I had actually managed to stick to one of these posts per day, something I didn't think I'd be able to do. But this game is pretty damn addictive, as with many Pokemon games. Valkyria Chronicles II has been neglected for a few days, but I will get back to it at some point.
Last time, I took on Nimbasa City and it's electric gym leader, Elesa.
Moving on, you get an introduction to triple battles or rotation battles, in the route to the west of Nimbasa depending on the version you are playing, and they are quite interesting, with a lot of strategy and options coming into them. I liked the rotation battle, as you can rotate the pokemon to the left or right in before making a move. So a good team and moves as well as prediction as to the moves the opponent is going to make become very important. I wonder if these were ever done in competitive battles, I may have to look on youtube and see. Anyway, this guy's team just so happened to have shared weaknesses to electric, and Magnemite was very effective against his whole team, so he did most of the work. Still fun though.
This time, its a short trip across Driftveil Drawbridge to get to Driftveil City, where the next gym battle awaits. I don't really feel ready to take it on though, so I'm going to do some messing around on the routes near Driftveil, perhaps Chargestone Cave and evolving my Magneton. That depends though...Magneton vs Magnezone. Well, at this stage, the moves from level up in BW2 look the same, so I don't really miss out on anything by evolving at this level.
I don;t remember if I talked about this last time, but there are trainers that you can battle more than once in this game. Each time you enter the route and come across them, you can battle them. Their pokemon stay the same level, but it can be really useful for fast battles against pokemon that you know are going to be there. There are possible uses for getting lots of money, or EV training pokemon. These, from what I've seen so far, are Pokemon Breeders. There is one in Lostlorn Forest,
Pokemon Breeder Yuri, and one, Pokemon Breeder Koharu on route 6. Theres another in the entrance to the desert area where the houses are, but I couldn't find the route or name of them.
I spent quite a while, most of a morning grinding in Chargestone Cave and the dark grass outside it. Theres a house with someone who fully heals your pokemon, so you can stay there for as long as you like without having to backtrack too much to heal.
There are some really cool pokemon to be found in Chargestone Cave, Ferroseed, Voltik, Klink, Tynamo are the ones that I found. I really want to try out a Ferroseed at some point, but resisted this time, as my team doesn't have a space for him, it would be my third steel pokemon, and I would have way too many weaknesses to ground pokemon.
My team is perhaps still a bit underlevelled, but at the moment looks like:
Growlithe "Ghost" lv31, Lucario "Genji" lv31, Magnezone "Iron Giant" lv31, Dewott "Barioth" lv32, Krokorok "Terra" lv32. I'm aiming to get my Barioth evolved at 36 before I take on the gym leader, but we shall see.
Gym # 5 - Ground
The first battle sees me fighting against a trainer with one pokemon, which is a lv31 Baltoy. So far so good. Trainers with one pokemon usually have higher than average pokemon compared to other trainers, so if this guy is lv31, Barioth shouldn't have too many problems. I start off with Water Pulse, and OHKO (onehit KO) it :) I went with Water Pulse over Razor Shell as Water Pulse is a special move, whereas Razor Shell is physical. And if I remember rightly, Baltoy is stronger against physical moves. I may well be wrong though, its a long time since I was into the competitive side of things.
Next trainer in the gym is a guy with a few different pokemon. Drilbur lv29, which only takes one hit to finish, another Baltoy, this time lv29, and a Sandile lv29. None of them take more than one water attack from Barioth, thankfully. Sandile is an interesting one. I thought I'd take one along on my team, and it seems to have really strong attack, but can't take hits at all. Bit of a glass cannon, it looks like. So I'll need to keep him nicely levelled so he can outspeed things and finish them off before they can retaliate. I do want to keep him on my team until the end though, if I can.
This place looks confusing, with lots of walkways, elevators and its all shrouded in darkness...the next battle involves a Sandile lv30, Drilbur lv 30. After these, Barioth levels up to lv33 and wants to learn Aqua Jet. I really like this move, its like a physical water move that strikes first like quick attack. If I remember rightly, this came in really useful against the Elite 4 battles.
After a bit of backtracking, looking around the gym, I find another trainer, a worker with a lv30 Drilbur and lv30 Baltoy. Both of which don't really pose much of a risk. I think from now, I'll put the exp share on another pokemon to try and benefit something on my team other than Dewott, even though I want it to evolve (I don't think evolution is possible in the gym at this point)
Another worker has a Drilbur lv31, and this guy outspeeds me, going for Dig, which takes a good 40 or 45% off my HP...Gadz, if the gym leader is anything like this, I may struggle. On the next turn, I decide to go for the newly acquired Aqua Jet, which oneshots it thankfully. This could be useful....
This place is a maze, like I said, and its probably a good idea following a video or an ASCII chart/map so you can find all of the battles. In the top right corner of the gym, there is another battle with a guy who has Sandile lv31, and I'm confident about oneshotting these guys. Just Drilburs I've got to watch out for.
