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How do you interpret Nuzlocke Rules in Gen 8?

raikaria

Conqueror of the Viridian Gym
Team Omega
Pokédex No.
541
Caught
Jul 19, 2019
Messages
119
This was somewhat of an issue in Let's Go as well; except Let's Go only has overworld encounters, so you can do things like wait for a pokemon to bump into you.

As most people are aware, Pokemon Sword/Shield has both Overworld spawns and shaking grass spawns.

It is also notable that both have different catch lists.

This puts a lot of a grey area on the idea of a 'first encounter'; especially from the angle of making people use pokemon they would not normally use.

Is a 'first encounter' taken literally; the first wild battle you get into? Because in that case one can quite easily cherrypick from overworld encounters.

What about ignoreing Overworlds and doing shaking grass only? Again, this cuts out a lot of pokemon, although it stops someone from cherrypicking.

Is it the first pokemon you see in the overworld? Because then you've excluded every single non-overworld encounter in the game. [Except in Glimmerwood Tangle where there are none]. And how do you rule if a bunch of pokemon spawn at once, such as in some places in Wild Area? Speaking of the Wild Area; what about Strong Encounters? You could easily encounter something with a level range which can cross into potentially uncatchable, particually as you travel to Hammerlocke the first time.

There is also the issue of Weather-based encounters in the Wild Area. Catch lists can entirely change based on the weather.
 

Trollkitten

Kitten of Lore
Artist
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
208
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
1,587
Location
Gatto Region
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
She/her, Aetherai Lorekeeper
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Clever
Pokédex Entry
Autistic writer who starts more things than she finishes. Hyper asexual Twitch Plays Pokemon lorewriter. Rather be a happy shill than an angry critic.
My Sword nuzlocke is what I call a shadowlocke (Psychic, Ghost, Dark, and Fairy types only), so if I spot a viable Pokemon of one of those types in the overworld, I head straight for it. If not, I muck around with random encounters until I find a viable Pokemon to catch.

I am somewhat miffed that I have somehow missed just about every viable Pokemon on my wishlist. Nickit, Milcery, that weird hat thing... I was looking forward to using them. Well, at least I have my non-nuzlocke save file to check them out with.
 

SweatingCalendar

Alligator lizards in the air, in the aaaaaiiiiiirr
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
935
Caught
Oct 24, 2019
Messages
446
Location
Nowhere Yet Everywhere
Pokémon Type
???
Pokédex Entry
Pokémon[a] is a series of video games developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo and The Pokémon Company as part of the Pokémon media franchise
The closest you can get to fair with overworld and grass encounters is before you go into the area close your eyes or be blindfolded and listen until you get an encounter.

When it comes to changing weather this might just be me personally but that seems more like a good thing as it adds more factors to encounters, emphasizing the first encounter rule when it comes to the lack of control you have when wanting to catch certain mons. (Though if you are doing a monolocke I can see how this could be an issue but idk how to work around that unfortunately)

Strong encounters you could exclude mons that are too high level to catch from counting as a death or hopefully you get lucky with having a mon with run away as their ability.
 

Ketsuba~n

Conqueror of the Mahogany Gym
Writer
Team Omega
Pokédex No.
883
Caught
Oct 9, 2019
Messages
412
I only go for random grass encounters and ignore overworld encounters outright. There have been two instances where I've run into an overworld encounter by mistake; I didn't count them as my first encounters for those areas.

I leave the weather as it is.
 

