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To be honest, I'm a bit afraid of these upcoming trials. One is changed ever so slightly and the other one has a very annoying totem to deal with. The second one is probably one of my least favorite totems, but if you asked me honestly which one I liked, I'd tell you "the easy ones so then I don't get screwed."
Anyway, as usual, I grinded up the team to be ready for the upcoming totem encounter. Nothing really eventful happened during grinding, but I will say that fighting Oricorio with a Roto Exp. Points is a good way to get experience faster. But with that aside, it's time to head onto the next town that I totally never mentioned existed in the last episode and should've because it's closer than running back to Heahea City for healing. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Royal Avenue, where there's nearly nothing of real important note aside from a store even though you can buy items at the Pokemon Center and...well, we'll get to that second point in a moment because the game's going to force us to go there. Before we do this thing, though, put something that can beat a Rock type, but isn't weak to Hau's starter in the front of your party. Trust me on this.
So if you're not hurting for money like I am, the right clerk at the Poke Mart sells TMs. Sadly, these TMs are all just weather setup moves and are pretty expensive for this point of the game. To me, they're all just a waste of a move slot unless you're running a team built around specific weather. Pick your poison, I guess. Other than that, if you've got yourself an Oricorio, you can score Pink Nectar here in order to change your Oricorio to the Psychic/Flying form able to be caught outright here on Akala Island. Don't do it. Out of Oricorio's four type options, Electric/Flying is probably the best one in terms of how many weaknesses it has. It's up to you, though. I won't and can't force you to run an Oricorio form if you don't like it's appearance or type or something. Anyway, let's get to that plot, shall we?
As you walk towards the way out of this town, you'll spot Mr. Edgelord, or as I should call him, Gladion, walking into this building. This building is where the Pokemon Battle Royales take place. We have no choice but to go there, so I can blather on about that in a second. For good measure, I'll repeat what I said previously. Put something that can beat a Rock type, but is not weak to Hau's starter in the front of the party before you walk inside. For me, it's Danger Zone. He can resist Dartrix's moves and has Brick Break. I'm honestly a bit surprised he's putting in some work despite my earlier complaints about his level up moves.
As you step inside and towards the middle of the room, some dude in a mask who doesn't wear a shirt shouts out at us, and he's (apparently) here to spread the word about the Battle Royal. He calls himself the Masked Royal, but he sure talks a lot like another guy I know who doesn't wear a shirt. Apparently, the Battle Royal is a format passed down in Alola for generations. I want to say something, but we'll get to that. So, we're going to get dragged into a battle, Hau's here for some reason and wants to take part, Gladion's going to get dragged in even though he was just standing around like a log, and then we got the Masked Royal himself.
Now, let's talk about the Battle Royal. To make a possibly overly complicated story short, it's Nintendo's way of making a free-for-all. Each trainer normally has three mons, and when one person runs out, it's over. This concept is flawed, and just doing multi battles and being free to target your "ally" is a much better way to do free-for-alls. This battle that we got dragged into is just a tutorial of the Battle Royal. Hau will always use his starter, Gladion will have Type: Null, and the Masked Royal will have a...Rockruff? Hmmm, why does that remind me of someone else who had a Rockruff and gave a pointless tutorial about how to use Z-Moves. Anyway, target Rockruff with a move Rock types are weak to and you should win in about a turn or two...
...or Hau can use Razor Leaf and kill it for me. I swear, everyone targeted Rockruff. It was actually pretty funny. But don't think the real thing is that simple. For some ungodly reason, the bots have this stupid habit of always targeting the player whenever they can, and hardly go after each other. It's pretty stupid if you ask me. With that little bit of exposition aside, some dude says we were on fire...even though Danger Zone didn't get to do anything since he's super slow. Turns out this is the next captain, Kiawe. Not much for conversation, I guess. Anyway, the "Masked Royal" knows who Hau and I are. Hmm, sounds like a guy who gave me Tiny who also knows who my character's name is. I'm gonna stop doing that, because it should be obvious by now that the Masked Royal is-
So our last stop before we leave Royal Avenue is Thrifty Megamart, a supermarket...? The short story is that there are some items you can score here at a lower price than the average Poke Mart, and whenever you go inside, you get a special discount coupon only usable in their store. Sounds like something your local grocery store would probably do. Not that I would know because as far as I know, the grocery stores I go to don't really do that. But to be real here, I go to the ones people know about, so yeah. You can't buy Super Potions here, so I'd say unless you want lower price Great Balls or status curing items, it's not worth your time. Let's go explore a volcano area, why don't we?
