My venture into this week’s recent update of Pokémon Tower Defense 2 was embarked upon with considerable caution and suspicion; this is partly to with the fact that this is pretty much how I’ve always viewed the world (being brought up in South Wales left me with mistrust of people in general), but mainly because last week’s update was somewhat of a disappointment. The previous update involved travelling south of Violet City to reach Route 32, or as I’ve come know it, ‘The Route of Unending Disappointment’. My dejection with Route 32 was that there was barely anything to get stuck into in terms of gameplay; it contained only a few Mareeps and Woopers for capture and some higher-level Pokémon that apparently think your Pokéball simply isn’t a good enough home for them. I learned to live with the disappointment, however, and instead pinned my hopes on the next update. Thankfully, there’s a tad more substance to this week’s offering, which takes us to the west of Route 32 and into the mystical Ruins of Alph. You’ll also find that there are some pleasing quantities of experience points to be finagled along the way. Juicy.
A Wealth of Experience
Before we can skip merrily ahead to the main bulk of the action contained within this week’s update, we are physically prevented from pressing on with our Alph excursion by the seemingly run-of-the mill security guard of generic appearance, one of which being posted at the entrance to each area and acting as a physical representation of the limits of this week’s development of the game. This particular guard is holding out on us, though, since speaking with him will enter you into a battle in which you success will allow you to pass through the gate and onto the Ruins of Alph. The guard possesses a Level 20 Crobat which you will fight on a 1 vs 1 basis. Winning the battle is relatively easy provided your Pokémon are at the right level, with level 20 of course being a rough guide for your Pokémon’s battle-worthiness (and also being the maximum actual level your Pokémon can currently reach in this area). I’m aware that many have trained their Pokémon’s level to 30 and above, though this requires a simultaneous devotion of significant amounts of time and a distinct lack of other worldly activities that pertain to actually having a life to fill this time with. In a departure from Gandalf’s method of obstructing the path of those that desire to pass, the guard will simply let you slip past in a westerly direction.
This one just doesn’t know when to quit: Rematch your way to endless portions of quality, freshly-made experience points
You are able to enter into rematches with the obstructive guard ad infinitum, making him a literal battling goldmine which you can use to levy experience points from. It is a good idea to use this opportunity to train up any of the Pokémon in your collection that are lagging behind in the level department. Though your weaker Pokémon aren’t likely to fare well against a one-on-one battle with the Level 20 Crobat, you can use electric-type Pokémon to reduce his health down to minimal levels and finish him off with the Pokémon you wish to be the beneficiary of a tasty wedge of experience-points pie. I use my Shiny Shinx (which I was lucky enough to pick up as part of the mystery gift giveaway some time ago) to do the job, but you can just as easily catch a Mareep from Route 32 to fulfil this role.
[For the fervently dedicated fans of Pokémon and its Tower Defense counterparts, this tip will seem like a ridiculous stating of the obvious, but I’ll be honest, the onus is on you to simply ignore any information irrelevant to you and move on. There simply isn’t time for me (or anyone) to care about your overly-enthusiastic ‘I already knew that’ statements and excessively-smug attacks directed at my writing efforts that are based upon disturbingly (and needlessly) detailed knowledge of Pokémon Tower Defense]
The Alphabet in Ruins, Unown, and their Inexplicable Interest in Geology
After heading through the gate, you will be standing only slightly south of the Ruins of Alph, which possesses two entrances for you to explore. Each of the chambers beyond these entrances is pretty much identical and both contain a significant number of Unowns that appear and disappear at their leisure. There isn’t much to do here in the way of storyline development or general progress in the game since this is pretty much as far as the development has gone this week, but what we can do, however, is become involved in voluntary battles with the Unown for the benefit of our very own Pokémon collection.
Ruins of Alph: This is one of the two sections that are now accessible in the most recent update
Making physical contact with any of the Unown will start a battle in the usual manner, with the Unown entering from the left in single file and the usual battle positions available for your Pokémon above and below the advancing line of these unusually-shaped critters. The Unowns vary between levels 9 and 13 and once they’ve advanced over the right-hand edge of the screen, and having taken a keen interest in the mysterious rocks that are present in the ruins, will make a return journey from whence they came with the rocks in their possession. Once all of the rocks have been nabbed, the battle will be over.
Catching Unown doesn’t really put you at any particular advantage since they are the Pokémon equivalent of a lame duck (no offense to Psyduck/Golduck) and are unable to develop their move-set further than the ‘Hidden Power’ which they already possess. The Ruins of Alph, therefore, are at the moment merely a novelty that can be briefly explored, playing host to a few Unowns and dangling the metaphorical carrot of mystery in regards to these mysterious rocks that reside there. We can only speculate as to the content of the next update, but I’m guessing there’ll eventually be a bit of creative explanation about these rocks interspersed with some jaunty humour and self-referential narration; Sam has always been liberal with such light-hearted comments that are almost half the fun of the whole thing.
That’s all the coverage I’m giving Sam’s Most Recent update of the game, since there’s nothing to do until the next update but accumulate a collection of Unowns in all their shapes and forms. The most productive thing to do is to keep battling the guard at the exit from Route 32 and watch your Pokémon grow big and strong. Until next time, travellers.