Garnet

Wolfwalkers? Wolfwalkers.
Artist
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
322
Caught
Jul 2, 2019
Messages
207
Location
Littleroot, Hoenn
Nature
Quiet
Pronouns
They/He
Pokémon Type
Dark, Psychic
Pokédex Entry
A strange Pokémon that claims to be both an artist and writer, yet almost never has any work to show for either.
What I've been doing for the Shield run I was originally doing for the winter one shot thing late? nahhh everyone else was just early is to flip a coin when entering a new area that has random encounters - If heads, I'll attempt to catch the nearest overworld spawn, while if tails, I go for a random encounter like grass (or fishing, if in an area without grass) :0 Weather, I just take whatever it happens to be when I enter an area - RNG said it's going to be a blizzard today, and who am I to argue with it, yknow? As for the over-leveled Pokémon, well. I don't count them as encounters, since they're more or less preset barring changes based on the weather and by the time you can capture them you'll probably have encountered something in their part of the Wild Area anyway, but best hope you got strong legs, a Poké Doll, or a Pokémon with Run Away, haha! I've played the game before, so it's easy enough for me to identify where the real threats are in the Wild Area and avoid them - If I run into them and wipe, its my own fault.
The biggest issue with these rules is that, to a certain extent, they lock you out of certain encounters that only spawn later in an area - Galarian Stunfisk in Mine No. 2 comes to mind, as I'm pretty sure the first encounter spot for them is after one where you'll generally find Pokémon wandering the cave - But for the most part those are accessible in other areas of the game as well, so I'm not fussed about it.
May or may not tweak these rules for future runs of the game, but I'm pretty alright with them at the moment!
 

Rumors

Or so they say...
Writer
Pokédex No.
258
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
1,010
Pronouns
male
Pokémon Type
Fire
Pokédex Entry
A Pokémon shrouded in hearsay and urban legend, spoken of only in whispered tales and hushed gossip.
Like I said in another topic, the rules state "first Pokemon you encounter" not "first Pokemon you see". We've always had some degree of cherry-picking in the games, such as choosing between a Snorlax or the tall grass in Kanto games, using Repels to avoid certain mons, Game Corner, gift mons, breeding, or going to other routes to make common catches to force a dupes clause encounter elsewhere with rarer catches. To be literal there's inherently nothing wrong with trying to "cherry pick" an encounter in Sword/Shield, IMO.

Whether it's in the spirit of the rules is more debatable, but we already fudge the line with dupes clause, shiny clause, monolockes, and so forth. And if all else fails then, yeah, you can close your eyes and step forth or go after whatever you notice first or run a literal straight line through or whatever floats your boat!
 

Neotornado

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Hacker
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
251
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
81
Location
Western Pennsylvania
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
I need to buy a pro account? (He/Him)
Pokémon Type
Electric, Grass
Pokédex Entry
Broke his own romhack with an egg. Still not sure how.
I personally just pick "overworld vs. grass" before I enter a route since some encounters are exclusive to one or the other. If I pick the former I allow myself one "scouting" session to sweep the area so I don't run into any trainers, then leave the route (to reset the wilds), then just rush into the route blindfolded and hit the first thing I see. For wild areas I'm not allowed to get encounters until they become available (one burst when you enter, a second when you get the third badge, and a third when surf is obtained) with weather waiting permitted.
As for raids I'm debating on if I'm allowing one free raid per run or if raids count as the encounter for the area in which they are in. (if you go with the latter you can get every single wild area catch early except for the two surf-exclusive ones if you're willing to grind for wishing stones)
 

Emperor ServingSpoon

The original AND the 16th!
Pokédex No.
238
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
143
Location
Route 119
Nature
Quirky
Pokémon Type
Grass, Ground
Pokédex Entry
Adept at procrastination. If he ever seems productive, it's likely because he's ignoring something far more important.
I really don't mind too much how someone wants to interpret the rules with Swish or Let's Go. For me, the death rule is the one that's set in stone. And so long as you don't keep catching multiples of the same Pokemon to get one with an ideal ability or nature or whatever, then I feel like you're not breaking the first encounter rule however else you choose to interpret it.

But if you really want to go fully random, then there are definitely still ways to do it. It's harder to implement completely fairly when playing blind, but yeah. For each area, you flip a coin. Heads for overworld encounter, tails for random encounter. It gets a little more complicated when areas have different patches of grass with different Pokemon in, or if you wish to incorporate raids as a valid encounter type, too, but you can work those into the system easily enough (you just might need a coin with more than two sides at that point!).

