[draws the Venn diagram of ‘parenthood humor’, ‘Dark Souls references’, and ‘Pokemon nostalgia’ with this comic at the center]

So! You know I got on that bandwagon and picked up Let’s Go Pikachu. It’s functionally the exact same game as the one I used to speedrun weekly when I was ten, just completely overhauled for the Switch. And friends? Friends. It has co-op play.

What a masterful choice on behalf of the developers! It’s so shrewd. They know their target audience isn’t just kids, it’s people like me who’re in our thirties and probably now have kids under ten, and they know that going through us is the easiest way to get the next generation hooked on Pokemon. Even knowing that, though, the co-op play feels specifically designed as a gift to parents, because it’s the kind of thing where a kid can pick up the second joycon, run around with you for a little bit without messing up your game, and put it down when they get tired of it.

The moment Momo figured this out, she was on me like glue. Which actually kind of improved my gameplay experience, because until that point I suppose I was content with the game, the the sense that all that nostalgia was very comforting and fun… but it wasn’t very stimulating. The moment she picked up the controller and had questions, though, I felt this sense of… challenge, I guess, because she was asking questions and making inferences about type combinations, and I was watching her actually learn how to play the game by interacting with it and making (frequent) mistakes, like I did.

It was a really sweet experience and I’m so glad they added it, even if it did up the game difficulty to Souls-like levels at some points.