Rocket Run: A Pokemon Platinum Challenge Run, Part 1

(I’m cross-posting this with a thread on Sprite Stitch as well. If you’ve been hankering after some craft or gaming updates, worry not! I’ve been plugging away on Where There Are Bees and am reaching the home stretch. As for Season 8 of the restarted Folly campaign, we’re on the brink of our twentieth session. The party will probably encounter Megatron soon. Yes, that Megatron. 😛 In the meantime, please enjoy irregular entries in this new challenge series.)

After finishing a couple of games I was working through recently, I had a hankering to do a challenge run on Pokemon Platinum. I decided that I’d comic-log this run and share it here. 🙂

Edited RocketRun p01

I chose to breed a team to carry me through rather than catch as I go. That means a maximum of five critters plus Eevee, Togepi, Riolu, and Porygon (the four gift critters in Platinum). I looked long and hard at the available critters of the appropriate types, checking for both general coverage and for the final endgame versus the Elite Four and Cynthia. I narrowed it all down, bit by bit, until I had my concept team. Time to break out SoulSilver – my “repository” game with all my permanently-stored pokerthingz – and get to biking.

I ran the breeding chains only as long as necessary (i.e. I was breeding for moves only, not taking extra pains to get good IVs, though I do have some very decent parent stock and Dittos, so there’s a better than average chance of good IVs anyway) and didn’t check the eggs for nature before trading them over to Platinum. I only fought one battle with my Turtwig starter to completion (the battle with Barry in the beginning); the remaining battles that my starter faced were solely to capture critters to trade for my eggs (and a Magcargo for easy hatching 😛 ).

Here’s what came out:

Bone, Sneasel
Inner Focus, Bold, Likes to run
– Ice Shard
– Leer
– Icy Wind
– Scratch

Intended to be an Adamant priority lead who would get Swords Dance later for maximum Night Slash carnage, Bone is hampered by a Bold nature. Bold? Seriously? Already this glass cannon has become the weak link of the party. But this is in-game, where natures don’t matter so much because the AI is… bleh.

Sabot, Scyther
Swarm, Adamant, Somewhat stubborn
– Pursuit
– Vacuum Wave
-False Swipe
– Leer

Sabot got the nature right, but unfortunately his ability was Swarm instead of Technician. I had been hoping for the latter in order to boost Bullet Punch, Bug Bite, and Aerial Ace to 90 BP. Without the Technician boost, this would force him to take X-Scissor in the late game to get any major STAB damage at all. Still, Scizor’s typing makes Sabot an excellent defensive switch-in with an offensive punch no matter the ability.

Giygas, Gastly
Levitate, Naive, Often dozes off
– Thunderbolt
– Focus Blast
– Energy Ball
– Shadow Ball

The final moveset for my Gengar sweeper was entirely TM moves, so that made breeding for moves easy. Modest was my target nature, but Naive is acceptable since Gengar has no business tanking anyway.

I chose Energy Ball over Sludge Bomb basically just to threaten Bertha’s ground-types, especially Whiscash (who would wall Scizor and make Tentacruel and Flygon pay for a 2HKO) and Hippowdon (who goes down easily to Tentacruel’s Surf but threatens a 1HKO with Earthquake if Surf doesn’t do the job in a single shot). Sludge Bomb has high BP, and Gengar gets STAB with it, but Poison isn’t a great type for coverage. Grass types are easily handled by Scizor, Flygon, and even Tentacruel. Energy Ball provides more coverage options overall.

Evard, Tentacool
Clear Body, Gentle, Alert to sounds
– Poison Sting
– Toxic Spikes

My first major breeding project lo these years ago was for a defensive wall Tentacruel. She’s still a go-to for Battle Frontier and PVP matches. She made an excellent parent for this Tentacool in terms of potential IV gain. Evard didn’t get the preferred Liquid Ooze, but Clear Body is useful enough. I unfortunately didn’t have anyone handy with Ice Beam to breed onto him, so I’m stuck waiting until the late game to find it south of Snowpoint. I did get Toxic Spikes a little early, at least.

I wanted Bold on this one, but I got Gentle. While that means that his physical tankiness has been lowered, it also means I can keep Poison Jab on him instead of needing to blow another TM on Sludge Bomb.

Harrier, Trapinch
Hyper Cutter, Adamant, Capable of taking hits
– Bite
– Sand Attack
– Earthquake

Harrier will eventually be a physical Flygon with Fire Punch, Dragon Claw, and Stone Edge – basically a Choice Band set without actually being Banded. The problem will be keeping Harrier alive until Vibrava’s Levitate, Dragon typing, and enhanced bulk can take off some of the pressure.

And as a bonus, here’s the first installment, Twinleaf through Jubilife:

Edited RocketRun p02

I only wish you could trash Lucas.

Because Giygas is the only party member to start with his final moveset, he’s seriously overpowered. That’s especially true at these low levels where Gastly’s speed outstrips just about everyone who’s not using priority moves… and when the premier priority move among the locals is Quick Attack, Gastly can drop nukes with no trouble at all.

Astute observers will note that I have two moves different between the art and the party list. The art moveset was taken from the text file containing the original concept for the team – not the finalized version. It’s an error I didn’t notice until after I was done inking. Let’s just keep it under our hats. >.>

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