Overall, one of the things I like most about Swish is how much choice and how many options are available to you very early on. And I say, let people do with that what they want. I don't think all that many of the Pokemon in Swish are inherently OP, so the main thing I'd be worried about limiting are raid rewards. Specifically the Exp. Candies and TRs, which could create overleveled Pokemon (which isn't too hard to do even without the candies) with OP movesets VERY early on, if you have no restrictions on them!
 

raikaria

Conqueror of the Viridian Gym
Team Omega
Pokédex No.
541
Caught
Jul 19, 2019
Messages
119
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #9
Overall, one of the things I like most about Swish is how much choice and how many options are available to you very early on. And I say, let people do with that what they want. I don't think all that many of the Pokemon in Swish are inherently OP, so the main thing I'd be worried about limiting are raid rewards. Specifically the Exp. Candies and TRs, which could create overleveled Pokemon (which isn't too hard to do even without the candies) with OP movesets VERY early on, if you have no restrictions on them!
Oh there's quite a few things you can get absurdly early; if you've ever seen a Speedrun of Gen 8:

You can get a Growlithe; go ahead a little towards Hammerlocke; pick up a Fire Stone, evolve Growlithe; and then use a move relearner to get absurdly powerful attacks on Arcanine including Extremespeed; Flamethrower; Play Rough and Crunch. All before the first Gym! And Growlithe is an overworld encounter, so you can 'guarentee' this in a Nuzlocke of Gen 8. [It takes some clock fiddleing because Growlithe is weather-specific, but you can do that]

One solution I was thinking of was adding together the encounter tables to a 200%; and then simply putting that through an RNG; assigning each pokemon their cumulative percentage range. Of course, you should probobly do this after you decide if you want to fish or not; or else you can 'replace' your catch with a fish encounter.
 

Emperor ServingSpoon

The original AND the 16th!
Pokédex No.
238
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
143
Location
Route 119
Nature
Quirky
Pokémon Type
Grass, Ground
Pokédex Entry
Adept at procrastination. If he ever seems productive, it's likely because he's ignoring something far more important.
You can get a Growlithe; go ahead a little towards Hammerlocke; pick up a Fire Stone, evolve Growlithe; and then use a move relearner to get absurdly powerful attacks on Arcanine including Extremespeed; Flamethrower; Play Rough and Crunch. All before the first Gym! And Growlithe is an overworld encounter, so you can 'guarentee' this in a Nuzlocke of Gen 8. [It takes some clock fiddleing because Growlithe is weather-specific, but you can do that]
Oh, yeah stone evolutions are pretty busted with the new relearning abilities. But that's more of a broken mechanic than a broken Pokemon. Personally, I'd either require holding off on those evolutions until you'd learnt all the moves you wanted (as you've had to every other generation), or at least forbid relearning the moves until the level where the pre evolved stage would have learnt them.

Your solution would work. I don't think I'd personally be a fan, though, since you could easily end up drawing a rare random grass spawn that could then be a massive pain to find (as someone who's completed the Pokedex, rare random grass spawns are the worst!). I'd rather decide on the encounter method (either by choice or by coin flip) and then let the game's randomness decide it from there, either by the first random encounter, or the first (or closest) overworld spawn. That way you would be playing the game, while your way would feel more like you're playing around the game.
 

SimplyUnknown

Johto League Champion
Writer
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
242
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
1,297
Location
Invisibly Watching
Nature
Quiet
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Fire, Psychic
Pokédex Entry
A silent watcher who speaks only when something needs to be said. Offers free hugs to those who need them.
Oh there's quite a few things you can get absurdly early; if you've ever seen a Speedrun of Gen 8:

You can get a Growlithe; go ahead a little towards Hammerlocke; pick up a Fire Stone, evolve Growlithe; and then use a move relearner to get absurdly powerful attacks on Arcanine including Extremespeed; Flamethrower; Play Rough and Crunch. All before the first Gym! And Growlithe is an overworld encounter, so you can 'guarentee' this in a Nuzlocke of Gen 8. [It takes some clock fiddleing because Growlithe is weather-specific, but you can do that]
One of the rules I think I'll be going with is that I'm not allowed to go past the bridge until I've beaten Kabu. That means I can't use the brothers for stone hunting and should limit early evolutions for stone mons. After Kabu is beaten, you're around level 25/26 anyways which is reasonable for evolving stone mons anyways.

As for the catching thing, I'm planning on flipping a coin before each encounter. Heads means I have to get an overworld encounter and tails means it has to be in the grass. I feel like that's more fair considering there are mons that are overworld only and grass only so either way, I may end up with a different encounter. Picking a specific overworld encounter is alright because it's not really different from using repels to guarantee a specific catch in earlier games.
 