After lots of confused wandering, I find the boss's platform, but I'm sure there are a few platforms I've not been to yet, so I eventually find the last(?) guy, who has a lv30 Baltoy (I kind of messed up. Aqua Jet didn't oneshot it, so it selfdestructed on me, and nearly finished me off) and a Sandile lv30.
The Gym leader starts off with a Krokorok lv31. Based on what I know about this thing, I know it is weak defensively. I wanted to check the stats of mine, and accidentally swapped my own Krokorok in. Urgh...It hits me with Torment, and I switch back in Barioth and go for Water Pulse to oneshot it and move on to the next pokemon, a Sandslash lv31. I'll go Water Pulse...no, I forgot that I got Torment used on Barioth. So Razor Shell is my next choice, and I get outrun by the Sandslash, that does Fury Cutter for some fairly minimal damage. My Razor Shell does about 75% of the Sandslash's HP. Aqua Jet gets priority, and finishes it off easily. The leader's next and final pokemon is fairly scary. It is an Excadrill lv33 (the evolved Drilbur.) At this stage, I'm not underlevelled, my Barioth is lv34, but I know this thing will hit him like a truck. I would normally go for Aqua Jet and get the first strike, but Torment is still in play, meaning I can't use the same move twice in a row...I go for Water Pulse and hope I can survive..he chooses Rock Slide, taking me down to 31/102 HP. I wasn't fully healed before this, so this isn't too bad damage wise. But he gets the flinch on me, meaning I don't get to use a move this turn. Rock Slide has a chance of inflicting flinch with each hit...I think I have to heal up at this stage, and use a hyper potion. He hits me with a Rock Slide, and then next turn another Rock Slide, and another flinch... Troll..I have to heal again, as 25HP wasn't enough to survive another hit. Finally after this heal, I get to hit him with Water Pulse, and this opens up Aqua Jet as available. His HP went to within a few left, and a healing berry triggered, healing him to orange (around 15 or 20%) Mine is at 28/102 (around 20 or 25%) The thing is, I know I can't take another Rock Slide. But if I get off Aqua Jet without him using a potion, I will finish him off. If he gets off a potion and I 'waste' my Aqua Jet, he will probably outrun me and kill me off. I feel pretty confident he'll heal up, so I go for Razor Shell. I guessed wrong, and he Slashes me to kill off Barioth. I send in Iron Giant, knowing it is a terrible matchup, but I want to try and get a Thunder Wave...wait. after realising that Excadrill is a part ground type, I'm not going to get any kind of paralysis from Magnezone (Ground are unaffected by Electric) so I go for Mirror Shot, and my Quick Claw activates, meaning he goes first. I thought that would be it, badge won. But the attack missed, and he uses an attack I've not seen yet, Bulldoze, which was super effective and brought me down to 1HP (Sturdy activated, meaning I survived the hit) I decide that Iron Giant can't really do much in this battle, but I might get lucky with Quick Claw again, I certainly have had a shitload of bad luck so far against Excadrill. So I go for Mirror Shot again, and quickly get Rock Slided to death. I'm sort of running out of options now, so I decide to go into Genji, the Lucario and hope that I outrun him or at least survive a hit. I have a few options, Counter, which if he hit me with a physical move, would probably win me the battle. Bone Rush, which wouldn't have STAB (a boost from the same type pokemon i.e. ground for Bone Rush) but would give me a neutral attack or super effective against his steel typing, I'm not sure. Force Palm is a stronger attack, and would be super effective against his Steel type, but might be cancelled out against his ground type. Quick Attack would mean I go first, but wouldnt do much damage against his steel type. I think I'll do best with Force Palm, so go with that....he chooses Rock Slide, and this only does about 8 damage. Force Palm takes out the rest of it's HP and wins me the badge. Jeez, that was intense! A really interesting battle, and one that I perhaps overthought. But my no-lose streak continues on, so perhaps it is worth taking your time and analysing :)
Protip #5 - I suppose considering the moves you have, what they do in terms of damage, accuracy and secondary effects of moves is important eg. the chance of a flinch on that move Rock Slide. Also important and coming into that, are the stats you have compared to the opponent. For example, I saw my Dewott getting outrun by Excadrill, so I looked through my squad afterwards to see if I had any pokemon with higher speed than Dewott in the hope I could outrun Excadrill to finish him off. Also if you have a pokemon on your team that is similar or the same as the opponent, check the stats of your one. They will be similar (not the same due to IVs and EVs that will be different.) Looking at my Krokorok, I saw that it was very weak to special moves, and used that information to oneshot it with Water Pulse as opposed to Razor Shell or Aqua Jet. There is a surprising amount of depth to the pokemon games, and its never a bad thing to take a few minutes to consider the best option, especially in the more difficult battles.
Play Time - 51:39
Pokedex - Obtained: 50, Seen: 90
Gym Badges - 5