Welcome to Route 7. To the north is a gate that we can't go past until we're done with the trial because linear path, but we can get an encounter here even if it'll just be some Water type. You never know, it could be useful for this upcoming trial. So, let's hop on Lapras and see what we can get.
I hate my luck. I chose to fish instead of hit the water, and all I get for my efforts is a Magikarp. Absolutely useless until Lv. 20, but then it has the potential to be extremely good. Another shining example of something that would be even better if megas were able to be used in the main story. Gyarados is no slacker, though. I'd say it's pretty good, but raising up Magikarp is quite a chore, especially in a nuzlocke. It also only has Splash until Lv. 15. I lucked out and the original Magikarp SOS'd for another Magikarp, but this one was Lv. 17. Maybe I can get good natures sometime soon in this run.
Blue Shrimp the Magikarp is yet another member of the "bad nature" club. I swear I say that more than anything else in this run, but it's so true. I really am cursed. Alright, let's just put the curse aside and move on to the next area, Wela Volcano Park. We can get an encounter there, too. Let's just hope it's something...decent? At this point, I may have to start praying for good encounters.
Cubone as my first encounter. How do I feel about this one? To be honest, I'm not sure until we see what it's got under the hood. First, it's female, so I'm going to name it Mother, as a reference to Gen 1 when Cubone's mother was-
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. For the first time in the history of the Pokemon Ultra Moon Nuzlocke, we have gotten a nature that isn't trash. Impish Cubone isn't horrible. She's not really going to need her Special Attack stat and the added Defense is always nice to have. At the same time, though, I already have a full team that's raised up and ready for the trial, and she'll eventually evolve into a Fire/Ghost type. I have Tiny and Spooky, who already have those types. For now, I'll box her, but on the off chance I want to ditch Spooky or something happens to him or Tiny, I'll be considering Mother to fill in their spot, even if raising her up will be a bit of a pain.
So Wela Volcano Park shouldn't be too intimidating. To be fair, there isn't much to it in the first place. You'll reach the path to the trial site before you even explore the rest of the place since the full park experience is optional. There are a few goodies and a TM to snag if you really want to grab them. To be honest, I'm gonna do it before we do this trial. I-it's not because I'm scared or anything. I just...want to be prepared. Nothing else! Just being prepared!
Anyway, please excuse my second tsundere moment of this run. On my way to collect the stuff, Spooky almost died from a Rock Blast from a Roggenrola when I switched Master Derp out. Let's just say I got lucky it only got four hits (and of course the first one was a crit). Spooky lives to haunt more Pokemon. Anyway, my options for this trial are fairly limited due to what the totem is. I'm going to use Master Derp since, once you start this trial, you can't switch which Pokemon you put in the front until it's over. Save your game, prepare yourself, and head through the gate to the peak of the volcano. So, as always, it's time for...
Trial #3: The Trial of Kiawe! Dance Dance Memorization!
So, this trial is a test of observation. A lot of games have parts like this, when you'll be shown one thing, then shown it again. The second time, the game will want you to find the difference. In this case, if you're right, you'll be facing an Alolan Marowak. From this point, afterward, the answers are so obvious that you should not fail this. The second dance, for some random reason, will add a hiker to the mix that you'll have to battle because you'll only get this wrong unless you're being a meme. Anyway, one Magmar encounter later and we're onto the big one. Prepare yourself for the final dance.
This answer is much more obvious in the original games, but here it is, Totem Alolan Marowak. It gets +2 Speed, so there is a very likely chance it will outspeed your entire team at this point of the game. Be careful with this one as it has a Thick Club, which doubles it's Attack. Yes, doubles it's already threatening Attack stat. If you have a Water type...you should be safe. In theory. It has Hex and can call in a Salazzle, the evolution of a Pokemon you can encounter in Wela Volcano Park.
