon Go buddies into Let’s Go Pikachu/Let’s Go Eevee. I just got there and I’m standing outside the building where the transfer takes place. I can send over a complete Pokedex full of high-IV Pokemon right now. But do I want to?
Though I haven’t played many mainline Pokemon games in the past, the thing that has always made an impact on me was the connection I built with my team. I never had the best squad, but it was my squad. I vividly remember Lucario being the ringer of my team, smashing countless other Pokemon with Dragon Rage and carrying me to victory. Lucario might not be the best Pokemon around, but it was my Pokemon and we fought our way to the top in a world that was out to tear us down.
There’s a level of comradery that develops between you and your Pokemon in the main series that largely doesn’t exist in Pokemon Go. Before you can even evolve your starter Pokemon in that game, you will have caught and transferred dozens of the same type to Professor Willow. And by the time you have enough candy, you probably have already caught a higher-level version of your starter with higher IVs, essentially making it useless. In a sense, they function more like commodities than companions.
Transferring Pokemon into Let’s Go Pikachu/Let’s Go Eevee doesn’t necessarily give you an advantage, per se. Sure, you can instantly finish your Pokedex, but Pokemon transfer at the level they’re in within Pokemon Go. My highest-level Pokemon are level 40, which is actually a bit under-leveled for where you’d want them to be by the time you’re in Fuchsia City. For most, it’s going to be a grind to get your Pokemon Go friends up to snuff.
By adding all of my Pokemon Go friends to Let’s Go Pikachu/Let’s Go Eevee, I’m scared that I’ll neuter my favourite aspect of the main series games. How much does the Kangaskhan that I’ve fought with for 20 hours in Let’s Go Pikachu/Let’s Go Eevee mean when I can upload a better one right now?
I will engage with the transfer mechanic in some form. At the very least, transferring is required in order to unlock the mythical Meltan. But how far do I want to go? Shiny Pokemon seem like a safe bet, as the likelihood of me catching all of those in the game seems slim. Same for the legendary birds. Maybe a Mewtwo perhaps, as it’s probably a late-game catch at best and I probably won’t go back to play this one much after I’m done the story. Everything else though? I don’t know just yet.