I can’t put a frown emoji in an article header but trust me, I wanted to. See, Nintendo kind of stealth released a bunch of new Pokemon news for its up-and-coming games Pokemon Legends Arceus and the two-pack of Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl.
And while the Pokemon Legends Arceus stuff looked amazing, the Diamond and Pearl footage hurt me to my core. See, I don’t hate Diamond and Pearl. While I’m not a fan of Dialga, Palkia and Giratina (as they all look like bosses from Starfox), there was a lot to love about the games. It took great care of its lore. Team Galatic was actually intimidating. And, of course, it introduced us to the best gym leader in all of Pokemon history: Gardenia. Fight me.
But there’s a thing that haunted the old Pokemon games. Something best summed up by my seven-year-old when I let him play the originals when he encountered them and states simply, “Why would that do this to people?” He then added, “That isn’t fun.”
If you’re familiar with the old games you probably know what I’m referring to. I’m talking about Hidden Moves. One of the best moves the Pokemon series ever pulled was to yeet these things into the stratosphere.
Sadly, it looks like Hidden Moves did not burn up on reentry like I would have hoped because they are back. The trailer goes out of its way to practically celebrate it.
If you didn’t play the original Pokemon games, Hidden Moves were like Technical Machines except you could use them as often as you liked and they wouldn’t disappear. The whole purpose of Hidden Moves was to teach your Pokemon skills that allowed you to traverse the landscape. It was essentially a thing to prevent you from getting too far in the game and made things a bit more linear.
Later games allowed you to call a flying taxi and ride a bike but back in the day you needed a mule and that mule was more than often a Bidoof. A term commonly heard with HMs is an “HM mule” which that was unfortunately called an “HM slave.” If you can’t see why that term was wrong there’s nothing I can teach you that 12 years of school couldn’t get in your head.
The HM mule, commonly a Bidoof in Diamond/Pearl used up all four of it’s move slots to get you through the game. The Bidoof could learn CUT to cut through large growth, SURF so you could traverse the waterways, WATERFALL so you could go up waterfalls, and ROCK SMASH so you could get through busted up rock walls. That left four other HMs; FLY, DEFOG, ROCK CLIMB and STRENGTH to split up betwixt your remaining five Pokemon. With the exception of two or three of them, most of these we not great in battle meaning you had a multitude of moves that you would only have on hand in case you ran into a bush or a lake.
The game still looks fun but boy howdy did I not miss HMs. What do you think? Are you also upset to see HMs return? Are you happy to see them return? If you’re happy about this who hurt you? Let’s talk.