So...my plan was to put the Marowak to sleep, then use Danger Zone to pick him off. Turns out that's a bad idea because the Salazzle can poison him even if he's a Steel type thanks to it's Corrosion ability. It also has annoyingly high Special Attack with Flame Burst. Let's just say that Danger Zone didn't last a second. Spooky, sadly, met a sad fate too. Salazzle outsped him and hit him with a Flame Burst as I went for Curse to ware down the totem. He ended up biting the dust too. Plan C was to use Class Act, who outspeeds Salazzle, to do damage to the totem. He couldn't kill the Marowak, then it turns out the stupid thing had Brick Break, because of course it did! Welp, there goes half my team in an instant. At least Spooky's Curse took down the totem.
Tiny had to come in, and with a Roto Boost, was able to finish the Salazzle and end this nightmare. While we get a Firium Z, it's still a bitter victory when half of my team's lives were taken to secure us this victory. Danger Zone, Spooky, and Class Act. You were all valuable members of our squad, and you all knew what we were getting into. For our efforts, we get some Quick Balls and the ability to use Charizard Glide, which is this game's version of Fly. Still doesn't change how half of my team is dead.
Danger Zone, despite my earlier complaints, you did all you could to prove me wrong, that a regular Mawile with lackluster moves could still be a force of nature. If only you had Intimidate, though, as Class Act may have had the chance to survive that Brick Break...but he got poisoned too, so I doubt it, to be honest.
Spooky...I honestly had no faith you would live long. You get almost no good moves for at least half the game, and you couldn't outspeed a Salazzle. But, without you sacrificing yourself to Curse the totem, it may have been the end of the locke. Even in your final moments, you tried to make yourself useful.
And Class Act, yet another team member I didn't have much faith would last long. You were our team's speedy, yet classy, cat. You put the final nail in the totem's coffin, but sadly, it chose to take you to the grave with it. Rest knowing you did put in a little bit of work.
Welp, now we're in a spot. I need to fill three spots, then level them up to around Lv. 24. Let's think about what we got and who we can put in the team. First is Tiny. We already have a major Rock type problem, and that's bad. The only things I have that won't get totally ruined by Rock is Magneto, Styles, Hex, Amphy, and Watchdog. Amphy and Magneto share the same Ground weakness too, which is also bad. At this point, Watchdog is looking like my best choice unless I really want to train Hex up to make him into an Espeon.
Spark Plug still has a long wait before his evolution, and he really lacks in Speed. Sadly, so does everything in my PC right now except maybe Buzz Buzz, but it goes back to the Rock weakness problem that is actually very bad at this specific point of the game. Fire is no issue thanks to having Master Derp. Speaking of him...
Ghost, Dark, Bug, Electric, and Grass. I have next to no solutions for those problems at the moment, which is pretty bad. Our next trial is Mallow's Grass trial, and the totem there sucks too. At this point, there are options. We could go back to Melemele and get the encounter leftover from Kala'e Bay. There are two static encounters on Melemele, but we can't access them until after Akala's Grand Trial. This is bad because I need team members to balance out the team right now, not later. I'll stop ranting and ponder on who I'll use in my own time. For those who are still pushing through, even if it's a lot of me complaining about bad natures and 69 ways to not get screwed, I really appreciate it. I may not say it out loud, but know that I do appreciate it. So, I'll plan out what we're going to use and next time we're going to hit up the next route for, hopefully, something that can help balance out this mess of a team.
The torment has yet to begin, but hold your horses, it's coming...very, very soon.
So I think they lowered the encounter rate for Oricorio in Melemele Meadow, because grinding the team up a bit was honestly more of a pain than usual. I still managed to get everyone up to Lv. 19, but it honestly took a lot longer than I had hoped. So, without further delay, we're forced to go to the Alola Photo Club and get a picture taken before we head off to our next destination on our island challenge. I still think this whole "forced photo club visit" is a total waste of time. Let's just get it over with.
