Hey guys! Last week I went through each of the areas in the first half of Galar, from Postwick to Stow-on-Side, and gave my feedback on what they could offer that they more or less fell short on. Now, I’m going to go from Glimwood Tangle to Wyndon, and then cover the Wild Area, Isle of Armor and Crown Tundra as whole categories.
Let’s do this!
The only issue I have with Glimwood Tangle is that it’s so dark it actually hurts my eyes from the strain. That’s all. Plus I usually forget it’s technically a forest, because of how dark it is. But I’m actually pleased that we can get lost in this area.
I wished Ballonlea was larger. I can understand that it’s a forest-covered location, but it just feels so small. However, it’s just so beautiful, but I wish there was more purpose to it than it just being there.
Route 7 is pretty damn small, again. It’s technically got two sections to it, you end up back in Route 7 once you’ve gone to Spikemuth and gone through the Route 9 tunnel. But there really isn’t a lot, and I would have loved to have seen an expansion. I know there’s a bridge from Hammerlocke that counts as part of Route 7, but I wish it was more like the Nugget Bridge in Kanto, where you battle a sequence of trainers.
Route 8 is split into two halves that are distinctly different, and they really should have classed the snowy half as Route 9 instead, although I assume they wanted an even ten routes in this game. Steamdrift feels way too short, compared to the tricky labyrinth that is Route 8. I love the labyrinth though, because it feels a bit more challenging, and takes up more of your time.
Circhester is beautiful, although I wish that you could have your Pokemon actively bathe in the Hero’s Bath. I think that’s the only thing I have to suggest for Circhester.
Route 9 is a perfect length. You have several portions, Circhester Bay and Outer Spikemuth, that help divide this vast route. This route has just the right amount of diversions, with different areas to explore and find Pokemon.
Spikemuth, like my hometown of Scunthorpe, was just disappointing, as Spikemuth itself served as the Gym Challenge, where all you had to do was battle Team Yell. I’d have loved some more exploration, and not as much linearity. I do love how the end of the town makes it feel like this particular Gym is like some back-alley sport instead of a part of the actual Gym challenge. I liked it, and it made a lot of sense. I just wanted more exploration off the beaten track.
I feel like because we’ve already had snowy areas in Routes 8 and 9, it felt a little bland to have yet another wintry route, especially when the frost and snow seemed to just disappear upon arriving near Wyndon.
I felt that Wyndon was a lot of London aesthetic just shoved into one city. I wish you could ride the Galar Hurricane, which is based on the London Eye (I could see it charging a lot of money though). It didn’t feel truly big enough to encompass everything that London had. We could have had competitions and activities in a venue remininscent of the O2 Arena. We could have had a huge river, with a tunnel running below it with trainers, like the Woolwich foot tunnel.
There were two main things missing from the initial Wild Area – a Pokemon Centre and trainers that you could battle, the nursery workers aside. The only reasons you’d revisit the Wild Area after having played the DLC is for the nursery and for Galarian Zapdos.
Isle of Armor
Again, the Isle of Armor was missing trainers that you could battle outside the Dojo. We could have had some of the students dotted around the area, and you’d be able to fight them. The Isle of Armor does improve on the cave systems that the mainland failed at achieving, but it had a ways to go.
I would also have liked to have seen a few small Pokemon Centre-like areas to heal up your Pokemon, to save you from having to camp or head back to the Dojo. Aside from the Dojo, there really isn’t any civilian areas, and that’s kind of a bummer, really.
The Pokemon Centre issue is still present in the Crown Tundra, but we do have a village called Freezington (what a name, eh?). Maybe a couple more and it would have been great! However, it’s a step in the right direction.
The cave systems are fully fleshed out in this, and even as a cave-hater back in the day (Victory Roads were a nightmare), I loved this return to glory. Although I really wanted to fully interact with that massive tree in the Crown Shrine, it’s no biggie.