Pokemon Grow Part 2: Travel Across the Land

Searching Far and Wide

Back for more?  Okay then! Knowing how to capture Pokemon is all well and good, but it helps if you know how to find them first!  There’s a function built into your gear called “Tall Grass Mode” – I have no idea why it’s called that, but someone said it once and it stuck.  Turning that on will let you track your location and find more Pokemon!  (GPS can be turned on and off in-game to save battery power)

When you first start out, every Pokemon will be a fresh discovery and you can expect to see a lot of new faces in a short time.  Most trainers begin in cities and suburbs, and the Pokemon native to those areas are generally used to human presence.  Even in the more remote areas, the most common Pokemon encountered tend to be docile and friendly, appearing often and wandering away only if you ignore them for long enough.

Other Pokemon are less used to human interaction, or less trusting.  You’re more likely to encounter these Pokemon in remote locations, but they can still be seen occassionally in areas inhabited by humans.  When you do see them, it’s likely that they won’t hang around for long unless you’ve got their favourite flavour of berries.  Even if they run, don’t panic!  These Pokemon generally don’t flee far, and your Pokedex can help you track them to their approximate location.  Even if you can’t follow them, wild Pokemon still meander around on their own, and you can set your Pokedex to keep track of a given Pokemon until you encounter it again, or want to track something else.

Finally, there are Pokemon that have lived a long and harsh life in the wilderness.  These Pokemon are extremely rare in human occupied spaces and pose a danger to any trainers exploring remote and untamed lands.  Strong Pokemon generally do not feel threatened by novice trainers, but respond to the presence of a strong trainer in their territory as a challenge and can attack without warning!  Strong wild Pokemon vary greatly in their patterns of behaviour, and any trainer able to capture them is contributing valuable information to our research efforts, while also earning themselves and their pokemon an impressive wealth of experience!

Of course, there’s a bit more to it than that.  Where you are in relation to things like forests and fresh or salt water, the time of day and the weather also play a role in the Pokemon you’re likely to encounter.  Part of our research is in understanding where, when and under what circumstances you are most likely to encounter Pokemon in the wild, and while we’ve already amassed a substantial data set so far, we can always use more.

There’s also a few Pokemon that we haven’t been able to get much data on, due to their incredible rarity (rares are actually rare).  These Pokemon almost never appear in the wild, and require enormous patience and luck for the chance to even see one.  Rumour has it that some cannot be found in the wild at all, either due to how the Pokemon handle their young or because the whole species has gone extinct (hatchling Pokemon and fossils)!  Our best explorers and trainers maintain an information network alerting trainers whenever there’s a sighting of these Pokemon, so keep an eye on your Pokedex – you never know when one might be nearby!

 Nature’s Bounty

We’ve already touched on the subject of berries, but let’s dig into the details.  Groves of berry trees are dotted all over the world and come in a massive variety of flavours.  As a future Pokemon master, you’re going to need to learn not only which berries appeal to which Pokemon, but where to find them and how best to prepare them.

Berry groves aren’t especially common (and never immediately outside someone’s house) and the fruit takes some time to grow, so it’s always a better idea to shake many trees over a period of time rather than sitting under the one (longer cooldown, more items per shake, berry volume, rarity and possibly type dependent on leading Pokemon).  When you do find one, keep an eye on the berries you get, as they’ll indicate what you’re likely to receive the next time you give them a shake (grove harvests are based on static loot tables based on grove type).  You might think that a grove doesn’t have any of the berries that you’re keen on, but there’s always a chance that a super rare tree in the grove is ready to harvest just as you’re visiting!

Even a single grove is enough to get the novice trainer started, with plenty of berries to feed your first companion and experiment with poffin preparation.  Poffins were once used to tailor a Pokemon’s condition, and this is still fundamentally true, however we’ve made some ground-breaking discoveries since then.  The biggest change is that by altering the recipe, poffins have now become a Pokemon’s staple diet and the source of immense power independent of training!  By feeding a given Pokemon it’s preferred flavour of berry or Poffin regularly, your Pokemon will become much stronger than a Pokemon of the same level found in the wild.  This is a new field of study, so every meal is a new discovery!