So out of all my team members worthy of being in a picture, I had to pick the one who carried us through the Grand Trial. The man, the myth, the legend...
Master Derp. And this is honestly the first time I've gotten a chance to show off my character...who still looks pretty standard for this point of the game because Melemele's apparel shop is lacking in good options. Whatever, because where we're going, the best clothing item in the game will be able to be bought. Speaking of which, we should go and see if Kukui and Lillie got the boat ready to go. I may or may not do more random pictures with the trial MVP, but let's shelf that plan until we get closer to the next trial.
Or Hau can be lurking outside when we walk out. Along with that, his Rowlet evolved. Guess it must've happened after beating Hala...is what I would say, but he didn't actually win...I think. It's not important. At the very least, Kukui got the boat ready, but Hau wants to go Mantine Surfing to the next island. Once he's gone, Lillie goes on about how Nebby's home is far away and she wants to help it, but she's not a trainer, so she's going to mooch off our skills instead. Welp, now that we got that settled, it's time to go to Big Wave Beach because once again, we're being forced to go there.
So before we can go to Big Wave Beach so I can talk about it for real, we get interrupted by...a black guy who looks a bit like Professor Oak in a Hawaiian shirt. He's Samson Oak, because of course, we gotta keep the tree theme going with these professors. For some ungodly reason, he's looking into the Totem Pokemon. He's the guy who will exchange your Totem Stickers for a Totem sized version of a Pokemon. The difference is mainly just cosmetic, so their stats are the same as their normal sized varient and don't get unfair stat buffs turn 1.
Anyway, Big Wave Beach is one of four locations where you can do Mantine Surfing, yet another mechanic exclusive to Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon. The short version is that, while riding a Mantine, you perform tricks to get points while you make your way to another island. This first, required run will take you to Akala Island, our next stop, but in order to have access to the other two spots, you need to visit that island first when the story puts you in that direction. So you might be wondering "what are the points all about, then? Just for fun?" Well, yes and no. You get BP, or Beach Points, at the end of a run. Sadly, I'm partly sure you can only get a maximum of 10 BP per run depending on your points. You can use this BP for postgame items that people use in competitive battles, but that's not for a long, long time. The main purpose would likely to teach moves to your Pokemon or get some items from the people behind the desks. Only one island doesn't have one of these desk areas, though, and I'll point it out when and if we eventually get there.
Along with the rest of my tiny ramble, if you can get the high score on all four Mantine Surfing spots, you can score yourself a special Pokemon as a reward. Let that sink in when you consider whether or not you want to spend some time on Mantine Surfing. It's fun, but it's very samey to me. I'll probably only be doing it the once and not care much about it afterwards since I got the reward on my Ultra Sun already. Without further delay, let's Mantine Surf.
With about 25,000 points, here we are. Welcome to Akala Island, or as I like to call it, hell. Why do I call it hell? Well, we'll get to that. I ended up getting the high score first try, but let's be real, it's not hard to smash that first high score. Now that we got that covered, let's slide into Heahea City, home of the Name Rater and the second best apparel shop in the game in my opinion. Why is it the second best? Well, we got story to cover first, then I'll talk about it. On an unrelated note, my game lagged a bit when Hau came running up the road. I doubt it's a problem with the digital version, but it was a bit weird to see that.
Turns out we beat Kukui because his boat is garbage. Anyway, it turns out someone agrees with me when I say Kukui should put on a shirt already. Whoops, forgot I wasn't going to talk about that anymore. Anyway, we got new faces. Olivia, who is totally not the Big Kahuna of Hanahuna, but the kahuna of Akala Island. With her is the bringer of my doo-I mean, Mallow, one of three captains. Yes, there are three trials on Akala Island, and all of them suck. That's why I said this island is hell earlier. Let Mallow's little speech about "ingredients" be a bit of foreshadowing for her trial. It's probably one of my least favorite in the game. Hau's naturally going to curb his malasada obsession while Lillie goes shopping. Looks like she and I are on the same wavelength.
