Review: The Isle of Armor, the newest Pokémon island in the world

Review: The Isle of Armor, the newest Pokémon island in the world

The first additional content for the Pokmon franchise, The Isle of Armor, focuses on solving problems with Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield

For the first time since Pokmon Red and Pokmon Green24 years ago, the franchise of the most famous pocket monsters in videogames receives some additional paid content or, in other words, an expansion pack for the main journey. The DLC was divided into two parts, the first being called The Isle of Armor, already available and that we analyzed in this text, and The Crown Tundra, which will be launched by the end of November, and arrive to add adventure of Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shieldgames Nintendo Switch.

At the cost of R $ 125.39 (or US $ 30.00 in the American online store), the package contains a new region to explore, with a little story of its own, the return of several old Pokmon, a new monster, new items and new moves for battles. THE Game Freak, developer of Pokmon games, took care of resolving some of the complaints that arose in the base games. There are stumbles on the way, but the balance is positive.

Arriving Isle of Armor

As soon as the expansion pack is purchased and the game updated, when you open it, the message appears that a new area is available. To get there, just head to the train station in Wedgehurst and speak to the local staff. It is worth noting that, if there is a Pokmon Slowpoke, talk to him first for a chance to capture him and make way for Isle of Armor.

Pass image for the Isle of Armor. The instruction pass for the Isle of Armor is shown as soon as the game starts.

Basically, the new island is a big Wild Area, the region so named in Sword and Shield to designate the open areas where strong Pokmon, real-world trainers and raid points can be found.

Arrive new charming region from the first moment. The large area has parts of the sea, countryside, forest and caves, and everything can be explored from the beginning without limits, although it is better for the player to head to the destination as directed by the game's history (we'll talk more about this in this text).

The work carried out by Game Freak in the design of the Isle of Armor. Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield were severely criticized by critics and fans because of the Wild Area of games, which, despite being of considerable size, were basically plain with little to see and do.

A field with wild Taurus and Miltank and, in the background, a stairway to a mountain. The scenarios of the Isle of Armor are more varied than those of the main games.

For the DLC, the developer tried to leave the set of islands that make up the Isle of Armor considerably more interesting. Now, there is a large region of sea, with small portions of land, and a larger island, which has a mountain, a small desert and even a forest. The geography of the place is not empty and mountainous, on the contrary. There are always many wild monsters roaming around, and the forest is probably the most beautiful place in this generation's Pokmon games.

In addition to the aesthetics of the environments, Game Freak also gave a touch to the main character. When purchasing the game, a special DLC costume can be obtained by accessing the Mystery Gift, as well as Pikachu and Eevee themed costumes will be forwarded by Nintendo via email. Through a game character, it is also possible to modify the player's bicycle, but there are only two models available.

The main character in the sea and three wild Pokmon in the scenario. There are wild Pokmon in all locations.

They are legal details, especially in times when customizable items are the sensation in video games. The small variety of models, however, can make it a detail that goes unnoticed.

Also noteworthy is the soundtrack, with new and exciting melodies exclusive to Isle of Armor. Don't be surprised if you find yourself humming one or the other expansion music.

We have to get

Like a good game Pokmon, the expansion of Sword and Shield brings several monsters that were not available in the base games. With more time to work on the animations and 3D models of the pocket creatures, Game Freak has prepared the return of more than 100 old Pokmon, from all past generations, including versions of Alola (region of the games Sun, Moon, Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, all for Nintendo 3DS).

Various wild Pokmon on the beach. A new PokDex for a new Pokmon selection.

In order for the player to maintain control over which Pokmon becomes available, a new PokDex will be delivered as soon as the protagonist steps on the Isle of Armor, which has two unique creatures: the fighter-type monster Kubfu and its evolution.

Just like in Wild Area of the base games, the wild Pokmon from Isle of Armor will appear at level 60, which is also the average of the Pokmon levels of the machine-controlled trainers that are found on the island. For those who have already completed the Sword and Shield, the challenge proposed in the expansion is well below expectations, since the player will probably have considerably more powerful creatures in his team.

A Sharpedo chases the player. At the Isle of Armor, Sharpedo the new Zubat.

Two negative points deserve to be mentioned: the first is that, if the player wants a higher level of difficulty, having to put some weaker Pokmon in his team, Isle of Armor so easily. The second is in the seas: on a map that encourages exploration, sometimes annoying the amount of Sharpedo that appear and chase you for a Pokmon battle, breaking the pace of the game excessively.

