Pokemon Adventures

Discussion in 'General Discussion Forum' started by JohnnyEgo, Aug 4, 2017.

  1. JohnnyEgo

    JohnnyEgo Mostly Harmless

    Oct 22, 2007
    Hi. I've been around a while, but I seldom venture out of the Guns topic on this site, in part because I don't play a lot of video games and I am on the older end of the membership base here. Old enough to have played Wasteland in my senior year of high school, and old enough that my oldest child is about to turn 20. I mostly hang out on old people forums about wood working and guns, where many of my peers do not know what a Pokemon is. I wrote what follows for that crowd, hence the Vietnam references. However, in an attempt to broaden out a little in my exposure to general discussion, I figured I'd share it here as well, so you can laugh at a middle-aged man coming to terms with a child's card game that in all honesty, I used to conflate with 'Pogs' as a thing my much younger brother was into. I give you JohnnyEgo's adventures in Pokemon:

    I am working an assignment that is close enough to my home that I can go there on my one day off. Today, my wife decided I would spend that one day off taking my seven year old to a Pokemon battle. As a child of the 70s, I predate the Pokemon phenomenon, although I was tangentially aware of my much younger brother's obsession with it. For those who haven't had children of the late 80s/early 90s, or the recent revival designed to take in nostalgic millineal parent's money, Pokemon is fantasy league cockfighting for children. They get a deck of cards with a bunch of little monsters on them, and then battle them against another kid's Pokemon until death or unconsciousness. There are also something like 800 episodes of cartoon cockfighting, of which my son has seen every one twice.

    I do love my boy, and he was really excited about his first 'battle', so I grit my teeth, loaded up on coffee, and headed over to the big comic book store adjacent to the CSU campus. The place was packed to the rafters, but only half the people were under 12. And much to my surprise, most of the adults were not parents of the children, but grown people there to battle imaginary monsters for local fame and glory? Among my favorites were several men in their 20s and 30s with assorted roughneck t-shirts, and my personal favorite, a mid 50s biker from central casting who showed up on his dressed-out Harley, tattoo-covered and leathery with a beard that would give the frontman for ZZTop some serious envy. Chain wallet, biker boots, and surly disposition. Watched him plop down at the table and whip out his customized box of Pokemon cards, complete with Harley Davidson stickers adorning the pleather sides.

    My son has studied the cartoon series with a scholarly intensity that can only be described as 'Talmudic'. He knows all 500 of the little creatures, all of their powers, and all of their weaknesses. What he does not know is the rules to the card game, which are so convoluted and esoteric that I could do Fourier Analysis in my head with less mental intensity. The kid we 'fought' against was only 7, but he had apparently come prepared for armageddon. Within the first few minutes, he had activated six of the little monsters to our two, and had upgraded them somehow to full weapon-of-mass-destruction status. I think he literally had a pack of fire-breathing rhinoceros. We had a crab and a rat. The rat got killed in the second round. Through a combination of beginners luck and sheer incompetence, we were able to mount an insurgent campaign with 'Crabby' in much the same way as the North Vietnamese in the Tet Offensive, and much to the amazement of the onlookers, we ran out the clock and fought the kid to a tie based on a technicality I still don't understand.

    Meanwhile, I discovered that there is apparently a way to monetize this thing, including a room for adults with a $100 buy-in. That helped explain some of the crowd. The other nice thing was the coffee-shop attached to the comic book store, which drew in the college girls waiting for their cloths to dry at the adjacent laundromat. I had to use my Dad-e-mon power of "creepy vibe side-gaze" several times. There was also a liquor store in the same strip mall, and I explained to my son that it was like a Pokemon store for adults, and Daddy needed a Bourbon-o-saur for his next match. But unfortunately, pounding down a fifth of bourbon while trying to destroy 7-9 year olds in a card game was frowned upon in that particular establishment.

    My son had a great time, and his smile was worth the smell of general body odor that comes from both a room full of pre-teen boys and virginal 30 year olds. And many of the folks we met worked very hard to explain the rules to us and give us advice on fighting an asymmetric battle. So I suppose I will be going on to You-Tube to try and figure out how to play this game with my son. And I will be having a conversation with my little brother that I never would have anticipated in eleventy-billion years, as to how to construct my son's next Pokemon battle deck. I think I am going to try to outfit the little critters with spurs, so as to better bleed out our competition.
    • [Like] [Like] x 4
  2. TorontRayne

    TorontRayne Racist Conspiracy Theorist of The Order of Chaos Staff Member Moderator Orderite

    Apr 1, 2005
    Post more outside the gun thread you old dirty bastard.

    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  3. JohnnyEgo

    JohnnyEgo Mostly Harmless

    Oct 22, 2007
    I'm going to try, although half the posts I read look like they were written by zombie ee cummings Twitter account. And I am equally sure most looked at that wall of text and thought 'Nope, not today.'

    My daughter makes fun of me for texting in complete, appropriately punctuated sentences. Kids these days.
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  4. TorontRayne

    TorontRayne Racist Conspiracy Theorist of The Order of Chaos Staff Member Moderator Orderite

    Apr 1, 2005
    We do have a lot of youngsters who were born in the mid 90's, so it is to be expected. I turned 32 last month so you still have some years on me, but I do agree with the sentiment. You could always visit The Order, but I can't say we are much better.

    Would chat more but I am cooking some sauerkraut. Cheers.
  5. JohnnyEgo

    JohnnyEgo Mostly Harmless

    Oct 22, 2007
    When on assignment, I work six days a week, 12 hours a day, in the field with a 95% surly male workforce. It was fun to tell them all I couldn't go to lunch today because I needed to sort out Pokemon cards for my son's next battle.