I'm beginning to think Lillie has some kind of window shopping habit. I mean, sure, I do too, so I can't call it weird, but still. Does she have other things to do except keep Nebby in the bag? We're not going to be a Lillie, though. We're gonna buy something after we listen to her talk about her problems some more. Apparently, she's suppose to be meeting someone important to her at the Tide Song Hotel. More foreshadowing, maybe? Probably, but now, allow me to explode for a second here. Please excuse me.
In Moon and Ultra Moon, this apparel shop sells the striped Over-the-Knee Socks. In my personal opinion, this right here, is one of, if not, the best clothing item in the Gen 7 games ever. The Flower-Print skirt is also available here too, but another apparel shop towards the end of our Akala Island visit has better skirts there. I mean, I'm not saying I'm not going to get one, but the ones in the other apparel shop are far better. And, if you really want it, the stupid chicken hat (it's called the Casual Cap) is sold here too. It's still garbage and I prefer the Vacation Hat. Moving on.
So our next destination is Route 4, where another prime and ready encounter awaits us. Although, because it's a system that we must be interrupted every twelve seconds by someone or something in this game, a couple of weirdos standing in front of a fountain attack. I know I call everyone in this game weird, but these are the people I was talking about in my Zygarde rant in Episode 2. For people who have played X and Y, you can probably tell who they are from a glance. Dexio and Sina, who I didn't care for much in Gen 6 and I don't care much for them here either. We're gonna have to battle, though. If memory serves, who you face depends on the game because if I recall, I faced Dexio during my Ultra Sun casual run. Anyway, my whole team is Lv. 19. We already know how this is likely going to go. Just so I'm being at least slightly detailed, Sina has Ice types. Smoochum got Bug Bit to death and Tiny blew up Glaceon. Easy battle.
Unrelated, but she has a female Glaceon. I'm jealous because Eevee's gender ratio is leaned more towards males just like with the starters. She also had a Mega Ring, so I guess they're just handing out Key Stones like candy over in Kalos now. Kinda wish I could get one now with a Mawilite to sweep the game with Danger Zone, but it's never that simple. We get a free heal and Full Restore out of the deal, though. You'd get the Zygarde Cube in the original games, so I think this was a better deal than that abomination.
Route 4 isn't totally huge, there's a few trainers littered about, and a fun chance for me to score a (hopefully) good encounter. Considering last episode's awful track record with bad encounters, I'm hoping my luck turned around. Without further delay, for Route 4, the encounter is...
Pikipek, also known as this generation generic early bird Pokemon. For some weird reason, this thing's evolution can learn Rock Blast. I guess since it gets Skill Link, that's something. Otherwise, it's Speed is generally terrible. I named her Toucan Sarah because it's female and it's final evolution reminds me of Toucan Sam. I swear if you don't know who Toucan Sam is, you either had no childhood or need to go get some Fruit Loops.
Sadly, no Skill Link for me. Keen Eye with a nature to increase Defense. Overall, it appears my curse of bad encounters isn't gone at all yet. I think it's just getting worse. Welp, to the box with this one. Let's race up Route 4 to Panolia Town. So while blazing through Route 4, Spark Plug evolved at last into Charjabug. Now we pray for his survival. In the meantime, while wandering through, there's a place full of Pikachu. A bit weird, but whatever. You can score a Pikachu Shirt and cap if you talk to a woman and take an easy quiz. The answers are easy if you know Pikachu...or use Serebii. Whatever comes first. Onward to the town, though!
You know, this town reminds me of a place you'd see in one of those western showdowns. I think Nintendo was thinking the same thing, because a few steps in and we have another encounter with everyone's favorite malasada fiend, Hau. If he's coming to us, it can only mean one thing. Yup, time for a battle. Then again, his lead is his totally obvious starter, so Tiny can destroy that with no trouble. Just be a little careful because now he has a Z-Power Ring too. So, Dartrix. Still Grass/Flying. It shouldn't be that intimidating if you have a Fire type like me. He still has Pikachu, which is still the same old game, also known as blow it up with a Ground move if you have one. Our new and improved Spark Plug put it in it's place.