A new story

The first part of the expansion Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield, Isle of Armor, has a little story of its own, as well as a new rival character, which will be different depending on the version of the game you choose to play.

Next entry Isle of Armor there is a martial arts club, where the player must go to follow the story. There, some tasks and battles will be necessary to get Kubfu, the new Pokmon in the game. After that, there are some other places to visit and strengthen your new little monster.

After completing the expansion story, another feature much requested by fans has been added: the possibility to walk with one of your team's Pokmon outside Pokball. However, for some reason this is only possible in the area of Isle of Armor, without working in the region of the base games.

On top of a mountain, the main character and his Pokmon admire the landscape. In the Isle of Armor it is possible to walk your Pokmon out of Pokball.

Even if we add the secondary mission present in the expansion to find a huge amount of Diglett all over the island, there is little history present in Isle of Armor, which only shows that the focus of Game Freak in this first stage of the pack was to introduce more Pokmon to the player and expand PokDex. A tip for the player to follow the story first, as it facilitates the search for Diglett as follows the exploration.

Persistent problems

During the wanderings through Isle of Armor, the player cannot fail to realize that some Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield remain. The most evident of these is related to online connectivity.

The player entering a cave with other players in the real world. Connecting to the internet makes the game run at a low performance.

Just like in Wild Area of base games, in Isle of Armor It is possible to connect to the internet to interact with other players around the world, either by seeing them touring the map or for exchanges and Pokmon battles. The problem is that, after connecting to the internet, the game starts to experience constant slow moments, even if the Nintendo Switch is connected via cable and a high-speed network. The problem is in the game, not on the player's internet.

Another annoying problem with the camera. The player constantly needs to stay close to walls, especially in the search for the lost Diglett, and in these moments the camera always assumes a position where it is impossible to see where the character is.

Gif that demonstrates the camera problem.The camera constantly behaves so that it is impossible to know the location of the character.

These are technical problems and, considering that Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield they were launched seven months ago, it would be reasonable to assume that they would be corrected, which so far has not happened.

A good addition to the Pokmon world

For those who liked Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield, the DLC Isle of Armor It is a good request for players to continue venturing into the world of the game and does not want to play everything again however, the new content is not essential.

Game Freak tried to please fans by correcting several things that were criticized in relation to the base games. The return of many ancient Pokmon (with even more to come in The Crown Tundra) and the variety of Isle of Armor evidence the defects of Sword and Shield. Fortunately, touring the new island is pleasant enough to entertain the player for perhaps dozens of hours, if completing the new PokDex is your goal.

Forest image from the Isle or Armor. The forest is one of the highlights of the Isle of Armor.

However, this also highlights the little content present in the first part of the expansion. By focusing on beautiful and varied areas and new Pokmon, Game Freak stopped adding substantial content to the game, and even so it did not correct performance problems while connected to the internet.

For lovers of Pokmon catches, there is excellent content in the expansion. For lovers of competitive battles, there is a new creature to be trained. However, unfortunately there is not much more to do in The Isle of Armor, except a short and not at all challenging story.

The positive balance, as the new adventure is entertaining for a long period, but the expansion package, at least for now, is more recommended for those who have a strong appreciation for Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield. The expansion can be found in Nintendo eShop, depending on the version of the base game you have:

Sunset and some Pokmon in puddles. There are several wet areas in the Isle of Armor.

Note: Before purchasing the expansion pack, the player must verify that they are buying the correct version for their game. Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield are available exclusively for Nintendo Switch and can be purchased for R $ 250.79 at Lojas Americanas.

Review made from digital copy provided by Nintendo.

  • Soundtrack – 9/10
  • History – 5/10
  • Visuals – 9.5 / 10
  • Connectivity – 4.5 / 10

7/10

Summary

The Pokmon journey has not ended, as new content for Sword and Shield is now available. The Isle of Armor solves some problems of the main games, but it does not offer so much content. Still, a must-see addition for fans of the franchise.

Pros

  • The most interesting wild area in Pokmon Sword and Pokmon Shield;
  • Many Pokmon return to the game;
  • great soundtrack.

Cons

  • Little content;
  • Technical performance and camera problems.