Pokemon games have varying levels of difficulty. There are those that can breeze through the games and there are those that hit a roadblock because there can be a part where it can be hard. Players can bypass the hard parts by catching the right Pokemon and leveling them to a certain degree.
The Pokemon games never really have a difficulty level or other game modes. That’s where the Nuzlocke Challenge comes into play.
Also read: All Pokemon Cheats Compilation
What is the Nuzlocke Challenge
The Nuzlocke Challenge is a set of rules set by players to add a little difficulty. This challenge can be applicable to any of the main games but not the spin-off games. The origin of the challenge is a bit murky today but the name comes from a Pokemon comic with the Nuzleaf Pokemon mixed with one of the character’s names which is John Locke.
Anyway, the rules are not integrated into any of the games. The player has to be the one to follow through with the rules on their own.
Unfortunately, some rarely follow through but that’s what makes the Nuzlocke Challenge so interesting. There are the main rules as well as optional rules to follow. The main rules have to be followed and the optional ones are those that you can add into the game if you want to.
There are some ROM hacks and fan-made games that have a Nuzlocke Mode integrated into them. Regardless, here are the rules that you need to follow when you want to do a Nuzlocke Challenge.
- The player is only allowed to catch the first Pokemon they encounter in the area. If the Pokemon faints or escapes, then you can no longer catch a Pokemon in that area.
- If there are scripted battles or Shiny Pokemon encounters, then you can catch those Pokemon as well even if you already caught a Pokemon in that area.
- If there is a double battle, then the player can only catch one of those Pokemon.
- Any Pokemon that the player owns that will faint will be considered as actually dead. The players must release the Pokemon or just keep it in the storage without using it for the duration of the game.
Main Rules (Not Necessary)
- These next sets of rules can count as main rules but the player can choose to add a few of them. The first one is that the player must give their Pokemon a nickname.
- If the player gets a white out or black out which is basically all of the player’s Pokemon in its lineup faints, then that is considered as a Game Over.
- The player can only use Pokemon that they captured themselves. They cannot use Pokemon that has been traded to them by another player. However, Pokemon that are obtained through in-game NPCs by trading or just getting them can be allowed to use.
- The player should also avoid resetting the game in case they had a bad run because it nullifies the purpose of the Nuzlocke.
- These rules can be optional and the player can add them for an increased spike in difficulty when it comes to the challenge.
- The rules may start once the game reaches a certain point. Particularly when the player’s journey actually begins and when they are done with the tutorials.
- The Player ID can also force a rule into which Starter Pokemon that the player must choose. Numbers from 1 to 3 means they need to choose the Grass-type starter, 4 to 6 for the Fire-type, 7 to 9 for the Water-type, and 0 means the player gets to choose.
- Players may catch more than one Pokemon in the area. They can only catch one of each type but the rule “if the Pokemon faints or flees” can still apply. The player cannot catch that type of Pokemon in that area again but the others are still available.
- Another one where the player can be limited in buying items from the Poke Mart. It could be a number of Poke Balls or healing items that players can use.
- Banning certain items to use in the game like the Master Ball.
- Players can only start catching Pokemon after the Gym Battle in that area.
- Only using the same number of Pokemon that the Gym Leader is using. If the Gym Leader only uses three, then you can only use three Pokemon on your own.
- Players can also set a number of times that they can use the Poke Center in each area. Banning the use of Poke Centers is also something that you may want to do.
- The use of Breeding and the Day Care Center is not allowed.
- You are not allowed to flee Random Battles.
The Nuzlocke Challenge can be very interesting when you want to play the Pokemon games in a much harder difficulty. There are other optional rules but you can always come up with your own to match with the main ones during your run.