Now, even though he has a dragon, I have Danger Zone, and Danger Zone can slay dragons while this thing slowly attempts to try hurting Danger Zone...and failing hardcore. Last but not least, he has an Eevee now, which I'm pretty sure will always end up becoming an evolution that can beat your starter. For now, it's just an Eevee, so bring those Fighting moves and put it in it's place. For me, Tiny kicked it in the face a couple of times and it died. Hau is still no threat at this point of the game. For our efforts, all we get is a Dire Hit. It could come in handy because it ignores the Totem's stat boosts if they get Defense or Special Defense boosts. Once he gives the Jaden Yuki speech, we're on our way again, and our destination is Panolia Ranch, where we can score another encounter.
On our way up the ranch, we, as usual, get interrupted, by some dude. One of the captains is here, and it turns out it's Mallow, associating with demon cows we call Miltank. When you have enough bad experiences with Whitney's Miltank, you learn to hate those things. Anyway, she gives us a new Pokemon to use for our Ride Pager, a Stoutland. It's basically an Itemfinder. Anyway, she tells us her friend Lana is on Route 5 and then runs off. Let's just get our encounter and be on our way, shall we?
I got a Mareep! I like the Mareep line. The only real problem with this line is their speed. Most Electric types (except all the ones I've caught so far) are generally pretty fast. Mareep's line, not so much. This is another shining example of a Pokemon that has a Mega Evolution when fully evolved, but because you can't use megas in the main story, it's like a middle finger to me. Other than that, what sucks about this line is that they don't learn Thunderbolt by level up. I'm still naming it Amphy because I always name my Ampharos after the one in the lighthouse in Gold and Silver.
Sometimes I feel like throwing my 2DS out a window because of all the bad or absolutely trash natures I get. Do natures that raise Speed in exchange for a useful stat have to follow me to the ends of Alola?! Well, on the bright side, there is another static encounter we can get. However, it's an egg, so it'll be Lv. 1. It's better than nothing, and it's at the Pokemon Nursery up ahead. So, I'll be back after the egg hatches.
My god, that took an eternity. For our efforts and mindlessly running around in a circle on Tauros for about five minutes, we get an Eevee. This thing gets a bunch of different evolutions, so I have no idea what I'll eventually evolve it into. For now, I'm name him Hex...because options? I don't know. I really can't think of anything at the moment because of the choices. For now, he's going in the PC since he's Lv. 1. Let's just make our way up to Route 5.
So before we hit up the grass for an encounter, there's a bit of story to take care of first. There's a required double battle beforehand, but if you have a Fire type, it shouldn't be hard. Now, before we go into this, I may sound weird by saying this, but lead with someone who has a Fighting, Bug, or Fairy type move. Just take my word for it. I personally have choices, so I'm going with Danger Zone.
So, going into this, Hau just got finished getting beaten by some edgy looking kid. Somehow, he knows who we are. That's a bit suspicious. Maybe I've already gained an infamous reputation for blowing trainers up. Anyway, Mr. Edgelord is Gladion. Of course, he's working for Team Skull, so we're going to get dragged into a forced encounter with this guy. Now, he will lead with a Zubat...is what probably what you're thinking, right? Well, yes and no. This is not a Zubat. He has a Zubat, but his lead is a trick. Allow me to explain. Back at the Trainer's School, you have a chance at encountering a Zorua, a fox Pokemon with an ability called Illusion. It'll come in disguised as whatever Pokemon is in your last slot. It's evolution used to have some handy viability with that ability until team preview screwed it over since you know it'll be there, disguised as something. This is a similar case, which is why I said moments ago to lead with something that can fight off a Dark type. The game will tell you it's not very effective, but roll with it anyway and you should see what I mean.
Once the Zorua is gone, he'll probably just throw out the real Zubat. It's a Zubat, so killing it shouldn't be hard. You have plenty of options at this point for a weak Poison/Flying type like Zubat. I used Master Derp because he needed a level, anyway. Last but not least is the Pokemon he brings up before the battle, Type: Null. It's a pure Normal type, but it can actually hit pretty hard. I luckily have Danger Zone with Brick Break, so it shouldn't be that hard. It would be a lot nicer if I had Intimidate instead of Hyper Cutter, but whatever. He has Battle Armor, so you can't get critical hits on him, so don't waste your Dire Hit.