Don’t forget that you can cook with your friends!  The functionality of your portable Poffin baker is limited, but by combining the processing capacity of other trainer’s units, you can increase the efficiency and combinations of flavours of your poffins (players can use multiple berries solo but get less poffins)!  We’re still only learning, but our current data suggests that unlike previous iterations of poffins, it’s much more efficient to feed Pokemon the combination of flavours they’re most partial to, rather than focusing on just one.

There’s more you can make with berries than just poffins!  Berries with medicinal properties can be added to potions to create powerful remedies, mixed with unpleasant healing items to make them palatable or even distilled into aromatics to attract Pokemon partial to that particular flavour.  Every day, we’re discovery new uses and breaking new ground!

Oh, I almost forgot!  This is also for you.  It’s a prototype micro-terrarium!  Our best scientists engineered a portable device that allows you to grow your own berries on the move!  Of course, this means you will need to care for your berry sprout until it’s ready to be harvested (time and care conditions vary much like in traditional titles) and you’ll only get a couple at a time, but you’ll know exactly what you’re getting.  The best part is, you’ll have a steady supply of that berry until it wilts (popup:  variable number of harvests per berry) or you want to switch it for another one!  These things are in very limited supply, but if you’re willing to pay for the parts and labour, our team is always happy to build more!

Supplies on the Go

Now that the PokeMart has gone global, it’s no longer necessary to trek all the way to and from the store fronts to buy what you need and sell what you don’t.  We’ve talked about selling berries to earn an income, but what about the stuff you’ll be buying?

Honestly, not much has changed.  Pokeballs of varying qualities and potions will always be on the shopping list, and due to the fact that even the remotest corners of the world now have access to an entire department store’s range of goods, you can also pick up specialty items like evolutionary stones and TMs while on the move!  Having said that, the global market has a huge demand for these things, so stock is limited and you’ll need to be vigilant to get what you want (evolutionary items and TMs vary weekly).  Access to a wider pool of supplies also means being able to buy in bulk.  The PokeMart is always happy to give their loyal customers a fair discount when purchasing a large amount of supplies at once.

In addition to your repellents and supplements, there’s also a wide and changing variety of toys and accessories available for your Pokemon, but we’ll talk about that later.

A Present?  For me?

Ever wondered what happens to the Pokeballs you throw that miss?  Well for the most part, they’re stolen by passing Linoone, but sometimes you might be able to pick them up yourself.  In fact, you’ll probably find a whole variety of items lying around if you look hard enough.  I’m not actually talking about littering – a group of trainers got together to set up a treasure hunt and it kind of carried on and never stopped.

The GPS unit on your Pokedex does more than just track your physical location.  There’s a locator function that detects nearby caches left by other trainers (including NPCs) that can contain all sorts of neat stuff!  It’s really that simple;  just pick a few items you think someone else would like, find a spot to store them and feel good in the knowledge that you’ve helped another trainer on their quest to be a master.  Of course, we’ve got rules to ensure fair play (limit 1 per trainer per location, 7 per trainer per day) and the best trainers are those willing to give up something valuable to help out a complete stranger (exp bonus for having your cache picked provides incentive to leave something nice.  Caches listed from oldest to newest and expire after a week).

I’ve heard rumours that there are even trainers out there willing to give away super rare berries and items – I haven’t been able to confirm it myself, but the only way to know for sure is to get out there and look!

That wraps up our second little pep talk!  With this information, you’re ready to get out there into the world and have yourself an adventure.  I’ve got to check on some Pokemon that I’m caring for, but if you’re happy to hang around for a bit, I’ll introduce you to them!

Part 0:  The Game That Could Have Been

Part 1:  New Game Start

Part 3:  Pokemon Care and Training

Part 4:  Special Events

Part 5:  PvE, PvP and Co-op

Part 6:  The Endgame

Part MissingNo.:  The Long-Ass, Non-RP Version

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