    Also, the print on these things is so small I need one of those old-people lighted magnifiers in order to read it all. And I still can't figure out how to distinguish cards of one series from another. I've been trying to keep the 'Burning Man' series he got at the last competition separate, but I can't tell if it really matters.

    I certainly hope he will remember this level of parental commitment 30 years from now, when I need him to change the nutrient paste dispenser on my senior care pod.
  6. Risewild

    Risewild Half-way Through My Half-life
    Modder Orderite

    Jun 14, 2014
    I had the pleasure of trying out Pokemon card game when they first appeared. I never liked it because it was too simple since I was used to more complex card games like Middle Earth, Legend of Five Rings and Magic the Gathering. So I know about this pokemon thing.

    But yeah, kids love that game, it is good your kid had fun and you had fun too. It is a great way to spend some quality time together playing and all of that.

    I just woke up so my brain is not working properly yet, but I loved reading your post. I second Toront's, post more outside the guns thread :clap:.
  7. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    I only play the core Pokeyman games, never been into card games of any kind, even the most complex ones are still reliant on luck and I am sure that one is my dump stat.
  8. MutantScalper

    MutantScalper Dark side in da houssah

    Nov 22, 2009
    Do you know this one. A buddy of mine plays it. Supposedly has a better 'balance' then Magic the Gathering.

  9. Risewild

    Risewild Half-way Through My Half-life
    Modder Orderite

    Jun 14, 2014
    Never played that one. It seems like it has the same problem that Middle Earth had. One game goes for hours :confused:.
    I do like Vampire: The Masquerade (now called World of Darkness, I think) universe and P&P RPGs but I never tried that CCG.

    MtG these days have so much bad balance that it hurts. I haven't played or bought cards in more than 10 years because it just got worse and worse...
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  10. JohnnyEgo

    JohnnyEgo Mostly Harmless

    Oct 22, 2007
    "Vampire the Masquerade" triggered a memory of my Navy days. The whole vampire thing was huge. Me and some of my buddies came back to the ship from shore leave, and one by one, requested to come aboard.
    The last guy come up the gangway and says "Permiffion to Come Aboard, Fir!"
    The officer of the deck looks at him and says "What did you just say?"
    "I faid, permiffion to come aboard, fir!"
    "Is something wrong with your mouth, shipmate?"
    "Its the fangs, fir."
    "Say what?"
    "The fangf, fir. I am a vampire."
    Sure enough, the kid had gone out and bought some prosthetic fangs and decided he would live his authentic vampire life on the ship. The officer of the deck wouldn't let him on-board, and made him sleep on the peer until he took them out.

    Of course, in my day, we didn't have these hot-topic Vampires who formed epic love stories while feeding off of 'energy' to make them 'glitter'. No, we had dark, emo vampires who drank blood and were played by Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt falling in love with one another... On second thought, maybe the newer vampires are better. Go Team Jacob.
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  11. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    Jacob is a werewolf, you uncultured swine.
  12. TorontRayne

    TorontRayne Racist Conspiracy Theorist of The Order of Chaos Staff Member Moderator Orderite

    Apr 1, 2005
    I'm not sure if that looks worse on him or you to be honest. :lol:
    • [Like] [Like] x 2
  13. lolpop109

    lolpop109 Water Chip? Been There, Done That

    Jul 14, 2016
    Yeah the card games alwasy had werid rules. I only really understood the video games. However I did colelct the cards and trade them
  14. Norzan

    Norzan Mildly Dipped

    Apr 7, 2017
    Some of my friends collected pokemon cards but didn't know a thing about the actual rules of the game. They basically collected them just like you collect pokemon in the video games.

    I do remember doing a full palythrough of the first pokemon trading card game for the Gameboy. My deck was just random cards and i have no clue how i beat the game. The normal battle them though is forever imprinted into my brain and i recognize the second it plays.
  15. Harangerish

    Harangerish First time out of the vault

    Aug 3, 2017
    I have a lot of good memories with Pokemon. I remember growing up, Pokemon Soul Silver was the shit. Though I never really got into the card game, I just collected them. I still don't understand the rules of the game anyways, I always just stuck to the video games, which are brilliant. Currently I'm replaying Pokemon Soul Silver because it's a great game and I have so many fond memories exploring the world and trading with my friends. Fun times.
  16. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    You make me feel super old. Soul silver was your childhood.... demn it's been 7 gens after all, Pokemon can legally get shitfaced under US law now...
  17. JohnnyEgo

    JohnnyEgo Mostly Harmless

    Oct 22, 2007
    Pfbbt. In my day, we had eight bits in our Atari 2600s, and we felt lucky to have them. Lucky, I say!

    I came home for Christmas one year, and my little brother got a 'Super' Nintendo, which I think had four buttons on the control pad. I remember looking at it and thinking 'Nope, too much.'
  18. TheAdversary

    TheAdversary Curious Incubus

    Jun 25, 2017
    I don't think I've played any Pokemon games that have trumped the Gold/Silver remakes. I loved walking around with the little bastards.
  19. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    That element was fun but, being a remake of the Jhoto games, it suffers from really wonky level balance all around with the initial confrontation with the league being awfully low level and then the level spike afterwards that forces you into grinding wild encounters because Kanto encounters can be as low as level 12 despite being technically post game content.
  20. Serifan

    Serifan Orderite Orderite

    Aug 3, 2006
    I would like tub pokemum. Hahahaha