With a few Brick Breaks, we win. Gladion also points out that maybe Hau didn't actually beat Hala...when he's serious. Suddenly, Team Skull grunts who want to get blown up too. Lucky for me, because Gladion knows I'll destroy them too, he gets them to back off. Hau's going to hand over even more useless Revives after the Team Skull squad leaves and now we can hit up the Pokemon Center, heal up, and score an encounter for Route 5.
On my way to the Pokemon Center, turns out having the Soothe Bell on Class Act jumped his happiness up quite a lot and he...already evolved into Persian. That could be good for the upcoming trial, and unlike certain Pokemon that evolve through stones (looking at you, Raichu and Vulpix), it still learns moves by level up. It also gets Swift right away, so I can finally put it's good Special Attack to use. Now, let's go get an encounter for real.
Lillipup. I ran into a Pikipek and a Buttefree, both of which were dupes (since I already have Caterpie). I mean, it's yet another Fighting weakness, which could long term be a problem. I mean, it's more power in the PC, I guess. Although, since one Fake Out from Class Act took out about half it's HP, I'm already worried about the nature. I'm gonna name him Watchdog. Once again, I'm slowly convinced I'm cursed to only get bad natures. Bold nature, which is bad for a physical attacker. Pickup is probably the only thing that's useful on him. Oh well. He's going to the PC and we're going to Brooklet Hill for our second trial.
Pretty nice looking place. Sadly, right across the bridge is the trial gate and some girl. Turns out she's Lana, and she's the captain here in Brooklet Hill. So, without further delay, it's time for...
Trial #2: The Trial of Brooklet Hill! Splish Splash, what's in the water?
Yes, I am making up these titles as we go along. Anyway, the point of this trial is to herd the Pokemon found in the pools of Brooklet Hill downstream to lure out the Totem Pokemon. How is it going to lure it out, I don't know. To perform this task, Lana adds Lapras to our Ride Pager, so now we can surf around water, and by association, go back to Melemele Island and get our remaining encounter. We'll save that for later. Recall that until this trial is done, I can't get an encounter, so let's worry about the trial for now.
This is another prime example of "Spark Plug carries the team because Electric move." Spark Plug isn't my answer to every problem in this trial, but we'll get to that when we get to that. Anyway, after an introduction, let's get to work. We need to use Lapras to go to the super obvious splashes and blow up some stuff. There are two things you will run into during this trial. First is Wishiwashi while the other is Dewpider, something that wasn't actually in the original version of this trial. If you have a Flying or Electric move, they shouldn't be too hard. Wishiwashi is also totally easy to destroy. It's a weak Water type...at least at the levels you face them at this point of the game.
So anyway, just keep on going and picking off these Wishiwashi, but after the second encounter, it'll start raining. That's a bit weird. Let's make our way to the end. Let me just say, though, that the totem in this game has actually changed. It's, in my opinion, more dangerous than the old one. Get your team healed and ready before you enter the Totem's Den. Lana will catch up and tell us we've gotten the Totem Pokemon lured out. Time to go for the kill. When you approach the splashing, though, the rain will pick up and shortly afterward...it will appear.
Behold, Totem Araquanid. It gets a Speed boost at the start. If you're thinking of using an Electric move to end this fight quickly, I'd think again. The game designers were smart and gave this thing a Wacan Berry, which weakens one Electric type move used on the Pokemon, likely to cover for it's weakness. The permanent rain makes this thing's Water type moves hit like a truck and it's Water Bubble ability lowers the power of Fire moves and boosts the power of it's Water type moves even further. Your avenue for attack options is pretty low for this point since amazing Rock type moves like Rock Slide and Stone Edge aren't around yet. Flying type moves may be your best bet here. Use a Roto Boost if you feel like you need it turn 1.