Mr Spaz

I caught the big– OH SHIT
Pokédex No.
399
Caught
Jul 6, 2019
Messages
334
Location
Under your bed. I found $50
Nature
Modest
Pronouns
He/Him/It
Pokémon Type
Electric, Flying, Ghost
When I nuzlocked Shield, I just flipped a coin. Heads was shaking grass encounter. Tails was "stand there and whistle until something runs into you.

As for Raid Battles, which weren't discussed at all here, I just only allowed myself to catch the first Raid mon I found (Ended up being a Sneasel). I still did more raids to get Exp Candies for the express purpose of leveling up new team members without getting the rest of them overleveled.
 

Draknir

Fear the Deer
Pokédex No.
240
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
114
Location
Probably using my laptop
Nature
Quiet
Pokémon Type
Dark, Dragon
The way I've done it is:

-Catch the first Pokemon encountered on a route. I can pick overworld or grass and try to find something specific but if I get something before that, that's it.
-I can catch a Raid Pokemon before each badge and the Champion's Cup amounting to 9. However, I can only use the naturally occurring ones OR Wishing Pieces found naturally or via the Digging Duo (No buying them or joining other people's raids). I can do as many raids as I want in between.
-I can attempt to catch a G-Max Pokemon even if I don't have a raid encounter because they aren't guaranteed. However, I must use a regular Poke Ball if I don't have one.

Almost immediate EDIT: I forgot to add one thing: For G-Max Pokemon I manage to catch when I don't have a raid encounter, they count for my next one and I can't use them until after the next badge.
 

Arbitrary

Conqueror of the Violet Gym
Pokédex No.
334
Caught
Jul 2, 2019
Messages
185
Location
Here
Nature
Adamant
Pronouns
He/him
Pokémon Type
Fighting
I literally just blagged it. I just got overworld encounters half the time and normal ones the rest. Just based on what I felt like doing. Also one mon per wild area section, honestly this still gets you less Pokemon than previous games, since there's so few routes and other landmarks.

One thing I will say, is that at least Sword and Shield distribute the new Pokemon way better than XY or SM/USUM. There's still obnoxiously rare ones but less of it, and you'll get plenty of new ones during the game anyway.
 

raikaria

Conqueror of the Viridian Gym
Team Omega
Pokédex No.
541
Caught
Jul 19, 2019
Messages
119
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #15
One thing I will say, is that at least Sword and Shield distribute the new Pokemon way better than XY or SM/USUM. There's still obnoxiously rare ones but less of it, and you'll get plenty of new ones during the game anyway.
I find Gen 6's distribution isn't that bad, but Gen 6 does have the largest regional dex of any game [450].

Gen 7's distribution is godawful from Akala onwards; yeah. Routes keep having generally the same things, and then you'll come across an area filled with unique encounters you see nowhere else and you can only have 1. I don't know why you do that with a dex of 400. You can let it slide somewhat in S/M with 300, but 400 in USUM?

Anyway, I've decided to combine a few things. Flipping a coin [Or more precisely; RNG'ing 1/2]. 1 is overworld; 2 is grass. Grass is done as normal. Overworld is then RNG'ed from 1-100 to simulate a grass encounter.

Using Route 1 Overworld as an example:

Skwovet is 50%; so 1-50 means Skwovet is the overworld encounter I take.
Rookidee is 30%; so 51-80
Wooloo is 15%; so 81-95
Niket is 5% so 96-100
 

Rumors

Or so they say...
Writer
Pokédex No.
258
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
1,010
Pronouns
male
Pokémon Type
Fire
Pokédex Entry
A Pokémon shrouded in hearsay and urban legend, spoken of only in whispered tales and hushed gossip.
You can get a Growlithe; go ahead a little towards Hammerlocke; pick up a Fire Stone, evolve Growlithe; and then use a move relearner to get absurdly powerful attacks on Arcanine including Extremespeed; Flamethrower; Play Rough and Crunch. All before the first Gym! And Growlithe is an overworld encounter, so you can 'guarentee' this in a Nuzlocke of Gen 8. [It takes some clock fiddleing because Growlithe is weather-specific, but you can do that]

A lot of the games allow for this sort of thing though. Off the top of my head...

