Random – My home seems to have been re-infested with Pocket Monsters. At one of his scout meetings my son learned to play the Pokemon TCG and suddenly both of them were very interested in Pokemon. Which is interesting because it wasn’t that long ago that they wanted nothing to do with Pokemon XY, maybe the newest tropical location has something to do with it or maybe it's just their age, but now they are poke-maniacs which makes me happy.
I played the Yellow version back in college when my daughter was born and have enjoyed every release since (although I missed XY, I did play the Ruby 3DS remake). It’s an addictive RPG with some many characters to level and obtain that even once you get through the main story you can continue to grind away for hours and hours… (probably missing XY was because I do’t have hours and hours any more).
Even though I’m a poke-fan I never looked at the TCG, but since my son was interested in went online and learned to play. I figure if we’re buying cards we’re going to play. A few decks later and I’m hooked. The game shares some elements with Magic the Gathering, mostly because it was designed by Wizards of the Coast so it was pretty easy to pick up on the core mechanics.
For the uninitiated you have a resource you can play attached to a creature once per turn. This powers up their abilities and you have other cards that let you draw or do other effects that are played for free, but the more powerful types are only once per turn. In magic terms you only have the first phase of the game. Draw, play creatures, play energy, play spells, attack pass turn. It’s fun and I’m enjoying seeing my boys learn strategy on their own terms.
In addition to the card games we started playing the DS games. I picked up the Ultra Moon version and am really enjoying playing it on my lunch break. With the 2DS version being very affordable I picked one up for each of the boys, it’s a great end of school, congrats on earning your rank badge, summer vacation entertainment gift. Of course once they started playing their big sister felt nostalgic and picked on up to play along. So we’re now all on an Alolan Adventure in a Pokemon Paradise.