I went with the turn 1 Roto Boost, but Araquanid's Bubble still hurts a lot. If you have a Charjabug like me, you could always risk a turn 2 Bug Bite to eat Araquanid's berry, but be wary of a potential critical hit. Spark Plug took a beating from the combined might of an Araquanid and it's ally Dewpider, but a Bug Bite and two Sparks was enough from a Lv. 21. Charjabug with no positive Attack nature to bring down the totem. As for it's buddy, Acrobatics is always an option. And with that, our second trial comes to a close with no deaths. Spark Plug proving himself as leader of our squad once again.
The rain will stop and we'll be one Waterium Z richer. After another pose, we also get ourselves a fishing rod, thus increasing our encounter choices (and snagging a few Totem Stickers). Lana will slide over some Dive Balls and now we are free to get an encounter on Brooklet Hill. I chose to head right back to Route 5's Pokemon Center, but Lana will inform us that our next trial is with a guy named Kiwae at Wela Volcano Park. She'll also tell us that the path in that direction is blocked by Sudowoodo, so now that we have the Waterium Z, we should slide over there. First, let's get our encounter in Brooklet Hill before we go that way.
It's a rainy day in both Brooklet Hill and my heart because all I got was a Wingull as an encounter. I don't want to talk about this one. I know I'm gonna name it Mailbird as a Pokemon Mystery Dungeon reference since Pelipper tends to be the mailmen in those games. But of course, when the Pokemon is mainly a disappointment, it has a somewhat decent nature. It has Hydration, though, which I'm pretty sure becomes Drizzle upon evolution. I guess Mailbird could have his uses, after all. Although, for the time being, I'm going to preserve her until her time in the sun is here...to blot out the sun with rain. Anyway, before we end things off, let's go clear the path and gain access to another fairly decent grinding spot. Back to Panolia Ranch with us.
After scaring away the Sudowoodo, we interrupt this commentary with more Ultra Recon Squad weirdness. They need to gather data to win battles when they could've just went to the...wait a moment, actually. How did they even get on Akala Island? Whatever. We're going to have to battle against their Furfrou again and blow it up with-
I'm sorry, what? That's not a Furfrou. That's a Poipole. Looks like the Ultra Recon Squad is stepping up their game...even though this Poipole will never evolve. It's on par with most of my team, though, so it's a little dangerous. It can also eat the hits and it doesn't help that Soleria uses an X. Sp Def on it to cover for it's Psychic weakness by raising it's Special Defense. It was also taking hits from Danger Zone well. I still brought it down eventually, though. Danger Zone and Spark Plug are already nearly on par with the next totem. Still proving that Tiny is pretty useless.
After more cryptic talk, off they go. Route 6 is open to us now, though. A few more trainers and an encounter await us. Once again, before we get our encounter, we've got yet another Team Skull related disaster to handle. Do these guys do anything with their time except cause trouble for others? Oh look, it's those nameless, totally forgettable guys from Melemele. I'm surprised it's been over a few hours since we saw these guys. According to these nameless guys, stealing is a legitimate business. Yeah, sure, and I'm the champion of Alola. We already know what happens after this. We win, same as always.
After they run off like cowards, the Drifloon is going to fly off, likely to go steal kids since it's going towards the next town. Anyway, introducing ourselves to this Hapu girl and her Mudsdale and something about a Battle Royale. Once she rides off, we're free to get an encounter. Let's do it!
I got an Oricorio. Lucky me, because in the main story, in a nuzlocke, you only get three chances in the entire run to catch an Oricorio. Why three, you ask? Oricorio is only able to be caught in very specific locations (and Route 6). One of them is unable to be reached during the main story, so that's why I only say three. This thing gets multiple forms, so I'm not sure what I'm going to do with him. For now, I'll name him Dance Fever because it's a dancer with multiple forms. Relaxed nature is...eh at best. He's yet another example of something I don't want in the party right now because of weaknesses, so he's going to the box.
So, with that, we're going to end it off there. Next time, we'll slide into the new town and prepare ourselves for our next trial. Offscreen, naturally, I'm going to grind up and get ready for it. There hasn't been much of my torment yet, but I'm hoping that at least one person is enjoying this. So, yeah, next time, trials and maybe a meeting with the best character in the game? We'll see.
And because Spark Plug was the real MVP of today's episode, here we go. Gotta love how I bashed the Alola Photo Club and here I am using it.