Kanto you can have Nidoking/queen, Alakazam, Clefable, and, with a little patience, Gyarados before the second gym (although you might want to wait on the Nidos) with strong moves (off the top of my head, Queen can get Body Slam at around Misty levels in Gen III if you time the evo right). As soon as you get through Rock Tunnel you have free access to end game moves and access to two Snorlax. Zapdos and Articuno can be obtained as soon as you have Surf to help break the second half of the game.

Johto, if you're very lucky, can let you net level 40 Raikou, Suicune, and/or Entei before the 4th gym. They can break the game in half until the League on their own. Goldenrod also gives super easy access to powerful moves before Whitney. The mascot legendary is also available before the League to break it and the second half of the game.

Hoenn also allows Alakazam by the first or second gym. Also ORAS has [email protected] and Mega-Starters in mid-game to break the rest of it. And aren't the Primal Mascots available before the League?

Sinnoh (maybe just Plat) lets you potentially have Steelix before the second gym with a lot of luck or before the third with patience instead and also pick up Earthquake for it on the way to Fantina. You can guarantee this via Dupes Clause by catching Geodude in any of the many places it shows up before you hit the mines in the first gym town. There's also the trio of Psychic legendaries if you want them plus the mascot.

When Dreamworld was live, Unova let you get potentially early-game-breaking mons like Druddigon before the second gym. BW2 also gets you Return incredibly early which lets you have BP 102 attacks on all your mons if you don't mind running in circles for a long time.

Kalos has Snorlax before the second gym as a mandatory encounter. Mega-Lucario and Mega-Kanto-Starters break everything after them. Mascot legendary can break the end parts of the game.

Alola lets you spam Z-moves willy-nilly to trivialize most fights. Mascot, again, breaks the end game.


The early game Growlithe > Arcanine is really strong, although I wouldn't want to use that against Nessa and Kabu has Arcanine himself so fair game then. But really, there's lots of ways to break these games in half, sometimes with some luck and sometimes guaranteed. (And I'd argue early Arcanine is less potent than anything that makes mid and late game bend over backwards.) So, IMO, it's really up to the player how much they want to break the game or how much they want to hold back for more challenge.
 

raikaria

Conqueror of the Viridian Gym
Team Omega
Pokédex No.
541
Caught
Jul 19, 2019
Messages
119
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #17
A lot of the games allow for this sort of thing though. Off the top of my head...
The difference with these and Gen 8 is that the Move Relearner isn't completely busted. It's generally either lategame or needs Heart Scales.

Yes; you can have some broken pokemon in the 'earlygame' in other games. But how many of those games allow said busted pokemon to have it's most powerful moves and coverage? Yes; you can have an Alakazam at Lv16, but it won't know Psychic like an Arcanine in Sword/Shield can know Flamethrower; or a Ludicolo can have Giga Drain and Hydro Pump.

Also to be entirely fair; most people ban Legendaries in Nuzlockes. And I personally usually ban 'forced encounters' which covers things like X/Y Snorlax.

There's 'overpowered' and there's 'literally getting an endgame pokemon with an endgame moveset at Lv10'. You can actually get a Ludicolo with Giga Drain and Hydro Pump at a lower level than you should even have a Lombre.

But all this is generally a case of house ruleing and adding extra restrictions so you don't just remove all challenge. Gen 6 in particular Gamefreak just loves to throw crutches at you.
 

TrueZero2

Ninja! Comic! Best Match!
Screenshotter
Pokédex No.
357
Caught
Jul 3, 2019
Messages
123
Nature
Quirky
Pronouns
He/Him
Pokémon Type
Electric, Poison
For overworld vs random encounters, it's a case by case basis, but I only get one catch per area, regardless. If I'm aiming for an overworld encounter and suddenly I get hit by a random one, fair enough, the random one becomes my encounter. The reverse also applies. If I'm aiming for a random encounter and I run into an overworld one, the overworld one is the one that counts.

As for the Wild Area, I give myself a 'One per Badge' rule. One catch when I first enter the Wild Area as a whole, then an extra catch every time I get a badge. Raids also count towards the Wild Area, so if I'm on Route 6 and I see a Raid that I like pop up on the Y Gear, I can attempt it for the loot, but I can only go for the catch if I've got one available.
 

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