When I set out on this quest quite literally almost a year ago, I was determined. I had every intention of catching every single Pokemon in existence, and creating a collection of every form of every species. The Pokedex itself was not enough, I truly wanted to be the very best. Well friends, I can gladly say that I've done it. My copy of Y now has 24 of its PC boxes full of all 718 individual species of Pokemon, all who exist for nothing other than to be my collection. Am I the very best now?
This is the finale to a series of posts I've been doing (very infrequently). The previous parts can all be found as follows:
I hope anyone who has followed along, or maybe even just popped in once or twice has gotten some enjoyment out of it - writing about this adventure has been pretty fun for me. Anyway, here it goes: Part 7 of my quest to become the best - The Finale!
Gotta Catch ‘Em All!
When I last wrote an entry for this series, I had basically done everything interesting there was to do, and was beginning the long, looong, boring final stretch. I had all the Legendary Pokemon, had transferred everything up to Y, and through lots of research and double checking had determined that I would be able to finish everything right there in the new Kalos region. The vast majority of the work left was breeding and evolving, with some occasional ‘mans that needed to be caught out in the wild.
This process moves fairly quick when you get in the rhythm of it, but that doesn't mean it didn't take forever, just from the sheer volume of species I had to fill in. This was because I in most cases would have one form (Conkeldurr for example), but wanted to have all of them (Timburr, Gurdurr, and Conkeldurr). I employed every trick I know of to make everything as fast as possible, and here’s what a typical ‘round’ of breeding and evolving looked like.
Get to the daycare. Talonflame is my flyer of choice in Y, and has the added benefit of Flame Body - a really handy ability that makes Eggs in your party hatch more quickly when he’s with you.
Put one of the guys I needed to breed in the daycare. I had a Ditto on permanent stay there, ready to make Eggs with whoever I needed. As a side note, when I finished the collection, the Ditto had increased from level 34 to 58.
Ride back and forth on the bike until I got the number of eggs I needed from that guy (1 or 2 depending on how many forms there are of that specific Pokemon). Then swap him out for one of the others I need to breed.
Once I had a party full of Eggs, pop the Hatching Power Level 3, and ride back and forth on the bike some more, until they all hatch.
Now its time to evolve them. I would figure out which ones need to evolve, and how they evolve. The most common mechanism is just levelling, of course.
Fly to Lumiose City. Put away Talonflame, and pull out up to 4 guys that need to evolve by leveling (making sure to select the ones that were already the highest level - let the newly bred level 1’s be your lowest form if possible).
Equip the Lucky Egg on whoever needs it the most, and use Exp. Point Power Level 3.
Restaurant Le Wow. It costs 90,000 PokeBucks to enter, but after a series of double battles you actually come out ahead from prize money, and by selling the Balm Mushrooms you receive at the end. All of these trainers’ Pokemon are over level 60, so the experience is pretty good.
Repeat until your eyes bleed.
There are 2 main reasons I ended up going with Le Wow over Elite Four/Champion runs. The first, and most important, is that E4 runs take a lot of time, and everyone you bring in will gain a crap-ton of experience. This is great, if you need them all to get up to high levels, but when some of them only need to get to level 20 to evolve, a lot of that experience ends up “wasted”, because it could be going to one of the 200 other things you need to evolve. Le Wow being quick means you can switch guys out more often, which in this case is ideal. The other reason is that one use of the Exp. Point Power actually lasts for the duration of all the battles in Le Wow, so you can get that bonus from each opponent. In the E4 it won’t last more than one battle probably, and you don’t have enough energy to use it for more than 2 of the 5 battles.
Of course, there are plenty of Pokemon that evolve by other means, but there weren't many that were an issue. Ones that evolve by happiness were annoying, because I was too lazy to look up the best way to go about raising that, so I just leveled them up to ridiculous levels until they finally evolved. Happiness by brute force.
Other situations call for evolution stones, trading (with or without specific items), levelling with a specific move, and leveling in a specific part of the world. Pancham evolves into Pangoro after level 32, but only if there is a Dark type in your party. Inkay evolves into Malamar starting at level 30, but you have to level him up while holding the 3DS upside down. Pokemon!
But, of course, the final, final Pokemon I had to evolve, the 718th species for my collection, just had to be the one that gave me some trouble. Anyone who read my last post knows that I recently trained a Goodra for competitive battling, so it seems like it shouldn't be a big deal, but I NEEDED another one. I needed to have one that was in my collection, and was not needed for battling. Goodra, being the drippy, slimy Dragon type, evolves from Sliggoo starting at level 50, but only when in the rain. This doesn't work if you use Rain Dance, or have a Pokemon with Drizzle. It has to be natural rain in the overworld, which is totally random. After searching every route and town with a level 50 Sliggoo and a Rare Candy in tow, desperate to finish my collection, I had to do the last thing I wanted to do. I turned off my 3DS and waited until later.
Thankfully, when I came back to it that evening, I found it raining in the swampy Route 14. I watched with glee as my Sliggoo achieved its final form, and I placed it in my box, achieving my goal once and for all. I am the very best, and you can’t tell me otherwise.
The question any sane person would ask me now is: was it worth it? The answer, in complete and total honesty, is a definite yes. This is something I've wanted to do for a long time, and I am so glad I finally did it. I can’t say for sure that I’ll keep the Pokemon collection going forever, but for the near future at least, I can say that I caught them all. Feels good.
I’ll leave you with one other piece of info that I collected before writing this. Below are the versions of the games I currently own, and the play times on each file.
Y - 175 hours
Black - 42 hours
White - 101 hours
Soul Silver - 10 hours
Heart Gold - 37 hours
Platinum - 209 hours
Pearl - 56 hours
Diamond - 100 hours
Emerald - 40 hours
Fire Red - The file I originally played of this has been deleted since. I would estimate it was at least 15 hours.
Of course, all of this time was not directly in service to this endeavor, but you can see that I have played quite a lot of Pokemon. Without an accurate time for Fire Red, and considering that Soul Silver and Pearl were actually my wife’s files that I cannibalized for my collection, my play time across all of these games was still definitely over 700 hours in total. Realistically it was probably closer to 725+ with Fire Red, and any resetting that happened across all the games.
And with that, it’s over. I probably won’t play any more Pokemon for a while, but I do have a few guys picked out that I want to train up some day. Until then, I’ll be.. you know, doing something else? Thanks to all who read and commented during this series!
The Very Best There Ever Was,