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What Did Video Games Teach Us in 2013? #1: Wonder Trade is Not Wonderful. At All


Pokémon X and Y were, tentatively, quite revolutionary for the series. The sixth generation brought us mega evolutions, which made the likes of Gengar even more bowel-looseningly terrifying than they already were. It brought us a spangly new 3D battle system, which had a kind of ‘tiny Pokémon Stadium in your hands’ kind of feel. But the most addictive-yet-ridiculous new addition? Wonder Trade.

Accompanying the usual GTS online trade functionality, there was… this. With Wonder Trade, you can select any ‘mon from your party or PC box, and sent it off to a random player across the world who is currently doing the same. Theoretically, this allows for all manner of exotic beasts to join your collection, and is a great boon for pokédex-aholics.

In practice, alas, it’s mostly a way to fill your boxes with utter craptastic. Bidoofs, Caterpies, Zubats, all of these. Many times over. Did I mention that Zubat is a ghastly abomination from the depths of the Devil’s bowels, who nobody —ever— likes? Because it is.

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Source of images:

As well-intentioned as this function is, it relies upon players NOT being swines. Which, where Pokémon is concerned, is quite difficult. These are those very same players, after all, who have made the GTS such a pain. I see you there, requesting a level 100 Mewtwo for your Magmar, and I wish you all the best. Not.

This isn’t to say that you won’t find some benevolent souls there, sharing perfectly-bred pokémon with great IVs, egg moves and hidden abilities. But it’s a wheat/chaff deal, with a mountain of chaff and a tiny speck of wheat. Still, this has made the practise of Wonder Trade Battling –in which you receive 6 pokémon and must use them as your team– absurdly entertaining.

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